My wife & I are in our middle 40’s & recently stayed at the All Inclusive, Adult Only (23+) 4.5* Grand Oasis Playa in Cancun from January 19th to the 26th 2007. We were originally booked at the Oasis Cancun but they overbooked & Sunquest offered us the supposed upgrade to the Playa.
We have been to Mexico 5 times now so we are used to the timeshare people at the airport etc so I will not dwell on that issue except to say “Do Not Stop & Talk To Anyone In The Airport!” Go straight through the airport outside & find you tour operator who will be clearly marked with a sign. Please remember that other people will be on the same bus or van with you & they do not want to stand around in the heat waiting while you talk to timeshare people in the airport, they want to get to their hotels ASAP & start to enjoy their vacations! The drive to our hotel was about 15 minutes in an A/C van with 4 other couples (1 of which we had to wait for at the airport as stated above).
Check-in was not a problem as there was only the 2 of us & 1 other couple. The rooms would not be ready until 3:00 pm (it was only 11:00 am), which was not a big deal to us. This enabled us to wander the hotel & bars. All the workers in the Hotel were pleasant & very helpful. The only fault we had was the concierge people were very pushy & irritating & at one point we had one follow us all the way across the lobby to beg us to take a tour of another hotel. Each time you entered the lobby they would again chase you. The hotel is not very well marked. There are no names on the restaurants or bars & the map is terrible.
Hotel / Lobby: The hotel was very clean looking with marble everywhere & yes there were 2 elevators & only 1 worked. I think the other was under repair as it was boarded up. There are 8 floors & numerous stairs to climb up & down to almost everything & every place. My wife & I do like to walk a lot so we always take the stairs anyway. If you have a problem with negotiating stairs, this is definitely not the hotel for you.
In the lobby area there are numerous chairs to sit on & yes there is a large “red dead tree” in the center but looks rather unique. Off to one side is the Lobby Bar that serves whatever you fancy including cappuccino.
Just past the Lobby Bar & out to the front of the Hotel is a somewhat quiet area with a beautiful Infinity Pool that overflows to the rocks around its edges. Also in this area are “swing beds” a bar & I think the massage area but we didn’t spend any time out there. The main pool is beautiful that has 3 levels. The first level is a quiet area that flows to the second level through channels with concrete walkways over it. The second level has a shaded swim up bar that has a waterfall flowing over the ends of it from the first level. I think this bar would be a lot nicer if it was located in the sun as it was never busy. That area overflows to the third level, which is the activities area. The pool has various depths to it that I think are marked by different colored tiles on the bottom & there are steps into each area. All the pools were very nice & warm.
All I can say is gorgeous as most in Cancun & the Mayan Riviera are. This hotel is located near the start of the strip so walking south is maybe 2 miles. Walking north goes forever! I talked with a bartender & he said they had to truck in sand as the Hurricane took a lot of it out to sea. There are numerous chairs to be had at any time so there is no need to get up at the crack of dawn to save any. There are 15 or 20 Palapas to sit under, double size mattresses with pillows that can be put on 2 lounge chairs, & there are also bed like enclosures to be had which I never did get the name of.
Bars: The first bar is the Lobby Bar that greets you upon arrival. It has a very nice atmosphere & is not to busy. This bar serves all drinks including cappuccino. In the corner there is a Baby Grand Piano that I never heard played. The second bar is out front at the Infinity Pool that is also very quiet. If you like quiet & serene spots this is nice. The third bar is located just outside on the same level as the lobby. This is a terrace area that overlooks the main pool & has a beautiful ocean view. This bar is open until around 10:00pm. The fourth bar is the swim up bar that I spoke about before in the pool section. The fifth bar is the same level as the swim up bar which also serves hotdogs, burgers, nachos, & fries as well as all the drinks. The sixth bar is a Sushi Bar located down one level from the pool on the way to the beach. I am not a sushi eater so I did not try it out so therefore can’t comment. The seventh bar is a beach bar located right on the beach that served everything. The eighth bar is the disco area that opened from 10–2:00am.
All bars have ice-cold Corona on tap not local beer & that was nice to see & taste.
When we did get our room at 3:00pm, we were located on the 6th floor room 612 facing north toward the rest of the Cancun strip overlooking the main pool area & the Caribbean. It was a gorgeous view. The room did not have a balcony but had a large window that opened & you could sit with your feet hanging out just like a balcony. I do think the rooms without the balconies were larger than the ones with balconies. We had a king size bed that was very comfortable with a light material canopy over it…very nice touch. The in-room safe @ $5.00/day is always a good investment. There was a beer fridge stocked with water, beer, pop & they kept it stocked pretty well. A/C worked great, sometimes after being in the sun to long it worked to good. TV took a long time to warm up but worked OK once it was on for 10 minutes or so but I didn’t go all the way to Mexico to watch TV anyway. All in all, we found the rooms quite adequate & the maid service good. We always left a tip for the maid.
They were nothing to write home about. The buffet for breakfast was about the best it ever got. There was only 1 toaster so always a line up. There were normal items like scrambled eggs, pancakes, waffles, fruits, breads, juices etc. Dinners were basically the same every night & food was never hot just warm at best & there were no names on anything which would have eliminated at least some off the waste. There was only one day that the dinner buffet was different; all they did was added fish. There were 3 alacarte restaurants, Mediterranean, Italian, & Mexican. I can only speak about the Italian, as that was the only one we ate at. I had the Cannelloni & my wife had the Medallion Steak. All seemed great until we got back to our room. After about 10 minutes my wife had extreme stomach pain, which was so bad she had to lie on the tile floor to get any relief. She also had the cold sweats. It was a day & ½ before she was somewhat normal. Room service is included so don’t be afraid to use it. The clubhouse sandwich is pretty good.
Entertainment: Not much to speak of. We only saw the National Show, which was quite good. The dancers do put a lot of time & work into them. Each day they do aerobics & scuba instruction in the pool. There was only 1-volleyball game that I saw & that was our hotel against the one next to us. The disco was not very busy at all as this is an adult only hotel & most people stayed at the terrace or Lobby Bar for after dinner drinks.
If you want to go anywhere, jump on the bus. Stops are everywhere & the wait is only about 10 minutes. It is $6.50 pesos each or $.65 US each to ride anywhere. If you don’t want to go all the way into town, try La Isla Mall or KuKulcan Plaza they have everything you need.
All in all I would say if you can get this hotel for under $1,000.00 per person including taxes, that would be acceptable & as far as the 4.5* rating, I would give it no more than a 3.5 or 4* tops.