Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
Located on the beach, next to the Cozumel Ferry and a short walk to Playa del Carmen’s bustling Quinta Avenida
Playa del Carmen (named for Our Lady of Mount Carmel, the patron saint of Cancun) is a beautiful, charming resort town and the third largest city in Quintana Roo on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. About 70 km south of Cancun and 20 km west of Cozumel, it's centrally located in the center of the Mayan Riviera and is quickly becoming one of the most hip vacation spots (though more relaxing and less wild than Cancun). It used to be the home of the ancient Mayans and after that a small fishing village, but now Playa del Carmen -- or "Playa," as the locals call it -- is full of exciting nightclubs, popular restaurants, cute boutiques, and resort hotels that sit on lovely white sand beaches. Because many of the businesses are European-run, the rest of the town retains a hint of European flair. The main tourist thoroughfare of Playa is the cobblestone-lined, pedestrian street Quinta Avenida (Fifth Avenue), but there are plenty of fun outdoor activities for visitors, too, such as snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking and sailing. The offshore reef is part of the second largest reef system in the world, Mesoamerican Barrier Reef.
The luxurious, all-inclusive Palace Resorts’ Playacar Palace is located directly on the beach in the Playacar resort community, next to the Cozumel Island ferry and a short walk to Quinta Avida in downtown Playa del Carmen. Most of the 208 stylishly decorated rooms have balconies offering stunning views of the Caribbean Sea. All come with bathrobes and slippers, a whirlpool, free Wi-Fi, and in-room wine and a liquor dispenser filled with quality brands. The property itself is beautifully grand, yet has a nice intimate feel to it -- especially with the staff that is known for treating guests like family. In addition to beach fun, there’s also an abundance of other on-site activities: table tennis, aqua aerobics, access to a neighboring 18-hole golf course, water polo, karaoke, and live shows nightly. Three restaurants offer international cuisine in both casual and elegant settings -- though for an all-inclusive, the selection can feel limiting. For further amenities and dining options, the resort provides free transportation to other Palace properties and resorts in the hotel zone.