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La Tortuga, Playa del Carmen 

Avenida 10 between Calles 12 and 14
Playa del Carmen
Tel: 52 984 873 1484
view web site ›'s insider take:

Front desk clerks greet new guests as if they'd just arrived home at this 51-room charmer just a block from Playa's busy Fifth Avenue. Affable porters, housekeepers, and bartenders attend to individual quirks, quickly offering fresh water, beach towels, and bug spray (pests emerge around the gardens at sundown). Slip straight into the courtyard swimming pool from terraces outside ground-floor rooms, or survey the town from a rooftop suite—even many of the basic accommodations have small balconies. The simple white rooms have TVs, coffeemakers, AC, and fans, though bathrooms are small, lack tubs, and have sinks designed for tall people. However, at little more than $100 a night, this hotel is a steal, especially considering the adjacent Itzá day spa—one of Playa's finest—and the margaritas in the communal lounge. Rates also include complimentary Wi-Fi in public spaces and passes to the wildly popular Mamitas beach club a few blocks north. The quiet back-street seclusion, friendly staff, and 16-and-over policy strike the ideal note of affable mellowness that appeals to couples and singles alike.

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