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“A really great place....if you enjoy 'basic'!”

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Cabanas Los Arrecifes
Ranked #89 of 98 Hotels in Tulum
Reviewed 9 April 2014

I have to agree with most of the reviews on TA about Los Arrecifes! It is one of the prettiest properties on Tulum beach but the facilities and service leave a lot to be desired, to say the least. The area between the room units and the beach is basically a palm tree grove, with row upon row of palm trees, thus assuring lots of welcoming shade during the day. The beach in front of the property is great. Unfortunately, the rest of the place goes down hill...The units, each with an outdoor patio (equipped with 2 chairs and a small table and a hammock) are spread out on a 2-storey L-shaped building, the long part of the L perpendicular to the beach, the short end of the L facing the palm grove. The lobby and restaurant are opposite the long part of the L. There's also a single large independent unit right on the beach with wrap-around windows. As well, there are also two cabanas with sand floors in the grove itself. The units vary in size and furnishing. Some have a single king-size bed, others two double beds, but all are downright 'basic', with very little amenities. In my unit, the sink was separate from the shower and toilet. Water is somewhat salty and pressure is quite low. The plumbing of the sink leaked and I had to put a towel under it to catch the water. All the fixtures are eaten away by the salty air. Electricity comes on only at dusk and shuts off at midnight.
The staff is OK, but not overly friendly and their English is limited at best. The keys to the patio doors of the units are a serious problem as the locks on the doors are also rusted by the salt, which makes entry into your room a chore. One afternoon, wishing to take a walk on the beach, after attempting to lock my door for more than 10 minutes with no success, I finally left it unlocked. When I came back, my door was locked and I had to go to the lobby to ask the staff to open the door. The man scolded me for having left my door unlocked...but it took him 5 minutes to open the bleeding door!
There's a huge sand dune between the units and the parking lot, which presents a problem when you have to lug your luggage from your car to your unit.
The outdoor restaurant offers a limited menu at somewhat higher prices than elsewhere in Tulum, though the cheeseburgers and fries I ordered the only time I ate there were very good.
Prices for the rooms are cheaper than elsewhere on Tulum beach (given the quality of what's offered, that's understandable!) and extra charges are laid if you pay by credit card.
With all these drawbacks I still consider Los Arrecifes to represent a decent deal as long as you don't expect 5-star amenities. Just enjoy the glorious beach!

Room Tip: Personally, I recommend the downstairs units.
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
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3  Thank RAPLongueuil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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12 - 18 of 71 reviews

Reviewed 21 March 2014

The hotel is just horrible.
No service at all. There's no floor it's all sand. EVERYWHERE.
Rooms are so basic that literally it only includes the BED and a cheap fan.
Windows without glass. No electricity during day time.
The people serving the hotel are mayans. They are not so servicial.
The only good thing is that it's in the beach... and its CHEAP.

Room Tip: If you are staying here... maybe Cabañas are better. But the rooms are awful.
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Josué I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 March 2014 via mobile

We were very lucky to find this hotel. We occupied 3 bedrooms, 2 singles and 1 double. All of them we're clean. The 2 single bedrooms were in the first floor and they have a small patio in the front with ocean view were you can hang out (in our case there was room for 7 people). The double bedroom was in the upper floor and it had a huge terrace/balcony so it was great for sunrise/sunset. The beach was clean, peaceful and quiet. The staff was very friendly and the property is quite spacious. There is no pool but who needs one with the beautiful beach and ocean right on your fingertips? Simple, extraordinary and reasonably priced!

  • Stayed: March 2014
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Thank MokitosTravelbug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 February 2014

First of all, I respectfully disagree with reviewers who called the staff apathetic, unhelpful and rude. Please keep in mind where you are - in a region where the locals speaks the Mayan language FIRST, Spanish second and if you are lucky they will speak English but the fact that they do not speak your language should not be mistaken for apathy or rudeness. Despite some language barriers, everywhere around Tulum the people do their best to service and help tourists who have pretty much come into their region and built luxury hotels around their birthplace.

STAFF: The one staff member we met, Alfredo, is a SWEETHEART. He does everything there - receptionist, cook and manager. He is a bit shy and will warm up to you if you speak Spanish (as we do) but again, the language barrier may prevent him from being overly friendly if you do not speak Spanish but that's not to say that he is not helpful.

The HOTEL: We were very pleased with what we got. A lot of people talk about the "cabanas" with sand floors. I would like to clarify: there are only 2 cabanas with sand floors. If you want to stay on the beach, pay close to nothing, you have the option to stay in one of these super "primitive, rough" cabanas. It is a tiny space with a sand floor and one bed. We looked at these and decided not to stay in them because you have to use the "communal" bathroom which is all the way at the entrance of the property. When you look at it, though, you know what you are getting so I do not understand how people can complain knowing what they are getting!

PS: For a larger group there are two large cabanas on either side of the property - in the most frontal area of the beach with terraces and they look absolutely beautiful (no sand floors).

We stayed in Room #1. It does have a thatched roof so it has the cabana feel. It has a terrace with a hammock, table and chairs, a king sized bed, sofa bed and dresser. Most places on the beach will NOT have air conditioners so do not expect that. There is a fan in the room, though. Electricity is on from 5:30 PM to 5:30 AM which we were ok with because when we woke up, we left and didn't come back until the evening hours.

Overall, my ONLY complaint is the water pressure (close to nothing). There is hot water (takes about 10 minutes to turn hot) but I would have loved to take a shower with even a teeny bit more of pressure. Regardless, we paid $115 a night to be ON the beach - you really can't beat that. Some of the higher end places charge upwards of $250.00 per night. If you have the money, sure, why not stay in one of the higher end places but we were traveling on a budget and this was a PERFECT price for a PERFECT location.

Would I recommend? Absolutely! You can't go wrong with the price.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Chrysma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2014

Cabanas arrecifes is well located, on the beach. This is the only good point of this hotel.
I had a bad experience in this hotel, I recommend you to choose another one.
I reserved for the high season of Christmas holidays. I do understand they are busy during this period but they do not provide any good service.
First, the website is not actualized: prices are wrong, they don t have laundry service... They raise the price of 10 dollars each night during christmas holidays, but they don't specify it on their web page. (You have to add 10$ of the price indicated for december to april)
Then, the "cabañas" are really rustic, you don t have enough place with luggage, since it is a sandy floor you have sand everywhere on the bed, obviously you can t catch the wifi network. Wind is going through the room. You cannot sleep well.
the worst is the service. They are unpleasant. We had a problem with the rental car company, we asked if we could make a brief phone call and they didn t accept, neither told us where we could make this phone call.
They perfectly know that the hotel during christmas holidays gets full, so they don't care about providing good service to their clients. We left after one night.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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3  Thank olivia b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 January 2014

at the end of our beautiful vacation on the Riviera Maya we stayed at this hotel for one night and while at beach someone came thru back window ..sand on bed told all..they stole out ipads and ipods and all photos gone! When I told attendant at desk he did not understand me. Dont leave any windows open here as relaxed as it looks and be sure to speak Spanish. The beach is beautiful here and memories in my heart forever. Our neighbors from Germany were also robbed of their same equipment on same afternoon.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with friends
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3  Thank 68dkny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2014

Very highly recommended for some types of travelers. I have great memories staying here.

Location: Arrecifes is in roughly the best part of the Tulum beach strip, in my opinion. Go a bit north towards the ruins, and you have too many tour bus, cruise, daytripper, and mega resort traffic. South is beautiful but a little far away from restaurants and activities. Here in the center, there are good restaurants and bars, but it's relatively quiet and uncrowded, and plenty of taxis so you don't have to wait.

Beach: It's an unimaginably good stretch of beach, and Arrecifes may have the best spot, due to their large semi-private area with really nice hammocks, swings, and even a little tower. We explored many nearby cabanas and we didn't see anything close to as nice as Arrecifes's beach area.

Restaurant: Not great. Eat elsewhere. There are many good restaurants nearby. If I could make one change to Arrecifes it would be adding good coffee service. The restaurant patio area is nice, though.

Rooms: Comfortable! The showers could be nicer and the doors could be upgraded, but this is a cabana on the best beach in the world, not a luxury hotel. We got a room with two beds here, which worked perfectly, and is pretty rare in Tulum.

Service: They didn't speak English and I don't speak Spanish, but I have a feeling even if I did I wouldn't get much attention. That was fine with me! Rooms and facilities were cleaned every day, as was the beach. If you expect to need a concierge or attention from a hotel rep, go elsewhere.

Room tips: First, don't bother with the rooms in the very back away from the beach - this applies pretty much everywhere on the Tulum beach strip. Generator noise, cars parking, and traffic on the road make it less than paradise. No problem whatsoever in the middle/beachside rooms, however. Second, only get a sand floor cabana if you really understand what this means. There are only a couple of sand floor cabanas at Arrecifes.

You should stay here if you're a mostly-independent traveller and are most interested in the beach, exploring nearby places, and are OK with less than luxury in your room.

You shouldn't stay here if you want a fancy hotel room and top notch restaurant on site, or if you need attention / concierge services from your hotel.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank rackoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cabanas Los Arrecifes

Address: 77780, Tulum | A.P. 83 CP77780, Tulum, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Tulum
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#52 On the Beach Hotel in Tulum
Price Range: £15 - £89 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 245
Also Known As:
Cabanas Los Arrecifes Tulum

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