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Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel
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Reviewed December 31, 2012

One of the best 6 day vacations we had in December 2012. The staff is awesome food is delicious and fresh(we even met Chef Maria), it was quiet peaceful definitely a place for couples to go and re connect. Minor issue with water getting hot but it eventually was fixed and a treat with the large bathroom and rainshower for two. We never had the hotel feel since the room was so large and luxurious. We love riding the bikes around.
Dont miss the spa . The steam room is swesome, Heber at the spa took such great care of us it was a treat. Thank you Heber. We have no problems with the food, and service was always good, special mention to Roman, Aracelli, Fiorisel at the Auamarina.
We accidentlaly threw away our transportation ticket which I needed to gte back to hotel and the staff actually went through the trash to find it for us!
We would recommend it for couples who just want to spend time with each other, it is not a party resort for sure, but perfect for a romantic get away
We will definitely go back

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank mnsp1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2012

We visited the resort in June and are very delayed in writing a review. Overall, the stay was completely delightful! It is a new resort so they are working to iron out some wrinkles, but the few wrinkles we encountered were minor and did not detract from our stay. The most notable things about the resort are the excellent service and the stunning setting/property.

Service:
- BEST part of our stay! The staff are incredibly motivated and dedicated and TRULY seem to care about your wellbeing during the stay.
- Our every "wish" was granted. We didn't hear "no" at all, and we made a few requests (such as an umbrella on our roof deck... they had it up there within the hour, and they would raise and lower the umbrella throughout the day/evening without our asking!)
- Special thanks to:
- Omar, Cesar, Eulalio, Javier, Jesus, and Ramon who worked all over the property to serve us food and drinks in the restaurants, by the pool, and on the beach. They made our trip so relaxing and they were top-notch servers.
- Alejandra, Dagaberto, Rugelio, Javier, and Rojelio who worked in the restaurants! So helpful and attentive.
- Miguel! He was our wonderful housekeeper who kept our room perfectly clean! We got locked out one day and he came sprinting down the boardwalk to let us in - he was out of breath and sweating and that was completely unnecessary, but he totally went above and beyond the call of duty. He is a gem!
- Javier, Guillermo, and Edher: wonderful bartenders! Delicious drinks and great suggestions!

Activities:
- AMAZING snorkeling/diving through the sister resort. We walked down there, took the trip, and then were dropped off at the resort via boat. We were SHOCKED at how beautiful this snorkel location was, and we have done some great snorkeling all over. This is top notch.
- Evening activities were sufficient for our needs. Most nights we turned in early!

Spa:
- Gorgeous location.
- Excellent yoga. Both days we were the only two who attended the free yoga class, so it was just us!
- GREAT facial!
- Special thanks to:
- Javier: he works in the spa and during the Temezcal ceremony.
- Fernanda: she leads the Temezcal ceremony
- Ricardo: EXCELLENT yoga instructor

Food:
- We were completely thrilled with the food. No buffets. Everything is ordered off the menu. Seafood dishes were delicious! I also enjoyed the quail one evening. Breakfasts were great.
- The restaurants alternate each night. The nights that are in Ambar the menu is the same. Aguamarina has a different menu each night they have dinner. Men, bring long pants for Ambar.
- Lunch menus by the pool were extensive, so you didn't feel like you were repeating meals. We repeated some things because they were so good but not because we ran out of options.
- Top shelf liquor in all drinks. Cucarachas were amazing!

Facilities:
- room is to die for
- absolutely stunning view of lagoon
- roof deck was a great place to read/relax
- impeccably clean
- all of the amenities you could want
- top shelf liquor (included)
- individual cup coffee maker (included)
- safe (we forgot our code one night and they came within five mins to reset for us)
- delightfully comfy bed
- Palafitos suite had an outdoor plunge pool/large tub (big enough for two) and an outdoor shower on the roof (no coverage, so not private)
- shower water takes a while to warm up

Overall, we would return in a heartbeat!!!!!! It was a little slice of heaven.

Oh, this is more of a resort for couples or adult families. Kids will be bored.

Room Tip: We toured the resort and saw lots of room options; you really can't go wrong at all. If you want to be near the restaurants or the beach, the Palafitos are near the beach end of the resort.
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank speroli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2012

My spouse and I spent 5 days / 4 nights at this resort. The best things about this resort are the amazing food and the spa facility.

First – the food. It was incredible! There are no buffets; we picked from a great selection of items on the menu. The breakfast included an amazing selection of food, as well as specially-prepared, fresh juices. Lunch can even be served pool side, and we did this a couple times. At dinner, there are two restaurants to choose from, and each night there was a theme (Mayan, Middle Eastern) at the restaurant by the pool. Each night we were very pleased with our meal. I am vegetarian, and there were ample choices. Also, they were happy to accommodate my vegetarian diet if I wanted something difference. The chef once prepared something just for me, and it was excellent.

Second – the pool-side bar. It was awesome and the bartenders were great. They prepare the best drinks and are very friendly.

Third – the spa. It’s an amazing facility with its own indoor and outdoor pools, sauna, and steam room. A great experience, especially on a rainy day!

Fourth – the room! We stayed in the Jr. Patio room. It was amazing!! Very large, elegant, and comfortable. The closet is huge and can accommodate your luggage, so it doesn’t clutter up your room. The bathroom is huge and had two showers – a “his and hers.” It also had a large ottoman in the middle of the floor in front of the sinks. You could lounge there. Just outside the bathroom was an empty plunge pool, which they can fill for you upon request. However, it does not seem enticing (or very clean), so I wouldn’t bother choosing a room with a plunge pool.

There are a couple things to note about this resort. It is not a crazy, party resort. The main pool is small compared to pools at other large resorts. The infinite pool did not work well during our stay, and the hot tub was not hot. The management and staff were aware of the problem and were trying to fix it; though it wasn’t fixed during our stay. The pool bar is open in the evening, but sometimes we were the only ones there. This was fine for us. The beach in this location did not look as beautiful as it does in other parts of Cancun/Riviera Maya. So, we spent most of our time at the pool.

Overall, it was a very, very nice vacation experience. We hope to come back!

Room Tip: Jr. Patio Suite was amazing! Plunge pool not necessary - empty and un-enticing.
  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank LexBeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2012

Spent our 10th wedding anniversary at the Blue Diamond on December 2nd (from Nov. 3- to Dec. 5). First impression was fantastic! We were greeted at the front desk and were whisked away to our patio pool suite by 2 extremely pleasant, nice and accommodating men (I forget their names) for our check-in. We were met by our concierge, Jose.
The Suite was large, well appointed and looked great, but you could notice signs of wear and tear on the mirrors, walls and ceilings. The patio was large and the plunge pool a good size -
The grounds themselves are really large and impressive. The bicycles provided made it easy to go from the front desk to the beach, although a lift was available with just a phone call.
THE GOOD
I truly do not understand the negative comments about the staff or service - all of the people who greeted us, served us, gave us directions, EVERY single staff member on this property were professional and courteous. Their communication skills were well above par, in perfect english and even in French when they realized It was my first language.
THE BAD
After reading reviews and browsing the Hotel's website, we were under the impression that there were 3 restaurants, all 'fine dining'. Not so. You have a choice between room service (we'll get back to that after) and 1 restaurant for breakfast, Aguamarina, and an added snack place, Ceviche, for lunch. Both breakfast and lunch were (mostly) great food. Dinner however, had alternating service, one night at the smaller casual beach restaurant (Aguamarina) (breakfast and lunch, making it the place to eat all 3 meals of the day) and a larger nicer one where the food was at best, average, Ambar. So the idea that you will have a diverse menu is false. At both restaurants - there is a choice of beef, chicken or salmon as mains for dinner. I had stayed at the very mediocre Blue Bay Esmeralda a mile away on a previous trip. The food there was 3*, but for variety sake, we enquired for the possibility of going there for meals. It is a Sister Resort - we were advised that in order to go there, we would have to PAY for our meals and transport!!! I have to say that after seing my reaction the concierge advised that they would make an exception and we would only have to pay for our transport - so we decided against it.

We had anticipated romance, lounging in our room, enjoying our pool during the day and having room service. The fantasy quickly vanished when we realized that the back yard was shaded, with no direct sun and that the pool was not heated. Our first room service order came completed cold - like left-overs cold. With these disappointments we contacted our concierge Jose who was extremely apologetic but did not do anything to remedy the situation. You have to note that there is a 20$US charge for every room delivery on top of which a 15% service charge and 11% tax is added. I should also mention that the room service menu is short and does not even come close to depict the 'gastronomy' advertised.
THE UGLY
After check-in, I went for a shower - a cold shower! Great! Maintenance came twice and finally we were advised that 'this is as good as it gets'! Thank God there was a small second bathroom where there was hot water. So, with the lack of sun on the patio, the pool's and shower's cold water, we asked to be moved but were told we had the 'best' room on the property. We were offered a much smaller 'upgrade?' with a great view, but half of the interior space and a full sun deck, with no pool and no privacy with neighbours downstairs and right next door (Palafitos Jr.), so we stayed put.
We mentioned our issues when prompted and we were told that they were still in their 'soft opening' stage, appreciated our comments and would 'look into it'... We heard the word 'management', but never saw or heard from any of them. The resort's opening was in January, so 1 year to 'soft open' a resort is obviously a fib. They must have 'flagged' us as 'the dissappointed anniversary guests', because the already amazing service and staff started to over compensate to the point of embarrassment - at one point there were 5 people standing around our table wanting to make sure everything was ok - way too much! I forgot to mention that there is a charge for top shelf liquor
CONCLUSION
I researched this trip for a long time as it was for a special occasion and split our 15 day vacation into 3 five day stays at 3 different resorts: The Blue Diamond, The Grand Velas and the Rosewood Mayakoba (2nd visit). Our vacation surpassed all of our expectations, except for the Blue Diamond which fell short. Mostly little things, but still, like having to wear a wrist band, quality of food, nickel and dimming - just the lack of luxury you would feel in a hi calibre resort.
SUGGESTIONS
Remove the room service charge and expend your menu until you have more than 1 restaurant with a short menu or make this hotel a 'non' all inclusive, because the only value you get from this all inclusive is free booze - and if you're not a drinker, you will be disappointed. And to the manager, whoever you are, I wish you would have taken the time to come and meet us personally to address our concerns, as it was a very important trip for us and there was extremely low occupancy rate.

Room Tip: The Beach Casitas are the only suites that are large, have sun, pools and a view - we stayed in room 368 and were told it was the best patio pool suite - no sun and no hot water - did not get treatments at the spa but it is gorgeous
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Sonia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 26, 2012

I'd never been on this kind of vacation before, either to Mexico, this region, or a resort-type hotel. What a super place this turned out to be! We had a beautiful room (Jr.Patio) that was contemporary, elegant and quite large. As others have pointed out, the bathroom was fantastic, with dual rainfall showers and never a problem with hot water or water pressure. A very nice touch was the hot tub outside. Yes, you have to request it be filled, but we did and it was, no problem (and the bubble-bath one night was a nice treat!)

The concept of this resort is to be small in size (they said I think 128 rooms total) and I much prefer this to some of the extremely large multi-hotel complexes we saw. With the lack of crowds, large and beautiful rooms, and amazing staff, this felt much more exclusive, than the cattle-ranch with apartment-style small hotel rooms stacked one on top of the other I saw a few doors down the beach. In fact our room was single-story, which I highly recommend, and had a beautiful sense of privacy with the vegetation in front of the river (we had room 335). Although there was one shared wall, we never heard a sound from any other room during our stay.

When we started there were only 55 other guests, but this jumped upwards quickly as the days got closer to Christmas. Perhaps we got lucky starting out with fewer folks, but it really seemed like the staff got to know us, by name and where we were from, and it was quite touching, when we left, it seemed like a few of the restaurant staff in particular were genuinely sorry to see us go. Araceli, Daniel, Prisciliano, Roman and Cesar at Aguamarina, and Fernando and Omar at Ambar in particular tried so hard to make everything great, I couldn't imagine a more dedicated staff.

Never having been to Mexico before, I was a little anxious about some of the gang-violence one sees on the news, but as the bus-guide explained on the way in, this happens up on the border with the USA, and we were many thousands of km's away from that. At no time did anything feel weird, and in fact this resort seemed very compact and well supervised. My other concern reading reviews of resorts was room theft, but in fact, one time my boyfriend was in such a hurry to get to the beach, he left the room safe open. When I got back some time later, the cleaning staff had been in, alerted security, who had come by the room, locked the safe, and had to be paged to open it for us again. So they really seemed to take safeguarding us seriously! I noted that they sprayed in the evening to control mosquitos, and the only wildlife I saw were some beautiful and musical-sounding birds, and the occasional cute iguana in the distance.

I should mention that I'd never travelled as part of a gay couple before, and was also wondering how that would go over. Well, the staff seemed totally fine with this and were as friendly or more so to us as we observed them being with any of the other guests. We saw several other same-sex couples during our stay, so the word is obviously out that this is a welcoming hotel.

As many have already pointed out, another part of the concept of this hotel is for all the food to be a la carte. I have heard many bad things about recycled and stale buffet food, so this was a relief. The food at BD was generally very good; any of the Mexican dishes like fajitas were terrific, and the seafood-soup and shrimp brochettes were also winners. I had steak a number of times, and it was generally excellent, just once I had to send it back as it was far too overcooked to eat. But the staff was very accomodating about this, there was never any attitude and another dish was served up promptly. My bf found the one chicken dish he tried very salty, and so we stuck to the local dishes we'd had previous success with.

With 2 different restaurants to eat lunch at, and 2 for dinner, with different menus, we didn't tire of the choices. We enjoyed the local bubbly that was part of the general selection, and tended to have that most of the time, so we never needed to venture off into the extra-charge wine-list.

It should be noted that this an adults-only resort, and part of their concept seems to be to maintain as tranquil an environment as possible. If you're looking for wild night-life, best to take a cab into Playa del Carmen; there really isn't much going on at the resort. Again given what I've heard about out-of-control drunken revellers at all hours at the larger resorts, power to the Blue Diamond for creating a clear alternative for those of us that

I highly recommend the temazcal ceremony if you're up to a fair bit of heat before the end; Enrique, the young shaman who led us through this was terrific, combining a thorough knowledge of the background of the ritual with common-sense and everyday metaphors to help us relate to the specific concepts. A super optimistic and cheerful, but deeply thoughtful guy, that was a memorable experience. Be sure to book in advance, the hut can only hold 8-9 guests and it only happens twice a week (this is complimentary with your stay).

We didn't try the spa as the massage prices seemed a bit high, but the area did look beautifully-designed. As others have noted, it's about a 10 minute walk from the far end of the hotel to the beach, so you may want to reserve a pair of complimentary bikes as soon as you arrive, or even before if possible. We were told there was a waiting list, but then a pair appeared the same day, so no problem.

I'd also highly recommend taking the trip to Tulum to see the Mayan ruins there, it's only a half-day, unlike Chichen Itza, and the guide was very colourful and informed. Now I can (sort of) count in Mayan! You can book and pay for the tickets right onsite at the concierge station near the beach.

A couple of small things that the hotel could do to improve operations: 1) make sure that all the golf-carts using the main road at night have their headlights on, both passenger and maintenance.
2) as others have pointed out, it seemed like they use sewer/waste water to irrigate the lawns, which does create a bit of a stink. I don't know if there is another option, but the smell was strong.
3) a laminated plastic card with instructions for managing the two remotes for the TV would avoid the complaints I've seen in some of the reviews about getting the TV/DVD player to work (we did have to fiddle a bit, but the same at home!).

We may have gotten lucky, there was no heavy sales pitch at any time, just the mention from the concierge on the first day about a 'returning guests program' which we didn't do (I found out it's a guided tour through the different kinds of rooms).

So in summary, this was what the resort billed itself as: peaceful and relaxing, a great place for a couple to get away and unwind. Everything seemed classy, elegant and well-designed. As all have noted, the strongest of all the many selling-points is the incredibly-friendly and hard-working staff, I couldn’t imagine a better place to take a week off, and hope to return as soon as possible! Thanks Blue Diamond! Peter and Eric

Room Tip: Our Jr.Patio Suite was large and single-story, well-secluded and quiet, with excellent water pressure. Room 335; nice patio art outside the front door too!
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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4  Thank Peter S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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