I just returned from 1 week at GBP Akumal and wanted to share my observations for those of you planning your next vacation. As a "planner" I spent a lot of time asking questions in the forums and reviewing this website prior to our trip - the effort certainly paid off. Simply put – plan your room location, and ALC choices in advance...email the resort 1 week prior to arrival.
I've itemized my review in the headings available on this site:
Food – 4/5: This is NOT a 5 star food resort. Meaning you are not going to be able to eat lobster at each meal (if at all). We did however visit a number of the ALC restaurants as recommended on this site and were very happy with each. The buffets had a wide variety, with variations in the menu daily. I would recommend that you visit the buffets when they open at each meal, because as the time gets later, the food becomes limited and less appetizing. The 24 hour buffets were almost disgusting during the day (burgers and hotdogs sitting around...). That said, after hours 8 pm or later, the food was all fresh and on a “per request” basis – excellent at 11 pm when you're craving fries and chicken. We didn't order room service because the menu was the same as the 24 hour buffet and our villa was right beside it.
Service – 4/5: The staff was very good and generally met all of our needs. As expected there were several instances where we noticed a significant language barrier causing confusion (we only speak English), but these were limited. Buffet waiters were often quite busy and didn't keep up with refreshing drinks and clearing plates – I didn't find that to be a problem given that we still ended up full and satisfied!
Location – 5/5: Akumal is a beautiful place. Under 1.5 hours to the airport (private shuttle). The resort grounds are immaculate, and easy to navigate. I would suggest borrowing a bike at the hacienda on your first day to explore – you can cover the entire property in well under 1 hour (the time limit each day for free riding). Also, this resort is very close to the Tulum ruins for a quick and cheap day trip, as well as Playa Del Carmen. The hacienda as mentioned earlier also has a number of shops for souvenirs, all at good prices with a willingness to barter for better deals (15-20% discounts) without leaving the property.
Rooms – 5/5: We stayed in villa 64 on the Akumal site (3rd Floor). The room was very nice with a partial ocean view. We requested one of the villas closer to the ocean in advance through email, and were accommodated – very happy as some of the other Akumal villas are much further away (still within a 10 min walk). No issues with A/C or hot water – we were almost too cold!
Sleep Quality – 4/5: We emailed in advance to request a mattress topper which saved time. The beds were quite comfortable! The resort was, however, renovating some rooms, and sadly they started working between 6:30 and 7 am. Given that we were waking up at that time most days to watch the sunrise it wasn't an issue – but if you were someone wanting to sleep until 10 am, it might be a consideration and worth enquiring about.
Cleanliness – 5/5: Amazingly clean resort! No words can explain. Given the volume of people wandering around, we were VERY impressed.
Spa – I can not comment, since we did not use this service.
Value – 5/5: For all of the reasons noted above, this resort offers exceptional value (coming from Canada).
Additional comments: At this point my review is becoming quite wordy! I'll end with a few random comments. The pools were all very nice, but seating is limited. I hate to say it, but you have to save them if you want to get one in the shade before 10 (and still want to make it to breakfast). The beach is nice, however the sand is a little grainy and rough – not a big deal but hard on the feet at times. Swimming with the fish was fun, be sure to bring a bun! The hacienda has a great club for after hours with good music and dancing – very popular. The shuttles were good and you could get around the resort quite easy. The bars are ALL excellent, the music bar at Tulum has a nice atmosphere for 9-11 pm. The shows were fun for the most part, we did not like the “entertainment” show, but the others were fun. Coba had the best shows, followed by Akumal and Tulum last – be warned, the shows are different at each resort each night, and the MJ show for example is different depending on which resort you're watching it at (same for the other shows as well).
PM me if you have any questions – I would return again, but have other places I want to explore first.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Facilities and services 3 swimming pools 4 jacuzzis 2 children's swimming pools Solarium with sun umbrellas and sun loungers BAHIA SPA (additional charges apply) Sports centre: a gym, 5 tennis courts, bicycles Motor sports (additional charges apply) Aquatic activity and diving centre Entertainment amphitheatre Wi-Fi access in the lobby (free) and with an no additional charge in the rooms Buffet restaurant opposite the sea 3 a la carte restaurants 9 bars Cocktail Lounge Riviera Maya Golf Club: 18 long holes and 9 executive holes with lakes, cenotes and Mayan jungle Hacienda Dona Isabel: karaoke bars, shows, live music and a night club Rooms 758 spacious Junior Suite Superior rooms. Equipped with: Two full-size beds or one king-size bed A living area with sofa A fully fitted bathroom: shower, washbasin, dryer and magnifying mirror Hydro massage tub Bathrobe and slippers (to be enjoyed throughout your stay) Pool towel (to be enjoyed throughout your stay) Balcony or terrace Air conditioning Ceiling fan Direct-dial telephone (additional charges applicable to external calls) Radio alarm clock Flat-screen TV Mini-bar with mini alcoholic beverages (included) Coffee set Safe (included) Ironing set 24 hour room service Butler service (upon request) Evening turn-down service Pillow menu Wi-Fi (no additional charge) Children Bahia Scouts Children can enjoy facilities designed especially for them: Children's swimming pool Mini Club (children aged 4 to 12) Mini Disco in the evenings Bahia Scouts Water Park Teen's club (children aged 11 to 16) Other services An internal mini-train service providing access to all the facilities: 24-hour medical service (additional charges apply) Pharmacy (additional charges apply) Personalised menu options for celiacs and diabetics Specialised wedding, anniversary and event planning service Casin ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gran Bahia Principe Akumal
- Bahia Principle
- Bahia Principe Mexico
- Gran Bahia Principe Hotel Akumal
- Mexico Bahia Principe
- Bahia Principe Tulum
- Grand Bahia Principe Akumal
- Bahia Principe Riviera Maya
- Bahia Mexico Principe
- Akumal Gran Bahia Principe