We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Fantastic all inclusive”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 8 more sites!
Grand Velas Riviera Maya
Ranked #4 of 215 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 20 September 2012

Let me start by saying I had very high expectations of this resort going into this vacation. I can say most if not all of them were exceeded during the trip. GV is truly a place to just relax and forget about the world around you. I will try to summarize the highlights:
Rooms
We stayed in the zen section, the room was more then we needed, considering we spent little time in the room other then to shower and sleep. A great touch was the rainfall shower that provided a nice relief after a full day out and about in the Mexican sun. When we arrived the mini fridge had a good array of soda and beer in it. The first day there we told room service that we we didn't drink soda and by the next day when we came back all of the soda had been removed and it was replaced with water and beer! Just a little touch but that was a theme for our entire week as to the level of service we received.
Tip: if you are traveling as a couple the zen section is fine, but if you are traveling with children this section would be an inconvenience because of the need to take the shuttle back and forth from the room to the pool/beach area.
Service
I will preface this section by saying when we were there the resort was only 10% full. The service here was like no other I received at any all inclusive, which includes royal hideaway, iberostar grand and secrets. Every single staff member we encountered throughout the week went above and beyond fulfill our every request. This brings me to what seems to be the biggest issue on TA, tipping. We went in with the intention only to tip if we felt we got exceptional service. I think it is something you really have to experience rather then me trying to explain it, needless to say we tipped and tipped often. But we didn't go out of control, a few dollars at the buffet, usually $5 if we sat down and ordered from the menu at lunch. Dinner we tipped more, but the service there was just so over the top we felt the staff really deserved it, especially at Autor.

Food
Breakfast: If we were able to eat at Bistro every day it would have been spectacular, but since there was such a low occupancy it was closed many mornings. Azul was ok but they really didn't change up the buffet often. We found ourselves ordering omelets everyday.

Lunch: again Bistro was great, Azul only ok.

Dinner: out of this world. We ate at all of the restaurants and none disappointed. I would rank them in the following order, Autor (this is not for everyone molecular cuisine takes getting used to but it was simply fantastic), Piaf, Lucca, Sen Lin, and ironically the one we liked the least was the Frida.

Pool/beach

The pool was the biggest I've seen, the pool concierges would come by as they told us every 7-9 minutes to see if we needed anything. There was one afternoon my wife and I were sitting on the daybeds having some drinks when Roberto came by and saw the ice began to melt in my drink. He quickly came back and replaced it with a fresh one. He said "you are on vacation you should not be drinking a warm drink"

The ocean is a bit rocky but there is an area right in front of the hotel the you can go in up to your waste and there is no need for water shoes.

Spa
Expensive but worth it especially the water journey. TIP: sign up for the fractional ownership tour (glorified time share) it literally takes 20 minutes, no pressure. They give you a $150 gift certificate to use at the spa, this really defrays the high prices.

Overall I would highly reccomend this resort for both couples and families, the price is steep but once you see what you get you will feel you have gotten your monies worth and more!

Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
10  Thank j-doc23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (3,375)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

2,093 - 2,099 of 3,375 reviews

Reviewed 16 September 2012

My wife and I spent two weeks at this lovely resort for our honeymoon in June. I could wax lyrical about all of the aspects, but fear not I won't. Quite simply the resort is very good. The food was plentiful and very good quality. The buffet was very varied and we always found tasty stuff to eat. The other restaurants were also very good and you can book as many as you like, The sports bar was good for watching the football and the help yourself chilli chips and hotdogs was a nice change. Plenty of bars to choose from and we particularly enjoyed the beach bar on the adult section where the cocktails kept coming. The resort is very large and our room was about halfway between the beach and lobby. A basic room which was huge with a lovely bathroom and good aircon. Gardens are immaculate. It took us a long time to adjust to. the time difference and the flight is very long. All staff we encountered were wonderful and could not do enough for us. This brings me onto other guests. I will not mention nationalities as it was just people from a particular country. If you are rude to staff and talk to them like they are something on the bottom of your shoe you will get the reaction you deserve. The eating habits of some was disgusting and it is no coincidence that they were the rudest. The walk around resort was good and not a chore as others describe. Yes there are rowdy bars (party pool) but plenty of other areas to find peace and quiet. We took a taxi into town one day and strolled around the shops and bought our gifts there. Also stopped off at a roadside bar and had a meal. You are constantly hassled to go into shops and even at our table. There is also a thriving trade in exotic animals used to have photos taken with. Snakes, Iguanas, monkeys, tigers, Lions and leopards. I kid you not. I have been on Safari in Kenya and think I saw more Lion cubs along this shopping street. We personally think this is disgusting.Would we go back? Most definately, but there are so many places to see so probably won't.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Darbster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 September 2012

I have been to about 7 different all inclusives on the Riviera Maya. All of them benefit from the beautiful clear ocean and breezy beaches. But Grand Velas was exponentially better than any place we have stayed. The service was impeccable and the food was so creative and delicious. We stayed in the Grand Class (adults only) area and it was amazing -- quiet and peaceful --feels like miles away from the very active/loud family area. We tried all of the dining options and honestly loved them all. The evening entertainment was limited, but sufficient. Most nights we just relaxed in bliss on our private patio gazing at the moon reflecting off of the ocean. Heaven!!

Room Tip: If you are looking for romance, the Grand Class section is worth the extra money.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank Shera14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 September 2012

This hotel was magnificent, went there last week and I must say it is the best hotel I have ever stayed at. Everything was clean and breathtaking. The restaurants all serve excellent food.
If I ever go back to Playa Del Carmen will not even consider another hotel. Just take a short stroll to the west at the beach and see the princess hotel and you will see how incredible the Grand Velas is.

Main concern I want to address here is the tipping, let me say I almost cancelled my reservation due to the reviews I had read at TA about the tipping and thought I was already spending enough on the vacation to then have to worry if I had to tip or not and if too little or too much. Believe ideally the hotel shouldn´t really give the option to tip if it were completely all inclusive, however my view is they absolutely have the best personnel possible, so taking the tipping option out of the check, or not giving the option to tip would likely make them lose the best people. At the end we did tip on every meal abt usd 10 each and we had great service. I think even if we hadn´t tipped we would have had the same service, but believe me, everyone goes out of their way for you so it is well deserved. We stayed beginning of Sept and the hotel was maybe 15% occupied.

Room Tip: If staying on the Grand Class suites, push to get on the 3rd Floor, the terraces are phenomenal.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Santiago A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 September 2012 via mobile

Pros:The resort itself is beautiful and clean. Wonderful job with my friends wedding. Food is surprisingly good for an all inclusive. Room service is awesome! Molton brown bath products-thumbs up. Buggy rides at certain locations is nice but no door to door service. 

Cons: Pools close at 7pm. A few of our luggages were sent to the wrong rooms so the staff had to go around and find them. One of the rooms (shared by two guys) were suppose to have a double bed but the room wasn't changed until the last night of our trip (I believe the third night so one guy had to sleep on a small cot). Service is okay-not all staff were all smiles and helpful which I expect in a 5 star resort. Lots of Mosquitos! I ended up with about 8 scars. Mosquito repellent (provided by resort) did not help. The outdoor garden/shower is useless because you will be eaten alive. 

The most disappointing part of the trip was the lack of professionalism from the management/security department regarding stolen property from our room.

To make a long story short, we were at Grand Velas for a wedding reception and to save money, 3 girlfriends of the bride decided to room together. One of the girls stole money from the wallet of another from the safe box. The issue was reported to Orian/head security and we were promised a report of the safe box log-in/out and door log the next day (because the girl had made up a whole story about how the door was left open, etc). The next day came and the staff just gave us the run around (head of security not in, wrong dates for log, machine was broken so they had to do it over) but that was already our checkout day so I was told that the reports would be emailed to me the next day. Of course I did not receive anything from them. We emailed back and forth a few times but it wasn't until we called and threatened them with bad reviews on all the Internet travel sites that we finally received the report via email as promised about 3 weeks after our promised date. The resort obviously did not take us seriously as they knew it was an "inside job" but we just wanted the proof to show the bride. Anyway, the girl eventually gave the money back and made herself many enemies. No Vegas story can beat my Grand Velas story!

  • Stayed: May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Wendy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2012

I will do this from start to finish as best I can, offering suggestions along the way.

We booked onlineand by phone, reserved private transportation to/from airport for the $150.00 fee. WELL WORTH IT. Doors open at airport and there is a gentleman holding a sign with our name on it. Right to the a/c'd van and off we go

Also booked all our restaurant reservations for eight nights on line, they send back a list of your reservations with confirmation numbers. This was GREAT because we didn't have to decide where to eat, unless we wanted to change, which we did a couple times and the conceirge couldnt have been more helpful. RESERVATIONS for dinner are no problem when you book online before you arrive. Print out your confirmation email with list of reservations and keep it with your travel papers, this helps when you change a reservation.

We had lunch at Azul as soon as we finished with a brief and easy check in and quick entry to the same suite we have used everytime. We were in the pool by 1:30 P. M. having a margarita! We were up since 3:30am, so we did cancel our first night of dining and instead ordered room service which is AMAZING! You must know the food at this resort is truly outstanding compare to all others we have ever been to.

Breakfast in Azul, the beautiful buffet restaurant on sea's edge is always bountiful and varied. We love eating here in the morning. Some things could be warmer--the pancakes and French toast--for example, but if those on the buffet do not satisfy your desire for hot,you can easily order them alacarte from the most accommodating servers. The buffet is beautiful, bountiful, and perfectly maintained and restocked throughout the day. it is a wonderful place for lunch also. The adults only sit down breakfast at Bistro is a perfect alternative. The waffles here are amazing and the bacon was the best I've had in a long time--warm and crunchy! Nice menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at this restaurant, coconut shrimp are excellent! A wonderful waitstaff too. Cladio, Aldopho, all of them so pleasant so kind, so helpful.

The pools are perfect and varied. The main pool is very, very large and right up on the beach for fabulous views of the sea and Cozumel. same with the adult pool but not as big. The children's pool is right behind the main pool and heated in the winter months as is a portion of the main pool. The pool bar and menu is really good, the French fries are perfect and the ceviche is excellent. The chips are always fresh and grunchy as is the quacamole, the salsa, and the dips. The landscaping is just beautiful and clean as can be, you don't see trash anywhere, you don't see big ugly trash cans anywhere, it is all beautiful with the staff always working to keep it perfect!

The beach is white sand, wider than most, and raked every single morning. They are constantly walking up and down to clean it during the day and life guards on duty. There are a couple spots cleared for frolicking in the water, but I don't know about a full-fledged swim. There is, however, plenty of room in the pool for laps. if you want something a little different and more peaceful (at least when we were there) the zen pool back where the master suites are located is also beautiful. Many different levels, not as vast as the main pool but very nice. The Chakka Restaurant buffet was closed because we were there during a slow month, but it is convenient to the pool for breakfast and lunch when high season begins again. You walk through beautiful wooden paths and bridges to get to this pool, Chakka, and the Italian restaurant Luna

This was our third time there and we get the same room every time because it is only separated from the beach by a gorgeous lawn and garden. We can be at the pool or the restaurant in less than 30 seconds. Most rooms in ambassador are a short walk anywhere and I'd be surprised if not all have a view of the sea as the building's design demands it. The rooms in the grand section are for adults only with a couple floors allowing children 12 and over. The rooms here are larger in and out with a sofa and revolving flat screen tv if one is still watching tv while another sleeps. Walk in closet, huge bath and patio/deck are added bonuses. The rooms are seconds away from Piaf, De Autor, and Bistro--adults only restaurants as well as the skybar. The restaurants are architecturally designed to not disturb vacationers while in their rooms.

In the Zen section you can walk to my favorite restaurant Sin Lin or take the short shuttle ride from ambassador or grand sections. This restaurant is situated at the end of a grand lobby and convention center entryway. IT IS GORGEOUS!!!!! Loved the food here! The coconut shrimp appetizer and the duck was Excellent. Servers are wonderful in every single restaurant. So as not to repeat myself, the staff at this resort is impeccable in my opinion, and I can't imagine why a few others say otherwise. Three times there, a total of over 20 days, three or more meals each day, and we never, ever had a complaint about a single person. I wish I could thank them all personally again on here because they deserve every and any tips they get. SO, ABOUT THE TIPPING----I don't understand why people get so upset about being asked to sign a check after each meal regardless of the reason. Yes it is an all inclusive, yes tips are included, and yes your order is listed on the check, but we don't tip based on the amount, in fact we rarely even look at the check, we sign and then add a tip according to the amount of service these servers do to satisfy everything you want or need. Breakfast is usually ten, same for lunch; dinner we leave either 40 or 50 because these servers are required to go far beyond great service, they are genuinely kind and happy, and worth every penny. At the pool we tip $2 every few drinks. I really don't know what the big deal is from other posters. We enjoy tipping for excellent servers, all around it makes everyone feel good.

The spa is a MUST SEE to repeat others. I had a manicure and pedicure while there, best I EVER had!

April at the business center in ambassador is by far the sweetest young woman. She tried to help me print out my boarding pass, while I tried to remember passwors, etc. She was so patient with me and accommodating. I hope to reward her on my next visit as she wasn't there when I went back the next day. YOU DO NOT need to walk around with money in your pocket as others would leave you to believe. I HAVE NEVER felt forced to tip or pay for anything that I didn't contract to do in my reservation. Again, I don't know from where that idea comes.

The boutiques have beautiful clothing, jewelry, and arts and crafts items, just wonderful. Not much on personal toiletries, etc. but enough to get you through your stay if need be. I did suggest that they sell men's summer cloth shoes to fulfill the dress code for restaurants.

The gym in the convention center is very well equipped, very well! The one in ambassador is a little smaller but it to is well equipped.

Another thing I want to clear up is the shuttles to various sections of the resort. Let me do my best to describe the geography of the resort first. Upon entering the fabulous gates to this resort, you travel a beautifully landscaped lane to your section. If you booked the Master Zen section, you will be there first as it is on the right about 1/4 or more. It is beautiful, quiet, and in the mangroves, the zen is built in, it is quiet peaceful and about 1/4 mile from the beach. Restarants in this section are Chakkah, Luna, and Sin Lin. The architecture and lush landscapes are so well cared for, manicured, and beautiful. The outstanding spa is also in this section. If you booked the Ambassador section you will continue down the lane, passed the zen section, straight towards the beach, Here you will enter a gorgeous lobby also overlooking the main pool and sea. In this section is the restaurant Azul, Frida, Karaoke bar, and Piano bar. The hallways in this resort are as beautiful as can be, open air and landscaped like no other I have seen. A walk to your room is a treat, not a burden. Here you are close by to everything this section has to offer as well as the grand section. If you booked the grand section, when you get to the end of the lane at ambassador, the van will go to the right or south. Here you will be dropped off at yet another gorgeous lobby. Quiet and peceful for adults only and older children. This section is all oceanfront rooms, huge and beautiful. Included in this section is the adult pool, Bistro, Bistro bar with TVs, no stools though, Piaf, and de Autor restaurants. There is also the sky bar overlooking the sea and Cozumel at night. NO children can go to these restaurants.

The ambassador and grande sections are no more than a pleasant short walk between the door. The landscape and views along the way are so beautiful that you wish the walk were longer. The shuttles come to you almost the moment you enter the lobby if you are traveling to and from the zen section, and it is no where near as long as some posters would have you believe. What their issue is I don't know, because I have been to other mega resorts where the rooms were so far from the beach and pool and we had to walk long foot paths in the sweltering sun. YOU NEVER HAVE TO WALK FAR AT GRAND VELAS, and whatever walk you do take is beautiful and enjoyable!

This resort is CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN. We are afraid to go anywhere else because we fear nothing will ever compare with the beauty, the cleanliness, the EXCELLENT staff, the architecture,etc.

One thing to keep in mind after reading my review is that we travel in the off season--late August and once mid January. Both times there were a significantly less amount of people there. We eat at 7:00 and restaurants were NEVER fill or crowded, nor was the pool. There are no shows and mediocre entertainment or hoopla going on at this resort. It is sophisticated and classy. In response to others' complaints, it is all relative to when they went--busiest season or slowest season--what their expectations were, how well they did or DID NOT READ the website for Grand Velas. I do, however, get the feeling that some complainers are just that people who complain. I on the other hand am looking forward to our next visit.

Room Tip: If you can afford water journey at spa, go.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
21  Thank mare828
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2012

I often worry that reading so many great reviews on TripAdvisor before I go to a resort will make my expectations too high and then I will be disappointed when I arrive. Not a chance at Grand Velas. From start to finish it was first class. Rooms in the Ambassador section were HUGE and beautiful. Stocked bar and snack center in the room was a nice addition. I won't repeat all the other positive reviews except to say that the food is amazing. It certainly exceeds any other all-inclusive that I have been to (Sandals, Beaches, cruises, etc.). You must experience the signature restaurant (Cocina D'Autour) with its molecular cuisine. Even the buffets are great. Also don't miss the Spa. Prices may be high but it is the best spa experience I have had. Make sure you get there early enough to enjoy the Water Journey before your treatment. I opted for the guided tour (included with your spa treatment and I loved it.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Jsc145
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Playa del Carmen hotels
0.7 mi away
Banyan Tree Mayakoba
Banyan Tree Mayakoba
#3 of 215 in Playa del Carmen
2,219 reviews
0.8 mi away
Fairmont Mayakoba
Fairmont Mayakoba
#9 of 215 in Playa del Carmen
4,380 reviews
1.1 mi away
Rosewood Mayakoba
Rosewood Mayakoba
#2 of 215 in Playa del Carmen
1,804 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
6.9 mi away
Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso
Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso
#1 of 11 in Playa Paraiso
6,096 reviews
4.2 mi away
The Royal Playa del Carmen
The Royal Playa del Carmen
#12 of 215 in Playa del Carmen
16,877 reviews
5.6 mi away
Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Grand Velas Riviera Maya? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Address: Carretera Cancun Tulum Km 62 Playa Del Carmen Municipio De Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#2 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#3 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#4 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#16 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#17 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: £541 - £1,126 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Grand Velas Riviera Maya 5*
Number of rooms: 493
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grand Velas Riviera Maya is one of the newest resorts to distinguish Riviera Maya as a premier vacation destination. The uniquely Mexican world-class hospitality we provide is "Beyond All Inclusive, Beyond All Compare", and we are proud to be the only family-friendly All Inclusive resort in the Mexican Caribbean to have been rated Five Diamonds by the AAA. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, LoveHolidays, Booking.com, Expedia, Ebookers, HotelsClick, Evoline ltd, 5viajes2012 S.L., TripOnline SA and Cancelon so you can book your Grand Velas Riviera Maya reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Grand Velas All Suites & Spa Resort, Riviera Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Grand Velas All Suites And Spa Resort, Riviera Maya
Grand Velas Hotel Riviera Maya
Grand Velas Riviera Maya Mexico - Playa Del Carmen

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing