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Just back from 6 day trip to Cozumel. Stayed at the Occidental Grand for the first time. Impressions: Nice rooms, fair service, completely unimpressed with the food. For some reason, this resort is very stingy about giving you change for large bills. We had a difficult time tipping the staff since we didn't always have small bills. Next time we'll carry more change.
Dove with Blue XT Sea. Fantastic experience. We dove with divemasters Arturo and Pedro. We couldn't have asked for better service or guidance. Arturo happens to be a biologist and is great at answering questions about critters you've seen on the dive. Pedro is a fish and is very good at spotting things you might not otherwise find yourself.
I must mention a restaurant we discovered about a 5 minute walk down the beach (south near Iberostar) from the Occidental Grand. It is called Alberto's. It is open air and we sat at a table on the beach several feet from the water. Alberto will show you the fish available so you can see for yourself how fresh it is. My husband and I shared a whole red snapper. It was definitely one of the top ten meals I've ever eaten -- that includes very nice restaurants in major cities in the US. His wait staff is accommodating and entertaining. In my opinion, Alberto's is a "must do" if you're staying on the south side of the island.
I have stayed at the Grand a few times and allways had a good time, though after a few days I too got tired of the food. Allways rented a car then did the ride around the island thing. I have not tried Alberto's but from your report I think we will next visit. The best thing about the lower resorts is the short rides to the reefs.
“From birth, man carries the weight of gravity on his shoulders. He is bolted to earth. But man has only to sink beneath the surface and he is free.” Jacques Cousteau Photos in my Gallery taken with Canon Powershot A720IS with Canon housing, no strobe.