I was very anxious prior to staying at Mayan Palace, because of the reviews that were given in the past. I went with 7 of my girlfriends, ages 25-59 (wide range) and we all had a wonderful time here. We got an extremely good deal for the week ($79/each for 1 week) and we had a 2 bedroom suite in building 1.
Room: I sent an e-mail 3 days prior to arriving to request building 1. Heard that there is a lot of walking going on, and we wanted to be as close to the pool as possible. They accomidated us, we had a 1st floor room in building 1, basically as close as we could get to the main pool area. We were very pleased. The room was upated in style, the kitchen was well stocked, and included a fridge, microwave, and burners, along w/ all the pots and pans and cooking utencils we needed. The beds were pretty hard, but we requested foam pads, and they helped ALOT. They came every night and prepared the couches for bed, put all the linens on and did a second quick clean of the room. They cleaned so well all week, we felt like princesses. The air conditioning was so cold, we often had to turn it down because it worked so well. We had an issue w/ our fridge, and then w/ our TV, but we called and they had it fixed within 30 min. The operator (Felix) was so much fun to talk to and he helped us with EVERYTHING.
Pool: Beautiful. The pool area is HUGE. You really cannot fathom how large it is until you see it. They have about 15 different areas of the pool to hang out in, yet they are all connected. The servers at the pool area are attentive and friendly. We ordered food from the pool area, and it was always very good. The fish sandwich is soooo yummy. They have happy hour every day from 11-1 (2x1 drinks) and a "special" drink they serve 2x1 until 5. They also have affordable food in the giftshop area, including made to order sandwiches and salads. They allow you to bring floaty things into the pool, I brought a lounge chair from home and had no problems with using it in the pool. We also brought a bag-looking cooler and brought beer to the pool, and even though its clearly posted that its not allowed, they never said anything. One day we also ordered like 20 of the 2x1 beers, and they brought a large metal bowl w/ ice for us to keep them in. They were very very accomodating, even though they really didn't need to go to such great lengths. The pool is 24 hours, and at night there was no one in the pool. There were a few nights where we went swimming in the buff, and not a single person saw us or bothered us.
Beach: The beach was nice, but knowing that we couldn't go swimming in it, we really didn't spend much time there.
Puerto Morelos: For swimming in the ocean, we went to Puerto Morelos and hung out at a beach bar called Cabanas Ixchel. Its about 10 min from the resort. It was recommend to me by a friend that lives down there, and she was sooooo right. Its the only beach bar in Puerto Morelos, and its phenominal. Sarah, who runs it, makes the best margaritas ($3) and mojitos ($3), and the view is to die for. Its really like something out of a movie. We loved it so much we went there 2 days. There were no tourists, its a local spot, and it felt so surreal, I highly recommend. We also visited a place called "The Jungle Spa" in Puerto Morelos. Its not well known at all, and its kind of hard to find, so have the concierge call before you leave to get directions and to warn them you are coming so they can prepare. The massages are traditional Mayan massages, and they get in deep and move organs and all sorts of stuff. It was the best massage I've ever had. The massage itself is $35, and I also got an additional treatment of aloe, where the take fresh aloe and lather your body with it and then wrap you in banana leaves. Its amazing on your skin. That was $25. It was so worth it. Its not super fancy there, but these women have heart, and make it such a personal experience. Highly recommend it. We also got a personal guide for snorkling in Puerto Morales, and he was amazing. $25 got us 2 hours out in the ocean,and a very personal guided experience. Some of the girls were very scared to go in the water and snorkle, and he held their hands and made them so comfortable, soon they were loving it.
Cabs: Cabs are what killed us. They are super expensive. You can negotiate a price, just make sure you tell them upfront what you want to pay. The airport is only about 30 min away, so if you have a large group its cheaper to catch a cab back to th airport then to use their shuttle service. We also took advantage of the resorts shuttle to the Walmart in town, and we would pay $4.00 each one way to Playa. The last shuttle leaves at 6pm, so we would take the shuttle and then hang out in Playa until dinner.
Dinners: We often ate out in Playa or Puerto Morelos, and the food was delish! Talk to your cab driver about recommedations. We ate at the Blue Lobster one night, and it was fabulous, the service, everthing was amazing. We also ate out at the little taco places around town, the cab drivers were fine with making a pit stop to eat or whatever. We also got food from Walmart, and made a few dinners in our room. We never got sick, not any of us. And there was plenty of veggie eating going around. Word is that they have updated their pipes in the area. We still got very large bottles of water for our room, but I heard other people were drinking out of the tap and were fine.
Monkeys: We went to the Jungle Place near Tulum one day, and played with Spider Monkeys. Highly recommed this as well. It was $40 for 1 hour, and we got reseved alone time w/ the monkeys they rescued and raised. They were so fun and sweet. The owners Heidi and her husband took pictures of us the entire time, I think I have about 100 pics w/ monkeys on my camera. It was a once in a lifetime experience. Be sure to call or e-mail Heidi to reserve a time. They have a website just google The Jungle Place.
Nightlife: We went to a couple beach bars in Playa at night. The blue parot has free drinks for ladies on pretty much every night, and they play a mix of dance/techno/mexicana music. The dance floor faces the ocean, and the bar stools are swings! Very fun. We went to Coco Bongo on our last night. We were sceptical about paying $45 for the entry fee - but I can say they could charge at least $100 in the states and get away with it. It included all drinks, and it was the biggest party/show I've ever seen. Confetti and balloons were constantly flying around, they had dancers and music impersonators, and trapeze artists hanging from the ceiling. It was so much fun!!
The local people, everywhere we went, were very friendly and helpful. The staff at the resort were amazing. They have outlawed begging in the city, so no more harrassment of tourists. We felt very safe, being a group of ladies, and were taken care of wherever we went. From the local feel of Puerto Morelos, to the Big City experience in Playa, we had a memorable experience and will definitly be back to the area, and to this resort.
- Also Known As:
- Mayan Riviera
- Mayan Palace Cancun
- Wyndham Playa Del Carmen
- Riu Palace Riviera Maya
- Cancun Grand Mayan
- Grand Maya Mayan Riviera
- Playa Del Carmen Wyndham
- Mayan Palace Playa Del Carmen
- Mayan Palace Riviera Maya Mexico
- Mayan Palace Riviera Maya Playa Paraiso, Mexico