We visited the Iberostar Quetzal March 2nd to 9th, 2014. This was my second time at this resort as I attended a wedding here six years ago. My husband couldn't go to that wedding and I knew this would be exactly the type of resort he would love.
Well, I got that right. He loved it and I loved it all over again.
We went with Air Canada Vacations and I thought it was well organized. After arriving at the airport, it was very easy to find our transportation to our hotel. We were with a total group of eight people. Check-in went rather smoothly with Marcela, a very lovely young lady with a good sense of humour. We were provided with a welcome punch drink which I thought was a nice touch and refreshing.
Marcela assigned us to building 27. From reading previous reviews on the hotel, some said it was too noisy as it was by the Flamingo pond and the Entertainment area. So I questioned it and she could not accommodate a change for us that night, but said she could if we came back tomorrow. She said, this was a very nice room and maybe we should try it first. Well, Marcela was right. This room was perfect. It was on the top floor, King bed, corner unit. The view was wonderful. I quite liked the view of the Flamingo pond. The entertainment at night was not loud at all. Nothing a good pair of earplugs could cure if it really bothered someone. This was, I believe, a junior-type suite as it was quite a bit nicer than some of the rooms we peeked into when the staff were cleaning.
I don't understand why people complain about the food. We loved the Buffets and thought there was great variety. In fact, we enjoyed the Buffets more than the special restaurants. For breakfast, we would go down to the beach to eat. Later on, we went back to the Cozumel buffet to try breakfast as there is more variety. Lunches were usually at the beachfront and I must say, the burgers were quite delicious.
We had no problem booking our three special restaurants that you are allowed to have.
We ate at the Tropical, and La Hacienda. We also booked the Steak House, but ended up cancelling it in the end. My only complaint with the special restaurants was with our waiter at La Hacienda who made a sneering laugh when my husband and I chose the same meal as our choice. Not sure what that was all about, and we were surprised because all other staff were polite and helpful.
The grounds of this resort are amazing. Walking through the jungle paths is a delightful, gorgeous walk. It is fabulous that this resort was built around nature. The Agoutis, Flamingos, Cranes, Iguanas, Peacocks and Peahens, Howler Monkeys, tortoises, are all at home here. I even saw the resort cat.
We thought the Star Friends were really great. They often walk the beach and go up to the guests just to say hi and chat for awhile. It's not all about trying to get you to do activities. If you decline, they don't push it. There is so much you can do, all day long if you are not the type to just lie around at the beach. You will be very busy, if you want to be. We did play tennis in the evening, but a light or two was burned out, and the tennis balls are old as the hills. I think they should be regularily changed. Small issue. Their evening entertainment is all about fun. It is not always the best show you've ever seen, but if you don't appreciate the effort, you shouldn't bother going or talking about it. They are a lot of fun.
The beach is quite beautiful. Six years ago, I had arrived just after a storm had pretty much destroyed the beach and there was very little of it left with palapas falling into the ocean. Looking at it today, you would never believe it was the same beach. Facing the Sea, you only have one hotel to your right. After that it is just jungle and beach and a long, wonderful, safe walk. To the left, you can walk all the way to Playa Del Carmen. We did both. When entering the sea, there are no rocks or stones, just soft sand.
The pool area is huge and beautiful. The one thing I wish would change, but I know never will, is the fact that people "save" the loungers. We were up everyday at 6:00 a.m. and still could not get a lounger under a palapa. The hotel says it has a policy in place to prevent this, but it is not enforced. In the end, we would just get a beach umbrella at the towel hut and use that and that was perfect. However, these beach umbrellas are in sore shape and need to be replaced. I would definitely suggest that. I think it doesn't look that great for the resort to have umbrellas that are torn and falling off the spokes. We saw hotels further down the beach that have umbrellas, that are large and beautiful and really make their place look elegant.
About a 5-10 minute walk down the main front, boulevard street is an outdoor shopping centre. It is small, but good enough to get a few items and a change of scenery. You could then easily walk to Playa Del Carmen. It would be about a 35 minute walk with ruins and beautiful homes along the way.
I think the location of this hotel is exceptional. All in all, I would highly recommend this resort and I would definitely go back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Privileged situation directly on the beach of Playacar, around 3 km from the town of Playa del Carmen. A watersports and diving paradise. Sub- tropical mangrove swamp. Great gastronomical variety. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Quetzal Playacar Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Iberostar Hotel Quetzal Playacar
- Iberostar Quetzal Playa Del Carmen
- Iberostar Quetzal Playacar Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico