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“Great Service” 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 #14 of 201 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Great Service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013

I really enjoyed our week at Royal Hideway Playacar. This is a smaller, quieter hotel, no crazy games around the pool.

The infinity pool is nice as it appears to roll onto the beach. Sitting by the pool and seeing the ocean is nice. Comfortable chairs that you do not have to fight for, many towels you do not have to sign out and guard. Great room service and service on the beach in the pool, anywhere.

The food is excellent, the service is the best I have ever had. Seafood is the best, steak could be better.

The rooms are nice, a good size however they are getting a bit dated.

Close to town, you can walk in about 15 minutes.

Room Tip: We stayed in a basic room and it was spacious (not ocean view) and comfortable. Only issue is jacuz...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
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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
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English first
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013 via mobile

Came here for 10 days for the first time in January 2012. I have been to Cancun a couple of times staying at the JW Marriott in the hotel zone. The RH is quiet and is not full of load holiday makers with massive beakers of cold beer, the clientele is more upscale. Some might say it is an older clientele but I would say that it is a very mixed clientele made up mainly of couples with quite a few honeymooners.
There are waters ports available depending on the sea and wind and you can arrange trips very easily from the agency in the hotel. I would recommend the combined horse ride and reef snorkel. Take the morning session and you get to snorkel the reef alone with no other tourists which makes it very special and riding to and from the beach makes it quite special.
The food at the hotel is served in 6 restaurants with no buffet. This was perfect for us as we were happy to eat in an unhurried manner (we are on holiday after all). The quality of the food is higher than I expected and fr superior to the JW Marriott, the only one that disappointed was Spices as it was a little greasy.
The two weekly dinner shows are entertaining, don't expect Cirque du Soleil but it makes for a different evening. Alex and his team really ensure that you are well looked after and the quiz is a good humoured competition that everyone enjoyed.
There are plenty of recliners and the beech is lovelly and the staff will help you set yourself up on the beach and with your green flag in hand the drinks will be brought to you, very civilised!!
We met a number of couples who had been here before, this does seem to be a place people return too and this was a major reason I came in the first place.
Would definitely recommend.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, April 9, 2013
Dear LondonAlexS

We are delighted that you had a great experience at Royal Hideaway Playacar. Our goal is to always exceed our guests’ expectations, and we thank you for taking the time to share your comments.
We are happy to read you enjoyed some of the excursions in the Riviera Maya, next time we suggest you visit Xcaret, Cobá, Tulum or even Chichen Itza for a truly Mayan experience.

Thank you for your comments and suggestions, we take into consideration all these to keep improving. Please let us know about your next visit, we would love to host you again and have you enjoy your drinks while on the beach.

With all my best regards,
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St Louis
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2013

This was our second trip to Royal Hideaway. Wife and I hadn't been back since 2003 so was hopeful it would live up to our memories. The resort is still very well maintained and the staff goes out of their way to ensure your expectations are met. We have been to some 5 diamond hotels in US and Mexico and feel RH compares is on par. The Lobby and grounds are very grand, the rooms are clean and attractive with flat screens tv, ipod sound docks, and all marble baths. Pools and hot tubs were clean and it was fun to find a hidden pool all alone. Only complaint- this time of year the pool is not heated and the water was cold. The food is very good- it's not the same level of 5 star in US but for the money is close. We did the buffet at spices each morning which is straight forward but good. Lunch was the grill all but one day at spices. Fish tacos at spices were very good. We did Ventanas, Palazo, and Azia for dinner. Ventana is a beautiful restaurant with a modern menu- wife and i were very happy with our meal but chose not to go back. Service at Palozo was on the slower side and the food was good with some interesting twists. Azia was our favorite meal. People have commented on portion size and we ordered 3 entrees each night and split all three just to try different items which was a lot of food. We met a great couple and joined them for a dinner show which was entertaining but I was not impressed with the food. After dinner we went to the bar each night for their entertainment which we enjoyed. The music was good and the trivia night was a lot of fun. The resort is quiet but you can have as much fun as you want. All premium liquor as you would expect. We didn't go into town but did go to the shops across the street in Playacar which was perfect for the gifts we needed. Some of the staff that went out of their way and did a great job were Jesus, Martin, Alex, and Leo. We would love to go back and bring a group of friends. You can't beat it for the money.

Room Tip: ask to stay near the pool. its a small resort but if you're room is up against the other resort...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Detroit, Michigan
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2013

I wanted to love this resort but unfortunately became very ill. After 5 days on site I had an immediate and violent sickness after eating dinner on site. The hotel could not get me out fast enough, even signifigantly raising our nightly rate. I went to another hotel but within hours was hospitalized in Mexico with Norovirus. We have left numerous messages for the Royal Hideaway manager with no response back at all. Very sad customer service. Travelers beware of what you food you consume here and ensure that you constantly wash your hands. If you do need the hotel doctor it is $180 cash plus cost of meds so you may want to stash cash for medical emergencies.

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, March 13, 2013
Dear S J,

I understand that the hotel is currently working with you to resolve this issue, and I will follow up with you directly via TripAdvisor today to check-in.

Please know that we have not received any reports of sickness at the resort.
We follow US and international standards and procedures for food safety and food handling. We are also certified by Preverisk and Distintivo "H.” The certification process includes routine inspections which are supplemented by our daily internal inspections to ensure the standards are met.
We take all reports of this nature very seriously, and worked Preverisk to thoroughly inspect the entire property after learning about your experience. They did not find any evidence of the virus.
Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. We value your comments as they help us to continuously improve upon our high standards of service.
Sincerely,
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New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2013

Background: I am mid 40s and my wife is mid to late 30s. This is our first time to Playa del Carman and love its swim-able beach. We had stayed in Cancun 4 times in the past: Dreams, Live Aqua X2, Sun Palace. We love gourmet food, taste, presentation, vibe.
We stayed at Royal Hideaway during 10/23-10/29/12. After arrived at CUN, we were picked up by Cancun Transfer private van and began our journey. The transfer was on time and the van left the airport right away. The van company provided us cold water upon arrival and it was a nice touch. After about 90 mins from CUN, we were greeted by the staff at RH and checked in immediately. very prompt and attentive. I made meal reservation right away as I knew all dinners needed reservation.

Pros: Food were very good in AI standard and even exceeded some so called good restaurants at NYC without the bills. I love this. We tried all restaurants at RH, I love the sushi from the Asian restaurant. We also had the hibachi but found the chef had put way too many soy sauce to sauteed the food. I am quite healthy conscious and hope they can cut down the use of soy sauce and use chicken broth instead. As an Asian myself, I wish I can see this and enjoy it better next time. Italian restaurant has a dark, romantic vibe. however, we both found the dining experience was very dread. may be because we had sunbathe for a whole day and we were tired. Again, I wish to see more vegetable based dishes on the menu. Food were too heavy for Tropical. the Signature restaurant Las Ventanas was very good. The white deco are modern and bright which lighted up our spirit very well. Food were well presented. The Grill--- A breakfast place to be. but I do think the choice, presentation, taste were just ok. It seems that RH doesn't put much attention in this area. To compare with my previous experience at Live Aqua, LA wins a mile over RH. Room Service has a very limited choice and boring. End up we had a big hard time to choose from the thin limited menu. I think RH has to improve in this era. Again, Live Aqua is very good in Room Service menu. The deck where we went for lunch at the pool in afternoon. Food some hours were sooooo good and sometimes were just ok. I think it depends on who is cooking. I had once ordered a Fish and chips that was so good and I ordered it again an hour later, quality went downhill. I guess the person who made it the first time must have gone. Drink service were very good. It has my favorite Glass-like highball plastic cup. lol... I can't stand places give me the cafeteria style plastic cup eg. in Sun Palace. This is not a 5 stars should do. Their drinks were very good and they allow lunch by the pool... This is a plus and must for me. To enjoy my sunbathing and filling up my stomach the same time.

We stayed at the ground floor villa. Being able to have breakfast outside our balcony, with iPad on hand was a great experience. I love my room expect the noise issue I had which explained below under "cons".

cons--- i wish they can listen. 1. Please reconsider the dress up code for men. I really wish the smart causal attire will be allowed and I am not forced to put on my dress shoes, dress pants while I am on vacation. it is hard to pack with today's tightened airplane rule and I want to be more relax and smart. 2. please improve the reservation system, I called few times to make restaurants and was told the only availability was 9pm, 10pm. this is insane. I don't like it. 3. please improve the quality of your in-room pillows. we only had 6-7 small round shaped (nearly rounded) cushions on bed. I started to have neck pain in the 3rd night. 4. Please fix the sound proof system in the inter connecting room. The noise (the couple next to us were making out) was infusing through the inter connecting room door and we could hear anything including he ordered beer afterward. it was the worse hotel experience I have ever had. My room number was 3014.

overall. i love this place and I think I may come again. the food is a big draw to me to return. However, with the dress code issue that is uncomfortable to me, I could more likely to try other same class AI resorts. However, Royal Hideaway is a very unique fine AI and Thank You for bring us there for a great experience!!!

P.S. This AI is definitely for couples in their late 30s at least and best with a home girls/ guys personality. Definitely not for people in group looking for party, for fun. The patrons here were well behaved, image concerned and looking for peaceful relax vacation.

Room Tip: Watch out the rooms with inter-connecting door. and make sure BOTH doors are closed. your neighbors...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Winnipeg, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2013

Service was great, staff very good, hotel is upscale but is a quiet resort with a very old client. I felt like i spent a week in a seniors complex. Service in restaurants was very slow and food was nothing special. No buffet so you cannot move at your own speed. The beach has a big sand barge across it which makes it imposible to body surf or use a boogie board. There is little to no recreation and i did not see them let out a kayak once during my time there. They let us use a boggie board once however it was very badly broken. Unless you are someone who likes to sit and do NOTHING then stay away. I felt like i just wasted a week of my life.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, February 26, 2013
Dear winnipeg123456

Thank you for sharing your feedback on Trip Advisor. We are happy that you enjoyed the service of our friendly staff; however I’m disappointed that your trip did not meet your expectations.
At Royal Hideaway we strive to provide personalized service throughout the hotel and at all the restaurants. We do provide a buffet breakfast at Spices, and we also enjoy the opportunity to cater to our guests at our a la carte restaurants. I’m surprised by your comments about our cuisine, as guests typically rave about their dining experiences at our resort. I’ve discussed your review with our Executive Chef, who is always open to feedback and looking to enhance our menus.
We’re a tropical oasis for our guests, and while the hotel is more relaxed guests enjoy Barrakuda, the diving center on site. Barrakuda provides kayaks, catamarans, snorkels, boogie boards and much more. We also have many activities to do during the day including yoga, aqua-aerobics, ping pong, tennis and salsa lessons. I’ve shared your comments with our activities team to see how they can make the guest experience even more fun.
We do hope that you’ll give us a second chance at Royal Hideaway.

Sincerely,
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Cross Roads, Texas
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

This was our 7th trip to the Royal Hideaway. First time to write a review. We obviously love this place and we have traveled quite a bit. We keep coming back for more. The start in the Manager, Juan Agarrista. A gentleman and a man who knows how to create excellence. Many of the staff have been here since we started coming years ago. They remember us by name. The resort is a wonderfully quiet place for respite, reconnection, romance and just plain fun. For an all inclusive the foot is excellent. Actually I should say the foot is excellent regardless of what kind of a resort it is but for an all inclusive it's amazing. The Chef is very creative and manages all of the restaurants. This allows for creativity at each and consistency in good food and good service. The Chef's Table experience under the watchful eye of the head chef is exceptional and filled with a journey of flavors that are both fun and delicious. Use of local fruits, vegetables, meats etc coupled with traditional touches from the are make this truly unique. The Pool is, well, The Pool. A double pool with one being infinity facing the ocean and right at the newly installed beach that rivals any beach. Quiet, and inviting. Great drinks. Good and personal service. We can and do spend entire days at the pool. The wifi allows for great connectivity or just downloading another book to read on your iPad. The hot tubs are well tended and well placed. Everything is clean and very well maintained. The grounds are beautiful and idyllic. The walk to dinner in the the evening, especially on moon lit nights as we had on our last trip, are just priceless. As for the restaurants.. For a resort this size there are many choices. The Italian restautant, The Pallazzo, is top notch. Great Italian food and impeccable service. The setting inside is beautiful and there is typically a wandering violinist or better yet a Cellist, playing. The food is great. The Osso Bucco is nop notch. The Gnochi in pest I had recently was incredibly fresh and well prepared. Loved the creative salads. Much of their pasta is made fresh. The sauces and gravies are excellent. Our last visit we were placed on the patio which is on the 3rd floor of the main resort building and overlooks the entire resort and great views of Cozumel island. With the 3 dozen roses, perfectly arranged and then placed on the table for our arrival (Anniversary) and the full moon and tropical breezes with clouds floating by it was about as romantic as you can possibly dial up. The Las Ventanas is off the charts for creativity. The food is fun to figure out and even more fun to eat. A great variety of salts to spice things up. Beautiful dining room. Great service and, by the way, the kitchen is spotless and the kitchen staff well disciplined and experienced. The Grill is a bit more casual and serves grilled foods down by the ocean with great views and an open air experience. While it's not like the steak houses we have in the US it is, again, local fare and nicely cooked and prepared. The Azia restaurant has teppanyaki, which is not my favorite but is well done. The sushi is OK but not great. I am more of a fan of sashimi. The restaurant is clean and friendly and the service is good. There is another restaurant, Spices, but we just eat breakfast there. Great selection of well prepared foods. As noted the beach is first class and it's a fun walk now to Playa Del Carmen's harbor, shops and Senor Frogs from the resort. Probably 1/2 mile I would guess. The rooms are in individual buildings and are nice. They are not over the top but well appointed and the service is very good. The resort is quiet and sleep is not an issue. If you are looking for drinking games, people shouting over microphones, AC/DC and that kind of stuff it is all next door, but not here. ( My AC/DC is on my headphones but more typically jazz.) An excellent place for those who appreciate quality, excellent service and relaxing.

  • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RoyalHideaway1, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Hideaway Playacar, responded to this review, March 21, 2013
Dear gjoneslaw

Thank you for choosing Royal Hideaway to celebrate your anniversary, continued loyalty and for sharing your experience.

Our Executive Chef and food and beverage team were thrilled by your review. The Chef´s Table is a very unique experience offering guests customized dining with the opportunity to interact with Executive Chef Villafaña and his team while enjoying unique dishes created exclusively for the Chef’s Table.
The event invites epicureans to witness the making of a decadent tasting menu, tucked away in an exclusive section of the kitchen of Las Ventanas. The menu changes each week, and the chef will certainly take into consideration each guest’s personal tastes and dietary requirements. This is experience is an add-on service to the all-inclusive plan.

We hope to host you again near in the future!
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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 ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Business Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#13 Luxury 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 And Occidental Resorts
Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Playa Del Carmen
Royal Hideaway Mexico
Occidental Royal Hideaway
Royal Hideaway Playacar Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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