On arrival, felt like we were visiting a country mansion in the "grand" style! Lovely cobbled drive, leading up to main entrance. Whisked into reception where we were efficiently checked-in, complete with cool towel and glass of cava.
Shown to room by bell-boy, in one of the buildings to north side of property, adjacent to Occidental Allegro Playacar. A little disappointed not to have a room in one of the central buildings, as pre-requested by email, but any concern allayed during stay with only occasional noise from adjacent hotel.
Lovely room, with huge King Bed and plenty of storage space. Large bathroom with jacuzzi and separate shower, separate WC, as well as a small walk-in storage area containing safe. A little confused when later chatting with couple on their honeymoon, who said their room did not have a bath-tub! If this matters to you, you may want to check with concierge before arrival! Outside balcony ran length of room, with table and chairs, overlooking garden. Room cleaned to high standard. Evening turndown if required, but we never saw who did this! Although Gabriella was the concierge for our building, we did not really use her services.
Beautiful gardens, well maintained. Highlight of the holiday was the abundance of wild life! From iguanas down by the pool, to coatis and agoutis roaming the grounds, to monkeys by the bar Allegria. Mind you, the person on the sun-lounger by the pool who reached down for her book and touched the 2-foot iguana will for ever remember her vacation!
Pool area had more than enough loungers and parasols, although the parasols need a bit of tlc, with most having lost the steel pins to keep them erect! Nothing that a bit of boy-scout "knotting" couldn't fix! No shortage of towels, even on those days, when constant rain showers resulted in numbers of abandoned towels getting wet. Pool butlers very efficient and welcome! We were there at the same time as a couple from the US, who were obviously regular visitors, with their own reserved sun-loungers, great characters. In fact we met a number of people with whom we enjoyed a chat! Did not use the beach, other than a daily walk in either direction.
Restaurants generally good, but do make sure you get your reservations in early. Ate in the Azia first evening, and throroughly enjoyed the experience. The spicy banana sauce with the prawn starter was to die for, trying to get recipe! Second evening found us in the al fresco Grill, down by the pool. Nothing special of note. Third evening we took in the Club Royale. It was circus evening, which was a load of fun, the jugglers were particularly good. Sadly, the food was not up to standard. It is a long time since I have been unable to finish a fillet steak, but this one was inedible. Fourth evening found us in Las Ventanas, which was a memorable experience with lots of exciting edible "additions" presented between courses. Last evening was the turn of the Palazzo, with wonderful views across to the lights of Cozumel. The service in each restaurant was attentive without being intrusive. The house wines were Chilean, which were adequate. Sadly, we were unable to use the Spices restaurant, which was closed for maintenance in the evening, during our stay. Apart from one evening, we did not make use of the wine list. Breakfast outside on the balcony of the Spices restaurant was most enjoyable, with wide selection of cereals, fruit and both cooked and cold food. We had lunch at the Deck every day with more than enough choices for us! The afternoon tea was a disappointment, with little choice and sandwiches which were in danger of turning up at the edges, in the heat . Not worth the bother of leaving the pool!
We did not really use the bars in the evening, visiting the Alegria only once for a performance from a saxophonist accompanied by a singer, which was a pleasant experience. The barman in the Piano Bar was a great character, and we spent several evenings there. The male pianist was excellent, but the female not as good. To borrow from an old UK comedy show, she played all the right keys, but not necessarily in the right order! We had no complaints at all with regard to the quality of the drinks, never having to request "top shelf".
Staff in all areas friendly and attentive! Don't be afraid to engage them in conversation. Most of them understood English, and were even able to interpret my schoolboy Spanish!
We would not normally have treated ourselves to a hotel of this high standard, but we got a great deal from Expedia, which enabled us to spend 5 wonderful days here. If we can get a similar deal in the future, we will most definitely be back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Award winning luxury all inclusive resort set along the beautiful beaches of Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Ideal setting in a serene environment for complete rest and relaxation. Adults only. Member of The Leading Hotels of the World. 11 villas with private concierge are spread throughout the property's immaculate grounds. Six gourmet restaurants serve delicasies in menu-style dining. A full service spa offers the ultimate in pampering and body treatments. Personalzied service and attention to detail set this resort a world apart. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Royal Hideaway Playacar & Occidental Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Hideaway Playacar And Occidental Resorts
- Royal Hideaway Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Hideaway Mexico
- Occidental Royal Hideaway
- Royal Hideaway Playacar Playa Del Carmen, Riviera Maya, Mexico