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“Mexico newbies”
Review of Hotel Riu Santa Fe

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Hotel Riu Santa Fe
Ranked #41 of 70 Hotels in Cabo San Lucas
Penticton, Canada
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Mexico newbies”
Reviewed 28 March 2012

March 12th to 19th. After chaos at the airport with 4 or 5 flights landing at the same time, fighting our way through the timeshare people (DO NOT STOP) to get outside, finding our transportation had left without us (our fault it took 2 hours to get through customs???), paying $80 US for a taxi 'flight' to our resort, we arrived at the Riu Santa Fe and were warmly greeted, shown to the check-in counter (smooth process),furnished with a margarita, and helped to our room in building 4. Many thanks to the staff at the Rui who unknowingly salvaged our holidays within minutes, after our a horrific start.
ROOM - Building 4 was the perfect location for us. It was central to the lobby/main buffet/WiFi/main stage, and to building 7 and the ocean. The backside (west facing) room allowed us a quiet escape when wanted and beautiful sunsets to enjoy from our patio. Not once were we awakened by late night partiers. The room was clean, bathroom supplied (bring your own shampoo/conditioner if you don't care for foil packs), the bar stocked, and the fridge was fully stocked (including many bottles of water). The bed was rather firm/hard, but slept surprisingly well on it. Had to ordered a few more pillows for the bed (only 3 small ones for a king bed) which arrived in short order.
FOOD - The buffets offered more than enough options to satisfy most. Considering the volume of food that had to be made, presented and maintained it was surprisingly good. Some items were not as good, so next time we opted for something else. Tried the a la carte dinners, but really preferred the buffet and the variety. Of the a la carte the Asian was the best, but it too incorporated buffet style dining.
BEVERAGES - The coffee was best if you used the self serve brew machines. Drinks were free flowing and decent. Probably diluted, but still alright. If you want to enhance the margarita ask for a different tequilla brand or for an extra shot in your drink.
POOLS - The pools at building 7 (infinity pool) were beautiful. The view was incredible, looking out to the very tip of the Baja and lover's beach. The water in these pools was cold. The deckside was loud (if you were looking to have quiet time to read etc.), but full of activities put on by the Rui staff. Be prepared to be an early riser if you want a lounger and to be in a prime location. The other pool was pleasantly warm, had a swim up bar too, relatively quiet, awesome 'huts' for shade, and also had its' share of activities. Again, you had to be alert to get the loungers here too. When it looked as if we were too late to get a seat, we would watch loungers that were not in use, and after a while moved in, knowing that if the original occupants showed up we would be more than willing to vacate. Never did we have to vacate, and left the chairs and towels as we found them (no one seemed to be the wiser or put out).
PRICE - We purchased this all-inclusive at an unbelievable price (less than $90ppn) on sale. These packages do come on sale, so do some research. Be sure to have $US dollars on hand. Prices for excursions, souveniers, and other things are better in $US than Pesos, and it is difficult to find/get $US there. We were also armed with $1's for tipping. Even though it was all-inclusive, we found the staff were fantastic and deserved recognition for what they did.
It is a large resort, and if mobility is an issue, and you want 'personlaized service", perhaps consider a smaller resort. We thouroughly enjoyed our experience at the Riu Santa Fe, with the happy and helpful staff making up far any shortfalls if there were any. Having never tried an all-inclusive before, we did not know what to expect, but feel expectations were more than met.

Room Tip: Building 4 = central, quiet, close to the gym and smaller warmer pool, West Facing = quiet time, e...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
6 Thank GreatDane67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Prairies
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

I just got home from a week at the Riu Santa Fe. I absolutely loved the stay, and would go back today if I could. The resort is wonderful. The staff are amazing, the grounds are well maintained, the rooms are clean and well appointed.

My husband and I, along with 8 of our closest friends (4 couples), had a great week at the Santa Fe and in Cabo San Lucas. There is a lot to do and see in the area. We went into Cabo several times and had great adventures. We went whale watching on the Cabo Blue. It was awesome! Four went quadding and had a blast. Six of us took a traditional mexican cooking class with Donna at Casa de Colores. She is a wonderful lady, and we had a lot of fun learning from her. We ate dinner one evening at Maro's Shrimp House. Food was delicious, and I loved the atmosphere.

The food at the resort was good and very abundant. There was so much to choose from...almost too much choice. We only ate at one of the a la cartes, the steak house, and it was delicious. The waiters and waitresses are very attentive.

The rooms are really nice. They are very clean, and it seemed that they were cleaning the buildings all the time. It was common to see the staff sweeping and mopping the hallways. We would go for breakfast, and come back to a cleaned room. We were very well taken care of.

The beach and the pools are nice. Loved sitting by the pools, soaking up the sun. The view by the beach is amazing. Finding beach/pool loungers is kind of a pain, but we could always find them. A lot of them are "claimed" early in the morning, but we always seemed to find some and move them to where we wanted to be.

I definitely highly recommend this resort. I'd go back without hesitation.

The airport was extremely busy. 7 planes landed at once and that was sort of a nightmare getting luggage and getting through security. Be patient, and be prepared for a lot of pushing from people trying to get thru faster.

Another thing I recommend is to make sure that you look at and have someone else double check the expiration date on your passport. Make sure it is valid, and make sure it does not expire until after you get home. One couple in our group had a lot of stress at the beginning of the trip.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank daissyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

The hotel was beautiful but do not let that fool you. The food is awful. Reservations must be made for the non-buffet meals and you can only make 1 per day and are often on a waiting list...which by the way I would spend the money and go down town and eat unless you like food that all taste the same. There are also a lot of teenagers that are served alcohol, who knows if they are even 18 years old. They end up drunk, lound, and annoying. FIghts break out and it is NOT relaxing to say the least. In your room you get 3 or 4 television stations that are in English the rest are in spanish. Patio doors cannot be left open because the misquotes are horrible. Thus we could not enjoy our Ocean Front Suite, that we paid extra for.
We will not go back to a RIU ever. I would however return to Cabo, just not here. My husband and I were looking for a romantic relaxing getaway...That could not be found here.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank Erica W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Deer Park, WI
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 28 March 2012

At first I thought maybe the place was to big for me but once we got use to the lay out it wasn't. Beautifully landscaped ground, very clean and friendly staff. Enough pools that one pool was never to crowed and plenty of chairs for sunbathing. Food was one of the better buffets that I have eaten at and the Steak House (Torte) was amazing food! Nightly entertainment was good as well. My only complaint ( it was one that I had read about often) is that we upgraded to a ocean view room, we were stuck in a corner and the ONLY way we could see the ocean is if we leaned over our balcony. We did ask the front desk about this and we were told this was considered and ocean view, building seven (which we were in) for the most part is considered ocean view and are closer to the ocean then any other building but I am used to sitting on balcony and actually seeing the ocean. Whale watching was amazing!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Cheryl M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

This was that second time to this resort and i enjoyed it as much as the first time.It's in a good location easy to get into town, with plenty of bars and great places to eat. The beach can be rough at times, but the pools make up for it. love RIU and will be going back.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank t0r0nt01449
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
Level Contributor
110 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

I had never experienced an all-inclusive resort nor had I ever stayed at a resort in Mexico. Needless to say I had low expectations. I was very pleasantly surprised by how beautiful this resort is. Upon check-in we were greeted with beverages in the lobby filled with tranquil fountains. The staff all spoke very good English and were genuinely helpful. Our room was tastefully decorated, not too small, and had a mini-fridge fully of soda and beer (Dos Equis, my fav!). I don't know when the resort was built, but the room was in very good shape and seemed like it was fairly new.

The bartenders were prompt and willing to make anything you want. We spent a lot of time at the pools by the beach and the service was great. You can even request better liquors (Smirnoff) if you don't want drinks made with the local rot-gut.

The funny thing is, I never actually ate anywhere except at the buffets near the pools. The restaurants were difficult to get into (reservations required, and they only let you make them on the day of). This didn't really matter for us since we ended up napping through meal times anyways. We did get a bit sick of the food, but this could be because we almost always ate the same couple of buffets every day.

The Santa Fe is conveniently located about a mile up the beach from the "fun" party spots (Mango Deck, Nikki Beach, etc). It's a bit far to walk, but there are many water taxis that will take you. It's also quite close to town so if you're wanting to shop, eat, or hit the clubs, it will cost about $3 per person to take a cab.

The central bars were hopping in the evenings, but the on-site nightclub was disappointing. If you're the clubbing type, you'll definitely want to head into town and mingle at Squid Roe or Pink Kitty.

All in all, I was quite impressed and would definitely come again.

Pros: Good price, good service, good drinks, good location, beautiful resort
Cons: Reservations are difficult, food is hit and miss, nightclub is so-so

Room Tip: 3rd (top) floor rooms are quietest, but most buildings don't have elevators
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank SLC-Sammy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
vancouver
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

I had no problems with the actual hotel but the location on the beach was not great. Dangerous fast powerful waves. Good strong swimmer or not, that's not my idea of a peaceful holiday! The food seemed fresh and well presented but not the greatest. Overall resort and value ok.

  • Stayed April 2011
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank georgia-ann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Santa Fe

Property: Hotel Riu Santa Fe
Address: Camino Viejo a San Jose | Cabo San Lucas, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > Cabo San Lucas
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 Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#22 Top resorts Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#27 Spa Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#31 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#31 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Santa Fe 3.5*
Number of rooms: 902
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located in the southern Baja California peninsula, 4.5 Km/2.8 Miles from Cabo San Lucas * Opened winter 2007/8 * 1-story main building and 3-story and 4-story annexes * On the beachfront * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 3.5 Km/2.2 Miles from downtown Cabo San Lucas * 40 km/25 miles from the airport * 500 m/1650 ft from a bus stop ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas
Riu Santa Fe Los Cabos
Riu Sante Fe
Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos, Mexico

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