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“Una maravilla!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Royal Hideaway Playacar

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Royal Hideaway Playacar
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Lote Hotelero No. 6 Fracc., Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Resorts)   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 199 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Rockville Centre, New York
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Una maravilla!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2013

If you are looking for a few days of rest and relaxation, in a lovely area, think about The Royal Hideaway Playacar in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. They have five varied restaurants of which we tried four and the food was uniformly excellent.
The staff is well-trained, friendly and eager to serve. The grounds and the adjoining beach are delightful. Looking forward to going back next year.

Room Tip: The hotel is divided into eight or so individual villas. We were in #31 which was the closest to th...
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  • Stayed January 2013, 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
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (490)
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Hamilton, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2013

Again, stayed at this resort for my FAM trip with my company and have to say it was not, in my opinion, a 5 and a half star property.

Sure the rooms are spectacular, the beach is gorgeous and the location is prime but this really felt like any other hotel. The only thing that really did make it stand out was the conceirge in every building who was always very eager to help out.

We ate 2 meals at the gourmet a la cartes and I have to say, the food was okay. We didn't get a menu to pick from, it was alreayd prepicked and we had 2 options to choose from. (Being a picky eater, this really didn't go to well with my stomach and I ended up just sticking to bread). The presentation of the food was excellent, I'm just very picky with what I do like etc.

The rooms were gorgeous. Huge, with 2 double beds or a king, a very nice porch area with 2 chairs and a table as well as a large sized bathroom.

Another downfall to this resort is the lack of poolbar. I'm one of those people where I do enjoy lounging in the pool at the pool bar the entire time I'm on vacation and with the lack of pool bar it made it quiet difficult.

I believe this resort would definitely be best suited for those couples 40+ as it is a more relaxing, upscale and quiet resort.

Service is excellent, just was not somewhere that would suit anyone under 35.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Albans, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2013

We first visited the area several years ago but had forgotten just how good it is and there has been plenty of (positive) development in the area in the last few years. We only stayed for a week last time which is not long enough for transatlantic visitors so we indulged in the full 14 nights this time. The Hotel Royal Hideaway is more intimate than many of the large sprawling Hotels in the area and has a good mix of mainly Americans and Canadians with only a sprinkling of Brits because I don't think it is yet fully on the radar of the UK market and Tour Operators but I suspect that won't last so get in quick!!

The jewel in the crown of this Hotel is the food and service. There are five al la carte restaurants to choose from all of which are first class. It is rare to get such a consistent level of quality in all the restaurants but if I had to choose favourites then Azia (Thai/Japanese) and and Palazzo (Italian) were outstanding for us. The restaurants are all very "upscale" as our American cousins would say so those that prefer a really informal dining experience or buffets may be disappointed but steaks in the Grill which overlooks the beach and is slightly more relaxed are superb. I am a big eater and hate those pretentious restaurants where the portions are so small but wasn't disappointed here as the quantities were excellent without being piled high. I would suggest that the Hotel relaxes a little and allows dress shorts in the two lower key venues as these days a lot of men prefer this informal style on the odd occasion.

As mentioned above the service in the bars and restaurants is first class if a little "programmed". I say that because all the standard "speeches" made by the staff are identical wherever you go and do cause some amusement amongst the guests with the dryer sense of humour but you can easily forgive this because the staff are hugely charming and enthusiastic so we'll forgive them their scripted patter on this occasion!! The team that provide the pool and beach drinks service are the best in that they have developed the confidence to go "off message" and have a good banter with the guests. Plus you will rarely be without a drink in your hand alcoholic or otherwise!!

The other clue to this place is in the name - "Hideaway". The only complaint we heard was that the Hotel was too "quiet" for some but for most of the guests I spoke to (and trust me I do like a chat) that was the thing that appeals the most and I agree. You only have to hear the antics in the Hotels either side next door with their screaming animators urging the guests for yet another day and nighttime of "Butlins style" activity with added loud pumping music. I am not adverse to a bit of action but they did seem to be "full on" all day long so if you like that sort of thing don't book the Royal Hideaway! There are activities but it is all very gentle and the emphasis is very much on peace and quiet and relaxation. There are two pools to sunbathe around and they never feel crowded and the beach in front is huge so finding a nice quiet space is never a problem.

The rooms are all spacious and well appointed and certainly live up to the 5 star billing. Our maid on a couple of occasions did some rather ornate towel arrangements which were very charming and the romantics will appreciate them (I have attached a photo of an example). In my view the layout of the complex means that there isn't really a good or bad block to be in as each one has pros and cons depending on whether you prefer to be closer to the pool and beach or closer to the bars and restaurants - tough choices!!! Each block has a concierge who will arrange dinner choices and any trips and excursions you may require. They are not the best at sticking to their advertised attendance times but they aren't difficult to track down so that wasn't a problem.

The grounds of the Hotel are beautifully maintained and lush and very peaceful and it is a pleasant stroll from one end of the complex to the other. The reception area and main building are very grand and certainly have that 5 star feel about them. Afternoon tea is served up there and is very ornate and is done with a great sense of occasion but sadly the cakes and sandwiches rather inexplicably are a disappointment. That may just be because the standard of food everywhere else is so high and is only a minor detail. Food is served all day down at the beachside grill so nobody goes hungry for sure and there were plenty of "ample" waistlines on show to prove that fact. I must confess to adding several kilos myself during my stay so I am in no position to criticise!!

The only negative to mention is the shows in the dinner cabaret venue which were the subject of much comment in how poor they were. They are bad to the point of amusement but this is only a reflection of the fact that they have clearly had no significant investment in either the quality of performers or the production in terms of choreography or Direction so whilst performed with amateur enthusiasm nobody should expect Las Vegas or Cruise Ship quality. "Charming" is the kindest word to describe them but most guests I spoke with used stronger adjectives. It is such a minor part of the Hotel experience that it didn't affect our enjoyment of the holiday in anyway and it just goes to show that this excellent team are like the rest of us in not being 100% perfect!

It was interesting that there was lots of "defectors" from mainstream Caribbean destinations like Barbados who had chosen Playa Del Carmen and the area for the quality of the Hotels and value and I totally agree. The Caribbean needs to up its game in my option because they have some serious competition here both in terms of quality and superb value. We paid 40% less than our Hotel in St Lucia last year for a least 15-20% more in quality. We won't be the only ones to notice the difference.

It was nice to hear our taxi driver tell us on the way there that we had chosen the best Hotel on the Mayan Riviera in his opinion (and there is plenty of strong competition) and in hindsight he is probably right. It is a great choice for couples wanting a stylish and romantic holiday whether a honeymoon or celebrating an anniversary or in my case just love going on holiday together! A big "thumbs up" from me for the Royal Hideaway.

  • Stayed January 2013, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

I choose this hotel for the choice of restaurants (5). Mexican was mostly closed and the one night we did go to it the room was very cold so not very enjoyable. We were there 2 weeks so it got a bit tiring having to anticipate choice and time of where we wanted to eat 3-4 nights ahead. I would have preferred to have one restaurant that was more casual that you didn't have to book even if it had to be a buffet. Particularly for the first night and if we had been out for a day's sight seeing. As we were there for 2 weeks the menu in the 4 restaurants need to either have more choice or be rotated each week. Probably more suitable to one week stay.
Also I didn't like having to queue for breakfast for 10-15 minutes even for an inside table. There was a second breakfast restaurant open a few of the days but it was a la carte only with not enough choice for me but my husband enjoyed the grandness of it and the poached eggs. Food in general was very good but not excellent. Portions absolutely fine. In many ways lunch was even better than dinner - more varied with a lovely barbecue some days. Just expected the restaurants to be a bit better with more choice on the menu and greater availability for booking.
Beach perfect - lovely sand, always a bed available, peaceful as no games or children, and regular drink service if required. Good beach towels from 8 in the morning. Afternoon tea was nice - I had a lovely Mexican coffee.
Very good choice and availability of drinks on the all-inclusive.
We used the bikes which was fun, but they were a bit basic for a quality hotel (but seemed similar to other rental bikes around). Nevertheless we enjoyed cycling the 10 quick minutes into Playa del Carmen several times and we were able to stop off at the local Mayan ruins on the way.
Rooms were very lovely - spacious with good walk in shower as well as a bath. Concierge always friendly and helpful, as were all staff throughout.
Took a taxi from the hotel to Tulum who waited for us - can't remember the price but was worth it.
As it is all-inclusive I found it awkward that many people still tipped at each service of drinks or meal. I prefer to tip at the end of my stay to a pot that is split among all workers, and to specific people such as the room cleaners. All-inclusive should take away the need to carry money but others tipping around us made it less relaxing. Happy to tip at the end.
Used the Spa which was very expensive and not value for money. Husband had head and back massage which was ok but not great, and my reflexology was not at all reflexology - just a nice foot massage and definitely not worth the money. We should have gone into town instead.
Good free wifi throughout even on the beach.
In general we were happy with our choice as the beach was perfect and quieter than the surrounding hotels.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 4 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.
Mountain View, California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

Hightlights

1) Beautiful Grounds and a very nice functional room, wet bar all
inclusive was nice touch. They knew it was our anniversary so they
prepared a nice bath and decorated the room.

2) Overall food and drink quality was high

3) The Beach is the best in Playa Del Carmen.

4) Never too crowded despite being there in a peak season. Always a
table available.

5) Location was 20 minutes walk to 5th Ave. in Playa Del Carmen

Lowlights

1) Its a 55+ kinda joint

2) Service at the front desk was slow and left a little to be desired

3) Spa services were very pricey

4) The Club Royale show was absolutely atrocious

5) The hot tubs weren't that hot and the pool wasn't heated.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

Royal Hideaway is one of the most beautiful hotels I've ever stayed in and I travel extensively and stay at top rate hotels. The facilities were gorgeous and the staff was exceptional. When you arrive at the main building you are greeted upon check in with a glass of champagn. Checking in easy and you are given your room assignment. The rooms are spread out over the hotel grounds in two story buildings which have approximately 10 rooms. Each building has its own concierge. The walk though the grounds to get to your room, the beach or pool is about as romantic as you'll ever find with small bridges, fountains and lush grounds. The hotel is all inclusive and you have a choice of several restaurants which are all amazing. No matter how much you try you cannot have a bad time at this resort. If you're looking for a romantic resort where the ambience, food, service is par excellence don't even hesitate or look anywhere else cause it just doesn't get better than this.

Room Tip: Rooms on the 2nd floor have a better view but there are no elevators so you have to climb a flight o...
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  • Stayed January 2013, 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
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Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

It was divine......great service......good food......but almost too "upscale". When on vacation it would be nice to not have a formal dinner reservation every night, but as an option be able to go to a causal restaurant in your dressy shorts and have a light dinner. Especially on the night you arrive and you are disoriented and dead tired. I believe that every resort should have a bar by the pool or near the lobby, with bar stools to sit and chat and have a casual drink with other guests. The only entertainment during the day was a few staff members and a couple of guests singing "Love Is In The Air", which became pretty tired by day three. PS - they need good pillows rather than lots of teeny, tiny ones.

Needs a little tweaking!

Nitely entertainment was minimal

Room Tip: We were in the back forty. There are only three buildings close to the beach, pool that are worthy...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Hideaway Playacar

Address: Lote Hotelero No. 6 Fracc., Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Resorts)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Business Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#14 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#18 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Royal Hideaway Playacar 5*
Number of rooms: 200
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Award winning luxury all inlcusive resort set along the beautiful beaches of Playa del Carmen Mexico. Ideal setting in a serene environment for complete rest and relaxation. Adults only. Member of The Leading Hotels of the World. 2008 winner of the coveted AAA 5 Diamond Award. 11 villas with private concierge are spread throughout the property's immaculate grounds. Six gourmet restaurants serve delicasies in menu-style dining. A full service spa offers the ultimate in papmering and body treatments. Personalzied service and attention to detail set this resort a world apart. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Playacar And Occidental Resorts
Royal Hideaway Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Mexico
Occidental Royal Hideaway
Royal Hideaway Playacar Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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