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“Overpriced, Run Down,”
Review of Hotel Villa Kiin

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Hotel Villa Kiin
Ranked #8 of 40 Isla Mujeres B&B and Inns
Reviewed 19 January 2014

Stayed 4 nights with my girlfriend. It was a high season and the trip was planned last minute, so any available hotel in convenient location was a blessing.

But...

We got what they call "honeymoon suite"... it's a 2nd floor room with king size bed and a balcony with jacuzzi overlooking the playa norte.

The hotel served its purpose but terrible service, very outdated furnishing, very poorly kept common space, patchy internet connection, joke of a breakfast...

For the same price or less we could have gotten better places (Cabanas Maria Del Mar that I mistaken Villla Kiin as, Avalon across the bridge all inclusive package though I'm glad that I didn't book, and Playa Media Luna which seems to be fully booked all the time, or any nice places outside of Playa Norte/Centro).

Do not stay there.

I love the location but they need some serious management change and reconstruction.

Room Tip: Do not stay in Room #28. Noise from downstairs(lobby) and the restobar next door will kill you.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank ShoichiN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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158 - 164 of 324 reviews

Reviewed 10 January 2014

You will likely book through a third party, and pay a deposit. The prices you will have will be in USD. You will be told that you have to pay in CASH and in pesos. When you go to pay, none of your figures will work, as they take their posted Peso price, and convert it to USD at thier own rate. For us the rate was 14:1, our $3864MX bill came to $4300MX somehow, and there was no arguing about it. Sure $400 pesos is only $30 USD, but if they bilk every client out of that amount because they set their own conversion rate... AND keep a lot off the books as a result of thier cash only policy, one begins to question the ethics of all the charges, and weather things like taxes are even being remitted.
The rooms are OK at best, but the location is great. We'll be looking for a place with some integrity insofar as charging rates goes in the future. Sorry, we will not be back.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank wyrldtravlr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 November 2013

I wouldn't spend a week here but for what we needed this was well located, clean and reasonable. We were staying in Playa Mujeres and decided to ferry across from Punta Sam and spend a night on Isla Mujeres. Hotel Villa Kiin is about what you'd expect from an older...well worn beachfront motel. We had cabana 16. Only downside was it was kind of dark. Some of the other cabanas had a larger window but we were only there for the night. Beach is protected and warm and the little hammock grove was really peaceful. We heard some strange noises up in the palapa roof probably from some good sized local bug or bird but interior ceiling kept our exposure to just the noises. Shower was hot and clean. Desk staff was helpful. This isn't 4 or 5 star or probably not even a 2.5 but for $99.00 USD...it was just fine with a golf cart rental right on the corner. Would I stay again? Probably not and would opt for something ferry side but for a budget conscious traveler...it works.

Room Tip: Ask for a cabana with a full size window to the beach
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank LoveTravel0917
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 November 2013

I had read all the other reviews multiple times before making our reservation (which we direct with the hotel as it was the cheapest option at the time).

So let me start off with the 5 star part: the location!

The interior area of the hotel is literally a sandy, palm tree covered "grove of happiness" with plenty of hammocks to lounge in, patio tables and chairs to sit in and if you want sand to lay on! We enjoyed fresh coconuts daily (as they are always falling and easy to grab - they are literally everywhere!). We loved the sea grape trees, palms and tropical flowers! So incredibly beautiful! There is also an abundance of little geckos and anoles on the property - just no iguanas.

You are literally a stones throw away from the beach, and the gates from the beach into the "grove of happiness" is locked after 5 pm. (Which is totally fine as it gets dark shortly after).

There is an adorable dog, named Rex that hangs around - he belongs to one of the property staff. There is also a 'house' cat (don't know his name) that comes to say hi!

Ok so the beach - OMG it is AMAZING! It isn't the largest beach as far as depth but it stretches in width and it is flanking the most perfect lagoon that you can literally walk out over a half a football field in length and never have water that gets much past your chest. The water is CRYSTAL clear, full of lovely fish, a reef to snorkel, patches of sea grass for the fish to "hide" in and perfect white sand and NO ROCKS! It is mostly so shallow that you can just sit in it and relax.

There is virtually no one else on the beach other than a handful of locals on the weekends, people who may be staying in the private rental properties to the east and that's it!

The only downside is that you have to stare out to sea and have your view impaired by the UGLY Avalon Reef Club (which JUST changed their name and ownership to Mia). Oh yes and it just so happened that when we were there was when the new ownership decided their "road bridge" needed work so most days we heard hammering, chain saws etc which ruins the beach sounds. But can't be helped and can't hold Villa Kiin responsible.

We stayed in a ground floor PAKAL room. Definitely preferred being on ground level (as we had a patio to sit on, with a ceiling fan etc. However the view from the upper level was a bit better as you got to the the sea/lagoon much clearer (but then again you also saw more of the Avalon across the lagoon where as on the ground level you looked through the "grove of happiness" to the sea.

The room was basic. Overall if I was the property owner I would do a lot of upgrades and repairs but it isn't run down - it's just old and it shows. The shower is nice and large, tiled and has glass blocking halfway down which lets in a lot of nice light. Also has plenty of screened windows at the top and a ceiling fan so plenty of ventilation.

Beware as this next tidbit may or may not freak you out.....you can NOT flush the toilet paper so when you use the washroom you have to throw your used t.p in the garbage can. That is actually quite common on the entire island as it is mostly septic systems if not the whole island being septic systems. I grew up in a house with a septic system so that didn't freak me out but some people may not like that.

Not that we were there to watch TV but I can say that the cable connection was VERY fuzzy (and sometimes the cable didn't work at all) so if you are looking to watch TV at any time, don't rely on it - bring your laptop or tablet pre-loaded with stuff.

The bed wasn't hard as a rock like others say but it is definitely old......old enough that when you move even an inch the other person feels it. The pillows however in our room were quite flat and hard so I was glad we had our travel pillows with us!

The A/C worked perfectly fine but again the unit is old so it is true that it is quite loud. That wasn't an issue for us but just a heads up.

The water in the shower definitely takes a few minutes to heat up (but that is common in most places I've travelled) but it didn't take more than a few minutes. Again not an issue really for us as we prefer our showers cooler.

The decor was a bit dated, and even a fresh coat of paint on everything would be nice, but again...not complaining. It is NOT a luxury resort nor should be graded as one. I really did enjoy the natural shell lamps - but I'm into neat stuff like that.

Our room also had a small fridge which is great and it definitely worked well! Our room was cleaned daily and always had fresh clean towels. But again go to the dollar store and get some wash cloths before you stay here as they don't provide them for you. The room safe was the type with a key lock (which I refuse to use) so I can't comment on its effectiveness. You are given fresh BEACH towels when you check in and can have them replaced every third day. You are also given the lock to the safe, the remote for the tv and remote for the A/C which you must give back upon check out otherwise they charge you for them.

I had a chance to peek into the "budget" rooms which I didn't like and I never got a chance to see any of the other rooms. I can say that our room was VERY light and not musty. And I also loved that our "door" was actually sliding patio glass doors (with screens) so that we had an entire wall of windows to look out. Also neat is that the glass is treated so that during the day it is a mirror looking from the outside in and then reverses itself at night.

Want to just also put in here that the grounds are kept immaculate!

Of course there is an outdoor shower with a tap to rinse off pre or post lagoon swim or to rinse off your feet.

Now I also found out that the owner is named Rosario and he also owns Cabanas Maria Del Mar. I'm not sure what he's like but I'd like a chance to personally talk to him as there is two things I want to talk about.

1. Will he sell this property? (it is truly a diamond in the rough and with someone willing to put in the time and MONEY to update it, particularly the rooms) it could easily become a 5 star property.

2. He needs to vet his staff MUCH better. This is the BAD part of my review and I hate talking about it but I MUST mention it. One day while I was out swimming with the dolphins my husband left his iPhone 5 on the lower corner/foot of the bed just sitting there. The patio door was partially opened. He went in to use the washroom so that door was closed with the ceiling fan on (so making a bit of white noise). He was only in the washroom for a minute but when he came out his iPhone 5 was missing. He searched high and low and then went to the front desk. Now the two ladies who mainly worked the front desk were wonderful, but I think they were covering for one of the male property workers. Long story short after the front desk lady got on her walkie talkie and speaking in VERY fast spanish was talking with the other staff........the word was out that the phone was missing. Staying with a short story, as the front desk lady and housekeeper that day came back to our room to speak with my husband - one "distracted" him while the other tucked his phone is the most [--] up and obscure spot and pretended to find it. The "missing" phone was found in MY running shoe, which both running shoes were in a plastic bag, tied up and almost tucked behind the fridge. Now ANY person would know and realize that that is NOT somewhere you put your phone. Not too mention that my husband knew where he set it and TORE up the room looking for it. So it appears to be that one of the male workers quickly entered the room, pocketed the iPhone and tried to grab the iPad (which didn't work because it was plugged in behind a bunch of stuff that would have gotten knocked over) and then when the front desk lady spoke to him - he relinquished the phone back to her and she played a diversion with my husband so the housekeeper could "hide" it back in our room and "pretend" to find it. Now if I was there when this happened the ending of this story would have been a hell of a lot different as I would have "lost my [--] as I like to say and the police would have been called after I beat the "suspect" into submission. But my husband knows how I am so it worked out well that I wasn't there when it happened. But the front desk ladies really liked us so I think they were instrumental in getting it back for us. And I don't give a rats [--] what anyones says....this is exactly what and how it happened and if it wasn't for us establishing a good rapport with the front desk ladies on the day of our arrival (I brought them both "gift baskets of Canadian treats") that iPhone would have been gone! However the thief would have been screwed as with the new iOS7 that phone would have become a brick paperweight as no one without the security validation password (a new iOS7 feature) would have EVER been able to use it! Whew.....sorry had to get that out.

Now like I said earlier I NEVER use a safe that isn't a digital one - I don't trust ANYONE and I am the kind of person that always carrys around the important stuff and the rest of my stuff (including most of my clothes etc. stay locked up in my suitcases). This could happen ANYWHERE in the world, so I don't blame Mexico nor do I blame Villa Kiin but seriously, I am just sick and tired of stupid BS like this happening ANYWHERE in the world.

So yes, the front desk ladies were awesome but I did butter them up. There IS snorkel gear to use in the front area (however I own my own gear and travel with it so I'm not sure how good or clean their gear is). They do sell smokes and snacks, and even beer in the lobby which is good. I'm not 100% sure if they do accept credit cards for the entire stay? I paid a deposit with my credit card and actually knew how much I had to pay in US dollars before I left Canada so I just went and got the equivalent amount in Mexican Pesos before I went and paid the day we checked out. All in all for a 10 night stay we paid less than $600 US total for the ground floor Pakal room and I was MORE than happy!

Regardless of the "attempted" theft I WILL be back next year!

If you have any other questions about this property please drop me a line!!!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank Julie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2013

In the days We where there the hotel was managed by 2 very unpleasant women that have basically never said hello to us and the only smile seen was when they took ALL the money in advance for 3 nights (of course no receipt given). THey have asked not only for the money immediately at arrival but also for the credit card details (never happened in my life) and to fill a statement where we said we received towels and a lock from them. As a coincidence, one towel was missing after 3 days and we need to pay 30 euros (equivalent of one night / person) for the towel. We have also found clothes of the previous guest under our bed. Location is anyway nice and very close to the best beach of the island. But it is definitely managed by criminals.

Room Tip: do not go there
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank patrick p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 September 2013

The room was a little dark and it was a little musty too but maybe this is to be expected for a tropical setting. It was really pretty nice, especially for the price range. The part of the beach that the hotel is on though, was AMAZING. It is pretty secluded but very near to the busy part of town. I can't say how perfect the beach was. You can wade out for like a 60 yards and then there's a reef that is actually worth snorkeling. You can borrow a snorkel from the front desk and see a really decent amount of fish. It was perfect..except for the giant high-rise partially blocking the view. Still, the beach is perfect!

Room Tip: All rooms appeared to be near the beach. The room was fine for sleeping but get out to that beach!!
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  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Demian R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 August 2013

We used to stay at the Villa Kiin whenever we visited Isla Mujeres, however over the years we found better places to stay. While the location on Playa Secreto is first rate, the owner, Jose' Lima, is quite the opposite. We like the condos on Sunset Beach much better and are looking forward to our next trip there February, 2014.

Sorry Jose'...Maria, but your greed and lack of integrity is why we avoid your hotel now.

Room Tip: They used to have a small kitchen for guests. Not any more. :(
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank troye577
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Villa Kiin

Address: Calle Zazil Ha Num 129, Mz. 30 Lote 23 | Col Centro, Isla Mujeres 97000, Mexico (Formerly Casa Maya Hotel)
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Isla Mujeres
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 40 B&Bs / Inns in Isla Mujeres
Price Range: £48 - £111 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hotel Villa Kiin 2.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The casa Maya hotel in Isla Mujeres was developed by owner señor Jose Lima as a Mayan town with its palm thatched bungalows around a coconut palm garden and 100 yards of beachfront. It has 22 rooms and offers a very Mexican, very Mayan atmosphere. It has a wide collection of reproductions of the best Mexican painters like Diego Rivera and his wife Frida Kahlo, a large collection of books about Mexican art, architecture, Mayan culture and history and señor Lima has now converted his hotel into a bed and breakfast hotel on the beach ... more   less 
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