More about Valentin Imperial Maya
Valentin Imperial Maya - Fabulous!!!
When we arrived at the Valentin Imperial Maya we were greeted with hot towels and cold champagne. This was certainly welcomed after our long, 4 plus hour drive, from Chetumal were we had been visiting.
We arrived about 2 in the afternoon, on a Thursday. Walking into the hotel lobby, you can't help but notice the beautiful lighting fixtures (Later in our stay, we had the pleasure to meet the gentleman who created these works of art - He was at the resort to take pictures for his portfolio) and elegant furniture. The fabrics they selected are quite beautiful and hopefully durable! The gardens and fountains are beautiful as well. There are lots of mature trees on the property and while we were there, they were planting additional flowers and plants. There is plenty of wildlife, mostly iguanas and birds, in the area, for the nature lovers.
The check in process was quick and efficient and we were in our room, courtesy of a golf cart ride, within a half hour. We unpacked, showered and had a quick dip in the pool, just outside our building, before dinner. Refreshed, we made the short walk to the seafood restaurant for a wonderful dinner of grilled lobster and wine! We arrived around 6:30 and did not have to wait for a table. This restaurant is very popular, so if you don't want to wait, arrive for an early or late dinner. If arriving between 7 and 9, you may have to wait a bit for a table.
The restaurants are all very good, if you appreciate good food. The Valentin uses high quality food and they understand that presentation is a key part of the dining experience. My husband and I also very much enjoyed the house wines that are included in the all-inclusive price and shown on back page of the wine list. If you like, you can purchase other wines from the list, ranging from about $30 to $300. The wait staff is very informed and can help you with your selection Our favorite dinners were the lobster from the Lobster Pot and the Chateaubriand from the French Restaurant. At lunch they have a nice Cerviche appetizer at the La Mar & Tierra Restaurant and great choices at the Le Marche. The Seafood Soup - (can't remember what they called it) in red broth at Le Marche is to die for!!
Swimming, for me, was great! The pools are not heated and may be a little cool, especially in the mornings before the sun has a chance to heat the water. That is perfect for swimming, in my opinion. The main pool has swim up bars and jacuzzi areas. They bring trays of snacks to the pool near the rooms around 12:30. They may to the larger pool as well, but I never was there at this time. Beverage service is available on the beach and at the pools. The water at the beach in front of the resort is too rocky to swim in - but there is a swimming area available. To access the beach swimming area, go just past the Mar & Tierra Restaurant and turn left for about 100 meters. Be advised that the surf in the sea is a bit rough.
Drinks are good and service is efficient. I loved the Margaritas!!
***Please don't forget to tip your wait staff and others who go out of their way for you - at this resort or any others you may visit. You may be told that gratuities are included but... minimum wage in Mexico is about $5 to $6 a DAY and that is all they get without additional tips! We tipped about $2 for breakfast and lunch, $5 for dinner and $1 a drink. $5 to the bellboys and $5 to each hostess(for the entire stay). Believe me, I come from a service background and it's hard work, any tip is always appreciated.***
We had a great time at this resort and I hope you will too!! We had initially booked for a week, with plans to go elsewhere after, but liked it so well, we extended our stay by three days.
Best Food & Best Service Resort in the Mayan Riviera
Review From Richard- Travel Agent from Online Travel Centre
I,m doing this review from the lobby of the Valentin Imperial Maya. First let me start by saying that this resort is absolutely gorgeous. The service offered by this resort is one of the best I have ever experienced from any all inclusive in Mexico, and the food is excellent. You have the choice of Lobster, French, Italian,Mexican, Seafood, Steakhouse,Japanese and buffet, no reservations required and you can go to any of them as much as you like. You also have the choice of using there 24 hour room service for Breakfast, Lunch,Dinner and late snacks!!, you can,t find this luxury from to many resorts, and best of all its all included!!
The pool is hugh!!, with 2 swim-up bars and built in jacuzzi and waterfalls to add to the ambiance. There are plenty of pool chairs located in the pool or in the shaded areas all around the pool deck.
The rooms are hugh with a balcony, jacuzzi tub seperate shower stall. You also have a mini bar and electronic safe large enough to fit your laptop computer.
The beach is very nice and you can walk almost a mile in either direction on a nice white sand beach, the nice thing about this beach area its not crowded and some really nice expensive beach homes are built next door.
Well I'm off to Playa del Carmen today that is only 15 minutes away and then on to a ferry to Cozumel for the day.
Go before the prices double and they will.
Romantic and beautiful! Loved it!!!!!!
Mexico was awesome! We stayed at the Valentin Imperial Maya, a brand new resort just outside of Puerto Morelos, it isn't really in Playa del Carmen, it's about 20 minutes or so away located on "the secret beach". When we got there it was so awesome! They whisk you away with champagne and bring you to the check in area. There they have a server come over to get you more drinks right away. We had wonderful margaritas. We got there really early, so our room was not ready until 3pm, standard check in time. While we waited we had some lunch at the beachfront restaurant, with some mojitos. Yum! We checked out the beach and the pool as well. I do want to say about the beach is that the area directly in front of the hotel has some rocks, but right to the left it's fantastic! We wanted to use the jet skis and do para sailing while we were there, but the water was too rough so we had to cancel our plans. We asked the activities person by the pool, who we scheduled our trip with, he said that the water between November and March is the roughest, that it wouldn't matter which hotel in that area we were at, the water would be choppy. Please do not blame the hotel for nature. When we got to our room it was beautiful, about the size of my entire apartment. We got upgraded to the golden suite, so we had a jacuzzi with a view of the ocean. Can't complain there. We had 2 balconies, love it! Our bed was super comfortable! A huge king size. We got turn down service every night. If you are unsure about which restaurants will be open the next night they deliver the "Valentin Journal" every night. It tells you what activities are scheduled (like guacamole class, now I know how to make incredible guacamole! Or tequila tasting, Spanish class, poker, water aerobics, water polo, beach volleyball). It also tells you which restaurants are open that night. I'm sorry if some people were upset that not every restaurant was open every night, but it's not the high season, so if they were to have every one open every night there would be a lot of food waste. I guess anyone who could possibly be upset has never worked in the food industry. It's so new, there just were not enough people at the hotel to have everything open every night, during the busy seasons I'm sure that will not be the case. It was awesome because for dinner we never had to make a reservation. You can come and go in any restaurant whenever you please. We liked all the restaurants, but the Mexican restaurant was our favorite. We shared a bottle of Mexican white wine and I had the most amazing tortilla soup. I'm salivating. One night they had a Caribbean buffet by the pool and a Caribbean band with Brazilian Carnival style dancers and a band. My boyfriend ate seafood until he couldn't eat anymore, huge prawns and lobster in champagne sauce. Needless to say he was in heaven! Internet is free in the lobby. That was nice. Make sure to say hello to Alejandro, he goes from activity to activity every day, and I loved Dulce in the lobby, she was able to find out for me what bars in Playa and Cancun were open due to the Presidential elections. Very helpful, we didn't end up going because we decided we were too tired, but had we gone to Cancun, Dulce tells us that she and her friends like a nightclub called "Pure", and I know from personal experience that if you want to go to a nightclub in Playa you should check out the Blue Parrot. We also took a tour to Isla Mujeres where we went shopping and had a great lunch ($2 tacos) and the best mojitos either of us has ever had, we went zip lining, he did snorkeling, I couldn't handle it because the water was way too choppy. We swam with the dolphins too. That was great!!! All in all, we had a fantastic time and can't wait to go back. I would 100% highly recommend the adults only Valentin Imperial Maya, hurry and go before it gets expensive. It's always a great idea to check out awesome hotels while they are new so you get to see it all before the prices skyrocket. I should add that it is a large hotel, but unless your at least a little lazy the golf carts are not really necessary. I never felt the need. The hotel currently has about 350 rooms completed, go to a hotel with 2000 plus rooms, then you might need a golf cart, but this was not that large. I would like to see them put room numbers on the "towers" though as many of them look the same from the outside. I know several people who got lost trying to figure out which one was theirs as each tower has the same room numbers. Well, hope you all enjoyed the cold. I'm sad to be back, but always looking forward to leaving again :)
Relaxing in Paradise!
My fiance and I just got back from the Valentin Imperial Maya, and I have to say, this is the most amazing resort I have ever stayed at!
We stayed from January 26th - February 2nd, and at first we were reluctant because the resort is so new, but let me tell you, have no worries about this place!
The resort is almost 100% done. 7 out of the 8 restaurants were operating, the spa was working but from a different location, and they were adding more palapas on their massive beach and just doing some final landscaping. Don't let any any of this worry you, because none of this is an inconvenience and honestly this place is so good and runs so smoothly that you would think this is how it is supposed to be!
So, restaurants - all I can say is amazing. A reason all on their own to come to this place. Food is outstanding, presentation and service are all top notch. We were talking with other people that we met there, and when we were trying to figure out what our favorite restaurant was, everyone ended up have 3!!
The Beach - fantastic. Soft white sand, and huge! My only complaint about this entire resort is that when you walk into the ocean directly in front of the resort, is that there is some coral and little rocks. But, if you move past the volleyball court to the left, its all sand! And the beach bar is great! You just sit down in your chair, and a waitress comes right away to get you a drink!
The Pool - outstanding! I am a beach person and spent most of my time there, but this pool was crazy!
Night life - No discos or anything like that, but they do have some shows. I have to say their Michael Jackson Show was awesome and so was their circus show. This resort is not a party place, so if you are expecting that you will be disappointed. This is an elegant place to relax, and because its adults only, it has a much more sophisticated feel to it.
Staff - There are so many! And they are all exceptional! They are always willing to please and will do everything they can to make sure you are having a perfect vacation!
Rooms - We stayed in villa 5, and I think this is the best one to be in. Close to the pool and beach, and also to the lunch and steak restaurant. We had a deluxe junior suite, and it was awesome! It is their basic room, and its huge! 2 balconies, t.v., couch, jacuzzi tub, enclosed toilet and shower. And the bed is so comfortable! I have a bad back, but this mattress was amazing!
Excursions - Scuba diving is a must! I went to Cozumel, and it is absolutely breathtaking! You will see so much marine life! I did the diving through the dive center at the resort and it was perfect.
We also went to Chichen Itza, and if you have any interest in mayan history or just ancient history in general, this is the place to go! We booked this through the hotel, and the tour was great! Our guide was full of knowledge and just a pleasure to listen to. It was well organized and totally worth it!
So just to sum it all up, go while the price is still low, because this place is going to be one of the best places in the Rivera to go to and the price will jump up soon. If you want to totally relax, and to be spoiled with amazing gourmet food and service, then this is the place to go to! I can't wait to go back!
10 Reasons not to book the Valentin.
#1. If you dont enjoy being greeted at the receiption area with a champagne cocktail and heated/moist cloth....then don't go.
#2 If your expecting to have a difficult check in/out experience that lasts longer than 5 minutes .....then dont go.
#3 If your expecting an a sub-standard room with only minimal comfort then again please ......do not book this hotel !
#4 If are accustomed to rude, indifferent hotel staff & servers ....then stay away from this hotel !
#5. Should you not deisre to frolick in the warm carribean seas where all the stress of your working/personal life seems to somehow dissapear with each gently wave as do your footprints into the soft white sand .....again I must tell you .....please do not book this hotel !
#6 When relaxing on a beach if you prefer not to be continually offered cool refreshing beverages and truly delicious food delivered to your lounge chair without having to move so much as your baby toe .....then ....I encourage you to resist booking this hotel.
#7 If being consistenly greeted by the staff with a welcoming smile that appears as 100% genuine as is their desire to make you compltely satisfied .... then .....don't book the Valentin.
#8 If your palate has become accustomed to fast food, boring food, food without flavour or generally your culinary senses are not accoustomed to delight at every meal ...please ....please stay away.
If your preference is snow shovelling rather than floating amid waterfalls... hastle free as the music of the carribean permiates the air ....while you are gentley caresed by a soft Mexican breeze then it is very crucial you understand .......go somewhere else !
The last and most important reason you should not book this hotel is because you owe it to yourself to spend another week at work, with your boss, your co-workers . After all isn't that what life's all about ? Your bank account ? The corporate ladder ? maybe a new kitchen !?! The kids, the wife?husband I'll get to spend some quality time with them later this year....hopefully.
Perhaps you are saying "I just can't afford to leave right now, maybe next year" Your absolutely correct. It makes perfect sense not to go.Why would you want to hit the "reset" button on your stress level at argueable one of the finest hotels in all of Mexico.
Personally I hope you don't go, after all that means we will might have a chance of returning next year before the prices skyrocket ..oh...and they will.
If all the people who were planning a vacation read this review and decide not to go .....then maybe...just maybe... it will still be affordable.
I beg you ....do not stay at this Hotel ....it's not fair to those of us who want to return next year !
Wish we were still there!!!
For those of you going to the Valentin, you are in for an awesome vacation, for those of you planning a trip - this is the place to be!
The resort: Although still a work in progress, the spa and disco are not done - not a big deal, there is still more than enough to do and more than enough places to drink :) Impressive, and staff who are excellent. Remember, you are on vacation - this is not a business trip and things do not happen at the minute of your wish; however they will happen! In other words, when you ask for something; it will come to you, be patient, they are still working out a few minor "kinks" nothing bad at all, seriously, we have stayed at Secrets Capri, and the El Dorado Royal in this area, and this is by far my new favorite!!!
Pools, huge!!! Could have been a tad warmer, however I managed :)
Food, INCREDIBLE, even the room service (which is 24 hours by the way) was great!! YUM!!
Can't say enough how much the staff was willing to please, and how they made us feel like "family" - we haven't had this vibe since we stayed at Couples Swept Away in Jamaica!
Our room = WOW, we stayed in building 7 and our room number was 7104. We had a swim up suite, 2 flat screen TVs, a giant bathroom with a double vanity, a bathtub that was out of this world! Large shower with tons of hot water and great pressure!
The beach - Oh my God, Amazing!!! The most beautiful beach I have seen in this area!! Awesome for shells, the sunrise, a great tan, you name it - it was rough for swimming during our stay, but that didn't stop many from enjoying all the waves had to offer!
This is a large resort with so much to offer, take advantage of their rates now, before it's too late!!
We took a day trip on the ferry (out of Playa) to Cozumel to scuba dive. ANOTHER AWESOME DAY OF DIVING!! We went with Scuba Cancun for the tour and did a 2T dive off the walls and reefs of Cozumel. Go to Viva Mexico (facing the beach, on the second floor, near the cruise ships) and ask for Willie or Rambo. Tell them Elvis' brother from the Cruise ship sent you :) We also dove with Diversity Diving off the shore of Playa, and although the dive was great; the water on this side is really rough, I have never been so sick in my life. If you have a strong stomach and do not get sick, then Tortugas Reef is great diving, Turtles everywhere!!
I promise to get pictures up soon, however wanted to get my review up asap. If you have questions, or are looking for more info, please do not hesitate to give me a shout!
Not only would I send my friends, I would go back to the Valentin - again and again!!
5-Star but still room for improvement
We stayed at the Valentin from January 26 to February 2 and would have no problem in recommending this resort even though it only opened two months ago. As with every resort there are some things that you will love and others that could be improved upon. While we were there the resort was at less than 30 percent occupancy and with the expansive grounds we sometimes had the feeling that we had it to ourselves which was romantic and disconcerting at the same time.
I will agree with all of the other reviews that the Valentin excels when it comes to service. I don’t think that I have ever stayed at a hotel that has provided better or friendlier service. It was quite refreshing to have this level of service without noticing any staff member expectant of a generous tip, though they are appreciative when receiving one. I have also never experienced a faster or more pleasant hotel check-in process; my wife and I were getting settled into our room less than half an hour after arriving at the resort. I will be interested to find out whether this same level of service will be provided when approaching full occupancy.
There are two large salt-water pools at the resort that are both very attractive and well designed as well a smaller activity pool near the main pool.
The main pool has two bars each with swim-up and deck-side sections, a fountain, an island and two built in Jacuzzis areas. The only improvement that could have been made would have been to heat the water going into those Jacuzzis especially during the winter months, which would have been heaven. There were plenty of lounges around this pool, some in the water, some in the sun while others provided partial or full shade as desired. We never had a problem finding the desired type of lounge setting and lounges should never be a problem even when filled to capacity.
The swim-up pool is a part of the Golden section and some refer to it as the lap-pool, they must be marathon swimmers. In front of each of the three Golden buildings there are small islands built into the pool, each with its own smaller plunge pool. Between each of the Golden buildings there is a pool bar and a bridge over the pool to the lagoon area. There are palappas on each of the islands and by each of the bridges with lounge chairs under the palappas and others in the water. We found this to be very nice as people would gather on the islands allowing you to meet other Golden guests. We would have preferred if the plunge pools were hot tubs or at least heated, especially in the evenings.
We were in a Golden Suite of building 8 and it was absolutely gorgeous. The bathroom was spacious and well appointed and included a large two-person Jacuzzi with partial skylight and French-doors that opened up to the bedroom portion of the suite. The king-sized bed was very comfortable and from it you could watch the large flat-screen TV on the opposite wall. There was a separate sitting area with a table for two, a couch and a second TV complete with DVD. There was a large covered balcony with looked out over the swim-up pool and lagoon which had a nice table and chairs. This was the first time that we had been in a suite so nice that you would actually look forward to being in it.
During our stay we were able to look at the other room types. The Deluxe Suite is somewhat smaller than the Golden but still very nice, however the Jacuzzi is not as large and does not open up to the bedroom. The Oceanfront Suite is also a bit smaller than the Golden but bigger than the Deluxe, however the shower includes a rain-shower head and there is a built-in plunge pool instead of a Jacuzzi; one-way windows surround the plunge pool. We only saw a One-Bedroom Diamond Suite that was not yet complete but it is absolutely huge with two bathrooms and two Jacuzzis; one in the ensuite bathroom and the second on one of the balconies.
The restaurants, bars and other facilities were all very well appointed. The buffet is open for breakfast, lunch and late-night snacks but not for dinner. The beach restaurant was also open for late breakfast and lunch. Each of the seven a-la-carte restaurants were open for six nights of the week, with the seafood having a lobster menu about half of the nights. A couple of the nights the resort arranged for theme buffet dinners that were set-up in areas outside of those restaurants. In general the food was of better quality than normally associated with an all-inclusive however I would not go as far as to say that it was comparable to high-end establishments found in major North American cities. Hopefully over time the Valentin will make some adjustments to each of the menus to better appeal to all tastes, for example add more pasta to the Italian and offer a couple of land-lover selections into the seafood menu. The other improvement would be to offer some variety during the week to the breakfast and lunch menus.
During our stay the two beach bars were not yet in operation, but toward the end of the week it appeared that work was being done to complete them. However we were not inconvenienced by this because they had staff bringing snacks and taking drink orders while we lounged on the beach. Also because the resort not being at full occupancy only one of the two bars were open at both the main and swim-up pools, though it did appear on our last day that the second bar was open at the main pool. Again this did not really affect us as they had staff bringing snacks and taking drink orders while we lounged around the pools. It appeared that the beach and pool bars will provide made to order snacks as well as drinks once that are fully operational.
All of the other bars and the theatre appear to be complete and operational, though I did not see the disco. The liquor was all top-shelve and almost all of the cocktails were very tasty, except when we asked for a Ceasar which is always a problem outside of Canada. Every day the resort featured a different cocktail in the Valentin Journal which was a nice touch to provide variety without me having to think about it.
The animation team was friendly and tried hard to provide different activities during the week without being pushy about it. The nightly entertainment that was provided was better than a lot of other resorts that we have been to, especially the Circus and Michael Jackson nights. However the entertainment was at different times, sometimes too early, maybe because they have to fit in with the schedule of other resorts that use these same professional groups. If you miss the show it can be an early night without benefit of a disco unless you close down one of the bars.
The grounds of this resort are very expansive and appear to be cut out of the jungle. There are many walkways that lead though the gardens which are already pretty but are continually being worked on and should be gorgeous in time. The walkways are lit and speakers provide music or ambient sounds, but a lacking any benches. The lagoon is the one area where the lack of landscaping is most noticeable, but it was interesting to watch the occasional waterfowl that made use of it. With the work that they are doing and as the vegetation matures this could become one of the most eye-appealing resorts before the end of this season.
One final note, I have to thank Sonia, the Valentin representative in Canada for providing quality service prior to our departure and Omar our concierge for being so helpful and friendly during our stay.
Great resort but still need to work out a few things....
Just returned from a week at the Valentin Feb 2 - 9. Overall, I would say the resort is very good.
Here is my summary...
Food - Excellent. I am a picky eater but always found something to eat. I personally found the buffet a little small, but it served its purpose for the time I was there. If/when the hotel gets to capacity having one buffet might be a problem. There is also a la carte lunch available at the beach restaurant.
Service - Excellent. Best I have experienced.
Rooms - Nice,but here is where they have some issues to work out. As you have read from other reviews there are lots of glitches. Our week did not go without event. The main issue was when you emptied the whirlpool tub, it flooded the bathroom. Also, the tub was not clean when we got our room, bar fridge was not stocked, only one coffee cup all week, our room came with slippers and bath robes, these were never replaced by mid-week., no patio chairs...well, you get the picture.
We only called to complain about the bathtub, the other stuff was annoying but we really didn't want to waste the energy complaining.
Check-in - Uneventful, we arrived late evening.
Check-out - More of a problem. Our transfer to the airport did not leave until 5 p.m. They still have some issues to sort out with the courtesy rooms and/or late check-outs.
Pool - Lots of chairs and towels. The main pool is beautiful. There was also a smaller pool by our building which was quiet and a little warmer than the main pool.
My overall opinion is that the resort is going to be amazing. It appears they are trying to cater to an older more destinguished traveller. I would not recommend this resort to younger travellers, singles or for a girls getaway. If you a looking for a relaxing holiday, this is the place.
Here's the real truth
I would never tell anyone not to go to this resort.. it was very beautiful, but very large. Be prepared for alot of walking, expecially if you book into a Golden room. You can call for a golf cart to take you to your destination, but you have to wait a while as there are only 4 carts. Now about the food..this is what I was not happy about. There are 8 ala carte restaurants, (which are not all open each night). The presentation was out of this world, but taste..that's another story. If you think the food there is good then I believe you havent visited high end restaurants at all. Oh, by the way, the Italian restaurant has no Italian food..seriously! The Japenese restaurant has no terriaki..And for lunch.. everyday was always the same menu. The resort (grounds and buildings) I would rate as a 5, the pool a 5, the beach a 3 (they are working on getting a snack bar there, and more palapas), the ocean is always very choppy in the Mayan, there are lots of rocks. The rooms a 5, but the most important is the food which I would give a 3..trust me! And overall for the atmosphere...it was very boring.
Still Needs Fine Tuning
I am a Travel Agency owner from NY.
I am writing this review from my hotel room, since I was lucky enough to find a concierge that gave me a cable. Suprisingly, he didn't know that my building had cable yet, and had offered it to me to use in the concierge office.
The resort is no doubt beautiful, but there are still alot of issues to work on here.
I don't know how anyone can complain about the food! I live in New York and dine at the best. So what if the menu is the same every night? You have 7 restaurants to choose from, each with a different venue.
My room is beautiful. Beachfront with a rather large jacuzzi that can hold 6 people comfortably. The grounds are big, but once you familiarize yourself with the layout, nothing is really that far.
The pool is beautiful, although the water is a little cold for me. Plenty of loungers and no shortage of towels.
No shortage of booze either. They certainly have enough bars and some top shelf liquor. The food service is excellent and the staff tries to be accommodating. There are many workers here that do not understand a word of English, though.
Now for the rest. I understand that the resort is new and there are still many things to be done.
We waited 4 hours for our room at check in,since they had a large group coming in and were overwhelmed.
When we did finally get to the room, the remotes had no batteries, our cable TV only had 4 channels, which was fixed a day or two later. My mini bar was not working properly and it took 5 days and 10 calls to get it changed.
One day we had called for wake-up at 5:45AM for a tour. They never called. They had the wrong room number. Upon returning to our room on 2 separate occassion, they were working on something behind our room with jackhammers.
They did stop when asked.
There are no signs at all on the grounds to let you know where you are or are going. No numbers on the buildings either.
All the buildings have the same room numbers, so it is not impossible to get lost, especially at night.
Once they work out the kinks, I am sure the resort will be fabulous. Right now, it is still very enjoyable, but it is the little things and finishing touches that do make a resort spectacular.