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Reviewed 19 April 2012

Enjoyed my stay and culture. Abobe average food, and excellent beach and interesting activities mixture. Guests can relax, shop, partake in excursions and party. Top notch housekeeping, firont desk, guest serviles and security, spanish wines were great. I will return again.

Date of stay: April 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank VanRessen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 April 2012

My family and I travel at least 3 times a year for Sun and Fun - This is our 3 trip to the Grand Oasis Palm - we have also stayed at Oasis Viva and Oasis Cancun. It is a Great location - Good Food and very exceptional people. The wait and bar staff go out of their way to make sure you are happy. The maintenance/cleaning staff are always doing something from morning to late at night and the maid service was what you would expect from a $500 a night resort. The rooms are a do need a little sound-proofing, but hey it was springbreak. This trip we went with 4 other couples - there was something for everyone to do and no one felt left out. Our only complain was we had 9 people in our group and more than once when we tried to sit together we were met with it was not possible, when all they had to do was push 2 tables together awhole 3 feet (all times the restaurant were more than half empty).
Would have no problem going back

Date of stay: April 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank barrett913
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 April 2012

First off, if I am fortunate enough to be going to Cancun with my family during peak travel time, I am going to go in with a positive attitude and try my best to see everything in a good light. I have been to Mexico 7 times, Barbados, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic 2x, and Puerto Rico. Therefore, I have many other places to compare Grand Oasis Palm to.
That being said, there are certain expectations that I feel a 3.5 star resort should have which this one did not.
1) Working Elevators- There was 1 bank of 2 tiny elevators for the entire hotel. Many times you would wait 5+ minutes to catch the elevator; and it was so small that more than 4 people at a time, would be painful. Yes, stairs are an option, but not with a 2 year old in a stroller heading to the 5th floor. Many times, the elevators would be out of service. My husband also felt that staff had some kind of bypass key because sometimes it would skip over our floor entirely.
2)A Pool Area Without a Death Trap- As you will see in my picture, there was this opening in the pool area to an underground basement type of thingy. Hard to explain. But there were these boards that they would invert to a triangular shape, and on either side of the boards, there was a 3 foot opening where you could fall about 20 feet to your death. I was petrified that my daughter would somehow be curious about the boards and plunge downward. Parents, please exercise the utmost caution around the pool. I really do not understand why there would not be cones around this area, or perhaps, have it roped off. It is in the direct path from the pool to the beach and EXTREMELY UNSAFE. I wanted to tell the people at the front desk, Billy and Oscar, but upon checkout, they didn't even ask us how our stay was, and really seemed to care less about their jobs. I hope their manager is reading this! Anytime there was a problem, they would direct us to the concierge who was never there. It was like they were trying to deflect to other people.
3)- Soundproofing so you cannot hear every little noise in the hallway- We were awoken several times the first night to springbreakers returning from partying at 1AM, 2AM, 3AM and 4AM. For some reason, it is like the hallways amplify every little noise!
4)Lights in the hallway- They don't turn them on. So if your eyesight is poor, good luck getting into your room.
5) Free lockbox- Why would they charge you $19 a day? Absurd!
That being said, I did really like some aspects of this hotel.
1- Food- Many choices for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The buffets had tons of options for many tastes, and you won't go hungry. For lunch we tried the Beach House, Serapo buffet, and the pizza place. All were very yummy. For dinner we did the steak buffet twice, the Japanese and the Beach House. Steak buffet had excellent cuts of meat, Japanese had good sushi and yummy Asian entrees and Beach House had great grilled food. The hamburger, hot dog, ice cream and popcorn carts around the pool was an added bonus. Food was a major plus, and that says a lot coming from NY. Waiters worked very hard and all were friendly.
2- Loungers- Never did we have to fight for a chair, whether it be the pool or beach. We did reserve chairs at 7AM. However, we switched places a lot during the day and never had a problem finding a seat.
3- Beach and Pool- Both were great for our 2 year old (except the death trap mentioned above). There was a shallow end of pool, and the beach was very calm too.
4- Cleanliness- Someone was always mopping, washing windows, etc. We didn't have an issue with housekeeping who came every day.

Room tip: Comfy beds but if you are a light sleeper, you will hear everything from the hallway!
Date of stay: April 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
7  Thank ny7chic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 April 2012

My 19 yr old daughter and I took our first trip together to Mexico. We found that the hotel was nothing like the photos and descriptions in the travel mags. The rooms were clean but there was absoloutely NO soundproofing. we could hear people talking in the hallway all night long. The beach area was very disappointing - it was weedy and dirty. we spent more time in the pool than on the beach. The buffet was average, usually our choice for breakfast. A la carte restaurants, on the other hand, were great. Service, food quality, etc was top notch.
On the whole, we found the resort dull. No evening entertainment other than music around the pools. We spent most of our time elsewhere.

Date of stay: March 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank AlbertaJansue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2012

Over the last 20+ years, we have stayed at a number of different types of
holiday resorts and hotels in Acapulco, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta,
Cozumel and the Mayan Riviera.

This is our third visit to Cancun.

Popular with both Latin American and North American guests, Grand Oasis Palm
is one among a family of resort hotels in Spain and Mexico under
the Oasis International Hotel Group (www.oasishotels.com).

In Cancun, their other sister resorts include Grand Oasis Cancun,
Oasis Cancun, Oasis Palm and Sens del Mar.

Grand Oasis Palm is adjacent to, and interconnected with, Oasis Palm.

Since 1998, their charitable foundation, Fundacion Oasis (www.fundacionoasis.org),
has assisted various social development programs, especially in education.

Although our room was at Grand Oasis Palm, it quickly became obvious to us
that Oasis Palm had a much prettier meandering swimming pool area,
more elegant restaurants to dine at, a livelier ambiance and more
interesting entertainment/activity options.

To show you what you can expect at Oasis Palm and Grand Oasis Palm,
We also put together a quick little video compilation with live
audio-visual clips recorded during our 2012 March break there.

Here is the link:

http://www.tripadvisor.com/ProfileGallery-i40370992.html

Enjoy!

* * * * *

GRAND OASIS PALM

The resort offers its guests outstanding value in terms of good management,
(mostly) genuinely happy-to-serve staff, good (not excellent) beachfront
location, well-maintained lush landscaping and infrastructure, good food,
clean refurbished rooms, activities and entertainment.

This is a family-oriented resort hotel which caters to lots of children.

However, it also has a very cosmopolitan mix of mature travellers
and young single adults of various nationalities.

It is one of the more active hotels along the northern edge of Cancun
where the waters are, for the most part, a lot calmer, shallower
and warmer than they are along the eastern strip of the island
where it is - in contrast - frequently a lot rougher, deeper
and colder.

Here are some adjectives we would use to describe Grand Oasis Palm:

contemporary / upscale / clean / modern

* * * * *

TOP 10 TIPS

And here are our TOP 10 TIPS for Grand Oasis Palm:

(1) Visit your bank and place an order in advance for a thick wad of fresh
newly-minted USD$1.00 bills to feel good giving them away as gratuities ...
and enjoy the faces of hardworking service staff light up with bright
appreciative smiles like it's Christmas again;

(2) Bring along your hotel voucher/booking confirmation because you will need it
when checking in at reception and for the transfer between the airport & hotel;

(3) For a good night's sleep, ask for a (quieter) room facing the lagoon
and away from the disco;

(4) Get a (not always, but often free) day pass from reception to enjoy
one of their other sister Oasis resorts in Cancun, certain restrictions
and a nominal fee (especially during peak holiday periods) may apply;

(5) Refrain from encouraging petty theft (it happens everywhere) by insuring
your valuables - cash, passport, credit cards, jewelry, etc. - with a lock
(just USD$4.00 a day) for your room safe and enjoy peace of mind (priceless)
throughout your stay;

(6) Unless you are the legit kind of morning person who automatically wakes up
at the crack of dawn and would be thrilled to line up at 7:00am bright-eyed
and bushy-tailed, you could instead have lunch - without reservations -
at the 2 restaurants, Akeru and Cocoa, which would otherwise require one
for dinner;

(7) If you do not have an abundance of patience and/or you do not wish to risk
getting trapped in the (yet to happen) (rare) event of a power failure,
take the stairs instead of the elevator;

(8) Try the beach next door at The Royal Cancun - it's quieter and their water
is warmer, cleaner and less painful on the bottom of your feet;

(9) For more activity options, use the amenitites at Oasis Palm: breakfast
at Dos Lunas, lunch at Akeru or Cocoa, dinner at Sarape and drink
the night away at La Cantina;

(10) Pack your strongest, most fragrant shampoo/body wash and/or
moisturising bar soap as running tap/shower water (perhaps piped in
from the methane-bubbling mangrove swamps nearby) in your room
might smell a little like rotten eggs (and taste a lot like
strong chlorine cocktail) ... and yes, be prepared to side-step
the intermittent scalding hot or freezing cold blasts of water
when in the shower!

* * * * *

BATH TOWEL ETIQUETTE

If your bath towels have not been changed for a week ... it's your fault.

For being presumptious. Or for not opening your mouth to ask
after a couple of days without fresh towels.

For everyone else and for those pretending to be savvy and well-travelled,
there is, might be, should be - if someone has not already stolen it -
a little placard somewhere in the bathroom, advising all guests that
if you hang the towels, they will not be changed.

To get fresh towels, you must leave your used towels on the floor
(regardless how unhygenic or unintuitive it might be).

At other hotels, the untold secret may either be to put the towels
in the sink or in the bathtub.

More about that other mystery some other time.

* * * * *

THOU SHALL NOT TEMPT

You can expect a high level of honesty and integrity.

Be an angel - notwithstanding - and refrain from tempting the (morally)
weak and less fortunate.

Lock away in either your luggage/suitcase or room safe all valuables,
including expensive-looking clothing and accessories.

Do not leave any of these kind of items in sight, on the table,
in the closet or in the drawers.

If you lose anything, it's ... yes, your fault!

* * * * *

AQUA FRIO, POR FAVOR

Water: the best drink in town ... next to tequila.

However, tap water is not recommended for consumption (for obvious reasons, duh).

Exceptions aside, you are probably entitled to one bottle of purified water
in the refrigerator in your room for each day of your stay.

Double check with front desk regarding your purified bottle entitlement.

For more water, bring a bottle and tip the waiter to have it filled
at the restaurant or pay for having more of them in your room.

Don't be cheap with mankind's most valued drink.

Tequila, you can have for free at the bar.

* * * * *

DON'T BE LAZY, START WALKING

Exercise is good for you.

Be prepared to frequently take the stairs as elevators can sometimes be infrequent
and/or crowded, and they can also mysteriously skip and by-pass certain floors
(your floor, especially), besides being a little claustrophic, stifflingly warm
and not well-ventilated to the discomfort of some less than hardy guests.

Imagine for a moment:

God forbid, if there is a power failure, you will be cursing yourself forever
if trapped in such an elevator with just elbow-room, cramped in like sardines
with other unfortunate victims and standing space only!

There are lots and lots of stairs/steps around the resort to test your fitness
and graceful stride ... what a great way to work away the calories
but not so if you are tipsy.

* * * * *

NOISY VS. QUIET

What's that thumping, huffing and puffing we hear?

Well, there are basically 2 types of rooms, based on acoustic merit.

Exceptions aside, rooms facing the lagoon are generally quieter
than those facing the ocean and bay.

You had better be a real party person or someone who passes out senseless
every night from an overdose of liquor if you get a room anywhere close
to the disco ... the noise (is that music?) (oh, sorry) and revelry
often goes on till the wee hours of the morning.

Don't say we didn't warn you.

Adjoining room walls are acoustically paper-thin, so you will not need to
put your ear to the wall to eavesdrop on your neighbours.

Try jumping on the bed (like little kids do) in the wee hours of the night
to arouse your neighbour's imagination.

When checking in, just tell the reception staff what type of room you prefer
before he/she starts punching in your room assignment on the keyboard.

More often than not, they will try their best to give you what you request,
whenever possible.

But do not expect (impossible) miracles.

* * * * *

WHERE IN THE WORLD ARE WE?

Cancun is a figure 7-shaped island that is connected to the mainland
at both ends by bridges.

Situated at the northern end, Oasis Palm is closer to downtown Cancun
(not located on the island but on the mainland) than most other resorts.

Nearby is the jetty to take a ferry to Isla Mujeres for only
USD$17.00 (return trip).

Major shopping centres like La Isla (probably the most colourful
and popular on the island) are a quick 15-minute bus ride away.

Just tell the driver where you would like to go when boarding any
of the buses plying the street ... and he will let know you
when to get off.

Give him USD$1.00 (and let him keep the change as your tip).

You simply cannot get lost!

The shopping centres are perhaps best enjoyed as an evening stroll
after an early dinner.

* * * * *

AT THE BEACH

Body surfers who prefer hard pounding waves will not be disappointed
if you ask for a day pass to use the facilities and beach of one
of their other sister resorts along the eastern strip of Cancun.

It's just a 15-minute bus ride away.

Even at high tide, the relatively calm waters around Oasis Palm will only
come up to around knee or waist level, depending on how tall you are.

Great for kids and for wading around with little fish darting about
(although a bit stoney and painful on the feet closer to shore)
or for just soaking, especially during the later part of the afternoon
after the sun has had the opportunity to heat it up for you.

Slide over to the neighbouring resort next door for an almost stone-free,
pain-free experience ... it's a mini version of the vast calm shallow
beach waters of Cayo Coco in Cuba.

The sand here is soft and white (compared to the more grainy coral sand
along the eastern strip), and the water can be quite clear on a good day.

For good company, you have a pirate ship anchored close-by across the bay;
a never-ending parade of catamarans, ski-doos, yachts and motor boats
to distract the eyes; and a resident helicopter taking off and landing
every so often, almost right in front of you.

Suggestion - bring an inflatable donut float to drift around in ... cool!

This is one busy but relaxing beach!

* * * * *

WI-FI

USD$25 for 5 days / USD$10.00 for a day

Although wi-fi access was possible almost everywhere we went on the premises
- at the restaurants, lobby, in our room on the 9th floor and even
on the beach (!) - getting connected was like a game of Russian Roulette.

Frequent problematic access to Yahoo! email account.

Sometimes, resetting wi-fi connection with on-off button on our laptop,
re-starting the browser or logging out and then logging in again
using our username & password helped alleviate the problem.

Keep your cool ... and try again at different times of the day/night.

Always keep your fingers crossed.

* * * * *

GIVE AND YE SHALL RECEIVE

Tipping is not expected.

With or without gratuities, service is often - not always (unless you are
royalty or a popular movie star) - attentive and prompt.

Our "Best Waiter Award" goes to Ernesto at Sarape ... ask for him.

As a small gesture of your appreciation for good service and good work ethic,
we suggest you consider giving up a little of your (everyone knows)
hard-earned mullah (which probably would not mean much to you anyways
but which would likely mean a lot more to the person who served you).

There is an army of maintenance, security, technical, logistical,
supervisory and administrative staff working (often) out-of-sight
to ensure your safety, comfort and enjoyment throughout your stay.

While your patronage alone helps contribute towards their livelihoods,
plan, nevertheless, to give a couple of dollars every day to the maid
and take care of your servers (and other deserving staff) as well
... since they tend to be somewhere at the bottom of the ecological/
economic hierachy.

You will be rewarded with good karma.

Unless you wish to allow someone else to pick up the tips you had
intended for the maid by leaving it on the table, we suggest you
personally hand it to her yourself because other staff also periodically
and discretely access your room (often during your absence) to top up
the refrigerator or for a quick check/inspection.

Do the right thing by doing the unexpected: tip and expect nothing in return.

Give and it will be given unto you ... wonder where those words of wisdom
came from.

* * * * *

EAT, DRINK & BE MERRY!

You will not starve; and we promise the food and drinks will be much better
than what you had on the plane, and there will be heck a lot more variety
than what you would normally have at home ... so be grateful and enjoy!

Dress code in effect for all restaurants.

Here are the restaurants which do not require prior reservation for dinner:

Sarape - for Mexican buffet

Dos Lunas - for Continental buffet

The restaurants which require prior reservation for dinner include:

Akeru - for Japanese delights

Cocoa - for harvests from the sea

If you are like us, preferring to sleep in a little longer and not wanting
to line up at 7:00am to book a dinner reservation at the latter two
restaurants, you might consider having lunch alfresco instead
- without any need for a reservation - by the pool at Akeru
or by the beach at Cocoa.

Try the "Dragon Roll" at Akeru.

The seafood at Cocoa is also quite good.

Coffee lovers take note:

For your strong expresso or cappuccino fix - not available in the restaurants -
drop in at the indoor lobby bar lounge (the one with 4 large mural portrait
paintings on the wall) which is tucked away in a corner a flight of steps
below check-in/reception on the way out to the swimming pool area.

Brandy/Cognac connoisseurs:

When at the Cantina, ask to taste Don Pedro Gran Reserva Especial,
critically acclaimed by many afficionados as one of the Top 5
brandies in the world.

Surprisingly, this world-class brandy is made in Mexico ... and even more
astonishingly, you might even be able to purchase a 1-litre bottle
of this delicious libation for only about USD$20.00, if you are able
to find one at the liquor stores downtown.

* * * * *

WHERE TO DRINK TEQUILA

There are many bars scattered all over Oasis Palm but the Cantina -
an almost authentic replica of an old Mexican bar - is where you
should take your first shot of tequila!

If you are lucky, the Mariachi will there to serenade you.

Yee-hah!

* * * * *

BEST PLACE TO PARTY

Currently, the number #1 place for all ages to chill out and party
the night away in Las Vegas style in Cancun is at Coco Bongo
(www.cocobongo.com.mx).

Check out their website for more info.

* * * * *

BEST DAY TRIP

There are many great day trips and excursions to choose from
- Chichen Itza, Tulum, Isla Mujeres and so on - but our
all-time favourite is Xcaret (www.xcaret.com).

Xcaret is a once-in-a-lifetime full day of fun for the entire family.

Be sure to also stay for the night show at Xcaret ... it's one of
the best world-class live cultural performances anywhere
in the world!

Simply S*P*E*C*T*A*C*U*L*A*R (in every sense of the word)!!!

* * * * *

SAY "HI!" FOR US

If you meet any of these fine folks, kindly send them our love and kisses:

Jorge (front desk supervisor)

Felippe (front desk receptionist)

Juan Carlos (Oasis Plus rep)

Ismail (supervisor @ Sarape Mexican buffet restaurant)

Sulmar (hostess @ Sarape Mexican buffet restaurant)

Ernesto & Jorge (waiters @ Sarape Mexican buffet restaurant)

Orlando (waiter @ Dos Lunas Continental buffet restaurant)

Eduardo (supervisor @ Cocoa seafood restaurant)

Giovanni & Daniel (waiters @ Cocoa seafood restaurant)

Luis & Jorge (waiter @ Akeru Japanese restaurant)

Juan (bartender @ La Cantina)

Santos (server @ La Cantina)

* * * * *

GENERAL SAFETY

Most decapitations, executions and security problems involving drug cartels
have, to date, been localised along the border with the US and in towns
such as Acapulco along the west coast of Mexico.

Tourist destinations along the east coast of the country - such as
the Mayan Riviera, Cozumel and Cancun - are currently perceived
as relatively safer holiday options in comparison.

Regardless, your trip to Mexico would in all likelihood be uneventful
and death-free since murder/homicide rates are much higher elsewhere
in the world.

One needs to be extra vigilant, however, when venturing into downtown
Cancun (on the mainland), especially late at night.

* * * * *

PRE-ARRIVAL PREP

While on the plane to Cancun, take your time to diligently answer all questions
on the tourist/customs declaration cards issued by your flight attendant.

Do this in advance to avoid being asked to go back in line by immigration/customs officials at the airport to properly

complete your paperwork.

Unless you have made other arrangements, your complimentary designated transfer
to the hotel will be waiting for you with a placard outside the terminal building
in the car park/drop-off/pick-up area, so after picking up your luggage,
put on your blinders and walk straight out. Try not to look left or right
in case you be side-tracked or hood-winked by (time-share and other agency)
vendors when passing through the confusing gaunlet between the luggage
carousel and the building exit.

* * * * *

FINAL THOUGHTS

We encourage you to read through as many reviews as you can (especially
the bad ones) with the goal of not repeating the mistakes of others
... such as why you should not leave cash and other valuable items
unattended or unsecured; why it is a good idea to invest just USD$4.00
a day for a lock to the safe in your room; why you should be aware
of what is included and what is not included in your vacation package;
and so on.

Be positive and enjoy yourself because if you are happy and relaxed,
your good vibes/juju/karma will be reflected back to you by those
around you ... and you may begin to notice that people are actually,
more often than not, frequently trying their best to please and
accommodate you (rather than give you a hard time).

Have a sense of humour.

If you have a problem or a special request, politely and respectfully
tell reception staff about it. Most are well-trained, eager to please
and are able to communicate in English.

Vacations are more memorable, enriching and enjoyable when you know
the names of those who serve you and when you make a few more new
friends along the way.

Have a fantastic time!

* * * * *

ESSENTIAL SPANISH VOCABULARY

If you are an educated and savvy traveller, you would put in some effort
to be at least minimally literate with some kind of Spanish ...
other than "tequila"!

Here are our most frequently used Spanish words/phrases:

how are you? (como estas?)

(i am) good/fine, thank you (bien, gracias)

good morning (buenos dias)

to say goodnight to someone (buenas noches)

hello/hi (hola)

thank you (gracias)

you are welcome (de nada)

please (por favor)

si / no (yes / no)

one (uno)

two (dos)

three (tres)

four (quartro)

water (aqua)

water, please (aqua, por favor)

hot water (aqua caliente)

cold water (aqua frio)

coffee (cafe)

milk (leche)

coffee with milk (cafe con leche)

two coffees, please (dos cafe, por favor)

beer (cerveza)

one beer, please (uno cerveza, por favor)

red wine (vino tinto)

White wine (vino blanco)

more food, drink, etc., please (mas, por favor)

more water, please (mas aqua, por favor)

that's sufficient/enough, thank you (sufficiente, gracias)

towel (toalla)

two towels, please (dos toallas, por favor)

what is the cost/price? (cuanto?)

* * * * *

CAVEAT

So that you don't come back and tell us otherwise, all information provided above
may not be 100% accurate and they are subject to change without notice.

All opinions expressed above are just that ... simply opinions, not facts.

* * * * *

Date of stay: March 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
40  Thank bydesignonly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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