There were only two groups on our bus, my daughter and I and another family group of eight or so. We were checked in within five minutes, and a porter showed us to our room and where the nearest buffet restaurant was located. Our flight was an hour late, so the buffet was kept open for us. When we entered, the waiter welcomed us to Mexico and to the Decameron, and seemed like he meant it. I have never been made to feel that welcome on arrival anywhere, and it made a very good first impression.
Rooms: We had a basic hotel room, typical Latin American style– two beds, tile floor and a table with two chairs. Simple but comfortable. The room was forty feet from the nearest bar and seventy-five feet from the beach. The window was only single-pane glass and opened, so with the tile floor outside, it was a bit noisy when anyone when past.
The complex has five buildings, Cocos 1 through 5. Cocos 1, 5, and 2 (in that order) are on the beach and each has its own small pool, Cocos 3 is across the road and has no pool, and Cocos 4 is a block up and backs up onto the main highway and has the adult only pool.
Restaurants and Bars: There were three restaurants, the Tropical (the main buffet), La Canoa (Mexican buffet) and La Bamba (the steakhouse and seafood restaurant). The latter two required reservations for dinner but all were open for lunch without. All three were excellent. Food was tasty and plentiful and the serving staff uniformly friendly and helpful.
There are also three bars, two by the beach and one by La Bamba. Again, service was uniformly friendly. The liquors were local brands (not name brands) and the beer was Indio, available on tap in both dark and light varieties. As Mexican beers go, it was quite good.
Beach/Pools/Grounds: The beach stretches a good mile from the river at La Penita (the next town) to the point at the west end where it becomes impassable due to a rocky outcropping with a naval base. The beach is very active. There are restaurants, bars, and hotels along it and lots of people around, especially on weekends. A number of fishing boats work off of the beach, and fishermen clean their fish right on the beach, attracting many birds. There are also many vendors selling everything from oysters and fruit to the usual tourist stuff. Around the point is the beach at Los Ayalas where the Decameron’s beach club is located. There is a free shuttle, but you must sign up to take it (so that the staff will know how many will be eating lunch). The beach club is within easy walking distance, and some people did walk, but the staff urged against this as the walk is along a very busy road with no sidewalks and narrow shoulders. As mentioned above, there are four pools for the five buildings. The one at Cocos 4 is adults only, and a bit bigger, but none are big and all are shallow. Oddly, the maximum depth in all is only 1.45 metres/4.79 feet. None are heated, and the ocean was warmer for swimming.
The grounds are not extensive, but are cared for well. Every day, people were working away at sweeping and mopping the floors outside the rooms, painting and generally keeping the place neat and clean.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: There is a market on Mondays in the main plaza in town, and one on Thurdays in the next town, La Peñita. That one, called Tianguis, is bigger and has everything from housewares to CD/DVD’s to arts and crafts. It is a short cab ride, costing about $2.50 Canadian each way. Both markets were worth visiting. I don’t know that we got any real deals on anything, but the experience was fun. Many of the same vendors are on the beach in front of the resort or set up tables at the resort in the evening.
Whale watching is apparently good, but we didn’t get around to doing that, and other trips are available to be booked on the beach.
Other Comments: The guests were mainly Mexicans and Canadians, many with children. Because it is in a town, and not in the middle of nowhere, it is easy to wander the streets of the town, shop in local markets and eat or drink out if you want to do so. This is the fifth Decameron I have stayed at over the years, and I have to say that all have been well run. This one is a bit spread out; obviously, it was once five separate hotels which have be acquired by the Decameron chain over the years. But the quality is consistent with the others, and I felt that the food was better here than at the others I have stayed at, and the staff friendlier. We really did feel welcome and that the staff were glad to have us. Some photos can be seen at: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=34327&id=100000831464217&l=49e7ebcd1c http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=34378&id=100000831464217&l=b8da749572