What We Love
- No reservations needed at any of the restaurants.
- Sinking your sandy toes into the soft, white shores in Playa del Carmen.
- Top-notch service where you get to sit back and be pampered. It's vacay time. You deserve it.
- Keeping the party rolling at night - letting loose at La Pinata nightclub.
- The full-service spa-some experience at Renova. Massages and facials and a whole lot of you-time.
- 100% Authentic Mexican food with lots of chips & guacamole for that necessary afternoon snack.
- Let the kids burn off energy with other kiddos their age. You get to lounge by the beach in peace.
Things to Know
- Eat, play, drink at the sister resorts.
- You're within walking distance of shopping on 5th Avenue - Playa's retail hub of local treasures and restaurants.
- You can explore all the local sites: ancient Mayan ruins, Sian Ka'an Reserve or the Crococun Zoo.
- Feeling like an adventurist? Head to the bright blue seas for snorkeling, kayaking, windsurfing and more.
- There's three glistening pools - perfect for lounging, day drinking and pure relaxation.
LocationPlaya del Carmen - Beach
General Policies & Fine Print
Check-in Policy - Hotel requires a credit/debit card authorization or cash deposit upon check-in for incidentals; this will place a hold on your funds.
Convention Policy - Individuals attending a convention cannot book this property for their stay. If found attending a convention, guests may be subject to higher room rates upon arrival.
Spring Break Policies - At least one person 21 years or older is required in every room February through April. Spring Breakers (either groups or individuals, regardless of age) are not allowed at any RIU property, at any time during the year. RIU Hotels & Resorts, reserves the right to withhold admission to any Spring Breaker. The hotel reserves the right of admission and may request clients to show passport or official ID to prove full identification. Guests can and will be removed from the property at their own expense in case of any disturbance or complaint from other guests or hotel staff. Parties in rooms are not allowed. Spring break groups or unruly behavior is not allowed all year round at any property.
Transfer Policy - A price may display when children stay free, if your vacation includes transfer to your hotel.
General Information - Room taxes and service fees are included in vacation price.
Minimum night stay restrictions may apply.
Reservation changes may not be permitted unless authorized by the hotel.
Customer Ratings & Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating6677 reviews
Good choice for a slightly quieter holiday
The Playacar is one of three close by RIU Hotels, all are quite different, There is a quieter feel at the Playacar. The room 6217 was well appointed. Separate shower and toilet were appreciated and the room was kept very clean, thank you Patricia. The food was plentiful and an excellent range. The Coronavirus did not really start to affect the holiday but for the last 4-5 days. This didn't really impact the general food standard or quantity. The upside was that there were plenty of beds around to chose from. The site itself had a gentle atmosphere other than some guests, not content with the usual musical noise of the entertainment team, provided there own unwelcome often loud music on small amplifiers. I fear this selfish trend may be growing. The evening show was often disappointing. The mainly live bands/singer on first was usually better than the home grown entertainment team. The dancers were good but a bit 'samey'. It all usually finished soon after 10.30pm. Staff were always helpful even when it was obvious that their jobs were to disappear shortly after we were leaving, with the Playacar to be mothballed, excellent service continued, Well done and thank you. I would recommend this hotel most heartily with the proviso that children could get bored quite easily. The other Riu hotels seemed far more child centred. A wonderful holiday tinged with sadness for the staff who now have no jobs because of Covid-19. Good Luck.
This was our first time at a Riu hotel and we really enjoyed everything. Excellent place for a family vacation with kids. Beautiful beach, nice pools, very clean rooms and friendly staff always ready to help you. Will go back anytime.
This was our first all inclusive vacation but not The last. This hotel was absolutely amazing! Clean Room, friendly staff, beautiful beach and Pool Area. There are 5 different restaurants to choose and food was very good. Special thanks to entertainment team: Claudia, Nancy, Karina, Daniela, Eduardo, Anibal, Javier (and The rest of them), hope to see you soon. Also we want to send a special thank you to Alexis, best waiter ever and what a memory he have. We fell in love with Mexico, Play del Carmen and this hotel.
Fabulous holiday did not disappoint - staff are amazing!
We did 14 nights in March and had a truly fabulous holiday. We did a Riu in Dom Rep many years ago, and were keen to try another, and this place did not disappoint- optics in the room! What’s great is you can use the facilities over at the Riu Tequila and Riu Yucatan as well, so it makes the resort feel 3 times as big, and stops you getting cabin fever. (More on these other 2 later) They only ask that you take your beach towel from the Playacar and return it there (it’s a towel card system), and have breakfast and evening meal at your own hotel. Everyone has the same red wrist band for these 3 hotels. If you are not sure if an all-inclusive is for you, this place is great to try, its located in a gated community, so you can walk out, and there are plenty of shops and bars just across the road. Playa Del Carmen is a short taxi ride away (costs 120 pesos – about £6.00 one way) or would take around 30 mins to walk it. Playa Del Carmen is massive in itself too, so good walking shoes are advised, but great exercise. As well as the buffet, there is the Asian, Italian and Mexican/ Steakhouse for evening meals. They are unlimited in terms of how many times you can go and you don’t need to book these either, which is great, makes the whole holiday more relaxed, rather than worrying about clock watching and being on a schedule. Other hotels should take note. At these restaurants they take your room number and seat you, in the main buffet, you find your own table. All the food was fabulous, we eat everything so that helps. The veggie/ vegan choices might be limited. Some previous reviews might say its ‘same/same’, but that’s because they have everything, all the time! Its 24 hour, so there is always food somewhere. The bar staff work so hard, especially those at the pool bar, the service was fab from everyone for the whole 2 weeks. It’s a well-oiled machine! The beach is a beautiful stretch of white sand; each hotel has their own beds directly on the beach. We had a red flag for the first 7 days, due to high winds, but the second week was better. It was a yellow flag but still big waves, so be very careful with small children. Our holiday got off to a bit of a rocky start. I emailed the hotel in advance and asked for a quiet room away from the main stage. We got put in Block 2, we could not have been any closer to the stage. After a 10 hour flight from the UK, and being 5 hours ahead, we retired to bed at just gone 9pm. The noise was horrendous, I wanted to come home. I called down and explained, and he said if we could hold out until 3pm tomorrow, we could move to block 7, right near the beach/pool. We had to check out at 12 the next day, and they moved our bags for us. So glad we did this, our new room was so much better, twice the size, had a sofa, and a limited side sea view. The ice machine in block 2 did not work and looked a bit shabby too. So don’t be afraid to speak up, a few days would have been fine, but not for 14 nights. Initially when researching online, we were unsure if to go for the Playacar over the Yucatan, but we are glad we picked this one, over the other. We seemed to have more space, and never had trouble finding a sun lounger somewhere, the Yucatan in comparison seemed over crowded, and the beds were packed in like sardines. Their pool bar is a lot smaller, and cold, as it does not get the sun on it. Whereby our pool bar had a glorious view of the ocean, and got full sun until late in the day. (Take a hat!) We ruled out the Tequila as an option, as we wanted to be beach front, and its set back from the beach quite a lot. There is a shuttle that takes you down to it, or it’s a good 10-15 mins walk. I actually really liked the Tequila. We escaped to it a few times when it was very windy, as it was lovely and sheltered, in a jungle type setting. If travelling with small children, this might be a better option over the Playacar, as the kids pool was so much bigger, with more slides. And felt more peaceful too, the Playacar got quite rowdy in the afternoons. Constant music, which is fine, but sometimes I am just not in the mood and want to chill and read a book, that was not always easy to do, pool side. The foam party was a lot of fun, so that's worth looking out for. If you are a party person, then on Friday’s all the Rius in the area head to the Tequila for the Riu Party, which is White Themed one week and Neon the following. They were both amazing and very enjoyable for all ages. I would highly recommend the Playacar (and Tequilla) to anyone, not sure if I would return personally, I like to try somewhere new, and might try one of the Riu Palaces next time in the same area.
Excellent Resort (Lengthy read)
We are a couple in our forties with an eleven year old boy with high functioning ASD. We chose this resort based on a few factors: it’s small footprint, relative smallness with only 300 rooms, closeness to PDC & a previous good experience at the Riu Palace Cancun in 2005. We arrived on Sunday March 8. Were greeted with smiles and in spite of our early arrival were given a room in building 5 within 20 minutes. The room was bright, clean & modern, if a bit basic. Two double beds, 32 inch tv with a table and 2 chairs, a large bathroom with a double sink, & a fridge with beer water and pop, plus a wet bar. We spent most of our days alternating between the quiet pool and the beach. We never had trouble getting chairs, although I’d recommend getting a spot by 930 in peak season. We also did pool aerobics & a foam party in the activity pool, which was fun. Resort has a large pool bar where many ppl spent the afternoons. Here’s a brief summary of pros/cons: Hits •Excellent buffets both in terms of selection and quality. A good selection of vegetarian options plus things like almond milk at breakfast, plus a vast selection of fresh fruit & salad. Also some gluten free options. •Mexican restaurant is good. We had the fajitas & would recommend. Appetizers were delicious. •steak house is excellent. We went here 3 times. The ribeye steak was both tender & cooked exactly as ordered. The 8oz angus beef burger is also good. The shrimp & snapper skewers also got a thumbs up. •no reservations required for the a la cartes was a big selling point for us (and we never had to wait, were seated immed) •a good selection of name brand liquor : El Jimador, Smirnoff, Jim Beam, CC, you get the point •best stretch of beach in the Maya, it’s wide, has white sand, turquoise water Misses •no elevators, being on the third floor is challenging after a long day •we weren’t in the room much, but I wouldn’t mind a few more English channels on the tv The Service was excellent, no matter what bar or restaurant we went to. And I never saw a frown on a staff member the whole week. They tried hard to please us & we frequently heard things like “it’s a pleasure to serve you”. And, we were impressed at how hard they work on maintenance & cleanliness. We tended to sit in the same section of the buffets at lunch and breakfast so as to develop a familiarity with servers. We received excellent service daily from the following staff: Breakfast buffet: Remauldo Lunch buffet: Alberto Mexican: Mauricio was excellent in attending to the needs of our ASD child’s specific requests Steakhouse: Otoniel, brought us Mexican resto apps, with a few extra chicken burritos on our last night as per my son’s request Lobby bar: Froy, mixed my wife’s fav cocktail, a “beach” (blue curaçao, peach schnapps & pineapple juice), every evening while we played uno with our son. Froy committed this one to memory the first time I ordered it and I never had to explain it again. Front desk: Jose greeted us with a smile and was efficient getting us into a room within 20 minutes despite our early arrival. We had issues with noise on our first night, from the room next door. Security was on top of it, did their best. (NOTE: This was not typical of this resort, most ppl were polite & respectful & the resort is actually very quiet after the shows.) Anyhow, we went to the front desk in the morning to request a room change. Angel at the front desk, handled the situation with grace & understanding. He relocated us to a suite in building 7 & sent the porter for our bags immed. The handling of this situation is a big reason we would consider returning. They made it right. Thank you Angel. We caught 3 shows in the theatre and this included a fantastic mariachi band that I would highly recommend. We also attended the neon party at the Riu Tequila which was a lot of fun. We went into Playa twice. First time we walked. We took a cab both ways the second time. Only $7 from this resort. The town in pretty fun. I would recommend. We also spent one afternoon at the Riu Yucatan, just for some different scenery. They have a little patch of rainforest where you can see howler monkeys. I closing, I would say that we are very likely to return. The quality of the facilities, food & service are the reason. I might add, that at this price point, it’s a heck of a value proposition. NOTE: We just returned from the Riu a week ago & just as the Corona Virus pandemic was exploding in the news. My thoughts are with everyone who is affected, including the wonderful staff at this resort whose livelihoods (and possibly health) are threatened during this crisis.