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“Beautiful spot; be careful walking!”

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Mayan Palace Riviera Maya
Ranked #10 of 11 Hotels in Playa Paraiso
Lansing, Michigan
Level Contributor
66 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Beautiful spot; be careful walking!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2013 via mobile

About the walking...VERY slippery floors and walkways with any moisture at all. Rainy days were treacherous...we had several slips and falls. Beautifully maintained grounds and friendly helpful service. If you avoid the timeshare sales pitch you'll enjoy your stay. We were asked in advance about any special occasions, and we mentioned being close to all of our birthdays...a small but lovely cheesecake was delivered by surprise to help us celebrate. Enormous pool...I can't imagine even a family of four wouldn't find chairs together any time day or night (it's open around the clock). We had a few nice meals with servings big enough for leftovers. We had a two BR unit, plenty of space; kitchen could use a dishwasher. Told that the ice was safe to consume, we did all week with no ill effects.

Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
3 Thank elscoot57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Newark, Delaware
Level Contributor
39 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2013

Stayed at the Mayan Palace from Aug 11-18. The 3 of us had one of the best times ever. Will try to cover it all in the sections below.

Transportation - Called the concierges desk a week before our arrival and they sent an email with confirmation of our complementary pickup at the airport. Since no one else was arriving at that time we didn't have to share the ride. Wouldn't have mattered since it was a big van.
The same company that took us to the resort charges $15 each for the return and is on a schedule starting after 7 am each hour. We learned that a cab for 370 Pesos ($30) was cheaper and could leave at any time.

Room assignment - About a month before our arrival, we called and requested a room close to the pool since it is difficult for my wife to walk long distances. When we arrived a Bell Boy took our luggage from the van and told us he would take it to the room as soon as it was assigned. As we entered the lobby we were greeted and taken to the check in desk. We were then assigned a 2 bedroom suite in building 1, the closest to the pool. They told us and gave us info about the resort, its restaurants, shops, pools, activities and services. A shuttle then took us to the room where the bell boy was waiting with our luggage to show us around the room. It was a huge room, that was very clean with 2 bedrooms, a mini-kitchen which we hardly used except for the coffee maker (bring coffee and filters), microwave (for heating leftovers since the meals at the restaurants were more than we could eat) and frig (plenty of room for drinks, left overs and bottled water, we bought 2 huge 6 Liter bottles from the deli for less than $5 each which took us through the week, no need to drag some back from Walmart). Some reviewers talked about the hard beds and pillows. Ours were just as comfortable as the ones we have at home and we slept great. Each bedroom had a nice flat screen TV and there was a bigger one in the living room. The furnishings were very nice and comfortable. For other rooms that are further from the pool there is a shuttle that will pick you up every 15 minutes to right where you pick up towels by the pool.

Restaurants - We thought the food was excellent and actually cheaper that we pay in the Delaware, Philly, Baltimore, DC area. We always had leftovers too. We ate at every restaurant, some more than once. Havana Moon by the beach was really good with international cuisine. Ate there twice, once outside and also inside. Its an open air restaurant so no ac, but it was really comfortable. On Friday night they had a dance show called Roots that was enjoyable. Tramonto was Italian and so good. Service was excellent. It's indoors on the second floor so its air conditioned with a great view towards the pool. Had entertainment from a really good singer and piano player. Gong was at the other end of the building from Tramonto with a bar between, I missed it, but on 3 different nights at the bar they have Margarita making, Tequila tasting and Wine tasting, about $14-19 for each. Gong had an incredible menu from sushi to any other type of Asian food including Peking Duck. The Balché Pool Bar becomes Frida's Grill for dinner time. We enjoyed eating right by the pool for late lunches and for dinner. They had Cuban drums, salsa dancing and romantic Mexican duets every evening. Del Lago a huge open air place by the lake that serves a breakfast buffet every day. I did it once. Way too much to eat unless you want to gain 10 lbs on vacation. On Thursday night they have a wonderful Mexican Buffett and a 2+ hour Mexican show. After the first breakfast there I went to the Green Break restaurant close to the golf course and a 5 minute walk from the lobby where they have al carte breakfast and lunches. I had eggs and ham, one morning, French toast one morning and pancakes on another. They also had great looking omelets. Each cost about $6 or 7.

Pool - The pictures of the pool on the web site do it the justice it deserves. Perfect describes it. Huge and incredibly clean with so many comfortable lounge chairs there is never a shortage. The deal on their cabanas is great. You can reserve them a day ahead of time and then put a deposit down for them on the day of use by 11 am. They make them up with pillows, sheets and towels. The deposit is 350 pesos which gets removed from your bill after you order that much in drinks or food by the pool or at Balché or Fridas. We spent at least twice that each day. You make the reservations at Blaches by the pool. There are at least 55 of them, but they go quickly so make your reservations for them early the day before. The pools was at various depths so it was great for little ones in the shallow areas. The normal depth was about 4 or 5 feet.

Pools side service -Drinks and snacks - First there are 2 large shaded swim up bars then there is pool side service with a great wait staff who make regular stops by your seats. They are very friendly, no pressure, they are just there to help you. We gave ours an extra tip at the end. Daily happy hour goes from 11-1 where you get double size drinks for the price of a small one. They also have a different daily special drink that goes all day again, double size for the price of a small. The snack menu was really good. I had guacamole that lasted for 3 days and calamari another day. Drinks cost between $6-8. Also at any time they will bring you a large cup of ice water for no charge. Couldn't ask for more.

Deli - The deli area offers food and drinks of all types. We got the 6L bottles of water there. They have a snack bar where you can have sandwiches made or pick up pastries for breakfast or deserts or have a special coffee. There is also a gelato area and a creperie to make any type of crepes you want. Beside the deli is a shopping area which includes a big jewelry counter. At the far end is an arcade and cyber-cafe where you can jump on the internet for 40 pesos for 30 minutes or 70 p for an hour. We didn't pay for wifi access because we didn't want to live on line, we were living by the pool. At the cyber café when you are done the attendant will stop your session so you can come back later and use the minutes you have left. We checked in for our return flight and printed boarding passes there.

Spa - My wife had the best experience ever at the Brio Spa - fantastic massage and other relaxing activities that were the great.

Beach - There is coral up to the beach so no swimming, but great to walk on the coral and see what has come in on the last wave in the tide pools. A life guard is always there. Plenty of lounges on the beach also. Tried to go snorkeling but couldn't with the acquadic activity center due to having read flags which closed the port all week. The beach is swept by a small tractor each day to keep it spotless. There is also a pier that takes you out to an area at the end where you can have a special romantic dinner out over the gulf.

Tipping - Tipping is included in meals and bar service at 12%. The maids leave an envelop the night before check out. The service everywhere on the resort was excellent with such an incredible staff who were always just waiting to help you in any way they could. You really felt pampered. 12% is less than we normally give in the states.

Going outside the resort to Playa De Carmen - took one trip into the closest town, Playa. The shuttle cost $5 each or 50 pesos. 5th ave is where the shopping area is. The best merchants were the ones that didn't try to get you to come into their shops, which many of them did. They were a turn off for my wife and daughter so we only shopped at stores that weren't out there trying to drag you end by starting conversations with them. When we were ready to come back we got a taxi for 225 pesos.

We didn't do the time share presentation and selling event since we already have two of them.
We loved the grounds and all the wildlife. The staff was always working to keep it looking great. We would go back in a heart beat.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Bob P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cedar Lake, Indiana
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 20, 2013

just wonderful if this it. The pool was great biggest ever. the beach was a walk away and the pier was great good food, and a perfect little shop to buy pastries cloth anything you want a short cab ride to the beach where the turtles migrate and it was just beautiful like the rest. The town of Playa my favorite. 5th ave will be the next stop for me. Clean streets, ice cream anything you want. Its busy with people and I like that. Just have to find a small place to stay and all will be fine. Like on 5th Ave' Great sun

Room Tip: don't no we had a suite and it was very quiet, down the hall to the right and there was the stor...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JGR54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 9, 2013

Amazing place, priceless! Beautiful views, places, swimming pools and food.
ITS EXPENSIVE.. the food, massage or anything you have to pay, but it's worth it. If you could have the budget on your vacations to spend a little bit more than in any average restaurant you are in PARADISE!
Its beautiful to walk around that place, the staff is really nice, it's like a little jungle but really clean, new and safe.
The internet is good but you have to pay... still worth it...
The invite you (non stop) to go for a breakfast so they can tell you everything about their timeshare which they say is not a time share... it's more likely the same... i bought it and now i'm not happy because i don't have time in advance to book my vacations, i always know in a month in advance... so whenever i call (three times already) they tell me is all booked! i couldn't use it yet and it's more than 6 month and had vacations 3 times... It's good (maybe, cause i haven't asked) if you have 6 month in advance to plan your vacations.
I love this place, it's super relaxing and perfect for families or couples...

Room Tip: If you don't like to walk or wait for the golf carts to pick you up you will have to ask for a r...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JazBaires
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 7, 2013

Stayed at the Mayan palace at the start of June which staff said was the more quiet period out of the year and they were right. Resort was beautifully maintained, swimming pool was huge and staff were amazing. Were lucky enough to get a room upgrade as we asked for a room closer to the pool. Breakfast buffet was great and there was a wide variety; wildlife also added to the beautiful scenery. The only criticisms are the price of food and drink at restaurants as they were very pricey and the location of the resort as it was quite far away from any type of entertainment and night life of which the resort did not provide enough of. Taxis to cancun is around 50 minutes away and cost around $30-$40 US but buses cost around $5 although hotel staff advised us that they were unsafe (still took it there and got taxi back). Playa del Carmen was about 20-30 minutes away and much cheaper to get to as resort provides shuttle buses there for $5 each way. Found this to be quite annoying as going out for the night meant high expenses and long journeys. 24 hour pool made up for the lack of night life although evenings got slightly boring at times. We got out of having to sit through timeshare presentation as we said we were students so were allowed to skip straight to breakfast and still got our 10% discount and $300 off room bill. Endless facilities and luxury plus staff were the friendliest I've ever met and overall would go again! (as a relaxing getaway rather than party holiday)

  • Stayed June 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank skadia87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
38 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 4, 2013

As a resort, it would be tough to complain. This place has it all. The food was fantastic at Gong and Havana Moon, the happy hours were plentiful and the folks were very friendly. Booked a few cheap excursions thru the resort and they were a lot of fun. The beach, at the water's edge, is mostly coral. Very tough to walk out without water shoes. The beach itself is very nice and is right beside the pool. Be prepared to be asked to sit thru a timeshare sales pitch. If you do it, regardless of whether or not you buy into it, there are rewards like 10% off your entire bill, a wonderful free breakfast, and a 1000 peso credit. We did it and, although we didn't buy, we did receive all of the rewards as promised. Overall, the property is beautiful and the people are too!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank John S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mount olive New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 3, 2013

POSITIVES:

1. CLEAN--Top Notch Place, immaculate & incredibly clean (which is very important to me). They have a very large maintenance staff constantly working all day beautifying the property. Beautiful gardens surrounding the property & pools. Gorgeous canopy beds, lounges, rattan furniture around pools and sitting areas (which are plentiful). Clean beach with many tiki huts. Very large property which requires the use of their free golf cart shuttle service. Staff is friendly.

Hotel room was very clean with marble flooring. This type of flooring is common in the Bahamas, Caribbean & Central American countries. I prefer it to dirty, old hotel rugs. Hall noise can be a problem but we made a complaint to the front desk and never had a problem again.

2. SWIMMING--Pools are massive-about 5 acres of them in many different shapes and designs. All are 4 ft. deep and very warm with jacuzzis. Volley ball games and pool toys are allowed.

A lot of activities going on throughout the day. Rock climbing & trampoline on the beach for the kids. Outside Trips can be arranged with concierge and prices are comparable.

3. EATING--10 different restaurants on the property & they are not cheap. It's easy to spend $25-30 on a dinner for 2. Havanna Moon breakfast buffet is $25 pp. Can purchase sandwiches, drinks and other items at the large gift shop/store. I found the food prices comparable to US. There is a Walmart and Mega grocery store in Playa del Carmen (about 20 miles away) which is cheaper than resort prices.

4. SAFETY--Very safe with a lot of security all around the resort property. We rented a car and ventured out a lot. There is police patrolling everywhere in the Cancun and beach areas. This is because Mexican tourism has taken a hit by all of the bad USA press (& rightfully so) and tourism has suffered. They are trying to increase tourism again & so are providing a lot of police for safety. Highway police do random car searches looking for drugs & weapons. They don't bother tourists.

CONS:

1. SNORKELING--The resort beach is very rocky with difficult water access. They make it up with the pools. On shore Snorkeling was ok. Saw most fish under and all around the pier. There are many man- made coral formations in the water but in & out access is tricky. Puerto Morales (10 min. away) has good off shore snorkeling for $20 pp if you get someone to take you out on a boat.

2. TIPS--Everyone wants tips for every little thing. It became annoying after a while. So bring a lot of American dollar bills particularly if you venture outside of the resort. You will be tipping just to use the bathroom!! This is not the case at the resort.

3. BEWARE OF THE SCAMMERS-- Bargain your price. Never pay full price if you shop outside of the resort. They inflate all prices & nothing has a price tag. They also lie a lot. Store owners will tell you they know you from the Mayan Resort because they work there. It is a lie. They will notice your colored arm bracelet the resort gives you and use it to lure you into their store, offer you a shot of Tequilla, tell you they served you at the resort restaurant & that they are your friend. They will tell you how little money they make working at the resort so they have to hold down 2 jobs just to make ends meet. They tell you a lot of hog wash just to get you into their shop to buy.

4. AMERICAN MONEY--Many shops won't take your credit cards. They will tell you the machine is broke or you must pay with Pesos or American Cash. They want your American Cash! Try to use the credit card over cash if possible. American Express has a good daily exchange rate. The Mayan Resort exchange rate is low. The resort ATM may be better but there is a fee so you should calculate. At times, the resort also shuts down their ATM by not replenishing the money so you must make your exchange with the front desk.

5. TIMESHARE--At the resort, Vida Vacations will hit you up for a free breakfast and timeshare presentation. If you are not interested, just say no.

Overall, I would highly recommend this resort.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank diana r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mayan Palace Riviera Maya

Property: Mayan Palace Riviera Maya
Address: Km 48 Carretera Federal, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
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 Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#10 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Mayan Palace Riviera Maya 4.5*
Number of rooms: 402
Also Known As:
Mayan Riviera
Mayan Palace Cancun
Wyndham Playa Del Carmen
Riu Palace Riviera Maya
Cancun Grand Mayan
Grand Maya Mayan Riviera
Playa Del Carmen Wyndham
Mayan Palace Playa Del Carmen
Mayan Palace Riviera Maya Mexico
Mayan Palace Riviera Maya Playa Paraiso, Mexico

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