My husband, my son and I stayed at the Fairmont from August 6-13. We traveled with 4 other families: Total: 10 adults, 9 kids (ranging from 2-11, all boys).
We arrived in the dark, around 7pm. We were greeted with a cold fruity ice tea and an ice cold washcloth. It was dark and we couldn't see a view of the the beach. Bummer! Where's the beach? Then the mosquitoes greeted us. OUCH! OUCH! We finally got to our room. One bed and a crib in there. Hello, I have an 11 year-old. So we move again. Our other friends had issues with a moldy smell in the 100's room. They move too. We finally settle in 518. Two other families settle in 517 and 514. These are close to the main pool, the market, and La Laguna restaurant and bar. So it's a good location for us. The rest stayed in the 600's. No gripes there (that I know of).
The Beach: It's far from our room, unless you are a die hard athlete and love to walk in the heat with mosquitoes feasting on your yummy hot body (let's all have a visual). We opted for the tram. They are frequent and the men who drive them are all so nice. Don't sweat it (good luck with the sweating part), they will be there soon enough, seriously. Oh ya, this is about the beach. The beach in front of the Fairmont is a clean narrow white sand beach with rocky, broken coral and shells at the water's edge with soft sand. There's broken glass occasionally (sharp, not tumbled sea glass). Bring your water shoes. I wore my ugly Tevas everywhere (in the water too). I was the only nut case doing this. So much for fashion (they are comfortable). One of our friends got a cut on his foot. He got it looked at by a doctor in the hotel. Two hundred dollars later... He was told to go to the ER for stitches on a superficial wound. My husband and I told him to forget about it (we have a medical background). We applied "stuff" and let is dry. He is still alive and the wound has healed. (Disclaimer: You might not be so lucky. Know yourself. Bring your doctor friend with you. Let him pay. HAHA! ) There are palapas and food service on the beach. During the first two days some of our friends belly ached about the speed of the service. You're gonna have to chill out. Your margarita is coming! Really! If you think they forgot. Kindly remind them. All of the wait staff at the beach were wonderful. Tweak your brain. Leave your nasty self at home. Like one of the mommies in our group said, "Negativity attracts negativity." Watch your food. Occasionally, a raccoon comes and attacks the food. So eat all your food right away or else the critters will get to it before you do. The ocean was calm in the morning. Later in the day, the winds kicked up and it got choppy but the water temperature was always nice and warm. It rained cats and dogs once and I had to take shelter behind a chair and covered myself with a towel and read a book.
The room: Nice. Clean. I forgot to mention to the hotel they have termites. They show up around the tub, dead at the end of the day. We saw a small lizard running in our room. Some might freak out but that is really a none issue to me. I'm from the tropics. It's typical. We saw a coati on our balcony. Lots of birds around the property. Real pretty ones too. I know I'm talking about nature... Sorry back to the room... Beds are comfy, clean, white, TV has some English and Spanish channels. There's a fridge but it's empty. They give you lots of water. We put it in the fridge so they are cold when we want a drink. They have turn down service and they swap out your wet towels but where's my little chocolate? I had to buy my own. The shower is one of those rain showers from above. Good water pressure. We were on the second floor of one of the 2 story casitas.
Gym: Nice. I worked out once due to guilt from too much eating and lounging. Good equipment with treadmill, ellipticals (sp?), weights and machines. Good service there.
Food: It's not over the top amazing but it's good. One my favorites was the fish ceviche. La Laguna has a buffet for breakfast. The beach restaurant has a breakfast buffet as well. The beach one has less selections and it's $US10 cheaper. We ate at the beach restaurant for dinner once. We had mixed reviews all around. So it's not perfect but I'm all good with it. We had dinner at the Rosewood Casa del Lago. Too expensive. My paella had crunchy rice. Not worth the money. We went to Playa del Carmen for several dinners. There are many nice restaurants there. The concierge can reserve a restaurant for you. We ate at Aldea de Corazon and Sur Argentina. We ate at an Italian restaurant too.
Kid's Club: Our little friend's stayed there during some afternoons so some of the mommies can replenish their alcohol levels. I didn't hear any gripes. The big kids (7-11) were not interested. they preferred playing at the beach or going down the water slide located in the main pool.
Bikes: Adults can grab any bike they see and ride it. Children must bring an adult with them and sign a waiver at the hut near the spa before they can ride a bike. All children's bikes are taken at night and checked. Children must go back to the hut everyday to get a bike. Shorter people might see if they can ride a kid's bike. The one I had was a little high for you. I saw a lady riding a kid's bike.
Grounds: The grounds are nicely kept. It is quite different than most of the resorts we have stayed at. It's not open with a big pool in the middle. The casitas dot the resort and paths meander along the sides of canals. Bridges connect the the roads together. Our family learned to love the locale. It's just beautiful. Many reviewers articulate it much better than I do. If you want a different experience in Playa del Carmen, this place might be for you. You can bike around or just ride the tram everywhere and experience the beautiful scenery. The biggest downer for me was the mosquitoes. I'm a mosquito magnet. I learned to love the scent of herbal bug repellant although I must confess I had to resort to Deet products because i was bombarded by mosquito bites in the beginning. They do sell Off bug spray in the market.
Spa: Big bummer. We did not use the spa.
Overall: My husband and his buddies got a great deal from Expedia. It wasn't all-inclusive. That would have been nice if it was. Some of our friends thought that it was expensive but I think that it was a good deal even without the all-inclusive plan. This resort had some really busy days with plenty of families. All these people could not all be wrong. We went to visit the Rosewood and it was super quite. I ask someone there and he said they were at 40% of capacity. Would I go back? That's the ultimate question. Sure. Would I recommend it to someone? Yes I would.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The 45 acre Fairmont Mayakoba, Riviera Maya, a AAA 5 Diamond Award property, boasts 401 rooms and suites, including a collection of beach and lagoon casitas, offering guests extraordinary views of the grounds. Guests at Fairmont Mayakoba can take advantage of several recreational activities on property including exploring nature trails on foot or BMW bikes, scenic boat tours on lanchas through crystal clear canals, sunbathing on the soft white-sand beach or at one of the property's several pools, non-motorized watersports (kayaks and catamarans), outdoor tennis and paddle courts, golfing on the renowned El Camaleon golf course (host to the only official PGA TOUR event in Mexico), lessons at the Jim McLean Golf School or being pampered with signature Mayan treatments at the luxurious Willow Stream Spa. Children and teens have a space just for them at the Discovery Club or at the Teens Room by Sony PlayStation(R). Fairmont Mayakoba's commitment to the environment has earned the resort several awards and accolades including a seal of verification by Rainforest Alliance. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Fairmont Mayakoba Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Fairmont Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Fairmont Playa Del Carmen
- Playa Del Carmen Fairmont
- Fairmont Mayakoba Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico