The Fives Azul Beach Resort Playa Del Carmen is geared towards multigenerational guest experiences and the mix of ages actually added life to our stay. The layout of the property allows for seclusion for adults while welcoming kids, families and mixed groups of friends throughout. Their concept of using a lazy river to divide the hotel buildings that they term as villas is clever. These meandering bodies of water, give guests — young and old, a fun way to cool off, while separating buildings in an aesthetically pleasing way. The resort is large and wending your way through the villas s easy when you hop on and off of their continuous loop of golf cart shuttles. We did one better and booked a suite that came with a butler. This took our experience to an entirely different level. We exchanged cell phone numbers on day one and I can tell you that Jonathan made the most of that exchange. Early morning messages to ensure the day ahead was going to be smooth. Always letting us know that he was at our disposal for any needs, large or small. A trip to the beach on a dedicated golf cart was never too much. A jaunt to the herb garden for a few pictures? Jonathan was at our service. We lucked out with him because he was more than one of the staff butlers…he was the lead butler, in charge of all the butlers on property. We could not have asked for a more spectacular liaison between our desires and their fulfillment.
There was always something fun and exciting to try at the resort and Jonathan kept us abreast of all goings on. The tequila tasting was one of those activities that he was not going to let us miss. Good thing he came armed with the golf cart because after learning about the process of making tequilas, from reposado to silver and every one in between, we sipped each and every one, savoring their subtle differences. A lift to the restaurant was most definitely in order. The same way we learned how the agave was harvested and roasted, squeezed and then put through a double distillation process to reduce alcohol levels, is what we needed to do to our livers. Alcohol levels needed to be reduced, but no complaints, just smiles.
With every imaginable dining option, we couldn’t pass up the resort’s signature dish, available in a very limited quantity. The pulpo signature dish of the hotel is in high demand. Make a reservation at Mestisos and show up early as they only prepare 20, that’s right, 20 per night. Go at 6 pm and be prepared to have your taste buds fully satisfied early enough to go out and enjoy the evening. The strategic timing may seem a bit early, but trust us, it’s worth every morsel. The chef, Hugo, presented the pulpo dish to us. The smoke filled the room within my nasal cavity. This. Dish. Is. Everything. To think that I thought I had found paradise while eating lunch, earlier, surrounded by wild monkeys who craved attention and a bit of my meal, I was mistaken. This is the star of the resort’s culinary offerings. Don’t get me wrong, the monkey flipping chairs and climbing trees that jutted through the palapa hut was a highlight in a total different way. Stay a few days and catch it all. The gin bar is their signature bar, just off the lobby. Being family inclusive, kids are welcome in this lush purple infused space. After five in the evening, things switch to adults only and that’s when things get stirred or shaken up a notch. We like so much about this resort and think you should try it. We thoroughly enjoyed our one bedroom penthouse and took full advantage of the views from our rooftop jacuzzi. It is what we now term the añejo, which we earned in our tequila tasting class is the next level of tequila. Let us know what you think when you visit. You may very well get Jonathan and refer to it as extra añejo.