We stayed at EPM for 12 nights having booked a package through Caribbean Warehouse, flew with BA and private transfer was with Jumbo Tours. Very pleased with CW, representative from Jumbo Tours called out our name outside the airport and the transport arrived after about 15 minutes. We were given an invite to meet Alex at the back of the lobby as he acts as CW’s rep during your stay. This was our third visit to EPM and it exceeded our expectations and laid our doubts about the construction completely to rest. We were very pleased that we had declined CW’s offer to switch to ERC and would have kicked ourselves if we had missed our time at EPM.
We did have an issue on the BA flight, large group of lads were served way too much alcohol and became rowdy. We had the grand total of 2 drinks ourselves as the bar was empty when we asked for one, not impressed.
Anyhow, all thoughts of that forgotten when we arrived, had room 7254 with a mattress topper as previously requested by email and a bottle of champagne and fruit waiting for us. We unpacked, showered and ate at the Grill which was a bit disappointing as they gave us the wrong steaks, very fatty and gristly but when they brought the right ones, they were much better. In non EC rooms, you get a bottle of rum, tequila, Smirnoff vodka and red wine. We asked if we could switch the rum and tequila for a bottle of whisky but were told no, that perk was only for EC rooms. We accepted this but think it’s a silly rule and we would almost rather have not had the spirits than those we didn’t want to drink. This was resolved though by a friend of ours that has travelled to EPM several times and we did get the rum and tequila changed to a bottle of Johnnie Walker Black label. Can’t comment on the red wine as we didn’t open it and we didn’t like the white wine in the minibar (not up to the same standard as the wine served elsewhere).
We mostly hung out by the pool adjacent to the main pool as it was central without being too noisy (and I don’t mean the construction!). There was often a rowdy crowd gathered in the main pool towards the end of most afternoons but as others have said, if this is not for you, there are plenty of quieter spots. We did hear some sporadic construction noise but it did not affect our holiday in any way. One thing that did irritate me was the people that hogged the floats, taking them out of the pools and putting them by their sunbeds as if they were for their own personal use. I was pleased to see on the odd occasion that a member of staff picked them up and put them back on the poolside. It was quite amusing to see one couple returning to their beds looking for it. Incidentally, they had reserved their beds and it was lunchtime when they appeared. I believe they had probably also reserved beds on the beach. We did leave our beds whilst we went for lunch or out on the hobie cats but there didn’t seem to be any issues with people looking for sunbeds.
We went out twice on the hobie cats and once on a jet ski. You can haggle the price of these, we were told 60$ for 10 minutes but got half an hour for 50$ which was very reasonable. I was impressed by the guys from Aquaworld as when a couple we’d met capsized their hobie cat, the guys ran to the jet skis and rescued them within minutes. My tip would be to make the most of the free watersports which included the kayaks but also make sure you tip the guys. They took us out to give my husband a refresher in sailing the hobie cats and I don’t think they always get any recognition for what they provide to EPM guests.
We didn’t venture out this time as we were so chilled enjoying everything and have been out and about on previous trips.
I won’t go into detail about the bars and restaurants, suffice to say there are already numerous reviews with enough detail but would say that we thoroughly enjoyed all of them, the only one we didn’t try was the Mediterranean this time round. We mostly ate breakfast at Toscana and were welcomed by either the lovely Gloria or Shehily. Did try the Lobster Grill one morning and loved that too.
We weren’t overly impressed last time with Agave but their menu has changed and is more extensive and authentic and were glad we managed to eat there twice. The first time was as part of a party of 12 celebrating a birthday thanks to Todd (Travelinman) for arranging it with Vilma. The table was decorated and the staff looked after us all extremely well, even providing a birthday cake and plenty of tequila shots (which I didn’t actually have as I don’t like tequila unless it’s disguised in the cocktails). Both times, Claudio was our waiter and he made the flaming coffee for us which was absolutely fantastic to watch and also to drink.
There is a lot more live music than before, some bands playing during the day by the pool which we enjoyed as much as the evenings in Kafe Kafe. Only saw the fire show and part of the Michael Jackson show as mostly eating dinner during the times the shows were on.
We met Eric Cervantes and Naikare at the managers cocktail meeting and when my husband mentioned that our friend had a back problem, he arranged for the spa manager to come and speak to him who then arranged a free massage treatment which did relieve his problem to some extent. Eric also arranged a special table for the 4 of us at Basmati as our friend had mentioned that she was surprised there was no shrimp on the menu. We had eaten there a few nights previous and Javiar looked after us and even remembered what we had all been drinking the other evening. Our table was beautifully decorated with petal hearts and they did a special menu, including shrimp dishes, for us.
We had been introduced to Vilma by our friends, Todd & Carla, and the day before we left (our pick up was 2.30pm), we asked her if it was possible to keep our room for another half an hour. She spoke to reception and we were allowed to keep it for another hour which made all the difference to us. Whilst she was speaking to reception, Naikare asked us where we were eating on our last night. We told her the French with another couple and she asked us what time. When we arrived at the restaurant that evening, we were met by the manager, Pedro and taken to our table which had been decorated with petals. The waiter Raoul, looked after us and at the end of the meal, he took our desert menus away and told us they had arranged something special for us. The chef, Nester, then came out with 6 different deserts for us to try. It made our last evening very special.
Caesar and Hugo at the Martini Bar were great, suggested different drinks for us to try and Caesar would have my husband’s whisky on the rocks ready as we approached.
Our concierge Christian, also went out of his way. We stopped by to ask him where we could find some English paperbacks as there were none in the computer room, as we had found before. He asked us what type of books we liked to read and when we returned to our room that night, he had left us 3 books, all by authors we liked but hadn’t read. This is the sort of little touch where the staff at EPM exceed our expectations.
Cindy never let us go thirsty while we were sat by the pool. The lack of service was noticeable on her days off except for when Santiago served us too, we enjoyed our chats with him.
Other staff that looked after us were Gustavo, Tomas, Ruben, Efrain inToscano, Freddy, Carlos, Gerado at the Grill to name but a few.
The lady that did our turn down service, decorated our bed with petals and a towel heart on our last but one night. We had left a tip for her but feel bad that we didn’t get to see her or get her name. Also the minibar guy was good at making sure we had everything. There were a few days when they didn’t leave any creamer for our coffee but not a big deal for us. Nobody can expect complete perfection but what stands out for us overall is the service at EPM and the impression you get that everyone is happy in the work and their aim is to please their guests as much as possible.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Luxury adults-only resort nestled among seven swimming pools on a powdery white sand beach, in a community that boasts a spectacular Greg Norman signature golf course. This jewel of Cancun sets a new standard of luxury for all-inclusives with finely tuned amenities such as one-of-a-kind accommodations including two-story rooftop terrace suites with a private Plunge pool, meticulous service, gourmet cuisine, an exquisite spa and the signature Excellence Club. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
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- Excellence Hotel Playa Mujeres
- Playa Mujeres Excellence Hotel
- Excellence Playa Mujeres Cancun