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“Miss it already...” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Excellence Playa Mujeres

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Excellence Playa Mujeres
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Prolongacion Bonampak, S/N, Punta Sam | Lote Terrenos 001 MZ. 001 Sm. 003, Zona Continental, Playa Mujeres 77400, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Playa Mujeres
Central MA
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Miss it already...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014 via mobile

Excellence Playa Mujeres - Review

Finally getting around to writing my review for our stay at EPM February 15-22.  Overall I will emphatically state that our visit was beyond our expectations and we will be most assuredly returning soon. I would like to preface that we had stayed at EPC in April 2013 (see my review on TA) and had a nice stay but because of one bad experience we were reluctant to go back to that resort. Instead we opted to give Excellence another chance and switched our destination to Playa Mujeres. I have to say that hands down, there was no comparison. From the second we stepped out of our shuttle the service was five star and never did we feel we did not get our money's worth. So here is my lengthy opinion on our stay...

Airport and Shuttle Service - We used Dream Days Tours and booked the Cadilac Escalade. We were met at the airport promptly despite our flight arriving a half hour early. We never check our luggage and getting through customs was a breeze. I must note, however that you need to be prepared that they may go through your luggage as they did ours. Despite the "search" however, from the moment we landed to our airport exit we spent no more than half an hour at the terminal. That experience alone trumped what it was like in Punta Cana! In PC we were delayed for more than two hours. (Herded into the terminal like cattle and inched along from one line to the next until we were finally free to enter the country. )

Our shuttle from Dream Days was driven by Harry who was extremely personable and had a lot of interesting tidbits about the area as we drove north to EPM. One of the perks of DD is that they include Coronas in the trip with the option of buying additional ones for $1 each. Nice start to our vacation!

Upon arriving at EPM we were escorted to the Excellence Club so we could check in. Since we arrived early (12:30) our room was not ready so we hung on the beach until we could get into our room at 3:00. We had reserved a rooftop suite in building 8 (room 8454). Our room had breathtaking views of the ocean and the main pool. It was also one of the higher rooms so we had absolute privacy throughout our stay. 

Concierge - first and foremost, I need to give a shout out to Dala in the EC. Never have I encountered an individual who is solely driven to make your stay as comfortable as possible. No request was not taken seriously and her attention to detail was unprecedented. She is a class act and we look forward to seeing her again when we return. Also in the EC I would be remiss to not publicly praise Carolina. While sitting on the beach she made a point of introducing herself to us, greeting us by name as if we had known each other for years. She was anxious to help with our dinner plans and had great recommendations for us. I could not get over how courteous all the staff were and how they went the extra mile to get to know us, calling us by name and always attentive to our needs. Wow!! This was something that I did not witness at EPC and it was truly refreshing.

I don't want to get into the ins and outs of the resort because that has been done to death on this site. I will however comment about some of the more subtle (or not so subtle) things that we noticed, that may not have been discussed in detail before.

To go EC or not?? I am from the camp that paying the extra for EC privileges is money well spent. Any issues are dealt with immediately and you have a level of comfort that is beyond what I can describe in words. In the room we were given topshelf alcohol including Don Julio reposado tequila and Absolute vodka. The view from our room was breathtaking and was noise free in the hallway. Whether we were on the beach or at the EC pool we were treated as royalty. Concierge was so efficient in making up our sunbeds and changing our towels if they needed changing while we were swimming or going for a walk. Waiter service began promptly at 9:00 am and was never lacking. When we stayed at EPC we also did the EC upgrade but never saw this level of service at that site. At EPC the cabanas were always full of sand and beds were not made up for you unless you sepecifically asked. Not that this was a big deal at the time, but now that We have had the royal treatment at EPM we have gotten to appreciate it more. In EPM, the EC lounge was also a nice addition to our stay. Typically we would stop in after a day at the beach or pool to have a drink and some refreshments. As soon as we entered we were greeted by name and asked how our day has been. Very nice...

The Beach - so much has been written about the seaweed and it's negative impact on the shoreline. I just didn't see it. Yes, there is some seaweed, but it's a beach! We come from the northeast so seaweed is something we are used to, but the seaweed here was minimal at best and the resort was incredible diligent in cleaning it up each morning. Of course you cannot compare it to Playa Norte on Isla Mujeres, but in my opinion the seaweed was a non-issue. 

Our favorite part of our day was mornings on the beach. Typically I got up just before sunrise to view the spectacular scenery. Sunrise was about 6:15 each morning and was well worth getting up for. I was able to secure a sunbed for us and spend the quietest part of the day relaxing to a good book on my Kindle. I would like to note that during our stay we never saw any real abuse of palapa "ownership". The sunbeds were always reserved early, but people typically occupied them from the start. Even at the height of the day there were always great spots under palapas still available. Granted, our stay was mainly on the EC side of the beach, but what I did view of the non-EC side appeared to be much of the same. This applied to the pools as well. I guess my only two cents to that is, if you want a primo beach/ pool spot, get up early and secure one. Don't complain if you sleep until midday and find that your desired location is not available. Anyway as I said, just my two cents...

Trip to Isla Mujeres... 
Early in the week we decided to take an excursion to Isla Mujeres. We got up early and had the front desk call a cab for us. Round trip cab fare was ($140 pesos or about $25 USD) the cab ride was a bit longer than I expected, roughly close to half an hour. The other issue is that the cab was very uncomfortable for my husband who is 6'6". He had to sit sideways in the backseat in order to fit his legs in. We took the Ultramar ferry from Puerto Juárez. The ferry was clean and efficient and priced RT at $140 pesos or about $12 USD per person. We arrived on the island at about 10:00 am and easily found a nice spot on Playa Norte where we rented two chairs and an umbrella for about $300 pesos or $25 USD. The vendor that was renting the chairs also gave us drinks at a 2 for one price which was a nice perk. We left the beach about 2:00 and went to have a late lunch and do some shopping. When we were all done we walked back to the Ultramar ferry dock and waited in a very long line to get back on board. At this point we were absolutely exhausted and questioned whether it might have been an easier day if we just booked the excursion directly from the hotel. We were just not looking forward to another cramped cab ride back to the resort. I do have to note, however, that Playa Norte is absolutely stunning and definitely worthy of at least one day to visit.

Comparison to Beloved - I am not going to pretend that I have any real insight to the Beloved Resort next door but in my uneducated opinion I felt that at least aesthetically EPC was superior. I walked around the TBH on our last morning (around 7:00 am) and was genuinely shocked at how unkempt it was. There were still many empty drink glasses strewn about the resort and a number of abandoned towels left from the previous night. After walking throughout the resort I only viewed two hotel workers getting the resort ready for the day. This was a major contrast to EPC where you could not go ten feet without bumping into someone who was working hard on preparing the resort for the day. Employees were in the pool cleaning it, raking the beach, rolling towels, sweeping off sunbeds, watering gardens... The list goes on...

Overall our experience was marvelous and we will most certainly be returning. Our week was over much too soon and we cannot wait until we are able to come back "home".

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Excellence_Group, Community Manager at Excellence Playa Mujeres, responded to this review, April 3, 2014
Thank you very much for taking the time of sharing your experience with us.

We are more than pleased to hear that your experience with us was nothing short of extraordinary. We will ensure that your amiable comments reach the eyes and ears of all our staff at Excellence Playa Mujeres. It means so much more when it comes from the opinion of our valued guests.

We look forward to having the opportunity to receive you on your next Caribbean holiday and to make your stay with us a pleasant one.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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English first
Nashville, Tennessee
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

Upon arrival we were greeted with a smile and champagne. The service was outstanding and we were never without a fresh beverage or snack! We would highly recommend the Italian and Spice restaurants! My husband really love the lobster house and Basmati but I am not a big Indian food person and I could take or leave seafood. We did find that if you tip the employees that walk around the pool and take your drink order a larger amount up front, they will pay extra attention to you throughout the week. We would highly recommend the couples massage at the spa. It was an 80 minute massage with about an hour of hydro therapy prior to the massage. It is totally worth the money!!! We also went to a market right outside of Cancun one day. We had the resort call a taxi and he took us right to it. It was about a twenty minute ride. It was a neat experience but be prepared to be haggled and begged. If you are up for it, I say do it!! Anyway, you can't go wrong with Excellence. If you can't enjoy a vacation here, I don't think you can enjoy one anywhere! :)

Room Tip: Do not pay more for an ocean view or swim up room because we were only in our rooms to sleep and it...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Syracuse, New York
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

What is there to possibly say that others haven't. We all can't be wrong. I have delayed in writing this because I am not sure what else I could add. This was our fifth stay at an Excellence property. Our first at this location. Now we have tried them all. We found EPM to be a little more modern and "hip" but none the less enjoyable. I would not turn down a chance to visit any of them. I keep waiting for Jamica.

The most important reason we return in the customer service and attention to detail. I have never experienced any company with such service. ANY reasonable request is granted. I have never met so many people that try so hard to please. Every one greets you with a smile. Being larger and more heavily booked then EPC and ERC, when we stayed, there was a little less personal interaction with lead staff and managers than we were used to. We did seem to run into Manager Jesus Guillen Hernandez frequently. He could not have been nicer or more helpful. Always a smile on his face and a warm greeting. Nicest person.

We arrived before our room was ready but went to the buffet and enjoyed a leisurely lunch after a long day of travel. Took a short walk around the grounds that are so well cared for. Gardens are wonderful. Our room was ready promptly. Stayed in room 8302. I enjoyed building 8 as it was easily accessible, close to all the main areas but not overly noicey. We were never disturbed with any form of noise.

We reserve a Pool/Spa view room as we do not plan on spending alot of time in our room. The room was wonderful and couldn't not have been taken care of better. Mini bar always stocked. Housekeeping was done without disturbance and we had no issues what so ever. The towel art was a welcome surprise when we would return. My favorite was the elephant drinking out of the champagne bucket!! Turn down service is a welcome touch at the end of the day.

Cesar at the Martini Bar always welcomed us with a smile and "sit right down". He was plesant and entertaining and kept us coming back. Missed him on his day off.

We ate around 7pm every night so we could attend the shows. They were enjoyable and a nice touch to end the evening. The fire show was very enjoyable. We had not seen this before and were impressed. Music after the shows was very relaxing.

The pools were very clean. Tried out most of them. As busy as the resort was we never had a problem finding a choice seat or float. The lazy river was terrific and scenic. We also stayed and swam at the beach several times. It's an ocean. There is going to be seaweed. It was no concern or problem for us. The resort maintains the area nicely. We also enjoyed the lunches and cooking demonstrations at the beach daily. Pizza was also very good to nibble on poolside but could be a distance if you picked one of the farther pools.

Food was very good. Is it five star famous chef cuisine? No, but it is not supposed to be. There is no reason why you can't find numerous selections to enjoy. If you don't like one thing, try another or another restaurant. The resort does not mind and wants you to be happy. We really enjoy the no reservations system. Eat when you want, not when you are told to. We celebrated our anniversary at the French restaurant. Very good meal and dessert was customized as an added touch.

Only complaint we did have was with the Manager/Supervisor at the Grill one night. There was a very loud group of six middle aged adults (?) at dinner. Clearly had been drinking to much all day. They were creating a scene. Spouses were cursing and fighting and one man walked out. The manager did nothing to quiet them down or respond to the situation. The servers were apologizing many times. It did not do much for the atmosphere. Later that night security and many staff were seen all over the resort looking for the man. This is the first time in five visits I have ever seen this. They appeared to be short servers this night also and they were working very hard while the Manager appeared to stand around watching this.
EPC is located about 1/2 hour from the airport. Easy ride. As you go by other resorts you will be very glad you picked Excellence.

We can't say enough about how much we enjoy Excellence properties. We are booked again to go back this fall. Have recommended them to many people. We enjoy the Adult only atmosphere. We enjoy meeting people in the pools, bars and around the grounds while there. It is nice to be able to say Hi to someone as you pass them around the resort. If you wish to stay to yourselves, that works too. As they promote, you can be as busy or not as you wish to be.

One last suggestion. While tips are included in the package price, please take a few extra dollars and tip the staff that take such good care of you. If you can afford to take this trip you can afford to give them a little thank you. It only requires a couple dollars here and there and they are very appreciative. They work hard to make your stay enjoyable.

What are you waiting for?? Book with Excellence now.

Room Tip: We liked building 8. Centrally located.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

We have visited several all-inclusive resorts throughout the Caribbean and Mexico and this Excellence was the best! The service was top notch. The staff were friendly and wanted to make sure your needs were exceeded. Julianna who served drinks around the main pool was so friendly! We loved the fact that you don't have to make reservations for the restaurants and could eat at any of them without restrictions. We didn't get to try them all in part because the Indian restaurant was so good we went back twice! Be careful to understand that while this is a five star resort, and the food is the best we have experienced for an all-inclusive, the food isn't on par with a five star restaurant that you would experience in a major city. However the food is VERY good. The pool and grounds were the best maintained of any resort we have stayed at. Many resorts we have visited the maintenance often left things slightly "undone", not the case here! Workout facility equipment was well maintained which is normally not the case. The rooms were beautiful and the shower was awesome! The lounge bed on our deck worked perfect on the one day it rained. We hung out there and read, played cards and thoroughly enjoyed our "out-of-the-sun" day!

THINGS YOU MAY LIKE TO KNOW - there is a daily newsletter given to each room. In it there was a policy statement everyday saying you could not reserve lounge chairs. This "policy statement" is NOT true. While we could always find a chair often farther away, people began "reserving" chairs around the pool as early at 6 AM. I watched one set of chairs that got reserved at 6 AM and the people never appeared until later in the afternoon. I think if they are going to make this policy statement they should stick to it! Some friends of ours stayed here and said they watched staff remove items from chairs when people were found to not be using them. This NEVER happened. We were annoyed because we were really looking forward to not having to get up at dawn's twilight to make sure we were able to get a chair near the activities of the pool!

While the room is very nice, the mattresses were awful. They were so hard that we tossed and turned every night. Be prepared to get your sleep in the lounge chairs around the pool or on the beach.

We were also told by our friends that the manager's reception was an exceptional event to attend. At their reception, the general manager of the Excellence Properties spoke with them along with several other managers of this particular property. They also told us of waiters serving appetizers from kayaks in the pool and an all around festive event. When we went to our event, it was held in the Cafe bar area (no pools or waiters in kayaks), we didn't even see any managers, food, or festive activities. We had a build up expectation that was splashed with cold water. If you go to this Excellence location, skip the managers reception, it is a waste of time. We planned our afternoon and evening around this only to be disappointed.

Sun Screen - make sure you bring plenty of your own! We had brought two spray bottles with us but ran out. We went into the shop to buy more, $40 for a bottle! This same bottle is $10 in the states. I understand a need for a markup, but this was taking advantage of captive guests.

We learned by accident about the daily entertainment and lunches on the beach. Each day was a different theme for food and live music. We really enjoyed sitting down and partaking in the variety of food and music. It ranged from country, rock, and acoustic. We particularly liked the paella cooking class and lunch. It was some of the best paella we have tasted.

Room Tip: We stayed in a ground floor location on the lazy river. It was very nice!
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nyack, New York, United States
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

There are a lot of all-inclusives around Cancun so why not shop around? Not necessary if you find a truly perfect spot to beach out! Yes it's a gorgeous spot with a soft sandy beach, 10 pools, amazing views especially if you upgrade to an oceanfront room, lots of food choices, entertainment at night, a small gym and drinks to sample. And you may be able to find all that elsewhere but what makes Excellence Playa Mujeres unique is its staff.
There isn't a staff member who does not smile and offer you an ola' or a buenas dias each morning. And the concierge staff, the dinning staff, the bartenders, the operators- everyone who speaks fluent English are there to make your stay smooth.
We were newbies in November and couldn't wait to return for our usual March vacation. We hope to be back for our 3rd visit and we are not alone. It was amazing to meet up with returnees, raving about the same things as we did.
Thanks again too, to my Excellent travel agent, Maris Torres at Liberty Travel on Route 4 in New Jersey. In fact if you decide to spend a vacation there book through Liberty for special perks.
For an Excellent vacation choose Excellence Playa Mujeres.

Room Tip: Ocean Front!
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

Fabian at the Sol bar was amazing! Best bartender we have ever met!!!! The only complaint we have is that this was supposed to be an all inclusive no tip resort and service was offered quicker and better to people that tip (Fabian excluded). Also, at check-in, they should advise us to order coffee service and flesh flowers.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Farmington, Connecticut
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2014

We had an amazing time. We had tried the Sandals all-inclusive resort previously and we didn't love it. Therefore, we were hesitant to try another all-inclusive property. The staff, the food/drinks, the grounds and the security was everything we had hoped. The only reason we didn't rate it 5 out of 5 is because our rooms ( we had three rooms total throughout the resort) had a strong musty smell. They did have incense that you can burn but we didn't love that smell either. Once we got home, everything smelled musty.

Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Excellence Playa Mujeres

Address: Prolongacion Bonampak, S/N, Punta Sam | Lote Terrenos 001 MZ. 001 Sm. 003, Zona Continental, Playa Mujeres 77400, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Playa Mujeres
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Mujeres
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Mujeres
#1 Spa Hotel in Playa Mujeres
#1 Luxury Hotel in Playa Mujeres
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Excellence Playa Mujeres 5*
Number of rooms: 450
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury adults-only resort nestled among seven swimming pools on a powdery white sand beach, in a community that boasts a spectacular Greg Norman signature golf course. This jewel of Cancun sets a new standard of luxury for all-inclusives with finely tuned amenities such as one-of-a-kind accommodations including two-story rooftop terrace suites with a private Hydro-Spa pool, meticulous service, gourmet cuisine, an exquisite spa and the signature Excellence Club. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Excellence Playa Mujeres Hotel Playa Mujeres
Excellence Hotel Playa Mujeres
Playa Mujeres Excellence Hotel
Excellence Playa Mujeres Cancun

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