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“Just great for the price”

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Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya
Ranked #41 of 211 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 15 March 2013

Great food service friendly staff .. Beach excellent ... Really nothing bad to say..The restaurants are all good.. Buffet very good 15 min walk to playa de Carmen .... Must get a good deal though can get pricey but apple will honor its competitors prices ... Such much to do .... Can't wait to go back .....!!!

  • Stayed: January 2013
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1  Thank divingpro100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 14 March 2013

We stayed at Riu Palace Riviera Maya for 5 nights, arriving Feb. 22 and departing Feb. 27, 2013. This was our 5th trip to Mexico, our 6th stay at a Riu, and first stay in Playa del Carmen.

The ride from the airport is quite convenient. About 45 minutes to the resort. The resort itself is in the Playacar community, which is a gated neighborhood of condos and resorts about two miles long. It's also a nice place to walk.

We are very accustomed to all-inclusives. The resort itself was wonderful. The beach area is deep, and has plenty of space in both shaded and sunny areas. Loungers were plenty. The location is terrific, with almost a mile of beach to walk in both directions. No snorkeling at this location, because the wind and surf was pretty strong every day we were there.

The pool area is spread out and spacious, unspoiled by any modern renovation like at the Riu Palace Mexico, which we visited but really didn't care for. We also walked through the Riu Playacar and Riu Yucatan, and were very glad with our choice of the Riu Palace Riviera Maya.

The staff was great. When I wanted "mucho agua, por favor," in the refrigerator, I got it. Our room, #1157, was on the same level as the sport bar. Unlike some Rius, our room felt close to everything and was very quiet at night. WiFi is free (call the desk for the code) but is slow and spotty. Take your insulated mugs for the beach. The pool bartenders will fill your mugs with whatever drinks you want.

Buffet food was good. Krystal restaurant main dishes were good; I had the beef. The appetizers are not. The Mexican restaurant was good; I had the fajitas. Chilis (steak house) was also good; I had the surf and turf and really enjoyed it. Never mind the feral cats that come to visit during dinner. They are not intrusive and obviously this is their nightly routine. They will appreciate a few tender pieces of chicken.

My only slight disappointment is that there was no evening flea market in the courtyard during our stay. We usually see one or two nights where local vendors set up stands to sell jewelry, clothing, and pieces of art. Not this time, and the hotel staff said that they were discontinued for some reason.

Our weather was tremendous, with sun and mid-80s every day. There were occasional clouds that blew through quickly. A work colleague arrived the day after we left. She experienced low to mid-70s during their entire 5-night stay and wished she had packed sweatpants and sweatshirt. I only mention this to indicate variations in the weather.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
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3  Thank OtisMadison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2013

I travel quite a bit and have become accustomed to business-quality hotels; thus, i may be more critical than most.

As to cleanliness: The Rui Palace pristine! There is a huge staff both inside and outside who are constantly cleaning, pruning, and painting. And as for location: The trip to/from the airport is a bit long compared to staying in Cancun, but once we arrived, we really appreciated the well maintained gated community and proximity of shopping and entertainment. Of course, the Caribbean is gorgeous. How can you go wrong with a view of the multihued water, large sandy beach, and palm trees? Another thing the Rui Palace has going in its favor is a cadre of friendly and accommodating staff--other than the reception staff.

We had an issue at check-in. Arriving around 1pm Sunday afternoon, and hungry, our assigned room was not ready. We were told to leave our bags and come back at 3pm. We were not given clear directions as to the location of restaurants, but eventually found our way to the pool bar where there we devoured the few chicken wings that were still left. We were anxious to change out of our winter clothes, so we got back to the desk promptly at 3:00 only to be assigned to an unacceptable room up on the third floor. When booking, we had requested a room close to the pool. This room was as far from the beach and pool as possible and featured a tiny balcony with a "view" of a stucco wall. The toilet was running, and the lights in the bathroom didn't work. We went back to ask for a different room and were assigned another room a few doors down the hall. Still dissatisfied I asked if something were available on the first floor, a little closer to the pool. I was told there was not. However at the same time a lady next to me had been assigned to a first floor room and wanted something higher up. When I mentioned that to the desk clerk, she was suddenly able to find us an acceptable room, on the first floor, with a nice-sized patio and a view of a palm tree. This room was located closer to the pool as well.

While the room was nice, the bed was not. The mattress and pillows were hard and the bed linens were rough. While the air conditioning worked the room smelled musty (As did our suitcases upon opening them when we got home.) There was also quite a bit of noise late at night from other doors closing. I expect better from a hotel that was billed as "5-Stars."

The food was more or less average. It might be fine for a 4 or 5-day stay, but after a week, it got pretty redundant. We tried all the specialty restaurants and were not impressed with any of them. The only exception I might make was the truffle that was served for desert at one of them.

So, while I would stay at the Rui Palace again if the opportunity arises, there are other resorts in the Rivera Maya that are as just good--or better.

Room Tip: Stay away from third floor rooms located near the lobby area!
  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Lindarentsen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2013

We spent a week at this resort in November. The staff at this resort were incredible, didn't matter if you were in the buffet or on the beach, service was fantastic. We ate all of our meals at the buffets, good food, great service. Our room faced the courtyard, it was nice, and the maid service was excellent. The beach is incredible, the ocean is amazing. Only a short stroll down the beach into town. I have seen some negative reviews posted regarding different issues at this resort, just know, you can never please everyone. In the time we spent there, we did notice, a lot of guest do not tip the servers, these staff members work very hard to make your vacation enjoyable, and they appreciate the tips they receive. We loved this resort and the staff, the quality of service so much we are returning in April.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank SunAndSand4Moi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2013

Just got back from a wonderful vacation at the Riu Palace. The hotel was spectacular, the food was excellent, the weather was amazing and the service was spot on!!!! I could not have asked for a better vacation. Every where you looked people were cleaning but they did it so inconspicuosly, you didn't even notice them. The rooms were always cleaned by the time we got back from the beautiful, white sand beach. The pool was also amazing with little coves to sit and have your poolside cocktails in. Loved it!! I would highly recommend this hotel to anyone. I travelled with 4 other woman and they all agreed, and we all know how difficult that is LOL!! No, but seriously, this is a hotel you want to stay in!!!

Room Tip: We stayed on the ground level and to be perfectly honest, we spent very little time in the room. Th...
  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank EileenPag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2013

We spent a week at Riu Palace Rivera Maya and there were a lot of wonderful things about the resort and a couple of not so wonderful things.. Starting with the GREAT things: Beach can’t be beat, Staff is one of the greatest we have ever experienced! Victor, Keke, Romeo, Joe and the rest of the gang at the pool bar were exceptional in every way! The servers in the morning at the Breakfast Buffet were outstanding as well, remembered our favorite morning drinks, coffee for the Husband and Mimosas for me! The Resort itself is elegant and reminds us of Casa Blanca and Morocco instead of Mexico, and is even prettier in real life than in the images.
Originally we were checked into room 2020 on the south section of the “horseshoe” facing out and we were facing the water treatment plant of the Wyndam Resort. It was loud and ugly, so we requested a room change and were told to pack up the next day before 12, go have lunch and come back and get our new room key. What an improvement! We were put into room 2126 on the North side with Palm trees as the view, it was perfect. We didn’t see the need for an upgrade to face the courtyard we like a bit more privacy. The move was seamless, and very convenient for us! Our room had a real king-sized bed not 2 beds pushed together. There is a master light switch when you enter the room that needs to be turned on or you will think you have no power in the room. Also the room water is non-potable, I brush my teeth with bottled water the Husband does not, no problems either way. Beds were a bit hard and sheets not very soft, upgrading here would be a big improvement. The location of the resort is perfect we walked to Playa Del Carmen every day, the resort is clean and we never needed anything during our stay. We often stay at The Royal and all adult resort and even though there were kids here they were never overwhelming, loud or running amok.
Now the not so great things: The alcohol in the rooms and bars, the bottle butler has a bottle of Jose Cuervo and the Husband swears it isn’t the real deal. He drank a couple of shots and then had a couple more in the bar... Started calling it Joe Carter Tequila and switched to Dos XX.
We had dinner in 3 of the specialty restaurants, Krystal (by far the best, I had the filet, Husband had lamb) Mexican ( so so, the soup is great!) and the Brazilian (this is the reason we canceled the rest of the reservations for the week at the Steak House and Japanese place) the Brazilian place is a joke. Salad bar and then they bring out 4 waffle fries, 6 broccoli florets, a bit of polenta and 2 bacon wrapped bananas and you can get more of these if you like. Then comes the meat... they come by and begrudging slice off a ½ ounce of meat and put it on your plate. I felt like a homeless person at a soup kitchen being served a morsel of food each time they came by. 5 maybe 6 different times, no seconds on the meat. Some you wouldn’t want to anyway... Also the 6:30 and the 8:45 dinner seating. We felt like a herd of cattle when it came time to be seated, I would suggest maybe less people and more times, instead of 40 people at each time maybe 15 every hour, I don’t know but it isn’t working well the way it is.
We had a great time, and it was the first time we stayed at a RIU property, but I am not sure we would return because we just didn’t like the fake alcohol and the cattle like seating times for dinner.

Room Tip: Do not get 2020 on the side facing the Wyndham Resort. Face the Reef Resort if you can.
  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank Nikons2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2013

Stayed here in December2012 . previous reviews did not disappoint. Service excellent and attention to detail was second to none. Food fantastic. Would thoroughly recommend this hotel. Only downside was the occasional canadians&americans that cannot handle drinking. Worth every penny would go back in a heartbeat

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank deec1258
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya

Address: Av Xaman-Ha Mza 9 y 10 Lote 1 Int.Fracc. | Fase II 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 High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#23 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#29 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#31 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#32 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: £190 - £446 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya 4*
Number of rooms: 400
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* The hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya is located directly on the white, sandy beach of the Playacar residential estate, along with the Riu Palace Mexico, Playacar, Riu Yucatan and the ClubHotel Riu Tequila hotels. The 400 spacious and elegant junior suites are set in the 3-storey main building, with its delightful architectural style and surrounded by extensive tropical gardens. * Next Village / Location Playa del Carmen 2.0 km approx. * Next City Cancún 60.0 km approx. * Airport Cancún International Airport (CUN) 55.0 km approx. * Main Building 3 floors 400 rooms * Accepted Credit Cards: MasterCard, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Riviera Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Riu Riviera Maya
Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya Mexico - Playa Del Carmen

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