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“All We Hoped It Would Be And More” 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 199 hotels in Playa del Carmen
Fort Worth, Texas
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“All We Hoped It Would Be And More”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013

Wanted to take the time to write a review because we relied almost solely on TripAdvisor reviews when deciding where to stay in Playa Del Carmen. After reading dozens of reviews we decided Petite Lafitte was a perfect fit for us. We wanted somewhere to relax and enjoy the Mexican Caribbean and not have the big, over-crowded mega-resort experience. Lafitte is small, laid-back, and met our criteria perfectly. We had high expectations after all of the great reviews and we were not disappointed. The rooms are simple but more than adequate. We had a minor issue with our original room and were promptly upgraded to what seemed to me to be the best room at Lafitte (room 503, ask for it!). The food was excellent, including lunch from the bar/grill which is not included in the daily rate. The margaritas were quite simply the best I've had and being a Texas native that's saying a lot. Now about the staff...These reviews consistently sing the praises of the staff and I have to admit I've always been skeptical of the idea that a hotel staff can really add that much to a vacation experience, but I am skeptic no more! The staff at Lafitte are the most professional, warm, and attentive that I've ever encountered. They all know you by name within hours of your arrival and by the second day it feels like you are among friends. The employees seem genuinely happy to be there and we looked forward to seeing the breakfast wait-staff each morning, especially Antonio who always managed to have us laughing with his quirky sense of humor. (And we are not morning people so that's quite an accomplishment.) We met several other guests who have been returning to Petite Lafitte for 15+ years and after our stay we can certainly understand why. If you are looking for a big party resort with lots of entertainment this will not be the place for you but if you want to unwind and relax on a beautiful beach and enjoy amazing hospitality at a low-key, no frills hotel, you can't go wrong at Petite Lafitte. This place gets all of the important things right and we will definitely be returning.

Room Tip: I would recommend 2nd or 3rd floor in either building 5 or 6.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, April 2, 2013
Dear Ben D,

How delightful to read your review! You sound like an old friend already. One thing that sound great to us is that you found us on tripadvisor, and what you gathered about PL, while reading reviews (of a place you didn’t already know) was accurate, and you felt satisfied, and compelled to share your experience with others. Thank you very much for taking the time to write, the staff is very happy and motivated to continue providing personalized service with a sense of humor, without loosing the professional edge and efficiency. We are glad that you are a believer now!
Hopefully, your intentions of returning will be fulfilled in the future. Regardless, for now, we will indulge in the sweet sound of your commendations and will stay focused in creating that for our current guests..

Yours truly,

Iván A. Fuentes
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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 (224)
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3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2013

The rooms & settings are basic but the friendly staff, the bungalow, the beach, the beach bar, and the inclusive dinner & breakfast - all made our trip truly memorable. We would definitely go back there again.
If you like to relax on the beach or the poolside, petite lafitte will be your place but if you are looking for a party hut, it won't be for you.

  • Stayed February 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 30, 2013
Dear sjunko,

We want to thank you for choosing Petit Lafitte for your vacation in the Mexican Caribbean, we are pleased to hear that you liked it and that you appreciated those details we’ve built our reputation upon. We hope that, as you mention, someday, we get the pleasure of serving you again.
On behalf of all the staff

Iván A. Fuentes
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grass lake
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2013

Sometime back, I composed a rather lengthy review of P.L., contrasting a stay at this small seaside resort to staying at a 200 foot long, glass entranced, 5 themed pool, 15 all you can eat restaurant, golf cart transport, 80 acre un-small Mexican resort. I then proceeded to submit my review "grade circles" incorrectly, and ended up scoring a terrible review. Luckily there is a delete edit.
My wife and I are extremely excited about our return to Petit this winter. We prefer taking 3 steps out of the cab to a cheerful, sincere welcome from the same faces who will be your hosts and provide the highest level of service throughout your stay, over a 30 minute time share presentation. We prefer taking the 15 steps from our bungalow door to this clean, white sand, turquoise water beach paradise over descending 5 or 6 stairwells after a golf cart ride. We are completely satisfied with excellent food, ample choices. and a dessert selection somewhat smaller than the complete Sara Lee product line. We like waking up in the morning anytime we want to stroll down and relax at the resort size matched number of palapas, with our still clean 2 day old beach towel, over setting the alarm for 6:00 am to "reserve" a couple of beach chairs before someone else does. We might cool down in the guest register sized pool- yeah, it's possible there could be a few kids having fun with foam noodles during the noise courteous open pool hours, but we find this better than blaring loudspeakers, zumba classes, and wet t-shirt contests.
In summary, we are relatively inconspicuous, low maintenance guests, and I realize that no place can be all things to all people. With that said, I'm pretty sure the staff will graciously welcome and sincerely appreciate our return to P.L.. I feel strongly this is the reason Petit Lafitte enjoys (and does not take for granted) the attached, loyal "family" of vacationers that they do. I really don't know a thing about marketing, and it doesn't seem possible to blend certain words, but I find myself describing Petit as proudly humble. See you all in a week.
Sincerely, JP and CP

  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 27, 2013
Dear Jeff,

Certainly your review, the way and the time it was written (after a year) from your first stay at Lafitte and just a week before your “repeat” stay, makes it a very unique text.
We are so honored you decided to try us again, it seems to me that having experience two very different vacation styles, you have set your heart for a more personable, non-pretentious, quiet and friendly style. I mean, I always feel a bit cautious when writing a response that involves mentions of other (or bigger) resorts, I don’t mean to say anything negative about them. It’s just that we need to separate clearly the life-styles, ideas and expectations, that people have, as we are aware that P.L. is not for everyone.
Reviews like yours serve the hotel and the potential guests as well. It is rare to have somebody at Petit lafitte that missed his/her mark. So Thank you for that.

We appreciate your kind words of appreciation and the second “dance around” you decided to have with us.
Your use of an oxymoron to sign off your review sounded much like music to our ears, and we truly hope that you enjoyed your new vacation with us.

All the best

Iván A. Fuentes
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Pole
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2013

If this is what you're looking to do without the bells and whistles of the big resorts, then this is your place. Our family of four stayed for a week in late January and came away promising to return. As many others have commented, we can't say enough about the wonderful staff at Petit Lafitte. First class treatment and just plain nice people. I would mention them by name here, but I don't want to forget anyone. We stayed in a garden view bungalow - it was clean, comfortable and dead quiet at night. The beach is a great spot, not busy and good for kids to play. The food is fresh and good. Not a lot of choices for dinner, but they change the menu each night so you're not eating the same thing. Breakfast was great, lots of selection. The bar at the beach is a gem. Wifi was OK - not fast by any means, but adequate for the odd email or weather report. How much do you really want to be on the internet during your beach holiday anyway? Bottom line, this is a place that has refined simplicity down pat. If you want lots of action, day or night, this is not your best bet. If you want to wind down with some palm trees, beach and margaritas - and nothing else - then you've found the place.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 26, 2013
Dear BelgianBrew,

Nice an eloquent, you put down in just 17 lines, what guest can expect from us, and also demonstrated that there is enjoyment and peace in a vacation like this. The bells and whistles as you call them, will never be for us. In our humble opinion, people don’t get treated like that. (No offense to no one, like the saying goes…Different strokes…).
I would just like to comment about the idea of dinner variety. You see, having an a la carte dinner menu when we roughly serve 100 people a night, may require having large stocks and large assortments of meats, fish, poultry etcetera, we believe in freshness, we buy from the little places and try our best to get it fresh, we have, over the 40 years in business, perfected this operation, where what you get at your table will be top quality, tasty and fresh, big menus require freezing and we are against that. Sure, as with every rule, there are exceptions, but primarily we try to keep it to 2 options (on a two week rotation) in the main course department and when somebody has an allergy issue or has special dietary needs, we are accommodating, as long as we are given reasonable notice.
Thank you so much for all the very positive comments and for your promise of returning, we will be very happy to receive your family and provide you with another “Chill out time”

Yours truly

Iván Fuentes
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Pulborough, England, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2013

What we liked about the hotel:
Comfortable if simply furnished rooms on the beach
50 metre walk to the sea
Reasonably friendly staff
Reasonable but inconsistent food

What we did not like about the hotel
WiFi is poor
There is nothing else to do but sit on the beach and if it rains there is not much else to do
USD25 return taxi ride to town and the town is not much to write home about

In conclusion, if you want a good value holiday on the beach where your sole objective is to soak up the rays then this will do for you. If you want a bit more comfort and more to do then we suggest you look elsewhere.

Room Tip: The main hotel rooms overlook the pool and bar so if you want to sleep at night we suggest the beach...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 22, 2013
Dear TerenceandWendy,

Thank you very much for your kind review, we are glad that you chose to stay at Petit Lafitte for your vacation.

After reading your review I can imagine that for some odd reason you did not see our dive shop offering snorkeling, scuba, kayaking, and fishing right here in the premises.
Apparently you did not connect with our ubiquitous concierge, David Herrera, (mentioned in many reviews) who plans trips to the jungle, trips to Xcaret (20 min. away), Xelha, (45 min. away) Tulum archeological site (50 min away), swim with the dolphins (30 min away) They are at the top of the list of attractions to Riviera Maya, I mean there are a lot of attractions to Riviera Maya, and a few more like Chichen itza, one the wonders of the world, just 2 hrs away. Some guests rent a car ($ 50 US +/-) and venture out to Chichen for a day, making it back in time for dinner.
Not to mention that we have a spa with a list of services and three nights of live entertainment, music two nights and dance one night.
Town, I agree does not have a lot of history, it is a booming town that just 20 years ago was a sleepy fishing village, it has transformed over the past two decades to become the fastest growing community in Mexico, so yes, lacks history. However, excellent restaurants, clubs and shops are found there.
I am sorry that you seem to have missed them!

An advice for readers is to contact David Herrera or any member of the staff for guidance if you begin feeling the urge for adventure!
Options are available if you need them.

Now the wi-fi, yes it is fair to admit that it has been an issue, one that we have improved greatly, we tripled (in February) the bandwidth and that has helped a lot, but still we are consider even more options. As I write this, we are in the process of changing one wi-fi antenna that has reached its time. Decisive steps for improvement.

We wish to thank you for pointing out those things that need improvement and for the opportunity of clarifying other comments.

With best wishes,

Iván Fuentes
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New Jersey
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2013

We enjoyed the relaxed, unhurried vibe here and the ability to get to know and mingle with the gracious staff and guests. We stayed in Bungalow 14 about 6 units back from ocean front. Loved sitting out on the porch and seeing the sand and palm trees and hearing the sea even if we couldn't see to much of it. Inside the room is very basic but was comfortable. Definitely could use another light or two at night.
We generally enjoyed the food and didn't feel the need to venture out for variety tho if we stayed longer than 3 nights we might have. Just easier to have a drink at the bar by the beach and then head in to dinner without any fuss or arrangements.
I enjoyed swimming in both the sea and the pool. It was pretty rough in the water so it was hard to do any exercise swimming out there so I did some pool laps each day. Never a problem finding a chair in the shade.
We arrived in time for a leisurely lunch on the restaurant deck overlooking the water and that set the tone. Wonderful ceviche and guacamole was the perfect first taste of Mexico after our trip down from NJ.
Staff was always most helpful. We took an afternoon trip in to Playa del Carmen and learned a lot of history about Petit Lafitte from Cesar the cab driver (who worked there for many years) and some of the guests at the bar.
Wireless Internet was spotty to non-existent due to the issues reported on this forum but generally worked well enough for the basics. One morning the signal was strong and we did a Facetime call with our granddaughter.
We walked both directions on the beach and this location is one of the best in the area. Beach is a little wider here and seemed to be a bit cleaner. There is a large empty lot to the north so it gives the feeling of not being hemmed in by other properties. Walking past some of the mega resorts with the beach beds jammed in one against the other was pretty jarring compared to the relaxed situation at Petit Lafitte.
After our 3 days here we moved on to Cancun for a small conference. Beach was nice, room was gleaming, and we had a view of the sea from the balcony but we most definitely missed Petit Lafitte.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 20, 2013
Dear abc2 media,

Thank you so much for taking your valuable time to write a lengthy review for Petit Lafitte, we appreciate that, as well as the fact that you chose to stay with us for your first time around. It sounds to us as if you became “one with Lafitte” I mean you got into the swing of things and the pace and rhythms and in the end, you were able to appreciate the simply different quality we try to create. (To the point that you missed us during your second portion of your stay while in Cancun). Nice that you saw what can be found in the nearby mega-hotels and how dramatic the contrast can be with what you experience here.
Thank you so much for investing this time with us and we hope our paths cross again, maybe next time for a little longer vacation.

Sincerely

Iván Fuentes
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Westmount, Quebec, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

We recently met up at Petit Lafitte ... two grandparents (that's us), our five grown children and their spouses (ten more) and our 13 grandchildren, ranging in age from 6 to 20. Twenty-five of us! Petit Lafitte was the perfect place -- big enough to offer a range of accommodation (rooms for some, cottages for others), small enough that we could do what we wanted to do and still run into each other. There was always at least one table of family members in the dining-room when we went for breakfast; we had a happy hour at the beach-side bar every evening at six, and there were almost daily excursions to nearby sites of interest to keep everyone happy and entertained.
It was the best choice possible for a family reunion.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ivan F, Director of Sales at Petit Lafitte, responded to this review, March 14, 2013
Dear Janine C.

We are delighted that you opted for Petit Lafitte on your family reunion, yes we remember your group!
You guys were very polite and it was always easy to serve you. We appreciate how your grand children behaved and enjoyed the place, the beach and the pool. We truly hope that this reunion becomes a yearly tradition, in which case we will provide yet another great vacation and the same atmosphere of camaraderie and attentive service.
Be well and give a remote, but heartfelt hug to all of your lovely family.

On behalf of all the staff and the proprietors

Sincerely,

Iván Fuentes
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative 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:
#6 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#12 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Petit Lafitte 3*
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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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