Alux Cave Restaurant in Playa del Carmen

by Gina on August 12, 2012 · 10 comments

One Day, I Went to this Restaurant in Mexico: Alux Cave Restaurant

Alux Cave Restaurant: Eating in a cave in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Alux Cave Restaurant: Eating in a cave in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

I heard of Alux Cave Restaurant while sitting in the bar at our resort on the Mexican Riviera. I was sipping on my cucumber Bellini when I overheard our bartender telling the couple sitting at the bar next to Tom and me what restaurant they had to visit when they went to Playa del Carmen later that week. Tom and I were heading to Playa del Carmen for the evening in a couple days so I inserted myself into the conversation. A recommendation from a local? Perfect.

The restaurant, which the bartender wrote down on a paper coaster, was called Alux. This was no normal restaurant, the bartender told us as he mixed together a drink. Alux Restaurant was located in a real underground cave.

A cave restaurant in Playa del Carmen? How could we not check it out?

Alux Cave Restaurant: You're telling us we can eat in this type of environment? Yes, please!

You’re telling us we can eat in this type of environment? Yes, please!

Upon arriving in Playa del Carmen a couple days later after taking the shuttle service from our resort to the city and exploring the gorgeous Mexico shoreline that Playa del Carmen was on, we popped into a hotel next to the beach to ask where Alux Cave Restaurant was located.

“Ah, Alux. Very good, very good,” the concierge said as he pointed it out to us on the map. Tom and I grinned at each other, glad that another local was being a big proponent of Alux Restaurant. He said it was about a 30 minute walk so we decided to hop into a cab.

The cab drove through some industrial looking roads and stopped in front of an unimpressive looking building. It had a pretty sign proclaiming that yes, this was indeed Alux, but it certainly didn’t look like a cave. We were several blocks from the beach and in the middle of a busy city. We stared at the entrance in surprise for a few seconds.

“Alux,” the driver reiterated.

“Thanks,” we said in unison and crawled out of the cab after deciding on a time for the cab to pick us back up.

We walked through the doors of Alux Cave Restaurant into a garden oasis. Green shrubs and colorful flowers filled the patio and framed the host who met us with a large smile. After letting him know we were there for dinner, he gestured us toward an opening in a rock wall to our right, beyond which a staircase descended down into the ground.

The patio of Alux - the non-cave part of the restaurant.

The patio of Alux – the non-cave part of the restaurant.

Alux Restaurant: The staircase leading down into the cave.

The staircase leading down into the cave.

“This is so cool,” Tom said in awe as we walked down.

We reached the bottom and…we were in a bona-fide cave. The host led us past a long bar and to our table, which was located next to the wall of the cave.

Alux Cave Restaurant: The Main Dining Room

Part of the main dining room of Alux Cave Restaurant.

We were sitting quite close to this little cenote throughout dinner at Alux Restaurant.

We were sitting quite close to this little cenote throughout dinner.

Eating in the cave at Alux was super fun. It was like we were luxury explorers. The food was also delicious.

The soup at Alux restaurant was amazing. This one came with tortillas, salsa, and limes in the bowl. Then the server poured the broth over it at the table. It was delicious! (And was not blurry in real life.)

The soup at Alux Restaurant was amazing. This one came with tortillas, salsa, and limes in the bowl. Then the server poured the broth over it at the table. It was delicious! (And was not blurry in real life.)

Alux Restaurant had very inventive dishes. I had a chicken dish with goat cheese and spices. Also tried a few bites of Tom's dish - a beef and shrimp dish with some sweet and savory sauces. Both were cooked well and very tasty.

Alux Restaurant had very inventive dishes. I had a chicken dish with goat cheese and spices. Also tried a few bites of Tom’s dish – a beef and shrimp dish with some sweet and savory sauces. Both were cooked well and very tasty.

Super full after our dinner. Can't eat another bite!

Super full after our dinner. Can’t eat another bite!

In addition to a great food menu, Alux Cave Restaurant also had an impressive wine list. We had a really great bottle of Tempranillo. After eating, we were given a tour through the cave by one of the servers.

Getting a tour of Alux. The cave is massive and has several more rooms than just the main dining room.

Getting a tour of Alux. The cave is massive and has several more rooms than just the main dining room.

Alux Cave Restaurant: A plant growing in the middle of the cave. Our guide said no one at the restaurant can figure out how it's growing with no sunlight.

A plant growing in the middle of the cave. Our guide said no one at the restaurant can figure out how it’s growing with no sunlight.

In addition to offering dining as well as drinks in a separate lounge area of the cave, portions of Alux Restaurant can be rented for weddings and receptions, too. Good thing I didn’t know about that before our wedding earlier this summer. I may have said adios to the beach and gone in a completely different direction for it.

One of the rooms in Alux you can rent for parties and receptions.

One of the rooms in Alux Cave Restaurant that you can rent for parties and receptions.

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Arianwen August 13, 2012 at 2:58 pm

This looks amazing. I love restaurants that are a bit alternative. This is why it’s a good idea to get recommendations of fellow travellers :)
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Gina August 15, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Definitely! That’s also often why I don’t like having too many things planned before getting somewhere. You meet people who can have great input and completely change your plans!

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Ayngelina August 15, 2012 at 11:48 am

I love Playa del Carmen but I didn’t know about this place, it’s definitely on my list for next time.
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Gina August 16, 2012 at 1:10 pm

Hi Ayngelina! Definitely visit. It’s such a cool place. :)

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Carlene forsythe February 11, 2013 at 10:43 pm

I’ve been to playa four times and this was the first I heard of alux. You would never know there anything like it there. Food was good not great but the presentation and atmosphere spectacular?

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Gina February 13, 2013 at 10:19 pm

Hi Carlene! Yes, the atmosphere was incredible – one of the coolest and unique I’ve ever eaten in. I really enjoyed the food. I’m sure you can find better elsewhere in Playa, but it definitely satisfies.

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Vickie June 20, 2013 at 7:57 am

Yes Yes Gina!! You are right on the money on this one. My daughter (a geologist) and I visited The Alux while we were vacations in the area back in October…Wonderful Wonderful Eatery!!

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suzanne July 16, 2013 at 11:39 am

Where did you stay while in playa del carmen..i have heard about alux and want to go – but also need a resort close by :)

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Gina August 27, 2013 at 12:37 pm

Hi Suzanne, I was actually at the El Dorado Royal Casitas resort, which is on the Riviera Maya, but not actually in Playa del Carmel. The resort offered free shuttle service to Playa del Carmen a few times a week, which worked out nicely!

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Gina August 27, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Glad to hear you enjoyed it, too! I hope to go back someday.

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