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Reviewed 20 August 2009

Amazing, astounding, gorgeous hotel I’ve very limited time to write reviews but this time I’ll take the time because this place is the PLACE. If you are thinking in Playa del Carmen this is the place to go no questions asked we had a look at many of the top hotels, Mandarin, Velas, RoseWood, Fairmont etc and by far this is the best of the best in every category, service, luxury, amenities, etc the staff is open to walk the extra mile for you in any request.

Is pricy yes but is worth it every single penny if you are thinking in saving 50 or 100 per night using another hotel please don’t, you won’t regret it and if you play golf you have to play this course is PGA course.

Ask for the boat tour which happens at 11 am Tuesdays and Thursdays and the pampering service at sands (beach pool)

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank al740739
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BanyanTreeMayakoba, Vice President / Area General Manager at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 23 September 2009

Dear guest,

We thank you immensely for making this exception and taking the time to share those gracious comments with other users.

The Banyan Tree Mayakoba family is pleased to know that the genuine pampering we provide to our guests is well appreciated and recognized.

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

Warm regards,

Pancho Llamas
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 20 August 2009

My boyfriend and I have traveled to Playa del Carmen/Riviera Maya approximately 6 times in the last 2 years so we know this area pretty well. The last time we came here, we stayed at the Rosewood (also in the Mayakoba) and we thought it couldn't get any better. We initially thought about staying at the Rosewood again, but decided to stay at the newly opened Banyan Tree to try something different. We really didn't think it could get much better than the Rosewood - boy were we wrong. Both resorts are 5-star and you can't go wrong staying at either place, but the Banyan Tree is just a step above.

The villas - One of the main differences between the villas at the Rosewood and the Banyan Tree are the private pools that accompany each villa. The pool at the Rosewood is small and is not that inviting. The private pool with our villa was a HUGE endless pool that was surrounded by beautiful landscaping and several lounging areas. Some of the villas come with a hot tub which I would highly recommend you upgrade to. It's just nice to come home from dinner or a day at the beach and soak in the hot tub.

The food at the Banyan Tree is excellent. The main restaurant, called Saffron, serves Thai food and they have actually staffed world class chefs, restaurant managers, waitresses from Thailand so it feels like a truly authentic experience. The restaurant itself is so beautiful and romantic. There are 3 main seating areas, 2 outdoor and 1 indoor if you would rather sit in air conditioning. I recommend sitting outdoor overtop the lagoon. It just creates an unforgettable dining experience. We couldn't get enough of the food from Tamarind, the hotel's other main restaurant. Our first night there, we had the pleasure of meeting Christian Roth, the Food and Beverage director of Tamarind and the hotel bar, La Copa. He set up a special tasting menu for us with fantastic wines from Mexico. We rated it as one of the top meals we have ever had (almost better than Laserre in Paris!). We loved it so much that we even had dinner at Tamarind a second night with Christian. We had friends in town so he set up a beautiful dinner for us in their private banquet room called La Cava (where they served the president of Mexico when he attended the opening of the hotel) which is room where they also store their wines. We were treated with a brand new tasting menu with specially selected wines from Christian. Needless to say, it was amazing!

Spa - The spa at Rosewood doesn't even compare to the spa at the Banyan Tree. And before the Rosewood, I didn't think I could ever find a nicer spa. The service is unbelievable. We scheduled a swedish and balinese massage. In addition to our massages, they give you a footbath, facial massage, head massage, and refreshments. Our 60 minute massage was 90 minutes of absolute bliss. We were tempted to go back for a second round the next day but didn't have time. They also have this amazing facility called the Rain Forest. We didn't have time to experience it, but we heard it is a must.

The staff - they remember who you are from the minute you walk in to the minute you walk out. Everywhere we went, we were greeted by name (they even remembered how to pronounce my name which no one ever does). They are above and beyond attentive. At one point while I was on the beach, I asked one of the attendants the time because I didn't have a watch and every time he saw me after, he would tell me the time. If they are that attentive about small things like this, imagine how they are about everything else.

I could go on and on about all of things I loved about the resort (the bikes they have for guests to ride around, the fresh fruit in your room each day, the outdoor bath area, the cold towels on the beach, the concierge that flawlessly set up my scuba certification) but this would get too long.

Unfortunately, we only spent 5 days at this resort. If you have the time, stay for as long as possible. You will not regret it!! We're already trying to figure out when we can come back.

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank atn107
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Banyan_Tree_Mayakoba, Vice President / Area General Manager at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 28 September 2009

Dear guest,

On behalf of Banyan Tree Mayakoba family, we wish you to know how much we appreciate your valuable and gracious comments.

Since we first opened our doors to our guests, we only have had one purpose in mind, to provide an authentic “Sanctuary for the Senses” for our guests and offer to all of you a unique space for having a getaway.

Comments like yours endorse the belief that our efforts are well directed to achieve our main aim, provide to our guests a unique, different and memorable experience.

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

Warm regards,

Pancho Llamas
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 11 August 2009

An outstanding welcome with a monumental lobby , followed by a wonderful service oriented crew , great food and outstanding scenes. The kids had the experience of a lifetime and the adults had a relaxing massage provided by thai experts.
Definetly one of the best places in the world.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled with family
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1  Thank MartinMty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BanyanTreeGroup, Area General Manager at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 17 August 2009

Dear valued guest,

We thank you immensely for taking the time to share your experience on TripAdvisor.

We were delighted to read that you enjoyed your stay and wish to thank you very much for your gracious comments.

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

Warm regards,

Pancho Llamas
Vice President
Area General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2009

Extremely exceptional resort that is truly amazing in terms of service, facilities, and amenities. Probably the best hotel/resort we have stayed, and we've been to the usual Four Seasons, Mandalay Orientals, and Ritz Carltons. Also the best massage that I've ever received.

Few things that you should know however:

Food inside the resort is very costly. Expect about $60-100 per person for decent meal with all charges & fees added. We opted to go out to town for dinners because of price in resort. If you can book a packaged deal that includes breakfast ($50 per person) and maybe some resort credits it may ease the shock.

Unless you book a 2 or 3 bedroom villas ($$$$) on the beach most of the standard one bedroom villas are about 15 minute buggy ride away from the beach ... NOT a walking distance! If you are looking for a place where you can simply walk out onto the beach from your room you will be disappointed. Regardless because of the sheer beauty of the place I can easily overlook this inconvenience.

Except for the fact that I thought the food was WAY overpriced, this resort is top notch. The staff is very accommodating and helpful, and I cannot say enough good things about them.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank world_is_not_my_home
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BanyanTreeGroup, Area General Manager at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 17 August 2009

Dear valued guest,

On behalf of the team at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, we wish to thank you for your gracious comments about our staff, service, facilities, and amenities, particularly the spa and food service.

We also wish to thank you for sharing your experience and impressions with others.

Your comments with regards to the food pricing and value have been passed on to our F&B Director for his review.

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

Warm regards,

Pancho Llamas
Vice President
Area General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2009

what can i say that hasn't already been said about this place? it's truly a one of a kind place in the riviera maya. being in the mayakoba complex it has similarities to the other resorts of the complex. banyan tree like the others are not all inclusive and pays close attention to the ecology of the land. they have tried to preserve as much of the natural area as possible. the architecture and decor far surpasses any of the other mayakoba resorts. it is zen without feeling cold which sometimes can be a hard thing to do. throughout the resort there are numerous large scale light fixtures as well as old asian antiques. the overall effect is one of perfection.
the service is also outstanding, not to say the other resorts lack in service but there's something personable about the way they treated us. we felt like we were welcomed into somebodys home-somebodys great BIG home. you can give great service but exceptional service comes with warmth and genuinity. everyday at the beach we were met with the entire sands staff welcoming us. we enjoyed refreshing little treats throughout the day. one of the few hotels where bottled water was complimentary and constantly being replenished. the beach bar is probably one of the best ive seen. bars where you can stand and order your drink from within the pool is quite common nowadays but one with such close proximity to the beach is not common. you can order your drink, sit and enjoy the view of the ocean all the while still being in the pool. awesome! jorge, ricardo and the entire sands staff worked so hard everyday and we thank them for taking care of us! we even received a wonderful rejuvenating massage treatment on the beach from them.
the amenities in the rooms are great. and all the extras are a very nice touch. i enjoyed my in house slippers very much. they have slippers at all hotels but these were just so pretty and color coordinated for his and hers, now thats unique! thats exactly whats great about banyan tree everything is so unique and done so tastefully. thats what i love about great hotels they take the time to make the simplest thing different and unique. i wont bore you with a lengthy review of everything that has already been posted. i just want to say that this place is very special and if they continue treating their guests as well as they have they will soon be one of the great resorts in the riviera maya.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank jshien
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BanyanTreeGroup, Area General Manager at Banyan Tree Mayakoba, responded to this reviewResponded 11 August 2009

Dear guest,

On behalf of the Banyan Tree Mayakoba family, it gives us great satisfaction to know that the hospitality provided has been appreciated.

We wish to thank you for sharing your experience with others and to wish to express our great joy to know that our mission was accomplished during your stay.

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

Warm regards,

Pancho Llamas
Vice President
Area General Manager
Banyan Tree Mayakoba
www.banyantree.com

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