Written By: Geoff Millar, Owner – Ultimate All Inclusive Travel
In the next few months, we will be exploring the Playa Resort chain. This is an All-Inclusive chain made up of 5, different brands, Hyatt, Hilton, Jewel, Sanctuary, and Panama Jack. Playa includes Adult only Resorts, and Family Resorts. Playa Resorts are located in Mexico, Jamaica, and Dominican Republic. All the resorts are right on the ocean with nice beaches. The resorts are divided into 2 levels, 3 star and 4 stars. Each of the brands cater to a different clientele. It pays to understand each brand. We are going to look at each brand and provide information that will help you discover which resort is best for your clients.
This month, we are going to look at Playas entry level Resorts, Panama Jack. There are 2 of them and they are located in Mexico. One is in Cancun and the other is located in Playa del Carmen. These are family resorts with activities for every age. These resorts are rated 3 star resorts in my opinion.
The first resort we will look at is the Panama Jack Cancun. This resort used to be the Gran Caribe Resort & Spa. This is a very nice 3 star family resort on the main beach of Cancun close to the shopping and nightlife of Cancun. It sits next to the Hyatt Zilara. This resort used to be a strong timeshare resort. It has a main pool and a children’s pool with a water park and pirate ship. I do have to say that the main pool is very small. When I was there, I thought that the food was good.
Accommodations at the resort consist of all Jr Suits and Suites. They start with the Standard Jr. Suite with a garden view then move to the Jr Suite with a Lagoon View. Next is the Ocean View Jr. Suite. We then move to the Family Jr. Suite with a king bed, and bunk beds with trundle bed. The next room is the Oceanfront Jr. Suite, then the Premium Jr. Suite with Panama Club, the concierge level, The Beachfront Jr Suite Walkout with direct access to the beach, The beachfront Swim-Out Jr Suite, then we have the One Bedroom Master Suite Garden View, The Master One Bedroom with Ocean View, the One Bedroom Ocean Front Suite, and finally the 1,300 sq ft Ocean View Presidential Suite. The Jr. Suites are all the same size, the main difference is the view. All Accommodations come with free WIFI, up-scale amenities, and 24 Hr. Room Service.
Dinning offers 5 Ala Carte Restaurants, an International Buffet, a snack bar and a hot dog cart. The A La Carte restaurants offer, Mexican, Italian, Caribbean, European, and a Grill. As far as bars, there are, a Lobby Bar, a Beach Bar, and a Pool Bar. There is also 24 hr. room service.
Activities include a kid’s pool with pirate ship and a small water park. There is also the main Cancun beach, and the small main pool. There are daily activities such as tequila and wine tasting, volleyball, yoga, and aquaerobics. There is the turtle release program, august – November. There is the kid’s club for children 4 – 12 with both indoor and outdoor activities including mini-golf. There is a fantastic spa. The wedding dept offers a number of choices. Jet Skis and parasailing can be done from the beach at an additional cost.
This resort is great for families that want to experience a very nice all-inclusive vacation and are on a budget. The area is great for shopping and nightlife.
The next resort we will look at is the Panama Jack Play del Carmen. This used to be the old Gran Puerto Real Resort. It sits across the street from the Hyatt Zilara which used to be the old Royal Play del Carmen. This resort is in a great location, on a great beach and just a couple of blocks from 5th Ave in Playa del Carmen. It is on the North side of downtown. This is a very nice 3 star family resort with a lot of activities for all ages. It may have changed but the last time I was there the interior of the resort seemed a little dark to me. It does cater to a large local clientele.
Accommodations consist of Rooms, Jr Suites, and Suites. We start with a Standard Room with a street view. We then move to the Jr. Suite with a street view, next we have the Jr. Suite Ocean View, the Jr Suite Ocean Front, the Family Jr. Suite Ocean Front with king bed and bunkbeds, the Jr. Suite Walk-Out with direct access to the beach. We now move to the Suites starting with the 1,000 sq ft 1 Bedroom Master Suite Ocean Front, and finally the Master Bedroom Premium Master Suite Ocean Front that turns into a 2 bedroom Suite with the addition of an Ocean Front Jr. Suite. All accommodations come with free WIFI, up scale amenities, and 24 hr. room service.
Dining options include 3 A La Carte restaurants and 2 buffets, an International Buffet and a Brazilian Buffet. The A La Carte restaurants include Sushi, Mexican and Italian. As far as bars there are 4 choices, a lobby bar, a pool bar, a beach bar, and a coffee bar. There is also 24 hr. room service.
Activities abound at the resort with 2 pools, a large main pool and a roof top quiet pool. Activities at the pool contain games and sports as well as water aerobics. A great gentle swimmable beach with great lounging areas. You can kayak from the beach. Jet Ski and Parasailing can be done from the beach at an additional cost. There is a kid’s club for children 4 – 12 with indoor and outdoor activities including mini-golf. There is a fantastic Spa as well as great wedding dept. You are also steps from the famous 5th Ave for great shopping, nightlife and the best people watching. You can also walk down to the pier and catch the ferry to the island of Cozumel.
This is a great 3 star resort for people who want an active vacation and also be in the heart of Playa del Carmen. It is also very wallet friendly.
This is our look at Playa’s entry level resorts. Next week we will continue exploring Playa’s fantastic resort brands.
Until the stay safe and great selling.