In January 2012 Faber Photography went to Gran Bahia Principe Riviera Maya to photograph the lovely Cheryl & Aaron‘s wedding. While there, we decided to do a photo tour of the property to help future brides get a feel for the resort. We also wrote a review which can be viewed on the Best Destination Wedding Website. If you have any questions at all or would like us to photograph YOUR destination wedding, please contact us by clicking HERE!
Arriving in Cancun went smooth as always. My assistant pushed the dreaded RED button, but after a quick luggage search we were out the doors to find our transportation. We had a private van booked through Olympus tours. They were very easy to find (bright orange shirts), extremely friendly, and spoke great English. Our van ride to the Gran Bahia Principe resort took one hour and fourteen minutes… not that I was timing or anything!
Pulling into the driveway of the main Akumal Lobby, you’ll see this!
Check in will be immediately on your right hand side.
If you continue past the check in, you’ll have an open air hallway that leads to Bar Pakal. This is the rain location for weddings.
When you continue past the bar, you’ll come to the Hollywood Theater. Every evening there will be a different show taking place here.
Lobby Bar Tulum is located in the back of the theater. Wedding cocktail hours will often happen in this bar.
Just around the corner from the Tulum Lobby Bar is the children’s club. The facility is both indoors and outdoors and appears to have a lot of great toys and activities!
If you take a left in the lobby instead of going towards check in, you’ll walk past a few stores and the Riviera Buffet.
If we continue our tour beyond these stairs, you’ll see stairs heading downstairs to the fitness center.
If you turn around and look behind you instead of going down the stairs to the fitness center, you will see the Akumal main pool. This is a free form pool with many bridges, a swim up bar, and ample lounge chairs.
This is also the location for the outdoor wedding receptions. The following pictures are the area where the poolside receptions take place as well as the White Sands Pool Bar which will be the bar serving the reception.
Just to the left of the poolside reception area is an outdoor massage area provided by the Bahia Spa.
And on the other side of the path, is the actual Bahia Spa.
If we proceed down the path, we will come upon the Arlequin Restaurant. HERE is a menu for all the restaurants.
And the beautiful view from the Arlequin Restaurant
Across from the Arlequin Resturant is the entrance to the beach. This section of the beach has a pier which is great for snorkling, a manacured sand area for children to play in, and Bar El Mar (the swing bar).
A quick walk along the beach will take you to Frutos Del Mar. This is one of the wedding reception dinner locations.
When we visited the restaurant in May 2014, it appears they had done a little remodel. The chairs are much more neutral and perfect for a wedding reception!
Frutos Del Mar overlooks the activity pool.
The activity pool doesn’t have a swim up bar, but it does have Pool Bar Coral.
This is also the location of the activity crew and the children’s pool. The children’s pool is about a foot and a half deep.
Dolce Vita is the next restaurant. It overlooks the children’s pool and is another wedding reception location.
In May 2014 the Dolce Vita Restaurant also appeared to have undergone a renovation, so the chairs now look like the picture below.
Beyond the Dolce Vita Restaurant is the 24 hour snack bar, Acuario.
The 24 snack bar is also the location that your guests will meet or be dropped off for your Akumal beach wedding at the hammock location. Here is the beach wedding site.
The beach wedding site for Akumal is called the Hammock Wedding Site. It is home to hammocks during the morning and evening. For weddings they remove the hammocks from the area and replace the polls with white fabric. This comes standard for the wedding ceremonies. You can choose to bring your own fabric to make it more colorful. If you do that, I highly recommend 16-18 yards of fabric.
Here is the new Akumal beach. This is a man made cove that has a very nice beach area and good snorkling.
Next we’ll take a quick look at the Akumal Golden Club and some of the villas. These villas are along the path towards the jacuzzi pools.
Here is the inside of an Akumal suite!
Each room has a patio or balcony with a table and two chairs.
Inside each room is a mini fridge that comes stocked with soft drinks, water, chips, and chocolates.
There is also pool towels for each guest and a small safe. For reference, this is an iPad3 inside the safe.
The bathrooms are beautiful and well equipped with bathrobes and a lovely assortment of toiletries.
And here is the Akumal jacuzzi pool and the jacuzzi bar Chit.
All Gran Bahia Principe guests have access to the Hacienda. This cute little area has shops, bars, and live entertainment. It also is home to the nightly disco!