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Playa Azul
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Reviewed February 19, 2012

Well we have just returned from a 10 day vacation in Cozumel at which time the first 4 days were spent at Playa Azul.
Our goals was to spend 6 nights at the Palace Cozumel but we were trying to find 4 nights when we first arrived that was close to the golf course. After many hours of researching on Trip Advisor we ultimately chose Playa Azul for the proximity to the golf course and the all-inclusive it provided. We chose the the breakfast with the golf package.
I must admit I was very skeptical of a small boutique style hotel as this is usually not our choice but we thought as long as it is clean and we get our 4 golf games in we will be happy.
Upon arrival we were met with friendliness and checked in with no problem - they had a young fellow bell boy carry our luggage up and he worked very hard with little or no english. upon arrival to our room it is what I expected ........clean but outdated yet everything we needed.............I guess. We did have a nice ocean view with a large balcony.
Immediately we found it to be very basic with the lamp broken in between the beds which made it practically always dark in the room as there was actually no other lamp but one other little light underneath the mirror. I kep saying that it was clean and we are here for the golf - we have something to look forward to when moving over to the Cozumel Palace - these were our initial thoughts.
We then walked down to the bar and ordered a beer and margarita - $13.00...........well they already lost my business in the bar. An absolute rip off to be paying almost $5.00 for a beer !!! We have money to spend but it is the principal simply. We finished our drinks and got a cab to take us to Mega where we purchased beer and wine etc., for our stay at Playa Azul.
We tried out supper the first night in their restaurant and sat there for probably 15 minutes with no one approaching us ??????? It was really weird as other than us there was one other table with 4 persons ( they were definately regulars to the resort ) ........they ended up bringing us a menu. We were finally served and were unimpressed. Not bad but just average. We were eatin up by Mosquitos the entire time which was very annoying.
So golf was set up the next morning and then on for another three days. The cab to and fro the golf course which is about 3 minutes away is $7.00 each way. We had a great time at the golf course..........absolutey beautiful and would definately recommend!!!! So here is the other little catch as they say you are paying for the breakfast / golf all-inclusive - It costs you $14.00 for cabs each day plus tips........and it costs you $60.00 (couple) each day for the golf cart plus tips for club cleaning etc.,..........so in essence it actually cost us at least $80.00 / day to golf absolute minumum. Not the end of the world because I fully knew that and golf is expensive when you travel and we love it but don't advertise all-inclusive when it really is not. $60.00 for the golf cart - give me a break.
Breakfast was really good at the hotel I forgot to mention.
As we were going to be 6 days All - Inclusive at the Palace we wanted to try local authentic mexican cantinas where no tourists are around. We did that and had a fabulous time - just perfect. We visited El Pique, Los Otates and El Faco ( I believe that is how the last one is spelt)
So back to the hotel - the people were great especially the main man in the restaurant in the morning as he remembered you by name and was extremely welcoming and friendly.
The hotel itself did it's job but it is not a place I would return.......there is definately alot of regulars that come back every year etc., and older couples. If you want something simple and clean then I have no problem recommending for others, just simply not a place I would even think of spending an entire week at.
We had a couple tell us this is the best all-inclusive they have ever been at????????????????What - maybe it was there first one or simple stayed at even cheaper older resorts prior to visiting this one.
Anyway all the excellent reviews kind of threw me off - it's simply average and you get what you pay for. It did it's job for the golf but other than that there is nothing special to talk about.
By the way if you like rock hard beds you will love this place :) but I will have to say the sheets etc were very clean as the maids did a good job !! I guess that is the one plus as it is nice to know the room is at least cleaned well.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank okop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed February 17, 2012

We just returned from a week at Playa Azul; once again it was very nice.Pluses: Great breakfast, the palapa next door has good food and has a local band on Saturday afternoon(that was a lot of fun), Buccanos, right next door, is open Friday & Saturday for dinner(very good)-also, go Sunday for lunch for a locals experience(no cruisers that day),the rooms are very clean & plenty large for a week's stay;some have noted that the rooms are not updated,etc but we have found that not to be the case-however, if your require totally luxurious rooms you may be disappointed, the staff,at all levels,are warm & helpful, as is just about everyone you meet on the island:that is the main reason we continue to come. Minuses: Playa invites cruisers to use the beach & facilities, something that is new since our last visit;this means every day except Sunday the beach will be covered with cruisers from about 10 AM til 4 PM so that peaceful boutique beach experience you paid for will be shared by a lot of extra people; some of whom are loud & obnoxious on a rather small beach. This the only thing that may make us change our minds about returning(still chewing on that one). Drinks are expensive & inconsistent;the ones from the palapa are better & more consistent. Skip the Lobster House: we split a lobster & had 1 beer each but paid more than Buccanos for 2 apps, 2 entrees, a bottle of wine & dessert,each of which was excellent not to mention a much nicer setting. Not sure how Lobster House stays in business selling boiled lobster,rice, & potatos for cash only at premium prices(it's not bad, it's just not wrth it)

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Kim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed February 15, 2012

We chose Playa Azul based on reviews on Trip Advisor, and because we were looking for a small, reasonably priced hotel. There were several things we liked about it, and a few we didn’t.
We chose not to use the All-inclusive option because we wanted try restaurants in San Miguel. Breakfast does come with the room, and was delicious. Fresh fruit, cereal, breads, about 8 hot dishes, plus a chef who would make any breakfast food you want to order- omelets, pancakes, French toast, eggs any style. We ate dinner at the hotel one night, and again – delicious. The restaurant is outdoors, but covered, used for all three meals. There is also a very small (7 tables) indoor restaurant open for dinner only. It uses the same menu, and is elegant.
The location of the hotel has pros and cons. It is on the North shore, which makes it close to the airport, and easy to get to the East coast beaches. It is also close to San Miguel. On the other hand, most of the island attractions are on the south side of the island, so we drove most days.
The staff at the hotel is unfailingly friendly. I cannot emphasize that enough. The grounds are well kept, but the property is small. OK, we wanted a small hotel (it has 50 rooms), but would have enjoyed more beach. Even so, it is never really crowded on the beach, and hardly anyone around the pool. On one side of the hotel is the Playa Azul Beach Club, also small, but you can use this facility and charge to your room. On the other side of the hotel is first a smallish public beach (very quiet), and beyond that another beach club, the Cozumel Caribe, which was very pretty. To use this club you need to pay an entrance fee which is applied to food or beverages. Snorkeling at the hotel was OK, but nothing special. The better snorkeling in the area was in front of the Cozumel Caribe. The north side has fish, but not coral. Places south of town had much better snorkeling.
This hotel appeared to have been built in stages, and our room was in the older building. I’m not sure if our room was typical of any others, but although it was very large, with a big patio, the room itself needed some serious updating. It was very clean, and there was plenty of storage space, but … the shower fixture in particular was pathetic- very little water pressure. Add to that, we had to run the water at least 10 minutes to get hot water, and calling it hot is generous.
This is a very laid back hotel, very relaxing, but unless you play golf (which is free- an incredible bargain) there would be little to do there day after day. If you intend to be on the go, visiting other beaches, snorkel sites, Mayan ruins, etc, as we did, this hotel might fit the bill.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Dan9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed February 7, 2012

Jan 21-28

Check in was a breeze, we were remembered by many of the staff. We were in our room, changed, then out on the beach within 10 minutes of arrival. We spent most of the week at the hotel just relaxing. From the music at the Beach club on Sunday afternoon to the daily strolls along the beach, it was one of the best times we have had. The weather was perfect all week (tho it did rain on the last day, and it was still beautiful).

Breakfast in morning was great. Fresh fruit, assorted mexican dishes, eggs made to order and hot coffee. Juan and Carlos remember special requests and fulfill them as soon as we were seated (like bringing orange juice to our table after they knew we had it every day). When I needed a knife, Juan brought me a "Cuchilla". He is teaching me spanish :)

The beach is clean, and the adjacent property to the south has even been cleaned of trash and overgrowth. They have added some nice padding to the loungers and they are always available. Out in front of the hotel, a new walking / biking path has been added .

We love the turtles out front during the day, crabs in the same area at night and saw many beautiful birds including a pelican that visited daily. We snorkeled from the southern property Club Cozumel Caribe, past Playa Azul and down to Cozumeleno (the current runs S to N). This hotel is one of the best if you want instant beach / snorkeling access all day.

We went to the Savia Spa on Thursday for a couples massage. The ladies there are wonderful and it was the icing on this trip.

Lunch was very good. Try the Chicken or Tuna Salad in avocado and the Gazpacho (3 different types).

Since the '05 hurricane, the coral is started to come back (purple fan, brain coral and other assorted types). We saw squid, lobster, many barracuda, and all sorts of other fish. Twice - we saw the dolphins swimming past the resort in the afternoon.

We had sunsets almost every night. We went to the bar, ordered Chardonnay and watched them (a pre-dinner ritual).

This hotel is quiet most of the days, getting busier later in the afternoon when the golfers return. We do not golf. We come to this resort because it is small, quiet, clean and very relaxing. We will be back.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank JLOMi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed February 3, 2012

Stayed at Playa Azul for 3 nights at the beginning of January, Lovely way to get over long flight from the UK. Comfortable room on top floor with great sea view. Quick efficient check in, Delicious breakfasts, great friendly staff. Good snorkelling from beach. Would certainly return if in the area again.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Archnet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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