10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Best by Far!
"Firstly, THANKS to all who helped us with information on the PDC and Riviera Maya area. Just got back from a week at the RH. It was Wonderful!! A few clarification though inregards to some other posts by people on this board. The resort is not "stuffy" at all. EVERYONE treated us with warmth and kindness while we were there. The workers make more than $3 a day and are actually rathar well paid vs. other resort employees, with typically one day off per week in busy season. Any additional tips are GREATLY appreciated but are truly not necessary. We stayed in Villa #27 in 2725 right next to the Presidential Suite. So our corner of the balcony had a similar view as the PS. Our Concierge was Mariano and he was excellent. This may be because the PS is in this villa so the service needs to be very good. Room was very nice and there is 110 current in the rooms. FOOD is where this resort seems to have it over most of the other AI's ALL of the restaurants are excptionally good, and they will fill them to capacity when the resort is full. We noticed some people waiting for tables to open up as they arrived for their reservations. As stated the grounds are meticulously well kept. There are many other resorts in the "playacar" area. The Riu's looked rather nice but the others looked just So-so. BEWARE of the other resorts trying to "lure" you in for their time share pitch. It is more that a "5 minute" walk into town, more like 20 minute. The avairy is open but not worth the $8USD to get in. We went to Tulum and Xel-Ha one day and that was nice. Tulum is very impressive and Xel-Ha is nice. we took the Ferry over to Cozumel one day and Mariano arranged for us to have a day pass to the Allegro resort over there. We rented a Jeep and traveled down to the resort to change into our swim suits and grab some drinks before heading out. This is another AI on Cozumel but when we got there we could REALLY see a difference in the quality of the resort. My adv s TERRIBLE and the pools were not sanitary ( there was something growing in them and I don't think science has determined what it is yet.), so I can't figure out WHY people would stay there. Other than that we had a great time at Chakanaab and Playa Del Corona snorkeling. This is surly worth the money and for those other posts that seem to knock the resort, I would suggest that people are treated the way that they treat people. Everyone we spoke to there ALL thought it was a wonderful experience."
- Travel date: 21st January 2003
"We loved this place. We were on our honeymoon. The staff was so nice and the food was great. The pools were not crowed at all even though for a couple of nights the whole place was booked. The restaurants were not crowded at all either which was nice. It was so relaxing. We had such a wonderful time and wish we could go back right now. I suggest it. It was worth every penny!"
- Travel date: 15th January 2003
4 years in a row
"No other all-inclusive touches the Royal Hideaway. No wrist band, no smuck, no buffets, just class and quality. The beach is the best in Playa, the resort immaculate, and the food excellent. We ended up here by accident the first year and what a blessing. It is expensive, but 1) no extras other than the spa (even tips and taxes are included) and 2) it's worth EVER PENNY!!!"
- Travel date: 13th January 2003
"The Royal Hideaway was just perfect from the time we arrived to the time we left. The staff was friendly, the food was outrageous and the service was amazing!! Tips were included but we found the need to tip anyway because they were so great!!! I would recommend this spa to anyone that enjoys being completely pampered!!! I cannot wait to go back!!!"
- Travel date: 6th January 2003
Overrated, nice place
"We enjoyed our stay and we're glad we wen to that area, but not necessarily the resort. The place's beach was very crowded and there are barely any pools in which to swim. The resort does not at all celebrate the ocean or water activities (older crowd, or so we'd have thought--see below). This resort caters to people who don't mind being crammed together, sipping drinks, in side-by-side lounge chairs. If this resort existed where the Barcelo Maya is.... it would be perfect. Barcelo Maya has a much better beach, for example, and is a bigger, quieter property--we never felt crowded when stayed there at 100% occupancy. It appears that Royal Hideaway was an afterthought-concept in developers' minds......... meaning it got built and crammed in amidst other resorts with better beaches and more land. Who wants to hear music from a nearby resort? The place for this very reason is not that upscale, and that WOULD be forgiveable, if it did not advertise itself as upscale, etc, charge extravagant prices.. The resort is very safe, very accomodating, and whenever we attempted to move a lounge chair ourselves, staff people were immediately there to move them for us--nice, but then we felt obligated to tip/were embarrassed. It became almost annoying. Each room has a safe, comfortable bed, and ours had a whirlpool. The food was great. Tip everyone, as the staff expect tips (do not be cheap). Service was not very friendly, but impeccable... this is one of the nicest resorts in the Playacar area, but it feels quite artificial, is noisy, and shares its beach with too many other resorts (unintentionally). The Allegro next-door, I think, allows some its guests to go to Royal Hideaway when they have reservation problems [see below]. Royal Hideaway is an Allegro property, but they attempt to hide this fact. Why? There is NO comparison whatsoever between Royal Hideaway and Maroma, for example, and their price ranges don't vary by much (no, they don't). This place is not a Four Seasons, Ritz, etc, and in Mexico one should not expect it... but its prices are steep for what you get. If you don't mind hearing music from other resorts, seeing kids at night drunk running around, having other hotels' guests on the beach and crowding it, then I say, "Go for it." This is not Mexico.. But if you appreciate relaxation, peace, and quiet, I would recommend Barcelo Maya, El Dorado Royale, or someplace similar.. they are not as "upscale," but are much more peaceful... after all, you are in Mexico.. not to be ignorant, but how "upscale" can any resort in that region be? Especially an all-inclusive. Sandals this resort is not, either, sorry to say. All-inclusives are a bit of a con in any case. If we return to that area, we'll stay elsewhere, further down towards Tulum. Relaxation, for us, means hearing just the ocean.. not booming music at night, kids running around, etc.. The resort claims they are adults-only, but allow 13+ year olds. There also was some sort of "pre-Spring Break" group of high school kids from Texas at Royal Hideaway. Running around, diving in the pool at night... they were bored at Royal Hideaway and took that fact out on the other, legitimate guests. And the hotel's management did nothing allthe while. Drunk kids, booming music, nice rooms, impeccable staff. I talked to one kid, a nice 17-year old from TX, and he claimed they were booked next-door, but moved there because Apple screwed up their reservation.. they pretty much ruined our trip... and likely paid a lot less than us for the same resort! We are surprised at the myriads of positive reviews... people... shop around with an open mind... don't get ripped off by staying a Royal Hideaway... it's neither Royal, nor a Hideaway.."
- Travel date: 24th December 2002
A wonderful getaway
"My wife and I have traveled many places around the globe and put this resort as one of the best. The service and attention to detail was terrific. The personal concierge for the villa was a nice touch. Just outside the door of the room all our questions, reservations, and request were taken care of. The food was fabulous. The grounds, pools, and walking paths immerse you into a world of tropical forgetfullness. The beach is fabulous! Soft white sand, great swimming, scuba, and water sports. Tip your waiter and the drinks never emptied. We will return for sure!"
- Travel date: 10th November 2002
Perfect Escape To Paradise
"All I have to say is 5 star all the way. This resort makes Sandals look like 2 star. From the moment we got there, until we left, was nothing but perfect. I did request via email (about 2 weeks prior to our arrival) a king size bed and villa 24, 27, or 31. When we checked in, we were told we got villa 27 with a king size bed. We arrived early on a Sat. morning, about 10:30am. Being that our room wasn't going to be ready until 2:30, we were able to use a hospitality room with access to our luggage to change, etc. We were off to the beach and it was just perfect soft sand, warm water, as clear as can be.... with that intense blue-green water. The grounds were beautifully landscaped with pools of water. The room and even the bathroom were superb, even for a regular luxury room. Food was delicious. Our favorite was Palazzo, the italian restaurant, and I would recommend to eat outside where at night you can see the lights of Cozumel. And ultimately the service is terrific. They make you feel like you are someone really important. I would recommend to bring dollar bills so that you can tip them. After finding out that they make next to nothing ($3 a day) you don't feel so bad giving them a $1 after they serve you 5 drinks in a row on the beach! This is the best resort I have ever stayed at in the Mexico/Carribbean area. I will definitely return to this resort."
- Travel date: 20th October 2002
Dream come true
"My wife and I stayed at the RH in mid august of 2002. Almost every aspect of our stay was better than we could have ever hoped for. I will break my opinions into categories. Greeting: The entry was majestic. The person who checked us in was more than accomodating to our needs and requests. As promised a cool towel and champagne was provided. The bell boys were gentlemen and graciuos guides to our room. Our Villa's concierge was gracious and planned for our every needs (dinner reservations, VHS movies from the hotel library delivered to our room, our favorite sodas and water in our room etc etc.) The room was very nice. Cleaner than any hotel I have ever stayed in. Even cleaner than the Four Seasons that we have stayed in in Las Colinas and Austin. The fixtures and furniture were sturdy and very nice. The AC compensated for the humidity and heat outside. (our glasses fogged every morning we left the room) My only complaint is the quality of the comforter. It was thin and not plush. However, they did provide extra blankets and pillows. Also, the night time turndown service was very nice. Artful even. Gym: The treadmills and excercise equipment were state of the art. Better than most US gym's equipment. Beach: Clean and elegant. The service we recieved on the beach was just as nice as that in the restaurants. They set up our chairs and cabanas every day and brought us new refreshments every ten minutes or so. Restaurants: Better than I was hoping. I felt as thought I was enjoying a $150 meal every dinner. All the restaurants were exquisite. Most were 4 or five courses. Eat early. Service: From the bell boys to the restaurants, to the bars, to the concierge to the groundskeepers to the maids, they were all very welcoming and gracious. I felt like a dignitary. Our every whim was accomodated. I whole heartedly believe that the staff to guest ratio is 3 to 1. We will be back every year. It was worth the money."
- Travel date: 1st October 2002
"It is a nice place, but so much more expensive than elswhere in that area. Riu Palace, for example, is considerably less. Royal H wants $1700 per person for 3 nights, whereas other resorts average $1100 (the upscale ones)--peak time of year. The beach is shared with too many other resorts, including an Allegro next-door... the food is good, but no better than other resorts in the area, service as well. In the end, we felt people who go there must not know better, or must believe because you pay more $$$$, it MUST be better. It is not so, in our opinion. You can hear music from a neighboring resort every evening; you are never secluded. To make matters worse, there was a convention of some sort, with businesspeople on "rewards" trips--very obnoxious and loud, gave Americans a bad name. Anyway, we spoke to another guest who had some items stolen from their room, but we never had problems. The staff expected tips, which is not a problem. Bottom-line: stay elsewhere for a better, quieter, bigger beach, and it will be more fun, cheaper, and more relaxed. Royal Hideaway caters to the Ritz-Carlton crowd--but without Ritz amenities. If this resort existed on 100s of acres, it would be perfect, but it is crammed in the Playacar area along with the other tourist traps in the area."
- Travel date: 16th August 2002
"My husband and I were married at this resort last year, and I have to say that it truly is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. The food was amazing, and the rooms were incredible. The beaches are beautiful, the water is bright blue, and it's a very relaxing place. The only problem we ran into was with the staff. We had relatives staying at the Allegro resort next door, and we had to pay $100 per person just so they could come on the property to the wedding. Also, after paying the steep price, we had guests who were turned away at the gate because the staff failed to communicate the arrangement to the guard who didn't speak english. It was a bit excessive and embarassing for us. We did however, after all of the bugs were worked out, have a beautiful wedding on the beach and an incredible reception dinner. The price was a little expensive, but overall it was a beautiful place that we plan to return to in a couple of years."
- Travel date: 3rd August 2002
Top traveller tips for Royal Hideaway Playacar
"Do not expect 24 hour room service, do not expect help for anything outside of the ordinary "
Royal Hideaway Playacar is also called
- Occidental Royal Hideaway Playacar Hotel
- royal hideaway playacar
- royal hideaway