We stayed at Playa Maria Beach Resort for one week and found it to be quite adequate for the price. The staff are friendly & helpful (a little Spanish helps), the restaurant serves pretty good food, and the pool and bar are right on the beach. Our room was spacious and clean, and the air conditioning was up to the task. It had a nice little balcony and a basic kitchen. Our only complaint about the place is that someone was always working the lobby, cruising for bodies to send to timeshare presentations; we were asked every single day, sometimes many times, so we had to get really good at saying no. We had made an agreement with someone at the airport to attend one of these presentations, in exchange for a number of decent percs. When we got to our hotel, a man grilled us on who we had talked to, what resort we were going to, what time, etc. Someone called us over an hour early the next morning, and we ended up being taken to a different resort, against our will, being totally ignored by the driver. We would've missed our presentation, which meant that we'd lose our deposit. We got pretty upset, made some very firm demands, and eventually were taken back to our hotel. The guy that arranged this little scam was there, so my husband made it clear that he'd better not do it again. It was fairly exciting there for awhile. Also, I had read a review of this place online which said that some Americans had around $5,000 worth of fraudulent charges put on their credit cards after they used them at the hotel desk and restaurant, so I refused to give them my card and gave them a cash deposit instead, which they agreed to without complaint. There's a huge new building going up directly next door (common in Mazatlan), and they started working at 7 A.M. every morning except Sunday -- it was a good alarm clock.
Unique Quality: Sitting in the pool every night, watching the gorgeous sunsets (waiting for the green flash) while enjoying a beverage ..... this was truly great. Other guests were pretty friendly and chatty, willing to share their experiences and offer travel advice. This isn't a huge place with all the bells and whistles -- no gift shop, beauty parlor, market, that type of thing -- but for what it is (nice, clean rooms, good housekeeping, fairly quiet) it's okay. It definitely has the feel of a quaint Mexican establishment, not a really touristy place.
Directions: Several miles north from The Golden Zone, up the main street along the beach, right on the city bus routes
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Address: Av Sabalo Cerritos No 1, Mazatlan, Pacific Coast, 82110, Mexico