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“Large Resort, but Still Feels Intimate”

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Valentin Imperial Maya
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 June 2014

Overall
My husband and I just returned from our 7-night stay at Valentin Imperial Maya and had a wonderful time. The resort is beautiful with lots of landscaped walkways. We stayed in building 1 in a Silver Junior Suite and loved the large Jacuzzi tub and comfortable king sized bed. The resort is quite large, but building 1 is located close to the bars and restaurants that are in the main building, so it was really only a five minute walk to the main building (if you turn right) as well as a 5 minute walk to the main pool (if you turn left). The beach was a few minutes beyond the pool. We never had to take a shuttle around the resort, but they are available. You can hear the evening entertainment from where we were in building 1, but we travel with a noise-maker (rain/white noise/etc.) and it was sufficient in drowning out the party music on the nights when we chose not to participate.

Pool/Beach
The pool is a huge salt water pool and the temperature was perfect. It seemed like one side of the pool was more of a party-side and the other was more of a relaxing side which was great, because you could wander around based upon what you were in the mood for. The beach was beautiful with clear water and soft sand. We are not beach people though so we spent most of our time at the pool.

Restaurants
We tried every restaurants except for The Corner, and most of the time the food was very good. We loved the Mexican restaurant and the Hibachi (prior reservations are required for Hibachi). The Italian and Indonesian restaurants were good. The Restaurant Mar & Tierra was okay (and the most casual dinner restaurant as every other one requires men to wear long pants). We were not fans of the French restaurant at all. We are foodies though, so take that into consideration. Overall, we enjoyed the food at the resort. We also liked that there was a dress code for the evening dining. The service in every restaurant was excellent.

Entertainment
They offered at least one activity every hour from 9:00am – 4:00pm. We were there mainly to relax, so we did not participate in many activities. We did the cooking lessons and learned how to make pico de gallo, guacamole, and paella. We also did a Spanish lesson, and we learned to make friendship bracelets. The night time entertainment exceeded our expectations, and they had several different performances per night usually.

Privilege Club
We did the privilege club and have mixed feelings about this since it is pretty pricey. We loved that we had a poolside cabana reserved for us every day. There was no need to get to the pool early in order to get a good spot; we could show up whenever we wanted. The free lobster was tasty, but we only ordered it twice. The privilege club concierges were wonderful, and it was nice to be able to make reservations for dinner so that we didn’t have to wait. Overall, it was a wonderful experience, but honestly we do not know if it was worth the price. That being said, we would probably sign up for the privilege club if/when we go back.

Photography
We opted to do a photography session with one of their photographers. David was artistic, professional, and friendly. We enjoyed spending time with him (the shoot took about an hour), and he made us feel very comfortable. We were very happy with the photos and it was a nice service since we hadn’t had professional pictures done in about four years. The package prices were in the several hundred dollar range, but I’m not sure if they do smaller packages or al a carte items.

Staff
The privilege club staff was fantastic. Edgar, our pool concierge, was wonderful and took great care of us. He greeted us each day with a handshake and chat. He also laid towels out for us so we did not have to go get them. He made our dinner reservations and brought us drinks as well. He was wonderful. Luis was another privilege club concierge that was great. He checked us in and the one day we actually did have an issue with another guest, he dealt with it promptly and professionally. For the bartenders, Lourdes and Jesus took wonderful care of us at the Martini Bar and the Plaza. Audel was fantastic at the Earth bar. For the entertainment staff, we loved Malaka, Raphael, and Kara, as well as the chef Salvador who did fantastic cooking lessons.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank ripcorde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 23 June 2014

Dear Recent VIM Guests from Maryland

Thank you for such wonderful comments regarding your vacation at our VIM.

It brings us great pleasure to read reviews such as yours. We truly appreciate the feedback of your experiences and we are very happy to hear that we were able to surpass all expectations .

We took good note of your observations regarding the French restaurant with the F&B Manager in order to take the appropriate measures and improve it in the future.

We look forward in welcoming you back for your 2nd visit in a very near future.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any requests you may have.

E mail : customercare@valentinmaya.com

Receive our warmest regards,

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4,919 - 4,925 of 12,086 reviews

Reviewed 21 June 2014

Have stayed on the Riviera Maya twenty times over the past ten years. Vacationed at Secrets, Excellence, Eldorado establishments etc always staying five star. We found that the Valentin Imperial compares very well with all of these. The cuisine in fact has been superior to all of the resorts named above. The hotel itself is located on a very secluded powder white sandy beach, the only downside for us is that it is not suitable for swimming in the ocean due to the breakers (we are beach bums) but there is a massive pool for swimming not at all crowded even if the hotel is at full capacity. The hotel is set in 75 acres of landscaped gardens and jungle, the gardens are very well maintained and are stunning. Suites are very comfortable and spotlessly clean with great attention to hygene with all amenities provided. The restaraunts are varied. The La Marche was our favourite for breakfast and lunch, the buffet was exceptional, far superior in quality and also in the selection available to any of the hotels that we have stayed in on the Riviera. There is an Italian, French, Mexican, Indonesian and an Oriental where there is show cooking. We much preferred the French for the evening meals, very elegant surroundings and the cuisine was outstanding in every way (you must try the french onion soup that is to die for). We also used the Italian, although OK sometimes the service was very slow, on one occasion it took over two hours over the meal. The staff throughout the complex are an absolute gem, without exception they are completely professional, efficient, courteous and friendly. We found the entertainment to be very good, we did notice a that few of the English guests commented on the type and standard, but they should bear in mind that the vast majority of clients are American/Canadians and it is geared for their tastes. Also some clients complained about the use of plastic glasses around the pool, beach and the open bars to serve drinks in. This is purely for safety and nothing at all to do with five star classification. Special thanks to the following, can't name them all. The La Marche staff: Betty, Elsie, Ramon and Jeronimo. Big hello to Edgar on the beach . Only downside, as this is a large area if you have mobility problems this can be difficult. There is a buggy service but it is not reliable and sometimse we had a wait of thirty minutes for one to arrive. Also I was not impressed that the guests staying on the priviledge package could make reservations at the restaraunts while guests on the basic package could not, it should be reservations for all or not at all. Very impressed with the Valentin, great value for money, elegant hotel and stunning lobby and public areas fantastic staff great beach second only to Maroma beach. We hope to return!!!

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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4  Thank Essexvacationer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Customer Care at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 29 June 2014

Dear Essexvacationer,

We appreciate your preference in visiting the Valentin Imperial Maya and taking the time to write your positive impressions. It is for guests like you that our resort remains one of the most appreciated hotels in the Riviera Maya.

Thank you for staying with us, and we look forward to be able to welcome you back in your second home in the Mexican Caribbean.

Warm regards from sunny Mexico.

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Reviewed 21 June 2014 via mobile

I chose this resort mainly because it ticked a few boxes for us: adults only, great reviews on TA, and a good deal. After our stay here, I'd say it ticked all the boxes without blowing me away.
A few incidents here and there probably added to my less than ecstatic opinion of the place (ham in an explicitly vegetarian sandwich, a tired looking room, etc).
If you're expecting special attention for a special occasion or honeymoon, that's not likely because an adults only place means that many people are there for the same reasons (at least while we were there)  but it had a lot going for it as well..
Amazing, amazing drinks, excellent dinner staff at at least two of the restaurants,  beautiful property, great vegetarian options, yummy food overall and great pool.
Enjoyed my stay barring the few minor glitches.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank abshim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 24 June 2014

Dear recent VIM Guetss from Mumbai (Bombay), India

Thank you very much for your gracious comments. We are glad that you liked our proprety , vegetarian option, drinks, pools and the amiability of our staff.

We took good note of your observations regarding the sandwich and room and discussed the issues with the various Department Managers in order to take the appropriate measures and avoid situations, such as you described, in the future.

We hope you had a lovely honeymoon and we expect to serve you again in the near future .

Warm regards,

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Reviewed 20 June 2014 via mobile

We have visited several 4 and 5 star resorts over the past 25 years. Never have we been treated better. The staff here should be very proud of themselves. They are without a doubt some of the friendliest people around. We did not have one experience with a bad attitude or a minute of bad service. We will return for another vacation.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank mike a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Customer Care at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 29 June 2014

Dear Mike A,

Thank you very much for your lovely comment about your recent stay at the VIM.

We always appreciate our guests' contribution, suggestions and comments which help us find out about their preferences.

What beautiful words to describe the service our staff members, we are going to share your feedback with all of them.

Thank you again, and hopefully see you again here at The Valentin Imperial Maya.

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Reviewed 20 June 2014

This was our 2nd stay here. 3rd time in Mexico, 1st was further down the coast. Will stay here again. We are now mid-40s, pretty active. This place is the right balance for us. Adults only, near zero college crowd. You meet people from all walks, all ages.
Value: Big bang for the buck. Really..................
Rooms: Clean, well appointed, very comfortable.
Grounds: Clean, well laid out, easy to navigate. Some say large, we say not at all.
Beach: Fantastic does not do it justice.
Entertainment/activities: Plenty to keep one occupied on-site.
Location: not too far from Playa de Carmen or Cancun. Xpu-Ha or Xel-Ha.
Food: Buffets have very broad variety of choices, always fresh. Restaurants, excellent food & service. Excellent drinks throughout.
To many nice things to write, but shining spots are beach, food and accommodations. will most certainly return. Again..

Room Tip: No real need to upgrade unless you desire a swim- up suite, Other than that, Suites are as nice as...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Stanley K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 20 June 2014

Dear returning Guests from Nanticoke, Pensilvania

Thank you very much for choosing Valentin Imperial Maya and for your wishes to return back to our wonderful resort.

Always will be a pleasure to provide our guests with the best service and our goal is that our guests go home with intentions of returning.

We will be happy to see you again so do not hesitate to let us know as soon as you are ready to return.

Regards

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Reviewed 20 June 2014

I've never written a review of a hotel before but the experience we had at the Valentin has inspired me to do so!

We stayed for the first two weeks of June and could not recommend this hotel any more highly. The grounds are beautiful and constantly being maintained, the hotel is spotless, the beach is lovely and has several different areas with some secluded spots and the main pool is massive, offering some quieter areas too.

The food at the Valentin is outstanding. We couldn't choose a restaurant as our favourite and we visited them all at least once. The breakfast buffet is absolutely brilliant, i've never seen anything like it in my life!!

Possibly it's the time of year but we were unable to use the kayaks throughout our stay as he ocean was too rough - you could however have fun in the waves and the beach has a good bathing area where it's easy to enter the sea and the rocks have been cleared (unlike some hotels further along the beach). The beach is actually public but very quiet, and this allows you to walk miles in either direction (helpful in burning off some of the food!) - unlike some other all inclusive properties i've been to.

A big shout out to Angel in the quieter beach bar - he was so friendly and made us all different kinds of cocktails! In fact all the members of staff we came across were really friendly and made us feel extremely welcome.

In terms of getting out and about, we visited Playa del Carmen, Tulum ruins and went snorkelling at Puerto Morelos. The trips are quite expensive but it's really easy to visit places yourself - the hotel will take you to the highway on a trolley and you just raise your hand for the collectivo vans - very safe and cheap to get around (run between playa del carmen and cancun)

We loved out time there, were so sad to leave and will definitely be back!

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Kerry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Customer Care at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 29 June 2014

Dear Kerry S,

Many thanks for sharing your experiences with future travelers, we enjoyed reading your feedback and are happy you had a great vacation at VIM.

The Valentin Imperial maya team looks forward to seeing you in the future.

Wishing you all the best,

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Reviewed 19 June 2014

I traveled to this resort with my wife, her sister and sister's fiancé June 4-11th. It was really a great vacation and a great experience. This was our first time staying at the resort (but doubt it will be the last) and we were all very impressed. I have traveled to this area in Mexico as well as other all inclusive resorts throughout the Caribbean and felt that overall the Valentin was up there as one of the best.

The food at this resort was great, seriously every meal we had a wonderful experience. I loved the breakfast buffet closer to the beach (mainly bc it was closer to our building). The omelets and all the salsa's made for a great and customizable breakfast every morning. For lunch the buffet closer to the lobby was better as far as selection and quality and I loved the little grill station where you could get fajitas or any kind of fish or steak cooked fresh to order. The buffet by the beach was not bad for a quick bite at lunch if you didn't feel like heading all the way up to the main building just less selection. For dinner we tried the Indonesian, Mexican, French and Asian restaurants and really liked all of them (so much so that we ate at the Mexican, French and Asian 2x each). We didn't do the Hibachi because we didn't want to go through the whole process of getting reservations. We ate between 6:30 and 9 and never had to wait for a table. When a certain place did have a long wait we always just went somewhere else which worked out fine. Also, the room service was great for a late night snack to soak up all the drinks.

We aren't big on shows so I cant speak to the quality of those, but did hear good things from others at the resort. We did enjoy the hanging out in the plaza every night and listening to live music and having a few drinks. They have top shelf liquor throughout the resort so you just have to ask at any bar. The bars were great across the board. To name a few nice Margarita bar, relaxing cigar/ hookah bar and even a sports bar to shoot some pool listen to music and watch the NBA finals in. The entertainment in the plaza nightly was great and they also have various vendors that come in so you can pick up souvenirs.

The beach was great. It was big, plenty of chairs and never felt too crowded. If you want one of the thatched umbrella things get there early, but if a beach chair, a spot on the sand and a nice view of the ocean works you are fine showing up at 10 or 11. A lot of the reviews talk about the rocks, which there are, but the swimming section of the beach is rock free and plenty big. There are some waves and current, more some days than others, so if you aren't a strong swimmer something to keep in mind. To me the waves were fun. Also, unlike other places I have been in Riviera Maya there was like minimal to no seaweed here which was nice.

We only made it to the main pool, normally towards the end of the afternoon early evening. No complaints there. The pool is huge, with two swim up bars and plenty of room to spread out. They have some water features and everything was clean and well maintained. Only somewhat negative thing is they close down the bars at 6 which isn't a huge deal but just FYI.

The only somewhat negative thing I would mention is that the rooms were not the greatest. We were on the first floor (we had requested high floor, but hey a request is just that) and our room was super dark all the time because the buildings are surrounded by trees/ jungle. They were also really damp. Now I understand the tropical climate and all, but it was like to the point where the sheets on the bed felt wet with humidity. That said next time I would get a room upgrade and that would probably do it.

Oh and last but certainly not least the staff here is awesome. Everyone is super helpful/ nice, always willing to go above and beyond. Erica was a new employee, but quickly became one of our favorites and made our week really great. There are many more who made our vacation great from the front desk, to bartenders, waitresses, cleaning staff and so on hats off to Valentin staff for great attitudes and hard work.

Would definitely recommend and return to this resort, actually already looking at a possible trip in August/ September. If you are on the fence go for it, you wont be disappointed.

Room Tip: Try to get a higher room, ground floor is really dark. Also, the room upgrades may be worth it.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Mike L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
F T, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Valentin Imperial Maya, responded to this reviewResponded 24 June 2014

Dear Mike from Annapolis, Maryland

We would first of all like to thank you for taking your valuable time to share with us and the rest of the T.A reviewers such an enthusiastic review!

Our staff truly strives to exceed guests' expectations and provide extraordinary service. We are always happy to hear that we have achieved that goal.

We took good note of your observations regarding our Pool bar’s time table and rooms and discussed with the Department Manager in order to take the appropriate measures in the future.

Thank you again, we are looking forward welcoming you back in a near future.

Warm regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Valentin Imperial Maya

Address: Carretera Federal 307 Chetumal Puerto Juarez Km. 311, Playa del Secreto, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa del Secreto
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Playa del Secreto
Price Range: £215 - £837 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Valentin Imperial Maya 4.5*
Number of rooms: 540
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Valentin Imperial Maya is the new definition of paradise. Our 5 star Adults-Only (18+) All-Inclusive Resort is located a short 25 minutes from Cancun International Airport in the Riviera Maya. Set amid lavish gardens on a half-mile-long stretch of white sand beach named Playa Del Secreto (The Secret Beach), this magnificent award-winning resort boasts one of the largest swimming pools in Mexico. The location is ideal as one can easily reach Cancun and the world famous Mayan archaeological sites such as Tulum, Coba, and Chichen Itza, yet be removed enough to enjoy the casually elegant ambience of Valentin Imperial Maya. Escape into a world where your every wish is our command. Come indulge yourself....You deserve it! Valentin Imperial Maya Hotel & Spa is committed to preserve the environment by reducing the consumption of natural resources, promoting among our guests and staff, protection and respect for the environment through good environmental practices. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Valentin Imperial Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Valentin Imperial Riviera Maya

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