The Occidental JF Puebla - Barcelo Hotel Group provides good value mid-range accommodation in Puebla, Mexico. By good value, I mean significantly cheaper than much of its immediate competition, abet without sacrificing on quality. I’d go as far to say the hotel feels a notch above its own price range, making it a good choice in a city often accused of lacking good value accommodation.
Located just outside Puebla’s city center, the Occidental has reasonable access to public transport to nearby attractions. The surrounding neighborhood itself is quiet, but with good restaurants and bars within walking distance.
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The Occidental has 105 rooms, the smallest being the 30 square meter doubles. The superiors and superior executive rooms are fairly similar, and mostly just offer more space. Whichever one you go for, expect to be a bit surprised by just how nicely the rooms are furnished. The rooms are nicely decorated, with gentle tones peppered with dashes of color. Mounted photographs of historic Puebla and its surroundings are a constant reminder of the hotel’s real sense of place. Expect all the standard amenities of upper-mid range, including free wifi, room service, on site free parking and 24 hour reception.
If you’re after some extra luxury, though, try the suites. They come with large hot tubs, plus a few extra luxuries to make you feel pampered.
Along with the features mentioned above, the Occidental also has a good mix of amenities for both holiday makers and business travelers. They have both wedding and honeymoon packages, including facilities for on site receptions and other events. They also have a total of nine meeting rooms, which can facilitate conferences of up to 300 people. Business class guests, eat your heart out.
Of course, the hotel has some nice bonuses for casual guests, too. Their on site restaurant Atelier is pretty good, though it’s the buffet breakfast that really takes the cake. It’s massive, varied and will keep you going all day. Occidental likewise has a bar, and even some gardens.
The Occidental’s last big drawcard its its location. The hotel is tucked in a quieter part of the La Paz neighborhood. Huddled around a hill with commanding views of Puebla, La Paz is one of the city’s most popular neighborhoods. It’s safe, and has some good night life. Bars and restaurants are within walking distance of the hotel.
La Paz likewise has a strategic location between the Puebla historic center and the popular village of Cholula. Puebla’s historic center is packed with museums and colonial era architecture. The historic center can be reached from La Paz within 10-15 minutes, with regular public transport. If you’re bringing your own wheels, bear in mind that central Puebla’s traffic can be appalling. In the other direction, the drive to Cholula is much nicer, though public transport is also available. Cholula is home to the world’s largest pyramid, and is particularly nice to visit on weekends.
Occidental JF Puebla is a good choice if you're looking for a clean, modern hotel in a quiet neighborhood but close to restaurants. Rooms are very clean and well furnished although not big, and the buffet breakfast is abundant and well appointed.