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“Nice hotel, cheap condo owner?”
Review of Ixchel Beach Hotel

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Ixchel Beach Hotel
Ranked #5 of 38 Hotels in Isla Mujeres
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 18 December 2009

The Ixchel is located at the Playa Norte end of Av. Hidalgo, with the street separating the Phase 1 tower from the other tower. Phase 1 is between Av. Hidalgo and Ave Guerrero, just past a vacant lot and next to a closed beach hotel and disco. The area just behind and beside the hotel was run down, but we felt very safe where we were. We stayed at the Ixchel in Phase 1, room 508 (penthouse) from 12/11 to 12/17. From what we understand, all the rooms are owned individually and the hotel staff just manages the property. (We would advise checking out the available rooms before check in since they are all furnished differently.) We upgraded to the penthouse since it was a special vacation for us, and we were in the phase 1 tower which is on the northeast side of the property and has the rooftop jacuzzi area. The rooftop is reached from a spiral staircase on the balcony. This room is one room removed from #510, the room closest to the beach. We attempted to move to room 510 but were told that the owners don't rent that room out. This is unfortunate since 510 has a wrap around balcony and the only rooftop area with a clear view of the ocean while you are sitting down.

Pros:
--The hotel is clean and located on a very nice beach (Playa Norte). We had no problems with beach chair availability, but of course we were in the low season. The staff were reasonably friendly and helpful and the maid service was very good. There were a couple issues we found with our room (glass plate in microwave missing, burnt out light bulb in the second floor bathroom) that were never addressed, but we only asked the one time and we said there was no hurry (mistake?). We did have a circuit breaker blow for the cooktop, but this was taken care of immediately. Overall, decent service for Mexico.
--The room was comfortable and there was a lot of space (maybe due to a lack of furniture?), and the rooftop area provided even more room. The balcony was large with a clear view of the water. The jacuzzi appeared well maintained. There was an entirely separate bathroom on the rooftop area, and we thought this area would have been a great place for our kids to sleep outside! (If the disco next door burns down before we visit again, anyway)
--The hotel is located just a couple blocks from multiple restaurants and bars, the shopping area, and several tiendas, and there is a decent size grocery store about five blocks away (we found they had the cheapest beer and a nice bakery). Ciros, a great place to rent a golf cart, is just three blocks away on Av Guerrero.
--The kitchen was big with a large refrigerator. The stovetop was a nice addition to have, and we saved some cash by hitting the grocery store and cooking our own breakfasts & several lunches.
--The bathrooms were large with good water pressure for Mexico.

Cons:
--THE DISCO NEXT DOOR!!! They are very loud, start the music at 11pm and run until 4am. They were open Fri to Sun nights with the bass pounding, but mercifully stayed closed the Mon-Wed we were also there. We got them back, however, by not buying any beer or food from them when their 'beach club' was open, so who had the last laugh?!
--We were disappointed with the response from the hotel on the disco issue. We knew in advance from Tripadvisor posts about the problem, but we were never notified before arrival. On arrival we were told that the hotel's solution to the problem was to provide earplugs to the guests. It would have gone a long way with us if the hotel had tossed us a free dinner or some drinks, some kind of gesture anyway. Oh well, we didn't let it ruin our trip.
--We were disappointed with the sparseness of the room. As you can see from our photos, there were no dressers in the room, only wire "milkcrate" things which would put you right at home if you were a college student, but otherwise came across as pretty cheesy. One big hassle for us--there were no lamps!! This is a drag if one of you wants to read in bed while the other sleeps and you only have overhead lighting. The futon/couch is pretty thin. It would be good for kids up, but would get to be uncomfortable for adults. We were able to see into several other rooms and found they were furnished much better than ours (some even had lamps!), so we believe the cheapness and lack of furnishings was a reflection on the condo owner, not the hotel itself. This was somewhat disappointing when we had spent extra for an upgrade.
--A down side with the penthouse is that you have to ask to have the jacuzzi turned on, and expect a warm-up time of a couple hours before it is hot. We would usually ask about 2pm for it to be turned on, and it was hot by sunset. The staff only forgot to do this once, but by then I had found the breaker so I could turn it on myself (as well as the temperature control so we could get it warmer). The staff would usually turn it off about 4am, so if you want a warm jacuzzi to wake up to make sure to arrange this.
--The rooftop could have been arranged a little better to make ocean viewing nicer while you were sitting down. It would have been nice if the owner would have provided some kind of radio or something for the rooftop area, but we get that the recession has been hard on everyone, condo owners included.

Overall, we would say that this was a nice, clean hotel with large rooms and we received our money's worth. We would certainly stay again (and bring kids) if the price were right. It is certainly not a luxury hotel, but it is comfortable.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank shelsadMN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 13 December 2009

Four friends and I stayed a week at Ixchel. We were in a two bedroom suite that slept 6. It was beautiful and the hotel staff was terrific. The balcony looked over the pool/bar area and the beach was in sight. Giovanni at the front desk was a wondergul gentleman and always willing to help or give advice. Jimmy is the BEST bartender and Daniel is the mesera muy mejor! Take time to get to know these guys - they are fantastic. They let us dock our Ipods at the bar so we could jam to our own music. We were there as Ida was coming in so we spent alot of time at the bar since it was raining. We were glad there werent children all over the place - it was very quiet. Can't wait to go back!

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled with friends
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2  Thank TexasTravelerIV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 December 2009

My husband just retired and he chose Isla as his "retirement vacation". No argument from me! We had stayed at Ixchel Phase 1 in condo 404 (and 403). This is our 3rd trip to Isla and 2nd stay at this same condo...we love it. We booked through the owners website, I don't know if I can post that here but they are also on VRBO.
We usually do All Inclusive vacations and are a big fan of the AI...but, not on Isla. The food and drink are so good and very reasonable. Not to mention within walking distance from Ixchel and anywhere on the north end of the island.
There were 4 of us and we shared the living room, kitchen and deck. We had the one bedroom suite (404), king size bed, safe, tv, bathroom with a separate sink and counter space, area. This room also had access to the large deck that overlooked the pool, palm trees, beach and ocean. You can access the deck either from the living room or our bedroom. The deck had a big table with 4 chairs around it, also a few more chairs and a small table down by the bedroom entrance. It also had a grill.
The living room had a nice flat screen tv that I would turn on to listen to music while we got ready for the day and also check the weather.
The other couple we brought with us had the standard room with 2 beds and bathroom. Their room connected to the living room area. The kitchen had a big water dispenser on the counter to drink from and thankfully a bottle opener magnet on the fridge (we forgot ours) to open our cervesas.
We had a great time, the place was immaculate! The staff were always pleasant and willing to help us with anything. Our coffee pot was cracked, they quickly replaced it and when they saw us in the lobby, they asked if we needed anything else. Giovanni at the front desk was the best! He remembered me from 2 years ago and gave me a hug when we checked in.
We packed a few extra ice cube trays and a collapsible cooler to bring to the beach, no problem. The beer store is just a block away. Comono's will serve you food and drinks on the beach as well...Daniel was very nice and he was always around to take your order. 2x1 happy hour starts at noon.
The beach right in front of Ixchel is my favorite beach. Lots of white sand and plenty of loungers and umbrellas to go around. It was the end of the low season during our stay and I'd get down to the beach around 9am and sometimes be the only one there for a while. The weekends were a little busier. The water is shallow and as you go out into the ocean further it will get just a little deep then it starts to get shallow again. We floated out a few hundred yards and the water was below my waist. All sandy bottom too, it was heaven.
The noise from Chimbos was only a problem a couple nights over the weekend, when we had the deck door open and the AC off. I can imagine that some of the other rooms closer to their property would have more of a problem with this. Why do they start up their loud music in the wee hours of the morning when there is no one there?
A few highlights -
--Take a taxi to the Soggy Peso for ribs on Sunday! The taxi cost is under $3US and the ribs and fixings are to die for...they serve at 1pm.
--Miguel's Moonlight for after dinner drinks. He's located just off of Hidalgo on Madero...you'll see his little sign lit up. IMHO he makes the best margaritas (2x1 from 6 - 9) and he's an awesome guy!
--The rotisserie chicken place just a short walk from the condo on Hidalgo. I think the chicken there is better than ours. A whole chicken, beans, rice (rice or spaghetti), peppers and tortillas for 90 pesos...that fills 3 of us up!
I typed up a very extensive Isla Mujeres review with pictures on islamujeres.info "stories" section.
I can't wait to go back. When I do, I'll stay here again.
Any questions feel free to ask away!
Kristi

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled with friends
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6  Thank ClaudiaMN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 November 2009

We just returned from a ten night stay from 11/11 to 11/21 in unit #406 which we rented through vrbo by the owner.. The resort was on a beautiful beach, and chairs and umbrellas were readily available. The resort has a restaurant on site which was open for breakfast and lunch, as well as cocktails delivered to you on the beach. The unit was well decorated and had everything we needed for a wonderful stay. The staff were responsive to all requests and questions, and could not do enough to make sure that we were happy. The resort grounds are immaculate. There were a fair amount of kids there when we there. The beach is very beautiful and popular, and therefore many boats would anchor off the shore and unload their passengers onto the beach. The resort is a short walk to a street with only pedestrian traffic that has many choices and is lined with all types of little shops. The only major problem we had as mentioned in other posts was the disco next door. The owner blasted bass pounding and thumping music until 4:00 AM in the morning. The percussion of the bass could not be masked despite AC and a fan on in our room simultaneously, as well as ear plugs. The worse part about it was there were no patrons at the disco, the owner was only doing it to be spiteful. We left feeling a bit sleep deprived, but would return as that was only negative issue we had.

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank dogcabo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 November 2009

We stayed at the Ixchel for 5 days for our wedding with 30 family and friends. My husband and I rented Unit 501/502 in Phase 1 as we wanted the rooftop deck for our weclome reception - it was spectacular. The rooms themselves were great, the condo was decorated nicely and we loved that the rooftop deck could be accessed outside of coming through our room. (you can get to the PH level from the elevators and just open the door to the upper deck) The location is beyond fantastic and we always had a beach chair and no crowds, so we timed our visit perfectly. Daniel the beach water from Comono's was fantastic and the front desk staff was incredible (Giovanni was the best!) We had friends in family in several different units and they were all similar - some decorated better than others, but all in all, they are great rooms. The beds in some are typical Mexican beds - a wee bit on the firm side, so prepare for that. The best unit in the hotel, in my opinion, would have to be unti 609/610 in Phase 2. This by far gave you a great view of not only Playa Norte, but the best view of the sunsets over the mainland. My only complaint on our room (501/502) is that you couldn't see the sunset from our decks.
The only real issue I have with Ixchel is the disco that is right next door to the Phase 1 building - Chimbos I think is the name. From Thursday - Sunday during our visit, we would hear the thumping of the music (we are talking window rattling some nights) from 11 pm until around 4 am. We went down to investigate one night and there was NO ONE in the disco, but yet, they still played the music incredibly loud. Several of our group called to complain, but the front desk really can't do much about it - bless their hearts. They are limited - they told us several times they called the police, but I don't think they can do much. There is a greater issue at hand between the owner of the disco and the local mayor, so we were told. Not sure, but it's too bad because it really puts on damper on a great hotel with the perfect location and stellar service by their staff. A couple shots of tequila and some ear plugs will help, but if you are a light sleeper, I would recommend somewhere not on this part of Playa as I heard other people complain from near by hotels about the noise as well. I sure hope they get this worked out sooner rather than later as I would have given Ixchel 5 stars if it weren't for the noise. Definately woudl return in a heartbeat if the disco goes away!

  • Stayed: November 2009
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2  Thank amh1769
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2009

Ixchel was absolutely perfect- my boyfriend was looking for a comfortable, clean, resort with amenities, while I was looking for something a little more rustic and authentic (NOT Cancun!!). This fabulous hotel allowed us to combine our interests! The room (just a normal double occupancy room) was comfortable and clean. The view wasn't exceptional, but we didn't spend much time in the room anyway. The concierge was wonderful. The beach in front of the hotel was beautiful- it got a little crowded (it's no Tulum!) and there were a LOT of kids at the hotel when we went, but it was fine.

The hotel is right off of the "main drag" where you can find excellent local food and entertainment and shopping.

The pool is not heated, and it was a little too cold to swim.

Overall- we are going back this year! I highly recommend it, as long as you can handle the occasional handful of rowdy 8 year olds :) Great value and totally worth it!

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank mevPhiladephia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 November 2009

My husband & I went on a 10 day trip to Isla Mujeres and stayed at Ixchel Resort. We just love it here.The condo we stayed in had a great view off the balcony and the condo was very spacious.We booked our room off of VRBO.We just love the staff and the service.We highly recommend this resort

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank mexicokpl09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ixchel Beach Hotel

Address: Playa Norte S/N | Centro, Isla Mujeres 77400, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Isla Mujeres
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 38 Hotels in Isla Mujeres
Price Range: $145 - $608 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Ixchel Beach Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 100
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Among the best hotels in Isla Mujeres, visit Ixchel Beach Hotel, a two wing, two phase condotel complex with 117 rooms in Isla Mujeres. East Wing (Phase One) with 48 rooms, 5 stories and opened in June 2006; West Wing (Phase Two) with 69 rooms, 6 stories and opened in August 2007. Both properties (see Accomodation Remark below) are designed in Mexican casual and modern stylish buildings located at the beautiful North Beach on the colorful island of Isla Mujeres (Women Island).Ixchel for the Mayans was the Goddess of love, fertility and the moon. Walking a few steps from downtown of this friendly island and facing the most beautiful white sand & powder touch beaches of Isla Mujeres, in the Yucatan Peninsula and the Mexican Caribbean, our Isla Mujeres hotel offers warm personable service in an upscale, intimate island experience perfect for families and romantics.If you want a great escape to a Isla Mujeres hotel, our hotel is ideal for the relaxing weekend getaway or a romantic honeymoon retreat. Treat yourself to all of the luxury that our Ixchel Hotel in Isla Mujeres has to offer and enjoy the surrounding areas, activities and beauty.Premier in Isla Mujeres hotels, the Ixchel Beach Hotel offers luxurious amenities, outstanding service and a tranquil atmosphere to completely relax and enjoy your Mexican vacation. You won't find a more beautiful or more convenient location to soak in the sun and experience this amazing island of Isla Mujeres.If you are looking among hotels in Isla Mujeres, look no further than the Ixchel Beach Hotel. You won't be disappointed. You, the guest, are our number one priority and your comfort and enjoyment during your vacations in Mexico and lodging experience are our primary concern. We will do everything we can to make your stay nothing short of spectacular. ... more   less 
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