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Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa Reviews

Mexico | Mexico - Riviera Maya Our Rating rating Details
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Customer Rating 161 Reviews
Value
 
4.2
Service
 
4.4
Beaches & Pools
 
4.6
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
3.9
4.2 out of 5
"Overall a great deal, the 90min timeshare think was not needed, food was ok, however a nice place and great deal, would come again." – Mikemc696969
157 out of 183 (86%) customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Beautiful beach! Broken patio door lock Lookiing into the resort from the beach Adult only pool Beautiful beach Adult pool Lobby Broken patio door lock Beach Rib eye at the Steakhouse Adult room Cheers from Sandos Playacar

All Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa Customer Reviews

1-10 of 161 reviews. Sort by
August 21, 2010
Been Twice and Looking to go a third

I've actually stayed at this resort twice. The first time was so great and such a good value we went here back to back year and now are actually looking into going a third time and getting married there. The resort is phenomenal. It is broken into two sections the beach and the Rivera. We preferred the Rivera. It was further from the actual beach but was newer and had nicer bigger rooms. Plus if you are feeling lazy and don't want to walk to the beach the better pools are in the Rivera section and they have a golf cart that comes every few minutes that will take you to the beach section. The food is outstanding. I mean there is only so good a buffet can be, but Sandos has some of the best buffet food I've had outside of Vegas. The Ala cart dining options are great too. Loved the Brazilian and steak place. French was good too. The bars are great with tasty drinks and good service. We upgraded to the select club when we got there. It gets you preferential seating on the beach and an extra pool area with some pretty awesome loungers. Also you get access to two additional bar areas that have pretty tasty hors d'oeuvres and top shelf liqueur. The beach is also great. White sand on the bluest water. I love the whole thing. I've been to the Mayan Rivera two times and both were at the Sandos and booked at CheapCarribean. I can't think of a better way to spend my vacation and look forward to my third trip this summer.


18 of 18 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 5
Value
 
5.0
Service
 
4.0
Beaches & Pools
 
4.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
5.0
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From: Indianapolis
Age: 25-34
Travel: 1-2 trips/year

March 3, 2012
Good if traveling with family

Sandos Playacar's resort was overall a good resort. We traveled at the end of February 2012. I would recommend this resort to people who like to vacation with their childern (typically when we go to Mexico we enjoy this time without our childern). It is very family friendly. Food- Buffets are buffets, but they did offer a variety. They did show cooking at every meal so you could have fresh food made right in front of you. The chicken and fish were very good. Desserts however were not as sweet as we are use to. We ate at all the a la carte restaurants except for the Brazilian and the French. Our favorite was the Meditteranean. Beach- Beach area was nice. They could have done a little better job clearing the seaweed off the high tide area in the morning, but what was left did not stink at all. The beach area was big enough for everyone except if you want a place in the shade make sure you put your towels out early in the morning. Activities/Shows- The entertainment team puts in long hours and does a good job trying to keep everyone entertained. The shows were amateur, but were nice to go and see. There was always something going on if you like to get involved. Rooms- The rooms were just as seen in their photos. We had a beautiful view of both the adults only pool and the ocean. One of the best views I have had from a room so far. The showers were very spacious.


16 of 16 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
4.0
Service
 
4.0
Beaches & Pools
 
4.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
4.0
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From: Withee, Wisconsin
Age: 25-34
Travel: 1-2 trips/year

August 10, 2011
Fantastic Resort for the money. We will return!!!!

We had a fantastic time. We would HIGHLY RECOMMEND staying in the STANDARD room over the Junior Suites. The standard room might not have all the frills of the Suites but it is centrally located next to the pools, food, bars, dive shop and best of all the ocean and beaches. The Junior Suites are a LONGGGGGG walk to the ocean (they do have a van that picks you up and drops you off) but when I am on vacation I dont want to wait for a van to have fun. FOR ALL YOU DIVERS: the reefs are great the dive shop is very accommodating. The divemasters allowed me to pick which reefs I wanted to dive and several times myself and the divemasters where the only divers. Food was good, I highly recommend making reservations to all of the fancy restaurants as soon as you get there, as the good ones fill up fast. The Beach is fantastic, every morning sea weed/grass would wash up on the beach and the crew from the resort were instantly on it cleaning up the beach. I even saw a man raking the sand first thing in the morning so that when all of the guests come down it looks perfectly groomed(NOW THATS SERVICE).


9 of 9 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
4.0
Service
 
4.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
5.0
Room Comfort
 
5.0
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From: US
Age: 35-44
Travel: 3-6 trips/year

December 26, 2013
First time all inclusive, just not my style

Pros: Very Clean and well maintained for the age Love the towel decorations (nice touch) Great Service. Polite and professional staff Safe environment Lots of options for entertainment Spa reasonably price for services. Free use of hydro therapy section Excerat is well worth the money and beautiful. Stay for the Show. It is long, but worth it. Monkeys wake you up at 6am. I love it, others don't.They can be hand fed with caution. Beach is amazing. No sharks during the day, no stingrays, no strong current. Activities like aerobics and volleyball etc Cons: Upon arrival you are offered drinks and then when you think you are going to get an "overview" of the resort you find yourself being asked to join vacation club or time share and sit through a 90 min presentation. This happens also on your second day when they put a card on your door leading you to think you have forgotten to pick up some resort coupons. Don't do it. They harangue you to go on a tour on the grounds and push the vacation club again! Food was plentiful but flavorless. On the level of college dorm food or old country buffet We went to the Steak house, French, and Brazilian restaurants. These are better than the Festival and Mediterranean, but if you compare to US these are low average. NOT what I was expecting. Steak house and Brazilian are in the basement of the Lobby Building, with no air conditioning and is designed in 1970's décor. Service is exceptional and staff always polite A+++ for the staff. Standard Rooms smell of mold and mildew, stained chairs, burnt lamp shades, uncomfortable beds and you need to put your room key in this slot for your lights to work. Was this place built in the 70's? The standard rooms and spa need to be updated. If you are into cheap booze, getting drunk, and not a foodie, then this is for you. My 18 and 20 yr old loved it. Take Imodium with you. We all drank bottled water, but all got the runs. Pepto or Imodium was outrageously expensive. 10.00 for 8 pills, or $8.00 for a small pepto. The parasailing is 40-65 a person, depending on how good you are at haggling or what they feel like charging at that moment. One guy said 40 and another said 65 (same company) standing a few feet apart. There are tons of add-ons and staff will come up to you on the beach or pool area to try and sell add on services. This was somewhat annoying. There were photographers, spa reps, and activity vendors all trying to get you to spend...oh and the never ending wait staff asking you if you want more drinks (tip them and they will return every few minutes). That could be a good thing or a bad thing depending on how much you drink or want to be left in peace. If you go into town, nothing has a price tag. It is all on the barter system. I am American, so I am uncomfortable with this method of doing business. I read it was about 7.00 from 5th street to Sandos Playacar , every taxi driver I asked, said 9.00usd. 5 peso to use a bathroom on 5th street. Really!!! Shows: karaoke night; drunk fools singing off key Mariachi band: some local flavor Disco: booze plentiful DJ bad (per kids 20-18) but I would not allow my boys to go to Coco Bongo in town (this is where to party) The first two days were awesome dec 20, and 21st. It was not crowded. On the 22nd hordes of people arrived and it was difficult to find a chair by the beach and impossible to find a chair by the pool. People get up early and reserve chairs with towels. Finally, I am not a big drinker and if I drink, I don't want cheap alcohol. The best meal I had was at a restaurant off the tourist track in town called Econimacal comida (cheap eats on 20th) where I had awesome fresh fish with rice 50peso and my son had a plate of Mexican tacos 8 pesos, and two pepsi for under 10.00USD. In conclusion, I have no idea why these all inclusive are so popular. Yes it is a no brainer. You eat where you want and drink all you can and never ever have to leave the resort. Most of your meals are buffet style where it is hard not to over eat and the flavor is just not worth the calories. This is Disney land for adults. Keechi and not very luxurious. This may be odd, but I did not like wearing a band for 5 days. I also did not like the obvious preferential treatment between wrist band colors. For the money, I would rather stay at a more intimate hotel, taking in more local flavor and choosing my own entertainment and restaurants.


7 of 7 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 3
Value
 
4.0
Service
 
5.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
2.0
Room Comfort
 
2.0
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From: Chicago, ill
Age: 45-54
Travel: 3-6 trips/year

October 19, 2015
Great vacation spot

This was a wonderful resort. The rooms are spacious. The service is excellent. Everyone is friendly, warm and helpful. There are plenty of towels poolside. I loved the pool activities. Even if I'm not doing them it is fun to sit with a drink and watch. I highly recommend this resort to families of adventurous preteen kids. I have a 7 and 11 year old and they thought this was the best vacation ever. Biking, mini golf, video games, pool, beach, tons of food...what else would a kid want? They had a lot of activities for kids. The beach was lovely. The resort is very large. The teen club in the evening was a godsend. I could sit at the cafe outside the teen club and watch the show. The kids could play games until late. . I would recommend a restroom for kids be in the teen club so they don't have to walk so far and use a restroom that abuts a bar. I love the little town. You can borrow a bike and ride there. Very nice ride and great little town to explore. We will be going back. This was such a fun place.


7 of 7 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
5.0
Service
 
5.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
3.0
Room Comfort
 
5.0
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From: Boston
Age: 35-44
Travel: 3-6 trips/year

August 7, 2010
Sandos Playacar -- What a Value!

Despite the expansive size of Sandos Playa Car Resort and Spa, the staff offers the kind of service you might receive at a botique hotel. They were friendly and helpful and were patient and knowlegable teachers when my husband and I tried to speak Spanish. The Sandos Playacar is about 2 miles from the town of Playa del Carmen, which my husband and I walked daily. There are activities nearby if wish to see some of the mayan ruins, go zip lining or perhaps explore a cave or cenote. But if staying put in the resort is what you want, you will find more than enough to do. There were water sports aplenty on the beach or in the pools. You can even try your hand at arts and crafts if you so desire. And, of course, just being on the beach with the beautiful blue waters is entertainment enough. The beach may be a hike away from some of the accomadations but there is free transportation to and from beach and to and from the specialty restaurants if you would rather ride. The food at the buffets is the best in the Playacar area, in my opinion, and the specialty restaurants are also good. The rooms are clean and cool either by air conditioning or by ocean breeze which ever way you prefer. If you wish to sit on your balcony and not even leave the room, room service is part of the all-inclusive feature of this resort. There are night time shows for the whole family in the evening to wind down your day. My husband and I are planning a trip back next year only this time with our daughters, their hubands and our 4 grandchildren. Sandos Playacar -- What a Value!


6 of 6 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 5
Value
 
5.0
Service
 
5.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
4.0
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From: Milwaukee Wisconsin
Age: 55-64
Travel: 1-2 trips/year

November 10, 2015
Sandos Playacar Nov. 2015

We are a 27 year old couple. We had a nice time at Sandos Playacar, despite the rainy weather. The room was nice; however, our sheets and towels had stains on them. When I went to run the water for the tub/jacuzzi, the water came out brown. The swim-up bar in the adults only section was really fun. The only bad part was the pool was noticeably dirty. The scum on the side of the pool was very thick and extremely visible and there was a film of something (suntan lotion?) constantly floating around the pool. Not much filtration or chlorine monitoring from what we could tell. The staff was very friendly but we walked down from the adults only section to the main entertainment area in the rain to go to the Mexican restaurant but we found out that the restaurant was under renovations once we got down there. No one had told us about the renovations when we checked in. We stopped and just ate at one of the buffets instead and it was pretty good. I would recommend going to the buffets. The adults only section was very nice for couples looking to relax. Overall the place is huge and very beautiful. The staff is helpful and the animals roaming around are fun.


6 of 6 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
2.0
Service
 
4.0
Beaches & Pools
 
4.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
2.0
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From: Washington, D.C.
Age: 25-34
Travel: 1-2 trips/year

March 30, 2011
Overall a Good Trip

My party and I ended up downgrading our rooms and losing money due to the fact that the nice new rooms were a mile away from the beach, big pools and buffet. Only after we booked the trip we read the reviews online about the distance of the new rooms from the beach. So if you don't want to walk over a mile to the buffets and the beach ask or book an old room!!! They did give us a partial ocean view! I only have two complaints one is there is no beach services! You have to walk to a very crowded bar in order to get drinks. Also there is no separate checkout line or kiosk. It took me over an hour and half to be able to check out!!! Good points: Restaurants where very good! Beach was very nice! Room was always stocked with beer, soda, water. 24 hours room service! Very close to downtown Playa $7 cab ride.


14 of 17 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
4.0
Service
 
4.0
Beaches & Pools
 
4.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
4.0
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From: Boston, MA
Age: 35-44
Travel: 7+ trips/year

October 26, 2012
9 Days at Sandos Playacar

The resort is pretty, large and enjoyable. The beach and pools are excellent! The bellboys and the activity directors are all very personable and go out of their way to give you an enjoyable time. Miguel from Peru was exceptionally sweet and fun. He made our 16 year old granddaughter's experience extra special and that couldn't have been more fun for all of us! Thank you Miguel!!! The food was nice with many choices, though the inability to make restaurant reservations for each night of your stay was frustrating. There were no working ATM's or the ability to exchange money into Pesos at the hotel. Had there been, the employees would have been tipped far more often and I believe tips can inspire better service. We experienced many contradictions in answers between employees at the reception desk and in The Meeting Place which caused some frustrations and extra trips back and forth along the LONG pathways between them. The resort is a very long one from front to back and it's one heck of a walk to the gorgeous beach, so make sure you know that when you request a room location! And enjoy the excursions the resort itself offers and don't book from any other company unless you are prepared to pay thru the nose having to drive the hour into Cancun!! We learned that the hard way! The people in the airport need to BE IGNORED!!! Do NOT let them stop you!!! And yes, the resort will want you to join them for a "Welcome" breakfast which is their way of offering you a chance to become a member at the resort. It takes up your morning, but if you have the time, it's up to you. If you aren't iterested, be honest, tell them and just get up and leave politely. Nothing lost but your time Would we go back? Maybe. We have stayed at other resorts in Playa Del Carmen and it all depends on what type of vacation you want. Do your research before you book! Adios!

Beautiful beach! Lookiing into the resort from the beach
5 of 5 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 4
Value
 
4.0
Service
 
3.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
4.0
Room Comfort
 
3.0
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From: Menifee, CA
Age: 55-64
Travel: 3-6 trips/year

April 29, 2013
Great 20th Anniversary trip

This was our first trip back to Playacar in over 10 years. The resort we had stayed in previously was under renovation so after researching several resorts we became totally confused. We called Cheapcaribbean.com and the helpful rep assisted us in narrowing our search to Sandos Playacar. We were a little nervous about visiting a different resort but we were quickly relieved at check in. The staff was amazing from beginning to end. They were all extremely helpful and I would suggest asking anyone for assistance if you have questions. We were upgraded to the "Adults Only" section which I had read was very far from the beach. We loved it as it was quiet and the room was very nice overlooking the pool. The walk to the beach was not too bad. My wife has medical issues and she made the walk just fine. Also, they have a shuttle that picks up every 10 minutes. The beach is incredible and is right next to a huge undeveloped area where we took walks down the beach every day. Olympus tours were great with our transportation and setting up our snorkel trip. We did the catamaran snorkel trip and it was incredible. The food was good but not great but there are several places to eat. We liked the breakfast buffet and the steak restaurant and Brazilian steakhouse. We also liked the Italian buffett. We had one bad meal at Fiesta Buffett. There are also bars everywhere including the beach, pool and lobby. The bartenders were fun and the drink servers on the beach really hustled. The resort is huge and there are plenty of activities, the spa or you can just chill at the pool or beach. We liked it so much that we attempted to extend our stay. Overall it was an excellent stay and we highly recommend Sandos Playacar Resort

Great 20th Anniversary trip Great 20th Anniversary trip
4 of 4 found this helpful
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Overall Rating: 5
Value
 
5.0
Service
 
5.0
Beaches & Pools
 
5.0
Dining Options
 
3.0
Room Comfort
 
5.0
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From: New Jersey
Age: 45-54
Travel: 1-2 trips/year