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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

My husband and I stayed at the Riu Lupita last year and fell in love with it, so we decided to stay again this year.

The Riu Lupita is a small, cozy, all inclusive resort that is beautiful. We had booked everything through Vacation Express, just as we had last year. Vacation Express charters the jet, books the hotel, and arranges your transportation to and from the hotel. You fly down and back with the same people, but not everyone stays at the same resort. We had booked a king bed, but when we arrived at noon, it wasn’t ready. They do tell you on paperwork that check-in is at 3:00, but we arrived around noon last year and our room was ready and we were in it before 1:00; Nevertheless, it wasn’t ready this time. They told us we could store our luggage in a room and go have a drink, lunch, and check back at 2:00. We did that, but at 2:00 no room was ready for us. At two o’clock, they told us just a few more minutes so we sat down in the lobby to wait “a few minutes”. Everyone coming in after us were taken to their rooms after check-in. The person at the desk asked if we wanted a king bed or a room with two beds – they had one with two beds ready, but we wanted the king bed so we had to wait.

At 3:00, I checked again, still not ready. We had wasted a whole day at this point that we could have been enjoying in the pool. Finally around 3:30 it was ready. My husband went to the Relaxation pool while I unpacked. I put items in the safe, but when I tried to program in the code I wanted to use, it would show in a 1 instead of 8. So I went with all 1s. When I tried to open it, I got an “error, incorrect code” message.

I tried calling the desk, but I couldn’t get the phone to work so I marched down to the desk and the manager, Carlos, came back with me to unlock the safe for me. We tried it again and he told me not to use 4 because that number didn’t work. After I tried again and he saw that it wouldn’t work, the maintenance man came and had to replace the entire electronics part. Viola! It now works, so I was happy. Carlos tried the phone for me and it worked fine for him. I asked him if zero was what I dialed to call the desk and he told me then, that you have to dial 9 first. I saw nothing anywhere that told me that, but I had not looked through the books in the room yet. Just for safety purposes, he switched out the phone as well.

Later, we had trouble getting the door to open when we unlocked it. This time I talked to Svetlana, another manager. She walked back with me and it opened fine for her and for Carlos. I noticed that she was pulling the door toward her, so that was the trick. Another issue was that the patio door was unlocked and I couldn’t find anywhere to lock it. I asked about that and she showed me how to lock it. It’s hidden behind the curtains. Once she pulled them back far enough, the lock is where the two doors meet. If yours is unlocked when you check in, just pull the curtains back until you see it at the top where both doors meet. It’s not in the logical place where the lock for most patio doors is. It’s actually a pretty good way of locking the doors!

In between all of this, we had dinner at the Mexican restaurant because we liked it so much last year. We loved the grilled grouper so we both ordered that, but what we go was some kind of cheese filled pepper. Disappointed, we went to the bar and waited for the show to start. We waited forever and finally went to bed. It had been a very long day for us and we were tired.

I can tell you there is not much if any alcohol in the drinks. It doesn’t take much for me to get tipsy and when I can drink three or four margaritas and not feel anything, I know there’s nothing in them. We asked for double shots so we could taste the alcohol.
The bartenders also didn’t seem to understand margarita for some reason – I thought that was a Mexican drink, but we always had to explain it. I think there were more bartenders who could speak and understand English last year compared to this year.

Weather reports for the week didn’t look promising, but the next morning, the sun was out bright and beautiful so we decided to go to the beach club. We loved it last year and wished we’d gone more days, so this year we went every day except for one. You have to take the bus to the beach club and it is only a 10 minute ride; the bus comes every 30 minutes. The Beach Club is beautiful with plenty of chairs, but if you want some that stay in the shade for most of the day, you need to get there on the first or second bus. There is a buffet area for lunch with tables and a bar is in there as well. They have some items out before lunch, which begins at noon, I think, but be very careful as the birds are all over that food. Some items, such as sandwiches, are inside of a glass case, so those are safe. The drinks at the Beach Club seem to be a little stronger than those at the resort bar and the bartender there is great.

One thing I felt was unsanitary were the number of small children and babies in the pool who were still in diapers. We stopped getting in the pools because of this. We saw a lifeguard one day at the Beach Club, but that was the only day. There is a shower, but many people just got in the pool without washing the sand off their feet.

The buffet at the Beach Club becomes the Steakhouse at night – what a great idea! We booked every other night here. You have to reserve it at the main buffet each morning. We enjoyed our dinners there. They use the tables under the covered area of the buffet, and you have the view of the ocean, the moon, and a nice ocean breeze. You can hear the clapping of the palm trees as they wave back and forth with the wind, making it such a nice atmosphere for dinner.

On the last night we were there, a couple had a table set up just for them on the beach by the pool complete with white table cloth and Tiki torches. There was a full moon that evening that displayed a romantic light on the ocean…what a perfect evening for them!

Last year I had a problem with my steak not being cooked a medium, so this year I ordered it medium well and it was cooked more to my liking. We also got spare ribs two nights, which are very good! They have a shrimp and fish skewers that I got last year, but didn’t really like the fish so I skipped that this year. The shrimp skewer was excellent last year, but I don’t think you can order only the shrimp skewer.

Before your meal comes, you have an appetizer of shrimp cocktail and mozzarella sticks, and there is a small loaf of bread at your plate when you arrive. I ordered the cheese cake for dessert two nights and the fruit salad with ice cream one night. My husband ordered the apple pie and the cheese cake. We enjoyed the Beach Club both during the day and for dinner and I think you will love it as well.

The main buffet at the resort has been enclosed since we were there last and is very nice. It keeps the birds and the stray cats out, and the air conditioning is quite nice, as well! It is a small buffet, but it has a good variety of food. It opens for breakfast at 7:00, 1:00 for lunch and 6:30 for dinner. All the other restaurants open at 7:00 for dinner. You have a choice of meats, hamburgers/hot dogs, breads, fruits, pastas, etc. I’m sure you can find something to eat here and it is all good. For breakfast, the chef will make any kind of egg for you. I ordered an egg white omelet every morning and loved it! The fresh fruit is wonderful and I got my fill of guacamole, something I love and can’t have every day at home. I think I had it at breakfast and lunch!

There are many juices to choose from and they serve coffee as well. I learned that if I want creamer with my coffee, I need to ask for milk. I so wish I’d taken Spanish in high school!

As I mentioned earlier, we wanted the grouper at the Mexican restaurant so we tried again on one of the nights we didn’t go to the Beach Club. The waiter this time understood and we got our grouper, but mine had a mushy texture to it, so I was a little disappointed, it was not as good as last year. This restaurant has a small buffet with quite a few items that you can get as appetizers. There is a very good shrimp cocktail-like item that I couldn’t get enough of! We did not eat at the Italian restaurant this year. I don’t think you will go hungry, but after the buffet closes, there are no snacks, so if you need them, take some; as a diabetic, I brought some along, as well as a baggie of walnuts for those times when my blood sugar spiked and I needed to bring it down quickly.

One cloudy day we decided to stay at the Relaxation Pool. They have a larger pool in the main area beside the bar, but the Relaxation Pool is beside the gym and the disco. It is meant to be quiet and last year they didn’t allow children in it, but this year was different, again even allowing babies in diapers. There is a kiddie pool with slides, but for some reason no one uses it. There were many more children this year than last and quite a few at the Relaxation Pool so it wasn’t as quiet as it should have been. One thing we missed from last year was the coatis. Last year we had bands of them, but we only saw a few single ones here and there. We noticed the crows attacking them, so I guess that was what was keeping them away. They are cute little animals who last year would come around the pool stealing your drinks! There was a lady at the pool who would feed them something like cereal and when she did that, quite a few would come, but still not as many as last year.

We also noticed that this year no one brought drinks to the Relaxation Pool. Last year someone would come around every hour or so with mixed drinks, water, or soft drinks for those around this pool. We got ours from the bar ourselves, but it was a nice thing to have them brought to you.

The shows were pretty good. One evening there was a Michael Jackson impersonator who was very good! The crowd screamed when he came out and he was a very good Michael! The next night was a female performer singing ‘70s songs. We had a Mariachi band with a singer one night and my favorite was a Mayan show. The story was very good and the performers were excellent, I really liked them. The stage is outside and directly across from the bar area so you can sit at one of the tables to watch the show. They also have chairs lined up in front of the stage. Try to get a table under a fan or one at the edge of the covering so you can get some of the outside breeze, it’s hot inside the bar area.

Our room was nice. We were in building 28 which is right behind the Relaxation Pool, which gave us a quick walk there. Last year we had building 19 and liked that location because it is close to the main venues, but we really liked building 28 because it is so close to the Relaxation Pool. The tile floors in the room are slippery so be careful, I almost slipped a couple of times. The bathroom is a good size and the shower is a very nice size, but again the tiles are slippery. You have a shampoo/conditioner dispenser in the shower and a bar of soap. The hair dryer works very well, so you should not need to bring one from home. The patios are a good size and they have a thing on the wall to hang your wet clothes and towels on, but they never get completely dry, I guess because of the humidity. Even our clothes in the closet felt damp. There is a small refrigerator in the room and is stocked with water, soft drinks, and beer. You also have a liquor dispenser in the room. There is a ceiling fan which works very well.

Wifi is free and works in all public areas -- the pools, the restaurants, and the Beach Club. It worked for us in our room, I think because we were so close to the Relaxation Pool; it did not work in our room last year. You will get your sign-in and password when you check in so don’t lose that. Every so often you may need to reconnect.

In our opinion, sanitation/hygiene by food staff could be better. The chef at the Beach Club would be preparing food, stop, take trash from a guest to throw away (there are trash cans all around) and began working on the food again without washing her hands or changing gloves. She handed a key to another staff member, took it back, and began working with food again, both times without washing hands after touching the unsanitary key. The staff would move bread and other food items around after touching non food items without washing hands, both at the Beach Club and the main buffet. Of course the guests were not much better. I saw a woman put her ice cream cone back with the others when she couldn’t get the ice cream out and a man threw the scoop down on top of the ice cream when he couldn’t get it out with the handle touching the ice cream. A little girl, pulled out several ice cream cones, touching and looking at all of them before putting them all back with the others; no parent was with her. Then there is the ice scoop. They put a plate out for it, but the majority of people would leave it on top of the ice with the handle touching the ice. There was a bottle of hand sanitizer at the bar, but I didn’t see anyone use it except for me. What can you do?

We love the Riu Lupita and I want to thank Carlos and Svetlana for their help the first day; It had been a long travel day, I was frustrated and I’m sure I became a pain in the you know what. All of the front desk staff knew my name and room number whenever I came to the desk, but most of them were nice and very helpful, especially Daniel. We ultimately enjoyed our stay as the peacefulness and beauty of the resort erased my first day frustrations, and we will probably go there again. If you like small and cozy, you, too, will love Riu Lupita!

  • Stayed: May 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank terrec
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Just back from two weeks at the Riu Lupita, we had a fantastic time. The hotel was great, all the staff from reception, Animation team, restaurants to the bar staff are just so friendly, Blanca and Raul in the main bar are just superb and make the best mojito’s!!
The rooms are clean and comfortable with a free mini bar.
The food in the main buffet restaurant was very good and always plenty of choice, you will never go hungry. We visited the steakhouse and Italian ala carte and both were very good.
Pool areas and gardens are very well looked after.
It’s no 5 star luxury hotel, but if you want a nice friendly, clean, and fun hotel then this is the place to go.
We go to Mexico every year and been is so many different hotels and can honestly say Riu Lupita we will be back!!!

Stayed: June 2018, travelled as a couple
Thank simontG1843AY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Very good customer service across hotel except need more people to understand/translate english. Food options a plenty but everything always cold. Shuttle is great help. Very close to 5th Ave district. Plenty of free liquor. Overall wonderful place to stay

Stayed: May 2018
Thank Maxx530
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

First I’m going to start off, with a bad service, people complaining about everything, the drinks were fully water. One of the worst resorts i ever been in my life, and they also discriminate and they were racist. If you want to have fun and be loud and party please stay away from this resort

Stayed: June 2018, travelled with friends
Thank jharibel c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiuHotelsandResorts, Online Reputation Manager at Hotel Riu Lupita, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Dear guest,

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback and for expressing your concerns.

We place great importance on providing our guests with unforgettable experiences and it is disappointing to see that you left our hotel thinking otherwise. We appreciate our guests’ comments since they help us improve our services, and for this reason, your impressions will be shared with the relevant department in line with the main goal to achieve the highest levels of customer satisfaction.

We really hope you will give us a second chance to redeem ourselves and to demonstrate the high standards of guest service and quality that are typical at our resorts.

With our best wishes we remain,

Hotel Riu Lupita
Online Reputation Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

Me and the wife newly married on honeymoon straight on arrival we was given prompt service on check in brilliant service for 2 weeks straight we had 5 star service throughout the honeymoon the life guard (Ricardo Roman alveraz) made us feel at home and the rest of the bar staff and entertainment staff the food was fantastic all the time only couple problem's I got locked in toilet the lock broke not hotels fault and the other problem I wish I could of stayed

Stayed: August 2017, travelled as a couple
1  Thank darren949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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