Pros

  • Private white-sand beach
  • Several restaurants, including a 24-hour buffet
  • SPAreal offers facials, body treatments, wraps, scrubs, and salon treatments
  • Kids' club for ages four to 12, plus a "teen club" video-game room
  • Wedding services and lovely oceanfront wedding gazebo
  • Free loaner bikes and bike tours
  • Snorkeling equipment and free introductory scuba lessons in the pool
  • Room service available for no extra charge
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout
See More Pros

Cons

  • Beach has rocks and sometimes murky water
  • Standard rooms are small and far from main buildings
  • Premium food and alcohol costs extra for guests in standard rooms
  • Extra charge for lobster
See More Cons

Bottom Line

This upper-middle-range, all-inclusive resort has 287 rooms, over half of which have ocean views and all of which come with hand-carved furniture and modern art on the walls. Many of the rooms are near the protected white-sand beach -- but the surf itself isn't the best in the area, as there are rocks and the water can be murky. There are world-famous beaches nearby, however, and the enormous, free-form pool provides an alternative venue for sunning and swimming. What sets the Gran Porto apart from other area resorts is the location in the center of popular Playa del Carmen, one block from the Fifth Avenue shopping district, surrounded by bars, restaurants, and nightlife. If a pristine beach with clear water is a priority, though, consider Sandos Playacar Beach Resort and Spa, which has the longest stretch of unspoiled white-sand beach in the area.

See More Bottom Line

Amenities

  • Fitness Center
  • Internet
  • Jacuzzi
  • Pool
  • Spa

Oyster Hotel Review

Panama Jack Resorts Playa del Carmen

Scene

Mexican hacienda-style tourist property with special treatment for honeymooners

The Gran Porto Resort is reminiscent of a colonial Mexican hacienda, with plenty of swooping marble stairways, stone columns, balconies and patios, and open-air hallways that get lots of natural light. There are also tile roofs, wrought-iron railings, rustic stone walls and arches, vaulted brick ceilings, and bright tropical flowers and plants. Colors are bold, with a predominance of gold and terra cotta as well as accents of deep red.

Staff members greet guests with a friendly hand over the heart, although the fact that everyone does so takes a little of the sincerity out of the gesture. The lobby is large and impressive, with elegant, but not stuffy, tufted furniture, chandeliers of iron or colored glass, and cafe tables where guests can hang out with a coffee or a cocktail, perhaps with an eye on one of the numerous flat-screen TVs mounted on the lobby walls. There is a lovely porch with views of the busy pool. The property is bustling with activity from the early morning into the late night hours, and there is even a 24-hour buffet offering hors d’oeuvres, drinks, coffee, and snacks to help ensure no one every goes hungry. 

Off the lobby, there are picturesque open-air hallways teeming with plants as well as several courtyards with shaded seating. The freeform pool is enormous, large enough for there to be an aqua fitness class at one end without disturbing guests on the opposite side of the pool. In the center of the pool is a large thatched hut shading a round bar, accessible by footbridge. Just off the edge of the pool is the white sand beach, although the seawater in this area can be murky and the presence of rocks in the surf means that guests may want to wear water shoes. There are plenty of lounge chairs here, although they are quite close together, as well as a number of Balinese beds with canopies for seaside luxury.

Guests who prefer quiet with their sun may prefer hanging out at the rooftop hot tub terrace, which has panoramic views  and shaded hammocks. On the third floor, by the sushi bar, there is also a smaller, quieter, more private pool.

Although the resort caters to a wide range of leisure tourists, honeymooners receive the royal treatment, with an extravagance of rose petals and welcome baskets in their rooms for a romantic send-off into married life.

See More Scene

Location

In the heart of popular Playa del Carmen, near luxury shopping, water sports, and Mayan ruins

The Gran Porto Resort is located in the heart of the popular tourist city of Playa del Carmen, just a block from Fifth Avenue, with its bars, restaurants, and high-end shops. El Camaleon Golf Club, an 18-hole PGA golf course, is 10 minutes from the resort by car. There are opportunities for parasailing, windsurfing, and water skiing just up the beach, and swimming and snorkeling is excellent right off the shore. 

The ferry to Cozumel, known for its amazing snorkeling and scuba diving, is within walking distance and the Cancun Airport is 45 minutes away by car. The Mayan ruins of Tulum are a 50-minute drive down the coast and there are several eco-archeological theme parks in the area. The most famous of these is Xcaret, a 15-minute drive from the resort, where families can spend a fun-filled day exploring jungles, rivers, caves, and swimming the park’s underground river. Xcaret hosts rotating exhibits and has a butterfly pavilion, a beach, a lazy riverboat ride, and a number of inlets and swimming holes for snorkeling, scuba diving, or swimming with dolphins. Nearby Xplor Park offers more adrenaline-fueled fun, with two miles of zipline that whip through the jungle and underground into a web of caves. ATVs and underground rafting are offered, as well as nighttime adventure activities. 

See More Location

Rooms

Peaceful, quiet rooms with elegant decor and lovely Roman-style tile showers

Rooms at the Gran Porto Resort are spacious and airy, but not huge, with lovely hand-carved wooden furniture and striking modern art on the walls. Rooms are painted light gold, with white ceilings, moldings, and colonial-style columns; some have built-in marble tables. The overall effect is peaceful and elegant, without being stuffy or uptight. Out of 287 rooms, 170 have ocean views, and some ground-floor suites have private patios that open right onto the beach. Other rooms face the street, but traffic noise shouldn't be a problem, and the street ends at the ocean. Higher-end rooms offer access to the next door companion resort, which is for adults only.

Standard Rooms are spotless, but on the small side. The perks are excellent, though, with hypo-allergenic bedding, 42-inch flat-screen TVs with DVD players, and terraces. Bathrooms lack tubs, but the showers are glassed-in and modern, done in Romanesque tile and stone, and are big enough for two people. Minibars are stocked with free soft drinks, bottled water, and beer.

Suites are larger, with walk-in closets and capsule coffeemakers. Some come with designated beach cabanas; others feature premium liquor cabinets with full bottles upended and spigots so that the liquor flows like water. The Gran Master Suite is stocked with Bulgari toiletries and comes with a Bose stereo and an iPod pre-loaded with music for every taste. Lounging options include a hammock on the private patio, a pillow-top mattress, and a comfy couch.

See More Rooms

Features

Unforgettable weddings, excellent kids' club, spa, and a swim-up sushi bar

The Gran Porto Resort has a ton of on-site amenities, ranging from the quiet pool on the third floor, complete with a swim-up sushi bar, to regular aqua aerobics classes in the huge, and often busy, main pool. Kayaking, snorkeling, water volleyball, and even free intro scuba lessons are included, as are cooking classes and loaner bikes. The kids' club offers a wide variety of supervised activities for children aged four to 12, and includes a playground with a pirate ship and the Pirate Adventure mini-golf course for swashbucklers in training. 

Parents can grab beach time or a spa treatment at SpaReal. In a lush setting, accessed via a sweeping spiral staircase lined with hanging plants, the spa offers a full menu of massage, wraps, aromatherapy, and beauty treatments, as well as hot tubs, a cold plunge pool, a sauna, and a steam room. There is a big fitness room with large picture windows, flat-screen TVs, and an ample number of cardio machines and weight training equipment.

The Gran Porto stages around 300 weddings a year, many in the property's charming wedding gazebo with its panoramic ocean view. Photos will be breathtaking, and the adjacent banquet room is pretty and flexible in terms of layout. There are picturesque stone walls, grand picture windows, and lots of natural light, but the carpet is a tad busy.

Online check-in is available up to 48 hours before arrival. The hotel provides check-in gifts for kids (and check-in drinks for adults) and can provide babysitting services.

See More Features

All-Inclusive / Food

Lots of restaurants, room service, and a 24-hour buffet

Guests at the resort have a wide variety of food options, including room service during limited hours, which comes at no extra charge. The main buffet restaurant, Albatros, is casual and has indoor and outdoor seating. Large, colorful, abstract paintings hang on the walls, and the beautiful vaulted ceiling is done in brick and stone. There are no tablecloths, and chairs are simple and made of wood and vinyl. Food is served at a variety of stations, with room for guests to move between them, which helps avoid the buffet stampedes that occur at many other all-inclusive properties. Il Pescatore is an a la carte Italian cafe with indoor and outdoor seating and a casual dress code. Decor includes crisp white and light-green table linens, white chairs, and pretty place settings. Abstract food paintings line the walls and the views are beautiful, adding to the restaurant's charm.

Maria’s serves gourmet Mexican cuisine a la carte in a more traditional setting, with terra-cotta floors, bright Mexican ceramics, and modern portraits that give a feel of the area. Sandals and casual dress are not appropriate at Maria’s. There are plenty of snack bars throughout the property, including the Health Sushi Bar, which serves Asian cuisine, drinks, and fresh juices on a third-floor roof terrace. For night owls, there is a 24-hour buffet serving snacks and finger food, sandwiches, and fruit, with an open bar, a TV, and a supply of games. The romantically inclined can splurge on dinner for two on a private terrace. After dinner, there is a full slate of entertainment, including theme parties and live music performances.

See More All-Inclusive / Food

Things You Should Know About Panama Jack Resorts Playa del Carmen

Also Known As

  • Gran Porto Real Resort and Spa

Address

Av. Constituyentes No. 1, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico

Website

Oyster Hotel Review

Panama Jack Resorts Playa del Carmen

Scene

Mexican hacienda-style tourist property with special treatment for honeymooners

The Gran Porto Resort is reminiscent of a colonial Mexican hacienda, with plenty of swooping marble stairways, stone columns, balconies and patios, and open-air hallways that get lots of natural light. There are also tile roofs, wrought-iron railings, rustic stone walls and arches, vaulted brick ceilings, and bright tropical flowers and plants. Colors are bold, with a predominance of gold and terra cotta as well as accents of deep red.

Staff members greet guests with a friendly hand over the heart, although the fact that everyone does so takes a little of the sincerity out of the gesture. The lobby is large and impressive, with elegant, but not stuffy, tufted furniture, chandeliers of iron or colored glass, and cafe tables where guests can hang out with a coffee or a cocktail, perhaps with an eye on one of the numerous flat-screen TVs mounted on the lobby walls. There is a lovely porch with views of the busy pool. The property is bustling with activity from the early morning into the late night hours, and there is even a 24-hour buffet offering hors d’oeuvres, drinks, coffee, and snacks to help ensure no one every goes hungry. 

Off the lobby, there are picturesque open-air hallways teeming with plants as well as several courtyards with shaded seating. The freeform pool is enormous, large enough for there to be an aqua fitness class at one end without disturbing guests on the opposite side of the pool. In the center of the pool is a large thatched hut shading a round bar, accessible by footbridge. Just off the edge of the pool is the white sand beach, although the seawater in this area can be murky and the presence of rocks in the surf means that guests may want to wear water shoes. There are plenty of lounge chairs here, although they are quite close together, as well as a number of Balinese beds with canopies for seaside luxury.

Guests who prefer quiet with their sun may prefer hanging out at the rooftop hot tub terrace, which has panoramic views  and shaded hammocks. On the third floor, by the sushi bar, there is also a smaller, quieter, more private pool.

Although the resort caters to a wide range of leisure tourists, honeymooners receive the royal treatment, with an extravagance of rose petals and welcome baskets in their rooms for a romantic send-off into married life.

See More Scene

Location

In the heart of popular Playa del Carmen, near luxury shopping, water sports, and Mayan ruins

The Gran Porto Resort is located in the heart of the popular tourist city of Playa del Carmen, just a block from Fifth Avenue, with its bars, restaurants, and high-end shops. El Camaleon Golf Club, an 18-hole PGA golf course, is 10 minutes from the resort by car. There are opportunities for parasailing, windsurfing, and water skiing just up the beach, and swimming and snorkeling is excellent right off the shore. 

The ferry to Cozumel, known for its amazing snorkeling and scuba diving, is within walking distance and the Cancun Airport is 45 minutes away by car. The Mayan ruins of Tulum are a 50-minute drive down the coast and there are several eco-archeological theme parks in the area. The most famous of these is Xcaret, a 15-minute drive from the resort, where families can spend a fun-filled day exploring jungles, rivers, caves, and swimming the park’s underground river. Xcaret hosts rotating exhibits and has a butterfly pavilion, a beach, a lazy riverboat ride, and a number of inlets and swimming holes for snorkeling, scuba diving, or swimming with dolphins. Nearby Xplor Park offers more adrenaline-fueled fun, with two miles of zipline that whip through the jungle and underground into a web of caves. ATVs and underground rafting are offered, as well as nighttime adventure activities. 

See More Location

Rooms

Peaceful, quiet rooms with elegant decor and lovely Roman-style tile showers

Rooms at the Gran Porto Resort are spacious and airy, but not huge, with lovely hand-carved wooden furniture and striking modern art on the walls. Rooms are painted light gold, with white ceilings, moldings, and colonial-style columns; some have built-in marble tables. The overall effect is peaceful and elegant, without being stuffy or uptight. Out of 287 rooms, 170 have ocean views, and some ground-floor suites have private patios that open right onto the beach. Other rooms face the street, but traffic noise shouldn't be a problem, and the street ends at the ocean. Higher-end rooms offer access to the next door companion resort, which is for adults only.

Standard Rooms are spotless, but on the small side. The perks are excellent, though, with hypo-allergenic bedding, 42-inch flat-screen TVs with DVD players, and terraces. Bathrooms lack tubs, but the showers are glassed-in and modern, done in Romanesque tile and stone, and are big enough for two people. Minibars are stocked with free soft drinks, bottled water, and beer.

Suites are larger, with walk-in closets and capsule coffeemakers. Some come with designated beach cabanas; others feature premium liquor cabinets with full bottles upended and spigots so that the liquor flows like water. The Gran Master Suite is stocked with Bulgari toiletries and comes with a Bose stereo and an iPod pre-loaded with music for every taste. Lounging options include a hammock on the private patio, a pillow-top mattress, and a comfy couch.

See More Rooms

Features

Unforgettable weddings, excellent kids' club, spa, and a swim-up sushi bar

The Gran Porto Resort has a ton of on-site amenities, ranging from the quiet pool on the third floor, complete with a swim-up sushi bar, to regular aqua aerobics classes in the huge, and often busy, main pool. Kayaking, snorkeling, water volleyball, and even free intro scuba lessons are included, as are cooking classes and loaner bikes. The kids' club offers a wide variety of supervised activities for children aged four to 12, and includes a playground with a pirate ship and the Pirate Adventure mini-golf course for swashbucklers in training. 

Parents can grab beach time or a spa treatment at SpaReal. In a lush setting, accessed via a sweeping spiral staircase lined with hanging plants, the spa offers a full menu of massage, wraps, aromatherapy, and beauty treatments, as well as hot tubs, a cold plunge pool, a sauna, and a steam room. There is a big fitness room with large picture windows, flat-screen TVs, and an ample number of cardio machines and weight training equipment.

The Gran Porto stages around 300 weddings a year, many in the property's charming wedding gazebo with its panoramic ocean view. Photos will be breathtaking, and the adjacent banquet room is pretty and flexible in terms of layout. There are picturesque stone walls, grand picture windows, and lots of natural light, but the carpet is a tad busy.

Online check-in is available up to 48 hours before arrival. The hotel provides check-in gifts for kids (and check-in drinks for adults) and can provide babysitting services.

See More Features

All-Inclusive / Food

Lots of restaurants, room service, and a 24-hour buffet

Guests at the resort have a wide variety of food options, including room service during limited hours, which comes at no extra charge. The main buffet restaurant, Albatros, is casual and has indoor and outdoor seating. Large, colorful, abstract paintings hang on the walls, and the beautiful vaulted ceiling is done in brick and stone. There are no tablecloths, and chairs are simple and made of wood and vinyl. Food is served at a variety of stations, with room for guests to move between them, which helps avoid the buffet stampedes that occur at many other all-inclusive properties. Il Pescatore is an a la carte Italian cafe with indoor and outdoor seating and a casual dress code. Decor includes crisp white and light-green table linens, white chairs, and pretty place settings. Abstract food paintings line the walls and the views are beautiful, adding to the restaurant's charm.

Maria’s serves gourmet Mexican cuisine a la carte in a more traditional setting, with terra-cotta floors, bright Mexican ceramics, and modern portraits that give a feel of the area. Sandals and casual dress are not appropriate at Maria’s. There are plenty of snack bars throughout the property, including the Health Sushi Bar, which serves Asian cuisine, drinks, and fresh juices on a third-floor roof terrace. For night owls, there is a 24-hour buffet serving snacks and finger food, sandwiches, and fruit, with an open bar, a TV, and a supply of games. The romantically inclined can splurge on dinner for two on a private terrace. After dinner, there is a full slate of entertainment, including theme parties and live music performances.

See More All-Inclusive / Food

Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Babysitting Services

  • Beach

  • Beauty / Hair Salon

  • Business Center

  • Cable

  • Children's Pool

  • Concierge

  • Fitness Center

  • Free Breakfast

  • Gameroom / Arcade

  • Internet

  • Jacuzzi

  • Kids Allowed

  • Meeting / Conference Rooms

  • Mini Bar (with liquor)

  • Pool

  • Rental Car Service Desk Onsite

  • Room Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Spa

  • Supervised Kids Activities

  • Swim-Up Bar

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.