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“Don't go because I want it all to myself”

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Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel
Ranked #36 of 213 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 5, 2013

From the minute we arrived in the breathtaking open-air lobby area until we were happily settled into our room I think the words "paradise" may have escaped our lips over a dozen times. Our jaws dropped as we were shown around our Lagoon Suite (where the bathroom alone is bigger than the living room in our NYC apartment).

I should start this by saying if you're looking for a party hotel with constant entertainment and loud people and a "scene" this is not for you. If you are looking to escape everything and hear the sounds of ocean waves and jungle birds, enjoy ceviche on the beach with a book and quiet 5-course meals by a backlit lagoon in the jungle then this is the place you're looking for.

Either Mexico's weather people aren't very good or else this place is just in any area where the weather can suddenly change in an instant right there and not in the surrounding areas because often times the forecast for the area would say it would be a sunny day or even that it was currently sunny but we got a fair amount of rain and sudden downpours (about 80% of the trip was cloudy or rainy). Even with the occasional bad weather in the area this time of year this resort is so relaxing and tranquil. There are no huge looming buildings or loud bright bustling lobbies, no children running around screaming or peeing in the pool, no buffets, no elevators to wait for - it basically felt like you lived in your own little private jungle villa in a quiet neighborhood off a private winding path connecting you with the beach.

I saw some other people's complaints on here I wanted to address. Some people had said the beach was too windy. I've been to hundreds of beaches in my travels and I would surmise to say 95% of them are pretty windy. There is actually a scientific reason for this involving the cool air in the water and the hot air above ground - it's not that this being a bad beach or a bad location. Some said the beach was rocky or has too much seaweed. There does seem to be about 5 feet of an area with medium-sized (but smooth) rocks you need to walk past to really get out into the water but once you're there the sand under your feet is so smooth it's almost clay-like and on the whole this was less rocky than any American beach I have ever been to and many island beaches as well. As far as seaweed, this is the sea. Again it is unavoidable. It comes and goes with storms and currents and as far as I know there is not a beach in the world which does not have days where seaweed washes up. Regardless of this, the resort had someone out on the beach every day raking the seaweed and rocks that would occasionally wash up and 90% of the time the waters were tranquil and clear turquoise blue. We got in the water many times and it was incredibly warm, even in January.

Someone said something in a review about a lizzard being in their room. We had one in our room at one point too (because we were constantly leaving our giant sliding glass doors open to enjoy the fresh air and breeze). Its the jungle, isn't that sort of the point of staying in a natural place like this? If you're not comfortable with the possibility of a tiny little lizzard possibly crawling up on to your gigantic private terrace and coming into your open door then maybe you should go stay in some mega-mall type place with a mammoth building, a staff of 700 and an elevator and a 35th floor room because this is not that place.

The staff were all amazing - I am terrible with names and wish I could remember to mention their names on here but there wasn't a single person we encountered who was any less than incredibly helpful and pleasant. Yoga was cancelled on the day we signed up for it but we did do the Temezcal ceremony and although there were times it was pretty intense and I questioned whether I could finish it, in the end I did and felt like I had achieved something great that I will never forget.

A few people on here mentioned that it was a nuisance that you have to ask the hotel staff to fill up your outdoor roman tub 30 minutes in advance. True, they do tell you that if you want to use it you should call them to fill it but guess what, it's just set up like a normal tub. If you want to use it my best suggestion is that you push the plug down, turn the water on, fill it, and use it! I used it 3 times (without the staff filling it for me) and it was fantastic. We always had hot water in our showers as well - sometimes it fluctuated and it wasn't the hottest water, but really not a big deal.

Our single only complaint would be that the bed was incredibly loud. We didn't sleep that restfully because any time one of us so much as moved our arm the bed made a huge creaking sound and would wake the other one up. We had great blackout curtains, perfect climate control (you have to make sure all doors in your room and bathroom that go to the outside are shut or else the A/C won't come on), adjustable ambient mood lighting available on every fixture in every corner of the room, and 3 sets of doors/rooms between the main room and the bathroom (which I appreciate for privacy when using the bathroom).

The food was top-notch. People saying they were expecting more Mexican food is like someone coming to America and saying they were expecting more hot dogs and hamburgers. It's not like all Mexicans eat are tacos and burritos. The food had a heavy Mayan/Mexican influence with lots of fresh squeezed juices in creative varieties, I saw the use of pumpkin many times, fresh fish was always an active part of every menu, as was avocado, jalapeno, corn, fresh cilantro and many other obvious "Mexican" flavors mixed with various pastas, steaks, and even a Mexican pizza option one night (which as an NY-er might I say was surprisingly delicious). As everyone else has mentioned, the breakfasts were truly the stand out meal - very fresh with multiple courses and so many options (the coffee is so good too!).

There was hardly anyone in the hotel when we were there - it was rare to see anyone in the pool or hot tub at the same time you were and most of the time we felt like we had the beach to ourselves. We were so thrilled with our stay (even with the constant rain) that we're already saving up to come back. I sort of wish they sold condos so I could just live there.

Room Tip: Lagoon Suites seem to be the same building style/layout and options as the Cenote Suites but the Cen...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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13  Thank Heather D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 2, 2013

We stayed at this hotel because of friends that referred us, that had stayed here when it was a Mandarin Oriental. We were unsure if the service had been maintained and it was exceptional!

From check in (where there offer you free international calls) to check out (where they drive you to the airport) it was a dream. They drive you to your villa in a golf cart and they were easy to access and didn't take long to come when you wanted to move.

The room was beautiful, what a view of the cenote! They had upgraded us which was nice surprise. There were ants in the bathroom that grossed me out but after they were taken care of they didn't come back.

The pool area is stunning and the food is delicious. Room service and the restaurants. The concierge was so nice and would call to remind you to make a reservation. I was ill one day and they would call to see if I needed anything which was very nice.

The pool and the beach is stunning. The crowd is cool and the atmosphere was perfect for us.

We would venture to Playa town at night and its a short trip but getting a cab took up to 45 minutes so order it waaaaay in advance!

I would definitely recommend this hotel to everyone I know.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank K C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Being direct in my comments, I recommend.
We had some problems that I will tell. They have some bicycles for guests' use. There could be more, which would be useful for optimizing the use of golf carts. I´ve stayed in hotels where the sunscreen was given free, they could do the same, it is a simple kindness.
Our air conditioning was not working properly, the control seemed broken, which did not prevent to cool the room, but could not control the temperature, which was reported on the day we arrived and until the day we left unsolved.
For a whole day we were without hot water. Warned us of the problem, we understand, but could have offered something for the inconvenience, as credit at the spa or something.
I think the most important thing missing in the room is na efficient blackout to avoid us being awakened by the Sun. The hotel's website is not very good, could be improved. We saw that there were amennities of Bulgari, which was not true. One day in the pool in the late afternoon was no towels, which seemed a serious error, especially in time when they are needed.
good points: The hotel itself is great, the staff are fantastic, the food is very good, as are the drinks. The fact of being a la carte food is really great. The dishes are well made and delicious The cleanliness of the rooms and throughout the hotel. The ability to make international calls for free.
Special thanks to Omar and Jose, who helped us with tickets for David Guetta. Dagoberto, Christian, Joseph and Atila were always polite and served us well in the pool bar and in the lobby for Jesus, always smiling and helpful.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with bikes, they will be helpful.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank Gusta1979
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

My wife and I recently stayed at the BD for 3 nights and had a great time - it was her birthday. Have stayed at many 4 and 5 star all inclusive resorts in the past and the food here was very good comparatively speaking...especially breakfast and lunch and had a high end liquor/beer selection to boot! We had a minor maintenance issue with our 1st room but was fixed quickly and because it wasn't busy, we were upgraded to a suite on the beach. Overall the rooms and grounds are beautiful and the staff couldn't be friendlier. Everyone that I informed about my wife's bday tried to make it as memorable as possible...especially Jose - thanks Jose. If you are looking for a smaller boutique, adults only all inclusive, this is a great option and good value. My only gripe was the additional charge for room service and the spa prices seemed a little high. We would definitely go back!

Room Tip: If its not busy, request an upgrade.
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Chris O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

I was at the Blue Diamond a few weeks ago and loved it!
Pros:
- the premises are beautiful and the gardens luxuriant
- the rooms are very spacious, clean, and extremely well decorated
- the swimming pool area (my favorite), has 3 pools: a cold, a warm and a hot one
- the restaurants are beautiful and the food is very good
- the service is excellent (staff comes twice a day in your room to clean it)
- it's very well located, close to playa del carmen village
Fortunately, I have no cons for this hotel!
Definitely a must if you like classy and luxurious places for your vacation.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Sarah_Travel_World
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2013

We stayed at Blue Diamond for one week in January and of all the resorts we have been on, and it's quite a few, this resort by far has excelled in all areas and has been our best holiday.

The food was not only presented professionally, it was amazing. As soon as we woke up we were looking forward to breakfast which was our favourite meal of the day. My partner liked the choice to order healthy and they accommodated her "off menu" requests and did it perfectly with no issues. The blended fruit drinks were so good. Every cup of coffee was delicious. My favourite was eggs "Motul"- eggs over easy, on salsa with ham, on refried beans, on a tortilla. The pear/ginger oatmeal was awesome. Lunches were more casual but if you felt like hanging at the pool they would bring you menus right to your lounge chair. You can request both menus from Aquamarine and Cheviche, if you prefer.
Dinners alternated between two restaurants Auquamarine and Ambar. Ambar was more formal and the space was really slick. We met some couples at the resort and had a blast at both restaurants. The waiters honestly made the evenings roll. They made us custom flaming drinks with flare and really treated us well. The food at both locations were top notch. We had some great meals. Presentation again was a delight. We enjoyed Aquamarine because you could hear the surf while you were eating. The ambiance at Ambar was exceptional. Wine served with dinner is pretty good and I was surprised that they served the red wine cold. Guess that's the way in Mexico but all I had to do was mention it once to my waiter, and they set aside a room temperature bottle (or two) each evening after that.

On to the service. Blue Diamond defines service. From the moment we arrived, they had a drink waiting for us, knew us by name and made the check in seamless. Everyone on the resort seemed happy to work there and all staff said hello with a smile and were very genuine. We had planned to possibly upgrade our room when we got there but once we saw the room (Laguna Suites) we knew we weren't going anywhere. It was spectacular. We had a 4 poster king bed with a beautiful balcony overlooking the lagoon. Great to see when you wake up. The bathrooms were so spacious and the his and her rain showers were very modern. There was an out door tub but we never used it. We preferred the hot tub by the pool with Margaritas ;). We had an issue with hot water and they addressed it within minutes!! Minutes!! One night the power went out late in the evening for a couple hours. No issues we just went to bed. They called the next morning to make sure there were no issues. Very professional. They do ask as your holiday progresses how are things and ask if there are any problems. On our first day one vacationer happened to get stung by a wasp. Within a minute of notifying the bartender he showed up with a glass of ice and called the life guard over immediately to tend to her.

On the topic of service I must mention some of the staff as they made our stay something so memorable. Jesus at reception was very nice. Jose our concierge met us right when we sat at the bar after we checked in. He is really an amazing person and we sincerely hope to see him at Blue Diamond when we come back. Such a great guy. Some of the waiters and bartenders, Jesus, Jose, Frederico, Dago, and the one and only Cesar!! These guys are so much fun. Cesar was a blast and made us this huge drink made out of an actual pineapple all dressed up and garnished. He was a character and really made our days at the bar so much fun. Really all the the waiters and bartenders were a blast. They know how to take care of you. The hostess at Aquamarine was so sweet and really a pleasure to speak to. There are so many other names we didn't recall and they all truly deserve mention.

The decor was very modern and suited our tastes very well. I believe the resort was re-vamped recently and it shows.
The grounds were completely our style. Spread out, not crowded and scenic. You have access to a golf cart to get around the main path to go from the rooms to the beach or restaurants, but we really enjoy walking so if there wasn't a cart we started walking and eventually one would show up in a few minutes. Everyone would always ask if we needed a lift. It rained some days so we called up a cart to take us to dinner no problem. It showed up on time. If you don't like to walk, stick to the 800+ unit, busy, buffet style resorts. BTW, all food was a la carte. No buffet crap here.
We never had to get to the pool at 6AM and drop a towel to "claim" your lounge chair. It is really not like that. If you are walking around the resort walk down to the Cenote (unless your unit overlooks it of course). It is really cool to see. The resort is very lush and staff constantly tend to it and is very well maintained.

The spa was huge! It consisted of 2 buildings and was very enjoyable. We only did the steam and the soak but couples that tried other services told us they enjoyed it very much. No complaints. There was an outdoor pool and relaxation area which was really nice, but no bar. The gym exceeded our expectations. This is one area we are very fussy about and you generally don't find gyms with newer equipment in the bigger resorts. Not too many free weights, but new cardio equipment (treadmills and elipiticals) and a very cool cable system that allows you to work most body parts. Very unique and modern...we were skeptical of the cable system at first but found it to be a great workout. They also keep it stocked with water, fruit, towels, and fresh ice tea.

The beach has had some wear and tear due to heavy surf/weather conditions, but they worked daily raking up the sand. Believe us, when you sit in the very comfortable lounge chairs with a drink in hand and staring at the ocean, you don't even notice it (Cesar never let your drink run dry). The main pool could be a little warmer, but it's refreshing for a quick dip to escape the warm sunshine.

Check out was quick and easy and we were expecting to have some extra charges to settle, but to our delight and surprise, we didn't owe anything.

This holiday was such an experience we will be returning here for our wedding. We can't imagine a nicer location than paradise to celebrate our occasion.

We have read some reviews and simply cannot fathom a bad time here. Perhaps it isn't the resort for some, but when you have decor, good food, impeccable grounds, and 5 star service how can you go wrong. We got to know alot of the staff and they seem to all work well together so we only hope they all stay for a while as they have something very unique at Blue Diamond. If you want to feel like part of a family, stay here. All the couples we met (and some that we are staying in touch with) are planning to return. They were all very impressed with the service.

Rob and Lisa
Toronto, Ontario

Room Tip: All rooms are beautiful here. Some are closer to the gym/spa and others to the beach and restaurant...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Robert A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2013

I booked this trip expecting the hotel to be good/decent regarding service/amenities/settings. In all three areas it far exceeded expectations. We stayed for 4 nights, 5 days.

In terms of service, all the staff fro(bellman who collects bags, front desk who went out of their way to print documents for us, beach staff who would RUN to make sure everyone got their food/drinks as quickly as possible, and even the cleaning stuff) all were impeccable and friendly. They went above and beyond to ensure our satisfaction. For example, my suitcase had gotten jammed and the bellman noticed this and offered to help me fix it once we had unpacked. Another example, we called for a wake up call at 5am to leave for an excursion. The lady who answered also offered to place an order for an in-room breakfast, knowing that we would miss the included breakfast that starts at 7am.

In terms of amenities and rooms. We stayed in a lagoon suite. The room is HUGE. Loved the double shower heads and spaciousness of the bedroom and bathroom. The outside tub is OK, though not a highlight as I felt it was a little too "forced" in terms of romanticness.

Some guests have commented that the resort is large which is true. It is quite long though the golf carts come almost immediatedly when you call for them. All the bikes were reserved so if you want a bike I would say book ahead of time!

A must do is the Temazcal, though if you are sensitive to heat and claustrophobic then you should skip it. Otherwise, it is wonderful and challenges and cleanses both the mind and spirit.

The pool area and beach area look like they come out of a travel magazine if the day is bright and sunny. A little less dreamlike when it is cloudy but really overall everything is very clean, bright and inviting.

Breakfast is by far the best meal. Loved all the fresh juices in the morning that are made to order.

Room Tip: Laguna rooms are closer to the beach and restaurants
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Lillian T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel

Address: Km. 298-816, Carretera Federal 307 | Chetumal-Puerto Juarez, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Blue Diamond Riviera Maya)
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 Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#20 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#29 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#36 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $411 - $1,358 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 128
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On the pristine coast of the world famous Riviera Maya, Blue Diamond Riviera Maya is a sanctuary of breathtaking beauty and peace, surrounded by nature mixed with luxury. This exclusive hideaway is set in 36 acres of lush tropical jungle, well manicured gardens and a spectacular palm filled white sandy beaches along the turquoise – colored Caribbean Sea, offering unparalleled pampering and rejuvenation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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