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“Beautiful, small hotel on gorgeous swimming beach” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Petit Lafitte

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Petit Lafitte
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   Carretera Cancun - Chetumal km 296 + 2.1 | Xcalacoco, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #14 of 200 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence 2014
New York
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“Beautiful, small hotel on gorgeous swimming beach”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2011

PL is a small quiet hotel right on the beach. Plenty of lounge chairs on the beautiful beach with excellent swimming. Our beachfront room was only a few steps from the beach, no room is more than maybe 100 yards from the beach. It was not luxurious but spacious and fine with a small refrigerator and good shower. They also have a nice pool. The food (breakfast and dinner included) was good but not great. It was prepared fresh, no chafing dishes reheating food like at big resorts. The dining room is an open air pavilion. Lunch was available at tables overlooking the beach. Our room was near the small bar by the beach which was empty by 10:00 so no problem with noise at night. Service throughout the hotel is excellent and personal. Its a 10 minute drive to the town, a place that is swarming with shops and tourists. We rented a car in Cancun and drove to the hotel, an easy 45 minute drive. There was not much to do at the hotel other than it being an excellent place to relax and walk along the miles of beach There are places down the beach which offer the usual beach diversions.We used the car to drive into Playa del Carmen and Puerto Morelos, and for excursions to Chichen Itza (a 3 hour drive), and the ferries to Isla Mujeres and Cozumel, so on alternate days we relaxed at the hotel or did some excursion. There were several families there with small children who played very nicely without disturbing the adult guests. All in all the hotel is an excellent choice.

  • Stayed March 2011, 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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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (258)
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Buenos Aires
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2011

I went for my 10th anniversary with my wife and chose the hotel basen on the reviews on Tripadvisor. In conclusion, the reviews are waht you get. The hotel is small, very clean, the service is really great and the room, even though not great, are fine. We stayed on a beach front bungalow. The room location was absolutely great, jsut in front of the beach. The room was clean and nice. A couple of drawbacks of the room: a little lack of privacy with the curtains open (the room is too near the beach), the room is very very dark ( i suggest them to put some white colour either on the walls or in the bed, it would definetely improve the room). Overall: we had a great time and partially because of the hotel. We recommend it.

Room Tip: Oceanfront Bungalow, get number 9 not number 1.
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  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Jersey City, NJ
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2011

My boyfriend and I just returned from a week long stay at Petit Lafitte. We stayed in an ocean view room and woke up to an amazing view of the beach. The staff is incredibly helpful and dedicated to great service. There were several families and couples staying at the hotel. The food is good -- though I would prefer more traditional Mexican dishes on the lunch and dinner menu. The beach is quiet and very clean. There is a popular swimming spot only 100 yds away. I cannot wait to return!

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Brooklyn, New York
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2011

Petit Lafitte, the successor to Posada del Capitan Lafitte, retains the laid back simplicity of it's predecessor. Even though the area's changed radically since my wife and I first visited there 22 years ago (Playa del Carmen was a tiny village, now it's a city of 50,000 plus), the beach is still magnificent and the owners have managed to insulate guests from the hubbub of the large hotels in the area. Dressing for dinner means putting on a shirt, and everyone is friendly. Staff is fantastic, and, as a testament to the owners, many staffers have been around for years (David the manager was the bartender in the 90's). The newly built rooms are great, and everything is clean and elegant, without being stuffy or pretentious at all. Foodnis good and plentiful Love it, just the way we did years ago.

Room Tip: Unless you need a tv, get one off the bungalows
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  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, Texas
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2011

My wife and I experienced Mexico Playa Del Carmen for the very first time. After browsing Trip Advisor we stumble on the Petit Lafitte. The great reviews and the quietness was what we were looking for…

I can tell you that you will not be disappointed. We stayed in a ocean view bungalow. It was nice, clean and cozy. Loved the fact that there were no televisions. Reading and relaxation is what you get. It’s quiet and small enough that you are overwhelmed by too many patrons. There are ample chairs at the beach and enough distances between Le Petit Lafitte and those monstrous resorts.

The staff is superb, I give them A+… David, Javier, Geovanni, Jesus and the other 2 I cannot remember their names will bend backward to insure your every request I met. They made me a special dinner meal on my last night because I don’t eat seafood’s.

I will definitely return there and hope to see the same staff. David speaks 7 or 8 different language. English, French, Spanish, Dutch, Mayan. I can go on and on. The night meals were very diverse and never repeated themselves in the 6 days we were there.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2011

I stayed a week at Petit Lafitte for the first time at the end of February/beginning of March. Having been to a several all-inclusive resorts by now, I wanted to be in the Mayan Riviera with it's draws (great weather, the carribean sea, white sand, easy access from Toronto) but not the other elements found at the mega resorts (crowds, line-ups, excessive menu choices, low-quality beverages, noise.) I'd looked to TripAdvisor for recs for a winter holiday and reviews were consistent and in-line with what I was looking for. The PL seemed like an ideal option. This would be the first time not doing an AI vacation so there would be a bit more organizing to be done (researching flights, transfers, etc) but it turned out to be not much effort at all.

My experience was spot-on with most reported here. ALL service personnel were friendly, attentive and kind people. Accommodations were charming, clean and there was definitely nothing lacking. We stayed in a gardenview bungalow and it was really quiet. The breakfasts and dinners were absolutely delicious and thoughtfully prepared and presented – over the seven nights of dinners I did not see a single salad repeated amongst the generous variety served. Mexican night was my favorite. Lunch (not included in the room rate but reasonable) was a pleasant experience given the quality of the food, drink and beachfront setting.

There’s a modest pool and beachfront with plenty of loungers for everyone, so no jockeying for space or planning your day around getting a towel down early enough in the morning. That said getting up to watch the sunrise made for one of the best parts of the day sitting on the beach deck enjoying coffee with fellow early birds. The other guests were friendly and chilled-out, whether they’d been coming here for twenty years or new visitors. Seniors, couples, and young families with children all were part of the gang.

Other info that may be worth repeating:
Walking along the beach to Playa del Carmen in the early morning (taking about an hour and half) made for a great self-made excursion. Interesting to pass the massive property developments along the way as well as what's left of undeveloped tracts of beachfront.

Cab rides back from PdC weren't complicated as most taxi drivers know where the hotel is, and if not would know the Princess resort which is the same turn off the highway. Rates are fixed.

Didn’t make it to the zoo until the last day and should have gone sooner.

The true value of the Petit Lafitte is its simplicity. Whether you were in the three-storey building or one of the bungalows the beach was no further than a minute away. There is not much to do here other than to rest, relax, and restore. With no TV and noise at night bedtime was usually by 9pm and lots of people were out at the beach for sunrise. Nine to ten hour sleeps... This is on top of the siestas after a full day at the playa before dinner.

Looking forward to seeing our new friends next year at this gem.

  • Stayed February 2011, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2011

We just returned from the most enjoyable and relaxing family vacation at Petit Lafitte. We stayed from March 7-14th in an ocean view room (2 adults, one toddler). We rented a car (not really necessary) and the drive was quite simple. The welcoming staff was very kind. David is so clearly skilled at making guests feel at home. More than half of the staff we encountered had been there for about 20+ years and they all made efforts to know our name and remember our room number.
Our room was immaculate and they supplied us with a great pack n’ play for our son. Our view was breathtaking and completely private. We were in room 405 across from the bar, but never heard any noise. In fact, the bar was empty after 9 or so.

This place is amazing for children. We really lucked out, though. There were three other amazing families with children that arrived around the same time. This made our trip truly memorable! This is such a small place that you generally you generally get to know (or at least recognize) most of the people who were staying there.
The breakfasts were wonderful: amazing fresh oj and great Mexican cuisine. Coffee left a bit to be desired, so I was happy that I brought strong coffee from home. In fact, some of my best memories are on our gorgeous porch, drinking coffee and watching the sunrise with my youngster.
Lunches were by far the best. You do have to discipline yourself to not fill up on the homemade tortilla chips with garlic sauce and pico de gallo, though! The waiter, Javier, was so lovely that he made the dining experience even more memorable. The single cook who works his tail off behind the bar at lunch deserves a shout out, too.
The dinners were good, but hectic with small children—it started at 7 and most of the kids were exhausted by then, so we mostly rushed through them and chased after children. The Mexican buffet on Sunday night was the best. Word has it that they will make accommodations for you if you want to have dinner in your room. We never tried it, but I always felt that they would do their best to accommodate for most reasonable requests.
The bartenders were incredible (Jesus, Victorio). Most of the waiters were outstanding (Giovanney and Jesus were also especially wonderful). The only minor complaint: there were a couple of waiters that were massive downers (sometimes bordering on dismissive/ neglectful). In their defense, they warmed up by the end of our stay--even played around with our son, but we worked hard to earn their approval! Despite my years of experience with restaurant Spanish ☺ I am far from fluent, so I imagine that some of the resistance stemmed from a general annoyance of our sad command.
The zoo was a huge hit. We visited the toucan and parrots at least twice a day. Be sure to bring bug spray for those excursions—we were devoured on our first zoo adventure.
And get a massage! Berta was great. I scheduled mine when there was a small rainstorm. Heaven!
The general feeling we have now is one of a great longing to go back. And we will—hopefully next year! You are literally right on the most beautiful beach you can imagine. I want to nap in those hammocks again!

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Petit Lafitte

Address: Carretera Cancun - Chetumal km 296 + 2.1 | Xcalacoco, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Petit Lafitte 3*
Number of rooms: 50
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Petit Lafitte Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Petit Lafitte Playa Del Carmen
Petit Lafitte Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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