Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive

…when it’s got to be all or nothing…

When I first moved to Playa Del Carmen, some ex-pats showed me one of their little tricks.

They would alternate between visiting different Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts…every lunchtime.

They’d figured out how to bypass security and get a massive free meal everyday.

The result…I got to visit most of the Playa Del Carmen all inclusive hotels.

And within a month I’d turned into one fat American.

I had to stop.

Most people try and work out so they look good on the beach.

I was doing the opposite.

I was eating and eating until my face was round and podgy.

Perhaps that’s acceptable if you’re married.

But when you’re single and live by the beach, it’s a disaster.

So I stopped with the cheeky free meals.

I still visit the Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts now and again when friends have stayed there.

I think I’ve learned which ones offer the best value.

The Alternative Accommodation Choices In Playa Del Carmen

Many people think about Playa Del Carmen and want to know about all inclusive resorts.

This page covers everything you need to know.

But before that, here are some links that cover all the different accommodation options in Playa Del Carmen.

If you’re simply looking for resorts in Playa Del Carmen (non all-inclusive) or Playa Del Carmen hotels, then you can easily check out these links for some specific information.

If you’re a large group of people, then it’s great value to get one of the condo hotels in Playa Del Carmen

Or indulge in a Playa Del Carmen villa rental.

There are many condo hotels with amenities that rival the best resorts here in Playa.

In Playa Del Carmen, there isn’t a perfect correlation between cost and quality.

Some of the best hotels are not the most expensive.

That also goes for the best resorts in Playa Del Carmen.

Don’t think that a four figure price tag means great quality.

I’ve created an article about the best all-inclusive resorts in Playa Del Carmen and you’ll see that they’re not the most expensive.

Some Playa Del Carmen hotels are adults only, while others are considered family resorts.

Sunbathing fiends should stay at one of the many hotels on the beach.

Those that like the personal touch will love the selection of boutique hotels or small hotels in Playa Del Carmen.

Finally, if you’re saving all your money for tequila then try searching for a cheap hotel or a hostel in Playa Del Carmen.

About The Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive Resorts

The Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts offer some of the classiest names in the entire world.

If you want uber 5-star luxury, then you’ll find it in Playa Del Carmen.

But you can also find a variety of different resorts, each of them coming with very different price tags.

Unlike some destinations, the all inclusive resorts are dotted across Playa Del Carmen.

So if you are very picky about the resort location, then you have a number of options.

Playa Del Carmen is not like some destinations where they group all the all-inclusive hotels together, and then fence everyone in so most people only see the airport and the resort zone.

Advantages Of A Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive Resort

There are many advantages of an all inclusive resort, not least that everything is included in the price.

That’s particularly helpful for people with a tendency to blow $400 USD on one night’s drinking.

At a Playa Del Carmen all inclusive you won’t have to leave the resort in order to get a flavor of a beautiful beach city.

All the resorts in this article offer direct beach access.

However, the beaches are not private and fenced off for the resort.

Which is a good thing.

So, although you’ll be spending most of your time at the resort, there’s still a chance to mix with other people.

At some destinations there is nothing other than the all-inclusive resorts in isolation.

At these types of locations, people don’t leave the resort because there is nothing else to do.

In Playa Del Carmen there are hundreds of activities and tours to go on, so you can indulge in the all inclusive luxury but still see the full beauty of Mexico.

The Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts have deals with tour companies, meaning they can offer a package deal which saves you money on all the tours.

All inclusive resorts are invariably owned by international franchises, and some might say that they are not very personal.

However, if anything goes wrong then they’ll do everything to protect their reputation.

Just say that you will leave a scathing TripAdvisor review and they’ll quickly get the manager to sort out your problem!

What’s The Food And Drink Like At The All Inclusive Resorts In Playa?

Like anywhere in the world, the Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts include local Mexican drinks.

Anywhere else that might mean drinking revolting vodka.

In Playa Del Carmen it means tequila and mescal (a special kind of tequila).

Which is, frankly, quite brilliant.

Local drinks are better than international ones.

Even the beer.

Think about it, Corona comes from Mexico and it’s not even in the top five of the best local beers.

My flabby belly was testimony to the quality of the Mexican food on offer.

Each all inclusive resort offers a huge variety of international cuisine.

You can eat something different every day.

Or you can do what I did, eat everything on the same day.

Many of the resorts also have signature meals so you never have to make do with the standard stale buffet.

They also decorate the restaurants differently, so it feels like you’re dining in different locations – even though you haven’t left the resort.

Pretty tricky!

Disadvantages Of A Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive

The downside of all inclusive resorts are the same all over the world:

  • There’s the feeling of being cocooned in a little bubble, and not seeing anything but the resort and the airport.
  • Then you feel like you’re effectively paying twice whenever you leave the resort and eat or drink elsewhere.
  • And all inclusive resorts are never full of the most inspiring of people.  It’s hardly the place for making interesting new friends.

In Playa Del Carmen, all these disadvantages are magnified.

Playa Del Carmen is not your standard white-sand-blue-ocean destination.

It’s not like some remote island where there’s nothing to do.

I’ve been in Playa Del Carmen for three years and I still haven’t experienced everything.

If you just stay in a Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resort, then you’re missing a lot.

Why All Inclusive Isn’t Always The Best Choice

So you’re at the Playa Del Carmen all inclusive, sipping on a cocktail, getting fat from the Mexican food, and slowly relaxing into vacation vacillation.

That’s great.

And if that sounds like the ultimate vacation bliss, then go all inclusive.

But there is so much happening all around you that you’re missing.

5th Avenue has hundreds of bars and restaurants, each full of interesting people and a great atmosphere.

There are beaches further up the coast where there is nothing but white sand and your own footprints.

Playa Del Carmen’s nightlife will blow you away.

Think of dancing with your feet in the sand with a margarita in hand.

Or downing tequila with some funny Mexican dude you just met.

Playa Del Carmen is very informal.

Interesting and exciting things are always happening, and the formality of a Playa Del Carmen all inclusive seems to be the antithesis of the general vibe here.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the all inclusive resorts aren’t very Mexican.

This is good by some standards, and bad by others.

You could be anywhere in the world.

But you’re not!

You’re in Mexico baby!

Unfortunately, you won’t feel like you’re in Mexico at the all inclusive resorts.

Different Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive Resorts

Let’s keep things simple.

The Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts are all very close to the beach, have high levels of service, and include everything.

Here’s my guide to the different all-inclusive resort options and who will enjoy each of them the most.

1. Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun

A 5-star resort that’s on the beach 20 minutes out of town.

Adults only.

Pros – Incredible décor, beautiful rooms and restaurants, fantastic service.

This is a place for people who really want to indulge.

Some of the rooms are double the size of my apartment.

Cons – This place is seriously expensive.

The cheapest room in high season is $870 USD – and this price goes up every year!

Still, you get what you pay for.

2. Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Perla

A 5-star adults only option on the beach.

Pros – Wow, wow, wow.

That’s what most people say when walk in.

This resort is stunning.

Go there if you can afford it.

Plus, it’s only five minutes from downtown Playa Del Carmen, so it’s much easier for exploring the town.

Cons – You need money (more than average) to stay there.

In low season, the prices range from $560 USD to $1760 USD for a room.

But this is real luxury.

3. El Dorado Maroma

A beachfront, 5-star property that is approximately fifteen minutes from the center of town.

Adults only.

Pros – It looks good and has its own personality.

Cons – Not the best part of the beach, and not as beautiful as Paradisus or Secrets Maroma.

When the prices range from $700 USD– 2500 USD a night, you can do better elsewhere.

4. Royal Hideaway Playacar

On the beach and often used by wedding parties.

Pros – Some good deals if you are looking for a wedding package.

One of the cheaper Playa Del Carmen all inclusive options with rooms from $420 USD in low season.

Cons – Poor service, average food, and nothing very special.

In fact, if I had to rank all inclusive resorts in Playa Del Carmen this one would probably come last.

5. Playacar Palace

A family-centric, all-inclusive on the beach.

It’s the one I recommend to friends with kids coming from the States.

Pros – An accommodating family resort so adults can relax while children play.

Reasonable prices, great international and Mexican food, and a good atmosphere.

Cons – Don’t go if you don’t have kids.

6. Blue Diamond Riviera Maya

$518 USD – $1470 USD a night, dependent on the room and season.

Nice place on the beach.

Pros – The prototypical classic all-inclusive.

Knows how to keep customers happy and keeps offering good food and drinks.

Cons – There are definitely more exciting options in Playa Del Carmen.

This place isn’t very inspiring.

7. Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Esmeralda

A family all inclusive that’s in a quiet part of town and on the beach.

Pros – Very good prices – you can get a suite for $206 USD in low season. Obviously more in high season.

You get to save your money for activities, attractions, and excursions.

Cons – Not as big and fancy as the other all inclusive resorts, although this is a good thing if you want to get out of the “resort bubble.”

8. Hotel Riu Palace Mexico

Family resort just out of town.

Pros – Bring the kids and relax by the pool – this place does the job for a simple vacation

Cons – Definitely not for anyone who gets stressed by the sound of screaming children.

9. Valentin Imperial Mayan

A pricey 5 star option that’s 25 minutes away from 5th Ave.

Pros – Hmmm…hard to think of many given the price tag.

ConsAre you in Spain?

Or Asia?

Or Mexico?

No, you’re in a drab international resort that could be anywhere in the world.

The Last Word On Playa Del Carmen All Inclusive

If the all inclusive formula works for you, then great.

After three years here and speaking to lots of tourists you can see my recommendations for the best Playa Del Carmen all inclusive resorts.

If all inclusive doesn’t work for you, then I’ll join you for a tequila on 5th Ave!

In any case, I hope to see you here soon – wherever you stay!

Lots of love,


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It’s your turn. Do you have any comments, tips, or suggestions about all inclusive resorts here? Please leave them in the comments section below!

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