Booked the Quetzal Resort, but checked-in and stayed at Tucan - they are the same resort. This was our 6th time in Riviera Maya and 4th time staying in Playacar, so a lot of my experiences are based on comparisons to other resorts. Really, the only complaint we had was regarding bike rentals. Playacar is a great community and the other resorts we've stayed allowed you to take bikes throughout the area. Although there were bikes at Iberostar, they were restricted only to people who took the daily guided bike tour. They did not let you take bikes on your own - disappointing, as this is something we've done before and really enjoyed doing.
Bikes aside, everything else about our week there was great:
We arrived early (before 11:00 am) at the resort thanks to our flight from Charlotte being early and there being no lines at immigration. Since we were the only people checking in, they were fast and efficient. Our room was not ready until around 2:00, but we were given towel cards and wristbands and were able to enjoy everything at the resort.
Because the pool is so large, it seemed like there was hardly ever anyone in it. We liked that there was a shop next to the pool where they sold tubes, rafts, and lots of beach/pool gear. Paid $15 US for a tube (which they blow up for you) and feel like we got our monies worth. Be warned the pool was very warm and not very refreshing on a hot/humid day. We really liked that there was a separate pool for games and a separate pool with swim-up bar. The water in the "grotto" bar was much cooler.
Lots of animals on the property! Everyday, we saw howler monkeys in the trees outside our room (1304) and throughout the resort. There were Agouti everywhere. They have areas set aside with parrots, tucans, turtles, and we saw many different other species of birds including peacocks, ducks, swans & flamingos. There were iguanas and saw a snake. Only a few coatimundi.
The beach is beautiful. A few days there was an unusual amount of seaweed washed up on the beach and a little in the water. Since Iberostar is the next-to-last resort in Playacar, you can walk South along the beach where there are no resorts. There's also a newly made artificial reef where you can snorkel off shore. We saw the same types and sizes of fish here as you would see on the Akamal snorkel excursions. Bring your own snorkel gear because although the resort offers gear for free, they do not want you taking it off the property to go here. I also booked the whale shark excursion through the on-site dive shop - Dressel Divers. Absolutely amazing experience! (see review)
The food was good. For a 7 night stay, we received 3 reservations for sit-down dinner and chose the Mexican, Tropical and Steakhouse. All 3 of these featured a buffet style appetizer/soup bar and included an additional appetizer at your table. You received choice of entree and dessert. We loved the Mexican and were pleasantly surprised with the Tropical restaurant - we had a great meal at both. The steakhouse was just okay - I would try a different place instead next time. More like an poor man's Outback, complete with country music and checkered tablecloths. The breakfast buffet was amazing - can't think of anything more you could possibly eat for breakfast that they didn't have. The dinner buffets often had a lot of the same items, but overall always had a large variety of items. The taco station for dinner was very good. They could have offered a little more variety for lunch, but the food was more than adequate.
The rooms are somewhat basic. Air conditioning worked great, plus a ceiling fan. Mini fridge was re-stocked daily. Beds were firm, and we slept well. Loved the large shower. Our room was on the ground floor & faced South towards the Sandos resort, but the trees were very dense you didn't get the sense that there was another hotel there - we saw/heard monkeys almost everyday from our balcony.
We will definitely consider returning here for a future trip. The service was very good - staff was friendly everywhere.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Privileged situation directly on the beach of Playacar, around 3 km from the town of Playa del Carmen. Specially recommended for honeymooners. Varied, colourful entertainment programme. Large pool area. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Playa Del Carmen
- Iberostar Tucan Mexico
- Iberostar Tucan Playa Del Carmen
- Playa Del Carmen Iberostar
- Iberostar Tucan Quetzal
- Iberostar Tucan Playacar
- Iberostar Tucan Hotel Mexico/Riviera Maya - Playa Del Carmen