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“Great Resort, brilliant yoga”

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Sandos Caracol Eco Resort
Ranked #84 of 211 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great Resort, brilliant yoga”
Reviewed 10 August 2014

My husband and I booked this resort for a two week holiday. The hotel is very family orientated, water park, night entrainment, games area etc. We decided on the second day to pay a little extra to be able to go into the adult only areas, private beach area, swimming pool and a couple of extra restaurants. It was nice to have the option to be able to have these as we found the main pool very loud with lots of children and the entrainment guys organising aqua aerobics, bingo etc.
Every morning my husband who is training for a marathon would run on the treadmill in the hotel gym and I went to yoga.
I have only done yoga a few times in the past so I was a little nervous to start with. However the teacher was so passionate and explained everything in detail both in English and Spanish. Over the two weeks he would often correct my posture and made myself feel good when I improved.
I would return to this hotel especially for the yoga. It helped to make my holiday one of the best holidays I have ever been on.
Our room was spacious and clean, I loved all the animals that lived in the hotel, raccoons, monkeys, donkeys to name just a few.
The only down side was that the hotel was a 5-7 minute taxi ride into the town of playa del Carmen. It doesn't sound to far but with the price of the taxi being about $14 we only went a couple of times. If we had been able to walk into town we probably would have gone in most evenings after dinner as the entrainment at the hotel was more suitable for children and families.
All in all, an amazing holiday. I would recommend the hotel for any family, couples and everyone who loves yoga.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank r0sie350
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sandos_Caracol, Director de Recepción at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort, responded to this review, 15 August 2014
Dear guest,

Your comments regarding your recent stay in the Sandos Caracol Eco Resort & Spa are very much appreciated by the entire team of workers you recently met during your holidays.

Thanks to the time you have invested in leaving your experience on the tripadvisor travel site, lots of other people who are thinking about the Riviera Maya will read how beautiful the Mexican attention to the guests is in our resort.

All of our staff endeavour to deliver that personal touch to all guests in the hotel, and we are delighted that you experienced this customised service with our Yoga teacher who puts his whole soul and heart into this mission he takes on taking our guests to another level of relaxation and peace.

In the hope we will see you soon again in the Sandos resorts, we invite you to write us a mail before your visit to help you with any requests you may have.

Kindest regards,

Fatima Medina
Web Relations Manager
Sandos Caracol Eco Experience Resort,
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New Brunswick, New Jersey
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 August 2014

I can not begin to describe what an amazing unique experience this resort provided me during my 8 day stay. This eco-friendly property had a rich history of the culture residing in a tropical jungle paradise. Expect to run into the local wildlife on a regular basis, racoons, coati, iguanas, etc. As a fan I thought it provided for great pictures, though please do not feed the animals!! The animals do tend to stay in their own habitat however, if you are not animal friendly then you may want to check out Sandos Playacar.

As for the accommodations, the room was very clean. We found they do come in and spray for bugs so just be aware. I personally did not see any bugs in my room with the exception of a very small lizard who ran under the mini bar and spent the second to last night with us but he didn't drink much :)

Restaurants were overall pretty good. RESERVE IN ADVANCE ("prior to arrival" early!) as the restaurants are booked. Of course there are buffet options - The international buffet, despite having a variety of food was always crowded and chaotic. Mexican was good ate their quite often but again I suggest dining early. The Brazilian Rodizio and Mediterranean Restaurants were my favorite. The service was outstanding and the food was great!!! Los Liros had good food, but expect to wait awhile for your meal. Other restaurants I didn't get to dine at were the Italian Buffet and Hibachi both requiring reservations in advance. The snack shack always served traditional American hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, for a quick bite on the go.

Activities, there are quite a number for both families as well as those traveling with friends. I was staying as a ROYAL ELITE member and had access to the ADULTS ONLY section of the beach as well as private pool. The beach front Royal Elite Infinity pool is beautiful but small and crowded. I suggest a visit in the early morning to grab a chair. I spent most of my days under a canopy beach bed as the sun was quite hot or poolside in the ADULTS only section where it was fairly quite. Main Pool= Chaos but if that is for you go for it! I didn't even make it to the water park to be honest. After seeing the main pool I was a bit afraid of what I may encounter so my apologies for the lack of review.

Bike Tour - Mayolo was outstanding!!! A friend and I toured the property on bike our guide helped us identify trees that were poisonous as well as the tree that provides the antidote. Without that lesson I may have rubbed up against the wrong tree on my excursion to the ruins!! There are also a few ruins on property, suspension foot bridge, and a few cenotes.

YOGA< YOGA< YOGA!!!!! JUAN CARLOS has changed my life! I have always been very active, with weightlifting/circuit training being my latest fitness program of choice. I have chronic back problems diagnosed with sciatica/performis syndrome causing me to drastically change my regime. After finding Yoga on the schedule, we decided to check it out and I am so happy we did. I was never a big fan of Yoga finding it to be "boring" and more of a "stretching" activity but I WAS SO WRONG. The class was 1.5 hours of pure workout my friends, I have never sweat so much in my life! My back and legs felt better after each class, the stretching and lengthening did wonders for me. Not to mention, the setting overlooking the lagoon in the early morning listening to the sounds of nature, total zen. The instructor was also simply amazing to watch how graceful and in control of his movements as he demonstrated "how to float". I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS CLASS!!! Be sure to RESERVE IN ADVANCE (at the Spa) because the class will fill.

Excursions, My group chose to do one full day excursion. I highly suggest you purchase from a beach vendor if you are looking for a great deal. We were able to negotiate the "Adrenaline Tour" for $90 includes transportation to atv's (singles) 45 min, Rappelling, Zip Line, Temzacal, Cenote (cave), transportation (beverages) to buffet Lunch and a bike your through Coba. We chose Coba as it is one of the last ruins you can actually climb. However, be careful it is treacherous hike as well as decent instructed to be done by clinging to rope but first.

My ROYAL ELITE stay was outstanding providing everything I was hoping to find and much more. The only down side would be the rocky beach, so I may check out Sandos Playacar next trip which is just a few miles away as I the beaches are nicer and I can conveniently still practice YOGA with Juan Carlos there :) As a ROYAL ELITE member you have access to services at both locations. Counting the days until my return visit.

Tips
Make dinner reservations prior to arrival
Pack water shoes for the beach/rocks
Bug spray is provided on premises but you may want to bring the bracelets (considering the surroundings the bugs were not that bad)

Room Tip: The "noise level" is really what you choose. If you book early as you can select a room in...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank justajayne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sandos_Caracol, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort, responded to this review, 15 August 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you very much for choosing our Resort as your new regular vacation spot. Every time we hear that we have a new member of the Sandos family it feels nothing but rewarding and encouraging for the hard and sincere effort made every day by our 900 staff in the hotel that works every day to make our guest happy and comfortable.

We want to thank you for your detailed review, and the time you have invested in leaving your experience on the tripadvisor travel site, lots of other people who are thinking about the Riviera Maya will read how beautiful the Mexican attention to the guests is in our resort.

I will pass on the nice comments to our staff specially, Juan Carlos, and Mayolo, . They will be thrilled to hear that you have arrived home safe and you remember them in your review.

With nothing but gratefulness and a warm greetings from everyone in Sandos Caracol I invite you to contact us next time you visit us with all your personal request so we can revive this amazing experience you already had, or if possible make it better!

Best regards,

Fatima Medina
Web Relations Manager
Sandos Caracol Eco Experience Resort,
webrelations.caracol@sandos.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Level 4 Contributor
45 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 August 2014

If you are an "eco" person who doesn't like a/c, then this a resort for you. Wifi is only in a few places, and a/c is in fewer than that. Little kids will like it - and it does have a cool ater cenote. If you go, do not go in late July or Aug.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank willcamjr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Level 2 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 August 2014

My husband and I recently returned from an Anniversary trip to this resort. We wanted to check out the resort as a possible family and friends group vacation destination for next summer plus celebrate our weddng anniversary. Let me first say the rooms were clean, the bed comfortable, the beach was awesome. We loved the snorkeling!!!! We had read reviews and brought our water shoes and snorkeling equipment. We loved that it was shallow and calm very far out with lots of rocks and breakers to find fish around. This is why we go to the ocean is to snorkel so that was perfect!!! We stayd in the select club area. We never used our patio, because unfortunately we got one that faced another patio and there was only one chair on ours, so it was pointless to have a tiny patio with only a view of another person patio. :( The select club area is at the far opposite end from the beach but we didnt mind the walk most of the time. We agree with everyone though all the pools should be open until at least 10pm but they close down way too early at 8pm. The server, Marta, at the select club pool was extremely nice and very helpful. She provided the best service of anyone at the resort during our stay. The select club beach area is very nice, not crowded and great beds, chairs etc... However, the service there is HORRIBLE!!! even if you tip dont expect good or fast service not during the week anyway. The server just disappears for an hour or more if you go to the bar for service, the bartender always acted mad and upset to wait on us. We were tipping but we didnt see others tipping, but he would still wait on everyone else that came up after me first.... VERY FRUSTRATING, especially when paying extra for select club and tipping. We got to the point we would get our drinks in the main area and not the select club beach. The resort has alot of different food options for everyone, so everyone will be able to find something to eat. However, we didn't feel like the food was seasoned very well or of great quality in most of the buffets, but it was eatible and no one would go hungry. The a la carte lunch at the select club pool restuarant was excellent. The grounds are beautiful and clean. we loved walking around the grounds and looking at the wildlife and observing the monkeys. There were animals in cages etc.. that did not look healthy and some of the wildlife around and cats also looked to have mange which was very sad. :( I am a big animal lover, so while I love to see wild life I really disliked seeing the Parrots that had alot of feathers missing down to bare skin (these were kept caged). We will consider going back possibly but will also look into other resorts. We felt this resort did have alot to offer families and we enjoyed the shows but it was very crowded and just average. If we go back we will want to stay closer to the beach and in the Royal Elite Area.

Room Tip: Select Club for Quiet
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank TropicalLove39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sandos_Caracol, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort, responded to this review, 18 August 2014
Dear guest,

We appreciate the time you have taken to write this positive feedback about your stay in Sandos Caracol

At Sandos Hotels we have a commitment to provide quality service beyond our guests’ expectations, and it is a real pleasure for us to know that we have achieved our goal.

This definitely strengthens our philosophy of seeking the highest level of service excellence, we are proud to know that Martha provide a high quality service, we will pass your kind comments to her. We also thank you for your insights on the service on the Select Club beach club as we will look into this matter and apply corrective actions in order to give our guests the best service possible.

We would be glad to welcome you again when visiting the Mexican Caribbean next time.
Best regards,

Fatima Medina
Web Relations Manager
Sandos Caracol Eco Experience Resort,
webrelations.caracol@sandos.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2014

We are a family of four. I booked this vacation after a vacation booking company recommended it. The place has very small bedrooms, way too firm pillow, and no cold water in the dispenser. The beach is dangerous since it is very rocky. The vegetation is very dry. The kids pool is not well kept and the family pool was dirty. Their buffet food consists mostly of starches and pork meat. Their a la carte restaurants have very bad service. I do not recommend this hotel to anyone since there were also roaches and spiders in our room which made me feel very uneasy since I have arachnophobia.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mari2867
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2014

I recently traveled to the resort for my destination wedding. We had a large number of guests attend and everyone enjoyed themselves to the fullest extent. The resort offered excellent food, drink, excursion, and entertainment. Everything was always clean, and the staff were friendly and helpful. The beaches were great! there were rocky patches, but there was also plenty of clear space. Our friends and family were able to spend a lot of time hanging out in the shallow waters together without any interference from the rocks. There were also many schools of small and medium sixed tropical fish that would swim around us- very cool! No matter your interests, there is a ton to do for anyone who books their vacation here!

I highly suggest, if you stay here, to book all of your dinner reservations prior to your arrival, as it was very difficult to secure a sport once you arrived.

The resort offers many great activities that are included in the price you pay for your room. I took advantage of the morning yoga classes with, Juan Carlos, and they were awesome! The class was held outside on a deck by one of the ponds early in the morning. Juan Carlos was an inspiring, supportive, and motivational instructor. His class was a wonderful way to start the day!

Marine, the wedding coordinator art the resort, was absolutely amazing to work with. She worked tirelessly to make sure that our day was everything we wanted and that our guests were always happy. She was always available to answer questions and provide support. She did not hesistate to go above and beyond in making all parts of our wedding, from prep, to rehearsal dinner, to a rehearsal party, to the entire day and night of perfect.

My husband and I look forward to returning here with our families again in the future!!

Room Tip: All of our guests stayed in rooms located all over the resort. As far as interior, all of the rooms...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Aleia S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Diamond bar, CA
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 August 2014

I got a deal from a timeshare so our family of 4 has a 1 bedroom unit with Royal elite treatment. Except couple bad food bugs which I will mention later, the resort was more than that we expected. I will review as the most preferable first to the least.

1. Beach: known it will be a rocky beach from the reviews and hotel's pictures, we brought along water shoes and we were all set. The only thing I did not expected it is this beach was so calm and huge compare to other hotel. VIP like us had access to even better beach, which has both reef and sand and also huge and empty. We love snorkeling so this reef plus no wave, crystal clear water fit us right. We saw lots of fish, not abundant or many varieties as preserved beaches in Hawaii but still really good to have it all inclusive. Vest and snorkel set can be borrow for free for 1 hour or $5 per piece for several hour (or tips the guys:). Hope the hotel doing something which those guests lay or stand on the reef to take pictures or take their drink to the water, don't even care for all the lives underneath them. Lots of beds and lounges chairs and no seaweed as of Sandos playacar or some other reviews pictures. May be we just lucky this time.

2. Room: room not supper big as the pictures, I would say about 600-700 sqft with a nice big bedroom and 2 baths. Love the shower, toilet and double vanity are separated so make it very convenience for every one to use at once. Living room is smaller with a day bed that fits 2 kids comfortable but not sure will fit 2 teens or 2 adults or your legs will hang over :). Room has many luxury future like the quite AC, big screen tv, lots of closet and mirror, cool water dispenser (hot water dispenser did not work for our room), shampoo, soap and lotion dispensers, lots of towels (feel dried), bathrobes, slippers, a frig with soda and liguors, even an umbrella for us to use in case of rain. There was a strawberry dipped chocolate waiting for us there. Our room right on the main pool and look forward to the beach, and very central to all the restaurants, theatre, snack bar, water park, cenotes.

3. Surrounding: very shaded beautiful resort. Rooms nest in tall trees with birds (get up early to see them) and other wild life. However, we went at the end in July and it was very humid, no breeze at all so we could not take time and stroll around much, just sort of run through to see where things are. Beautiful cenotes, a couple with water clear enough to swim in but my husband rather go to the warmer, bigger beach and more fish. We saw nice looking birds, agouties, deer, macaw, peacock, turtles. Lots of termites hills look kind of scary.

4. Aqua park: beautiful clean and shallow, decent size, just a right amount of kids (compare to the crowded pool). Lots of towels, chairs and snack bar for kids adults. My boys love them, they went in almost everyday after the snorkel at the beach.

5. Staffs: well trained and helpful. Always there to support but not police supervision. They keep their eyes for the safety of the kids at the water park, other wise enjoy your (and your kids) vacation. I did not encounter any misbehaviors kids, only guest adults. Waiting staffs always nice and hard working. Thumb up to the manager.

6. Show: surprisingly good for all inclusive resort. This resort went kind of out the way to get good costume and practices. Show combines of dancers and acrobats. My husband don't like the open air theatre, even we came early to sit near the fan, so we end up see only the Disney show, super hero show and one of the cultural show and a peek at the Mexican night, but they all good.

7. Foods: Not a good at Sandos playacar and other resort we went. The foods are fresh and abundant but they always tried to mess up the meat that too dried and little flavor. Salad bar and deserts always good so we live on it with some seafood. VIP can get access to Los Lirios for a la cart breakfast, lunch (very crowded, took us almost 2 hrs for 3 simple courses) and dinner. The dinner at Los Lirios are among the 3 restaurants that rated best (steak, Brazilian and Japanese), but this meal where my husband and my younger boy get a food poisoning last them for more than a day. My son still have little bit now today as we are home. That's too bad because i would love to go back there for desert. The special orange sorbet really is special, served in a tiny chocolate bowl. Brazilian meat also not to tender and dried (except the flank steak and chicken) and the meat just go around once (I forget it's an a la cart not a buffet). Japanese is the most scrumptious one and they give a lot, just a little easy on the soy sauce would be perfect (skip the sushi, you not missing any thing). Italian a la carte kind of buffet food with nice presentation, no thing special, but we love to go here for the AC. Only Italian and steak house has closed door AC, every thing else are open air. Vegetarian restaurant is right on the beach, open air of course, but kind of nice for change without meat, even they also serve fish and chicken.

8. Pool: main pool crowded and hot, chill out pool hot and need a make over and Royal elite only pool is nice but still hot. Not quite big to call infinity but lots of cushion lounger chair around this pool. We only used the pool the first day, after that why not take the beach where it's much nice water and empty.

9. Concierge: The reservation system for restaurant kind of suspicious. I receipt no VIP treatment at all. I went book it twice but funny to get more available the second time then the first time. Look like if they know you will be there long, they not hurry up to get you the restaurant you want until the end of your trip. We ended up having 3 good restaurants at the end in which the first one Los Lirios gave my husband the food bugs so he has no appetite for the other 2. We also call for the doctor one night when my younger boy vomit so much but nobody answer even the sign said "24 assistant". Please keep hot foods hot and cold food cold, special during the summer, put a lid on the burger and the cheese for the sake of the hungry kids.

10. Weather: If I can afford to let the kids miss school or winter air tickets, I would go other time. It's not so enjoyable to sweating while eating or watch a show or even walk around to see all the nice areas of the resort. Happy travel all.

Room Tip: Go for royal elite if you can. I don't think you can choose a room. We paid $200 total more than...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank wnmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sandos Caracol Eco Resort

Property: Sandos Caracol Eco Resort
Address: Carretera Chetumal Pto Juarez Km 295, Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#31 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#45 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#52 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#59 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#72 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sandos Caracol Eco Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 956
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Caracol Beach
Sandos Caracol Eco Hotel
Sandos Caracol Beach Resort Spa
Sandos Select Club
Sandos Caracol Mexico
Hotel Sandos Caracol Eco
Caracol Village Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Sandos Caracol Beach & Spa Mayan Riviera
Sandos Caracol Resort
Sandos Caracol Riviera Maya

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