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Joyful photographer & videographers, lovers of film and chasing golden light.

MEET Holly & Grant

So we were so excited to take our next trip down to Cozumel, Mexico! One of our couples was getting married down here so we decided to add a few days on and make it a mini relaxing vacation away from home. In this blog post, I wanted to go over the resort we stayed at, the food we ate, the activities we did, and what we would and wouldn’t recommend for future beach lovers!

First off, we stayed at the Secrest Aura (pronounced Ah-roar-ah) resort in Cozumel Mexico in Quintana Roo. Secrets is the only all adult resort on the island, and it is proud of that fact. To be honest, other than our bride and groom, Grant and I were probably the youngest people on the resort! We kept getting asked if we were on our honeymoon – it was pretty funny. 😉

This was the view outside the doors of our room. We were on the third floor
This was the view from our balcony! It was incredible just sitting out here listening to the waves. This was our favorite part of our room.
Our room had this big bed/couch thing on the balcony. We enjoyed sitting here in the mornings as the sun rose and in the evenings watching it set. It was probably our favorite part of our balcony.

We landed Saturday mid-afternoon at the resort. Right off the bat at the airport, Amstar, the local tour guide company, picked us up in a van. They shuttled us and our luggage the fifteen minutes from the airport to our resort. At the resort, we were greeted by the concierge with cold towels (because it was like 80 degrees and we’d just left 24 degrees in Pennsylvania) and they sprayed all our luggage down with sanitizer. I have to admit; this hotel did a better job cleaning than anything I’d seen in Pennsylvania since the beginning of the pandemic. All the staff wore masks, there were hand sanitizer stands all around and our rooms were cleaned and sanitized every day with room service. We’re not crazy over the bug, but it was nice to feel even safer about it while we were there.

Our first few days we mostly spent relaxing around the resort. We ate most of our lunches at the cafe Oceana right by the main lobby. They had the most “Americanized” food and basically, it was comfort food for us. They even served cheeseburgers! You were able to dress more casually here, in shorts and t’s or a coverup over your swimsuit. Our favorite restaurant (& dessert combo!) was Bordeaux. It is a classy french restaurant tucked back amid the private pool section of the resort. You had to dress up a little bit to eat at this one. Long pants for the guys, and a dress and sandals for the ladies. We HIGHLY recommend this restaurant! It was our favorite!

This was one of my other favorite meals!

Each restaurant had its own unique menu. Windows as more Mediterranean food ( we ate there once and did NOT go again. Neither of us are huge Medierteranian people), Barefoot Grille was a walkup and quick order, Market Cafe was a buffet style with a range of food (we ate breakfast here every morning!) and Manatees was a swim-up bar in the preferred section of the resort. If you like trying different types of food, we’d recommend trying each place at least once. We consistently went back to our favorites because, as I said, they were our favorites!

This was Bordeaux – our favorite fancy dinner restaurant
This was THE BEST Chicken Cordon Bleu we have ever eaten!
We came back for this chocolate coffee dessert. No shame.

Each day there were activities to participate in, and a few of them we did! We went for a bike ride with the guide from the hotel and biked up and down the section where all the resorts were. It was really neat! They also had ocean kayaking, pool Zumba, table tennis, and several other activities you could do in your free time. Most of our free time was spent wandering around taking pictures, trying to spot iguanas, and snorkeling!

We took this right before our bicycle ride. It was a warm sunny day!

Snorkeling was our absolute FAVORITE part! We went through our travel company Amstar and booked two snorkeling excursions through Chac Choc tours. We had the same guides on both trips, so it was really nice because we were already familiar with them! The boat picked us up at the end of the pier right at the resort, and then they ferried us out to the ocean. The whole trip was around 4 hours, including travel, which was the perfect way to spend the afternoon.

The water here was just so incredibly clear! And the rich blues and greens were so incredible. The sand itself was not the white soft sand you’d imagine, but it still made for incredible pictures.

After we photographed the wedding we’d flown down to photograph we spent the rest of our time relaxing and soaking up the beautiful weather. If you are a relaxing beach-type person we highly recommend this resort! There are enough things to do you won’t get bored, and there are plenty of pools to relax in and around if that’s your thing.

The only thing we did not like about this resort was the lack of active activities. What I mean by that is if you wanted to go see Mayan ruins (which we wanted to but ended up not going to do) you have to leave the resort and travel pretty far. For some people, that’s scary. And that ultimately is what prevented us from chasing ancient ruins. Even if you wanted to go ziplining or jeep touring, you have to leave the resort and travel. Some of the activities weren’t far, however, we would’ve loved it if we could have done some of those things right at the resort-like some other inclusive resorts. We were bored some days as well, just because we aren’t lounging on the beach people. However, if you are a lounging person, this shouldn’t be an issue for you.

Our only other complaint about this resort was the Sky Bar. Because this is an adult resort, there are bars in every restaurant and unfortunately, a bar on the roof of the resort. Our room was right under the Sky Bar, so some nights, we did not fall asleep until well into the morning. The Sky Bar started playing music around 9 pm and would continue until 1-3 am. We had a hard time falling asleep some nights, and other nights the loud music and people jumping around and screaming on the roof woke us up. “Living on a Prayer” will forever be the song that I think of when I think back on this trip!

This resort fully embodied the “tropical getaway” feeling many people go after. I definitely would revisit in the future, we loved it so much! If you are searching for endless good food, a relaxing worry free vacation, this is the resort for you. Even catching the van to and from the airport was incredibly seamless for us.

As a final point, we did not have to have the COIVD-19 vaccine to enter the resort as Mexico has no restrictions. No negative test was required to get into Mexico either. The resort made it incredibly easy to get our COVID test to go home. We picked a time in the lobby with the concierge for the day before we left. We showed up at our appointed time, went in and took the test. Within a few hours they emailed us the negative results and we were able to print them out in the lobby. American Airlines also made it easy for us. We simply uploaded all the information from the print out and took a picture of it and it uploaded it to our passports. When we scanned them to go back into the US we were all clear! There was no hassle at all!

All in all, we highly recommend Secrets Aura as a seamless, beautiful and relaxing all inclusive vacation. Cheers!

Travel tips for Secrets Aura Resort, Cozumel Mexico. : Cozumel – Secrets Aura Vacation


Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017


Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

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