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La Zebra Colibri Boutique Hotel
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Reviews (1,137)
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Reviewed 7 May 2009

Tulum is such a gorgeous, serene location it can be a bit challenging to remain objective when reviewing La Zebra. My husband and I LOVED Tulum, LOVED our little ocean view cabana (no. 3) but were bitterly disappointed with the front desk service.

Please note we were probably one of just three couples staying there (place was empty because of the swine flu scare) and except for Mario at the front desk who checked us in and was helpful (arranged a tour to the Bio Sphere with Cesiak which was excellent) the other front desk staff (lady with long black hair) couldn't have cared less. When we asked repeatedly when Tulum ruins were scheduled to open (since Mario was not there towards the end of our stay) she claimed there was no place to call and ask and all we could do was drive to the front gate and see if there were any signs posted. Well there were no signs, only taxi drivers standing around trying to pick up clueless tourists like us and one of them told us the ruins would be closed until Saturday. Suffice it to say the day we checked out (Wednesday), as we were driving away towards Playa we discovered the ruins had reopened when we happened to glance towards the parking lot. We were SOOOO DISAPPOINTED since we had told Indifferent Front Desk Lady how anxious we were to see the ruins and were willing to squeeze in a tour the morning we checked out (I believe the ruins open at 7am).

So unfortunately based on Indifferent Front Desk Lady I would definitely hesitate to recommend La Zebra to my family or friends...there are so many beautiful properties along the beach and as a tourist who was determined to stay and support the Mexican economy by not canceling because of the influenza scare, La Zebra clearly let us down. Because they have such a charming property (sofa set overlooking beach, salsa class etc.) they clearly feel they do not need to go the extra mile to please their clients which is really a shame (we were celebrating our wedding anniversary and out of the four hotels we stayed, La Zebra was the only property that did not do something special i.e. towel animal, complimentary champagne etc.).

Go there for the cute cabanas and beautiful beach setting but don't expect much more.......my husband and I will definitely go back to Tulum (gotto see those ruins we missed) but will stay somewhere else next time.

Stayed: May 2009, travelled as a couple
2  Thank ihopeyoudancer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 April 2009

5 nights in Cabana #2:

Cons-
1. Not enough beach umbrellas and beach chairs for all guests. It is totally unacceptable that guests have to "compete" for a place to sit.
2. Beach chair cushions are worn, stained, and malformed. They look gross!! Who wants to sit on these?
3. On Monday night, the bar BLASTED music until after 9 PM. It was so loud that we decided if it happened again we'd have to check-out early.
4. Bed mattress is very uncomfortable and you only get two pillows.
5. Garbage cans around the property seemed to alwasy be overflowing with trash and the parking lot always was littered with beer bottles and garbage.
6. Housekeeping and management do not understand hospitality. Bar staff is pretty good.
7. Showers are salt water and we never felt clean.
8. You can't flush the toliet paper and the waste basket for toliet paper doesn't even have a lid. This must violate some kind of public health law.
9. The property is totally unsecured. Anyone can walk onto the property anytime of day or night.
10. They provide no boogie boards or other kinds of activity incidentals.

Pros:
1. Cabana was nicely laid out, had good view and good breeze.
2. Drinks from bar were delicious.
3. Food was ok. We are vegetarian and so beans, rice, salsa, guac was our menu. Nothing exceptional, but it met our needs ok.

**We stayed at Suenos Tulum for 3 nights before checking into La Zebra and LOVE Suenos!!! It was everything we wanted from a beach vacation: quiet, private, uncomplicated in every way.

Stayed: April 2009, travelled as a couple
5  Thank WestSeattleSaysHi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LaZebraManager, Manager at La Zebra Colibri Boutique Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 April 2010

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback. We have read your issues carefully and have made a number of changes and improvements that we hope you would find address your concerns. We have new beach lounges and mattresses that our restricted to guest use only.
We are always concerned about security along the beach. We do have 24 hours sevurity guards patrolling the property, but along Tulum beach it is very difficult because we do not want to erect giant concrete walls and barbed wire. SO we encourage everyone to keep their doors locked when they leave and put their valuables in the room safes.
We also are diligent about emptying rubbish bins on the property, so ae hope this was an isolated issue.
All hotels along the beach request that toilet paper is placed into bins and we recognize this is not customary in the US or other western countries but we are trying to protect the environment.
If you ever plan another trip to Tulum please let us try to make your stay a perfect one...

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 April 2009

I found this place with my family last summer when we were looking for a place to eat dinner. I was blown away by the beautiful beach and the atmosphere of this place - oh and the AMAZING fresh sugar cane mojitos. So after a great dinner on the beach I decided I had to go back and actually stay there. I went back the end of April 2009 with a girlfriend and we had a great time. It was so relaxing and beautiful. The waitstaff is very nice. Most of the waiters are very charming and always have a smile. The food is pretty good and well priced. We ate there a few times and also ventured off to some of the other hotels for some meals - highly recommend Posada Margarita for Italian cuisine - YUMMM. The rooms were really nice and cleaned every day with fresh towels. It is a bit of a rustic feel but if you are going to Tulum then that is probably what you are looking for. I can't say enough about this place other than GO HERE if you are going to Tulum. Prices are very moderate especially for the Jungle Rooms which is where I stayed. I will definitely go back again!

  • Stayed: April 2009, travelled with friends
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1  Thank saviorsister
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 April 2009

My husband and I have traveled extensively around the world, and we can happily recommend La Zebra. Being able to lay in bed in the morning, underneath the mosquito canopy, feel the cool ocean breeze, and watch the waves crash on the shore is my idea of paradise. There are some things I wish we had- like locally ground organic coffee and fresh squeezed orange juice hand delivered to our room every morning, but COME ON! For $200-- it could not have been more perfect! The only problem is that everyone else agrees! Grab your lounge chair first thing in the morning because other vacationers don't mind the signs that say, "For La Zebra guests only." The ceviche is a must and the margaritas had some sort of unique floral essence. Delicious. We found the wait staff to be attentive and charming, but we are fluent in Spanish so that may have helped. We will return!

  • Stayed: April 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Iheartvacay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 April 2009

My boyfriend and I stayed at La Zebra for 5 nights in early April 2009. We stayed in cabana #14, one of the new "jungle" rooms across the street from the beach for $150/night. This was an excellent value as the beach was just across the street and the beachfront rooms were $225/night at the time.
The cabana was clean and nice with a king-sized bed which took up almost the entire cabana. The bed was very firm which we liked. I couldn't imagine having more than 2 people stay in the cabana.
La Zebra appeared to be one of the newer/nicer hotels on the Tulum beach hotel strip. I expected a luxury camping experience and was pleasantly surprised.
The beach is amazing!!!!

Pros:
-amazing beach-- miles upon miles of pristine white sand beaches with clear caribbean water. It's quiet, it's mellow, no shouting/drunk people or megaphone announcements of happy hour and wet t-shirt contests. This is not Cancun!
-fresh sugar cane mojitos
-decent moderately priced restaurant
-housekeeping was prompt and replaced towels daily
-overall nicely designed cabana (aside from toilet!!!-- see below)

Cons:
-occasional insects in cabana (probably can't be helped because it's a beachy/jungle-y environment
-no moderate setting on ceiling fan
-housekeeping replaced bedsheets one time with ones that had a mysterious stain on it
-TOILET in cabana has no door!!! there is a 1/2 wall that shields the toilet from the rest of the cabana, but there is absolutely no privacy. I don't know who is okay with this setup but we certainly were not. The 1/2 wall for the shower is fine, but for the toilet??? Come on.
-after running hot water in the shower, for about 5 minutes there was an awful stench that would arise from under the cabana. I mentioned this to the front desk who shrugged and said they would look into it, but not sure that they did. I didn't notice this smell coming from other cabanas.
-there could be a few more beach chairs and shades--
-not a whole lot of service with a smile
-needs luggage racks-- there was a chair and a small bookshelf on which to put our belongings but suitcases and larger bags needed to go on the floor-- not the greatest because I was afraid an insect would get in my luggage.
-a faucet for footwash outside the door would have been awesome since our feet were always sandy/dusty.
-the "private pool" for the jungle rooms was swampy and uninviting. I wish this was either a clean hot tub or else closed off. I was terrified of accidentally dropping my keys in the pool and having to go in to fish them out...

It sounds like I have a lot of complaints, but I am picky about hotels.
Overall I loved it, I would return to Tulum and stay at La Zebra in a heartbeat.

We rented a car in Cancun (Executive Car rental through ACE website for discount) which I would advise as the roads are easy to navigate and we had a lot of freedom to explore. I took the advice of other travelers and made sure the car rental folks marked off every last tiny ding and scratch on the car when we picked it up, checked that there were 2 license plates, checked for the spare tire, and there was no problem when we returned the car.

Bring a flashlight! Outside Tulum town, it's pretty dark as most everything on the beach runs on generators.

Use mosquito spray-- especially if venturing to Siaan Kaan bioreserve-- I forgot the spray one afternoon and got eaten alive within 2 minutes down there.

Stock up on water in town-- there are a couple of small bottles in the room for brushing teeth, but we ended up buy gallons of water for beach-time and excursions.

Check out Urge Tacos outside of town-- the best fish tacos with do-it-yourself fixins!
Flor de michoacan in town for gelato/ice cream-- homemade coconut ice cream bars covered in chocolate and coconut-- to die for!!!

  • Stayed: April 2009, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank dlowe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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