Submitted by : Addict
Date: May 14, 2005
Type of Resort: Moderate - All Inclusive
Cost: (per night): $121.43/night per diver (includes meals, diving, room)
Comments on Check-in: Check-in was quick. They had staff waiting for us that took us to our room, and pointed to things (main office, lunch area) on the way. It almost seemed too quick. We just didn't get very much info and were left with some questions. Once escorted to our room, we found various forms on our bed waiting for us, but had little to no direction of where to deliver them. You could definitely infer what needed to be done, but I didn't feel overly welcomed or informed. Granted, we didn't have to stand in line to check-in, and our luggage had been delivered to our room, we felt that for a smaller resort, the check-in could have been a little friendlier.
Comments on staff: Most of the staff were very friendly. It did seem that the office staff were a little less interested in helping with requests, or slightly put off with us asking questions. This was just the feeling I got, but it wasn't overwhelming. Other then that, the cooks and bar staff were very friendly.
Food if All Inclusive: 5/10
Comments on food: The food was buffet style for every meal. Typically a chicken dish and a fish dish to choose from, with different sides like rice, salad, etc. (One staple that we noticed every lunch was tortillas, rice and red beans.) A couple of nights we did have a beef entrée to choose. Breakfast was scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, or ham, cereal & oatmeal, or you could have them make you an omelet, french toast, pancakes or waffle. The "made at your request" items were good...made from scratch pancakes.
The food wasn't bad, but it wasn't excellent either. I would just call it average. Drinks included were Iced Tea, Water, Lemonade, coffee, and hot tea. One drink aspect we enjoyed was that all of these beverages were out most all of the day. Juices were also offered in the morning. If you wanted something else (soda, beer, etc) you could purchase them at the bar. I drink a lot of Coke, so the $1 per coke wasn't too bad. Local beers were also reasonably priced 0 $1.75. And there was complimentary rum punch at the Friday Night party.
One thing that did bother me was that if you came in a little later for a meal, went through the buffet line, and went to an open table - many times there would be no silverware. Or as you were going through the buffet, items were gone and there was no plan to replace them. With no silverware, you were off to find the kitchen staff. The staff was usually behind the buffet line, so finding them generally wasn't a problem. I would say I had to get my silverware from them for about 7 or 8 meals. If they aren't going to replace the silverware on tables that people have eaten at, it would be nice if I could easily access the silverware. The kitchen staff was great. We did notice that they were willing to accommodate special diet needs, making a different dish all-together if necessary.
Also, if we had a packed meal room, I preferred to dump my dirty dishes somewhere (clean up my own table) so that families waiting on a table would have a clean table when we left. Sometimes this was not an option because they had a tiny little tub that was overflowing with dirty dishes most of the time. There were also occasional meals where dishes quickly piled up on our table, and with buffet-style dining, getting a new plate/bowl for a return trip, the table got rather crowded with more than two people. I'm not sure if they were short-staffed, or if this was a common occurance.
Overall I thought the meal process could be a little more user-friendly.
During our week, we saw two different people celebrate birthdays. The kitchen staff brought out cakes for both of them. I'm not sure how the families arranged this, but it was a nice, personal touch. So, if you are celebrating your birthday diving at CCV, first - you lucky duck! and second, make sure you check on getting a cake.
Hot Tub - Fitness Center - On-site Restaurants - On-site Bar - Other
Hot Tub: They did have a hot tub over the water, but we rarely saw anyone using it. When checking out the temperature several times, it seemed to be on the cool side.
Fitness Center: During our visit we did not get a chance to tour the center.
Spa: My wife and I did treat ourselves to a trip to the spa. We both received a 1 hour massage. I would have probably preferred mine to be a little deeper of a massage, but my wife enjoyed hers. We made the appointment just a day before the massage and had no trouble getting a time we wanted. We did have to give up our 4th dive of the day, but planned a night dive for after dinner. Here are the prices for the other spa services. I'm not a "spa expert," but I felt they are reasonably priced:
• 1 hour massage $40.00
• 1/2 hour massage $25.00
• Purifying Mineral Facial Mask $30.00
• Unique Lifting Facial Treatment $40.00
• Ultimate Tropical Facial W/ Reflexology $50.00
• Tropical Body Polish Treatment $50.00
• Ultimate Tropical Experience- Tropical Facial w/Reflexology $90.00
• Manicures $12.00
• Pedicures $18.00
Restaurants: Other than the buffet, there was no additional "formal" food offering on-site. They did have the "Hitching Post" which was a small snack shop. The resort did have an organized dinner out that you sign-up for. If you are interested, be sure to check the sign-up deadline. It was by noon the day prior to going out.
Gift Shop: There was a small gift shop that contained your typical tourist items, along with some of the essentials you may have left at home...shampoo, sunscreen, bug repellent, etc.
They did have Kayaks and a dinner on the small cay next to the resort. Personally, I prefer to eat indoors (away from the bugs) so we walked over to the cay, grabbed our food, and came back to the screened eating area. The gals at the front desk also arranged outings for those interested...rafting, island tour, canopy tours (zip line course), etc. As part of the various evening resort events, there were fire dancers, a local school-children performances, and of course...crab races. The Friday Night Party included free rum punch...yum!
A great aspect of CocoView resort was it's non-diving facilities. They offered a variety of activities for both non-divers, kids, and those of us who just wanted to enjoy the evening. A game room housed a ping-pong table, pool table, well stocked game shelf, and a small library. Above the game room was additional seating (for meals, briefings, hanging out, etc.). There was a TV for videos, and access to an outdoor deck. It was a great place to meet other people and just relax.
Room Overall: 4/10
Bed Quality: 2/10
Linen Quality: 5/10
Bathroom Quality: 3/10
Internet access available? Yes - but not in the room.
Type of Outlets: American compatible
Special gear storage? Not in the room.
Comments on the room: We stayed in room 20. Average sized with a view of the ocean...through the frosted french doors. It had an AC wall unit that struggled to keep the room cool. There was "jugged" water in each room. It had a small pump connected to it and was refilled upon request ($5.00 Charge). We always drank this water and didn't try the water from the faucet, though they said that their water supply was tested and fine to drink. It was nice to have the option of drinking tap-or-bottled water.
The Good: Our rooms were made up with new linens and towels daily. We had decent water pressure in the shower, and never ran out of hot water. The bathroom sink faucet water pressure and function was a different story - the whole faucet wasn't really attached to the sink, and was difficult to turn off.
The Bad: Very little storage...and it was even worse in other rooms. There was a small closet area, about 6 very small shelves, a table and a bench. My camera equipment usually had a place on the floor (the shelves and tables were occupied with our clothes and other small things). The shower drain was cracked to the point of almost breaking into the drain. I accidentally stepped on it once and my heel went into the drain - slightly painful. It really should be replaced.
We had a double bed and a single bed. So my wife and I slept in different beds. This is more my fault, as we did not get our reservations in early enough to get a king, and being put on a waiting list for cancellations did not pan out.
The Ugly: 2 ceiling fans inside were caked in dust - at least 1/4 of an inch of crap was piled on the blades. The AC didn't quite fit in the wall snugly, and the front doors had big gaps when closed. Not much of a bug barrier.
Near beach/diving/dive shop? On site diving, dive shop, and small beach areas.
Comments on location: Having 2 diving walls on site is a big boost for this resort. They also have a wreck that is just a beach dive away. You have unlimited air fills, so you can go diving at pretty much any time that you like. Prior to the trip, we had the impression that the gear storage and diving area were a little closer. The walk with all your gear on wasn't terrible, but not always fun either. Just something to keep in mind.
Available transportation/price: Free shuttle to and from the airport. It is nice how they pick you up at the airport helping you through customs/immigration. Very nice welcoming coming into a packed airport. Nora was great! She was always looking out for you and pointing you in the right direction.
Value for the price paid: 7/10
Overall rating: 6/10
Additional comments not listed above:
If you are a die hard diver (literally eat, sleep, dive) then this place can get you a good amount of diving for the price, if you don't mind average to below-average accommodations.
I have stayed at both Anthony's Key and CoCoView Resorts within the last 6 months - please see my Anthony's Key Review before making any decisions. I feel that the accommodations at Anthony's Key are far superior to those at CoCoView. Please also read the Dive Operation review for CoCoView, I feel the dive operation for CoCoView has a few highlights that overshadow AKR's.
If we came to Roatan again, I would most likely stay at Anthony's Key resort as opposed to CoCoView.
Do you have any tips or tricks that could help other people staying at this location? We were kind of hoping that we could get a dive in on our first day on the island if we got there early enough. This is not the case. You must wait for the next day to do a check-out dive before you can dive (kind of a waste of your arrival day). So whether you come early or late - don't plan on diving that day. We actually flew out of Colorado Springs at 6:30am to get down to Roatan early enough to get a dive in. As it turns out, we should have booked a later flight and not worried about getting up at 3am to get to the airport.
In our packing, we forgot towels. We rented some from the resort for $3.00 for the entire week. I was impressed that they were actual beach-towel size.
Upon our checkout, we were a little worried about our luggage. We were on a late afternoon flight and since checkout was at 11:00, we hung out at the resort during the day. This meant that all the guests leaving prior to us had their luggage out and about. At other resorts, our bags had actually been picked up at our door step...and we were told what time to have it all ready to go. At CocoView, we hauled our own bags down to the main level and over to the dock. Now, after getting them down, we were then told that we could set them in an area for the staff to take to the dock. Even after choosing to take them to the dock, there was still no rhyme or reason to where they were all put. People, including us, had taken pieces of paper, written their flight time on it, and then placed it under a luggage handle to notify CocoView staff. This may have been a unique incident, but we would have felt much more comfortable with being told specifically by the staff what to with our luggage, prior to morning of our departure.
If you don't already, use zip-ties on your luggage. Prior to this trip, we had always locked our checked baggage and had no problems once we handed them over to the airlines. On this trip, we had 3 of our 4 locks cut off in Houston on our return to the states. This was our own mistake and we plan to go with zip-ties on our future trips.
School supplies...bring them or cash! My wife is a teacher and asked her students to donate supplies prior to the trip. After the local Roatan school children performed, it was so fun to present them with bags of new school supplies. The looks on their faces were so moving. So, be sure to help them out! We often forget how fortunate we are in this country.
Bugs...we had taken the advice posted on another scuba board and packed a can of spray in our carry-on. Since it did take a little while for our luggage to get to our room (after dinner), we did find it helpful to spray down prior to eating. (Who doesn't love the smell of Off and dinner!) My wife and I were pretty religious in spraying at least our lower half (I went for full-body coverage). Unfortunately, I still came home with more bites. We both had a combo of mosquito and no-see-ums. We did have a fair amount of wind our entire trip, along with no rain, so these factors were probably in our favor.
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