Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Reviews

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Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa  

Blvd. Kukulkan Km. 14.5 Zona Hotelera | Retorno Sn. Miguelito Lt. 37, Cancun 77500, Mexico

"My review of golden parnassus"
Posted by: gary  on Dec 28, 2010
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Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Reviews
Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Pictures and Information
Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Cancun Mexico

#13
of 53 Hotels in Cancun

User rating 4.4

Based on 7 reviews

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Information


Surrounded by breathtaking blue lagoons and white sandy beaches, this adult only All Inclusive Resort is located in a privileged position of Cancun

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Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Reviews

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.4 of 5 7 reviews
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"My review of golden parnassus"

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  gary  on Dec 28, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Dec, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
322 people found this review helpful

My family arrived 12/22/10 and left 12/27/10. the golden parnassus is a small resort of about 250 rooms. i thought the resort was beautiful and all the workers (mexicans) are extremely friendly. the resort had only one pool and its wasn't heated and actually seemed a little cool. The hot tub didn't even work the entire stay. They only have one hot tub. I was very disappointed the hot tub wasn't working. As a matter of fact, i talked to many vacationers that have stayed at the golden parnassus previously and they said the hot tub is always that temperature every year. just slightly warm around 85 degrees.

the beach is beautiful with picture perfect ocean views. The sun rise and sun set is eye catching. The resturants on ground are very good. The breakfast and lunch buffet's are supper good. The barn resurant has great steaks and quick service. Shangre li has excellen food but the service is exremely slow. allow about two hours for dinner there. Pier 12 the sea food resturant was ok with very small portions of food. The suma resturant was ok with slow service as well. The have a resturant called the breeze open 24 hours and serves hamburgers, cheece steaks, nachos, french fries, etc. pretty good and fast.

if you like to drink, be prepared for all drinks to be waters down and they use cheap alcohol. all drinks are served in small 6 once plastic cups. I'm really not a big drinker and i had many drinks and didn't even get a buzz on. yhr premises are well kepted and clean. rooms are very nice but lighting is on the poor side. maid service was very good.

i would go back and stay again. the crowd seemed mostly young to middle age with a few topless bathers during our stay.

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"A very positive experience"

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Catherine _New Brunswick  on Apr 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
325 people found this review helpful

Arrival:
My husband and I arrived late due to flight delay. Cancun airport is impressive and modern and the transportation to our hotel took about 15min. We arrived at the resort at 1:30 and were quickley escorted to our room. We stayed on the Club level on the sixth floor. We were famished and ordered room service which arrived promptly. Upon arrival we were amazed to find fresh fruit and a bottle of champagne waiting for us, along with fresh flowers.

Rooms:
Our room was beautiful; bed was comfortable,huge tv with satellite,coffee maker, fully stocked fridge and large jacuzzi. The view of the ocean and pool was gorgeous--great way to wake up everyday.It was very clean and the bathroom was spacious. We did have some water on the bathroom floor a couple of mornings, but it didn't faze us.

Restaurants and Bars:
the food at this resort, and in Cancun itself was great. The Paradise buffet had plenty of choices and is open fromearly morning till 4:30. Staff here were a wee bit...choosey. We ate at all the restaurants. Pier 12 offers seafood/pasta--the crab cakes and grouper are awesome. Opt for balcony seating at lunch.Sumo (Japanese was extremely good--we loved the dumplings and spring rolls. Old Barn serves steaks and my filet was perfectly cooked. We ate at Shangra-La twice and were only there 1-1 half hours and had very good meals. You have to wear a shirt with a collar and pants if you're a man, but so what? It's nice to get out of a bathing suit. Being on Club level we also went on a lunchtime cruise which was a lot of fun. Bar service and lunch were good and the entertainment was lively. We were always served prompltly at all the bars. Dirty Monkeys were my favourites!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
It is very windy along this stretch and the surf is high and rough. Red flag everyday. The beach is narrow but chairs were plentiful and the beach bar was convenient. The pool is smallish, but very clean and lively. Shade hard to find, but they will put umbrellas up. Loys of steps, but that was good for exercise. The mean age at this resort was about 40-50, so if you're in your 20's you might be bored. Grounds are well maintained--someone was always cleaning and/or repairing something.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
we left the resort everyday. Bus stop a short 5 min walk to the Blvd--take the bus!! It is 7 pesos and is a wild wild ride, but is very safe and best way to see the Hotel Zone and downtown.One comes along every few min. We went to Kulkukan Plaza and las Isla Village mall-both gorgeous with plenty of shopping. We took an excursion to Isla Mujueres ourselves-bus was 60 pesos round trip to Embarcadero and ferry, 9:30,11:00 etc was 7.00 US round trip. It is an amazing place! We walked to North Beach and ate at a restaurant right on the beach then rented longers. The water is beautiful, calm, tourquois and shallow. Interesting characters to watch and great shopping.We also spent a day at The Great Parnassus and we loved it! It is like a giant stationary cruise ship with fabulous restaurants and facilities. We hung out at the adults only poola dn the VIP room on the 10th floor. We ate at Portofino. The whole palce was impressive-they have their own food court with some excellent choices. Better beach for walking too.

Other Comments:
All in all we enjoyed our stay-very positive experience. We went downtown on the bus and walked around Ave Talum.No problems at all. Found everywhere to be safe. The hotels were clean, well laid out pleasing. The shows were well done, the staff helpful and english speaking for the most part.We usually go to the Dominican so that was a nice change. We exhanged money at the front desk, the rate was favorable.Gift shops were well stocked and not too expensive. You can spend a lot of money in Cancun if you choose to.The sun is very hot and I burned even with 60 sunblock. Never wore a sweater once, or even a tshirt. The guest relations people were very helpful. Don't be afraid to explore the area. We went out one night to the Forum area and it was packed with all ages. The whole area seemed very safe. All in all a great vacation. I would recommend the hotel for sure.

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"We had a very relaxing time"

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Shelley_South Dakota  on Feb 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
330 people found this review helpful

Arrival: Feb 6th - 11th
We arrived at 1:30 rooms not ready until 3 but go to the tiki bar and wait they are awesome at that bar especially alfonso when we went to get our key we asked to see an ocean view room that we might want to upgrade but the view and room were great

Rooms
Room was great bed a little hard not bad tho


Restaurants and Bars
Tiki bar by far best bar during the day staff was awesome friendly funny it was cool at night so we didn"t spend anytime there at night but again best bar on the resort

Beach/Pools/Grounds
Pools were great had to get up early to get a chair lots of fun activities from the young staff they were fullf energy

Activities on and off the resort/hotel
My finance went deep sea fishing and had a great time his fish broke the line right at the edge of the boat but 2 of the other guys kept their tropy fish to mount kind of spendy to mount and send home but hey if it"s the only time you do it and want a fish on your wall go for it 1100-1300 to mount

Other Comments
There have been alot of negative comments about this resort but we had a very relaxing time and will go back again if you are 18=35 probably not wild enough for you although each nite at 11:00 pm they will take you to a different hot spot each nite we had a great time.

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"You won't be disappointed unless you are really, really picky."

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Estelle&Gary_Ohio  on Jun 1, 2007  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jun, 2007 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
305 people found this review helpful

Arrival:
We stayed at the Golden Parnassus from May 6-13, 2007. We didn't experience any major problems during our stay, nor were we hassled in any way about taking the optional tour of the Great Parnassus, their brand new family oriented sister hotel. Just say no! Our Apple Vacations rep at the hotel, Fabian, was very nice and helpful.

We arrived in the early evening and got our room keys right away. Our room was a club ocean room on the 6th floor, very nice, very clean room, absolutely gorgeous view of the pool and ocean. Club rooms include robes, slippers and a large jacuzzi tub, which for some reason we didn't get around to using. The only thing not working properly in the room was the bathroom exhaust fan, which made a loud squealing noise. We didn't think it was a big deal, we just didn't use it. I thought the air conditioner was loud but after a day or two I didn't notice; it didn't bother Gary - he thought it was soothing. The A/C turns off when you open the sliding glass door to the balcony so when you come back in make sure you slaim the sliding glass door to make sure it turns on again. Our king bed was great, there had been complaints that the beds were too hard. A mattress pad was already on it which made it a little softer. Our room was made up every day and the first few days we got the cute little towel animals and rose pedals on the bed (nice touch). The TV worked great, fridge was filled with beer, juice, soda and water every day. There are two small elevators at this hotel, which is good.

This hotel is not new but it is very clean and well maintained. It has a very casual and laid back atmosphere, even though it was obvious there were some partiers there, which didn't bother us any. It is open air practically everywhere (lobby, floors) so it can get pretty warm. Everywhere in the hotel the staff is friendly and very helpful. The service in the restaurants and bars is absolutely outstanding. Actually, I thought everywhere we went in Cancun the locals were nice, helpful and very friendly.

Food:
The food in all the restaurants is just okay - nothing to write home about. We both wished that they would open the Paradise buffet a couple of times during the week in the evenings - it is only open for breakfast and lunch. There is air conditioning or if you prefer to sit closer to the windows (and smoke) there is an area where it isn't air conditioned (can be a little warm at lunch). The food at the buffet was great for both breakfast and lunch, lots of selections (except for pizza, wished they had more). We had cheeseburgers and nachos at the Breeze snack bar close to the pool, which were good. Never had a problem getting chairs at the poor or the beach. The huts on the beach were really nice - you can pull your chair out in the sun and pull it back in when you need some shade - great! The pool is small but nice. The entertainment staff is great - there was water volleyball and other games, which they always came around and asked if you wanted to participate but weren't pushy about it. We felt they should have more than one bartender at the lobby and Tiki bars, especially during busier times. They had nightly entertainment that started at 10p but it was not directly in the hotel but across from the entrance and down a flight of stairs.

We at at Pier 12 (seafood) a couple of times, which was good, though we thought their salad bar should have more offerings. The Old Barn (steakhouse) was okay - I had ribeye which was a little salty but otherwise okay. We had an inproom gourmet meal from Shangri-La (included when you stay in the club rooms), which was very good. But by far our favorite was Sumo, the Japanese restaurant. Gary loved the sushi (I don't) and I had the teriyaki chicken which was very good. We both absolutely loved the spring rolls. Plus they play nice, soothing music in all of the restanrants, which I liked.

Included with our club room was a lunch on the Cancun Queen, which goes up and down the lagoon - this was a blast! Open bar, lunch, beautiful scenery, the entertainment staff had games planned - we really had a good time! It really is worth taking this lunch cruise just to get to see Cancun from the water along with all of the waterfront homes and condos.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The hotel has a really nice gift shop and jewelry store with very reasonable prices. Off site, there are lots of places to shop. We went to the Plaza Fiesta, where they have lots of neat things to look at and buy at reasonable prices, and an open air market called Coral Negro where you can bargain. La Isla Mall is the newest, open air mall, and is huge.

Tip: Take between $50-$100 in $1 bills for tips - the front desk would not give out US change. They will give pesos and have the exchange rates posted.

Don't be afraid to take the bus - 65 pecos (65 cents US). Great way to get around the hotel zone and downtown but hang on, especially when the bus stops. Plus you never have to wait too long to get one. We went into Cancun just along Tulum Avenue and found a little place where they had outside seating - had some chips and salso and some Dos Equis (Mexican beer). We had salso at several local places, which was absolutely wonderful - always made fresh.

We did the excursion to Chichen Itza thru Apple Vacations - it was well worth the monty. We went on an air-conditioned bus, had snacks and beer, soda or water, plus they gave you water when you arrived (which believe me you'll need). We had a very knowledgeable tour guide, time on our own to explore, lunch and a chance to swim in a cenote (sinkhole). Caution - it is very, very hot there with little shade so make sure you wear light clothing, plenty of sunscreen, hat and sunglasses. And drink lots of water!! We also spent a day at Isla Mujeres, absolutely beautiful and is a must do. You don't need to do an excursion, just go over yourself by ferry ($15 round trip per person from the hotel zone). You can walk to North Beach (Playa Norte), which is absolutely beautiful, very shallow water, clean and calm, and rent a couple of loungers and unbrella for $15. There are lots of places to eat, drink, and shop. We wented a golf cart for 1 hr ($15) and explored the island a little bit. Had more chips and salso at Ballyhoo, a small restaurant right on the water by the ferry docks; be sure to try the fish tacos!

Conclusion:
Again, I can't stress enough about the friendly staff and excellent service at the Golden Parnasses. This is a small resort so even when it's full I don't think it would seem crowded. Plus there were people of all ages (we're in our 50's) and from lots of different countries (England, Scotland, Wales, Canada). The hotel is located back off of the main road and is a good 10 minute walk up to catch a bus. I would not recommend this hotel if you have any type of physical handicap or limitation - there are lots of steps to get to the pool and beach, in addition to walking to catch a bus.

One of the reasons we chose the Golden Parnasses was because it was all inclusive, adults only. There were a few women who were topless at the pool. Even though we may or may not choose to stay there in the future (we like to try different places) we would still recommend giving it a try. You won't be disappointed unless you are really, really picky - if that's the case, there is a Ritz-Carlton next door you can stay at.

Out of 5, we would rate as follows: Value - 5; Service - 5; Rooms - 4.5; Location - 4.5; Cleanliness - 4.5; Check-in/front desk - 4.5

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"Pros out weight the cons and it was totally Paradise."

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Liz&Gary_ Canada  on Apr 1, 2006  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2006 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
306 people found this review helpful

We have also travelled to Secrets Excellence, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and El Dorado Royale, Mayan Riviera, Mexico both adults only. This resort was wonderful to us too like the other ones.

Arrival:
Cancun Airport was totally renovated and looks great. This time from the plane to the terminal you take a bus then go through customs, grab your baggage and off you go to your resort (remember don’t get caught up with any informational people in the airport).

We arrived at Golden Crown Paradise (GCP) at 10:00 am (bonus an extra day). We were greeted with a cocktail, bracelets, and a pager as we stayed in the Golden Club Ocean View Rooms. Our room wasn’t ready when we arrived, no problem as we are used to this as they are usually not available until 3:00 pm. Usually you need to continue to check in with the front desk to see when your room is available throughout the day at GCP we were given a pager and when our room was ready it lit up. At 2:00 pm, we went to the front desk and received our key, safe lock and returned the pager. Then off to our room we went, and the bell boy brought our luggage to the room.

Rooms:
The room was beautiful! We were on the sixth floor (golden crown room) with the most beautiful view that we have ever seen of the ocean. The following was only in the crown rooms: we were greeted with a basket of fresh fruit, a bottle of champagne, in our room there was a king size bed, a 2 man Jacuzzi looking out at the ocean, bar fridge, and coffee maker. We enjoyed the Jacuzzi in the morning while having our coffee. We also had the option of the Queen Cancun luncheon cruise on the lagoon, and an in-room gourmet meal, but we passed on these two options. The room service menu was the most extensive menu we’ve ever seen you could have anything 24h a day anywhere from a club sandwich to a Japanese meal including sushi.

Dining:
n the morning, we ordered in room service twice, and the other times went to La Place for breakfast, which was buffet all food freshly prepared while you wait ie. omelette’s, French toast, waffles, etc. the waiters served the coffee and Mimosa to us.

At lunch, we usually would grab from the snack bar - - hamburger without the bun, nacho chips with the best salsa, and one day the best BBQ chicken wings. One day, we checked out La Place and couldn’t believe the buffet, you could have anything freshly prepared while you wait ie. Japanese, Chinese, Mexican, Italian, Canadian, you name it they even had a whole turkey.

Dinner time you had the choice of Pier 12 (seafood and steaks), The Old Barn (steaks and Mexican), the Sumo (Japanese), and the Shangri-La restaurant. We tried them all out except the Shangri-La restaurant as it was a fine dining 3 hour meal we were informed about. The best was Pier 12 for their Boston clam chowder soup it was the best that we’ve ever ate, and the steaks at all places melted in your mouth. We lucked in that the Sumo restaurant opened the week before we arrived.

Facilities:
The resort was smaller and more intimate then what we have stayed in within the past years. The resort was lengthwise to the ocean, which allowed a beautiful view of the ocean from most locations on the resort especially our room. The grounds were very clean always someone working on them.

Entertainment:
The entertainment crew (Carlos, Johnny, Helen (from England), and Celine (from Canada)) did an excellent job of keeping everyone entertained throughout the day.

We saw the Hurricane Wilma slide presentation in the evening that provided you with some information before/after the hurricane. It was very interesting. Our sixth floor was totally taken by the hurricane and redone, and the land between the ocean and lagoon was totally covered by water. As for the other evening shows, we didn’t see them, but heard that they were very good.

Service:
The service was very impressive; Lily and Christina (our pool/beach waitresses) were excellent they always were there with our drinks and a little conversation. We received big hugs from them on the day we were leaving that was really special. The bartenders were excellent too when you got down to ½ a glass they had a new glass for you without even asking for it. The first resort we’ve hit that served Corona on tap.

Security:
We felt like we had our own body guards with the security this year, the reason was that our Prime Minister Harper, President Bush, and President Fox stayed at Le Meridien the resort beside us. So, we had Mexican Police watching our resorts, gun boats out on the ocean, and helicopters different times in the air patrolling the President. It was very interesting.

Ocean:
We were lucky with the ocean too as it was rebuilt the week before we arrived due to the Hurricane. The ocean was gorgeous, but we now know to be careful with the undertow as it is extremely strong. Two guys were taken by it, thankfully the lifeguard saved them, but it was an extremely close call.

Departure:
We were picked up at the resort at 7:15 am. This allowed sometime to get a bite to eat before we left the resort. We arrived at the airport, and although there were many people in front of us as when we arrived 2h prior to departure we were through the check-in line within 10 minutes. Due to airport renovations all prices have increased, lesson learned better to purchase gifts at resort now rather than airport.

Summarization:
Pros: no reservations required for dinner, the best ever pool/beach waitress service, no towel cards and as many as you want per day, and lounge chair availability anytime - - no need to get up and reserve chairs, and excellent food.

Cons: smaller/cooler pool, and key instead of electronic number pad on safe

Pros out weight the cons and it was totally Paradise, and we would totally recommend it to anyone. We look forward to returning to it in the future.

Hello from Canada to:
Don & Vicki from Iowa
Paul & Trevor (buddies) from England
Jane & Tarzan from Wisconsin
Shar & Kyle

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"Our stay at Golden Crown Paradise"

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  James&Sarah  on Apr 1, 2005  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Apr, 2005 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
351 people found this review helpful

Arrival:
Golden Crown Paradise
Stay: Sunday August 29th, 2004
Room: 102
Guests: 1 26yr male, 1 27yr female

We booked 2 nights at the GCP but only received 1 because they were overbooked and bumped us to their sister hotel. This isn't really a problem, and we loved the GCP when we got to it. We arrived around 12:30 on Saturday, got our stuff checked at Bell because the room wasn't ready, and had a look around. Everything is very easy to find. Outside the main entrance, is the steakhouse (cool atmosphere), tennis courts, and theatre. Inside the main door is the front desk on the left, and the beer garden on the right. further in (the lobby is shaped like a plus symbol) there's a statue in the centre. To the left from here is the mini-golf, with the business centre at the very end. To the right is the lobby bar, and the entrance to the buffet. in the far end of the plus, is the shops on the left and right, with the stairs to the gym and spa on the right. There's an exit, which leads to stairs to the pool area. Down the stairs is the pool (divided in to quiet and activity areas by a bridge) and a smaller, shallow, lounger pool to the left of the main pool. Across the bridge is the stairs to the beach. To the right of the stairs from the hotel is the snack bar and the gourmet restaurant entrance. To the left of the lounger pool is the pool bar (no swim-up bar) and the seafood restaurant. When you go down to the beach, there are several rows of palapas for shade, then a beautiful, vast beach. This hotel is built further back form the water then some others, so there is quite a bit of beach.

Our room was great. Tap water is purified but gross. Ran into the same problem as CPC, the water coolers either have great water or gross water. We had a ground floor room, but they gave us a jacuzzi to make up for the bumping. Wow! My GF loved it! Down at the pool and beach, they provide drink and even sometimes snack service. The snack bar has the usual nachos, burgers, hot dogs, etc. Watch your footing in here. The exhaust hood above the grill isn't vented, so all the grease stays in the room. The ceiling, walls, and floor are very greasy. You can see the grease stain extending about 1/2 a metre out from the entrance. We lazed away some time exploring, then got our room, and had lunch at the snack bar. We checked out the various restaurants and decided on Pier 12 for dinner because of the patio overlooking the beach. Then it was down to the pool and beach for some relaxing. Back to the room for a jacuzzi bubble bath and get ready for dinner. We decided to stop at the pool bar for a drink before dinner as it was early (we didn't need reservations though! Excellent.) Watch out for Jose at the pool bar. We ordered one drink each and our order was doubled because it was suddenly "happy hour" (which means they made to much drink so we get extra). I tried another drink that someone else had, and then randomly a couple more drinks arrived for us. Jose is a great bartender, a hoot to watch, and very friendly to talk to. Try his Bahama Mamas and grasshoppers.

Dinner and Breakfast and Departure:
We staggered up to Pier 12 for dinner. We had stopped in earlier to check out the menu. The man (I missed his name) who saw us then was also our server. He was also super-friendly, helping us to make a food decision and also to learn some more Spanish. If you only have one night here, make sure you eat at Pier 12. The patio over the ocean is beautiful, the sunset is reflected in the clouds, the moon comes out. it was the most romantic dinner of my life. After dinner, more drinks at the pool bar, then we tried to get changed for fantasy casino night but jet lag and Jose's drinks caught up with us.

Sunday morning I checked out the gym which is well equipped. We had breakfast in the buffet - good, great selection, made to order smoothies, omelettes, pancakes, etc.. More pool time, then we checked out, and went for lunch at the buffet. Very good, numerous cook-to-order station (Mexican, oriental, pasta, and stir-fry Mexican.) Don't touch the Sushi though - it's not kept cold enough to be safe. Then we were off walking out the front (the hotel is on a little side street so it's about 2 blocks to the main street, Boulevard Kulkulcan) and down to the bus stop. We caught the city bus for 6.5 pesos each to the bus terminal where we got our bus to Playa Del Carmen. This tale is continued there under "RIU Tequila" Overall I would rate this a strong 4 star, but lacking a few little things to make it a 5 star.

Any questions or to see pictures, email me sparky4@telus.net http://www.crownparadise.com.mx

Food:
Good. The buffets had great selection, snack bar was fresh cooked, Pier 12 was good (and I don't like fish, so...) nice thing about the a la carte restaurants was there was several choices in each category. The gourmet restaurant had a different menu posted for each day, and the steakhouse had lots to choose from (steak, chicken, ribs, burgers, etc.)

Drinks:
Very Strong. Ask Jose for his Bahama Mama.

Staff:
Super-friendly, always willing to help us with our fledgling Spanish. We're not big on tipping at all-inclusives (and I have a coworker with family who works here. At the major resorts, the staff DO NOT make only $5 a day.) and we never felt like we needed to or that we were being served less because of it. Had we been here longer I probably would have left something for Jose.

Beach:
Beautiful, clean and vast. Lots of Palapas for shade, and loungers

Pool:
Smaller then other hotels, but sufficient.

Great things about CPC:
The staff, the lack of reservations for the a la cartes, the variety on the menu at the restaurants, the beach, the ultra-romantic Pier 12 setting. Tap water is purified but gross

Not-so-great things:
The purified water sometimes tastes pretty bad. Not as much choice of restaurants as some hotels. Dinner buffet was closed on Sunday night. Snack Bar grill needs to be exhausted to avoid the grease issues. There's no map or services directory. Room Service is supposed to be included, but there was nothing in the room to indicate so.

Restaurant info:
Paradise Buffet: breakfast, lunch and dinner buffet. Was closed Sunday night.
Pier 12: Seafood restaurant overlooking the beach. Good menu selections, great food, salad bar instead of preset salad.
Old Barn: Steak House. Great atmosphere.
The Breeze (las Brisas): Daytime snack bar, buffet style. Good snacks, by the pool. International gourmet. new menu daily.
The Place: snack bar/a la carte dinner. From their website picture, looks to be at the lobby bar, but the staff have never heard of it.
Afternoon tea: Held at Beer Garden at 17:00 daily.

Bar info:
Lobby Bar outside the main buffet.
Beer Garden/bar to right of main entrance when you first enter.
The Breeze / Las brisas: Small bar at the snack bar
Pool Bar: very close to both pool and beach.

Amenities info:
Pool: 1, split roughly 60/40 by bride to beach. One side activities, the other quiet. A small lounger pool next to it.
Gym: full set of cardio and weight equipment.
Spa: extra charge.
Mini-golf
Shuttle to Marina and sister hotel for activities and use of facilities.
Business centre.

General Tips:
1) When shopping, catching a taxi, etc. You will usually be given the opportunity to pay in US dollars or in pesos, and for simplicity most people use a 10 to 1 exchange rate. ie. 100 pesos, $10 US. Since you should be getting 11 pesos to the US dollar or more at the exchange house (the best rate I got was 11.28 at Scotiabank in Playa Del Carmen) by paying in pesos you're getting about a 10 % discount. Whenever possible, use your pesos instead of US cash or even instead of credit cards. In chain stores like Plaza La Fiesta (a tourist shop) you'll notice on the price tag they've factored in a proper exchange rate.

2) Tours: unless you are rich or really need the guided package, everything is more affordable to go on your own. Some examples: Bus tour from Playa Del Carmen / Playacar resorts to see the Tulum ruins is US$49 per person including lunch. On your own: round trip taxi from hotel to bus terminal, first class bus round trip to tulum, shuttle train to the ruins, entrance to the ruins, total for two people $28 US. Similar prices apply throughout the region.

3) Transport: At Cancun airport, you're pretty much stuck paying 90 pesos per person for a shared shuttle to your hotel, unless you leave the airport and get out to where the taxis are or beyond that to where the city bus runs. I didn't see any other option for that part of the trip. In the hotel zone, the city bus is 6.5 pesos (only 4.5 pesos if you're not in the hotel zone) or around 60 cents US. The R-1 and R-2 and I think R-27 go almost everywhere you'd want to, and the destinations are listed on the front of the bus. Wal-Mart, plaza Las Americas (big mall where the locals shop, including Chedraui market) and the Terminal Del Autobuses can all be reached by city bus. The Wal-Mart bus says Wal-Mart. For the bus depot, take an "Av. Tulum" bus and get off at Av. Uxmal. To get to Costco, get a taxi on the street from Wal-Mart for 15 pesos. Getting back to the hotel zone should be around 50 pesos. Returning to the airport from the hotel will be around 180 pesos. Taxis in the hotel zone, and shuttles at the airport, are fixed rates (each of the hotels will have a price list posted by the door). If the doorman summons the taxi for you then you should pay exactly that amount (again remember to pay in pesos to save money) but if you grab the taxi then it might be more. If you get a taxi in the city, or in Playa Del Carmen, or anywhere else, be sure you and driver agree on the rate before you go anywhere. It is negotiable, but not much. Tip is built in, you don't tip the cabbie. The intercity bus system is great. Service is provided from the bus terminal by ADO (1st class, A/C, etc.) and Riviera/MayaB (second class, more stops, etc.) There's also playa Express that is a shuttle and is cheaper. Sample rates: ADO 1st class, Cancun to Playa Del Carmen 32 Pesos every 20 minutes, same price returning every 10 minutes. The MayaB is about 12 pesos less, but less frequent. Playa Del Carmen to Tulum or Coba 32 pesos each way by ADO, less by MayaB. Playa Express should be less but I couldn't find their depot and didn't really care at these prices.

4) Alcohol: If you're buying alcohol, start at Costco, followed by Wal-Mart. Example prices: 1 litre Kahlua. At home about C$45. In the tourist stores and mini-marts, around 90 to 200 pesos. At Chedraui 81 pesos, At Wal-Mart, 73 pesos. At Costco 61 pesos. Likewise, Tequila starts at around 65 pesos per litre and goes up.

Things to bring with you:
Lots of sunscreen. We took 3.5 250ml bottles for 1 week, and went through 3 of them. I'd suggest taking a mix. We took SPF45 normal, SPF30 sport sweat proof, SPF30 eco-friendly (needed if you're going to one of the eco-parks.) Caution: Don't forget a hat, even in the pool, and sunscreen lip balm. If you put sunscreen on in the morning before dressing for breakfast, put more on when you take your shirt off at the pool. That's the only way we got burned was having our t-shirts absorb all the sun block off our shoulders. Also take after-sun gel and bug-bite cream just in case.
Disposable waterproof camera for pool, ocean activities, and snorkelling.
Thermal mugs for drinks at the pool. They hold more and keep things cold, and keep the sand and crawlies out of the drinks.
A backpack for carry water and stuff if you do a tour of the ruins.
Immodium, Tylenol, Pepto Bismol. Especially the tylenol! Instead of taking pepto or immodium every day as a precaution, start eating yoghurt every day 2 weeks before you go. You can continue this when you're there.
Lots of shorts and shirts because you'll sweat a lot. At least one pair of long pants and closed shoes for the men for dinner.
Chargers/spare batteries for any electronics, like digital cameras.

Any Questions, or to see pictures, please email me sparky4@telus.net

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"Back from 2 fabulous weeks at the GCPS"

Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa
User Rating:  Golden Parnassus Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Karen&Alain_Ontario  on Apr 1, 2005  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2005 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
343 people found this review helpful

My husband and I just got back from 2 fabulous weeks at the GCPS . We had a wonderful time and we are very happy with the resort (we travel for 2 weeks every year in the Caribbean). We chose this resort as it offered: Adults only experience, no reservations for the a la cartes and we wanted to stay on the Cancun strip.

Rooms:
The resort is small, room capacity of about 214 or so. We ended up getting an Ocean view room, it may help if you specifically ask for an even room number as the Ocean views are all even numbered. The room was standard and it provided purified water in the washroom (sink), but I didn't care for the taste, too much chlorine. The hotel offers room service (incl.) and we ordered room service for breakfast one day. We chose the American breakfast - eggs, toast, sausages, coffee with a side order of fresh fruit. Unfortunately everything was pretty much cold, except for the coffee, we thought we'd try the Continental next time, but we never got around to it. The menu's for the breakfast are posted on your doorhandle. You can also get meals at other times, we did not see those menus, but other people mentioned getting dinners and lunches in their rooms. The bathroom was spacious enough, the hair dryer can run pretty hot so watch your scalp. Maid service was excellent. One day our room door didn't lock (we check to make sure it's locked everytime we leave). We informed the front desk and within minutes a serviceman was up there fixing the lock - we never had any other problems once it was fixed.

Restaurants:
Pier 12 - Seafood Restaurant (a la carte) Open for lunch and dinner. They have an indoor and an outside area for seating. The outside overlooks the ocean and beach, very beautiful. The menu changes about once a week and contains mostly seafood dishes but you can get chicken and pasta dishes there also - wonderfully decadent chocolate mousse dessert. The food is very good - you can have shrimp, crab, lobster and scampi - and, they don't charge you "extra".

The Steakhouse (a la carte) Great decor, loved the (fake) elk antler chandeliers. The food was very good, you have to order the Rib Steak - best steak on the menu - again no extra for "fine" cuts of meat.

Shangri-La - Gourmet fine dining (a la carte) This had to be our favourite. The menu changed daily and was posted outside near the pool area. The food was exquisite, a 5 course set menu - appetizers, salads, soups, entrée's and desert, with a choice of about 2 - 3 options for each, except for the Entrée's which offered about 5 choices. We liked getting one dessert and splitting it and enjoying it with our bailey's and coffee. If you 're feeling adventurous, we suggest that you ask for a Mayan coffee - wonderful tasting and very interesting to watch them prepare it. The food is very rich at this restaurant so watch your waist line :-).

Paradise (buffet) Great selection for breakfast and lunch. We liked it due to the fact that the main food was prepared on the grill while you watched and not sitting in warm-up bins. The omelettes are huge, but very tasty. The outer seating area overlooks the ocean and pool - beautiful. Gets really hot sitting at the windows (they open) in the morning after the sun rises.

Breezes (outside grill) Great for hotdogs, hamburgers, wings, chicken fingers and fresh tuna and chicken sandwiches. There is also another bar located here - doesn't get used much. The floor (blue tile they put down) can be a bit slippery due to the grease that has come off the grill. We used to grab our food and take it back to our loungers with us, or you can eat at breezes, tables and chairs are provided.

Pool:
Good size pool with a small round wading pool beside it. Most people were putting loungers in the wading pool and sunning themselves there, others would grab a book or a drink and meet others for chit chats. The main pool has two sides, one side is used mostly for the games and activities, leaving the other side for those who want a leisurely swim. I loved getting in there after breakfast at around 8:00 for doing laps, pretty quiet (you have the pool mostly to yourself ). The entertainment staff, have a multitude of poolside games for those who wish to get involved from volleyball, water polo, Frisbee toss, races, aerobics, stretching - yoga and some tequila volley ball games. There are plenty of loungers and you can request an umbrella to help protect you from the suns rays. There is a top side area that is under a protective wooden slat roof, were you can sit on loungers and be mostly protected from the sun if you want. Towels are provided and can be changed daily.

Beach:
Nice length of beach front area, many palapas and loungers along with it's own bar complete with swings instead of seats. The ocean was beautiful and the waves alot of fun to play in. Watch for the undertow on the windy days - red flags are indicated.

Jacuzzi:
Nice and hot, just down from the pool area, overlooking the beach and ocean and a good size. The downside was that it didn't give the impression that it was very sanitary.

Bars:
Tiki Bar -poolside, you can hear many of parties going on in the evening here, the bartenders were super.
Kiosko - Main lobby bar, you can always find a bunch of people having after pool/before dinner and after drinks.
Beer Gardens - Place to hang out to shoot some pool, watch a game on the big screen TV, play some cards, dance, and where they do the Casino night. The bartender was fabulous !
Breezes bar - We didn't really use that much

Miscellaneous stuff:
The Animation/Entertainment staff of; Jonathan, Carlos, Alfredo, Katie and Lauren were superb ! From the poolside activities to bar hoping at night they really make the vacation a blast ! Note: we didnt make it to any of the evening shows (start time approx. 10 pm) but the word out on these from others at the resort is that they were generally good.

If you go on a shopping trip, don't bother with cabs - really, your going to waste some hard earned cash on the cab rides. The city bus, which you can grab oh.. about every few minutes and about every 30 sec. near the shopping centres are cheap, safe and very easy to use. The bus costs about 65 cents US ea per person (6.5 pesos), the same trip by cab will cost you 20.00 US, with tip - one way. The hotel offers a free shuttle to two different shopping plaza's (the Flamingo on Mondays and the Caracol on Thursdays), all you have to do is catch the bus back. You pick up and get off the city bus at the front of the Ritz Carleton hotel- it's next door to the Golden Crown Paradise & Spa. The GCPS resort has some gift shops (3), and the jewellery store was offering half off prices when we were there, I'm pretty sure it's a weekly thing as others mentioned they got things half off also.

Some side trips: Xcaret - great park to see the Mayan culture - don't miss the show at night, Xel ha, great place to snorkel, dolphin swimming and long lazy tube rides, food is really good here. Chichen Itza - wonderful huge archaeological site. Captain Hook Pirate show - steak and lobster dinner with a pirate show/booze cruise. Isla Mujeres, catch a boat ride to the island where you can snorkel, swim, canoe, take your picture with a sand shark and do some shopping.

We will definately being keeping this resort in mind as one of our "must return to" vacations.

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