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“So good I want to keep it a secret...”

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Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel
Ranked #40 of 211 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 28 January 2013

My wife and I "got away" for four nights to celebrate our anniversary. We looked at several resorts and sort of stumbled upon the Blue Diamond. I can't say enough great things about the resort. The hotel arranged a car service to get us to/from the airport. A massive SUV was waiting for us the minute we passed through customs. Hotel check-in was extremely quick and pain free, though just long enough to be greeted with drinks and chocolate truffles.

The sleeping room was huge, immaculate and generally stunning, with a private pool and wall to wall windows overlooking the river and forest. Since we could "schedule" the maid and turn down service to meet our schedule, we never suffered from door knocks, dirty towels, or unmade beds. As for the mini bar, it rivaled most "man caves" with its variety of top shelf beers and liquors.

Regarding service, anything we wanted was available and presented, promptly, with a smile. (It helped to speak a little Spanish - as a courtesy and to interact with some of the non-frontline staff.)

Lastly, having been to a few "all inclusive" places, we were a little concerned about the food. We expected repetitive buffets or so-so meals. We could not have been more incorrect. Varying restaurants, changing menus, and the ability to mix entrees or appetizers allowed a number of choices for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks. etc. As for quality, I had some of the best meals I have ever eaten, rivalling some of the best restaurants in NYC.

As noted, the resort is so incredible I'm hesitant to write about - hoping it remains quiet and secluded. While we visited, only 20 of the 100 rooms were occupied. However, the staff was so great, so friendly, so wonderful, I'd hate to think any of them would leave due to lack of business.

Two other notes - The resort does not allow kids. That was great since we left ours at home and would have missed them has we seen other families. Also, though it is "all you can eat and drink" we never saw people getting drunk or being overzealous in their consumption. Tranquility ruled.

Room Tip: We went for the more expensive room, thinking the private pool would be a nice perk. We never used...
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank KFB-NYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 27 January 2013

We were there fore 5 nights.. we have been to mexico at least 5 times in the last two years. All amazing resorts. Excellence/ Beloved Hotel etc. Blue Diamond's service was the worst we had ever encountered. Their staff was not friendly. DID NOT DO ANYTHING WE ASKED THEM TO unless we asked 3 times. They were always late. This resort needs to have a complete make over for attitude. Prices are too expensive for what they offer at the resort. PATHETIC.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Exha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2013

We just returned from four nights at the Blue Diamond. I have been to five other all-inclusives on the Riviera (Hideaway, Grand Velas, Zoetry, Capri Secrets and Tres Rios) and this resort was one of the best. A few great items of note: ala carte meals (no buffets), very quiet, very clean, spacious rooms and baths, new furniture in rooms and at pool, friendly staff, adults only, beautiful beaches, nice gym and spa.
Since the hotel is so new (one year), I am afraid the secret will get out and the resort will get more crowded. The food menus did not vary much between the two restaurants, far walk from rooms to beach (unless you book a beach room). Only a few rooms with two beds (all kings except Patio rooms), room service was an extra charge, pool beds need more shade.
I will definitely return.

Room Tip: Try for a beach villa, pool on roof, smaller rooms but beautiful view.
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Jan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 January 2013

My husband and I spent our honeymoon here in November 2012, and we loved every moment of our stay there.

You arrive at Blue Diamond via a private, gated driveway off the dusty main road heading to Playa Del Carmen. Your first taste of the property's style is inside the massive indoor/outdoor thatch-roofed lobby where you're greeted by your own concierge to check in. While your bags are silently emptied from your vehicle, which is then valet parked out of site, you'll enjoy a fabulous non-alcoholic cocktail and chocolate bon bons at the concierge desk. There you'll receive your room paperwork and wristbands to wear during your stay.

A golf cart, now tidily packed with you luggage, then whisks you down the only pathway that traverses the whole property, to your room. Though "room" is somewhat of a misnomer.

Each room is really it's own building, often adjoining only 1 or 2 other rooms, though some are two stories tall. Rooms are grouped together around beautiful art installation by a famous Latin American or European artist (worth reading the plaques, they're quite interesting), and the rooms face outward, so you'll rarely see another guest from your windows.

Our room looked out onto the lovely little creek that flows from the cenote at the top of the hotel down toward the ocean. A long rectangle, the bathroom was on one end and included two showers with lovely overhead spouts, as well as a door that opened onto the outdoor jacuzzi pool (which is filled at your request, at any time).

The bed was lush and comfortable, the linens perfectly white and pressed. The closet was a bit musty because of the humidity, but in the tropics, who really cares anyway?

Now, on to the food! There were three restaurants available to us during our stay and the dinner option changes between two of the locations every other night. The first option is a casual beach side cafe (Ceviche Tapas Bar) on the lower desk of the pool area. They serve really lovely fresh latin fare like empandas, ceviche, fish tacos, burgers and salads. Expect to find a Mexican hint to the American style favorites on the list - a baby greens salad with goat cheese and dried cranberries was delicious but it's Mexican goat cheese (not American) so it has a funky little twang, though not bad at all. The seafood was always excellent and incredibly fresh. This restaurant is open all afternoon and I think into early evening.

The second dining option is the main dining option for breakfast, lunch and for dinner on alternating nights (called The Pool Bar online). It's next to the pool and features indoor and outdoor seating. There's also a separate bar adjacent to this restaurant that serves cocktails all day and late into the night.

Breakfast here was always my favorite meal. It's very continental style food with a Mexican twist but very formal service and plating. A broiled grapefruit served as a starter to many of my breakfasts and it's elegantly plated with candied orange and some herbs. A selection of fresh juices may not perfectly match my favorite neighborhood juice bar in the Bay Area of CA, but are delicious nonetheless. The bagel I had on several mornings never disappointed. Tiny in size but perfectly toasted, the small quenelle of cream cheese with a little lime zest was lovely and the side of lox always fresh, never fishy.

Beware the pastry service at breakfast - the pastries are actually pretty good and you'll fill up on them before your meal ever arrives! There are a few breakfast entrees with traditional Mexican ingredients like scrambled eggs with huitlacoche (a corn fungus that's very popular) and a crema sauce. All were interesting and delicious.

Lunch at this main restaurant varies day to day. One day sushi was offered (which was surprisingly good) another day I think they did paella on the patio in a giant pan for guests to see and taste.

Several days they also had live music on the pool area around lunchtime. One day I think it was a traditional indigenous duo on what looked like a wooden xylophone, another day there was a DJ spinning very Miami style lounge tunes.

Finally, the other dinner option is the formal Ambar restaurant which is a dramatic space in terms of architecture in the space, and on the plate. I definitely always dressed up for dinners in this white tablecloth space, replete with a wine cellar at the entrance, a lounge area at the rear and an exposition kitchen on one side.

Ambar is really a special place at this resort, and it's obviously the management feels very strongly about upholding it's grace and service. The ambiance is more formal than the main restaurant, the stemware is high quality, the feeling is tranquil and warm and the four-course meal is both exhilarating and filling.

Every meal we ate at Ambar was incredibly ornate and featured a very international flair. One night there was a lobster bisque with little drops of saffron oil on it. Another night was whole quail in a pomegranate sauce.

But the dessert...oh the desserts! One dessert we ordered time and again was the Guernica (named after Picasso's famous painting) - really artistry on the plate. Something you'd expect to see at Le Cirque. Perfect quenelles of chocolate ganache and bright half moons of a blue curacao gelee elegantly dancing across the plate. Ridiculously rich and gorgeous to stare at before diving in.

But what made our stay even more lovely was Ricardo, the hotel manager who never seems to leave the property. Incredibly attentive and helpful, Ricardo regularly checked in on us while we dined in the restaurants and genuinely wanted to hear feedback on our experience. I believe he is the reason this property is so "up to snuff" as some might say - a true professional in the hospitality industry.

So, I hope you enjoyed my review! I had such a lovely experience and I promised Ricardo I would write a review once we returned home, so I hope I've accurately summarized my experience, the ambiance and the food of this lovely resort.

Highly recommended!

Room Tip: All of the rooms are equally secluded and private, but get a room with an outdoor tub if you can. Or...
  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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11  Thank Lindsey R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2013

We stayed in January 2013. The resort is beautiful and well maintained.

The service was great - very friendly and accomodating.

The food was fine - we were not expecting 5-star gourmet food and we thought it was fine.
Breakfast - probably the best meal, lots of options, lots of juices.
Lunch - we typically ate lunch at the pool (would bring us food to our chairs --- we were on vacation!).
Dinner: Was the food amazing!? No. Was it bad? Not at all. Did they try? Very much so - there was typically live music, the waitstaff acts like it is fine dining, there was typically some amose-bouche presented, etc. Overall, we thought dinner was nice.

I liked that it was quiet and pretty empty, though there were not a lot of activities going on (there are some though, and Omar and team were helpful in going through everything).

There is about a 7 min walk from our room to the pool/beach - we would usually walk and almost always had a cart drive by to ask if we wanted a ride.

The wife went to the spa and gym and thought both were nice. I spent lots of time by the pool, it was very nice. Overall, we enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Barry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2013

Stayed here only for 1 night during my work trip and it really wasn't enough. It all started with the arrival. We were greeted at the front lobby by Ricardo (the property manager), where he provided us with a very thorough inspection of the grounds. This has got to be one of the most breath-taking properties I have ever seen. Check in was smooth and Ricardo surprised the group of 15 of us by saying that for this night - all of us would have our own suites. (Having a roommate is nice but it was amazing to be able to have a night of relaxtion in a king bed.) This is a smaller property (room wise) but the grounds are large. The rooms, I have honestly never seen anything so amazing. Walking into my room, seeing the large walk in closet, the oversized bathroom with outdoor bathtub, the huge bedroom with 2 walls of glass to see the view outside (I had the laguna view - and wouldn't have asked for anything else). Another perk to travelling with Transat holidays was the unlimited wifi in the room and the unlimited calls to Canada and the United States (made it great to be able to call my boyfriend and my parents to let them know how I was doing.) After unpacking, I met up with a few friends to take a walk on the grounds - I would suggest renting the bikes, as walking takes a super long time. After the little stroll, I headed back to the room to get ready for dinner - the his and hers showers in my room were in the same area, where some rooms were seperated by a walkway, I had them both on and stood in there for an hour at least. After getting ready Ricardo had set up a predinner cocktail where we met on the rooftop patio and had drinks and were able to smoke the hookah (which is just flavoured herbal shisha). After the drinks, Ricardo escorted our group to the Ambar restuarant where we had an amazing dinner. I have never tested such perfetly cooked food in my life. Even though the menu was preset - this time I did find something I liked and it was presented beautifully.

For the money, this resort is worth it. I could have spent my whole week at this resort and I would have been happy.

This would be great for honeymooners, as well as couples juts looking for a luxurious, quiet vacation where they can get their own privacy.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled on business
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3  Thank sammiiii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2013

We took two of our kids 18 & 19 along for a long weekend at riviera maya, and returned just this evening. I researched where to stay endlessly. Great beach, adults only, noo cheesy pool games or Vegas music at the pool, excellent food and drinks key. We were thrilled with BD! The pix and reviews do not approximate the beauty, pristine suites and grounds. The food was 4 star quality; as others mentioned an expanded specials menu and alternating daily menu would be well received. Nice top shelf liquors and wine; though hardly an extensive list. Loved having bikes to get to the pool, beach, and restaurant. Exc service especially front desk ladies, Federico, Roman, and Cesar. We shall be back and can't wait!!

Room Tip: Upgraded to patio rooms to accommodate our daughters, very nice and much appreciated. We had Laguna...
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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3  Thank skikandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel

Address: Km. 298-816, Carretera Federal 307 | Chetumal-Puerto Juarez, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Blue Diamond Riviera Maya)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#22 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#26 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#30 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#31 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#36 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: £281 - £789 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 128
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On the pristine coast of the world famous Riviera Maya, Blue Diamond Riviera Maya is a sanctuary of breathtaking beauty and peace, surrounded by nature mixed with luxury. This exclusive hideaway is set in 36 acres of lush tropical jungle, well manicured gardens and a spectacular palm filled white sandy beaches along the turquoise – colored Caribbean Sea, offering unparalleled pampering and rejuvenation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel Mexico/Riviera Maya - Playa Del Carmen

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