We just returned from a three night stay at the Banyan Tree Mayakoba. This was to be the highlight of our trip to Mexico and sadly it didn't work out that way. As we were pulling up to the Banyan Tree we were really impressed with the architecture. The lobby area is simply stunning and dramatic!
Our room was not ready upon arrival which was understandable since we were early.. however we didn't get to our room until about 4pm. They placed us in villa 404 which has to be the worst Garden Villa location on the property. Right next to the main drive into the resort and it was so loud outside in the courtyard. Also what suprised me the most was the wear and tear of the villa. The inside floors were stained and looked dirty and the whole villa was dark. The bathroom was also smaller than I imagined. The exterior of the villa, and garden also were a bit of a let down with burnt and torn up grass and poor maintenance of the roof. We were moved to another villa, 508 which was much better inside however the exterior continued to have the same issues and suprisingly you could hear the main highway from even inside the villa.
We had multiple issues with the hotel, the worst being food poisoning from Sands restaurant. I spoke to the front desk the following day to let them know what happened and they neither apologized or offered to investigate. It was really odd. We found the service at the beach to be hit or miss. Some days we were greeted by name and some days there was nobody to be found. Never received complimentary treats like we are used to at Four Seasons hotels or other luxury properties. We always had to go search for staff to take drink orders. We let the hotel know prior to arrival that we were celebrating an anniversary however there was no congratulations and turndown service was hit or miss as well as theynever had slippers placed next to the bed. I have an allergy to seeds and this was communicated to the waiter at our dinner at Saffron. They brough us over some goodies after our meal which was all seeds. Just the attention to detail is missing. We were charged for a car service we didn't use but this was rectified at check out. Besides the food poisoning these are small issues but everything just kept adding up. We sent an email to the assistant front office manager to let her know about our stay and we never received a response. It just seems that the hotel caters to group business and the leisure traveler is forgotten. I expected more from the Banyan Tree.
We did like our spa treatments.. in fact mine was the best I have ever had and we have been lucky enough to go to some wonderful spa's in Asia, including the spas at thePeninsula Bangkok, Landmark Mandarin Oriental, and Four Seasons Hong Kong. My partner commented how he didn't like the layout of the Spa. He didn't like that there was no true locker area and that there is a $48 charge to use the wet facilities which seems like nickel and diming when you are paying $600 for a standard villa. We also loved Saffron... maybe because its setting is beautiful... and maybe because we love Thai food! It was nice to eat something different after 7 nights in Mexico!
Finally, we stayed at a hotel before called the Blue Diamond Riviera Maya. This was the former Mandarin Oriental. I was a bit worried about staying there as I wasn't expecting to get a true luxury experience. I was wrong. We had a beautiful suite, which was larger inside, and in better condition than our villa at the Banyan Tree. The service was leaps and bounds better than the Banyan Tree. I believe many of the staff are left over from when it was the Mandarin Oriental so that may be why it was so good. The property is all inclusive, which was another worry for me. We found the breakfast and lunch to be of excellent quality and what we are accustom to at luxury properties. Dinner was a bit of a let down as it wasn't as good as the other two meals but perfectly adequate. The spa facilities were beautiful and we loved the south beach style vibe by there pool area.
Make sure to avoid rooms near the entrance road to the resort.. rooms in the low 400's if bookin...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
January 30, 2013
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Thank you very much for staying recently at Banyan Tree Mayakoba and taking a few minutes to write your comment.
I am deeply saddened of the incidences that happened during your stay and we are working hard to ensure that the same are not repeated in the future. Our aim is to satisfy our guests, could be with a romantic turn down service for their anniversary or with the immediately help to resolve any problem our guests may have. Please be kindly assured that your remarks will be discussed with our department heads and that the required action and measures will be taken.
Again, I sincerely apologize that you did not have a perfect stay at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, and that we felt short of your expectations. I am extremely sorry that you had a bad experience with us and I do hope that we are going to be able to restore your confidence into our brand.
With best wishes,
Area General Manager
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.