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“Fab location, stunning beach”
Review of Ahau Tulum

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Ahau Tulum
Ranked #8 of 98 Hotels in Tulum
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 5 March 2013

Ahau is a really cute place, another beautiful structure on Tulum's stunning coastline. We had a Bali hut which was really cute. Loved the outdoor bathroom! Not hot water when we were there but that wasn't a big deal for us. The beach is beautiful - Tulum is an incredible place. Lovely food but it was a bit let down by the service. Staff are friendly but it lacks someone overseeing everything - it took about 5 minutes to be given a menu when there's 4 staff watching you arrive. But I'm sure this is being worked on - it's still a new hotel.

The hostel rooms did mean that there were a lot of people in the communal areas drinking tap water and using the free wifi which took a bit of a shine off the luxury feel, and our private hammock was in use by someone with a baby for an afternoon and I didn't feel I could kick her out!

It does has a lovely vibe though, and if we were in to yoga this place would be even better. It has a couple of downsides which I'm sure can be worked on, but overall we really enjoyed our stay and I'd recommend it.

Room Tip: Bali hut - we had a top and bottom hut, and preferred the bottom. You get a back door into the bathr...
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank 123sun123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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677 - 683 of 992 reviews

Reviewed 26 February 2013

Two quotes came to mind when we got here: one from Monty Python - "And now for something completely different" and the other from an Eagles song - "this could be heaven or this could be hell". Well, it WAS completely different and we loved it. There were six of us and not all of us loved every single thing about it, but some of us did love every single thing. Our ages, by the way, ran from 14 to 65. For me and my wife, although we enjoyed our two night stay, I must say that after two nights we were looking forward to a room that didn't have sand blowing under the door (it wasn't a big deal though).
Take the Bali out of "Bali Hut" and you have what they are - huts. They're made with stacked saplings, and as you can imagine, there are gaps between the saplings. It's a cool look, but it lets wind blow through. That's good since they're not air conditioned, but bad because they're on the beach. And I mean ON THE BEACH. You can't get any closer to the water than this (well, unless you had the cabin between us and the water). But on the beach means sand. Add wind and you've got blowing sand. One odd thing is that, to keep the sand from blowing through the walls, they've hung a piece of plastic on each wall, which also stops the air, so they can be warm during the daytime. With all the gaps and plastic, there's not a lot of privacy with the huts. That shouldn't be much of a problem since you're going to be spending most of your time wearing as few clothes as possible. Each hut (with a beach level room and an upper room) has a toilet and shower attached to the back. It's a pit toilet, but don't freak out - it's about the nicest, cleanest pit toilet I've ever seen. Even the shower is nice, although ours was visible from the upper room's window.

My grand daughter stayed in a room in the "guest house". We wouldn't have liked that (no window) but she did (it was separate from the grown ups but still close).

Although we had a mosquito net around the bed, we never had a problem with bugs - there was a constant wind all along the beach.
The place is a mix of buildings, most of them open air. It's nice eating in a restaurant with no walls. There's an upstairs yoga studio - open air. Very nice.
The hotel "vibe" is decidedly hippie, as is the entire beach road. There was a bit of topless on the beach, but tasteful. Nothing lewd. My daughter said the area was Trust Fund Hippie. My son called it Trustifarian. They both loved it. It was our favorite part of a trip that included Cancun and Merida.
We started and ended each day with long walks down the beach. Our kids walked down the beach road to a musical event at another hotel. It was just really, really nice. And completely different.

Room Tip: If you get a Bali Hut, try for an upper one. More privacy, a ceiling fan, better view.
  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank gearheart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 February 2013

First off, I think it's important to state what my expectations were for this hotel because I believe reviews are based on whether someone's expectations were or weren't met. So, I was travelling to Mexico on my own and going to Ahau Tulum expecting a peaceful and relaxing vacation. I wasn't expecting any kind of luxury (I was staying in the guestrooms), I was expecting a fun and relaxed atmosphere. I can tell you that is exactly what I got!

Before I left I was reading all the excellent reviews and was starting to doubt if they were true because I couldn't believe the place had such great reviews! Now that I have been i can tell you that the reviews reflect reality! I was greeted by a warm and welcoming Patricia; after a 17 hour journey to get there, I was so pleased to have someone take good care of me! Patricia showed me to my room which was not on the beach, but very close to it. I was in one of the guestrooms (single bed) and the shared bathroom (both sexes, staff, etc.) was under my bedroom. The bedroom is quite small, but I wasnt going there to spend my days in my bedroom anyways so I didnt care very much. The bed was oh so very comfortable and the cleaning ladies made the bed and gave me a new towel every day. For 35$/night, I think that's a pretty good deal! You should know that Tulum is far from electricity lines and that is why they use little electricity. There is no a/c (made no difference for me as the fan was enough to keep me cool at night) and they use small lights and candles at night, which just makes the place that much more charming!

The food is very good. I had breakfast there almost every morning as well as lunch and was always delighted with my meals. There are also many other restaurants at a walking distance from the hotel, and it'll cost you 85 pesos by taxi to go "downtown" for other restaurants. (Downtown is maybe a 10 to 15 drive away). Ahau offers daily yoga classes and many other places around offer some as well. They also offer different activities (extra cost) such as kitesurfing, paddleboarding, cenote visit, etc.

Patricia was very knowledgeable and gave great advice about what activities to do and what to visit. The other staff were less helpful, but i always refered to Patricia or Mauricio, the manager of the kitesurfing school associated with the hotel.

The beach is just gorgeous. It's not crowded at all, the water is warm and the ocean floor is soft sand, no rocks! You can walk on the beach and stop at pretty much any hotel for a drink or a snack as they pretty much all have their own restaurant and bar.

I was travelling by myself and was expecting to meet more solo travellers because of the guestroom options. Although I did meet other travellers, this isn't a hostel type place. There are lots of families, couples and friends of the owners.

All in all I definetly recommend Ahau to anyone looking for a quiet, relaxing and charming place to stay while in Tulum!

Room Tip: There are three single bed guestrooms. The middle one is very tiny with barely any space between the...
  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank Camsap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2013

The white sugar sand beach and curving coconut palms make you feel like you have stepped into a photo-mural. The whole place is magical; crazy turquoise water, palm leaf roofs, open air bar/restaurant/lobby, great food, great drinks, and soft sand paths between huts that let you put your sandals away for the the rest of your stay. Yoga classes for anyone that want them, kite surfing with Mauricio, and cenote swimming/diving as well as the Tulum ruins nearby. Ahau is a beautiful place.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Linska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2013

Nestled in a tranquil and beautiful part of Tulum, Ahau is a very nice, boho- chic,and comfortable boutique hotel. The beach is steps away from most rooms and there are many things about the hotel that I really enjoyed. There are a few things that were a bit annoying but were easily forgotten since one was in such a gorgeous setting. Things I loved: location -a gorgeous and clean beach right outside your door, excellent bed and linens made for restful sleep and naps during the day, the staff was friendly and very attentive and the food and drinks at the restaurant were surprisingly good. Try the tuna salad. The yoga classes taught by Melamie were very relaxing and enjoyable but classes taught by Tere were disjointed and confusing. I loved the tower on site where one can watch the sundown. Highly recommend that.
Now for the things that need improvement: showers.....no one wants to take a cold shower after a day on the beach. The showers were consistently unreliable....sometimes there was hot water and sometimes not.
Wifi. Very spotty but reliable in the lounge area of the hotel. We stayed in room 13 which was lovely but our sleep was interrupted by the noise in the restaurant that starts at 7:30 in the morning. Again not a big deal. So bring some ear plugs just in case or request a quiet room away from the restaurant. These were very minor annoyances as the hotel is really lovely and the staff did a great job to make us all comfortable.
Now, I will also note that our room was 300 a night and at times I felt that was a bit excessive. However, they did have much more reasonably priced rooms on the property.
It may just be me but I felt that all of Tulum was overpriced from 6 dollar bottles of water, to 25 dollar sun screen in the local shops, to $10.00 watered down drinks at trendy Casa Jaguar. It was sticker shock from the time we arrived to the time we left. If you find boho jungle chic exciting and love seeing fabulous and wealthy yoginis prancing around a beach then Tulum you will love. For me, there was a sense of slight pretension to the town but that's not to say it wasn't fun or fabulous. There is no denying that Tulum is beautiful and intoxicating but surprisingly pricey.

Room Tip: At the restaurant try the tuna salad and one of their amazing vegan muffins.
  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Tanquerochicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ahau T, Gerente at Ahau Tulum, responded to this reviewResponded 26 February 2013

Hola,

We really appreciate your review, I had the opportunity to meet you and your friends, as you said the hotel is located in a gorgeous beach and the setting is very nice, but we try very hard everyday to make the best Hotel in Tulum, not only by providing what nature already gave us but also with very well done rooms, unfortunally since Tulum it's off the grid it is very high maintance, we had some problems with the water system since all the pipes are under the sand and it tents to shift every day. also our hot water system is solar and has a gas heater as a back up which has created some issues too the mix of these two systems.
Regarding the prices in Tulum yes there are some places that the prices are a little high, we try to keep our prices of the rooms and the restaurant as low as we can altohugh the maintence cost is very high on the beach, also the drinking water in the hotel is free for all our guest.

Please comeback any time and once again thanks for writing a review.

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Reviewed 3 February 2013

As total hotel sybarites, my wife and I were thrilled to find Ahau Tulum barely a year ago as they were nearing their opening. We are about to return for our fourth visit and it keeps getting better. As beach hotels go it doesn't get any better. You step out of your beach villa onto the beautiful white sand and can run or walk for miles along the waterfront in both directions . The design and quality of the rooms is unrivaled in Tulum and provide a very high end experience. Even the master suites are less than $400 a night and are excellent value. The owners Dave and Milana live on the property and are omnipresent. They and the extremely professional, user friendly staff know exactly what they are doing and could not be more accommodating. The scene is extremely laid back and despite raising the bar in Tulum hotel quality they have maintained the great karma experience which made Tulum famous. The restaurant is excellent and provides a full range of healthful and delicious food options on the menu as well as a comprehensive fully stocked bar. Each time we have gone back , they have made further improvements which we would not have thought were needed. We are looking forward to our next visit in two weeks time and really hope we can keep going four times a year since this is exactly what we have been looking for for years and we are spoiled travelers who do not settle for anything less than outright excellence . Congratulations Team Ahau

Room Tip: All are excellent
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Walshmichael
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ahau T, Gerente at Ahau Tulum, responded to this reviewResponded 8 February 2013

Hola,

We appreciate your kind review, it is our pleasure to serve each one of our guest and try to provide the Ahau experience, a place where you come to relax and enjoy the beauty that nature has generoulsy give to Tulum, the ocean, the sand, the weather and the jungle just are the perfect elements of what you have said in your review, heaven on earth.
We also add to this wonderful place some amazing rooms with an outstanding view and all the amenities that you need on your vacation, as time goes by we try to keep adding more since we just turn 1 year old.
Thanks for coming back for the 4th time, can't wait to see you back.
Best Regards

Pepe Escalante

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2013

We stayed in a top floor junior suite for 4 nights. Overall we had a nice experience - the room and the view were both beautiful, and the beach was great (cannot emphasize that enough). The restaurant was also a solid choice.

That said, we did have a few problems with our stay, and did not feel that the front desk staff was initially very welcoming, especially for the price point we were paying. On many occasions the staff was busy taking care of issues that the people paying $20/night to stay in the guest house were having, leaving us with a lower level of service despite the higher charge for our stay. Once you were able to get the attention of a staff member, the service was quite good.

The hotel is not an easy walk to the main section of restaurants (no sidewalks/crazy drivers), but it is easy to catch a taxi outside at dinner time, and there is a lot of great food around. We ordered breakfast to be delivered to our bed on the beach, which was great. In theory you could have room service, but you would have to go to the restaurant and order it first.

As the previous review stated, there was one morning when the toilet would not flush due to the tank not refilling. At this time, there was also no water for the shower or sink. Since this happened around 6am and the front desk was not staffed until 7:30/8am, we poured the drinking water provided into the tank to get the toilet to flush (this was not something that you could let sit for a few hours). All of the toilets in the area are compost toilets - given understanding what that means, the bathroom trash cans should perhaps be emptied more often (or maybe have a diaper genie), as they start to get an odor in the heat.

One of the bathrobes had a very large hole in it (as in the entire pocket had been ripped off), which we discovered on the 2nd day there.

We found that, in this room at least, the mosquito netting was not decorative. On two occasions after the maid had cleaned the room, there were bird droppings on the bed. There are no screens on the slats and the thatched roof has a space that allows for nature to come into the room.

Despite the problems above, we had a great time in Tulum and would definitely return to the area (but would probably choose a different hotel). The bali huts looked like a good value and the master suites looked beautiful, but I don't think the junior suites were worth the amount charged.

Room Tip: Beach level junior suites have air conditioners, the upper level do not.
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank PauvreLapin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ahau Tulum

Address: Carretera a Boca Paila Km 7.5, Tulum 77760, Mexico (Formerly Esmeralda-K)
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Tulum
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Tulum
#4 Best Value Hotel in Tulum
#5 Family Hotel in Tulum
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Tulum
#11 Romantic Hotel in Tulum
Price Range: £44 - £332 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ahau Tulum 3*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ecological luxury Hotel with a Guest House in Tulum Beach in Mexico ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ahau Tulum Hotel Tulum
Esmeralda k Hotel Tulum
Esmeralda k Tulum

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