The Royal Hideaway was amazing on so many levels. It was very high on appointments – every nook and cranny was so clean, well maintained, inviting, classy, upscale and refreshing. It was very low on activities – which for this type of crowd – more affluent, adults only – was perfect. We don’t need pool volleyball and blaring music on the beach. There was a delightful couple we met (well, they made it a point to meet everyone there!) for whom this was their 44th stay at Royal. That says a lot. It size was perfect -- a short walk from beach to front and side to side, yet so well landscaped we felt as if we were walking through our private tropical jungle.
Location: Playacar was a delightful section of the region. It is a gated community with many beach homes as well as resorts. We all felt extremely comfortable walking outside the resort within the Playacar community. Too often we've been to nice resorts where you dare not walk off the property. Completely not the case in Playacar. Sidewalks were plenty, and daily walks/runs off the resort were delightful. Royal Hideway is about a 15 minute walk from downtown Playa Del Carmen, which is close enough (for us) to have walked there 3 times yet far enough away from the craziness that the town brings. A cab ride is about $7 for those that don’t want to walk. It was about a 50 drive from the airport. What was particularly attractive about the location is that is about equidistant from Cancun and Tulum so we were easily able to day-trip further south.
Arrival: We were warmly greeted and seated, and immediately given attention. We were presented champagne and given an overview of the property and promptly escorted to our rooms. We were quartered in the building closest to the pool and beach and upon arrival, and even found our tub fill with warm water, fresh bubbles and rose petals. Absolutely beyond expectations.
Appearance: Royal was immaculate. Even the heavily used beach/pool bathroom was always spotless. Hard to image given the activity, but there was never water or sand on the floor, the toilet paper was always folded in a nice triangle, the sinks always wiped clean. The pools were immaculate. There is a total of 5 pool – 2 main and 3 tucked around the property. The 3 secondary pools are scarcely used and provided delightful sanctuary. The grounds were filled with fountains and walking bridges that were kept bug, leaf and coconut fee. It really was spotless. The main building (reception, two of the restaurants, entrance, spa, are all located there) was a gem. It made us feel like royalty.
Beach: The beach was immaculate. There was never a shortage of chairs, the sand was so clean and the water is that majestic blue/green you see in pictures. Wait (food/drink) service on the beach was frequent enough. The beach itself was larger than most. This, in part, is because the Playacar is a very safe area so the resort doesn't fence off its portion of the beach. Rather, we could stroll up and down the beach, past a half dozen other resorts without worry or care. It was deep as well – meaning the distance from the resort to the ocean was substantial in addition to the width.
Pools: Dreamy. Service around the pools was amazing. Fresh fruit and water delivered without asking and wait service readily available. The pools were spotless. There was always a grill out/buffet around the pool for lunch if you wanted. One day, the fish they grilled was so fresh, they were literally filleting on the spot. It could not have been any fresher or more delicious.
Restaurants. 5, 6, 7 course meals were par for the course. For people that love to make dinner their nightlife, it was perfect. We went with another couple and found the 2 hour dinners delightful. Not a bad meal and a great variety – Italian, Asian, Grillhouse were exquisite. The one unexpected was dinner reservations tended to be more European style – 8pm was very early so we ended up dining a few nights starting around 9:30p. As a result, we found ourselves “snacking” at the beach front deck for Happy Hour around 5p. Which was delightful with the breeze and the view. But it is something you may want to queue your future clients.
The only knock about the entire experience was breakfast. There were two breakfast options listed – one buffet, one sit down. The sit down was closed all but our first AM. The buffet – delightful setting – was chaos. While there were a dozen or more open tables, we would wait 10 minutes some mornings to be seated. This is an inefficient process that can be easily fixed. The second knock was the omelette station. They had one guy making omelettes who was delightful but very slowly. So we were queued up, sometimes 5 people deep, standing for 10 minutes waiting for an omelette The wait staff for dinner was very professional and it was so classy. Some people may not like the slow pace but we did not mind at all. One night we wanted to get to bed early (we had a scuba excursion planned the early the next AM and wanted max sleep) so we simply asked for them to speed things up and they were very accommodating. Another thing to queue your future customers to is the portion size is more European (small and sensible!). But with six courses over two hours, you don’t need U.S. portion sizes.
Roomservice. Prompt, friendly and enough variety.
Nightlife. Virtually non-existant. Which for us was fine. They had some very low key signer/guitarist each night at the one bar that remained open at night. It gathered a small, quite crowd. It was fine for this style of place. If someone really wants nightlife, they can go to Playa del Carmen.
- Also Known As:
- Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel
- Royal Hideaway Playacar And Occidental Resorts
- Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Hideaway
- Royal Hideaway Playacar Occidental Hotel
- Royal Hideaway Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Hideaway Mexico
- Occidental Royal Hideaway
- Royal Hideaway Playacar Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
- 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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