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“Beautiful resort, not for everyone, some service hiccups but very attentive” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma

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El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Playa Maroma
Certificate of Excellence
Claymont, Delaware
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Beautiful resort, not for everyone, some service hiccups but very attentive”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 May 2014

This was the second resort my husband and I stayed at for our wedding and honeymoon, and it was definitely a very different experience than the first place we stayed. There was good and bad, and I'm going to try to give an overview of both.

First, the good.

The beach on this property is just amazing. It's been sandbagged so the beach is a few feet deep with fish swimming, clean bottom, clear water. You can swim beyond the sandbags and it's deeper but still protected by a reef. The water is warm, warmer than the pools. There are plenty of seats and a few beach beds/cabanas which are really nice, but get there early if you want one. The kayaks were a lot of fun, and included.

It's steps away from Adventures Maroma which offers snorkeling, diving, speedboats, ATVs, parasailing, waverunners, horseback rides, camel rides, swimming with dolphins-- all of the things you usually have to take a bus or taxi to do. If you're up for booking a full week of activities, there's a place at the resort to do just that. None of this is included in your stay, but the prices are comparable to what you'd pay anywhere else and you don't have to worry about transportation. Most of these tours include a snack and drinks, which is nice.

The property itself is pretty, well-maintained, and walkable all day and night. They've put a lot into landscaping and maintaining the grounds.

The suites are beautiful, roomy, and clean. We stayed in an infinity pool suite on the 3rd floor, which had the most comfortable bed I've ever slept in. The linens are soft and comfortable, and you can choose your pillow type if you want to. The bathrooms have an indoor and outdoor shower, dual sinks, a large jacuzzi tub, and a toilet with a door. We had a large living area with 2 sofas that we didn't use much, but it would be nice for people traveling in groups to visit in each others' rooms.

There are 2 pools for general use, both have bars, and both have plenty of seating. The main pool has some beach cabanas that you don't have to reserve.

The food was good, as were the drinks. Service at breakfast and lunch was good.

This is a very small resort, so expect to see a lot of the same people (guests and staff alike). We'd like to personally thank Gustavo for an excellent meal and Noemi, our personal concierge, for addressing all of our needs and concerns professionally and kindly. We had a lovely breakfast on our last day and a romantic bed and bath drawn for us on our last night to make our honeymoon memorable, all thanks to Noemi and the personal concierge staff.

Now, the not so good.

This was definitely not the right fit for my husband and me. We are relatively young, active, and like to spend a lot of time busy when we're traveling. This resort is really best for couples and groups who want to relax, sit at the pool, swim in the ocean, and sunbathe. The other alternative is to book excursions or tours the entire time you're there, but that can get pricey. Still, the only thing in the way of things to do at night is Rick's bar, which didn't seem all that exciting. As a couple, we really enjoyed being in the heart of Playa del Carmen the week before where we could shop, sightsee, and walk around any time of the day or night. In contrast, this resort is a mile or two from the road between Playa and Cancun.

There were some younger couples like us there, but most of the guests were in their 50s or older. This resort really seems to cater to middle class, middle aged, middle Americans. This isn't a bad thing for everyone, obviously, but it wasn't for us. We're by no means partiers or heavy drinkers, but El Dorado Maroma was a little too low key for us despite that.

Since the resort is so small, the food choices are limited, and though it was very good we still got a little tired of it after a few days. There are only 3 restaurants for dinner, and two for lunch. The breakfast menu didn't change all week, and the lunch buffet changed its entree special daily, but we really would have liked a little variety. The food is very good, however, so no complaints on quality. As well, food isn't available all the time-- they do operate on fixed hours. Room service is always available, but they didn't always answer the phone and it took over an hour for us to get two cheeseburgers.

All of the dinner restaurants have fixed menus, and there are only 4-6 entrees for each one. While the food is very good, I think the resort could really benefit from having another dinner restaurant, possibly a more casual buffet. For dinner, every restaurant requires men to wear collared shirts and women to wear nicer business casual type clothing.

While the beach cabana beds are nice, a few more would be great. We never got one because they seemed to get taken early in the morning and used all day. They also didn't get cleaned up after people left in the evening until after sunset.

We had service issues throughout our time at the resort. Some other couples didn't experience this at all, but we like to eat later, around 7:30pm or later. We waited 25-45 minutes every night just to get seated at a table. We had reservations for a dinner on the beach and waited 30 minutes past our reservation to get seated. Our salad course took another 20 minutes to get served despite being ordered days before. Service at dinner was slow. Portions are small, so we spent a lot of time sitting at dinner-- 2-3 hours a night including the wait for a table. This may not have been an issue for everyone, but when we're not with friends, we don't want to spent that long at a meal. Some people really enjoy lingering over a long, relaxing meal, but again, it wasn't for us.

Towels always seemed to be out at the pools and the beach. We went out to the pool and beach later, so I imagine they just didn't get restocked later in the day. There are towels in the main lobby, which we didn't realize until our last day there.

There are no elevators in this resort, which didn't bother us as much as I feared it would. The infinity pool suites would have a gorgeous ocean view if not for the palm trees planted directly in front. The second and third floors have no view of the ocean. I would imagine the fourth floor might be high enough, but we didn't see a fourth floor room.

Like most of the resorts in Mexico, Karisma has a loyalty/membership program. We attended the presentation which wasn't bad-- much more low key than Vegas timeshares-- and got a candlelight dinner in return. Not a bad trade, IMO. We also got to see some of the presidential suites on the property which are pretty amazing. Members do seem to get a lot of perks, and we definitely saw more of the difference with that at this resort than we did at the other one. That's good for members, maybe not for the rest of us.

Right now there is a lot of construction going on, and the 700- and 800- buildings are right next to it. There was a lot of noise and banging from early in the morning on all week. If you're a late sleeper, go for another building.

I think El Dorado Maroma is pricey for what it offers, however, you're always going to spend more at a smaller property.

Regardless, I'm still giving El Dorado Maroma five stars because I think, on the whole, the issues we had with the property came down to personal preference and some growing pains that the resort is happy to address when you tell them about it.

Room Tip: Try to get a fourth floor room in the buildings close to the ocean for a view, or upgrade to the pre...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
11 Thank sbandrow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Nashville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 May 2014

El Dorado is a very small resort and very private. The food, service, and staff were great. The beach was pretty but didn't care for the rock barricades in the water. I also didn't like the fact that you are far from everything if you wanted to leave the resort. Overall it is a nice resort if you want to be away from people and want quietness. We've found resorts in Playacar that is more our style, less cost, and better beaches. Most likely wouldn't return to this resort.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cobolt1998
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ignacio l, General Manager at El Dorado Maroma, by Karisma, responded to this review, 18 May 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you very much for having chosen EDM for your past vacation.

I am glad to know that you enjoyed your time with us.

We hope to have the oportunity to host you again and I am sorry if there was something you did not like.

Sincerely,


Ignacio Lazaro
General Manager
gm@eldoradomaroma.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wallingford, Connecticut
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 May 2014 via mobile

We had a wonderful time. We had a infinity suite room. Very nice . People working there were very friendly. We really enjoyed talking with Brisa , hostess a Pepino's as well as Javier who waited on us for breakfast there almost every morning . Carlos our concierge was very helpful .Ivette the manager at pepinos was also great . We will be back. Only thing was wish there were a few more restaurants to chose from. The McNallys

Stayed April 2014, travelled solo
Helpful?
1 Thank Dmcnall65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 May 2014

We have been back 2 weeks and already missing it. We spent April 25-May 2th there. I don't even know where to begin with this review! We are couple who travel each year andhavetried several all-inclusive resort. Hands down, this is the BEST resort we have visited yet!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Guillaume D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lafayette, Louisiana
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 May 2014

We have been back 1 week and already missing it.....spent April 28-May 5th there.

I don't even know where to begin with this review!!!! We were a group of 8....4 couples who travel each year to different resorts....hands down we all agreed that this is the BEST resort we have visited yet!!!!

FROM THE BEGINNING:
4 weeks prior to our departure I had to have an unexpected knee surgery. We had requested a 4th floor infinity suite and there being no elevators I was considering canceling since my doctor said absolutely NO stairs. I contacted Denisse Vega, GM, and she was extremely understanding and accommodating and we were upgraded to a swim up room which was PERFECT!!!! When we go back we will definitely request this same room (401)....it was a little further away from main pool/swim-up bar but by no means far...just quieter.....the view was wonderful and I loved sitting out in the mornings looking out, drinking coffee, watching people going to breakfast, waving, smiling...LOVED IT!!!!! Thank you so much Denisse!!!!!!!!!!!

As some reviews have said the main entrance may not knock your socks off but with the smiles and friendly staff when you enter the lobby who needs all the glamour!!!! Ana Lily greeted us with such a huge smile and HUG....felt as though she was a very close relative that I had not seen in a long time....what a wonderful lady!!!! Once registered, which took only minutes, we were taken on a short tour of the property, shown where our rooms were and then had a deliciously wonderful lunch and drinks.....while being waited on hand and foot...again with the friendliest staff ever!!!!!!!!! All 4 couples were very pleased with our rooms....we had swim up, 2 had infinity pool suites and 1 the Mi Hotelito suite.....all agreed the beds were so comfortable!!!!! Our suite was very clean when we arrived and stayed that way our entire visit, we always had plenty of towels, wash cloths and amenities...never had to ask for anything....frig always had water, sodas and beer!

The beach and waters are absolutely gorgeous!!!!!!!!!! Each day the waters seemed to get more gorgeous if that was possible!!!!!!

We also ALL agreed that the food was fantastic!!!!!!! We ate in the 3 restaurants and really enjoyed the food, the morning and lunch buffets were wonderful and room service was great!!!! Now, keep in mind that we are from South Louisiana where we have some of the best food and we are all darn good Cajun cooks......so for us to say the food is good....it is GREAT!!!!! Sure, it is different from what we have here but quiet delicious! If you can't find something that you enjoy then all I can say is that you should stay home! Jonathan, the head chef was always around checking on guests making sure they were enjoying the food or if not, meeting with them to prepare something special. I visited with him for a while and he really is a very interesting young man and wants to please everyone....which unfortunately not all people "want" to be pleased!

I could not participate in most of the activities but that did not stop the rest of the group from playing water volleyball each afternoon, doing water aerobics, going upstairs to Rick's Bar for night time entertainment. We did really enjoy the little cooking classes with funny Salvador!!!!! Salvador & Yudith (Judith) were so much fun and added "youth" to our group (61-66 years old)!!!! They were always talking, smiling, dancing, cutting up with us....loved seeing them each day!!!!!

Oh! And Gustavo with the Tequila tasting......I don't even drink tequila and loved every drop...to the point that I bought a bottle of Tequila Liquor, Agavero.....yummy!!!! Gustavo was very entertaining!!! One of our group asked him how to say 1:50pm in Spanish and he was quick to say 10 to 2!!!!! We all rolled over laughing and from then on he was known as 10 to 2!!!!!!!

As previously stated we were a group of 8 and we were not sure that we could be seated all together each night but our friend, Genora, personally saw that we were always seated together. He is so kind, accommodating and we loved his funny and comical personality!!!!

We had great waiters of which these 4 really stood out for us Jonas, Jerimas, Eroin and Francisco. They always knew exactly what we wanted....almost before we did!!!! Jonas went beyond call of duty when my husband and another guy with us asked for Miller Lite and Budweiser beer, which they do not serve on resort, Jonas on his own time bought 2 6 packs of each and delivered to them......now that is service!!!!!!!!!

Gabby, Pedro and Estella always greeted us on the beach with a huge smile and did their best to keep the 8 of us "hydrated":-))

Can't forget the cute beautiful smiling little hostesses....Ivette & Liz!!!!!

Emeilo at the small pool bar was a hoot!!!! Such a great bartender and comedian!!!!! One night when I didn't know what I wanted to drink he said he would make me a special drink...and he did! When I asked what it was he said it was "The Queen drink for the Queen".....tip, tip, tip for my Emelio:-) I feel terrible that we cannot remember the bartender at the main pool swim up bar (maybe Alexander?) but he was wonderful!!!!!! Made lots of mud-slides, long island ice teas and even let my husband tell him how to make our Bloody Mary's the way we liked them....after that each time he went to get our Bloody Mary's he knew exactly how we liked them and how much Tabasco...PERFECTO!!!!

Also want to recognize Daniel from the spa! My husband had shoulder problems and he gave him a beach massage and then 50 minutes in the spa. My husband felt so much better after and said that Daniel conducted the session as a beautiful ritual...he was very impressed with him!

I know I have written a book and I know that there are deserving people whom I may have left out but please know that the entire staff at this resort are kind, friendly and willing to go out of their way to make sure your stay is everything you dreamed it would be.

We did go to the Exotic Club meeting but have not yet joined....we are still considering it depending on a couple of future decisions. The person we met with, Guy, did a great presentation keeping it short and to the point which was very much appreciated.

Lastly, we met some of the greatest guests from Finland, UK, Las Vegas, Boston, Montreal and Texas. There are 2 Texas couples that there is no doubt we will all meet up again!!!!

So if you are looking for a small, quiet yet not boring, friendly home away from home then do not hesitate booking here!

Did not mean to write a book but after reading some negative reviews before we went I just wanted to express our total positive experience. If you have any questions I would be more than happy to answer!

Room Tip: We loved our swim up room 401!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Cajun_lady_30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
30 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 May 2014

My wife and I stayed here in October 2010 for our Honeymoon and let me tell you it was the experience of a lifetime! The best service the best food and the atmosphere was simply amazing. This is a very small resort, so all the staff knew us by name and always made an effort to greet us every morning with smiles. The wait staff at this resort are some of the friendliest people we have ever met. The one waiter practically came out into the water to give us our drinks! After day 2 the waiter already knew what drinks we liked and from then we never had to ask, he remembered!
I cannot say anything bad about this resort. The food was amazing, we had a lobster dinner by the beach and if I can remember correctly we had 5 courses all with lobster. We could not finish the champagne so the waiter carried the basket up 3 flights of stairs to our room!!
We are very excited to go back to this resort!

Room Tip: Get a room that is east or west facing because the pool on the balcony is not heated
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank pscollard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nottingham, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 May 2014

just spent 2 fabulos weeks at this hotel and found it a very relaxing and enjoyable staythe staff were the some of the most accomadating I have come across from the executive chef Johnathan,genarro and gustavo the head waiters ricado and oscar who made sure our meals were served well and really went out of there way to to provide meals for 2 teens with a typical teens adverse re-action to greens and other types of veg, the meal for my birthday was a quite exellent prepared especially cooked surprise and the adornement and decoration of the bedroom by omar and the room staff avery nice touch,I cannot finish without praiseing Lonara the massuse who on my intial deep tissue massage beat me to pulp but also delivered a relaxing massage that nearly had me snoring with my subsquent 2nd visit. the only drawback was the lack of entertianment for families with teens who could not use the facilities of the adult side and having to intially ask for the full gourtmey menu which wasn,t served in the generations resturant but was forthcoming after a word with Johnathan.I would wholeheartedly recomend this hotel to anyone who wants peace and quiet and not interested in rowdy nights the night life was good for what it provided.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank brian g
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 Spa Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Romantic Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Luxury Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Top resorts 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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