Wow, just Wow! And I am not referring to the beautiful Gran Bahia Principe Coba. Although I could use those words to describe this amazing resort. I am referring to a recent review dated March 2nd which I just read on this website. I don’t even know where to begin and perhaps this particular traveller does not deserve a retort, but anyone deliberating on whether to visit GBP Coba or not deserves the truth.
I travelled with 3 others to GBP Coba the 2nd week in February and all four of us are looking forward to our next trip there. This is not our 1st trip anywhere, my husband and I have travelled 15 times in the last 20 years to somewhere in the Caribbean and always stayed at a 4 or 5 star all inclusive resort. GBP Coba is right up at the top of our most loved list. And Yes, Yes, Yes, we also chose to travel with dark sunglasses and left our rosy ones at home.
I cannot comment on all the remarks made in the above mentioned March 2nd review; it would take me all day, but I can comment on a few important aspects. A few (very, very few) comments which were made might have had some small aspect of truth to them, but everyone should remember they are in Mexico, not Canada and they are on holidays, Relax.
First the service – we never had any trouble or complaints. They work hard and long hours and still manage to smile. We were friendly and respectful in return. We did witness some very ignorant guests who had no concept of manners or respect. And they wonder why the resort staff were not groveling at their feet and servicing their every need. There are thousands of employees at the 3 Gran Bahia Principe resorts and we never had a problem with any we encountered. Great Service.
Tipping – yes we did tip. Not all the time and not everywhere, but we did tip when service warranted it. Yes, we did tip a lot of the time, but it was out of gratitude for good service and nowhere near ‘40 to 50 usd’ a day.
Insects – we never encountered any cockroaches or any other insects in our rooms. We stayed on the 2nd floor of Bldg 19. We even made the comment that there were very few insects on the whole resort. One of the 4 of us did encounter bites on her legs upon returning to Canada and was told by her Dr. that they were sand flea bites which she could have gotten at Akumal Bay Beach or Playa del Carmen Beach as well. Some people do have an allergic reaction to such bites. For those who don’t like bugs or the effort put forward to eliminate bugs, should stay in Canada during the winter season.
Weather – although we had some beautiful weather, it did cloud over for a bit each day. February is not always the ideal time, weather-wise, to travel to Maya Riviera. But we cannot complain on a website dedicated to critiquing travel resorts as they were not at fault for any bad weather guests might have encountered.
Cleanliness – the grounds, including ALL OF THE POOLS, were always kept in immaculate shape. This probably was not always easy considering the habits of some of the guests.
Food – there was always something good to eat. If anything looked questionable, we did not dwell on the negative and make derogative comments, but chose one of the many, many other items. Our 3 A la Carte restaurants were the Mikado, the Dolce Vita and the Le Gourmet. Service was excellent at all three, but extremely slow at the Le Gourmet, even though it was almost empty. Our favorite was the Mikado. We did not partake in the Mexican night at the Hacienda Doña Isabel as it was our prerogative to pay and attend or decline to attend, so I can’t comment on it.
Size of Gran Bahia Principe – those writing reviews must have read previous reviews before booking the Coba. I was aware of the size and the access we would have to all 3 Gran Bahia Principe resorts. We took advantage of this access and enjoyed trying out a lot of the 18 or 19 restaurants or snack bars, 22 bars, 7 pools and every beach. The trolleys came by often and could get you to any destination quickly. We did carry the map we received at check-in with us most of the time and had no problem getting around. We never found the resort too large.
Children – unlike another traveller who stayed at the Coba approximately the same time as us, we never had any complaints regarding children. We saw very few. Perhaps it was because we stayed at the beach (usually Tulum Beach) more than at the pools. I don’t even recall many children at the buffet or the A la Carte restaurants or walking around the grounds.
Excursions – we chose to take the Colectivo (van style mini bus used by Mexicans and tourists) to the Tulum Ruins, Akumal Bay Beach and Playa Del Carmen. Never had a problem. The walk in from the Highway to the Ruins and Beach were short, approximately 5 minutes. The Akumal Beach was a hidden gem behind the Dive Shop which we walked by the 1st time. When leaving Akumal Beach the four of us opted to take a taxi as he was charging $9 to return to the Gran Bahia Principe, which is less than the $12 the Colectivo would have cost us ($3 each per person). He was also close to the Dive Shop and we did not have to walk back to the highway.
The only problem we witnessed during our week stay at the Coba was initiated by an inebriated hotel guest at the 24hr snack bar late one evening. We were amazed and relieved when hotel security, which you would never usually see, were there immediately and very professionally resolved the situation within minutes. Good job! And remember, that incident did not occur because we were in Mexico, but rather from a drunk tourist who could have been anywhere.
As I said, I cannot comment on everything mentioned by the unhappy traveller, that would take forever. A lot of his complaints seemed to be generated by other guests and therefore cannot be blamed on the resort or the staff. Also as I said, we had a wonderful and memorable vacation which we cannot wait to repeat. Thank you to everyone at the Coba for making our vacation so enjoyable. For those individuals who did not have even one nice thing to say... Yes, Yes, Yes, we are only happy that they will not be present at the GBP Coba on our next highly anticipated visit. Hooray!
Tips: Best beach is at the very far, far end of the Tulum Resort for sand and waves. Best beach for children is the Coba Beach. Best snorkeling is at the middle Tulum Beach near the sandbags, but bring water shoes.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC