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Sandos Playacar Beach Resort
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Reviews (13,974)
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4,824 - 4,829 of 13,974 reviews
Reviewed 18 October 2011

just came back from my vacation at sandos playacar and is the worst vacation ever, their is no communication amongst staff member and no one seems to know how to get around or to know where anything is. this was my first time in mexico and was very exceited to be there because the hotel was beautiful but the staff members was very clueless as to their envierement and was no help to me and my boyfriend as to where any was located. to sum this up the service was poor the food was mediocre and the drinks was watered down. everything that happen bad is swept under the rug. It took an hour for us to check in and get to our room and from that hour I received no useful info, just a long painful sales pitch about time share. things they promise to give was not given when you get their. all this was a lie to get you to buy time share.me and my boyfriend was so hurt we felt like we were scam. Upon reading these review the good and the bad i am wondering if these people who wrote good review was staying in the same resort or they were offerd insentive to wright a good review because i realy dont see any saff member that was there that was helpful or knowledgeable. these people need proper training and knowledge before they are thrown to deal with people. i need a vacation from all the stress i encountered at sandos. i will never recommended this place to anyone nor would i go back their even if it was free.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank nancy g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2011

For our 40th Wedding Anniversary we had a vow renewal ceremony at Sandos Playacar Beach Resort on September 13, 2011. It was a wonderful experience. Our wedding planners María Isabel Santabárbara & Lupita Aquino did a fantastic job of making sure everything was perfect. Maria was in contact with me via e-mail so we had most of the planning completed before our arrival. After a short 1 hour meeting with her and Lupita everything was in place and we were able to relax and enjoy our stay. The weather was warm and humid, but it made us enjoy the pools and ocean even more. Since this is not the busy season, we were able to use the sail boats and kayaks every day. The beach is the most wonderful part of the resort. Clean white sand and clear, warm aquamarine water. We ate a one of the restaurants every night and had no problem getting reservations for our entire group of 18. The day of the wedding, Maria had made reservations for me at the Spa to have my hair and make-up done. This was more expensive than the prices posted in the book in your room, so make sure you take extra cash. We had arranged for a photographer from the shop at the resort. He picked me up at my room and took “Bride” pictures before the ceremony, took pictures during the ceremony, and then many pictures after the ceremony up to and including cutting the cake. In all he took over 200 pictures and we were VERY pleased with them. The prices were reasonable and you are able to purchase a CD with all the pictures. I wanted artificial flowers so I could keep them, so I brought my own flowers, hence I cannot comment on the resort flowers or prices. We did the ceremony in the wedding hut between the pools and the beach. Maria and Lupita made sure it was decorated beautifully. A table was set up in the back with ice cold champagne and apple juice for the toast after the ceremony. The resort provided the wedding cake as part of the ceremony and not only was it beautiful, it was delicious! We had the dinner after the ceremony at the Steak House and we could not have asked for better food or service. They made us feel very special even though it was a vow renewal and not an actual wedding ceremony. I would recommend this location to anyone considering a destination wedding or vow renewal ceremony.

Room Tip: We had a beach front room. Fantastic ocean view from the balcony. Huge beautiful shower, but no bathtub.
  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Jane L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 October 2011

We were sold a 'luxury 5 star all-inlcusive' holiday by Thomas Cook, for our Honeymoon.

Being such a special occasion and more than just a normal holiday, we had big expectations and were both so excited having read the brochures and visited Sandos online.

After a 10 hour flight we met our Rep at Cancun Airport and were escorted to our coach. A long hour's drive took us to Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa. On arrival, we were greeted by a porter who 'snatched' our cases from us and gave us a luggage ticket. We were then ushered into the lobby and 'checked in'. There was no record of our reservation as honeymooners on their system (even though I had personally emailed the hotel a few days prior to flying out there). We explained it was our honeymoon and managed to get a junior suite. We went up to our room, only to find it was a twin room with 2 single beds??!! We immediately went back to down to the lobby to complain that this was completely the wrong room. After another 30 mins wait in the lobby, the member of staff found us another room. Just what you want after a long flight and a long transfer!!!

The room issue had left a bad taste in our mouth and put us in bad spirits. From then on it was just disappointment after disappointment...

The Food was awful. The Staff seemed to run around like headless chickens, not really doing much. The Entertainment was horrendous. The Restaurants were less than adequate. The Room Service was diabolical quality and took ages to arrive. Oh and did I mention, the food was awful!!

This was supposed to be our honeymoon...a romantic, quality filled break, enjoying lovely food and being thoroughly spoilt. This is what we thought Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa would be...we were SO wrong.

AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank CharLeeHoneymooners
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 October 2011

I would not go back here.

It took an hour for us to check in and get to our room and from that hour I received no useful info, just a long painful sales pitch. There was no line, just a slow process. Then the timeshare person told us we were in one building when in actuality we were on the opposite side of the resort. This resort is gigantic. We finally got to our room and our keys didn't work. 3 trips back and forth across this huge resort, and finally they sent someone, because the lock batteries were dead. Finally set foot in the room 1.5hrs after arrival.

Pros: The room was nice and the AC worked well. The beach was nice. The grounds were well kept and there were lots of animals wandering about the grounds. The drinks were good.

More Cons: Resort is huge and impersonal. When it came time to leave, I ran all over the resort trying to find an open towel exchange to get my towels cards back so I would not be charged. We got harassed again just before checkout about touring the resort with them.

The food was okay, but after 2 days, I was tired of it.

Now an unrelated warning to those renting cars.

Mexican Gas Station Scam October 14, 2011.

The gas station attendants are thieves at the last gas station on 307 headed north from Playa Del Carmen before the Cancun Airport. I stopped here for gas on my way to the airport and a small guy Jose was my attendant. He filled my tank, I gave him my credit card, then he handed it to a bigger guy I assumed was the supervisor/credit card guy. A few minutes later, he came back and said my card did not work. He then wanted about a 50% surcharge to accept US dollars since I did not have enough pesos. I gave him 2 US $20 bills and looked down to close my gas tank. When I looked up, he was holding a $1 and a $20 insisting I owed him more money. I gave him more money as I had to make my flight. As soon as I landed in the US, I called my credit card and sure enough, they had charged other peoples gas to my card.

Dollar Rental
Then when I dropped off the car at Dollar Rental, they initially filled out the form that my gas tank was not full and were going to charge me for that. I insisted they reread it with me present and magically, it was full.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Joe H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2011

Can i first of all start by saying to anyone who is reading reviews on trip advisor and thinking about coming to this hotel to please not pay any attention to the bad ones. My boyfriend and I have recently come back from a two week stay at Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa and it's been the best two weeks of our lives! It was absolute luxury... I called it paradise. We went on the 26th Of September 2011 and came back on the 10th of October 2011.

The hotel - The hotel was amazing! Quite big. My boyfriend and I were at the very far end of the hotel, the riviera section. It took us about 10 minutes to walk down to the beach in the morning, it was a nice easy walk but don't recommend trying to walk down here in heals at night time, it was a little tricky! I wouldn't recommend the hotel to anyone who doesn't like walking, or anyone who struggles to walk, although they do have lots of wheel chair access for people who need to use a wheelchair.
The rooms were gorgeous, we stayed in a whirlpool suite, the room had it's own jacuzzi bath which was amazing! It was so relaxing, I fell in love with it. The room was very spacious. We had a king sized bed which was brilliant. I've read a lot of reviews on people complaining about the mattress being to hard. They were quite firm but not unbearable, I thought they were actually quite comfy and didn't make us loose sleep over it! In fact, we couldn't of slept better. The room was always spotless, the maids were excellent at their jobs, keeping in clean. We tipped them at the end of our stay to show our appreciation. The mini bar got re-stocked every day and we always had plenty to drink. There were two cans of each drink. I think altogether there were 4 cans of beer, 2 cans of lemonade, 2 cans of fanta, 2 cans of pepsi and 2 cans of soda, so lots to drink, We got given two bottles of water every day too. Room service is free but we only used this on one occasion. We didn't really need it and felt a bit cheeky asking for it, even though it was all including in the service!

The beach - All i can say about the beach is that it is absolutely breathtaking! When you see pictures of beaches on the internet and look at them and think to yourself " It looks beautiful, but when we get there I bet it looks nothing like the picture " well this one really did look just like the pictures i'd seen before coming. They did lots of activities on the beach like volleyball, water aerobics and other little games. They try to get you to join in, we got pulled up a few times, it was really fun! When you get onto the beach, if you walk about 5/10 minutes to your right you get to like a little bit of the beach where is more or less deserted! No one really goes onto this part of the beach other than to have a walk down to it. You can swim as far out into the sea as you want and it really is paradise. The sand is so white and when it's wet with the sea your feet just sink into it. Really, really beautiful.

The food - We couldn't complain about the food. It was really good. We ate like pigs for 2 weeks, but isn't that all part of going away?! As well as the buffet there is also like a beach hut where we went for our dinner everyday. The hut is just off the beach and they do things in there like pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, soups, salad, fruit, cakes and have an ice cream machine and drinks machines to help your selves whenever you wanted to. The iced tea was delicious, i got quite addicted to that stuff. On the hotel there are also 7 other restaurants that you get tickets to use on them. There was- a Mexican, Asian( which was Chinese food)Steak house, Mediterranean, Italian, French and a Brazilian restaurant. We tried most of the restaurants. The Asian one was our favourite. The presentation, quality and taste of the food was all to die for. It was really nice. We also liked the steak house too and the Brazilian.
Quite a few people have said that the places where you eat were very hot and not air conditioned. All the restaurants were, and these were nice and cool but the main buffet area and the beach hut weren't, it was fairly hot in there but you just dealt with it as you were on holiday and it didn't really matter. It didn't bother us. There were some lovely drinks to have too. The pinacolada's were lovely and on the beach they did fruit smoothies in a blender. Our favourites were Healthy Heart and Spa Life...yum yum.

The pools - There were quite a few pools on this hotel. All of them were lovely and clean and very refreshing to jump into when you got to hot! We didn't really use the pools much as we loved the beach too much.

The weather - For the first week we couldn't of asked for better weather. It was beautiful. Boiling hot and hardly a cloud in the sky. The second week was hit and miss. we had a bit of rain on the second week and a bit of cloud but it was still red hot!

Trips/excursions - While we were here we did a total of 3 trips altogether. We wanted to do more but didn't have enough money as the trips were quite expensive in pesos.
I definitely recommend doing the trip called 'Xplore' if you love adventure. This trip was totally the best, we had such a fun day. There are loads of zip wires/zip lines to go on which were so cool. Half of them are high ones, you just keep climbing and climbing up these towers and get higher and higher. The highest one was a little daunting, but as soon as you started going down it, it was wicked! The other half of the zip lines, were water related ones. They would end in water or you would go through a water fall at the end or go down a water slide, so much fun. You also got to drive these big jeep/buggy things through the jungle on a track, that was brilliant. We loved it that much we went round the track on those 3 times! there was also canoeing and swimming through this cave with loads of stalagmites hanging down from the roof, it was so pretty.
We also did a snorkelling trip and a pub crawl which consisted of going to two bars and then ending up in Coco Bongo. These were both great trips as well and if you do get chance to do any trips I definitely recommend going to Coco Bongo and Xplor.

The town - If you get chance I recommend people to hire a bike from the hotel( these are free of charge) and bike into the town to have a look around. It only takes about 15 mins on the bikes, and the bikes are so fun. They are the old fashioned style bikes where you have to pedal backwards to stop, we loved them.

All in all we had such a fantastic holiday and can't say a bad word about anything. It was totally amazing and we will definitely be returning in a few years time! All the staff were really lovely and brilliant at their job!
I hope this review was helpful to anyone who is considering coming here.

Room Tip: If you have trouble with walking or don't like walking, try and get a room as close to the beach as possible.
  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank Kaycub
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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