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Playa Maya
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Reviewed 19 March 2011

We just returned from a wonderful week at Hotel Playa Maya. Much thanks to all the folks who gave advice and especially to Steve who made the reservation and financial transaction secure, efficient and painless. Steve kept us thoroughly informed, sent some local information and ensured we were well taken care of.

Ok, Arriving at Cancun airport:
This airport itself can only be described as a disorganized disaster. The luggage and customs process (lines) are in real need of efficiency tweaking (they should hire Steve), spring-break mobs did not help the disorganization at all. ;). Anyway, once we retrieved our luggage and made it through customs we walked on by all the timeshare, cab and other transportation hawks and just kept walking to the end of the terminal, the entire process took about 40 – 50 minutes. We stopped to change just a few dollars and headed out the door and went direct to the ADO buses. We were in luck and the bus was already at the gate and ready to roll. We bought our tickets for 110 pesos ($9) at the bus. The bus was basically empty for our 45 minute trip. GREAT way to travel, very comfortable, very clean and we highly recommend it! Any other mode of transportation is a rip off and you are just wasting your money.

We arrived at the Playa del Carmen ADO bus station without incident, grabbed our bags and exited the bus station facing McDonalds on 5th Ave. We then made a left and strolled about four blocks down 5th avenue until 8th where we made a right towards the beach. When we hit the beach (150 - 160 yards), we turned right on the sand and approached Hotel Playa Maya (50 yards). One of the staff working on one of the Palapas once seeing us stopped working and immediately came and assisted us with our bags and escorted us to reception where Nora greeted us and made us feel very welcome.
Check-in was fast and hassle free. Our room was not ready yet as we arrived around 10 am. However, our bags were secured and we were offered cold water, towels and asked to relax on the beach. We opted instead to go exploring on 5th and grab some lunch at one of the bazillion eateries lining the avenue. A cold Sol (a couple actually) and some chips and salsa while we watched all the folks walking by worked out fine. Around 2 p.m. we returned to Playa Maya and we were shown our room where we received an explanation of how everything in the room and hotel worked, breakfast times, TV, air conditioning, safe, etc. We stayed in room 301 (by far the best for ocean view on the premises and quiet, although there are no bad rooms), matter of fact we had an unobstructed view of the ocean even when lying in bed. The room itself was very clean and the maid kept it that way our entire stay. The bed was very comfortable, had several pillows and there was plenty of storage space unless you brought way too many things. Although, the bathroom could use a shelf for all that women stuff wives usually bring. The room also had a small table, two chairs, a fridge (stocked with two beers, two sodas and large bottled water – water only, is replenished daily), coffee pot, hair dryer, safe (uses a key which you must put the lock into the safe and then remove they key), great air-conditioning and a flat screen TV. Shower was large; had plenty of very hot water and the water pressure was fine. The balcony while very small fits two beach type chairs and a small drink table. It worked for us; we sat there at night or early morning for the fantastic breeze and beach watching. Towels and beach chairs with an umbrella are also provided with each room.
The Playa Maya hotel staff was great, no make that fantastic! Everyone we encountered was very friendly and more than helpful. Food was good; drinks were cold and the beach was very nice (do not expect the super clean raked beaches of the big AI resorts. Way too many folks (slobs) unfortunately think the beach is a big personal ashtray and bottle cap receptacle. The beach chair area can get a bit crowded as chairs not being utilized by guests are rented out. However, this did not present any problems for us and we enjoyed every day. There were no large groups of spring breakers near the boutique hotels which was a welcome relief.

All in all we had a fantastic mini vacation, great weather, great food and great staff. Highly recommended!

Restaurants:
Good restaurants are everywhere, read the reviews and print off the short and long list here on TA. I will say that we tried several, but found the best food at inexpensive prices at small mom & pop operations with just a few plastic chairs and tables with hardly any tourists. If you want excellent, inexpensive food, get off the big avenues and hit the side streets. Find El Fogon -- Tacos al Pastors is a must; do not let looks fool you. Also great is Las Cazuelas, and Las Brisas.

Lastly, we would like to again thank and commend the entire staff at Playa Maya who ensured that our ever need was taken care of and our vacation was fantastic. They all went beyond just doing their job, they made our time with them fun, and ensured that we will be annual visitors.

Regards,

Jim

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

I just cannot say enough good things about this hotel-- it was gorgeous, nicer than most of the hotels we have stayed at on the beach ( we usually just care about 4 walls and a clean room..)
The staff was so friendly and kind, always working hard to keep everything neat and clean.
The communication from the owner was top notch as we booked our trip. I was traveling with my Dad, and was so impressed!! Little details in the rooms-- modern conveniences, the rooms were not dated like others we had stayed at- the towel art was off the charts! Mermaids, swans, rabbits bedecked in seashells and hibiscus flowers! Maria at the front desk was so sweet- the wait staff were amazing- they were very kind to help us charge our phone ( it was a rental phone) and we had left the charger at home by accident. The coconut shrimp were SOOO yummy! All the food was superior- not only in taste but presentation. Everyone was accomodating and friendly.
My Dad has since returned and we will continue to stay at Playa Maya whenever we find ourselves lucky enough to be in Playa!
We only wish we had stayed at Playa Maya sooner-- the lack of beach had prevented us to do so in the past, but it was nice and sandy when we were there last.
Go to Playa Maya- you will not regret it!!

  • Stayed: September 2010
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3  Thank Maikaferin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2011

We've stayed at the Playa Maya each year for the past 6 years. It's so relaxing and the staff is very helpful and friendly. It has the perfect location
right on the beach.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank GPS__1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 February 2011

This is the 3rd time we have stayed at the Playa Maya and we can't wait til the 4th. This hotel is a smaller personal hotel directly on the beach. The rooms are clean and comfortable. The staff is outstanding, Pablo, Nora, Mary, Juan, and everyone at the bar and beach staff. Breakfast is included in your stay and there's nothing like having breakfast with your toes in the sand.

I recommend trying the fish tacos and shrimp nachos. Yummy!

You do have to access to the hotel from the beach. But it's a very short walk and if they see you coming they are right there to help with your luggage.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank KSue63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 February 2011

We loved it; once again. Congratulations to Steve and the staff, they go above and beyond. Special mention to Pablo, Nora, (front desk) Othman (bartender), Raciel (restaurant and bar manager), Luciano, Peter, Carlos, Miguel, Jesus (waiters) and the beach guys Alberto and Luis. The rooms were cleaned daily by Fidel and his towel art was awesome.

Six a.m. coffee and breakfast bars are a plus for us early morning walkers. Breakfast selections are varied and quite satisfying. We ate lunch and early dinners here several times during our stay. Dinner orders will be accepted until 5:30 p.m. Lots of items are large enough to be shared: shrimp nachos, club sandwich w/ fries. Their salsa is one of the best in town.

Easy walk to nightlife and good music along the beach, as well as to anywhere around town. We felt very safe and comfortable here and in Playa del Carmen in general.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DiJo2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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