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“Not Enough Superlatives” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Playa Maya

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Playa Maya
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Playa del Carmen, Q Roo 77710, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #22 of 201 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Sacramento, California
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Not Enough Superlatives”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2012

After many years of vacations on the (quite beautiful) resorts that dot the Riviera Maya, we decided to break out this year and vacation on our own terms. A lucky reservation cancellation landed us a room (two different rooms, actually - we changed rooms midweek by choice) at the Playa Maya during the week of February 17. Who knew that we had secured a reservation at what is undoubtedly one of the finest (and very likely the finest small) hotel in Playa del Carmen?!!

My husband and I have agreed that the week we spent in Playa del Carmen was the best vacation that we have had in the 15 years we have been together - and our stay at the Playa Maya absolutely played a major part in our experience.

A staff that caters to their guests generally defines the quality of a hotel stay, and there are simply not enough superlatives to describe all of the staff that served our every want and need while we stayed. They are generous with their time and attention, and cheerful and gregarious with their interactions with their guests. If you stay, you will immediately recognize the following: "FrontDesk" Pedro, Julianna, Maria, "Bar Pedro," Rasael, Carla, Carlos, the "Juans"... The cleaning staff is marvelously efficient; the beach crew is every bit attentive as everyone else.

This is a small hotel, and it felt like home. We stayed in the Jacuzzi Garden room and in a Deluxe Balcony with Hammock room - and the accommodations were completely satisfying. We feel quite sure that we could have stayed in any of the rooms at the hotel and have been equally pleased. We met many wonderful people on the beach, hopefully linking to long-term relationships. As others have noted, the breakfast that is part of the lodging fee is more than sufficient. Both breakfast and lunch menus are extensive - and the food is great! And the drinks that they serve up are no "resort" watered-down beverages, either.

We also tip our hat to Stephen Ryeberg who has put together such a wonderful staff - and who was also so attentive to all of the emails I sent, answering all of my questions and making suggestions in an amazingly quick response-time.

  • Stayed February 2012, 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.
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538 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (73)
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English first
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2012

The staff are really friendly and helpful. This is our first time at playa Maya and definitely will come back again.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Calgary, Alberta
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2012

This was our first time going non-AI in this area, and we thoroughly enjoyed it. We stayed for 11 nights in February 2012. Playa Maya is in a fantastic location, and it had a nice home-away-from-home feel to it. Noise was never a problem. I was worried about this, given the central location. I am a light sleeper, and I could hear some bass from Fusion during the night, but it was not enough to keep me awake. We were right close to all the action on 5th Ave and never had to walk far to find a great restaurant, or even just to pick up a mid-day gelato. There was a security guard who would ask for our room number each evening when we returned to the hotel from dinner. Cleanliness was excellent. The staff were all very pleasant. At the beach, Juan, Jesus and Lucio were attentive and pleasant at all times. Juan would even notice when I was trying to adjust my lounger, and would come and lend a hand! At the same time, they were never intrusive. We visited Mamita’s beach club and Wicky’s, but we liked the staff best at Playa Maya, and found the loungers more comfortable too. Food was very reasonably priced, in my opinion. Beer was $20 pesos (cheaper than water). Cocktails varied, but were very large and ones I tried were in the $60 to $70 pesos range. Some of the items we enjoyed included mango margaritas, pina coladas, coconut shrimp, chicken tacos, nachos, guac and chips with fresh pico de gallo, chicken strips and fries (for our daughter). Hamburgers were average. There is a small pool, which was never busy. I personally prefer the beach, but our daughter also liked the pool. It is 4 feet deep at the deepest end, so enough for her to swim in a bit. There was also a sitting area above the pool. There was usually someone at the front desk, and they were all willing to help with any questions we had; Pablo even walked with us to the store where we bought a phone card that didn’t work, to help us get a refund. Each morning there was a pot of coffee at the front desk and a bowl of packaged granola bars and/or cookies for guests to take. There are umbrellas for guest use too – something we found out after buying one for $15 US!

Throughout the booking process, and my many questions! Stephen was very quick at responding.

We stayed in room 304, a “Superior Ocean View” for most of our visit, and then in room 105, a “Jacuzzi Garden” room. I will give a bit of a comparison of the rooms:

Superior Ocean View had a small balcony with two chairs and a nice ocean view. We made use of the small coffee pot and mini fridge, which was always stocked with water. There was plenty of space in the room. The bathroom was nice – a bit small, but with a large shower – never a problem with water temperature, though the pressure was poor (we often find this in Mexico). Air conditioning was excellent. I would definitely stay in this room type again. The view was just like the photos on the website.

Jacuzzi Garden was large and lovely. The outdoor area is very nice, completely private with a fabulous large Jacuzzi tub surrounded by white curtains and a little bistro table and chairs. This would be a wonderful honeymoon suite. Due to the privacy of the room, however, you cannot see outside at all. For our purposes, we preferred the Ocean View room overall, because we liked having the ocean view.

What we liked the most, overall:
1) The beautiful beach!! And we never had a problem getting loungers, even if we slept in.
2) The delicious breakfast! My favourite choice was waffles with bacon, fresh tropical fruit, juice and coffee. We loved having our toes in the sand and watching the waves while having a leisurely breakfast.
3) The staff, including Stephen during the booking process.

The only negative I can think of is that beach towels were not available until about 9:30 or 10 a.m., so if you are an early riser this may be a nuisance.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cherry Hill, NJ
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2012

This was our third time staying at Playa Maya, our fifth time beaching there. It is all it says. The guests are down to earth, not fancy. The hotel is clean. The staff could not do more. The cleaning service was in our room as we left for the beach, I came back half an hour later and she was still cleaning. There was nothing to clean! The food is the best, never leave the beach for lunch elsewhere. They don't even bug you to drink, but they are always there when you need them. There is a reason they have repeat guests. Juliana and Maria and Pablo could not be more helpful. There is nothing to do but relax, my kind of vacation.

Room Tip: top floor best view
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  • Stayed February 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
US
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2012

My wife and I, along with our daughter and her husband just returned yesterday from a week long stay at Playa Maya. To begin with, the entire booking process, and personal emails from manager Stephen Ryberg, was excellent. We had a small mixup with our reservations regarding rooms, but Stephen made it right for us and all turned out well. The staff of Playa were outstanding and the rooms (we had room 301) were kept spotless. We unfortunately had our room air conditioner die the second day of our stay and the hotel had it replaced on the same day. Our included morning breakfasts were outstanding and my wife and I ate lunch 5 of the 7 days at Playa and found the meals to be a good value and very filling. As is often mentioned here, the fish tacos and coconut shrimp were excellent, but I think my favorite was their caribbean fish plate. The weather during our week was nice for the most part, with spotty rain in the evenings and a persistent wind on the beach which admittedly wore us down by weeks' end. My only complaint (almost embarrassed to admit) was that the pillows were lumpy (although with 5 on the king sized bed I found one that was acceptable). I can recommend Playa Maya and would return again.

Room Tip: Our room 301 was nice, but I think 302 would probably have the best view of the ocean. Our daughter...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2012

i have not been to playa maya in playa del carmen but i have been impressed by the ratings. however, my attempts to get information from this alleged hotel have been totally disappointing and i would not encourage anyone to go there. their web page lists rates only through july. do you know anyone who wants to go to cancun in july? i called three times and asked what the room rates were for november and december. i got someone each time who did not speak english and could not answer one question. not one. my advice is go elsewhere. this is a broken down operation.

Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PlayaMaya, Public Relations Manager at Playa Maya, responded to this review, February 4, 2012
We are sorry to hear of your negative reaction and sent you a private message via this site immediately after seeing your comments, asking for further information as to the name under which you contacted us or the email address you used for that contact. This is so that we can look into the situation for you and see if perhaps our responses to you have been returned as undeliverable or perhaps have not been returned to us but have been kept from your view by spam filters on your end or the like. This is not uncommon.

That is to say, if in fact you did attempt to email us. We do not handle bookings by phone, but as indicated in other comments here, all our receptionists speak English. They would not have been able to quote you rates or other such related information for a period for which we have not yet published rates on our site, but we certainly could have proceeded with you via email, as we have been doing for a number of other guests who have submitted requests via the system on our site or who have emailed us directly. Of course we understand that some people may prefer doing these things by phone, but we prefer to stick with the clarity of the communication and links and photos and so forth that written communication via email provides.

And actually, quite a number of people like to visit this region in July, although note that we are in Playa del Carmen rather than Cancun. Perhaps you have us confused with someone else? As you yourself note right off, you have never been here, and it would certainly not be the first time someone had mixed us up with another property, as many may have similar components in their names. This (or for that matter, an incorrect phone number) could also explain why you are not getting English speakers answering the phone.

Well hopefully this will help and hopefully you'll respond to our private message so that we may rectify this situation!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gamerco, New Mexico
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
81 helpful votes 81 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2012

Very friendly small hotel located right on the beach. Felt like coming home! Clean, modern, safe, secure, very friendly, right in the heart of Playa, and very quiet - which was a concern of mine as i knew there are the all-night boom-boom clubs in the area. Minimal noise - i slept with the sliding door open, could hear the waves all night, and smell the coffee in the morning!
Everything from making the reservation to checking out was effortless. Great full breakfasts are included - restaurant right on the beach. I met many long-term Playa vacationers that come spend the day here at the beach renting chairs (as opposed to other hotels or a beach club) - they said it was very friendly, knew the staff, and they come for the food as the restaurant is excellent.
Hotel is located off 8th St North, nestled in with many other hotels big and small. Just 4 blocks from the ADO bus from the airport - no need for cab. Bustling 5th Ave is just up the street, with many excellent restaurants very close by. The entire area is very walkable.
I ventured out deeper into town for more local diners (better prices). On different nights of the week different clubs have a band and thats 'the place to be' for happy hour/dancing/meeting others. I went as a single (50 y.o.) and had no problem meeting people and feeling very safe. Many of these clubs were right down the beach, so close to 'home' when the night was over.
There are a lot of small hotels in town. The advantage of Playa Maya is that you're right on the beach - no need to put on shoes for most of the day, availability for great restaurant/snacks/refreshments with consistently friendly service, and are assured a beach chair and great service!
Playa in general has really developed and is getting more pricey and sophisticated, with North Americans owning homes/condos, and many europeans opening up small inns and cafes - you can find most any activity/sport/yoga/health food, etc etc.
For food, I tried to keep it local but found a great variety of choices - if you head off the tourist area, you can find great meals and get back into the ole'Mexico budget.
Restaurants - these were recommended by others and I found consistently excellent food:
Mexican - Carboncitos, just off 5th ave on 4th St - tortilla soup is a meal in itself
Fogans - more local, on calle 20 just before 30th ave - great food = lots of tourists+locals
Italian - Titi Panini - calle 10, b/w 10th and 15th ave; excellent healthy salad bar, wonderful owners.
Thai - Babe's Noodles - calle 10 b/w 5th and 10th ave; half orders available also
el Diez ("10") - Argentinian (after their Soccer player #10) - steaks, seafood, grilled veg's, great pizza - right on 5th ave and calle 26.
Thank you Playa Maya!!

Room Tip: I liked my room with an ocean view - very nice, and i got a good breeze all day long.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Playa Maya

Address: Playa del Carmen, Q Roo 77710, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#9 Best Value Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#20 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#21 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Playa Maya, a boutique hotel opened in mid-2002, is located right on the beach in Playa del Carmen and just a block from 5th Avenue, the heart of activity here. Secluded location makes it a very tranquil property, providing the perfect base for exploring the nightlife of Playa and the wonders of the Mexican Caribbean, including a wealth of scuba diving, snorkeling and fishing activities, archaeological ruins of the ancient Maya at Tulum, Coba and Chichen Itza, the eco-parks Tres Rios, Xcaret and Xel-Ha, and Cozumel island and the facilities and attractions of Cancun, under an hour away by ferry and by car, respectively. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Playa Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Playa Maya Del Carmen
Playa Maya Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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