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Reviewed 30 May 2010

My partner and I came back a week ago, I have ben to an Iberostar before and this was far far better. You CANNOT be dissapointed with this hotel its impossible...and I'm very confused by the review that said the food and drink is just ok and that not much choice unless you like beer - did they have the wrong hotel???!!!!! There was SUCH a selection I couldn't believe it. Drinks galore, ANYTHING you want. Buffet was great, so some of the dishes are the same some days but there is so much of it there, I think you are completely spoilt for choice! The staff can't do enough for you, the rooms are very nice, beds are hard yes but, I've never slept so well! We were in block 25-pretty perfect with location between the reception and the beach. The peacocks MIGHT wake you up, if you are a light sleeper you might want to take ear plugs. The gardens are lovely, lots of peacocks and some other small animals I'm not sure of their name and, while not an abundance of monkeys they could be seen. I think its perfect location - 5 mins from Playa del Carmen by taxi which is definately worth a visit. Its lovely. You can also walk from the hotel to the Plaza down the road for bits and pieces and a few stalls. Worth tryig the A La Cartes at the hotel-Italian, Mexican and Steakhouse were gorgeous. Pool is massive, then its right on the beach. I really don't think you could ask for anymore. Entertainment is worth a watch-some nights better than others. I'm sure there is stuff I've forgotten to say but overall, we LOVED this place and we loved our holiday. I'm not sure exactly what you could be dissapointed with and trust me, I'm quite fussy!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank Casey090
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2010

My husband, 4-year old son, and I stayed at the Quetzal for 8 nights at the beginning of May. Overall, this hotel did not disappoint and we would stay again, and again... at least until my son is grown.

Check-in: We arrived around 8:00PM after traveling all day and were greeted by a very nervous clerk who invited us to transfer to another IB property as an "upgrade". When we confirmed that we were not being bumped, we told him we wanted to stay and he tried to convince us to go to the other hotel for a few more minutes before giving up and giving us keys to our room. I'm not sure what that was about but I heard from another guest that they'd oversold for the next night and were looking for volunteers to change hotels. Other than that, everything was fine and the welcome drink was a nice touch.

The Room: We stayed in room 2251: third floor overlooking the "jungle" and not far from the beach. We had asked to be placed in building 21 but 22 was pretty close. The rooms were fine - nothing fancy - but perfect for a beach vacation in which you don't really plan to spend much time in the room. The beds are on cement slabs but were perfectly comfortable. We like firm beds and these were perfect for us; we did not ask for a mattress pad. The bathroom has nice tiles and the shower stall was large. Again, nothing fancy, but just fine.

We liked that they left a very large bottle of water (3 liters, I think) which we used for brushing teeth, etc. They also left two small bottles of water which we kept refilling so we could take with us to the beach. We never tried the TV and the fridge was a little on the warm side, by US standards, but worked just fine.

The room was clean enough. There were no bugs whatsoever except for a few random fast-moving ants in the bathroom... I found some greasy something or another and some hair on the phone so I cleaned myself (mainly b/c my son likes to play with hotel phones). We only got housekeeping twice and they did a great job. When we didn't want housekeeping, the maid would offer us water anyway.

The Food: I found the food at the buffets to be perfectly suitable and much better than I expected. There was a very large variety at the main buffet and we liked trying different things. We ate most of our meals at the beach palapa on the Tucan side as it was on the beach (where we spent most of our time) and got a nice breeze. Although the selection there is not a good as a the main buffet, we enjoyed it and there was nothing to complain about. Now, if any of these restaurants were stand alone restaurants in San Francisco, I would not recommend them on their food. But I would on atmosphere. Where else can you eat near the beach in your beachwear and watch people from all over the world interact? Sure the food is not the best, but as I said, much better than I expected in an AI.

I would not recommend the specialty restaurants, however. The Mexican and Japanese were mediocre... especially when you compare them to the quality of the buffets. The tropical was decent but not worth the hassle of getting dressed and sticking to a schedule when on a beach vacation. Next time, we're only eating at the buffets.

Oh, and the paella on the beach is pretty awesome.

The restaurant service was, for the most part, great. Yes, we do tip and we like to make small talk with our wait staff but I'm not sure the good service was just due to that (with a few exceptions). I cannot recommend tipping enough. These people are sweating in their uniforms and work really hard for the tourists.

The Bars: The bartenders were super nice and the alcohol was fine. We pretty much drank beer, caipirinhas, and mojitos and were pleased with the flavor. No complaints here... of course this is not an exclusive lounge. If you want fine wine, you should stay elsewhere. This is not that type of hotel.

Service Overall: As I stated earlier, the service was great. No complaints. The staff seemed to be trained to say yes no-matter-what. The main buffet did not keep its posted hours and that annoyed me on three occasions. I'm not sure why they couldn't just put a sticky note saying that the restaurant would open two hours later than advertised or close one hour early, but oh well.

The Beach: We had some red flag waves and high winds. The lifeguards were iffy so I wouldn't count on them. We thought the palapas were too far from the actual water so we got an umbrella from the towel hut and kept it all week. We could move loungers to the shore and plop our umbrella and we were happy. There is no beach service that far away from the hotel but you're just a 40-foot walk to the beach bar.

The doctor: I had the opportunity to require the services of the in-house doctor and was ... not impressed. Nor was I impressed by the Hospiten (urgent care clinic just outside of Playacar)... but I'll leave that for another review.

All in all, this is a good hotel. Don't expect The Four Seasons (or even maybe the Marriott). But you get what you need... and more. I strongly recommend leaving the complex... it's tempting just to stay on the hotel grounds as you don't really "need" anything outside... but just go. Hop on a cab or the ADO bus and explore a little... go to Coba, it is awesome!

PM me if you have any questions.

About us: We like to travel and only expect a clean (no cockroaches) room and decent food. Anything else is a bonus!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with family
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4  Thank GirafaSF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2010

We stayed at the Quetzal for 2 weeks in March/ April and it was the best hotel I have ever stayed in. We have been to all inclusives in the carribean before but this topped them all. No idea how people can complain about the food - it was amazing!

Location - fantastic, beach is long, sandy beautiful and rugged with miles of soft sand to walk on and that turquoise water to stare at. The hotel itself is in a great location, many are very far out the way from anything so its impossible to walk out the grounds but this was perfectly placed in walking distance to a local shopping plaza through lovely streets and also a longer walk to playa carmen for shopping and nightlife

The Hotel - Grounds were amazing like being in a jungle, fantastically landscaped and walking through them there were iguanas, peacocks and wild monkeys - beautiful! Even a flock of flamingoes on site - and parrots!

The rooms - basic but nice! If you can afford it get a room with a beach view.

The food - again the best food for an all-inclusive. Buffet restaurant huge choice and will the all-inclusive option you get I think 4/5 bookings for the restaurants; steakhouse, tropical, mexican, japanese and italian. Steak was the best I ever had - even in the UK and the tropical, seafood, was fantastic. Service is phenomenal too. Huge range of cocktails, good menu and they make anything you want. You really are spolit for choice.

Facilities - We made use of some of the beach activities - yoga and beach volleyball which was fun and also used the tennis courts- but book early as they only have 2! Poll is lovely and landscaped very relaxing and not busy even at peak easter time. Could always find a sunlounger on the beach but get there early by the pool. Dive centre on site as well which was very good.

Mexico itself is a beautiful place, so much culture to see and the people are so friendly and food wonderful. It really is a rich place to visit, with great wildlife onland and in the sea. Would highly recommend it and I would recommend this excellent hotel.

Top Tips - Mexico is expensive for yours so budget ££. MUST sees are Tulum (you can do this on your own not on a tour), the cenote caves and the xel-ha water park - absolutely amazing.

  • Stayed: March 2010
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6  Thank snurton123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2010

I guess if you want no fuss no muss, go here. For me, the food was very mediocre and the drinks worse. If you get tired of beer, you have few choices.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled on business
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3  Thank Ron M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 May 2010

Here's the deal, if you're looking for a cheap vacation, then this resort is perfect. The rooms are nice and clean, the staff is terrific, the pool and beach are amazing, but the food, GROSS.

If you like pizza, hotdogs, hamburgers and nacho cheese sauce while vacationing in Mexico, then you'll be fine, otherwise, you might want to pay more for a higher quality hotel.

After a few days, we figured out to eat only at the large buffet near the main lobby as they had the largest selection of food. The dinner restuarants were bad, so after trying two of them, we just continued to eat at the buffet.

Other than the poor food, everything else was great. The drinks were constantly flowing and the staff did everything to make your trip enjoyable.

I'd still recommend the resort, but people should know what to expect upon arrival.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Nicole G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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