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“Nice resort lacking service”

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BlueBay Grand Esmeralda
Ranked #98 of 213 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Reviewed January 8, 2014

Stayed at the Blue Bay Grand Emerelda and the time at the resort was pretty good. Our check in was not very enjoyable. When we arrived we were greeted with a smile and a drink. From there ir went down hill. We waited in a line at the front desk for about 20 minutes, after we were checked in we were told to give our check in ticket to the valet so they could take us to our room with our bags. When we got there we were told to go to the sports bar and there is a shuttle you can take. We had no idea wher pn the resort property this was so we wondered around a while. Finally we say a shuttle and asked if this goes to our building. We were told yes and hopped on. When we got to a shuttle stop it was announced that we are here. We then walked the final 1/4 mile or so and found our room.
During our stay the staff in the main a la carte restaurants was pretty good and the staff at the pool and bars was decent as well. However the staff at the buffet was not too friendly and it seemed like they just wanted to get us through the breakfast/lunch experience as fast as possible.
Then came checkout and this really left us feeling bad about the trip.I had requested our bags to be picked up at 11:30. When no one arrived I went down to the concierge and was told that I should bring the bags to them and that a shuttle would be there shortly. We ended up walking to the main reception area (about a half a mile or so. Then the actual check out process started. This experience took almost an hour!!! They were so disorganized both at the front desk and at the valet.
If you expect graet service this is not the place for you.

Room Tip: Try to get a room close to the beach pool. Building 4 or 5
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Superflyfisher51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 7, 2014

Service was the worst I've ever had. I've been to Mexico 11 times and consider myself a laid back person (yoga teacher) almost everyone I came in contact with was rude. Found mold in our room, hotel smelled from stagnant water that surrounds resort, we only had housekeeping one out of the 4 nights we stayed, room service/internet were extra charges, reservations to the restaurant got "lost", etc.etc Traveled for my sisters wedding; officiant barely spoke English and read from a script, tried to move the time of the wedding without informing guests, their romantic breakfast consisted of cereal and romantic dinner reservation was canceled without notice. I will never book another vacation without reading reviews. I wish I could warn guests in some other way. Any positive reviews for this hotel have to be from local residents. Please please never vacation or book your wedding here.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with family
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5  Thank Stephanie G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2014

We have just spent New Years there. The resort was very clean and beautiful. The only set back was my needing more spanish to get what I needed. Once I found a staff member with more English than my Spanish everything was good. I did think that all inclusive meant all food, but there was an up charge for Rack of Lamb and Lobster.

Room Tip: All the rooms were in a good setting. We belong to CircleOne so we had a Ocean View room, but the ga...
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Maseratisgts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2014

I was a little skeptical going into this trip based on some of the reviews, but we returned from Blue Bay last night and had a great week with our two kids, two and six.

We found the service at the resort to be very good. It was a little slow on occasion, but other times it was quicker than we expected. The variety and quality of the food was very good. We didn't have any problems making reservations at the restaurants and liked the Mexican and Seafood restaurants the best. The bartenders at the swing bar by the pool/beach were the best.

There are some parts of the property that have a bit of a smell, but it is surrounded by mangrove and really very pretty. The pool is great and we didn't have any problems getting chairs each day. If you are all about the beach, this might not be the best resort for you. The beach is nice and our kids had a great time building sand castles and hanging out, but the water in that area is not crystal clear like you see in other parts of Mexico.

Yes, the resort is large and a little spread out, but even with the two kids, we enjoyed walking and could always grab a seat on one of the little shuttles if desired. With the amount of food and drink available at this resort, the walking is a good thing!

Carlito and Jose in the kids club are awesome. Our six-year old had a blast hanging out with them and they would go on stage each night to perform some songs. We haven't stayed at another all-inclusive resort where the kids club was included, so this was a very nice option to have. Again, cannot say enough about the guys that work in there. The overall activities by the pool were fun and the night time entertainment was, well, entertaining. We especially liked the Michael Jackson tribute night. We didn't make it to the NYE party because our kids were wiped out from the sun, but it sounded like a lot of fun - music and fireworks until 4am.

Our room was very clean, and yes, there was a little bit of a musty smell, but it has rained a lot there recently and we really didn't find it to be an issue. We were in building 5 on the first floor which was a great location to the pool.

My husband and I were both able to use wifi on our phones for the week for $14 (total).

Overall, I would like to visit other resorts in the area, but I would recommend Blue Bay and I would visit there again as well.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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5  Thank Jenpasterick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2014

The only good thing on this resort is the food, but having all inclusive trip, you still have to pay extra to get an Angus steak from the menu at 300 pesos or a better wine. I did not see one building with screen doors nor screen windows. Many buildings like the Festival had no windows at all letting the bad smell from flushing toilets in, one evening the wind was pushing the bad smell so much that we had to leave before the end of the show. Cross the small bridge between bldg 4 and 5; you have either to run or block your nose (We did both) to cross it, the smell is so strong of human waste, it is not a smell or a swamp, trust me, it's horrible. Further down the beach on the right where you can rent a seadoo, the smell of toilet is there as well. I believe the resort is dumping all human waste in all their surrounding swamps and the Carabian sea...Yerk !

As most of the buildings have no main doors, just corridors to get in and out, being on the first floor closed to the entrance, like many other tenants we woke up with water in our room beause the rain get inside the building by these opened entrances and went under our room door, so like many others we spent two weeks changing the towel on the floor to prevent water to come in. The first night our air condition unit was leaking all night, since the unit is inside, so we have to use another towel on the floor to absord, when the towel is full of water at 03:00 in the night, you could hear PLUNK, PLUNK.... so we changed the towel and call service in the morning, which as rectified. The AC unit is block at 17, but it feel like 22 in the room...... not convenient.

We wanted to use their nice good looking Spa facility, when we found out that we have to pay and the water in all the pool are not even temperature control, too cold sorry !

The beach as so much black dead alges pushed on the sand that I saw a small girl coming out the water with many on her shoulders which her parents had to bring her under a pool shower. And when the wind shifted you can get that shocking smell of human waste.

Being only a beer drinker I was stuck to drink their only draft beer they had, just taste like water, it is so diluted with water that you can not get the white brew on top, it's so flat. You can not buy any other beer because there are none to buy, you have to go to the store to buy some, or use your daily 4 free beer bottles (named Superior) from your room's fridge. My wife never drink more then 2 alcoholic brevages and she get a feeling, believe me, it took 8 to 10 different drinks before she starts to feel something, we strongly believe that they add water to their bottle of alcool. Don't go get there to get drunk, you just end up more to the washroom.

They are so cheap, anything to save a buck. We paid closed to $6,000 for this 2 weeks for two persons that you would expect much more from a so called 4 stars resort. I have been read many of the reviews on the side here, I was surprises to find out good comments.

Trust me everyone, DON'T go there. I am in process to sue NoliTours and AirTransat for this misadventure.

Room Tip: Never go to this resort, I would recommend this place even to my best ennemy
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Sylvain T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2014

room service was bad 2 days did not leave towels for a shower.food was Luke warm to cold and the same food every day.this was a 4 or 5 star resort noway this was maybe a 1 star resort.have have to make reservations every day for the following to eat supper and if you forget to make reservations then you go hungry.they also lost my passport and i found it outside of our building the following mourning but in the mean time they could care less about it telling me that i would not have a problem getting out of Mexico and back in the united states what b.s. they tried telling me because all they care about is your money and nothing else.if you want bad service and food this is the place to be at for x-mas . we spent from December 21-30 2013 and could not wait to get the hell out of there and get back home.this was our worst vacation ever would not ever go back.you better think twice about this place . this place will also try to suck you into a time share starting with a v.i.p. breakfast which is the same at all the restaurants that serve the food day after day Luke warm to cold. and don't believe you get domestic and international beverages one kind of beer only and only coke products.

Room Tip: stay away from this place you will be trowing your monet away.
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank tony f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2014

Our family of 10 people just stayed at this resort from 12/28/2013 to 1/04/2014.
We all had rooms close to each other in building 1 "Tulum"
The rooms were comfortable, clean and spacious. Other reviewers have mentioned an objectionable smell occasionally outside of the building. We noticed this as well. This appears to be be due to the mangrove swamps that are near the building. However, the rooms have air-conditioning and fans. The smell was never noticeable in the rooms. We liked staying in this building because it was just a short walk to the fabulous pool, the ocean and the large buffet building.
You should make sure that the sliding doors have not been left partially open by the cleaning staff. That happened to one of our families and several people had mosquito bites.
The food at this resort was excellent. Much better than in some other inclusive resorts where we have stayed in the past.
The staff was universally friendly and helpful.
The pool area is huge and well maintained. We spent several days there in the sun. Never had any trouble reserving chairs near the pool.
The beach is narrow in some areas and sand bags can be seen in spots. These have been placed to preserve the width of the beach. We enjoyed walking on the beach and saw lots of people swim in the ocean. However, we preferred to swim in the pool.
The resort has great wireless Internet access. The fee for this service is $2.00 a day per device. In other words you cannot use the same password to access the Internet from your phone and from your computer.
We paid for this service for our computer and for two phones for 7 days. Using this service, we were able to use the WiFi service to make free calls to home. Worked flawlessly.
I've included a pictures of the pool area and the beach. These pictures were taken early in the morning two days ago.
We would definitely recommend this resort,

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with family
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6  Thank NewEnglanTraveler115
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about BlueBay Grand Esmeralda

Address: Carretera Federal Chetumal- Puerto Juarez km 300 | Camino a la Pileta, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#50 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#54 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#57 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#68 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#78 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $155 - $644 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — BlueBay Grand Esmeralda 4*
Number of rooms: 979
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideally located in an area of 445 acres in a prime position on the beach on the Riviera Maya, BlueBay Grand Esmeralda combines elegant Mayan features with contemporary design and a wide range of service to suit the most discerning traveller. BlueBay Grand Esmeralda provides a relaxed atmosphere for holiday makers. The hotel features 979 elegant and well-appointed rooms and suites with the option of a sea or garden view. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blue Bay Esmeralda
Bluebay Grand Esmeralda Hotel
Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda Riviera Maya
Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda Mayan Riviera
Grand Esmeralda
Blue Bay Grand Esmerelda
Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda Resort
Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda Beach Resort Spa
Blue Bay Esmerelda
BlueBay Grand Esmeralda Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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