A clean, friendly and spacious hostel... pity about the karaoke bar next door. Maybe worth a second visit if they can get the volume turned down a little :)

Hostel Rio Playa, Playa Del Carmen, Mexico – Review

Note: all thoughts are my own and my accommodation reviews are not sponsored unless otherwise stated.

The Details
  • Where: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
  • How Long: 3 Nights
  • Number of persons: 1 Female
  • Cost: $15 US Dollars per night
  • Link: Couldn’t find their direct website but here is a Hostelworld link and a Facebook Page
Location

It is right in the heart of Playa Del  Carmen, just off the main strip. Close to some back streets for more “authentic” places to eat, and a 30 second walk to the beach. However there is another hostel in the area with a similar name – if you are booking a tour and need to be picked up make sure that the tour company knows which one you are staying at.

Accommodation/Rooms

Room Size: Large and brightly lit with natural light.

Comfort: The beds were huge, extremely comfortable and stable. The air conditioning ran during the evenings but was off during the day – so sleeping was easy. And if you needed a nap during the day there was an overhead fan

Cleanliness: Overall it was a very clean room, helped by the fact that the room had tiled floors. They were mopped and cleaned every day.

Noise: This is my one big negative on this place. Next door was a karaoke bar that would start up around 9pm and go until 3-4am. This was so loud that it felt as though there was someone standing at the foot of my bed singing old Brittney Spears songs. It was impossible to block out even with head phones. As much as I loved this hostel the noise factor is the reason why I didn’t return to this hostel on my second visit to Playa

Security: There is a reception at the entrance to the building who checks everyone who comes in. The rooms all have locks on them though sometimes the other guests forget to lock them. In the rooms there are lockers if you have a padlock. I felt very secure as this hostel was small and friendly and there always seemed to be staff around who recognised the guests.

A clean, friendly and spacious hostel... pity about the karaoke bar next door. Maybe worth a second visit if they can get the volume turned down a little :)

Bathrooms

Size/amount: Near every dorm room there appeared to be a bathroom. At first I thought that this wouldn’t be enough, but I never had to wait for the bathroom so it seemed to work well. The bathrooms were large with both the toilet and shower in the same room.

Water pressure/temperature: The showers were warm, not the hottest I have had but it was so humid that it didn’t matter. There was constant pressure as well so that was a huge plus for me with my overly thick hair.

Useability: There could have been more hooks to hang things while showering – but I always think this and have yet to find a hostel bathroom with the right amount and configuration of hooks.

Cleanliness: Very clean, and smelt of cleaning fluids – which is nice when you are in a hostel, beats the smell of mold!

A clean, friendly and spacious hostel... pity about the karaoke bar next door. Maybe worth a second visit if they can get the volume turned down a little :)

Kitchen

Equipment:  A well-stocked kitchen with a microwave and all of the essentials. They also serve breakfast in the kitchen everyday which is a nice collection of fruit and local cakes. There is a large fridge which appears to be routinely cleaned out as it was the cleanest hostel fridge I have ever seen!

Size: Small – more than two people cooking would be uncomfortable.

Cleanliness: Very clean, as I mentioned the fridge was practically empty, the surfaces were all spotless. This hostel really got the right fittings for the whole place as all of the surfaces were easy to wipe down and maintain.

Staff

The staff were friendly and helpful. One morning when the tour I had organised through one of the street vendors didn’t turn up to pick me up, the staff helped me call them and negotiate a solution. They always said hello as you came in and out and would help if you asked for it.

A clean, friendly and spacious hostel... pity about the karaoke bar next door. Maybe worth a second visit if they can get the volume turned down a little :)

Facilities

Internet: In my room I had no problems with the internet, it was strong and fast and free! Not sure what it was like for others but I didn’t hear of anyone complaining.

Tour Desk: You could easily book tours through the hostel, however I found that you could get a cheaper price if you negotiated on the strip. In saying that, my tour didn’t show up to pick me up so I felt as though I should have just booked through the hostel to ensure that everything went as planned. Sometimes it’s not worth scrimping on a couple of dollars if you end up wasting a day trying to get your money back.

Breakfast: A complete free breakfast served every morning for a few hours. It included fruit, toast and local cakes. Quite filling if not the healthiest.

Extra’s: There is a pool!! It’s not a deep pool but it’s a great way to cool down and a nice place to hang out and socialise. There is also a bar that opens in the peak times (it wasn’t open when I was there) in the off peak times you can use the amenities like the speakers and the bottle opener to have your own little hostel party.

Overall

This hostel was a breath of fresh air for me. From the moment I arrived and was greeted so warmly and shown to my large room with a comfortable bed that I fell in love a little. By hanging out at the bar (which was closed) I was able to connect and meet with some really great, laid back travellers who I hung out with for a few days. The only reason I won’t stay here again is that the karaoke bar next door was so loud that I couldn’t sleep through it – by the end of my stay I felt like had been tortured with sleep deprivation. Hopefully this is something they will negotiate with the bar owner in the future as it is a really amazing and very clean hostel.

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