“ Address: Touristic and Ecological Zone of "La Cañada", Cañada St. 6, Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico / Tel: +52 (916) 345 0201 / Fax:+52 (916) 345 1004. „
Hotel Maya Tulipanes
Canada St 6
Centro Zone Eco-Turistico La Canada
Tel: 52 (916) 345-0201
Fax: 52 (916) 345-1004
The town of Palenque has grown in response to the tourist demand to visit the fabulous Mayan archeological ruins set amongst the jungle nearby. It is not an attractive town, with no great historical or architectural significance of its own other than its proximity to the archeological site. Shuttle buses run back and forth between the town and the site regularly for $10 (50p) and the journey takes about seven minutes. The town is also a handy base for exploring a number of picturesque waterfalls and the smaller Mayan sites of Bonampak and Yaxchillan (although these would be longer drives). Tours can be booked in the town, at the hotel or private transport can be hired. On the edge of town the La Canada ecological and tourist zone has been developed in the last few years with a number of hotels and restaurants. There are also some in the main town which is about 500m away. It is a five minute taxi ride to the bus station and a little further to the small local airport.
Hotel Maya Tulipanes is a modern hotel with a mock-colonial and mock-Mayan hybrid style which looks better than it sounds. The hotel is laid out as if it is three sides of a courtyard, with a pool on the fourth side. We were welcomed with a complementary tequila sunrise (how very civilised!) served in a plastic cup (hmmm) under the thatched hut within the courtyard. The weather was atrocious and the staff were constantly mopping up the floor where the rain had come in through the covered (but open-sided) part of the hotel. It also meant the pool was full of leaves and although they cleaned it up as soon as the rain finished there wasnt time to have a dip. Although it claims to have been open since 1972, it has obviously been extensively renovated.
Rooms had a stone/fake marble finish with a dressing table and hanging space (no doors) complemented with two wrought iron double beds, tables and large mirror. There is also a flat screen colour TV. The bathroom had a separate shower, toilet and sink with plenty of space for your stuff, a small hairdryer as well as a number of complimentary toiletries. They also provided two 500ml bottles of drinking water in the room everyday which I though was a nice touch. The air con was noisy so at night we used the fan. The shower was efficient but you did have to be patient waiting for the hot water to come through.
As well as a pool area with sun lounges the hotel offers a laundry service, on site parking and about four internet terminals. The internet cost $15 (70p) for about 45 minutes; you can get better rates in town if you can be bothered. It is not the fastest connection you will ever use but adequate for checking e-mails. They also advertise free wireless internet access in the rooms. The hotel also claims to have conference facilities but I cannot comment on those.
There is a restaurant on site that also provided room service. I only used it for breakfast, which began at about $42 (£2) for a Continental although they also do an American breakfast (like the traditional Full English) and a range of omelettes. The reception and hotel staff are obliging but not always fluent English speakers. Reception desk is manned 24 hours.
I enjoyed my stay but for a few little niggles. The TV has an alarm facility that came on at 5am for no reason. There was no remote in the room so I could not work out how to unset it, thus that was dealt with my pulling the plug from the wall, however reception were not bothered when I mentioned it to them. Whoever next plugged that TV in was also going to get an early (and loud) wake up call. The other niggle was the nearby cockerels who dont believe in crowing just at dawn. Crowing at 2am suited them about fine. Usually accompanied by owls and dogs. My room was at the end of the row, by the pool but people nearer reception were not bothered by it, so that is a consideration if ever you are staying here.
My stay was included in my holiday price but advertised room rates are US$80-90, per room per night (no single supplement) depending on the time of year. Special deals are done for groups and I am sure there are web deals available, the best I have found is US$62. The hotel has an official rating of four stars. It is good by local standards, but dont expect the same as Western European or US four star, this would probably be considered a three star.
The Hotel Maya Tulipanes is a 4 star hotel with 72 rooms, 1 restaurant and bar, and 3 meeting rooms for up to 320 persons. It is located in the ecological and touristic area of La Cañada, 100m from the highway, and the famous Mayan Head sculpture of Palenque. Downtown Palenque is a short 500m away.