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“Looking forward to our 5th visit” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Reef Playacar

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Reef Playacar
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Paseo Xaman-Ha, Ret. Sayil s/n | Fracc. Playacar, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #100 of 199 hotels in Playa del Carmen
Kansas City,MO
2 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Looking forward to our 5th visit”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2011

We are looking forward to our 5th visit in 6 years. We go every October and have brought family and friends along with us. The beach is wonderful. The grounds are very clean and well kept. Food is good and the staff is always friendly. The main reason we keep coming back is that the resort is small, reasonably priced, staff is great, beach is unbelievable, swim up bar is the best and the layout of the resort is beautiful. For the money, The Reef is the best way to go. For repeat guests, they give you lobster dinner, snorkel tour and many many more. You seriously can't go wrong with this resort. We've traveled the U.S. and we have traveled Puerto Vallarta. But we keep coming back to The Reef. My wife and I along with 2 others, look forward to another wonderful trip next month.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
We truly appreciate you took the time to share so many positive comments about our Resort. It is a pleasure to hear that you consider this hotel as a great value, and that for this reason you visit us every year. As you mentioned the natural setting at the hotel, overall cleanliness, relaxing atmosphere, customer service, beautiful beach and the quality of food are aspects that make this hotel unique. Please contact us before your next stay in order to make sure you will receive the special amenities for 5th visit! Warmest regards,
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (298)
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English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2011

The hotel is nice -lots of vegetation, and a nice sort of authentic feeling to the architecture. We got a nice room and it was comfortable.
Unfortunately, the service we got and many of the hotel "rules and regulations" ruined our family vacation. Staff at the three restaurants was nice and really made an effort. They were the only ones, though. Staff at the bars was mostly awful (and so were their drinks) and some of the staff at the reception was very unhelpful and even rude (I got yelled by someone who seemed to be a manager at the reception).
The hotel tries to make money out of everything they can. Wifi prices are outrageous and you can only use it in the lobby- what is more, they want to charge you the outrageous price for every device you want to connect! They try to charge you for using the safe in the room, many drinks and meals are not included in the supposedly "all-inclusive" plan, etc, etc.
Food in the main (buffet style) restaurant is terrible to a level I can't even describe. Breakfast was ok (mainly because I only ate fruits and ham and cheese), but lunch and dinner were awful- food was greasy, badly cooked, just plain horrible. Food in the other two restaurants was ok (and some of it was even good) but the menu was limited (at least what was included in "all-inclusive" plan) and the restaurants were small (had to wait for 30 min at one of them and the hotel was not even close to being full). Restaurants are closed on some of the nights (rotating or so).
The cleaning service was not great. You got the feeling they only made the bed and left.
The beachfront is TINY and chairs and gazebos are all crammed in a very small space.
We went there because we were traveling with my brother's family and kids stayed for free. I think we would not go back to this hotel even if it was free for children AND adults.

Room Tip: Go to a different hotel
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
Thank you for your feedback.
Analyzing your experience at our hotel, it seems to us that you did not receive enough information regarding the services we offer before making the hotel reservation. We would like to mention that for those who reserve a standard room there is an additional charge for the use of safe (optional). The safety deposit box is included in the superior room reservation, as well a the minibar stocked daily, a coffeemaker, bath ropes and a bottle of red wine upon arrival. We only offer internet connection at the lobby area, with an extra charge. We would also like to clarify that the hotel does offer the all inclusive plan, and offers luxurious additional amenities and services, such as bottles of wine from the wine list, premium drinks, lobster etc. at an additional charge.
This hotel offers a great value for money. We hope you enjoy your next vacation. Regards,
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Vancouver
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2011

We stayed here for our honeymoon, it was my first trip to Mexico. We loved the jungle setting, the agoutis and lizards running around, and the size of the resort. Our room was right by the pool and restaurants, it was a great location, we could also glimpse the ocean through the palm trees. The air conditioning was also great! One thing we didn't like was how hard the beds were but it was tolerable.

The staff were really friendly and helpful. Our romantic dinner on the beach got rained out by a terrible storm and Elmer and the guys at the italian restaurant went out of their way to make sure we still had a great night.

I would say the major drawback of this resort is how not great the food is. The food was usually just ok, we would have loved some more mexican dishes at the buffet. It's probably fine though if you are going on a lot of day trips or heading into Playa del Carmen to eat once in a while.

I would definitely reccomend this resort to others as long as an extremely gorgeous beach is more important to them than an extremely delicious meal!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
We are very glad to hear that you enjoyed your honeymoon at this Resort. Thank you for remarking the natural setting and size of the Resort. Thank you also for your positive feedback regarding our customer service.

We would like to mention that on our buffet restaurant we have a special area with Mexican food with different specialties every day. We regret that you did not notice this corner and we will make sure to share with the F&B department in order to make the necessary improvements.

Please contact us if you decide to visit us again. It will be a pleasure for us. Warm Regards,
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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2011

Perfect low key vacation. Clean beach. Good food. I loved the fact that we could eat in a restaurant and be served every night. Nice small resort.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
Thank you very much for your positive review! We look forward to welcoming you again. Best Regards,
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Collins, Colorado
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2011

My husband and I visited the Reef for his 30th birthday. It was our first trip to an all-inclusive resort and I did a lot or research about this particular hotel before booking. After the reviews my expectations were pretty low but the price was right and we figured as long as there was a beach we could make the best of it. We were very pleasantly surpirsed. The grounds were beautiful and they took very good care of them. One thing we both loved is that it wasn't a giant resort and they did their best to help the buildings blend in with the natural surroundings. The pool and beach area were great - clean and plenty of chairs/beds. Our room was clean apon arrival and cleaned very well every day. We didn't hear people through our walls but we definitely heard people outside walking up the stairs and to their rooms. It wasn't so terrible that it interupted our sleep, we only heard it when we were awake. Drinks and the service were good. The service was especially good in the nicer restuarants and Papo's Bar. My only complaint would be the food. It was not the best, especially in the buffet. Although, my husband and I are pretty picky. The restaurants were definitely better - I would recommend eating at them each night for dinner. Although, even the restaurants were not the best food and could get kinda of repetitive if you eat there each night.

Overall we had a great first time experience at an all-inclusive. We have already talked about going back with friends and/or family next year.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
We are very happy to hear that you enjoyed your first experience with an all inclusive at The Reef Resort!
You mentioned various aspects of the hotel which are specially recognized by guests such as our natural environment, natural cenotes, size of the hotel, cleanliness and excellent customer service.

We will take into consideration your comments about the food at the buffet restaurant and will share it with our F&B department.

We are very glad to know that our Resort exceeded your expectations, one of the best parts of vacation are the pleasant surprises.

Please contact us before coming back so we can inform you how to make the reservation with the special repeat costumer rates. Thank you very much for your time!
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Northern B.C.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2011

I guess I’ll start with something positive. The grounds were beautiful. The jungle setting, the giant squirrels, geckos etc. were a pleasant surprise. The groundsmen kept the walkways spotless despite the ever falling fruit. The restaurant and bar staff were very friendly and courteous with one exception, the pool snack bar, where I waited in line for quite a while then ordered, several Spanish speaking guests behind me ordered the same food and were given their food first. I should mention this was in the daytime and the time we visited in the evening it was a different cook who was very helpful. The buffet restaurant was very good, the food was excellent quality, though not a lot of seafood besides fish. The a la carte restaurants were very nice. The food at them was cooked perfectly but over half the entrees required a surcharge of $17. At the steak restaurant the only steak available without surcharge was flank. This differed from the last place we stayed (GR Caribe) greatly where everything was included except lobster. When we booked the website said domestic and premium drinks were included. This was not the case. When my husband asked for a Crown and Coke he was told it cost an extra $15 for the premium drink wristband per day. The rooms were just O.K. and the fridge was never restocked with pop. We were only given 2 water bottles a day for the three of us and had to call the desk for extra. Our room and balcony faced a fence. The desk staff was great! The concierge however soured the whole stay. I asked for directions to the Expedia rep so I could book my shuttle back to the airport. The concierge tried to sweep us into his desk area and told us we needed to sit down so he could tell us about the hotel. As we were already late to meet 2 other couples at the Cozumel ferry, I tried to explain we only needed to book our shuttle tickets, he semi flipped out and told me he would no longer speak to me as I had a bad attitude. My husband told him he wouldn’t have him speak to his wife that way and that he needed to apologize. He said, “ I will not apologize, look at her face she has a bad attitude and doesn’t need our help” In a very mocking and sarcastic manner. My husband asked to speak to his boss and he said, “I am the boss” I talked to the desk staff and the manager and they did assure me they would deal with it. After it was clear we were not interested in the timeshare demo we got almost no bell/taxi service until the night we left. We found the guests at the resort especially friendly and made friends with people from all over the world. The entertainment staff was also a pleasure. Overall it was not a terrible resort but after staying at the GR Caribe in May, I guess we were spoiled and expected a lot better. I would not go back.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
Thank you for sharing your review on Tripadvisor.

We really appreciate your nice comments about the natural surroundings in the hotel, our friendly staff and quality of food at the buffet Restaurant.

As you mentioned we offer some menus that are included in the all inclusive package and some other menus that are not, in order to offer more choices to our guests that are willing to upgrade our All Inclusive with some luxurious experiences, such as lobster and Filet Mignon.
Premium drinks are not included in the standard All Inclusive Package. For those who want to have access to premium drinks we offer the upgrade to Superior Premium Room or the wristband. The mini fridge is stocked only the first day of the stay for standard rooms. All this information is mentioned on our web site. We apologize for the misunderstanding.

We also would like to apologize for not replacing a third bottle of water during your stay.

Regarding the Vacation Club team, they are supposed to have a soft approach to our guests keeping good manners and be friendly as should all the employees at this hotel. We will share your comments about the argument you experienced with the Time Share team so they can make an appropriate follow up on this.

Thank you for your time. We look forward to welcoming you again.
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minneapolis
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2011

Upgraded our room and our fridge was never filled. Charged for the safe on check out, but they removed the charge. When I told them I didn't want to pay for the upgrade, $30 per day, because we didn't get the whole package there was conveniently no one to remove the charges. They will have to ask their staff if they filled the fridge because they were never in our room! Nice resort, food was not the best, Very boring at night. Walk into Playa, taxi back. we have been to at least 10 resorts in the area and this one would not be on the top of my list. Beautiful beach!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
ReefPlayacarResort, Manager at Reef Playacar, responded to this review, September 28, 2011
Thank you for sharing your opinion on Tripadvisor. We would like to express our regrets for your experience regarding the upgrade to Superior room. We would like to ask you to contact us personally in order to resolve what might have been an inconvenience for you. We look forward to hearing from you. Regards,
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Additional Information about Reef Playacar

Address: Paseo Xaman-Ha, Ret. Sayil s/n | Fracc. Playacar, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#44 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#46 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#62 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#64 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#85 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Reef Playacar 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This boutique style all-inclusive resort is located on a beautiful white sandy beach just steps away from the famous 5th avenue in Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, Mexico. The hotel offers all food, domestic drinks and a variety of international drinks included, 1 buffet restaurant, 2 a la carte restaurants, Italian & Gourmet($), snack bar, ice cream parlor, various bars including a swim up bar, 2 pools, kids club, daily activities & nightly entertainment. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Reef Playacar Hotel Playa Del Carmen
The Reef Playacar
Reef Club Playacar
Reef Playacar Mexico
Reef Playacar Playa Del Carmen
Reef Playacar Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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