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“The Best Vacation!”

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Royal Hideaway Playacar
Ranked #33 of 209 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Toronto
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“The Best Vacation!”
Reviewed 13 November 2012

We just returned from a one week vacation at the RH. We booked this as a last minute trip and were not 100% sure what to expect as we didn't do too much homework on the resort.

The second we arrived to Cancun airport we were greeting by our Air Transat rep and given private transportation to the resort. It was very comfortable and the drive only took about 35 minutes.

Immediately upon arrival we were helped out of the car and escorted into the lobby, the front desk staff was very friendly and wished us a happy anniversary. To our surprise, our travel agent Marketa from itravel2000.com called ahead and told them about our anniversary which was very nice of her! Our room was not ready which we expected and didn't mind at all. So we headed to the pool and had lunch at the deck.

Room- An hour later we went to our building #30 "Ilang Ilang" and were greeted by our concierge Gerardo. He was extremely friendly and brought us up to our room on the 3rd floor. It was decorated with balloons and they had a anniversary card waiting for us! The room was very nice, walk in closet, jaccuzi, rain shower, and a king size bed. We did face onto the other resort but the music at night never bothered us- we fell asleep fine.

Restaurants- lunch was always my favourite because of the guacamole and Baja Fish Tacos! The staff at the pool will bring your lunch to your chairs as well! In order of favorites:The Grille, Italian restaurant, International restaurant, and then the asian restaurant. Did I mention every liquor is premium you just have to ask. I was drinking Grey Goose or Belvedere all week.

Staff- above and beyond amazing. I have never experienced such thorough customer service. Our concierge Gerardo did absolutely everything for us from booking dinners, day excursions, breaking bills for tipping, arranging champagne for dinners, getting dress pants for my boyfriend who forgot his, and much more! Also, the staff at the pool will always bring your drinks to you, I never had to get up and get anything myself. Try the Pink Panther it was delicious!

Activities & Nightlife- We went to XCARET for one day. It was great, only recommendation would be to not buy the transportation add on and just take a cab to the resort. Cab is about $13 each way and you wont have to stop at 5 resorts to pick up and drop off people.
Be sure to take the bikes from the activity center and ride around Playa Car its a gated community and it has some gorgeous homes.
At night the resort bar isn't usually too busy so we preferred going into Playa Del Carmen and grabbing drinks at Senor Frogs or Tequilla Barrel. Very fun and you'll meet people there.

I cannot think of one negative thing throughout our whole experience. The portion sizes are perfect and if you are ever still hungry they will bring you more without a question. I now know why this resort was rated one of the leading hotels of the world:

http://www.lhw.com/findahotel.aspx

Room Tip: Anything close to the beach. We stayed at 30 and it was two buildings up from the pool & beach...
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank emcconkey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 11 January 2013
Dear emcconkey
On behalf of all the Royal Hideaway staff I would like to thank you for staying with us, and for letting us know the points that have impressed you during your stay and for providing other readers with your recommendations. Your comments have been shared with all staff.
We look forward to welcome you back!
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Buenos Aires, Argentina
Level Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 November 2012

it is a very nice hotel, more exclusive. It is a good thing that the lunches are not buffet style, but you can order with the menu.
The bad thing is that there is not entertainment during the night and they try to sell quality beverages.

Room Tip: rooms with balcony
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank narine1985
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 11 January 2013
Dear narine1985

Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway for your visit to the Riviera Maya and for taking the time to provide a review of your stay at our resort.
You are right, our entertainment is low key , although we offer dancing lessons, yoga, water gymnastics, bingo and darts during the day and have live music including piano, saxophone, guitar, harp, dj or karaoke at night.
As you mentioned, however, the center of Playa del Carmen with a large variety of night life options is only a 5-minute cab drive from us.
We have a variety of wines and beverages that are in the all inclusive package, but if you want to get a specifically wine or beverage you can buy.
We will be very honored of welcoming you back in a near future!
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2012

The Royal Hideaway is a theme hotel for big shouty Americans to pretend they are somewhere classy. A perfect example is the Palazzo restaurant with it's over the top decor and blaring opera music which makes it more in keeping with the Vegas strip than anywhere near Italy. Not wanting to tar all Americans with the same brush, as we did meet some that were very lovely, we were sadly inundated with the 'corporate beano' groups on our second week who just seem to crowd around the infinity pool, drinking as much alcohol as possible while commandeering all the parasoles from the second pool so sod anyone else that may want some shade from the blistering sunshne.

The first room that we were allocated when we checked in was very dark and dank with a real fusty smell and mouldy bathroom. The balcony looked straight at a chicken wire fence with a view of the neighbouring hotel's engine room. As we had arrived late into the day we slept in the room then the following morning I asked reception to be moved but was faced with an un-interested employee who told me that I would need to pay to upgrade. To be fair it was around 6am as I was jet lagged but a quick call to British Airways and within an hour we were moved to another room of the same standard but with a much better, brighter outlook and less mould in the bathroom.

The rooms really do need a refurb and whilst housekeeping do keep them as tidy as possible they really need a deep clean too. The window in our shower didn't look like it had been cleaned for months. I had contacted the hotel in advance to request a feather pillow however this was not available in the room and it took 3 requests for it to be received. I had also asked in advance if the rooms had tea making facilities and was assured that they did however all that is available is a filter coffee machine and some tea bags. NO you cannot make tea from a coffee machine, even if you do warm the water in it it still tastes of coffee. I would have been most happy to bring my travel kettle had I of know so it's annoying when something you expect is not available. The mini-bar in the fridge consists of four cans of pop and two cans of lager with an ice cube tray filled with water (BECAUSE ITS A FRIDGE - NOT A FREEZER). So although the resort is all inclusive, if you want to have drinks in your room you must call room service and wait from 15 - 30 minutes for them to arrive and house wine is olny available all-in by the glass. If you want a bottle sent to your room (even of the same brand) you have to pay for it. Pointless really? We just got fed up with this policy and bought a few bottles from the shops over the road.

There is NO mozzie deterant provided in the rooms so make sure you take your own. Even though we did it took a few days to really kick in by which time I had been bitten to bits. Also, AVOID using the air-con in the room. We turned it on for one night while we went to dinner to cool the room and turned it off when we returned but I still woke in the morning with a raging sore throat (which I still have over 3 weeks later). Judging by the condition of the rooms I'd say the A/C system has not been sanitised for years.

So after all my moaning why have I rated this hotel so highly? The one thing that really lifts this place and makes you forget all the snags is the staff. They are the most attentive and friendly staff you could expect, especially all the waiters and the boys that keep you topped up with refreshments by the pool or on the beach. We never felt that we were left wanting for anything and service was always with a smile. The grounds are all perfectly manicured and the pools kept spotlessly clean. The food in all the restaurants is very good (although not as Haute Cusine as they are trying to be) but it was a shame that the menu's in the restaurants don't change as we had eaten our way through them by the end of the first week so some variety would have been good however there are daily specials. The bars are very well stocked with a good selection of premium brands and some expert cocktails prepared in the Piano bar.

Would we go again? Sadly no, as the shouty corporate groups are just too off-putting for us and has even made us cautious of heading west again.

P.S. I read a review on here about the food portions being too small. NOT TRUE. If you think they are small then there is a problem with the size of your waist, not the food on your plate.

Room Tip: Avoid the blocks on the edge of the resort and insist on a room in the centre of the resort.
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Bubbabearski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 10 January 2013
Dear EKnight
Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway for your visit to the Riviera Maya. We are concerned to read your review, and I will contact you directly via TripAdvisor to follow up about your stay. Our goal is to provide an unforgettable experience, also we want to apologize for the group who bothered you. We are sorry about problems with the room and for the mosquitos in order to maintain the control we daily fumigate all the areas, Riviera Maya is a very tropical place.

We thank you for your comment on the quality of our food options. We take great pride in food and beverage program, we have many restaurants with different menus in order to please all of our guests . We also thank you for your comments about the staff.
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Oxford, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 November 2012

We just returned from a quick 5 night stay at RH. We were last there in April and had a terrible experience due to unruly corporate guests. We were apprehensive about returning, but from start to finish, this visit erased our fears. Everything was perfect, and we've already booked our next trip (#8).
We arrived around noon, and our room wasn't ready until 3, which we had expected. We were able to change and go down to the pool/deck where we got something to eat and had a relaxing few hours around the pool before we were shown to our room. Due to our problems last April, the management upgraded us to an ocean view room. The room was spacious, comfortable, and had a large patio from which we could see the ocean. Although it was on the first floor, it wasn't musty in the least, and as usual, it was spotless. Best of all, it was only seconds from the beach/pool.
There was a corporate group visiting the first few days, but unlike the group in April, this gathering was relatively quiet and low key. As the resort was at low occupancy, even the extra numbers didn't prevent us from having easy access to the lounges around the pool and fast service at the Deck and Spices in the morning. We were able to get reservations for dinner at the times we wanted, and the service at dinner was well paced. In addition, the early November weather was beautiful - mid 80s, blue skies, and low humidity. Plus, since it was the low season, the noise from the other resorts was much lower than usual. We are seriously thinking of visiting in November in the future.
The food was, as always, fabulous, innovative, beautifully presented, and perfectly seasoned. Portions were more than ample, except at Las Ventanas, where some might consider the portions small. But if you want larger portions, just order doubles. The staff will do whatever they can to make you happy. Also, each meal consists of 3 - 5 courses; I've never walked away hungry from a meal at RH. Our only regret was that Spices was not open for dinner while we were there, although it was open for breakfast and lunch. We love the ambiance there at night.
The grounds were beautifully kept up and the relaxation pools were amazing - perfect places for a late afternoon glass of wine before getting ready for dinner.
Once again, I can't say enough about the staff. They go above and beyond to ensure that each guest has a memorable stay. Even the grounds staff and the housekeeping staff met us with smiles and greetings every time we passed them. A special thanks to our concierge, Paola, for making my husband's birthday memorable. She personally blew up balloons and placed them around our room to surprise him and arranged for a beautiful chocolate torte in the room when we returned from dinner.
The waitstaff at all the restaurants and at the pool are also to be commended. We always bring a supply of bills to reward them for their incredible service, although they give the same service regardless of whether or not they receive a tip. We didn't see many people tipping, which is a shame. The staff works so hard; they deserve a tip.
We're so glad we decided to give RH another chance. It showed me once again why this is my favorite vacation spot. There is nothing better, and we can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank kathy61950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 10 January 2013
Dear kathy61950,
On behalf of all the Royal Hideaway staff, I would like to thank you for staying with us, and for providing the TripAdvisor community with your recommendations, I will pass your compliments to our concierge Paola and I will share this comment with our culinary team . You’ve made great suggestions!
We are looking forward to having you back soon!
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Westlake Village, California, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 November 2012

Just returned a couple of weeks ago from our week stay at the Royal Hideaway in Playacar, Mexico. We have visited the Playa Del Carmen several times in the past and this was the creme de la creme. Such effort is given to make sure you feel pampered in every way. We were a bit disappointed with the fact that the Club Royal did not have entertainment during the week we were there, however, it seems the staff exceeded and excelled in providing above and beyond in all other aspects.

It was recommended by our concierge we schedule the "Chef's Table". It is a private dining experience inside the kitchen in the Ventana's restaurant. Ventana's was one of the restaurant choices on the property. Every one of the restaurants was top-notch and excellent in every way. But what stood out the most was the amazing, amazing 4 hour "spiritual" experience we enjoyed at the Chef's table. The executive chef, Eugenjo Villafana created a special menu just for us. I cannot express in words how exceptional this evening was. Perhaps it was the love that Chef Villafana infused the food with. Perhaps it was the passion he conveyed in his description of each carefully prepared menu item --- and just perhaps it was the attention to each and every detail of the food presentation and the wine pairings. Whatever, it was....everyone who visits the Royal Hideaway absolutely must schedule the Chef's table and meet Eugenjo the master chef that this resort is so blessed to have in their employ. Thank you Eugenjo, David, Caesar and the entire staff for making this the highlight of our stay at Royal Hideaway. Cheryl Lopez

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank Cheryl L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 10 January 2013
Dear Cheryl L
Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway for your visit to the Riviera Maya and for taking the time to provide a review of your stay at our resort. We are thrilled that you enjoyed the friendly, warm, attentive and personalized services we strive to provide all of our guests. We are so happy that you enjoyed The Chef´s Table and the special menu prepared for each guest according to their preferences.
We are looking forward to hosting you during your next Mexico vacation
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Yonkers, New York
Level Contributor
39 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 November 2012

Having been here 2x now, we noticed a few changes. The resort is still top notch, the food is excellent and top shelf liquor options. Here are some things to keep in mind. Ask to stay in the middle buldings on the resort because we could hear noise coming from the resorts on either side of our resort. The concierge that is assigned to your building can handle or answer almost any questions that you have, feel free to let them DO FOR YOU. This resort is ALL sit down restaurants for dinner and makes you make reservations for dinner, which is nice to set your day up and annoying when you cannot get the time or restaurants that you want. Another policy is they have a dress code for dinner, which is a pain for the guys, collared shirt, long pants and closed shoes. They have a wonderful infintiy pool, a big chunk of beach and even those beds on the beach. We would return again because we love its accesibilty to Mayan ruins and other activities in the area. The water is tha beautiful turquoise that we like to see. We think it was worth the extra money vs. others in the area.

Room Tip: There are 2 story buildings and 3 story buildings on the property, request any building in the middl...
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank dgitz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 10 January 2013
Dear dgitz Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway again for your visit to the Riviera Maya and for taking the time to share your experience on TripAdvisor. We are thrilled that you enjoyed the friendly, warm, attentive and personalized services we strive to provide all of our guests.
For help with dinner reservations in advance next time, please contact Customer Service before you travels at cservices@mx.occidentalhotels.com.

We are looking forward to hosting you again during your next Mexico vacation!
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Houston, Texas, USA
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 November 2012

We have stayed in many high-end resorts (both all-inclusive and not) and hotels in Cancun, Playa del Carmen and the Mexican Riviera and this resort absolutely takes the cake. In addition to being a bit more moderately priced than some of the other high-end resorts (Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita and Maroma), the service is perfect and the food is by far the best I have had at any resort in Mexico. There are 5 different restaurants to choose from and they are ALL fantastic. The breakfast is a huge buffet with pretty much anything you could ever think of included. The resort is much smaller than it looks on the internet which is a big plus and the bar serves whatever type and brand of drink you can think of. They offer a personal concierge service for each room which is just steps away from your hotel room door and they are eager to help with scheduling dinner (on-site or off), activities, airport transfers/confirmations/changes (we were there during a tropical storm), or anything else you can think of. The spa was small, but nice and the services were great. They have a small workout facility which could be a bit larger for exercise afficionados, but we enjoyed jogging into town every morning through Playacar to be a nice workout. The resort is located in Playacar which is a short 1/2 mile walk to Playa del Carmen. We walked to town on the beach each afternoon. The people that we met at the resort were repeat customers and we will definitely visit again...hopefully next summer.

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank karaerich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, 10 January 2013
Dear karaerich
Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway for your visit to the Riviera Maya. We are thrilled that you enjoyed the facilities and the friendly, warm, attentive and personalized services we strive to provide all of our guests.

We hope to see you again soon!
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Additional Information about Royal Hideaway Playacar

Property: Royal Hideaway Playacar
Address: Lote Hotelero No. 6 Fracc., Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Resorts)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#12 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#14 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#18 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#18 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#25 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#27 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#27 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Royal Hideaway Playacar 4.5*
Number of rooms: 201
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Award winning luxury all inclusive resort set along the beautiful beaches of Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Ideal setting in a serene environment for complete rest and relaxation. Adults only. Member of The Leading Hotels of the World. 2008 winner of the coveted AAA 5 Diamond Award. 11 villas with private concierge are spread throughout the property's immaculate grounds. Six gourmet restaurants serve delicasies in menu-style dining. A full service spa offers the ultimate in papmering and body treatments. Personalzied service and attention to detail set this resort a world apart. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Hideaway Playacar And Occidental Resorts
Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Mexico
Occidental Royal Hideaway
Royal Hideaway Playacar Mexico/Riviera Maya - Playa Del Carmen

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