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“Beautiful - but not without hiccups”

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Banyan Tree Mayakoba
Ranked #2 of 214 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 17 June 2011

Let me first start by saying that I and my girlfriend only stayed here for 3 nights, as I had spent 4 nights previously at 'The Royal Playa Del Carmen' so my review is not based on a particularly long stay. Also, as a side note, some of the pictures of the resort are outdated. They have hedges planted along the lagoon edge, so there's no lagoon view in the Spa Pool Villas. The beachside pool also has a higher hedge for some reason, so it's not quite so "infinity"

When we arrived at the resort, we were greeted by Guadalupe, who was very friendly and provided us with much needed cold drinks and cold towels. We were there as part of our celebrations for our 7th anniversary and we were given an upgrade from a 'Courtyard Villa' to a 'Spa Pool Villa' which we would come to regret. Our first evening, we made reservations for Tamarind, and contrary to a number of the other reviews, we very much enjoyed the food. Our first evening was quite relaxed and enjoyable.

On our first "day" there, we woke up early and had a very nice breakfast at Oriente and then went back to our villa to change into our swim wear. It's at this point, after changing, that we found..!

An army of ants had appeared, marching out of the walls of the closet into all the drawers, our clothes AND into all of our luggage. We absolutely panicked initially, and called housekeeping to figure out a solution. It took over 2-3 hours to "resolve" the situation, as initially only a staff member with a bug spray canister came to the scene. It took us elevating the issue to the head of housekeeping and accommodations before someone realized it wouldn't simply be a "spray" problem, as there was no way I was taking these guests back home with me from Mexico. Eventually the situation got handled, and appeared to be handled well - all our clothes were laundered, we were given some clothing to wear from the gift shop (we were only in our swim wear) and we were moved to another villa. An appropriate response, which we were satisfied with, but the whole event consumed much of our morning. We were told our clothes would be ready by the evening and we made reservations at Saffron that night. We were also asked that if we wanted to check out late or extend our stay as we had lost so much time to resolve the issue - unfortunately we had a hard flight out and couldn't stay longer.

We spent the day at the beach and enjoyed the amazing service at the sands and by far the most delicious flank steak sandwich I've had in a very long time. My girlfriend had the soft shell crab tacos which were also delicious. The staff at the beachside were fantastic, ever ready to adjust our umbrellas and even refreshed our melted drinks for free! Kudos.

When we arrived back at our Villa - there were no clothes waiting for us. We waited. And waited. Called housekeeping. Called guest services. And waited more. Our clothes did not arrive until 11PM. Another issue. We couldn't go to dinner until we had clothes - the restaurant had a dress code, so a late dinner we had that night. We were told when we departed that they were very sorry for the issue with the clothes and had comp’d our dinner that night.

Overall, the resort is beautiful, absolute paradise - and the Spa, wow, absolutely amazing! We did the “Rainforest” treatment as well as a couples massage, and their spa services are as good as I have ever had. Overall the resort is beautiful, a very serene romantic environment that is perfect for couples celebrating their honeymoon or anniversary. Side note: if you're someone who attracts mosquitoes like me - be aware that all of Mayakoba is situated on a lagoon and there are lots of mosquitoes! They provide you natural bug spray so that should provide a clue. There were much fewer during our visit, but will always be an issue for when you make use of the outdoor amenities in the Villa or eat out on the patios/decks in the evenings.

So in closing, I have many many good things to say about the resort, the staff, the food and Banyan Tree overall.. But for there to be such issues at the resort AND to have such difficulty resolving such issues (which ate up a significant portion of our short stay there!) - at such an exclusive high end resort was simply unacceptable! I must say even in closing that I feel conflicted, as the resort was so beautiful, I feel like my vacation there could have been so much more. As I look upon our vacation photos and the photos on Tripadvisor, it makes me feel like I should go back and even recommend the resort to others based on the “good times” that we experienced, but I find it difficult to justify it given what had happened.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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    • Sleep Quality
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9  Thank Willhelmson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BTMayakoba, Director General at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 27 June 2011

Dear Willhelmson

Thank you for drawing our attention to the ants you encountered during your stay, we have discussed the problem with our Executive Housekeeper to exercise better control.

On the other hand it is good to know that our staff and facilities made you feel in paradise.

I do look forward to be given the opportunity to personally welcome you again to our property.

With best regards

Maximilian Lennkh
Vice President
Area General Manager

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Reviewed 17 June 2011

What else can we ask for in a honeymoon when we got our own villa with swimming pool and garden. The villa is extremely beautiful and private. The spa is amazing with 100% customer service. The boat ride to the beach is a new and fun experience. Breakfast buffet is the best (and Free!) You also get free wifi access "anywhere" in the resort! Only draw back is the over priced restaurant, but we will be back for sure!!

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank Jen_Min
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BTMayakoba, Director General at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 27 June 2011

Dear Jen_Min

I wish to thank you for your compliments of our hotel and spa facilities and service.

It is very gratifying for the Banyan Tree Mayakoba team to know that we could meet your expectations.

Thank you for choosing Banyan Tree Mayakoba for your Honeymoon, and for taking the time to share your comments.

We certainly will be glad to welcome you back again to Banyan Tree Mayakoba.

With Best Regards,


Maximilian Lennkh
Vice President
Area General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 June 2011

The villas, beach, service, and food are 5 star. We just left today and extended our stay one extra night because we were having such a great time.

As everyone says, the villas provide everything needed ...great bed/mattress, the indoor and outside bathroom is incredible (oh and the shower and water pressure was awesome). There are Bose wave radios so just bring your IPOD. I've read some complaints about the location of the TV, well if you go to Banyan Tree to watch TV you're wasting $$$. The "plunge pool" is too large to be called a plunge pool - the water was great and being able to take a late night or early morning swim was great. The pool size was a huge plus over Rosewood.

The service was special and what you'd come to expect at a 5 star resort. Every attempt is made to make your stay as pleasant as possible. Marcos at the beach was always on the job take care of business …thanks Marcos.

For golfers the golf course is right on property and it's a fair and beautiful course. I finished 18 holes in 3.5 hours and really enjoyed the course.

One thing that I hadn't read before is the ability to shuttle between the Fairmont, Rosewood, and Banyan. If the concierge makes dinner reservations or other arrangements on your behalf, you can charge directly to your room. Also, each hotel will take you to the other hotel, as there seems to be a working arrangement between all resorts. We didn't go to the Fairmont, but Rosewood's lobby area is picturesque and it's work going over there to the tequila bar or lobby areas.

We really wanted to stay at a resort where we could see and hear the beach from our room, and if that’s must there are 5 star resorts like Maroma. That said we also really like the villa feel of Banyan and getting to and from the beach was never an issue. Bottom-line, Banyan Tree is a special place and one we will visit again.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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3  Thank Atlbrown_Fun_Seeker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BTMayakoba, Director General at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 20 June 2011

Dear Atlbrown_Fun_Seeker

I appreciate that you have shared your impressions about our property. I am happy to know that you had a pleasant stay and that we had gone beyond your expectations. We definitively will look forward to welcome you again in the near future.

Kindest regards,

Maximilian Lennkh
Vice President
Area General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2011

We spent the first 5 nights of our honeymoon here. WOW!!!! This is a really special place, It is amzingly beautiful. You feel like you are in a little slice of heaven. Our Villla was really fantastic. It's big and the private pool was a really great way to enjoy the sun and have some privacy. Of course nothing seemed crowded on the resort at any point. I reccommend going into Playa del Carmen and Going to Coba if you stay here. This place is top notch. The only people I would say might not enjoy this place would be the ones who need the resort to be right on the beach. You have to be taken by boat or they will pick you up and take you on a golf cart to the beach club.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
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2  Thank smblue1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2011

Friendly and attentive staff. Gorgeous rooms with luxury abounds. The beachfront villas are the best in the Caribbean, each with a private pool and hot tub. Location could not be more perfect. Beautiful lagoons surround the resort with lots of wildlife to observe and enjoy. The Concierge made fabulous recommendations for everything from spa services (which are extensive with an exceptional staff), activities to fill the day and dinner reservations. Truly a world class hotel.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
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2  Thank Jana5417
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BTMayakoba, Director General at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 20 June 2011

Dear Jana5417

I thank you very much for your comments about your resent stay at Banyan tree Mayakoba. It is gratifying to hear that our staff and rooms met your expectations.

I look forward to welcoming you back to Banyan Tree Mayakoba.

With Best Regards,

Maximilian Lennkh
Vice President
Area General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Address: Carretera Federal Chetumal - Pto. Juarez Km. 298, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#2 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#2 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#8 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#11 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: RM2,728 - RM7,642 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Banyan Tree Mayakoba 5*
Number of rooms: 122
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Banyan Tree Mayakoba is a site of almost mythical beauty. It flawlessly blends elegance and nature, taking the Caribbean lifestyle to an unprecedented new height. A breathtaking getaway for relaxation, rejuvenation, romance and world-class dining, it is also the region's most sustainable five-star resort. With its revitalized culinary concepts, Thai-inspired therapies at the Banyan Tree Spa, 14 event-venues and the Greg Norman signature 18- hole El Camaleon golf course, home to the PGA Tour Mayakoba Classic, the resort raises the bar for premium leisure options and event planning. Perfect for private getaways, family trips and group events, the Banyan Tree Mayakoba offers 118 villas, ranging from romantic Bliss and Serenity Pool Villas to Family Residences and Ocean Front Villas. All include outdoor areas with private pools and terraces. Inspired by the interior courtyards of houses in the Far East, each villa is discreetly built to blend with the landscape, integrating the interiors and their idyllic surroundings. East meets West in every subtle detail, from the fragrance of flowers encircling your villa, to the softness of a kimono, fine linens and essential oils on your skin. Here, even world-weary guests discover the eloquence of tranquility. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banyan Tree Mayakoba Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Banyan Tree Mayakoba Playa Del Carmen, Mexico - Riviera Maya

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