We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Nearby Hotels
Reviews (4,418)
Filter reviews
4,418 results
Traveler rating
2,887
1,017
312
116
86
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
2,887
1,017
312
116
86
Show reviews that mention
All reviewslos muralestime sharethomas moorelap poolstaco partydive balamprime rib nightall inclusive packageall inclusive guestsfull kitchenwelcome partyshrimp tacosall inclusive planpool barroom servicefree shuttleorder off the menu
Filter
Updating list...
3,501 - 3,506 of 4,418 reviews
Reviewed May 19, 2011

The staff is well trained and attentive. Many amenities . . . too many to use! The beach is beautiful with many 'palapas' and chaise lounges.
The Spa is beautiful and the restaurants have varied menus. The on-site "mercado" is well stocked with moderate wines. The concierge can find what you need if it isn't on site!

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank MAC553
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2011

We just returned from the Royal Haciendas and absolutely loved it. As everyone else has stated, the resort is lovely and unbelievably clean. We did an exchange through Interval International for the full 2 bedroom unit. We have stayed at two other Royal Resorts and really liked this one.
I will try to give some information that others have not so as to be useful to other exchangers. We did receive the unit number that was indicated with II and it was a great room. We were on the top floor (fourth) with an ocean view to the side, looking down upon the central grounds. Because we were on the top floor, it was very private and also had the extra high ceilings. It was extremely quiet, we never once heard any neighbors around us. I never saw any insects other than an ant or two down at the beach, nor any lizards. This is a huge deal to me since I hate large bugs! Maybe it was the time of year we visted but we never saw a single cockroach (palmetto bug) anywhere we went the whole trip, which is very unusual for the tropics.
We arrived around noon on Saturday and check-in was a breeze. We were directed to a special desk for exchangers but we had no wait and it went very smoothly. Our room was still being cleaned but we were given our keys and told we could go on up if we wanted to. We checked it out, then went down for lunch and drinks. By the time we finished lunch, our maid was done and we were able to settle in (around 1:30). Perfect. We were on the beach by 2:00!
Everyone is assigned a personal concierge for the week. Our guy was very friendly and not too pushy about asking if we wanted to do a timeshare meeting. We politely declined and that was the end of it. He never bothered us again. Whenever we wanted to make shuttle reservations or dinner reservations in town, we just called him and he took care of it immediately.
The unit has magnifying makeup mirrors in both bathrooms, which is really great for us women. The master bath has an amazing walk-in shower that is perfect, great water pressure and plenty of hot water. The jacuzzi tub on the balcony is wonderful, we used it every night. It fills up in about 5 minutes. Very romantic!
We did have 2 power outages during the week but it happened during the day and did not affect us other than limiting the bar food and drink choices while the power was out. The pool bar service is great, we were served every day down on the beach, you just put up your flag and they come. The happy hour drinks were good and huge! My favorites were the mango daquiris and the mojitos. Cost was only about $5.00 for a grande during happy hour. They also gave you free chips and salsa with your drinks during happy hour and the salsa was great. We found the service all week long to be outstanding wherever we went, on resort and off. There was no delay ever for anything.
The kitchen is well stocked and even has a non-stick pan for cooking eggs. There is no garbage disposal in the sink, which we found irritating and they do not provide paper towels or liquid dish soap for any hand washing of dishes. You can easily buy these at the on-site market. However, we had daily maid service which was great, she did a fantastic job, she even washes out your shower every day. We tipped $5 a day to the maid, she does more than just change your towels. Also, they provide free wi-fi in the units which is a huge benefit for me as I have to check in for work periodically since I am self-employed. The internet connection worked fine the whole week.
The on-site market had everything we needed to make breakfasts and lunches for the week, plus make cocktails. It was not terribly expensive and we were very happy not to have to make a trip into Playa to get get groceries. It is very well stocked. For the convenience and time saving alone, I recommend just using their market.
We never had a problem getting a palapa and chairs at the beach all week, in fact we got a front row one everyday and the earliest we ever went down was 10:30. The pool chairs do fill up fast but we are beach people so we only went to the pool at the end of the day, if at all. The sand is beautiful, white and powder soft and it never gets hot. We stayed in Phase 1 and having checked out the whole beach down both sides quite a ways, I have to say that the Phase 1 beach is by far the best spot. The water is calm and crystal clear. Yes, there are alot of rocky areas but there are also 2 large sandy areas where you can walk out a very long way in clear shallow water. The water in front of Phase 2 is murky and much rougher with seaweed. I would not have been happy with the beach if that had been our only choice. As you walk even further north on the beach the water is even murkier and full of seaweed and seagrass. The beach going south toward Playa is very rocky in the water. So the best spot is dead central in front of Phase 1. We did try snorkeling out here but when we out it was so shallow over the rocks and coral that I cut my knee so we did not go out again. We did spent an entire day snorkeling down in Akumal at Yal-Ku Lagoon and Akumal Bay and that was excellent. We saw a giant turtle, must have been 5 ft. long in Akumal Bay. We hired a taxi driver for the day for $100 and he took us to each place and stayed until we wanted to go to the next place.
I won't go into all the places we ate in Playa other than to mention that you must go to Alux Restaurant. It was closed for a few months but is open again and it is amazing. It is inside a dried cenote/caverns and was really fascinating. The food was fine, not great but not terrible, actually the filet mignons were excellent. But go because it is a setting you won't believe. After our dinner, our waiter took us for a private tour through the caverns and it is just beautiful.
We had an amazing trip and loved everything about it. The weather was perfect all week, not a drop of rain and was in the 80's, although by the last day you could feel it getting hotter and more humid than the whole week had been. We will definitely be going back some day!

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
10  Thank californiadeb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2011

We have stayed at other Royal Resorts and have always loved the service, rooms and cleanliness. This was our first time staying at The Royal Hacienda and this review is compared to the other Royals. Pros: More spread out, more tropical landscaping, and lock-off rooms are nicer (2nd bedroom). Cons: Off-site restaurants/shops are further away, free shuttle to 5th avenue but return by taxi is $12, and tennis courts are situated in the sun all day (from 7am on). Everything else is pretty much comparable to the other Royals (which is very good). Additional comments about the shuttles: You have to reserve your spot and there are only a few different times the shuttles go to 5th avenue. Also try to get the two "shotgun" seats!!

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank FoodLoverValpo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2011

My sister and I stayed at The Royal Haciendas (TRH) in Playa del Carmen (PDC) for the week of April 16-23, 2011 (week before Easter). We booked with them over Expedia and chose the resort after seeing what was included and the age requirement for making a reservation is 25. We weren’t interested in crazy spring break partying. Most of the travelers were older couples whose kids are grown or families with young kids. There weren’t many couples, and we were definitely the only two single travelers together. The resort is so large that you don’t get the feeling there are many people there, although many of the rooms were booked. I had read somewhere that the staff might not be that helpful because of the property being condos for buying rather than a hotel. I found quite the opposite. Everyone seemed even more hospitable, interested in our stay, and extremely helpful.

The resort is enormous and beautiful. All of the villas, landscaping, grounds, pools, shops, etc. are very well cared for. There are two sides to the resort, and both sides are surrounded by the rooms (they call them villas). Each side of the resort has one lap pool, a child’s pool that is 1.5 feet deep, a larger pool (about 4 feet deep) with the swim up bar, and a hot tub. There is also a gym, rec room, tennis court on top of the hotel, bar/pool area inside the hotel (The Rotunda), fancier restaurant (Los Murales), and then the main restaurant (La Palapa) that has a nice menu, buffet, and express/take-out option. Each of the main pools also has a bar/restaurant with seating. There are also sports desks and towel desks for both sides. The sports desks have the scuba tours through Dive Balam (closed on Saturdays), with instructors and equipment. The towel desk offers towels whenever and is open from about 7:30am to 10:30pm. For everything you do at the resort (eat, shop, use towels, etc.), you will be asked to give your villa number. All charges are made to the total room bill and paid at the end of the stay, except for tips. You will receive your final bill the morning the day before you leave, and can pay it that day making check-out easier. After you pay the bill, you can then use credit card or cash. For the towel desk, they will run your card and then keep the white/yellow copies of the charge slip. When you return the towel, they give you the yellow copy for your records. You can check-out and return towels as often as needed.

On each side of the resort are lifeguard stations to watch the beach, flags indicating the level of caution for swimming, and beach chairs with umbrellas. The chairs and umbrellas are available for anyone. They just ask you do not leave you stuff for hours at a time and prevent others from using them. Later in the morning or afternoon, a hostess will give each group a flag to indicate if you need food or drink service, and she will wait on you at the beach. The waves were pretty rough most of the day when we were there, and the flags generally alternated between yellow and red. The lifeguards and beach monitors keep a close eye on the guests to keep everyone out of the water when the flags are red, and especially as night falls. There are a couple of smaller spaces off the beach for swimming, but otherwise the beach has a lot of rocky areas. Don’t let that deter you from visiting, though, because you can walk around the bend to the south toward the Grand Coral and find very wide shallows for great swimming (soft sands, brilliant clear water, no rocks or coral, etc.). We only saw the Grand Coral from the beach, but it seems to be much smaller, less developed or progressing, and maybe condos? There wasn’t much to it, and there were very few people which made for great enjoyment for us. From TRH beach, you can see Cozumel in the distance and approaching cruise ships. You can’t make out the size of the island, but can see the taller buildings.

We booked the junior suite, which is the smaller side of the villa. The floors are all tiled, the walk-in bath/shower is tile, there is a separate dressing area with a double vanity; small kitchenette area with a sink, microwave, refrigerator, basic dishes, and toaster; two double beds, small desk and chair, another small table by the terrace/balcony, large armoire with the TV and drawers, and excellent closet space. Within the closet was the large ironing board and iron, hangers, storage above and below, and a closet safe. We were on the first floor, and therefore had a small terrace that was accessed through sliding doors. There were two chairs and a small table outside to view the resort. The resort has free WiFi, and you will be given the code when you check in. We had no problem using it, and were even able to access it with just my sister’s ipod (not an iphone).

We took the Thomas More transportation shuttle (housed within the resort and other hotels; more comment elsewhere regarding tours). You can Google their website and call/email them directly to set up the transportation. The shuttle will be billed to you room, so you don’t need any money on hand to pay except for tips. We were warned by other travelers online that when you arrive at Cancun airport many people will try to stop you to provide you transportation. The voucher emailed to me in confirmation explained what the Thomas More would be wearing to help differentiate them. Pay close attention to what they say to look for and make sure to leave the airport. If someone stops you while you are still inside, they are not from Thomas More. The Thomas More staff was located just outside the doors (this is after you get your passport stamped, get your luggage, and go through security again for customs). They were wearing short-sleeved dress shirts in bright yellow, with navy pants. You show them your voucher and they hook you up with the shuttle and other parties you’re scheduled with. They will place luggage stickers on each piece and give you copies to claim later from the bellboys at the resort. The shuttle runs every 45 minutes between the hours of about 7am and 7pm, although you should check the times when you are there. The shuttle you arrange only transports between the Cancun airport and The Royal Haciendas (TRH), which means once your shuttle has your party and the other parties scheduled on that shuttle, you go directly to the resort. You will be asked to schedule your return transportation the day before you take your return flight. You can do that at the Thomas More desk in the resort.

When you arrive to The Royal Haciendas, it’s a ways back into the arid jungle/brush, near other major hotels (although you can’t see them from the resort). We often entered at the same entrance as Grand Coral and there are signs for others. The trip from the Cancun airport is partially on highway and partially through town. TRH is not located in the downtown of Playa del Carmen (PDC), but is right on the beach. (More on getting downtown later.)

The front entry is bustling with transportation going in and out, and bellboys. The bellboys will hook all of your luggage going to your room together and deliver it to your room once you’ve checked in and you call them for it to be delivered. At check-in, the staff provided a book that guides to all of the resorts amenities and gives recommendations for tips. A map was given, with the villa number. In the lobby, is the Thomas More travel agency through which you can book the airport shuttle or tours to local ruins, cenotes, towns, excursions, etc. There is an ATM in the lobby that dispenses U.S. dollars for a charge of 60 pesos. The front desk will exchange U.S. dollars into pesos. There is a daily limit on the exchange (maybe $300/day USD) and the week (maybe $1,500 USD). They typically dispense the larger bills of pesos, so you may want to ask for smaller bills. At the time of our trip, the exchange range was about 11-12 pesos per dollar. They were giving 100 peso bills, which meant initially our smallest bills were $10 USD. Some of the local vendors in town and on the excursions may haggle that they cannot make change if they see you only have a larger bill. The smaller bills ($50 pesos and $20 pesos) are useful for tipping.

Also off the lobby, are the spa, market, Rotunda bar, Los Murales restaurant, membership area, and a schedule of activities. We did not visit the spa, Rotunda bar, or Los Murales, so I can’t comment on the services or costs. Los Murales does have the menu posted outside the restaurant, so you are able to check the menu and costs before going inside. The market is a mini-grocery store that offers the basic for all meals (breakfast, fresh fruit and vegetables, frozen meals, juice, soda, milk), snacks, desserts, liquor, souvenirs, a small pharmacy, pool toys, flip-flops, etc. The market is open from about 7:30am until about 10:30pm. Prices are in pesos. Many of the brands are native to Mexico, although some are U.S. brands in Spanish packaging. The prices on Mexican vanilla and honey are reasonable, and better than most of the shops we visited in downtown Playa del Carmen. The honey is real bee honey, and the Yucatan is supposed to have some of the best honey because of the type of bees. Either way, it was better than what we often find on shelves here (most often clover honey) and far less expensive than our pure bee honey. The membership area is where you might meet with the personal host and concierge assigned to you. You will receive cards, notes, and phone calls to join them for welcome parties, taco parties, breakfast, etc. If you choose to visit with them, you’ll hear about the company that owns TRH and your opportunities to become an owner in the property. We did not attend the parties, although we tried to be polite and decline. We booked through Expedia, and were not interested in time share opportunities. You may need to call/visit the membership desk if you want to book a shuttle into the downtown of Playa del Carmen that is at a time not run by the front desk. The other thing that is at the hotel in the middle is a selection of souvenir merchants. They offer many of the same handicraft and jewelry choices as you’ll see in downtown, so you would be better off to wait and see what else you find. They will tell you they are only there for that day, but will magically reappear the next day and thereafter.

Transportation to Playa del Carmen is offered free of charge through the hotel. It is generally provided by taxis the hotel calls and organizes around a schedule. (There are many taxis that stay on hand on the property just around the corner from the entrance. They are readily available as soon as you get to the front steps by the lobby. The front steps staff will call the taxi and set up the transportation for you at that moment. You do not need to schedule ahead.). The first taxi going into PDC is at 10:15 and the last is at 6:30. The last return taxi from PDC to TRH is at 6:00. When you check in, they will give you a schedule, along with the limits on how many people can go at a time. If you want to go in the evening, book early. We went out on the last Friday night, and they had four vans going. The limit was 40 people, and they were booked. The taxis are white with sea green strip on them. They are clearly marked as taxis and have the numbers on the back. TRH staff keeps a close eye on which travelers get into which taxi, and will keep track of the taxi you bring back. This is true for the shuttle if you set it up, or if you book a taxi separately. You can arrange a taxi to many of the local hotels, towns, and excursions. The front steps staff has a table with the estimated costs for those trips. If you want to go into/leave PDC at time that isn’t offered on the shuttles, the cost is about $12USD plus tip. The shuttle drops off and picks up at the same spot near 5th Avenue (the main street for food and shopping). It’s at the same area where the taxis congregate, so they’re easy to find if you choose to go it without the shuttle. There are many warnings on other sights online to be wary of taxis and be sure you take one marked correctly. We were very fortunate with our drivers. They were all courteous and helpful with local recommendations. Most were able to speak basic English and understood our even more basic Spanish.

  • Stayed: April 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
11  Thank sharney29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2011

My family just returned from the Royal Haciendas resort. The grounds are very well maintained, and clean. The condition of the equipment in the villa was wonderful, although my wife thought the bed was hard. Daughter slept on Murphy bed, which was also hard. The linens and towels were nice and there is tile work everywhere. Loved how the villa was outfitted and arranged.
Recommend getting the food in town the first day, but you can get everything you need at the local market, at a bit higher price. The mini kitchen was nicely outfitted, but prepare yourself by getting a cartload of groceries in town and save the $150 extra.
The food at the beach side restaurant was average at best, perhaps a 5-6 out of 10. Never tried the buffet, as it was too little for too much money. The lime soup was good but they need more choice in salads. My daughter became ill from food once. The poolside bar guacamole is great, and the drinks were good as well.
All staff was courteous, well mannered, helpful, and worked with our very limited Spanish to reach understanding.
There were enough social activities to complete and choose from. The surf was posted red or yellow the entire time we were there but we still had plenty to do. Having free internet was very nice, but at reduced capacity. Hotel shuttle capacity to downtown Playa was limited and the staff was reluctant to order more unless demanded. Be prepared to be offered several time-share breakfasts from your 'personal concierge'; we were able to dodge them relatively easily though. There is no night life at the resort, which we appreciated. If we needed to do something, Playa is 10 minutes away. NO SPRING BREAKERS is the rule, and they enforce it well. The evenings on the deck were peaceful and quiet. We did not have enough time to do everything we wanted. Be warned, the resort operates on Mexico time; everything is 10-15 minutes (or more) late.
My wife and daughter completed their open water diving training the week before and were working to complete their open water certifications and I was able to go diving six times. The Dive Balaam shop is staffed with wonderful people; Aurora, Gabby, Carlos, Marcos, Christian and 'Ricco'. The dives were fun, enjoyable, relaxing, and I can’t even estimate how many different species of marine life we saw. Drift dives are a lot of fun.
Don't golf at the Grand Coral, just in front of the resort, until about the middle of May, when they expect to have it finished, and even then ask how many holes are open. There are only 9 holes available right now. It will be nice, but too broken up right now. The resort has an arrangement with the Mayakoba golf resort, which is half price Monday morning. Great golf course for that price.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Jeff L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews