We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A Wonderful First Experience in a Resort!! Exceeded expectations!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Reef Playacar

Best prices for -
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 7 more sites!
Save
You added Reef Playacar to your Saves list
Reef Playacar
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Paseo Xaman-Ha, Ret. Sayil s/n | Fracc. Playacar, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico   |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
Hotel deals
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Package Deal
Ranked #104 of 201 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Austin, Texas, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“A Wonderful First Experience in a Resort!! Exceeded expectations!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed at The Reef from 10/10 -10/14/2013. It was the most amazing time!! We got a Living Social Coupon for an excellent discount. Because of the cheap rate we were a little worried, but it was worth every penny and more! I couldnt have asked for a better trip! Not one person ever approached us about time shares. We were also just a 10 min ride to downtown. We met a very nice couple from Seattle the first night, and really enjoyed having another couple to pal around with:)
First Id like to mention the staff - Everyone was friendly, and attentive. A special thanks to Gilberto, Oliver, Willy, Paulina, and Alex for making us feel right at home. It seemed like everyone works non stop to keep the resort looking beautiful.
We upgraded to a superior room, which was unneccessary. We would have been fine in a standard room. But it did get us in the building right next to the pool (BLG 8), robes for the trip, a safe (which made us feel better)and free entry to the ala carte restaraunts,and we had a balcony view of the gardens from our room which was beautiful.
The Beach - The beach was hands down the most beautiful place we could imagine. We visited another resort during our stay for a wedding, and the water there was dark and very rocky. The sand at The Reef is white, and water is crystal clear! We got a covered cabana with no problem every day.
We also did an excursion one day that we planned through the hotel. It was also worth every cent! This excursion cost us extra, but we went kayaking, and boogie boarding for free at the Reef.
The Food - I will say that my only disappointment was the buffet food. It was pretty bland and lacked alot in variety. We ended up only eating fresh fruit and bacon at breakfast. And the buffets for each meal were the same everyday. At lunch and dinner, they didnt even have tortillas, which I thought was weird in Mexico??.. But, the Italian grill was excellent, and the ice cream parlor, and grill by the pool are really good too. We never got a chance to try Terraza Grill, but I heard it was super!
I would definitely recommend The Reef to anyone, and cant wait to come back again!!! We got lucky and had perfect weather. We will see if we can get that lucky when we return next year!

Room Tip: Room Tip - We were in room 824 - It was a perfect local! Beautiful view from patio, and the beach, g...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 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
    • 4 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.
Write a Review

2,273 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    676
    862
    354
    219
    162
See reviews for
504
864
37
11
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 (318)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Windsor, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2013

Just returned from our second visit this year and 10th overall to this resort. As always the vacation was exceptional thanks in large part to Vita the hotel manager and Roberta the Guest services agent at the hotel. These two will go out of their way to make sure everything is to your satisfaction. You can't say enough about the beach, the cleanliness of the resort or the staff as a whole. We do expect to go again in the not too distant future as we miss it already and we have only been home less than 20 hours. If travelling to this area, this resort deserves a chance to serve you as well as they have served us. Hope the hotel reads this as they have earned this review and should take pride in the job they are doing. See you all again soon.

Room Tip: Pick a room facing the gardens rather than toward the perimeter of the property.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stone Mountain, Georgia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

I first went to the Reef for my Honeymoon as we just bought our first house, paid for our wedding, and just needed an affordable get away. We loved it. It was Oct of 2012, so off season and several of the extra amenities were not available (2 of the restaurants were not open). But still had a great time, great location, fun atmosphere and just what we needed. I enjoyed the fact it was small and cozy and we were very comfortable. PLEASE NOTE: There was a hurricane while we were there, and stock up if that happens to you, as it is not legal to sell or serve beer if you are in a danger zone. (Nothing worse than being stuck in your room on vacation and not have a cold one).

In early September I decided to take my mother on her 1st International vacation and since it was just the 2 of us ladies, I like the idea that I knew the area a bit, and knew she would love the small and relaxed atmosphere of the Reef. This trip was perfect!

Not only did she love the décor and service of the place, but the full amenities (all restaurants & Bars were open) but she was comfortable going to the bar or beach with or without me. The ice cream parlor had fantastic ice cream and we enjoyed all restaurants and services. I even have a picture of my mom learning how to meringue with some of the staff!

The rooms are very comfortable, and as another trip advisor had advised, we took $2 bills to tip the staff and they enjoyed that!! (not necessary to tip extra, but being in the service industry you learn, the extras really count).

I look forward to going back to Reef again and Hope they keep the same Great Staff!!

Room Tip: I requested a low floor for my mother and was given without ask. Both times I have been on a low fl...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Piscataway, New Jersey
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

I don't even know where to start. We stayed from October 5-12 2013. We had such an amazing time and so glad that we stayed at The Reef. Every one of the staff are amazing especially Mary, Felix, Christian, Zania, Nayeli (probably spelled that wrong), Manuel, Oliver, Irving and the list just goes on and on. They made us feel like family and a few hugged us as we left. I love the rain forest atmosphere of the grounds. The food was great! The beach was amazing!! We made so many new friends and are already planning next years trip to stay there and will stay longer. It was an excellent price and a wonderful stay. I will recommend all of my family and friends to stay here!!

Room Tip: Rooms facing the garden are amazing. The view is great from the balcony.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kansas City,MO
2 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

Next Saturday, my wife and I are looking forward to our 6th visit in 8 years! We love The Reef so much we will continue to visit for many more years to come. For repeat visitors, they give you many extra amenities and services that keep us coming back. The beach is absolutely awesome. With The Reef being a smaller resort, you don't have a lot of people to deal with and it's never over-crowded. 2 pools and 1 has a swim up bar. Food is great and the people are really friendly. At the pool and beach, you have plenty of chairs for everyone. Don't you hate how you have to claim a chair at 8 in the morning at some resorts? Not at The Reef! They have plenty to go around. I could talk all day about how a great value The Reef is. For the money, this is the best deal in Playa.
We will keep coming back!

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, IN
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

It’s taken me a little while to write this review party due to the fact there was an issue upon checkout that really ticked me off and I had to shake it off first in order to give a fair review, and partly because writing reviews seems like a daunting task to me, so here goes!

Stayed from 9/20 - 9/27

Check In: Fast, but we always travel during low season. Friendly. Did receive a map that needs to be updated as Nico’s bar is not listed.

Resort Layout: I love the layout of this resort and the fact that it’s small. We go off property a lot and do a lot of walking around Playa, so it’s nice to have a small resort that is easy to navigate while there. It has a very tropical atmosphere, which I love.

Rooms: I loved our room, the hubby thought it a bit sparse. We both loved the bed! Some say the beds in Mexico are hard, but we must love that because we've never had a bad bed. All of the linens were of good quality and nothing was worn, including the towels. The bathrooms could use an upgrade I suppose. Didn’t bother me, but caulking was cracked and worn. Only issue here was it was a large drop to step out of the shower, which was odd, and the first time we almost slipped. After that we were more careful. Water pressure was very low, but water was always very hot and plenty of it.

Buffet: The buffet was excellent, as long as your expectations are in check. I didn’t find it to be better or worse than buffets at Dreams, Barcelo, or Secrets. We tried the buffet for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with breakfast being the best, as you would expect. Oh, and they did advertise an al-a-cart breakfast at Botticelli's but we never tried it out.

Grill: The pool grill was surprisingly very good. Especially considering what we paid. You always have to consider what you paid. Hubby loved the grill at Secrets much better, but we also paid twice as much for Secrets than Reef. I thought the grill was more than adequate. I’m a guacamole snob, and it was almost as good as mine. Only tried guac, fries, and burger, all were good to great.

Botticelli: This restaurant could have been a bit better. They serve you bruschetta as an appetizer, and it’s the best I’ve ever had. The main dishes fall short a bit. I ordered a ravioli dish, which was good, seemed of high quality, but had a taste that was different than what I’ve ever experienced. The hubby ordered the Alfredo, which I thought was great and I’m an Alfredo snob, but it was just pasta and sauce, so I thought it could have used chicken or spinach for some color or something. The hubby ended up mixing both our pastas together, and that was good. LOL! Service was a bit slow. Also, there’s an extra charge for premium cuts of steak and lobster in both al-a-cart restaurants. The house wine is a matter of opinion. I’d say it’s equivalent to about a $5 or $6 bottle you’d get from your local grocery store. Some people can’t drink that stuff, I can if properly chilled. One night it was slightly chilled, just perfect, the next night it was warm and definitely undrinkable.

Terazza: The first night I ordered the coconut shrimp. It was the absolute best coconut shrimp I’ve ever had. And I had coconut shrimp all over Playa, as well as Cozumel, and Terraza wins on this one! It was phenomenal. I don’t think it had any breading on it, I love it like that, just some toasted coconut in a coconut cream sauce. It was great. Runner up was Rasta’s on Cozumel for $16. The second night at this restaurant the hubby upgraded to the Ribeye for $20, which is too much money to ask for in my opinion and it was over cooked. My steak, the filet that was on the menu, was also over cooked. We both ordered them medium, and they were both well done. Bummer.

Theatre: We saw the Street Dance show and the Michael Jackson show. They were both fantastic, especially the Michael Jackson show. I am such a sucker for choreographed dance! This guy really looked a lot more like MJ than even the impersonators I’ve seen in Vegas for $75 a pop!

Bars: Lobby bar is great, nice atmosphere, friendly service. Bar Papo’s, up by the theater is a great little spot, there is a beach bar by the grill with seats nearby, and it’s a great little asset. Never used the pool bar, but we LOVED, LOVED, LOVED Nico’s!!! This place was heaven! We were normally the only one’s there, maybe because of low season, but the bartenders were GREAT! And Soheila really kept an eye on those young boys running the bar and they all provided top notch service. I think their names were Herlindo and Gerardo. We REALLY had a ball hanging out there!

Beach: Fantastic! Walk for miles, soft sand, warm water. Never used any of the kayaks or hobie cats though. Bummer.

Overall, we LOVED the Reef. I would recommend it highly and I would go back in a heartbeat. When considering overall value for price paid, the Reef really shines!
However, whoever was running the front desk when we checked out really ticked me off. We had a 20% discount for massages at the spa. This is a coupon that is attached to the map that the hotel gives you upon check in. Because I didn’t present this coupon to the spa at the time of my massage, they refused to honor it upon checkout. Okay, but here’s the kicker. I asked the guy TWICE if my discount was on there and TWICE he said “yes”. It wasn’t until I did the pesos to dollars conversion that I realized it wasn’t. When I brought it back to him it turned into an exchange of him making phone calls, bringing the spa manager to the front desk, I don’t know, it was a bunch of confusion just because I asked them to honor the coupon THEY gave me. What’s the big deal that I didn’t physically hand it to the ladies in the spa? I still have the coupon, I still paid for a $100 massage, I still tipped a LOT to EVERYONE that served us, I still never complained about my overcooked, overpriced steak, and yet I’m not worthy of my $20 discount. Whatever! I don’t know why, but that just made me so mad. I guess because I felt like they thought I was trying to get one over on them, when they are really getting one over on me.

Couple of other mentions: The coffee there is the best ever, a wonderfully rich flavor. The specialty coffees set up by the cenotes from 4 – 6 are delicious. The ice cream at the ice cream parlor is great. Oh, and one more complaint too before I close out. We paid for the Superior Premium upgrade and one of the “perks” is a free safe. They give you a lock that goes into your safe, okay fine, but then they tell you if you lose the lock or key they will charge you $100!! Really Reef? $100 dollars? So now I get to stress about that stupid thing all week!! Thanks a lot! But other than that, overall, I LOVE THE REEF!!!

Room Tip: Forgot to mention that the A/C unit in the room worked wonderfully. On the things that really count...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beltsville, Maryland
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2013

My wife and I came to the Reef for 4 nights and we had an amazing time! All we did was relax by the pool and the beach. They probably have the most beach beds of any resort in Playacar. We didn't have to wake up early to claim a spot - there was always a beach bed available and plenty of very comfortable beach chairs. They keep the whole place very clean. There's a main stone walk-way that weaves through the center of the resort, and it's like walking through a beautiful jungle with lots of trees, waterfalls, and ground cover. And staff regularly cleaned the walk-way and pruned the gardens; it looked like Disney World. We were treated well by all the resort employees. They were very helpful and treated us like VIP guests. The food is great and there are lots of options. They had lots of bottled water (don't drink the tap water) and bottles of hand sanitizer in all public places that anyone could use. The room was cool with a nice, quiet AC unit. The only downsides were that they had a long check-in line and that they didn't have enough bar or wait staff to regularly fill up drinks at the buffet, but you could also walk up to the bar or fill station to get your own drinks at any point. We highly recommend Reef Playacar to any couple or even family.

Room Tip: Be sure to specify one king bed vs two doubles if that's what you're expecting; don't as...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 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
    • 4 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.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Price Your Stay

Been to Reef Playacar? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

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:
#43 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#49 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#61 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#64 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#84 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Reef Playacar 3.5*
Number of rooms: 200
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 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Travelocity, Despegar.com, BookIt.com, Expedia, Agoda, Odigeo, TripOnline SA and Tingo so you can book your Reef Playacar reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
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

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Reef Playacar, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.