We vacationed at the Rosewood Mayakoba the week of Valentine Day and had a wonderful time. In many ways, it was definitely worth 5 stars but there were just enough "issues" to keep the experience from being a truly 5 star experience.
First, the good: The resort is beautiful, with the most beautiful and perfectly kept grounds. We had an over lagoon suite, which was absolutely gorgeous. The service was exceptional, but with a few lapses.
We found ourselves wishing for some written information, about the resort and it's services, to reference during our stay. This is the first hotel/resort that we have visited that had no such written information. We received a verbal orientation on arrival but, over time, we discovered things that we were not told in that orientation (e.g., the bicycle policy, the "Mayaoba Connection boat). Every room is asigned an am and a pm "butler" and our assumption, after the fact, is that they are meant to be the source of all information. At the time, we were a bit unsure what the role of our butlers was. With regard to our butler, and all others who served us, the hotel "service charge" implies that no tipping is necessary (in fact we were told that explicitly at check in). Tipping may not be "necessary" but it is certainly expected; we were told by one of our butlers that "most people tip". However, since we were already paying 16% for a "service charge", we found ourselves confused, and even a bit stressed, deciding who we should tip and how much.
The service was very good but there were some lapses. We had to request turndown service on our last night. The service in the restaurants seemed slow on most occasions. We booked dinner at Casa del Lago on Valentine Day and were not told it would only be prix fixe, which we did not want (we retired to our room for room service). The beach cabanas, of which there are few, were allowed to be "saved" by putting personal articles in the cabana. We observed cabanas being unused for hours before the "savers" arrived. We also heard one beach attendant accept the offer of a daily "tip" (i.e., bribe) to hold a certain spot each day for the "tipper". The beach area is quite small, having lost some beach to the hurricane in 2006, and we found the biggest congregation of children there. We spent most of our sun time at the pool, which was not very crowded, even though the hotel was almost full.
The restaurants: Casa del Lago and Punta Bonita were good, if not great. Prices for food were typical resort prices but wine and liquor were over the top. A bottle you could buy for $25 dollars would cost $150. We had sushi at Agave Azul and thought it was awful.
For us, the most negative thing about the resort was what was outside. Though beaches are public, ACCESS to the beaches is very difficult. Virtually all beach access is controlled by hotels, adventure parks and "beach clubs". We are avid snorkelers but never went snorkeling because there was no place to go that (a)would not be extremely crowded, and (b)cost nothing to use. For many, especially families with kids, the adventure/eco parks are very popular. We did not find the commercial nature appealing. Of course, Playa del Carmen has a typical tourist "beach town" feel.
The bicycles: There are not enough for every room and you cannot request that the next available be held for you. You have to keep going back to the bell desk and asking for availability. However, when you do get bicycles, you have them for the duration. Your room number is put on the bicycle and you keep it at your room until checkout. We did have our bikes "stolen" from the pool at one point but our butler found them and returned them.
Overall, we had a nice, relaxing vacation and we could definitely recommend the resort. The experience just did not live up to our favorite resort, to which we compare everything (The Four Seasons at Hualalai).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Rosewood Mayakoba is situated on the Riviera Maya. This luxury resort in Mexico offers spacious suites and is located south of Cancun and north of the charming seaside village of Playa del Carmen.Surrounded by the emerald embrace of the jungle and caressed by warm Carribbean breezes, is a resort of rare luxury and indulgence. Rosewood Mayakoba is imbued with the unique spirit of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. A journey to this serene world, immersed in the dense green perfume of the jungle, captivates the soul with unimaginable tropical beauty,and pure, simple refinement. The ecological enclave of Mayakobá is a new, enlightened model of true luxury hospitality that celebrates the land without compromising it. Mayakoba embraces the government restrictions on development and mangrove preservation which has always been a top priority for the developers and designers. The Madrid-based construction company OHL, with 25 years of experience in Mexico, owned the land for many years before choosing how to build upon it. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Rosewood Mayakoba Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Rosewood Mayakoba Playa Del Carmen
- Rosewood Mayakoba Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico