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“low key relaxing beach resort”
Review of Petit Lafitte

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Petit Lafitte
Ranked #8 of 209 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
“low key relaxing beach resort”
Reviewed 23 January 2014

gorgeous beach area and nicely maintained grounds/pool. perfect for a relaxing no pressure, low key getaway with your nearest and dearest. we had a lovely time and the staff was accommodating to our vegetarian request. will come again!

Room Tip: Bungalow rooms are worth it if you can swing it. regular rooms are fine, but not updated.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank brockpapersciss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 10 March 2014
Dear brockpapersciss,

We hope your re-entry to the real world was not as harsh as it seemed to be from here. Fortunately you got to spend a week of your Chicago winter with us, and from your review, we gather you really liked Petit Lafitte, its location, its staff and the way things are done around here.
Yes, when guests tell us in advance, it is very easy to accommodate special dietary needs, and we are working on the rooms, it is just a gradual work, as we are open and we have to do one or two rooms per week. Believe me we are moving in that direction and by the time you come back next time, we will be sporting a renewed face!

Thank you for choosing us among so many options in Riviera Maya, and for reviewing your stay!
See you next time!

Best Regards!

Ivan Fuentes.
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English first
Coronado, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 21 January 2014

The staff was wonderful. We were rained in for six out of the seven days which is unlike the typical Jan weather. Everyone was friendly and helpful. We enjoyed the cabana. As a family of four the loft was useful to give the kids their own space. Be careful to keep yourself and your kids from getting the water from the shower/sink in your nose and mouth. Very family friendly resort. The food was very good. They accommodated any dietary issues we had as well. My kids loved the fresh veggie, fruits, squeezed juices, salads and soups. We all loved the entrees for breakfast lunch and dinner. I couldn't find fault with the food and I can be picky. It's clean, peaceful and quiet. I was very glad I skipped the large resort (did that last time) and stayed at a smaller, friendly hotel. Thank you David and all the staff who were so nice. It's more than service, they are good people.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
1 Thank teamyaney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 7 March 2014
Hola teamyaney,

Thank you for your brief, yet eloquent review!
We are honored to hear your opinion on the hotel, especially on the service and the food, but when you say that... "beyond service, we are good people," Geee, things take a turn in favor of the personal, I remember back in the 90s one of my mentors focused on creating a philosophy in the service or building intimacy, but always keeping in mind that guest-staff relationship, not to cross the lines of being professional. That has been always a crucial matter for us, and it seems that we have been able to create such atmosphere here.
Thank you so much for your comments.

On a separate note, I would like to comment on the water…We take our water from a cenote, (which is as if you go to one of the cenotes in the area and take a dip there) moreover, we filter our water through a process that makes it “softer” (less minerals in it) and use a chlorine dosifier as the last stage of treatment. Sure it is not suitable for drinking, but it is probably better than cenote or even ocean water. So, sure, use the bottled water for drinking and even brushing your teeth, but it is unnecessary to over worry about for example when you are taking a shower. :)
Thank you again for your lovely review, we hope our paths cross again.

Best wishes!

Ivan Fuentes.
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 5 Contributor
57 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 January 2014

Our entire family…boomer parents, 8 adult children & spouses (age range 30-40) & 5 grandchildren (ages 1-10)…spent December 21-27, 2013 at Petit Lafitte in their beachside bungalows.

It's an intimate and very high quality property with about 20 beachside bungalows and 30 hotel-type rooms. The couples have this to say about Petit…”Simple, rustic, mellow and easy. Loved that I didn’t need shoes all week”…”Extremely easy-going environment”…”A laid-back, friendly resort on a beautiful stretch of beach”…”A great place for our family of 15 to vacation for a week. As the only couple who didn’t have children, we still felt it was a fun and relaxing place. The staff is very nice and attentive. Food was delicious. We especially enjoyed the many breakfast dishes. Yum! Overall, a wonderful place“.

It's hard to know where to start and stop when describing our visit. The resort’s beach area is superb by any standard and one of the best in the area, a fact that can be quickly confirmed by a walk up the beach in either direction. It’s the perfect spot for all ages, families, and groups.

Physically, the property is understated, very clean and well maintained. We loved staying in the spacious bungalows with the large, attached porch and the soft, clean sand that greets you from the moment you leave your doorstep to the ocean's edge and beyond. Early every morning the staff provided tasty coffee at the bar, which we enjoyed on our porch. The staff’s attention to detail was greatly appreciated…with bottled water in the room and fresh beach towels available daily.

The kids said, ”our bungalow reminded us of being at a cabin resort in northern Minnesota-no unnecessary frills, make-your-own-fun, relaxing, and perfect for enjoying the beautiful surroundings and great company”…”our bungalow was very private and had what we needed”. Another said, “very accommodating with diet and sleeping arrangements for the kiddies…one suggestion might be to bring your own sheets/pad for the crib“. The wait staff and cooks were always eager to respond to special food requests for our small grandchildren…steamed vegetables, etc.

A primary connecting point at the resort during the day is the Oceanfront Bar&Grill. Conveniently situated next to the pool and only steps away from the beach, the adjacent oceanside tables give you beautiful vistas for lunch or drinks. One of the kids commented, “the poolside bar is quaint with awesome drinks and very friendly bartenders”.

The food is very high quality, both at the pool/oceanside bar, as well as in the main dining area (for breakfast and evening dinner). Breakfasts were a treat with so many choices…favorites included the Spanish omelet, chilaquiles, and motulenos, but any of them are delicious. Also added to your morning pleasure upon request are specialty coffees…cappuccinos and espressos. At lunch you couldn’t resist the grouper tacos, with Pico de Gallo and guacamole…along with the delicious Garlic Cream Ajo dip. Chef Zoadz orchestrated a wonderful Christmas Eve buffet with turkey and the trimmings…some favorite evening specials were the Chili Rellenos and Chicken stuffed with shrimp.

While all of these items are terrific, the real asset is the staff. From the point of first contact with Louis, Head of Reservations, helping to plan our trip for multiple families with varying needs, including prearranged airport shuttle arrangements…to David, the Concierge, providing guidance with various activities, on and off property info, and general advice. They both laid the groundwork for a great trip. David added a special touch to the holiday with his Posadas and piñatas for the children.

Upon arrival, Eduardo made our check-in very smooth after a full day of travel, with bags whisked off to our respective bungalows. The same was true at check out.

Our daily rituals of pool and beachside play with our grandchildren and family gatherings for meals, we were ALWAYS eagerly attended to with boundless enthusiasm by Javier, Antonio, Manuel, and Geovani, plus 2 exceptional bartenders, Jesus and Victor, both of whom were never at a loss for the next great blended frozen drink, with or without alcohol. You could hardly decide between their lime daiquiris and our requested mango daiquiris, as they were both so delicious.

One noteworthy item will benefit you as a guest as well as the hotel staff. The bar and dining areas each have a tip box that resembles a treasure chest and is the staff’s preferred method to receive gratuities.

The tip box at the bar is solely for the bartenders and is not a gratuity for either the wait staff or cooks who are preparing/serving your food poolside. The tip box in the dining room area is shared among the wait staff and the cooks there. If you add your gratuity to your food or bar bill, it was our understanding that the tip is shared among all staff including the bartenders, the wait staff, and the cooks.

Our recommendation would be to bring lots of cash, whether US dollars or pesos, and provide your tips to your server or bartender directly, to be certain that the recognition/reward is clear at the point of service.

Having previously owned and operated limited service, franchised hotels in the USA, we can state unequivocally that you have not met a staff more genuinely eager to please you than you will experience at Petit Lafitte.

This resort and staff deserve many accolades. Thank you, Petit Lafitte, for helping our family celebrate a memorable Christmas 2013.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank bjwdrw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 6 March 2014
Dear bjwdrw,

Thank you very much for staying at Petit Lafitte over Christmas with your whole family. Your extensive and detailed review is well appreciated and very rewarding. I mean Wow!!...What to respond??... I hope, “Thank you on behalf of the whole staff and management” will suffice. And may I add that “It takes two to tango” ...You as an open, kind guest deserve a lot of credit as well. I mean, what an honor... You and your family were so kind and generous, you only received back the kind of energy you projected.
We know the winter in Minneapolis (and pretty much everywhere else up north), has been a harsh one. We hope you stay warm and keep happy thoughts in your minds when you look at your photos on your computer screens.

Until we meet again!

Ivan Fuentes
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New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 January 2014

Getting to this hotel was a hassle for us on the first day because the signs on the highway lead us to a mud road with huge pool of water in the middle, making it impossible to go thru. We had to ask around and took a detour.

The front desk lady was very nice and helped us check in quickly, showed us the room and got us an infant crib immediately after I complained about the junior bed they provided. Other staff are also very nice and helpful. They provide free breakfast and dinner and they are not bad, for sure it saved us $$$. They have a small but clean and lit pool, looks like you can try scuba in it. They also have their own beach which is beautiful and much better than the one stayed in Cancun. You can order drinks, snacks or meals from the little bar on the beach.

Now the negatives. The room was old/boutique, so are the decorations. I prefer modern style which is just personal taste. The humidity of Mexico had taken its toll here. The crib has a lot of mold on plastic linen, our son ended up chewing on it many times.

Worst impression for the hotel came from the coffee maker. When I saw it, I almost threw up. It was mold everywhere in the glass pot at the bottom. And in the coffee pod holder, the pod was dried up and had mold all around! They didn't clean it up until the third day. I had no confidence at all in the cleanness of the cups, glasses in the room.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank urchinwang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 3 March 2014
Dear Urchinwang,

We hope your return to NYC was a pleasant one. Thank you for your comment on Petit Lafitte being an escape from the big all inclusive hotels. That is one of the things we keep in mind when making decisions about the services, the amenities and policies of the hotel. We share your point of view that the rooms are old boutique. We have been improving the decorations, and fixtures gradually since 2010, we have made progress, but continue to work on that topic. Our manager Guillermo Fuentes personally went and checked the coffee maker issue, and found that the stains you mentioned are not mildew but apparently through time some guests leave the coffee makers on until all the coffee evaporates and as it burns, it leaves an almost impossible to remove mark in the bottom. I guess we need to find a way to prevent this from happening or if this happens, we need to replace the old pot with a new one, we agree. Something needs to be done with this. The mold on the crib was found to be true and the two oldest cribs were discarded and replaced with two new ones. There was a meeting with housekeeping staff where they the issue was addressed and we expect that this wont happen again.
Thank you for liking our beach better than the one of the hotel you stayed in while in Cancun. We like our little corner of the world.
As far as the road goes. The local government is working on the repaving of the main access road they are two thirds of the way done and in two more weeks they should finish.

Once again thank you for taking the time to share your opinion on Petit Lafitte, we wish you and your family many great travels in the rest of the year!

Kind Regards,

Ivan Fuentes
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New York City, New York
Level 6 Contributor
142 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2014

The Petit Lafitte is the perfect place to go if your priorities, like mine, are a beautiful beach, kind, accommodating staff, good food and clean well stocked rooms, where everything works. There's a game room for pool and ping pong and a very nice pool.
We booked early, directly with the hotel and were able to get the best beach facing bungalow right on the beach, at a very good rate. In the bungalow there's a small fridge, stocked with soft drinks and snacks you do pay for but you are generously supplied with free bottled water and there is room for your own stuff if you care to bring some.There's also coffee maker and coffee supplies replenished daily or more often if you need one. A king sized comfortable bed and adequate storage place.
Breakfast included a buffet of fresh fruit and juices, sweet and savory pasties and cereal but everything hot was made and served to order. I mentioned to our waiter that they'd run out of plain croissants and he put aside the next day for me without me even asking.
Dinner included a different soup every night, salads, antipasto, and deserts and except for the Mexican barbecue night buffet, which was quite good , there was a choice of two mains that were cooked and served to order.
It was unfortunately not the best weather and it was great to be right on the beach to take advantage of any good weather hours of the day and be able to make a quick escape to our veranda.
They played really good music at both the bar and dinner, live and canned and I really appreciated not having to listen all day to loud speakers calling me to cheesy activities and awful music which has been my experience at large resorts .
This is a great place to relax, enjoy the sea and sun and the quality and variety of the other guests, couples, friends, families from all over the world attests to that.
I would have liked better lighting in parts of our bungalow it,( although the lighted makeup mirror in our bathroom was better than any place I'd ever been),more pillows, the food a bit spicier, a TV (in rooms, not the bungalows) but would have cared less had the weather been better but beyond those minor details it was just lovely.
If you are looking for endless activities, getting drunk at a swim up bar while being blasted by incredibly bad music, this is not the place for you.
I recommend it to grownup, civilized people, with or without kids, who want a beautiful beach in a small resort, run by a gracious and friendly staff.
A first for me was David, the head honcho outside as we left waiting to say "Adios".
This is a place you want to return to and hopefully next time the weather will be kinder. If very good is an 80 and excellent is 100, my rating is 90.

Room Tip: If you want to be alone, book a bungalow. If you cant live without TV, get a room. Or compromise an...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
3 Thank Hollyssg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 18 February 2014
Dear Hollyssg,

Thank you very much for your lovely review on Petit Lafitte. We are very glad for all the aspects of your vacation that you loved, the beach, service, food, cleanliness of the rooms, et cetera. We are sorry that your week with us was a rainy one. However, it seems like you made the best of that and were attentive for the spaces where mother nature gave us a break. Thanks! We wanted to mention that we have more pillows available on request, dial 7 from your room and ask for them. It is that easy! The other one is about the spicy food, well as you can understand, we have to prepare our food to please the majority and sadly, the majority prefers mild.
Habanero sauce is available at the table, just ask the waiter! :). We are soooo very happy to hear that you think this is a place to return to. What an honor and a reward for our efforts, we hope to see you again next year, and promise better weather!

Best Regards,

Ivan Fuentes
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western ny state
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2014

Tucked in among huge all inclusives, this boutique hotel is a true getaway. While the rooms are rather spartan, they are clean and efficiently refreshed every morning. The grounds are immaculate. The beach and pool area are just right. Our room was on third floor with partial ocean view. There are also bungalows available. While they look appealing, the fact that there is sand right to the front steps seems to us that there would be sand inside on everything. The big resorts are set back from the beach whereas this hotel is literally on the beach. This place is quiet with no entertainment which was perfect for us.

The staff was helpful in getting a taxi into Playa Del Carmen and then the driver told us what to pay for return and to negotiate before getting into taxi. It is about a 10 min. drive into Playa.....which is a typical port stop for cruise ships.

Hotel set up a day trip to Chichen Itza which was amazing although the tour company was not! Book your transportation to and from airport thru hotel. Otherwise you will be overwhelmed (and ripped off) by transportation providers.

Room Tip: U get what you pay for. :-) Room price include breakfast and dinner. Lunches are available at the...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank suzieq77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 7 February 2014
Dear Suzieq77,

Thank you for taking the time to review Petit Lafitte after what was your first visit. We are glad that over-all you had a nice experience. Yes, being tucked in among a handful or large all inclusive mega-resorts makes the contrast so obvious. Thank you for mentioning the things you notice.
I wanted to just add some further info for possible readers that we have live entertainment on Wednesday (with a duet of jazz guitar and violin) on Saturdays with a group of Precolumbian dancers, who perform native Mexican dances and music and on Sundays we have a trio of two guitars and percussion performing Latin American. So we have a sprinkle here and there, but it is fair and true to say that we do not have a group I the staff that is ushering the guests into activities.  The good news is that we don’t see that happening ever, under the flag of Petit Lafitte. We hope that you reported whatever incident or service or lack thereof that caused your comment about the company that took you to Chichen. We do not want to work with companies that are incongruent with our standard of service. Please expand on the info for us.
We hope that you recommend Petit Lafitte to your friends and that perhaps we get to see you again, in sunny weather.

Kind Regards,

I.F.
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Allentown, Pennsylvania
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2014

We traveled to the old Capitan Lafitte when it was somewhat north of the current property and really enjoyed both our stays. So, now that Lafitte has returned to the Playa area we decided to give them another try. I'm very glad we did! The staff is very pleasant, kind, and responsive, the new property is lovely, and the vibe is still very low key. The guests include lots of Europeans and families, and everyone tries to speak a little Spanish (although the staff all speak pretty good English).

A few tips - 1) ask for a room on the top floor. The furniture is heavy and wooden and when your upstairs neighbors start moving it around at midnight it's a jarring experience. 2) Don't swim in the surf right in front of the hotel - there are rocks and coral you can't see, but the waves push you down onto them (instead, go slightly north and swim near the little blue boat). 3) Know that tips are included in the price. This is not clear when you sign your checks for alcohol, but it is broken down on the (pretty confusing) receipt you get at the end of the trip. 4) When approaching the property by car, take the "Princess Road" (near the Princess resort) rather than turning at the sign on the highway - the Princess access road is much better.

Overall we really enjoyed ourselves. David, Lorena, Javier, Valdemoro and the rest of the staff made our stay very pleasant. (If only the weather had been as cooperative!)

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the top floor. The furniture is heavy and wooden and when your upstairs neighbors...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
2 Thank Mori M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, 5 February 2014
So… You are an distant, traveler, who walked the sands of the Old Lafitte?
Now on different suns and different moons returns to find our new sands, but the same vibe, and the same faces. The familiar feel of an open heart, a peaceful glance to the sea, a rested body beneath a palm tree.
Blessed are the lives of those who return, just as much as the lives of the ones who they meet, over the years, in a space of peace…

Have a wonderful year Dear MoriM, May our paths meet again…Happy in a not so distant time!

Ivan Fuentes
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Additional Information about Petit Lafitte

Property: Petit Lafitte
Address: Carretera Cancun - Chetumal km 296 + 2.1 | Xcalacoco, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#6 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#13 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Petit Lafitte 3.5*
Number of rooms: 50
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Petit Lafitte Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Petit Lafitte Playa Del Carmen
Petit Lafitte Mexico/Riviera Maya - Playa Del Carmen

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