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“Gorgeous Resort, but Royal Service was a disappointment”

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Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla
Ranked #19 of 215 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed April 27, 2013

We just returned from a 6 night/7 day Anniversary trip at La Perla...our plane landed just a few hours ago! This was our 5th wedding anniversary and every year we celebrate at an all-inclusive resort. Some friends stayed at La Perla last year when it first opened and had excellent things to say, especially about Royal Service. They told us that their butler reserved a pool cabana each day, brought lunch to the beach, delivered a pillow menu to their room and overall improved the vacation experience. For this reason, La Perla was a no-brainer.

We arrived to the La Perla lobby but our butler never showed up to escort us to the Royal Service lounge. We weren't too concerned and were pleasantly surprised to hear that we had been upgraded from a Junior Suite Swim Out room to a 1-Bedroom King suite Swim Out. The only catch was that we weren't in the RS tower, which was fine by us! Then things began to go down hill....

1) The resort was out of the standard RS bracelets so we were given "My Time" bracelets instead. We were told that they were "Special" and only later found out that someone was supposed to bring us the correct bracelets when they arrived the next morning. It appeared that the staff wasn't informed of "My Time bracelets" and we were hassled everywhere we went. We even had to convince the beach attendant that we were staying at the hotel before he let us onto the boardwalk!

2) When we checked in, I had to ask for the hotel vouchers that were included in our package. I was specifically told by Omar and later confirmed with him that the coupons could be combined. Of course the spa would not honor this and neither would our butler when we tried to order a bottle of champagne.

3) I had to ask for a pillow menu, which we were told was no longer offered. I asked for a cabana reservation, which was no longer offered.

4) We ordered a bottle of our favorite champagne, Asti Spumante. A few hours later, our Butler called to tell us that it was out of stock. We weren't offered anything else, no complimentary bottle of something lower quality, etc.

5) My husband lost his wedding ring on the first day!!! This was completely our fault, but the hotel handled it very poorly. He left it on the sink counter in the RS restroom. Realizing that it was lost, he went back to the restroom 20 minutes later but it was already gone. We checked with the RS desk every day and were told something different each day...no rings had been found, we'll deliver a message to Security, many rings have been found and we'll bring them to your room to review (nobody ever showed up), file a report with security- we were told this on the last day after!

6) The Biggest problem happened on day 2. It was early afternoon and we decided to fill our balcony hot tub. When my husband stood up, he bumped the giant square art piece that was hanging on the wall and it fell, breaking 2 glasses and cutting my husband's hand. We were obviously shook up, thank goodness he didn't need stitches. I went to the RS lobby but they didn't seem to understand the implications...GLASS in a hot tub, exposed wires from behind the art work and a bleeding husband! I was getting emotional at their lack of interest and simply walked out. About 15 minutes later a first aid attendant arrived and delivered band aids. Another person arrived to clean the mess on our balcony and a 3rd came to take pictures of the scene. There was never an apology, nothing to make up for the accident. We expected the hotel to go above and beyond to make the situation right, but our butler wasn't even informed.

7) We were told that our butler would prepare our hot tub 1 night during our stay so we chose the final night. We had 6:30 dinner reservations and arrived back to the room at 8:15 excited to see our final turn down service. It hadn't happened yet! Beyond disappointed, we began filling the tub ourselves and 30 minutes later our butler arrived to finish the job. It definitely took the excitement out of our evening.

8) I ordered 2 bottles of Aromatherapy spray as a nice reminder of our visit to La Perla once we were home. Our butler acknowledged the order and told me later that she was having a hard time finding fresh bottles but she'd deliver them to our room once they arrived. They never showed up, no further mention of them and we left the resort without our souvenir aromatherapy spray.

9) On our first night we received a list of restaurant reservations from our butler. Everything was going smoothly until we showed up on night 4 to La Palapa and he attendant told us that our name wasn't on the list! My husband had to walk back to the room and bring the printed card to prove we did indeed have a reservation which was made by our butler.

10) To top things off, our key stopped working at noon on our final day. Our butler confirmed that check-out was 1pm and so after lunch we headed back to our room to pack our final things only to find that our key had been deactivated. With everything else that had happened, we shouldn't have been surprised but it was a really frustrating way to end our vacation.

I have NO complaints about the food, everything we tried was excellent. The staff at the Sunset Grill were phenomenal and began to recognize us and bring nachos as soon as we arrived.

The room was beautiful and the view was extraordinary. My one complaint was the delay in cleaning. We waited some days until 3pm for our room to be serviced.

We take 2 big trips every year, an all-inclusive resort and a cruise. I don't think that we'll be up for giving La Perla another chance since our first experience was so disappointing.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank KristinC743
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quality Manager B, Gerente at Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, responded to this reviewResponded April 30, 2013

Dear Guest,

First we would like to thank you for taking your time and share about your recent stay in our Paradisus La Perla.

All our guest´s notes are very important for us, because we learn of their experience and we can improve our service, I assure you that your observations were taken in consideration in order to take actions. We regret if we did not impress you with some of our services, this is an uncommon situation, and we are working to provide de the service that you deserve.

On the other hand, we are glad to read that you enjoyed our culinary experience and we are glad to read that the service given for the Sunset Grill was phenomenal.

We truly hope that you can give us other opportunity to change your first impression, be sure that we will exceed your expectations.

Alan Becerril
Quality Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,866 - 5,872 of 9,459 reviews

Reviewed April 27, 2013

I think this is the worst experiment in my life.

Now we are here. We have Royal service but indeed local Royal means poor intermediate.
When we have arrived our butler offered us a bottle of rum for our mini bar because Royal service include it. The day passed but there was no rum. In sum I had to call them twice and remind that we are steel waiting for our rum.

There is no normal duvet here. They use two bedsheets. Can you imagine?! When you are sleep this sheets slide and as a result you are lying under blanket under which were lying many people before you. It's disgusting and vile. When I asked about normal duvet they have said that they don't have it.

I can list lack of local service for miles and miles. This hotel and it's Royal service is a waste of money. Be care of it.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank sshweda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 27, 2013

After spending a considerable amount of money on this trip for our family of five. Today, our last day and anniversary, we cancelled our Club Melia (their "time share", a $15,000 deposit) bc of the treatment we received from the spa. When we signed up for the "time share" they offered us 2 spa treatments and the spa wouldn't honored them. We walked all the way back to the place we bought the time share from and the lady called the spa and the spa would still not honor it. If this Club Melia, a supposedly prestigious club, has no pull over the spa in this resort then we don't want it. Even after signing up, you would think they would hook us up with a bigger room or give us a different bracelet for the "royal service" but we received nothing. It wasn't until we started saying that they were making us look like [--] that they immediately gave us our money back bc of all the hopeful new clients they had around them. That said the rooms are clean and the beach was nice but next time we will definitely be hitting up a different resort, although as beautiful as Mexico is we will probably never return. Our excursions to tulum (ruins) and xelha were less then satisfactory. Especially with the tour guide trying to push a Mayan calendar, bug spray and organic sunscreen. All in all not impressed.

  • Stayed: April 2013
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2  Thank Xxaries25xx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 26, 2013

First comment: if you want a beautiful high-end all-inclusive on the Riviera Maya, Paradisus La Perla adults-only is a terrific choice.

The rooms at La Perla are gorgeous, well-organized and kept spotlessly clean. In-room amenities are great, too. The Paradisus brand is high-end all-inclusive. We've traveled to them for years and really like them.That being said, we were excited to try out this new resort in the Paradisus collection and even opted for a Royal Service swim-up suite. The private veranda entrance with a spa tub is fantastic! We enjoyed the privacy so much. The entry into our "pool" was very easy, only to discover that it's not connected to the main Royal Service pool, necessitating getting out of our swim-up, drying off, walking out and down the hall and outside to get a drink from the pool bar, then reversing the process. The overworked pool bar staff only once walked over to our swim-up area during the three days we were there. If security is the reason for a lack of connection to the main Royal Service pool, then explain to me why people who were not in the swim-up suites were treated to other hotel guests who believed the swim-up area was their personal lap pool? Bad design.

Like others, we had check-in problems. My personal opinion is that the reservation department needs management re-alignment. Confirm before you go, and don't back down. We did get everything straightened out due to the committed work of one of the Royal Service staff members.

PROS: Every restaurant wait staff person was excellently trained and attentive. Best we've ever had in the entire Paradisus brand. Julio in Fuego and Ivan in La Palapa were great! The restaurants and bars are a lot of fun, and the new concepts for them at both La Perla and La Esmerelda are definite ugrades in the Paradisus hotels. Like others, we loved Fuego. The grounds are beautiful, and the main pool design keeps things from feeling too crowded. Every staff person asked if we had what we needed and were helpful at redirecting us if we got turned around. (It does take about a day to get oriented to both sides of the resort.) The spa is a true retreat and beautifully designed, and, again, the spa staff is excellently trained. The pool and resort bars were all well-run and served with a smile, a chat (if not too busy) and with the aim to have the guest's drinks just as ordered.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank SunSeeker300
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quality Manager B, Gerente at Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, responded to this reviewResponded April 30, 2013

Dear Guest,

First we would like to thank you for your preference in the Paradisus Brand, it is truly honor for us.

We appreciate all your observations, please be informed that we already passed your notes to the departments involved in order to work in our process, thank to your comments we can learn and improve our service.

On the other hand, we are very glad to read that you enjoyed the Royal Service area, the different culinary options that we offer, the YHI Spa, our facilities and the service provided for our staff, Julio and Ivan will know, about your recognition, I assure you that they will be more than happy to read about your mention. The quality of service is one of our most important goal and we are happy to see that we archived that mission during your experience with us.

Once again thank you very much you’re your candid review, and we hope to have you here in the near future.

Alan Becerril
Quality Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2013

Beautiful resort.Hard to find your way around at first,but after a few days it gets easier.The rooms are gorgeous and very clean.The staff are very friendly and helpful.There was one thing I didn't like and that's the lack of washrooms in the common areas,we could only find one washroom in the restaurant and bar area.I liked the fact that it has elevators,great when you had a long day by the pool.I would recommend this resort to anyone who want to have a great relaxing vacation.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Linda D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quality Manager B, Gerente at Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, responded to this reviewResponded April 26, 2013

Dear Guest,

First we would like to thank you for choosing our Paradisus La Perla for your recent holidays.

We are very happy to learn that you enjoyed your gorgeous room, to learn that the staff was very friendly and helpful and that you enjoyed the pool area. We are glad to read that you had a beautiful vacation with us.

Thank you for share your experience and will be a pleasure to host you again here in the paradise.

Alan Becerril
Quality Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2013

Overall friendly staff, wonderful waiter service and relaxing environment. My boyfriend and I spent 5 days 04/07/2013 - 04/12/2013. I kept saying to him how we will probably never find a nicer all-inclusive resort (with great amenities). The one issue we had was when we first arrived we were told that the swim-up suite we booked was unavailable due to a guest overstaying their time at the hotel for a medical issue (I'm from NY I know BS when I hear it). The hotel manager offered us an upgrade to a one bedroom suite on the second floor. A couple next to us overheard our issue and told us to go with the suite because no one even used the swim-ups. At first, we didn't want it. We actually booked this hotel because we had our hearts set on that swim up, it looked so cool. After speaking with other guests while we attempted to sort this out, we found out we were not the only ones to go through this trouble. But that wasn't my real issue with this mishap. We're New Yorkers so we know that things happen and sometimes hotels really have a hard time accomodating everyone when they conveniently overbook. BUT we're pretty easy going and werent going to get upset, after all we took time off from work and life to relax. My real issue was when the hotel manager had tried swaying us to the other side of the hotel to Esmeralda (La Perla is Adults Only, Esmeralda is Kid friendly) where he promised us the same EXACT swim up suite room located literally across the hotel. We had many concerns and weren't exactly thrilled but we weren't difficult and gave him the benefit of the doubt. So after the initial aggravation of hearing about the room, we trekked to the other side of the hotel (its not far just inconvenient) only to learn it had 2-double beds and the overall layout of the room screamed "FAMILY OF 4". My boyfriend and I agreed immediately we weren't staying there. We took our luggage out, went back to the manager and told him it wasn't what we promised and that the one bedroom suite on the second floor had better still be available because if not we weren't staying at the hotel (at this point we're tired of getting the run around and just want to put our stuff in a room we like and go by the pool). So we got the one bedroom suite which was beautiful and huge. We were very happy with the service from everyone at the hotel after the initial first bad impression. The bars were all great, serving top shelf if you ask. No, the beach isn't spectacular-- but who cares? If you walk maybe 5-10 minutes down the beach towards the shopping area the water clears up and theres sand what more do you need? The pool was nice and the service as usual was up to par. Yes, its cold but its a pool not a jacuzzi. Plus when the Mexican sun is cooking you, you're going to want to cool off! Food never disappointed, my favorite was Fuego. We're in our mid 20s and didn't meet many couples our age but the overall feel was young adults/married couples without the spring-breakers. The hotel isnt exactly overactive with activities but one night they had a 70s/80s night, Michael Jackson tribute, and a sushi-making class which we participated in and we had fun. If you want a little club fun with a younger crowd you can book CoCoBongo through the hotel, just ask the staff. If you're looking for a day off of the resort, one of the best days we had was when we walked from our beach to 5th street which is Playa Del Carmen's shopping center. Its literally one straight walk on the beach. It's about a 25 minute walk to the pier and you'll be greeted with lots of local restaurants and little souvenir shops. After, we took a cab back for 10 bucks. I can't say anything negative and we both agreed we would stay here again but that we might go about booking the room a little differently to avoid any issues.

Room Tip: Check room availability before you go. If you choose swim-up, ask for sunny side of hotel. If suite...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank amanda m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quality Manager B, Gerente at Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, responded to this reviewResponded April 26, 2013

Dear Guest,

We greatly appreciate your feedback on Trip Advisor and all the details mentioned above, thank you for share the about of you recent stay in our Paradisus La Perla.

We are very glad to read that you enjoyed your room, our culinary experience, the amenities, our facilities and to know that the service was very helpful with you. Also it is very pleasurable to read that you had the time to go to the center of Playa del Carmen, it is really nice to walk in the 5th Avenue, and it is a beautiful town.

On the other hand, we regret for the inconvenience at the beginning of your stay, thank you for gave us the opportunity to change your first impression and let us pamper you and let us show you the real Paradisus Experience.

Will be an honor for us, host you again in the near future and exceed your expectations.

Alan Becerril
Quality Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2013 via mobile

What great service and staff! The food was amazing, which was surprising for an all inclusive. We hosted an incentive trip for a group and everyone had a great time! It's right on the beach but most people spend the day it at the amazing pools. Paradisus is located a very short taxi drive from shops and bars. Loved it!

  • Stayed: April 2013
    • Value
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1  Thank LoveLisette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quality Manager B, Gerente at Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, responded to this reviewResponded April 26, 2013

Dear Guest

Thank you very much for share your experience in our Paradisus La Perla.

We are very happy to read that you enjoyed our facilities, the pool area and had a great time with us. Sometimes when it is a visit with a group is a little difficult to enjoy the place, but we are pleased to read that most of your group spent a good time in our resort.

Please if you decide to come back with your family will be a pleasure to host you.

Alan Becerril
Quality Manager

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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 Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla

Address: 5a Avenida | Corner Calle 112, Col. Luis Donaldo Colosio, Playa del Carmen 77719, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#13 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#16 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#16 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $357 - $793 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla 4.5*
Number of rooms: 393
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla is a hotel catering to the discerning all-inclusive traveler. With 58 swim-up suites, opulent furnishings, and international cuisine prepared by award-winning chefs, this adults-only hotel is a crowd pleaser. Rooms feature special touches like deep soaker tubs and rainfall showers. Marble floors, flat-screen TVs, Minibar, in-room safe, free Wi-Fi, coffee maker, bathrobes and slippers, cable TV service and a DVD/CD player compliment the trendy interior design. Stay active with water sports like aqua aerobics, yoga, zumba and volleyball, or visit the spacious fitness facility. The Spa offers a wet and dry sauna($). Try a different menu every night with 14 restaurants. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Perla Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Perla Riviera Maya, Mexico

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