We chose this hotel for a few reasons: location outside of central Cancun to avoid the spring break craziness, because it was all-inclusive, and because it seemed family friendly (we have three kids, ages 12, 13, and 15). The reviews here were generally positive, and I think that if we had gone outside of spring break week it might be that I would be writing a glowing review as well.
Here is what we encountered: large groups of kids, travelling with parental supervision, going completely wild. The 12 year old had a bucket of ice dropped on his head from a second story landing. We found a used condom in the middle of one of the main walkways. The two boys next door to us got into a drunken screaming fight with either each other or other guests three nights in a row (yes, we called security and no, no one ever showed up. Once they did not ever answer the "emergency" phone line). Parents shouting at their children from balconies at midnight. Drunk teens sitting with their equally drunk parents.
The point is - I would recommend this hotel, but not during spring break. It seems it has been discovered and that the rules regarding check in age have been circumvented by well meaning but not practical parents.
If you wish a connecting room, good luck. They don't exist. The service staff was spotty at best - some went well out of their way to make your trip a pleasant one, others just didn't care at all. Overall, the level of service was far below what we have experienced in other RM hotels, with and without children.
It took us three days to get a rollaway bed for one of our rooms. Each day I was told it was on the way to the room. When it didn't show up for a couple of hours, I would go back to the front desk only to be told they didn't have one. One of our children slept on the tiny couch in the room for three days. This is not world class hotel service.
If you stay here, make sure you turn OFF the alarm on the clock in the room as soon as you arrive. They seem to all be set to go off at midnight. Up and down the hallway, you heard the buzz of alarms at midnight. And on the time front, if you are there over a time change (ahead or back and hour), they will not tell you. We almost missed our flight home due to such a change. It was an hour later than we thought it was, as the clocks changed on Sunday night and we were leaving Monday morning. Not one staff member told us about this.
There are activities but they are fairly free form and this place did not put out a daily activity schedule as most do.
Restaurants are okay - buffet is actually quite good, and the Japanese restaurant was our favorite hands down. Brazilian is disgustingly bad. Steakhouse okay. You may reserve three nights ahead between 12 -3 in the lobby. Go early and get in line. We were shut out for two nights even with planning for this as soon as we arrived.
So go - with caution.
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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