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“Wonderful stay!”

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Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel
Ranked #38 of 212 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 May 2012

While planning we've shortened our stay at the Blue Diamond to 2 days after reading a few alarming reviews, and are really regretting it. I would definitely plan a longer stay at the resort in my next trip. I want to give the hotel 4 1/2 stars but the option wasn't there so I stuck with 5 stars. The resort is not perfect, but it's definitely good enough to providing an amazing vacation, and the staff are really working hard to improve the resort. The hotel grounds are gorgeous and so is our room. The staff are all very friendly and accommodating. Even with the stormy weather we really enjoyed our two nights at the Blue Diamond. The details are discussed below:

Arrival
The hotel is a gated property with tight security. We took a cab to the hotel and the guard would only let us in after making sure that we are guests of the hotel (confirmed our reservation details).

Check in
We were welcomed with a cold towel and a chilled drink upon arrival. The check-in process was very quick and included an introduction to the hotel grounds and services.

Room
We had the patio junior suite and it was beautiful. The room was very spacious, with a walk-in closet, considerable living area, two double beds (as required), a washroom with his and hers showers and an outdoor bathtub. The mattress is very soft and pillows also very comfortable. There is of course a patio with a view of the garden and pond, there are also lounge chairs in our patio which we used relax during the day and stargaze at night. A reviewer previously mentioned water leaking through the roof when raining, which made me a little nervous as a storm was forecasted to hit the area. The storm did make it here but the room was completely leak-proof. We either lucked out in the room assignment or the problem was already fixed by the hotel. The only problem we had with our room is the lack of sound proof, we heard snoring in the next room one afternoon and music playing next door is loud enough for us to have the same party in our room.

Toiletries
This is one of the weaker areas of the hotel. The shampoo and shower gel didn't lather very well, and my skin still felt a little dry after using the lotion.

Wireless/Telephone
Connecting to the wireless service was quick and easy, no passwords are required. The internet speed was fair and we had no connection problems while we used it (usually in the evening). Also, all international calls are included in the hotel price. It's done through IP calls and a code is given to each room in the welcome letter. We had a little problem with the call connections the first night but was fine in the next night.

Golf cart transportation
Golf cart service is prompt, and even when we decided to take strolls we often encountered golf cart drivers that would offer us a ride. Our golf cart drivers initiated conversations and even cracked jokes to ensure a short but enjoyable ride to the beach/restaurants.

Drinks/Food/Dining
Drinks are great! You can ask for anything and they'll make it for you. All meals in the Blue Diamond are a la carte. All restaurants were opened during our stay (thus no alternating between Aquamarina and Ambar needed for dinner). The food is definitely above average, the presentation is beautiful and taste is delicious most of the time. Breakfast is fabulous, but could be fairly lengthy as it is a la carte. The menu includes a selection of juice mixes (our favourite is the detox), fruits, cereal, oats, typical breakfast dishes like eggs benedict and omelets, more local dishes like a crepe with huitlacoche and pumpkin flowers(unique and delicious), and sweet selections like waffles and sweet crepes. Breakfast rolls and toasts are also served throughout the meal. A quick lunch of ceviches, sandwiches and burgers can be had in the Ceviche Bar, and a full 4 course lunch is at Aquamarina. Dinner is either at Aquamarina (different theme every night, we went on a Mayan night and enjoyed Mayan-influenced dishes like poblano pepper stuffed with slow cooked pork) or Ambar (international cuisine with a changing menu). We tried both restaurants and liked Ambar just a little more as the restaurant is gorgeous and the food was slightly better. We saw some reviewers mentioning long wait times for dinner, and didn't feel that was the case for us. We had waiting times of maybe 5 minutes maximum between our courses (sometimes it would arrive in a minute or two), which was fine as we would feel too rushed if the dishes were to arrive right away. Now for a few negatives, I know sushi is not their strength, but it was pretty badly done. The rice was soggy and did not have enough vinegar flavouring. In one of the sushi appetizers we ordered the chunk of cream cheese was so big that it was the only thing we could taste. Also, I find that the steaks are slightly overcooked, on two occasions where it was ordered medium rare, it was cooked medium. From this pattern I asked to have my steak cooked rare, but the server recommended to have it cooked medium rare, and it was cooked just right. Overall I'm not sure if the previous two steaks were accidents or we have to make it clear that we like our medium rare to be on the 'rare' side. Lastly, I thought desserts were on the weak side, out of the desserts we've had I only enjoyed the lime pie and a chocolate dessert from Ambar.

Beach/Pool/Activities
The beach was fairly narrow and a little rocky but it was kept clean. There's an infinity pool overlooking the ocean but it was not heated, and was a little cold on a windy day. We were informed of two activities: snorkeling and tamazcal, and signed up for both. The snorkeling was guided and it's in a reef area, our guide took us there with a small catamaran. We snorkeled for about 45minutes and saw reefs and fish, the guide even brought up a conch and a spider-looking starfish(really not sure on what it is, that's as good as my description can get, but feel free to look at the photo I've uploaded) for us. The tamazcal was also a great and unique experience, but it's not for anyone who's claustrophobic or intolerant of heat. We didn't see any other organized activities, but we saw a few kayaks and a catamaran that are available for use.

Suggestions:
- Since the property is of a fair distance to Playa Del Carmen, a complimentary shuttle to town would be nice.
- The sushi and ceviche could be improved.
- As the washroom has his and hers showers, I thought it was a little weird to have only one sink.
- The toiletries could be improved.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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4  Thank Meitantei
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BlueBayBelleVue, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 June 2012

Dear Meitantei,
Thank you for your wonderful description and your beautiful pictures! I have reviewed your comments with staff and we do appreciate your good remarks. I sincerely apologize for any inconvenience with your steak and sushi. You may be happy to know that feedback like yours always helps us to get better. Looking forward to welcoming you back soon. Thank you
Kind regards,
Blue Diamond team

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 19 May 2012

We just returned from a 5 night stay at the Blue Diamond in the Riviera Maya and it is a very tough transition to reality. We stayed in a beautifully appointed "Cenote Deluxe" room overlooking the cenote. From the moment we arrived, we were pampered by every member of the staff that we encountered. Seriously! Every single interaction was a real pleasure. Due to the size of the property and the location of our room, we often requested a ride from the Bell Men chauffeured golf carts, which showed up in a few minutes to whisk us off to the restaurant or the pool. It seemed like we were the only people there, and it wasn't until we were poolside or eating a meal that we bumped into other guests-- who we barely even noticed then. The vibe at the Blue Diamond is extremely laid back, you will have no trouble checking your stress and pressure at the door! The resort is stunning. The mangroves create a very tropical setting that feels like your very own secluded paradise. The food was very good. My only constructive criticism is that the meals were a bit too stuffy for my taste, and I admit that I am extremely picky. If mosquitos enjoy you, then come prepared with some insect repellent, it was a must have. We had an amazing time relaxing at the Blue Diamond and would love to return some day. Thank you to all the staff who made our stay so special!

Room Tip: The Cenote Rooms are located the furthest from the beach/pool and restaurants, so not a good choice...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank PickyMerrills
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2012

We just got back from a 4 day stay at Blue Diamond. I cannot begin to tell you how accommodating the staff was and what a great time we had. I can't name all of the good people working there - the drivers, the servers, the concierges, the managers - all top notch. Darwin, Cesar, Sophie, Sergio all were a pleasure. The whole staff ensures you have a wonderful, stress-free and enjoyable time.

The food was the most surprising to me, as I am wary of all-inclusive food. Blue Diamond's food was excellent - the breakfast omelets and liquid chef drinks, the lunch at Aquamarine (duck tacos are wonderful) and dinner at Aquamarine or Ambar - everything was delicious. Ambar is very contemporary and formal, Aquamarine has a different theme for each night's dinner and all were good.

The drinks were great - full bar, anything you want. We enjoyed any and many of the frozen drinks by the pool.

We stayed in a Lagoon suite right behind the beach suites. We were upgraded because of a slow-working A/C. Do not let that deter you - as soon as they heard of the problem in our old room, they immediately went into action to resolve it and when it was taking longer than they wanted (as we weren't complaining), they moved us to a better room. It was obviously wonderful and also meant we didn't have to use the golf carts anymore.

Golf carts - you do need them to get around from your room to the beach if you aren't beachfront or by the lagoon. However, they are very quick in coming to get you.

I highly recommend this place. They are doing everything right. I hope business will pick up, as resorts like this are perfect for an all-inclusive stay - good food, good rooms, good service, good drinks... couldn't get any better!

Room Tip: The Cenote rooms are far away from the restaurants, but close to the spa. If you can, book a Lagoon...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Happy C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2012

This is your swanky, boutique like, small, not loud and crazy resort!

My boyfriend, now fiance :) (he proposed there) stayed from May 5th-May 12th. It was hard to leave.

The Hotel-is amazing. I felt like I was at a resort in Thailand.The hotel itself couldn't be nicer. Ppl complained about it being long and the walk is long and you are far from the beach! From our room, 528, it was a 3 minutes walk to the beach/restaurant. I walked to the spa/lobby one day and it was quick as well. Don't complain about the walk! You are gonna need it after all the food and drinks! Ppl also complained about the golf charts. We never waited more then a few minutes.

Our room-AMAZING, huge! the view was perfect! i would recommend the room, 528. When we booked it on jetsetter it was the least expensive. Ppl complained that sometimes the room wasn't turned down or cleaned in the morning. That wasn't the case for us! They were great, very thorough.

The food-there is one choice for breakfast, aquamarina. Breakfast was amazing! They have a list of fresh fruit drinks to choose from. Everything I had I enjoyed. The tray of croissants they would come around with was amazing, a little taste of Paris. Someone complained about the coffee coming around slowly and being cold. Most mornings we got a french press to share btw the 2 of us, it was piping hot and delicious coffee! And I'm VERY picky with my coffee. I'm a New Yorker lol
Lunch-you can go to Aquamarina or the Cevice Bar. Huge selection. You can have sushi, a hamburger, fresh fish, or all 3! I was not a huge fan of the sushi, the size of the fish was pretty small in comparison to the amount of rice :(
Dinner- Aquamarina or Amber. Aquamarina is always a different cuisine theme. Amber is just a different menu every night. the dinners were GREAT!!!!! I had sea bass one night, best sea bass i've ever had!!!!!
Ppl complained and said you would leave hungry. I don't know how that is possible. I wouldn't even order one thing from each course and you would have to roll me out! My fiance is a bigger eater then I am and he was always full as well and didn't order all the courses. If you are a big eater and want a resort where you just eat eat eat, maybe something with buffets is better for you.....
This is elegant dining where every plate looks gourmet!
I only had one not great meal, my chicken was dry.
Ppl also mentioned it took a long time to get served. I think Aquamarina for dinner was slower then Amber for dinner. But we were never in a hurry, we didn't leave the resort so it didn't matter to us to be in the restaurant for an hour or two.

The Staff-AMAZING, so nice. everyone is really friendly and eager to please! We loved Ceaser, he usually served us on the beach. He was awesome! Padro was also great and Javier!

The Spa-UNREAL!!!!! I felt like a celebrity! we got couples massages, amazing! There was a guy at the spa (i forgot his name) he would kinda walk you from the steam room (which was amazing) to the ice bath, to the jacuzzi, etc. he was great! the use of the spa is free! they give you a key to your own locker with a robe, sandals, etc.

The Gym-GREAT! perfect, almost too much equipment lol. and yes, its free.

Suggestions
-a better stocked mini bar, not just alcohol, but juice and soda as well. add more then 2 beers to the fridge pls :)
-more snacks in the room. we always had fruit and like 2 bags of nuts. maybe some chips, cookies, etc. Not like were were ever hungry tho!
-improve on the sushi. the fish compared to the rise was too small.
-also the sound system near the pool wasn't great. maybe that can be improved. the sound of the music was just ok. the music selection was great tho!
-they had two shows while we were there. both awesome! but the lighting was too dark.

Overall GREAT vacation! GREAT resort! Great deal!

Room Tip: closer to the beach, then you are also near Amber restaurant.
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank khaymes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 May 2012

My boyfriend and I recently stayed at Blue Diamond from May 5 through May 10. Upon reading some of the negative reviews, we were skeptical about the choice that we made for our 10th year anniversary. After six days at this wonderful resort, we can honestly say that our fears were completely unfounded!

We took USA Transfers for our airport transportation. I highly recommend them, $109 round-trip and they were cordial, punctual and reliable. Many other transfers (including the hotel's) cost $75 each way, so this was a great deal. The trip from the airport to the resort was about 30 minutes in an air-conditioned van or cab. The cost doesn't include the tip, so we did add a few bucks for the drivers.

Upon arrival, we were immediately impressed by the cleanliness and elegance of this resort. A bellboy greeted us and helped us with our bags immediately. Check-in was a breeze, and we were given cold towels and welcome drinks (which were much appreciated given the temperature). Since we arrived a few hours before official check-in, we were transported to the spa via golf cart to change so we could eat, drink and use the pool or go to the beach. We waited a couple of hours and spent it by grabbing a delicious lunch at Ceviche, having a few drinks, and enjoying the beach.

The Beach: The beach was cleaned up regularly, and it was never dirty. Towels were plentiful and waiters were constantly there to take your order. It is true that the beach is a bit rocky. We brought water shoes which eliminated any issues. We highly recommend bringing water shoes, not just for the beach but also if you intend to go on day trips, like to Xel-Ha for example (highly recommend this trip). With the water shoes, we had no problem enjoying the warm ocean waters everyday. On our last day they provided a cook-out on the beach with freshly grilled shrimp, lobster, chorizo, steak and chicken. It was absolutely delicious, so if you catch this when you're there definitely take advantage!

After a couple of hours our room was ready. We booked a Patio Master Suite with the plunge pool. Our room was absolutely huge! The room was cool when we arrived, and we also got a freshly chilled bottle of champagne. The plunge pool was bigger than we expected. We didn't use the outdoor tub, though we didn't intend to anyway. The his/hers showers were great, no issues with hot water at all. The walk-in closet was spacious, and there were 2 bathrooms in our suite. The bed was satisfactory. Our fridge was always stocked with water and soft drinks, and we had top shelf liquor our room which was included in the cost. Overall we enjoyed our suite very much! We did have an issue with our bathroom sliding door not locking, but maintenance took care of it on the very first day.

Housekeeping: We never had to call to have our room cleaned. It was thoroughly cleaned in the morning (you can let them know what time you'd like the maids to come everyday) and turn down service was prompt every evening. Each time we returned from dinner our room was freshly made and our curtains drawn. They did have sun-blocking curtains so we never had an issue with our room being too bright in the mornings. We tipped the maid $2 per day.

Tipping: It is not required, but we like to tip. We didn't tip extravagantly, $2 at every meal and $1 per round of drinks, $2/day for maids. Although this resort is all-inclusive, and the staff NEVER expected a tip, we feel that given their dedicated, top-notch service, tipping is only right. They really appreciate it (especially waiters out in the hot sun at the pool or beach).

Service: We absolutely do not believe that tipping is what gets you great service at this resort. The staff are wonderful, kind people who are willing to bend over backwards to give you a wonderful stay. We never had any issues with staff, and we were always greeted warmly. Many even got to know us, especially Sergio. They are extremely hospitable, polite and friendly. Overall, this place has one of the best customer service we've had at any resort.

Golf Carts: It's true that most rooms require golf carts to get around. However, don't let this deter you because we never waited more than a few minutes for one. Simply call concierge and let them know you need one, they're there in minutes. The staff driving the carts are very friendly!

Food: The food was delicious at ALL times. We've been to many all-inclusives so we understand that you sacrifice some quality based on that. However, this place is unique in that the chefs really do put a lot into the quality of the food. The portions were also plentiful. Yes, there are no buffets, but we found the amount sufficient (sometimes even too much). If you do desire more, there's no problem getting a second entree or additional appetizers. The waiters will ensure you get everything you want/need. Ambar was great each night (up to 5 courses), and we also enjoyed Aguamarina and Ceviche.

Drinks: All top-shelf, as much as you'd like! We never had problems with watered-down drinks. The margaritas, Bahama Mama and Pina Colada were our favorites.

Pool: Always clean, not crowded. Plentiful chairs and towels. We really liked the pool-side beds. Waiters were always around to get drink orders, and you can also eat at the pool (order from the Ceviche menu).

Spa: This place is a MUST. The steam room is great, the hot tub is great, wonderful service and clean facilities. We didn't take advantage of the other services (which were additional in cost) such as massages, but other guests seemed to enjoy theirs.

Temascal Ritual: This is offered free once per stay. MUST DO! It's an ancient Mayan purification ritual. It's basically 4 sessions of steaming, and a native does the ritual with the guests. We very much enjoyed this part of our trip. They do the ritual on Wednesdays and Saturdays, ask the concierge to sign you up.

Day trips: We booked our Tulum and Xel-Ha trips with Playa Del Carmen Tours and had a great time. Concierge can help you out of you don't have the time to book these prior to going. We also made a trip to town to have dinner at Yaxche (awesome). We didn't particularly like the $20 cab cost each way when town was only 10 minutes away, but the hotel doesn't control that aspect. We would likely rent a car next time we visit to cut on this cost, or else ask other guests if they'd like to join to split the fare. If you're staying at least 5-6 days, definitely try to venture out. There are lots of excursions available, and we thoroughly enjoyed ours.

Overall: Perhaps the negative reviews prompted management to make changes. By the time we arrived, the staff definitely made adjustments and improved on all the things that may have been issues. We had a wonderful, relaxing vacation, and we highly recommend this great resort! Thank you SO MUCH to the management, concierge, staff, waiters, maids, bellboys, etc. for making our trip so pleasant and memorable!

Room Tip: The Palafito rooms seemed to be the closest to the each and restaurants (apart from the casitas), bu...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank LKR711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel

Address: Km. 298-816, Carretera Federal 307 | Chetumal-Puerto Juarez, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Blue Diamond Riviera Maya)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#21 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#26 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#29 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#29 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#36 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $554 - $1,508 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 128
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On the pristine coast of the world famous Riviera Maya, Blue Diamond Riviera Maya is a sanctuary of breathtaking beauty and peace, surrounded by nature mixed with luxury. This exclusive hideaway is set in 36 acres of lush tropical jungle, well manicured gardens and a spectacular palm filled white sandy beaches along the turquoise – colored Caribbean Sea, offering unparalleled pampering and rejuvenation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blue Diamond Luxury Boutique Hotel Playa Del Carmen, Riviera Maya, Mexico

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