I really wanted to like this hotel. When I came to Holbox first in 2010, I celebrated the New Year at this hotel - it set up gorgeous tables on the beach for the occasion....When I was selecting a hotel for my trip this time, I believed Paraiso del Mar will be a great choice. I must admit it was a disappointment for me and spoiled my vacation significantly.
Rooms: unless you are in a Master Suite (there are only 6 of them), you are stuck in a dungeon-like room away from the beach. You cannot see any glimpse of the sea from there. In fact, all you can see are the walls of other buildings and the rich jungle foliage. In the three rooms that I have been to, you do not even get any sunlight on the sunniest day. I was told at the check-in that this was the concept of the hotel ("the midnight darkness"?) - I wish I knew before booking 4 nights there. When I just arrived, they escorted me to a room next to the reception - it smelled of dampness and I could see nothing in it until the staff turned the lights on. I respect that some people might enjoy that, but I cannot survive without the natural light. I asked for a change of rooms and was kindly given another one that seemed drier and a tad lighter. When we returned from dinner that night however, I was appalled to realize that the area around the room was filled with a loud noise from the restaurant's exhaust fan. Again, some people might not mind, but this is the last thing I want to hear at night on the beach...the sound is of a huge generator always on. I asked to be moved again and the staff obliged. However, our travails did not stop there....since these rooms (I really hesitate to call them villas) are built two to a house, if you stay on the first floor, you hear everything going on on the second flood. I am not exaggerating by saying that I could hear every time the people upstairs went to the bathroom, I could hear their conversations and could track their movements...again, not my idea of the way to spend time by the sea. On the 2nd night, the neighbors upstairs returned to the room at 3:00 AM and we could barely sleep from that time on. The next morning the hotel staff promised to not place anyone else above us, but that worked for one night only as the last night we again had neighbors and had a fitful sleep as the noise was unbelievable. Even to get to their rooms, the people from upstairs need to climb stairs that go against the wall of the first floor room...it all echoes. I really dreaded returning to these rooms every day...inside it was like being at the bottom of a well...
Staff: Most staff was very nice. They tried to accommodate our requests, but I felt they lacked authority and skill to make any improvements. The front desk staff changed every day and they usually did not pass messages from one person to the other...so I had to see them several times on the same issue. The cleaning staff was very thorough, however on the 3rd day my PJs went missing. The reception staff told me dispassionately that since no one would still pajamas, it was impossible that it would be the hotel's fault. The sad part was that they were left on the bed and went missing after the bed was made the next morning. I left without my PJs and no one thought of compensating me for the loss...they just shrugged and moved on.
Food: The best day was Thursday when the restaurant offered a juice bar for breakfast. I am not sure why this is a rare offering, but on other days the selection was pretty sad. For people like me who do not eat red meat, there was a choice of fruit, granola and eggs. Amazingly, at a sea resort, there was no fish/seafood for all 4 days we were there. We did not eat dinner at the hotel as I was not impressed with the breakfast options.
All in all, while I love Holbox and think we will come back again, I will definitely go to another hotel next time. I tried to leave this hotel as soon as I saw the pitch black rooms, but was told that the cancellation was 7 days and I did not have the energy to argue and convince anyone to let me go.
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- Also Known As:
- Villas Paraiso Del Mar Hotel Holbox Island
- Hotel Paraiso Del Mar
- Paraiso Del Mar Hotel