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“Nice vacation”

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El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Playa Maroma
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Indianapolis, Indiana
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Nice vacation”
Reviewed 26 February 2012

I stayed at the Dorado Maroma 2/21-26. They made a mistake about our arrival date, but were great and gave us a much better apartment, which was lovely and new. Unfortunately, there was no hot water during our stay. I called the concierge or front desk each day to have it fixed, but it was not addressed until our check out. Our next door neighbors said that they had to run the water for 30 minutes before they had hot water. There were some ants in our room too.
The Italian and Asian restaurants were good. Our servers were fantastic. Room service food was pretty good, except the food was usually cold by the time it reached us. The server forgot items a few times, but took an hour to bring the simple items (like coffee or muffins). I called for additional beverages in our room a few times, but they often never delivered the items.
The beach and pools were good. The beach beds were great. I liked that the resort had a relaxed vibe and the grounds were well maintained.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank WW2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Windsor, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 February 2012

my wife and I attended this resort Febuary of 2012. The resort is clean and well maintained. One of the best sandy beachs in the area. Food was very good. Service was very good. Nice size resort to enjoy.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank m c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wisconsin
Level Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2012

We went to the El Dorado Maroma for a short 3 night stay. From the moment we arrived until the moment we left we loved it. This is one of the 1st vacations we have taken where everything, food, service, room, location, beach and drinks were all 5 star. We picked this resort because we wanted a quiet romantic trip. That is exactly what we got. I knew I had picked the right resort when before we left my husband said to go to the office and book our next vacation. I cannot remember all the names of the staff but would like to tell them thank you for making our trip wonderful. Thank you!

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
11 Thank t0esinthesand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waterloo, Iowa
Level Contributor
85 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2012

My husband and I along with another couple enjoyed a beautiful week at El Dorado Maroma, arriving on February 13, 2012. We used Dream Makers vacation planners who did a great job and were able to secure us a free upgrade upon our arrival to the resort. The El Dorado Maroma staff were immediately attentive to the upgrade request and had us settled into our home for the week quickly.
I agree with the previous reviews stating the fantastic beach, lounging accommodations on the beach, and wonderfully attentive staff. The gardens throughout the grounds are beautiful and well tended. Each interaction with staff was pleasant and respectful and everyone appeared to want to ensure we had an excellent stay.
My husband and I enjoyed the breakfasts and lunches. We made reservations for the "specialty" dinners including Italian, Mexican, and Meet the Butcher. These were a little disappointing in that the food wasn't delicious although none of us left hungry. Overall, we were pleased with the food but found half way through the vacation that there are items that are available that are not on the menu such as ice cream.
Previous reviews mentioned a foul odor on the beach... smelled it a few times but was not at all a problem. Regarding the sales pitch mentioned in other reviews, yes, this was a small part of the interaction with the concierge but when we declined the pitch that was that and we were off to enjoy the rest of our vacation.

Room Tip: We stayed in a Villa, over 1,700 square feet, with a garden view although from the bedroom patio we...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Angela R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, Canada
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2012

Just to provide some context for my review, I have been travelling to tropical destinations for the last 20 years, and during those travels have stayed at numerous resorts in Mexico (all in Riviera Maya), Cuba, Dominican Republic, Aruba, Bali and Thailand. To put it simply: El Dorado Maroma is, without question, the best resort at which I've stayed to date.

We arrived late at night and were promptly shown to our room. We'd booked a Honeymoon Suite and I'd sent a request to the hotel asking for a room whose oceanview was unobstructed by palm trees and that is what we got. We were in the 800 block, which is technically the farthest away from the beach, but we certainly couldn't complain because (a) our room was great - the size of a small apartment!, (b) it was everything we'd requested, and (c) even being in the "farthest" building, we were still no more than a two minute walk from the beach on this compact property. There was a bottle of sparkling wine waiting for us, which was a nice touch.

The next morning we awoke to our beautiful view (I love being able to see the ocean while I'm still in bed!). We went to the lobby and Manuel gave us a tour of the property. We loved the smaller size of the property after staying at one too many resorts that require shuttles or 15+ minute walks to get from point A to point B.

I'll try to address the rest of my review in specific categories.

ROOM:
We had a honeymoon suite and loved it. This is definitely the category we will book when we return. It was huge with a sleeping area, a living area, a large bathroom (including huge tub, indoor and outdoor showers, and a separate w/c) and a great balcony. Bed was very comfortable, particularly once I removed the rubberized mattress cover. Air conditioning kept the room very cool and free of humidity. I was very happy to be provided with slippers and a robe. Head and shoulders above the rooms at most other resorts at which I've stayed. Kept very clean (and we are MAJOR sticklers for cleanliness).

BEACH:
The beach is simply stunning. A good width. Beautiful white sand. Turquoise water so clear that you can see the bottom perfectly. The sandbags didn't bother us at all - we appreciated their function and we still thought the view was beautiful. I'd been worried that the marina might be loud, but I ended up barely even noticing it. Service on the beach is fantastic - Diego attended to all our drink needs with a smile. Manuel set up our towels in our favourite spot (one of the beach beds set just back from the beach) every morning, and came by with little bites around 11:30 every morning (quesadillas, pizza etc.).

POOLS:
We didn't really spend any time at the pools, as we're beach people, but we did camp out on the beach right in front of the 24 pool every day. Both of the pools have swim-up bars. Both always seems to have plenty of loungers/beach beds available. And, for the most part, both seem quiet and don't have the loud activities (pool aerobics! pool volleyball! top 40 music!) that some of the other resorts I've stayed at offer - this is a huge plus for us, as we prefer pure, quiet relaxation. If you prefer more activity, then this may not be the right resort for you.

FOOD:
We are foodies who love to eat and cook great food. Having said that, we also understand that an all-inclusive resort can't be judged by the same yardstick as a Michelin starred restaurant. In comparing apples with apples, I can say very easily that the EDM offers the best food of any all-inclusive I've stayed at.

Like some other reviewers, we did prefer the breakfasts and lunches, but we certainly never had a bad meal at dinner - it might serve them well to simplify their dinner menus a little bit though. We ate at all the restaurants (while we were there they had the usual: Italian, Asian and Mexican, and they also added a Steakhouse at Pepito's due to high occupancy).

Breakfast at Pepito's was great - made to order omelettes, lots of fresh fruit, cappuccino, mimosas, pastries etc. Something for everyone. We loved lunch at both Pepito's and Sabores. We both particularly enjoyed all the fresh fish they served at Pepito's (the fish skewers were fantastic!), as well as the fajitas and pizza at Sabores.

All our dinners were good. I had beef tenderloin on three different occasions (Italian, Steakhouse, and Mexican theme night at Sabores) and all three times it was cooked to a perfect medium rare and very tender. We really enjoyed the Asian restaurant, as the food there is a little simpler. The seafood appetizer at the Italian restaurant was delicious. Loved the garlic soup at the Steakhouse.

We ordered twice from room service: one late-night dessert (brownie and ice cream - YUM!), and breakfast on our last day. Both times our food came very quickly (they tell you when you place your order that it will arrive in 30 minutes or less) and was very good.

If there was ever anything you wanted that wasn't on the menu (this goes for both room service and the restaurants), all you needed to do was ask!

DRINKS:
All the drinks we had (and I feel like I tried them all!) were delicious. I appreciated that the banana daquiris I so enjoyed were made with fresh bananas. Top-shelf liquor available (we aren't big drinkers, so weren't too concerned about brand names, so we probably aren't the best people to ask about this). Bartenders all had an extensive repertoire and would make anything you liked. Loved the tequila tasting on Saturday at 24 bar!

GROUNDS:
The grounds are beautifully maintained and have a very romantic, tropical feel with lots of thatched roofs, palm trees and curtains billowing in the breeze. There were always ample loungers and beach beds. I just loved walking around the resort, as - both day and night - it all looked so pretty, romantic and luxurious.

STAFF:
As countless other reviews have stated, the staff are what make this resort really stand out. No request was ever too big and everyone was SO friendly and obliging. From the servers in the restaurants, to the beach servers, housekeepers and room service delivery, as well as the bell boys and reception staff, we never encountered a single frown or bad attitude. I don't know what kind of training program Karisma has in place, but it must be comprehensive as the customer service here is truly excellent. A couple exceptional staff members: Diego (beach server), Jonas (room service delivery), Jeremias (server at Pepito's), Manuel (he seems to be everywhere! What a friendly, well-spoken guy - he was our first real contact at the resort, as he showed us around the property, and he should be everyone's first contact, as he gives such a great, friendly and professional first impression. He went out of his way to help us throughout our stay, from our arrival up until mere seconds before our departure).

A word on tipping: we tipped for all our meals and drinks (sometimes every other round) and, while we know our tips were most certainly appreciated, we never saw any discrepancy in service between those who did and did not tip. We understand this is a personal decision but, rest assured, you will receive the same great service no matter what choice you make on this matter.

Areas for improvement: would prefer automated safes with keypads rather than having to carry a key around at all times. Did not appreciate the company that's allowed on the property with wild animals (they offer the guests photos with the animals) - animal exploitation is never acceptable and while Karisma has implemented many eco-friendly intiatives, it would behoove them to no longer allow such companies onto their properties.

Would we return? In a heartbeat.

Highly recommended.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
22 Thank hergreenapples
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
266 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2012

Just returned from the Karisma El Dorado Maroma with my wife for a romantic Valentines week holiday. The hotel is adults only and is approximately a half hour south of the airport by car. The grounds, pools and beach are well maintained and exceptionally clean. We stayed in one of the MI Hotelito Beachfront suites. My understanding is these suites are the original structures and were recently renovated in the last year or two. Our room was tastefully furnished, the back patio opened next to Bar 24 with its pool, then a few steps to the beach. There is several other room choices with plunge pools or villas directly on the beach or with garden views these rooms are in buildings added to the resort over the last few years. The hotel staff is very professional, quick to say hello and are eager to please yet are not over bearing. The hotel assigns a personal concierge to you a nice touch. They will arrange spa treatments, reserve you a table for the themed dinning evenings and can help you with anything else. They also see if you are interested in joining the hotels vacation club, our concierge was very professional about this and was not pushy which I appreciated.

The food was very good. I would rate breakfast and lunch best dinner second. There are four restaurants Kiyoko (dinner only) it is Asian inspired this was our favorite. Mio (dinner only) serves Italian, Sabores serves Mexican/Caribbean and Papitos offered pretty much anything else. Ask for the Green juice at breakfast it is really good! The only food criticism I offer is the wine selection. The house wines were not that good. The resort did offer other wines but it was extra, not cheap, and those selections were not that great. We were told by one of the waiters that management was changing the wine selection. That said we switched to tequila, ole!

I would recommend some filed trips off of the resort. See Luis the Lomas Travel service representative who has an office just off the main reception area he was excelente. Trips are at an extra cost and can be charged to your room. We enjoyed the Camel Safari Brandon and Bernard are great tour guides. This took about 3hours was near by and fun. We also visited Tulum, a Mayan Village, Coba and snorkeling with turtles. This was an all day trip that was about 11 hours. The hotel offers free shuttle service into Playa Del Carmen on Wednesday and one other day, don’t remember, it would be nice if they offered this more frequently. The hotel had an entertainment program with many activities but I noticed no one participating. We seemed to have a mature crowd the week we stayed who preferred to lounge, and take it easy. Next to the resort, but not part of it, is a marina that offers boat tours, parasailing, jet ski’s etc…

A note about the rotten smell mentioned by other reviews. I did notice it on occasion but it was not overbearing, consistent or a nuisance. Not sure if this has anything to do with the smell but the resort is surrounded by a mangrove swamp. We had no issues with mosquitoes.

Overall this was a beautiful and quite resort that provided excellent service, good food and a very nice beach. We were very satisfied and highly recommend it to anyone!

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank pmny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2012

This was a fantastic resort that gave everything it promised - a romantic, relaxing setting with good food and a beautiful location that was perfect for a much needed vacation! The food was good, as was the service. I loved the small size of the resort - it never felt crowded, you could find quiet when you wanted it and there was a lot of privacy. My only complaint was that the people staying above our room left their jacuzzi tub running and fell asleep (I'm assuming they were drunk), resulting in a flood. We were awoken at 12:30 a.m. with water dripping from the ceiling onto our pillows and my boyfriend's head, and discovered it was also flowing down the walls. The staff arrived within a 10 minutes of our call and after some assessment gave us a different room to sleep in for the night because our bed was directly under the leak. Unfortunately, the AC in the new room wasn't working, and between that and the commotion of having people come in to photograph the damage and us switching rooms in the middle of the night, neither of us really slept that night. Other than a brief apology during the move, we didn't receive much of an apology for the inconvenience - I thought more could have been done to make it right, given that we lost a night of sleep (and sleep is important when you're on vacation!) and a night in our room as a result of this. We aren't the types to complain or demand extras, but at least an apology the next morning from the management would have been in order. Aside from this problem with customer service, I was impressed with the place, but the incident did lower my overall impression.

Room Tip: We booked the infinity pool room but were upgraded when we arrived to the swim up, and LOVED it. We...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BMcBee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma

Property: El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma
Address: Carretera Federal Cancun-Tulum Km 55.3, Playa Maroma, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly El Dorado Spa Resorts, by Karisma)
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Maroma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Green Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Spa Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Romantic Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Luxury Hotel in Playa Maroma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma 4.5*
Number of rooms: 99
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on one of Travel Channels Top Ten Beaches in the World, El Dorado Maroma is an upscale, exclusive Caribbean resort for romantic couples and active vacationers alike. Intimate and beachfront. Rustic and luxurious at the same time. the hotel provides outstanding services and gourmet cuisine. Receive personalized butler and concierge service, arrive with style with a champagne check in. It is rustic, because it is not pretentious and was built using traditional materials and with the philosophy of embracing the bounty of the nature and the local environment. It lies directly on the beach of Maroma, considered to be one of the best beaches in the world by independent reviewers, including the Discovery Channel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Dorado Maroma, a Beachfront Resort, By Karisma Hotel Playa Del Carmen
El Dorado Maroma Hotel
El Dorado Maroma Resort

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