Lovely beach, not the softest sand, a little bit rocky entering the water but fine once youâ€™re in.
The sea was lovely and warm and looks stunning from the shore all shades of blue and green.
It was often too choppy to go snorkelling but on the one day our photographer went out he saw a stingray and lots of fish just off the beach. We walked up the beach (to the right if facing the ocean) and its very quiet with only a few other walkers and further up some apartments which are virtually empty. If youâ€™re up for it we walked this way for about an hour and just past the white apartments (which you can see in the distance from the beach at dreams) and there is a deserted looking hotel with the most beautiful area where the herons nest and the rocks form your very own private cove. Take plenty of water, towels and sunscreen cos there are no facilities here we had the place to ourselves apart from a family of locals. We did a self portrait TTD session here on our last day and it looks stunning. Wear beach shoes for the walk, some areas on the way get a little nasty with rubbish, rocks and shale.
THE VIEW ALONG THE BEACH TO THE RIGHT. REALLY NICE, QUIET AREA AROUND THESE APARTMENTS IN THE DISTANCE. APPROX 1 HRS WALK.
OUR SELF PORTRAIT TTD WAS SHOT AT THE ABOVE LOCATION.
Self Portrait TTD :: Our Self Portrait TTD slideshow by northernflasher - Photobucket
Both pools are really nice. Lots of activities going on in the Dolphin pool, all day, every day if you like it loud and fun this is the one for you. All the entertainment team are based here and do a fantastic job.
The relax pool is definitely not an adults only pool but doesnâ€™t ever have any activities going on so you can swim lengths and relax. The relax pool starts really shallow which is appealing for young children.
Our main issue is that both the pools and the beach need more sunbeds and infuriatingly people are so selfish with claiming the sunbeds which is a practice I HATE and strongly feel that it should be banned. The staff would occasionally move towels that had been left unattended for a while but were nowhere near vigilant enough with this issue.
There are literally no loungers free by 7.30am with people saving them and then not turning up until the middle of the afternoon. We started off very polite and then got wise and ended up dumping peoples stuff on the sand or moving it all onto one sunbed. More often than not it would still be there in the evening when we were leaving our area meaning the beds would have stayed empty the whole day AAARRGGGHHH RANT OVER!!!!
The spa is beautiful, a truly relaxing and pampering environment. We had the couples full body massage which was included in the ultimate package and wonderful, probably the best Iâ€™ve ever had. We enjoyed it so much we did the same later in the week. Our therapists were Francis, Flavia and Nidia who were excellent.
Leave plenty of time for booking in, reception was always busy and the computer booking system seems so confusing that the staff struggle with it and mistakes are made. You are advised to use the facilities, steam, sauna, Jacuzzi etc before your treatment and it takes a minimum of 1 hour to do it the way its recommended. I suggest getting to reception a minimum of 90mins before your treatment.
Some of the attendants donâ€™t speak English at all so it can be a bit confusing when you enter the locker rooms. Once youâ€™re changed into your robe go through to the main area where you can take your steam and sauna together with your partner. My parents in law won a spa day while we were there but the attendant made out like they had to use the male and female designated facilities inside the individual changing rooms and nobody pointed out that there were joint facilities in the main area so they didnâ€™t really enjoy the day.
Activities and Entertainment: 10/10
Hubby and I are really not the kind of people that need organised entertainment but based on our groups opinion and the things we did see, there really is everything you need at this resort.
There is something going on all day every day but unlike other all inclusives we've been to the entertainment staff here respect your privacy and will not hassle you into participating.
Our favourite was the fire show. The first week we watched it on the beach chilling out on beanbags which was awesome and made for a fantastic atmosphere. The second week it was too windy on the beach so the show moved to the patio, it was a different group but still excellent.
We also enjoyed the capioera show at the plaza.
Activities and entertainment our group tried and enjoyed were:
Canoe races in the Dolphin pool
Beach football and volleyball
Mexican Theme Night
Mechanical Bull Riding
Caribbean Theme Night
Live Rock Band in Desires Disco
My one recommendation would be to double check when you get to the resort what entertainment is organised for the same night as your wedding, at what time, in which location. They of course have to cater for the entire resort not just the weddings so all the entertainment goes ahead as planned regardless of where the weddings are located. In the time I was there I saw a few things that could possibly affect the atmosphere of a wedding or reception.
If you would like to know whats on when I saved approx 10 days worth of Dreams entertainment news sheets from my stay.
Excursions and sightseeing: 10/10
I will post a full review of all our excursions in the main Riviera Maya section but we really enjoyed everything we did.
Hidden Worlds Cenotes
Playa Del Carmen
Diving both in Playa Del Carmen and with Dreams Diveshop
The main thing is that the hotel is really well organised in this respect. All the fares from the hotel are regulated so your driver knows what he will be paid, no haggling, no hassle. For return journeys you pay the driver when you return to the resort. We hadn't organised transport for the majority of our trips and we just went to the bellboys in reception and within minutes they had organised cabs, mini buses etc.
As you exit the gates the security take the taxi drivers name and ID and also the guests room number. They do the same on the way in, kind of like a clocking in system and also in case you have any complaints about your driver they have his details so you always feel really safe. It seems to be a system the taxi drivers respect and are familiar with so I really dont think any of them will be willing to ruin there livelihood with negative feedback.
MORE TO COME....
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