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“Excellent Value!”

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Hotel Riu Emerald Bay
Ranked #11 of 78 Hotels in Mazatlan
Lincoln, Nebraska
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Excellent Value!”
Reviewed 5 May 2014

My cousin and I stayed at Hotel RIU for one week in late April. The staff was incredibly friendly and the resort was extremely clean. There were plenty of activities and entertainment within the resort. I would strongly recommend Hotel RIU.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Andrea C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Vancouver, BC
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 May 2014

We have stayed at this hotel from April 18-25, 2014 and overall really enjoyed the stay and would definitely consider coming back.

The "Pluses":
1. Service was exceptional - from the arrival and checking in, to restaurants (we never once had to wait for a waiter to get us drinks or change our plates), to room cleaning, etc. We befriended a waiter named Rafael in the main buffet who made sure we had absolutely the best experience every time we came by.
2. The amenities - Good variety of bars and pools and we never had to fight over a lounge chair.
3. Rooms - all the rooms face the ocean and have the best all-you-can-drink bar!
4. Location - perfect if you want to be a little more secluded from the main hotel strip - Riu is last on the "block" and the you could walk on the beach for hours
5. Entertainment - excellent shows and animator team. activities were well organized.

The "Minuses":
1. No fans in the room's bathrooms - make sure you bring an air freshener or a poo-pourri.
2. The elevators could get very busy and humid/hot - especially around meal times and around show times at night. We had to take stairs on more than one occasion - so see if you could a room on a lower level.
3. The a-la-carte dinners were a little strange because both Bamboo and Italian restaurants were no different from regular buffets. We were specifically disappointed in Bamboo because the service and food quality there were worse than in main dining. The simple truth is - don't bother expecting a decent Asian meal in Mexico. The Mexican a-la-carte restaurant was the best of the three but overall, we still preferred the variety of the main buffet.
4. Bring your own shampoo/conditioner - they only provided us with a soap and body wash
5. Internet in the lobby doesnt work very well and while they tell you that you will have 90 minutes a day, that still means only one log-in a day per device.

some additional comments about the area and things to do:
- we took a public bus to go to the lighthouse which was an interesting experience but an open-top taxi ride back was more refreshing in the heat and also much much faster, the view from the lighthouse is pretty good but the hike could be painful in the hot weather. bring water.

- going to a Waterpark across the street from the hotel was a big mistake. Half of the rides were not open and after going down the very first ride which was not even the "scariest" one out there, I flipped upon entering the pool and hit my head on the cement bottom as the depth of the pool was only knee-deep. We had to leave immediately to see a doctor, but it really made me wonder about the overall safety and quality of the other rides in that park. to stay safe - avoid it or bring a helmet.

- we went on an excursion to the Deer Island (snorkeling, banana boat riding, bbq) with Sunwing and while it was not bad, we would not do it again or recommend it to anyone else. it just was not worth the money. snorkeling sucked - there was not much to see at all. bbq took forever to be prepared, so we basically killed half a day on a different beach but had to pay $70 for that... would have been better off at the hotel.

- if you will decide to go for a free photoshoot at the hotel - keep in mind that there will probably be 4 other couples doing it at the same time with you... we still ended up buying a few photos but overall the experience did not feel very personable. same poses, and rushed...

Room Tip: all the rooms face the ocean but if you do not want to get stuck waiting for an elevator and having...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank sirenka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kelowna
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2014 via mobile

For the last 5 years we have visited our time share at Blue Bay Grand Esmerelda on the Myan Riviera. This year we visited our travel agent and discovered that we could get a last minute 7day deal to the Riu cheaper than what it would cost to returned to B B G E again. (Take note blue bay) Wow were we pleasantly surprised at this terrific hotel. The food was great, especially the main buffet, the hotel was spotlessly clean, the staff were friendly and the pools an the beach were fabulous. Of coarse the Elevators were a problem but we had a room on the 2nd floor and even for two people in their 70s a few stairs were not too bad to climb.
We will return to our time share sometime, but the Riu is well worth another visit.

Stayed April 2014
Helpful?
Thank kelownasplash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2014 via mobile

I've been to a number of all-inclusives over the past 8 years but this one has earned my coveted
W-o-W! review.

I can tell you we spent a week at this resort and I can't even give you feedback on the ala carte dining. The buffet was amazing each and every meal.

From the time we arrived till the time we left we were catered to and treated like kings and queens. The staff were beyond amazing.

I've stayed at 3 different Riu properties (2 within the past year) Riu Caribe, Riu Jalisco, and Riu Emerald Bay. All were very nice. Excellent service, rooms, food, beaches, entertainment, etc. but the Riu Emerald Bay was just what you expect, in every way, of a 5 star resort.

Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank stclark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 May 2014

Week of April25-May2 . Very nice resort easy to get around elevators hit and miss. We did everything early to beat the rush as the resort was 80% mexican with there holidays falling in april/may. It was to much for us as we are there to relax and really had to work around it. The resort and the service was good, the room were good and the food also very good . The buffet was very good and a lot of choices.

Room Tip: All rooms are ocean view
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank jpo78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2014

Week of April 22-29, 2014, via Sunwing/Signature

Our first reaction on entering the RIU EMERALD BAY was WOW! What a beautiful hotel, both inside and out. From the lobby windows, the gorgeous blues of the skies and ever-in-motion ocean had us congratulating ourselves on choosing to holiday here as a change from our favourite of the last 3 years, the Viva Wyndham Tangerine in Cabarete, Puerto Plata.

Unlike most vacationers, we search for beaches with waves suitable for body (not board) surfing. Cabarete, if you don't get your head taken off by the wind-surfers who sometimes come too close to swimmers, is the best we've found outside of Lagunamar on Margarita Island, Venezuela. Photos and videos we found online made Riu Emerald Bay look like just what we wanted for my 72-year-old hubby who still thinks he's 16 when he body surfs. Sadly, this trip, he ended up feeling every bit of his 72 years as he battled the dreadful backwash and 8-9ft waves that dumped endlessly on shore. He "caught" and "rode" 5 waves the first day, and by the end of the week, had given up any hope of catching even one. My husband is an Aussie who grew up on a beach and knows what is safe for body-surfing. As he ruefully said, "they would have closed our beach at home if it were like this!"

So, yes, folks could venture into the waters of the beach but only the very brave (or stupid) went further than 20 feet from the shore. One couple did, at the far end of the beach, and had to be rescued and carted off by emergency services.The water temperature was lovely, about 77 degrees. Good for a quick dip to cool off. What was best about this beach was walking along it. Just a fantastic "walking beach" with firm, level sand that didn't make your ankles and calves ache even after a kilometer or two of walking. And this beach is so long you could walk for miles if you wanted to. Magnificent with the roar of the waves in your ears, fabulous 30 degree temps, and endless blue skies overhead.

Then, there's the resort itself: how anyone can complain about the food beats me! It was a feast, a banquet, with so much to choose from at every meal. Lots of marvellous salads, fresh fruits, and meats and fish done every which way night after night. Of course, as we've found with most of the vacation places, the beef was usually tough unless it was in a stew, but with so much else to choose from, it wasn't missed. I'm not a huge lamb eater, but the one night they had it, I couldn't get enough of it. Tender and tasty! Soups, as I always find, were fabulous. But the coffee was terrible. The pre-mixed powdered cappucino was the most popular choice, it seemed, for a lot of diners. While I despise chemical-laden mixes, even I succumbed to having my coffee that way. More palatable.

Our room was on the 6th floor and offered a wonderful view of the pools below and the ocean. I spent a lot of time relaxing on the balcony and taking it all in. The room itself was spacious, clean, with a well-stocked in room bar and mini-fridge. But we didn't make much use of either as we spent most of our time on the beach near the pool bars. By the end of the week, that was an end of the beach I came to hate, thanks to the non-stop noise from the swim-up bar and the music and resort activities on the closer large pool. Put it this way: if one went to this resort looking to have a peaceful holiday, stay well away from this "active" end of the resort. The noise was relentless, made worse by something no-one told us: this was Easter vacation week for Mexico and it sounded like half of Mexico's families stayed at the RIU with us. Can't blame them of course: it's a fantastic resort. But for us, it was a case of bad timing, both for the surf and the sheer volume of children and adults everywhere! Some have complained that made swimming in the pools difficult. But what I personally found worse was the racket of screaming children and the clatter of dishes, knifes and forks and endless traffic of people around 9pm in the dining room. It was like Grand Central Station trying to get to the food and get back to your table without someone bumping into you!

One of the best things for me, personally, was taking advantage of the other 50m curvy pool on the property between 7-8 am each morning. I'm a lap-swimmer and I've learned over the years of travelling to resorts that if I want to get in a good swim, I need to hit the pool before everyone else does. So what a joy to have that long pool all to myself to work out in first thing in the morning.

What did we like apart from that? The beautiful, friendly service by everyone from bartenders to maids, to client services at the desk; the happy smiling faces on the animation teams, the floor sweepers, the bathroom attendants and maintenance people. Our room was quiet, the bed comfortable, the sunset views amazing. And the evening entertainment shows in the stunning, large theater were very good and not overly long.

But as for those elevators everyone complains about, well, yes, they were a problem, particularly with so many people there. There are only 3 elevators that hold only about 10 people, servicing 18 floors. Horribly inadequate at peak times like breakfast and dinner and after the shows.

After reading other reviews on here, and on the suggestion of some Americans we befriended at the resort, we did walk to Mr. Lionsos at the cliff end of the beach for lunch and free Tequila sampling. Our lobster/shrimp dinners were one of the best meals we had during our stay and cost us each only $22. We sampled regular, amaretto and coffee tequila made on a local plantation. It was superb. A bottle of regular and coffee came home with us, for only $20 each. And we're not tequila fans ... that's how good it was! I highly recommend a visit to Mr. Lionso's.

Well I could go on and on but this is long enough. Would we go back? Not unless someone could guarantee a more surfable surf ... and who can promise you that! That's not the resort's fault. So in the end, between the surf, the Easter vacationers, I'd have to say what I said in my title: beautiful resort, bad timing ... if what one wanted was a peaceful vacation and a good surfing beach. But if you like lots of commotion, motion, excitement and noise, go for it!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank cruiseroo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Whitby, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2014

We are just back from our holiday at the Riu Emerald Bay in Mexico, the hotel was very nice the staff excellent but never go to Mexico during Easter as the kids have a 2 week holiday, our hotel was overrun with children could hardly get into the pools although we had 6 pools. The food was passable we are not great on Mexican food but we could always find something to eat the bars were good but you had to ask for the international drinks otherwise it would be local. We had a great room on the 14th floor the view was beautiful. All in all it was a good holiday but we would not return as we are used to the Riu Palaces which do give you more for your money.

Room Tip: Take a room higher up for the view, we had no problem with elevators eventhough the hotel was comple...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Renate B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Emerald Bay

Property: Hotel Riu Emerald Bay
Address: Av. Sabalo-Cerritos #3404 zona costera cerritos | Nuevo Mazatlán - Sinaloa, Mazatlan 82110, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Sinaloa > Mazatlan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Mazatlan
#7 Spa Hotel in Mazatlan
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Mazatlan
#10 Romantic Hotel in Mazatlan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Emerald Bay 3.5*
Number of rooms: 716
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Opening summer 2009 * 12 km / 7.45 Miles from Mazatlan, overlooking the Pacific Ocean * Located on Playa Las Brujas beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 20-story main building * Surrounded by 13.500 M2 / 16.15 Sq. Yards of lush gardens * 10 km / 6.2 Miles from various shops * 12 km / 7.45 Miles from Mazatlan * 32 km / 19.87 Miles from the airport * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Emerald Bay Mazatlan

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