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“A Great Place, didn't want to leave”

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Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
Ranked #3 of 17 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Winnipeg, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A Great Place, didn't want to leave”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 February 2013

We enjoyed a wonderful week with a few friends and an awesome staff. Although we were booked at the Spa side, we were switched to the Cove to better accommodate our wheelchair needs and could not have been happier.
The Cove Palace is exactly that, a palace with beautiful rooms and a service level that was the best we have ever received. The front desk people were very kind and helpful, thank you Alexandra for your extra efforts and eagerness to please. The team of bell boys were so impressive with their dedication to service and fun to be with. Especially Martin, Julio, Alexander and Dexter. We will remember you all for a long time.
We should also applaud the room service that was fast and friendly no matter what time they were called, complete with a follow up call to ensure we were pleased with their efforts, a first for us.
Our only disappointment was leaving but would return in a heart beat and perhaps stay a lot longer.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Carl C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alejandro M, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 6 March 2013
Hello Carl C, thank you for your sweet review, we are very delighted hearing that you had a wonderful time and didn’t want to leave. We want to thank you for mentioning so many of our collaborators; we will share your comments with them and we know they will appreciate them. Thank you again and we look forward to welcome you very soon here at Aventura Cove Palace.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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nj
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 February 2013 via mobile

I am writing this review from the Cove pool. Here are the pros and cons as I see them:
1. Check-in was horrible with a 2 hour wait for our room with a 2 year old in tow.
2. Spa services? Haven't had any yet... They were almost completely booked when we arrived. We will be having a couples massage tomorrow on our last day here ( certainly not our first choice). We leave resort credits behind that we couldn't use at the spa!
3. Today we scheduled photos of our grandchildren at 9:30 am. When we arrived, they told us that they were overbooked and we would have no wait 45 minutes to an hour! No apologies. They simply took a group of adults ahead of us.
4. The hard sell for the new Hard Rock was very hard! While they were trying to sell us a $200,000 package, I asked them if we could get kids shampoo and robes. We were told that they are not available in the Presidential Suite, only the family suite. Go figure.

The pros:
The waiters, bartenders, cleaning crew, etc are hard working, accommodating and wonderful! Their bosses should take a lesson from them!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank teanecktraveler22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alejandro M, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 6 March 2013
HI teanecktraveler22, we thank you for your comments and feedback as they give us te opportunity to address your concerns.
We regret hearing that your check-in was longer than usual, we always try to provide a great and fast check-in to our guests as we know that after a long trip all you want is to go to your rooms and relax as you finally are in your get away relaxing spot and for this we apologize.
About your inconveniences making your spa bookings, many of our visitors make their reservations prior to their arrival to save time during their vacations and that is why we encourage our guests to book their activities in advance through our Vacation Planners and telemarketing teams, they will be happy to help you out making your reservations for the spa, golf, beauty salon, special dinners, tequila and wine tastings, tours, activities and excursions.
Regarding the amenities in the room categories you mention, indeed there are some of them that are particular to its category like the Family Suite, but we always try to pleas e our valued members and we are sure this can be worked out by our staff to make every stay an unforgettable one. And your feedback was passed to our Management team for revision; we want to thank you for your nice comments about our staff they surely will appreciate them.
We look forward to welcome you again at Aventura Cove Palace.
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CT
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 February 2013

After reading all of the negative reviews my wife and children, 16 and 17, were a little concerned about our trip to Aventura Cove Palace. Well, all I can say is we had an AWESOME time and did not want to leave. We were treated like royalty from the time we arrived until our departure. The staff was fantastic, especially Jay and crew from the pool, and our favorite bartendar Eduardo. A lot of people complained about not being able to use the resort credits but we had no problem what so ever using them and scheduling all of our activities. This was one of the first times my family and I hated leaving our vacation. We look forward to coming back and staying at the Aventura Cove Palace.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Eric G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alejandro M, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 6 March 2013
Hello Eric G, thank you for your sweet review, we are very pleased to hear that your family had an awesome time and didn’t want to leave. It is encouraging to hear your comments as we are always working hard to ensure we deliver excellent service and unforgettable vacations to our valued guests. We also look forward to welcome you again very soon here at Aventura Cove Palace.
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1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 February 2013 via mobile

Well my wife 7 month old son and I are currently staying here. The service food and people are great. The rooms are top notch. The birds wake you up not the carts in the morning. We are here feb 20-27. We haven't done it or seen it all yet. We have used all our resort credits and was easy to book. I hate stress and haven't had any yet. We will update our review as we go. Well kept resort room service is great. The noise level outside is minimal as that was a concern traveling with our child. Hope you enjoy your stay if you come here and if you want to know anything just ask as so many people have negative things to say I hope I can take that thought away.

Stuart Rhonda and little Owen

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank 780hillbilly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alejandro M, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 6 March 2013
Hi 780hillbilly, thank you very much for your nice review, we are very pleased to hear that you are having a wonderful time at our beautiful resort, relaxing in our stress free atmosphere.
We appreciate your comments and hope as well that many future visitors find them useful and choose Aventura Cove Palace for their next vacations in the Riviera Maya.
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Victoria, BC.
Level Contributor
38 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 February 2013

We just returned from our weeklong visit to the Adventura Cove Palace that took place between Feb. 5-12, 2013. We travelled with 5 adults and 3 children that were ages 5, 6 & 7. This is our 3rd all-inclusive on the Mayan Riviera and the 6th for us overall.
We departed from Vancouver to Cancun via Sunwing vacations – about a 5 hour flight. The flight was good and included champagne and breakfast (choice of French toast or omelette). The bus from the Cancun airport to the hotel takes 2 hours to get to the hotel – a long time after an early morning flight when you have 3 children under 7 years old. It was 7:00pm by the time we arrived at the hotel. Arrival at the hotel was easy and we managed to be completely checked in and taken to our rooms within about 20-25 minutes. They accommodated us by putting our 3 parties in rooms next to each other. Also, no wrist bands, except for the kids who thought they were really cool bracelets.
From this point on I thought it best to break things down separately but bear with me while I just mention one thing. On the morning after we arrived we were told we had to meet the Sunwing representatives to find out about the time our bus would be taking us home on the last day to take us back to the airport. We arrived a few minutes early and there was a representative there who told us we had to go to a quick orientation. We just wanted to find out our bus pick up time so we asked the gentleman if we had to go to the presentation to find out about the bus and he told us yes we did. I mentioned that we had 3 young children that were really anxious to get out to see the resort and pools and he told us it would only take 10 minutes of our time. So we grabbed the gang and headed up to the disco where they were situated. It took about another 10-15 minutes for them to get started and when they eventually did, the presentation lasted about 45 minutes long. The Sunwing rep was there just trying to sell their own excursion packages for the majority of the time. It was ridiculous and eventually we just walked out. I was furious as I really felt that they weren’t being honest with us and made us sit through an incredibly long and drawn out presentation just so they could try to sell us something. But, the real kicker was that they didn’t even give us the bus pick up time. So to save many of you this pain and hassle here’s the deal – the day before you have to go home, go up to the Sunwing desk up by the disco and there will be a binder on the desk with all the bus departure times. Just look it up and you’re good to go. Wait until about after 3:00pm, otherwise they won’t have the info yet. The rule of thumb is that they leave the hotel 4.5 hours before your flight leaves.
Rooms:
The rooms are lovely. They are pretty large with 2 double beds and a huge Jacuzzi (and I mean huge – it takes up about 25% of the room). There’s a small fridge stocked with all kinds of soft drinks, juice and beer. There was also a bottle of red wine on the table when we arrived and if you didn’t already have enough alcohol in your room, there was a free pour alcohol dispenser as well with vodka, rum ,tequila and more. I was told that if you preferred another sort of alcohol they would remove a bottle and swap it out for one of your choice. The toilet and shower were in one room and the sink was just outside. The shower was huge as well with a little sitting area and lots of room for your bathing products. The sink area outside was nice with a huge lighted makeup mirror and hairdryer. I also wanted to mention that there were tons of electrical sockets which is nice, often we don’t have enough for our electronics. There was a lovely deck with a hammock and all the rooms have views of the ocean. My one disappointment with the room was that there were only 2 drawers in our entire room. I really felt that while the room was large, there really wasn’t a lot of storage space. We are a family of 3 and it was really hard to find room for everyone’s stuff – a lot of stuff had to be left out on tables, above the bed, etc. I certainly wouldn’t have wanted to have any more people to share the room with. The beds were slightly on the hard side but it didn’t bother us at all. There was free calling to Canada or the US anytime from our rooms. Finally, the room cleaning was hit and miss most - days they came but there were a couple where our room wasn’t cleaned. Some days we had turn down service, others we didn’t. Also, after 6 days, our sheets hadn’t been cleaned at all – and they really needed a clean by then so we just stripped the beds ourselves and left the sheets on the ground and by lunch time they had fresh new sheets back on the bed.
Pool/Beach:
The pools are great. I read in other posts that they were cold but I’m not sure I agree with that. They are cool for the first moment but then once you’re in they are wonderful. We stayed in the water for long periods of time and never felt cold. The pools are pretty shallow for the most parts but there are some areas that are a little bit deeper that we tried to keep the kids away from. There’s a swim up bar area too. Water aerobics, volleyball and entertaining games every day. There was music playing but it wasn’t overly loud and you could move to other areas where you couldn’t hear the music if it bothered you. There was poolside service that would come around to take drink orders regularly. The hotel is diligent at keeping the pool clean; almost any time of day, every day you would see someone cleaning some area of the pool. We didn’t really have trouble finding chairs but I always saw towels on chairs as I was going to breakfast at 8:00am. I think the hardest thing was just trying to find some shady spots. There aren’t many palapas. It would be nice to have a few more shaded spots, especially for the kids.
The beach of course isn’t a real beach but a cove area. There is no sand but rather a sort of fine white gravel. We knew that before coming to the resort so it wasn’t a shock but there was really no huge draw to hang out on the beach either. We went snorkeling in the cove one day and there are lots of fish that are swimming around. Bring some bread with you and they’ll practically knock you over to get some crumbs. Apparently the workers said that sometimes there are sting rays and eels but we didn’t see any.
Food:
Overall we thought the food was really good, especially the breakfast buffet – OMG, so good. We tried all A la Carte restaurants except the Mexican one on the spa side. They were all pretty good but our best meal was at the Mexican restaurant, La Hacienda– that meal was amazing. The Italian and Oriental were pretty good too. I wasn’t thrilled with the Steak house (but I had ribs) but most of the other people in our group thought it was ok. My husband thought the steaks throughout the resort were better than other Mexican resorts we’ve stayed at. Service was great everywhere we went. One thing I really like about this resort is that you didn’t have to make reservations for the restaurants and you could go as many times as you wanted. One night I ordered room service into my room at about 9:00pm and it took about 7-10 minutes to arrive and was hot and delicious.
Entertainment:
Well, I’ve seen much better and I’ve seen worse. Some shows were really quite good, other’s not so good. The best show’s I saw were the fire show and the Brazilian salsa show. I didn’t go to the break dance show but I heard it was pretty good too. The Magic show, Mexican Fiesta and Michael Jackson were average.
Kids Club:
We thought it was great. The kids club building is so bright, clean and fun. What a wonderful venue they have for kids. I agree that it probably isn’t great for children over 8 years old – mostly geared for younger children. At 6:00pm they take the kids over to the buffet for dinner and then they bring them back to the kids club for a movie night. Our girls loved going there and it was perfect for us because all the adults would get dressed up and have relaxing dinners on the adult only side; our kids would have happily done this every night if we let them. The young ladies (and one gentleman one evening) who look after the kids are wonderful and we always felt very comfortable leaving our children in their care. In the afternoon they often had character visits from Angelina Ballerina, Thomas the Train, Bob the Builder or Barney.
Resort Credits:
The resort credits were really good. There were five different day trips you could go on, swimming with the dolphins, spa treatments, tequila tasting special dinners and more. You did have to pay 11% tax when you checkout for the credits you use but it is clearly worth it. Signing up for things to do with the credits was really easy and never did we wait in line to set up our trips or appointments (go 24 hours before). We did the trip to Tulum (3 people), swimming with the dolphins (3 people) as well as 80 minute relaxing massages at the spa (2 adults) and all that worked out to about 1000 credits. I would have done more but we ran out of time. If you go to Tulum don’t forget to wear your bathing suit as there’s an incredible beach to swim at there. Swimming with the dolphins was amazing and something I would have never paid for on my own so I was thrilled we could use the credits for this – be prepared though if you want photos, they are $70 to start for one photo. You only had to pay $8 for the taxi to the dolphin place. The spa treatment was wonderful and we took advantage of the hydro therapy room, I wish we actually had gone there a little earlier. The spa itself is an absolutely amazing facility with a massive staff; they ran quite an operation.
Staff:
We found each and every member of the staff to be hard working, courteous and thankful. We always tried our best to speak what small amount of Spanish we knew and the staff was always appreciative (including our 6 year old daughter who asked for” té con leche frio” by herself every morning). The minimum wage in this part of Mexico is about $5 a day… yes, I said DAY! These people work so hard, please remember to tip everyone if you can afford to do so – including the cooks, gardeners, cleaners, pool guys, etc. They never ask or hint for tips ever. Your money helps their families tremendously.
Construction:
I know many people are probably wondering about the construction that is going on. The only construction that saw was in the one building on the farthest south side of the resort. That building was completely gutted and there were construction workers working on it every day. That being said, that’s the area of the pool that we stayed around most days and we heard very little construction noise. Only from time to time would you hear hammers or drills and if you did it wasn’t particularly bothersome. On our last day there they brought in a small excavator to do work on an outdoor area that looks like it may be turning into another pool but even that wasn’t very loud. They have 2 model suites that show what the new hotel rooms will look like eventually and it’s open to the public. We went and checked them out and they were beautiful. Looks like the hotel will be getting quite a makeover.
Overall:
This resort was wonderful and we wouldn’t hesitate to go back. We really liked the size of the resort. Not too big (we’ve stayed at a few that were much larger) and not too small. Everywhere on the resort was easy to walk to, even for the kids. I don’t really have anything negative to say about the resort at all. The "grounds" are well cared for but not spectacular like other resorts. If I were to rate the hotel I would rate it 4 out of 5 but simply because it isn’t as extravagant or have as many restaurant or entertainment options as some of the other resorts we’ve stayed at. You really get your bang for your buck at this resort – especially with the resort credits. Overall, it’s a great 4-star resort for adults and kids alike.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank TeamPasta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alejandro M, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 5 March 2013
Hola Canadian_Bride_to_be, we would like to thank you for your excellent and detailed review about our resort, certainly we enjoyed reading that you loved your accommodations and the all amenities like the mini-bar, liquor dispenser with premium brands, double Jacuzzi, 24-hour room service, etc. regarding the drawers and storage space, we took all of our dear guests comments in consideration and this has been addressed and as you mentioned we have two new model suites open for our guests to see what the new rooms lay out will look like and you will definitely have more storage space for all the family.
What to say about our facilities and the pools, it is simply delightful to learn that you enjoyed them and that you noticed that our hard working staff is always looking after their areas to maintain and preserve our facilities immaculate for our valued guests and even for the little ones in their own spot at the Kids Club with all the great activities we have for them.
Thank you again for your excellent review, and for the wonderful pictures we know many future visitors will find them helpful when looking for a great family vacation venue in the Riviera Maya. We look forward to welcome you again here at Aventura Cove Palace.
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Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
24 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 February 2013

We stayed at Aventura Cove Palace Jan 27-Feb 3, 2013. We traveled with our kids, age 3 and 6. We had stayed here once before in 2004 when it was all Aventura Spa Palace and adults only. We had been treated so well before we decided to see how it was changed to a family resort. Once again, we had a fantastic time!


The good:

- Check-in was super easy. The bellmen, front desk and concierge all greeted us warmly and made us feel welcome. We were given a ride on a golf cart to our room in the Accordion building (very close to the kids club and Mundaca's).

- Our room was always fully stocked - the fridge was stocked early in the day, our room was cleaned and new shampoo, soap, towels were ready before lunch. At bedtime, turn down service always gave us plenty of chocolate.

- The staff was so friendly! Everyone we met greeted us nicely, and seemed to get a huge kick out of our kids trying to speak to them in Spanish. I really couldn't get over how happy and helpful they all were.

- Service was amazing. Anywhere we were in the resort, there was always someone with a smile asking if we'd like something to drink, and it almost always came quickly!

- The resort was well kept and clean. Everywhere from the lobby area, the rooms, the restaurants, pools, kids club - immaculate. The resort also has WiFi and free calling to Canada from your room!

- Food was great and plentiful! I've got picky eaters, and there were always choices that they would eat. Other reviews made me wary of the food, but it was never a concern. Our kids aren't the greatest at restaurants, so we stuck mainly to the buffets and an a la carte at Mundaca's, as well as the Sweets counter and the pool side bar. No reservations needed for a la cartes. Room service comes quickly!

- Kids club. Staff were so good with all the kids. Even after only meeting them for a few minutes at a time, they remembered their names and made them feel welcome. They were fun, enthusiastic and seemed to love working with kids! Definitely do the Saturday night show - it's a 45 min show with all the characters - Barney, Angelina Ballerina, Bob the Builder and Thomas. The daily events are at 4pm, and only about 15 min.

- Kiddie pool. It's only about a foot or so deep, and it's a small structure, but great for my 3 year old. He played in that pool for hours.

- Nightly entertainment - We especially liked the Mexican Fiesta!

- No ugly wrist bands that some resorts make you wear.

- Construction - although we were told there was construction going on for renos to become the Hard Rock, we never heard it, nor noticed any of it.

- It's not a huge resort. Since we had kids with us, we mostly stuck to the Cove side. Everywhere is easily walkable, even for our kids.


The not so good (if I have to be really, really picky):

- It's about an hour from the airport. Felt like a long ride after the flight from Toronto, but I've heard of others having to go further.

- We had forgotten how small the rooms are. For a couple on a honeymoon, it was fine. Now that we have two kids and considerably more luggage, it felt a little cramped. The huge jacuzzi does take up a lot of space, but the kids loved having baths in it!

- The pools felt cold. We were there during a not-so-hot week, weather wise, and I'm sure that made the difference. It was still fine to swim in the pools, just took a few more minutes than usual to get used to the temperature. The cove was warmer.

- The cove is not a beach. Obviously, we knew this from going before. Still okay, as long as you know what you're getting into. Definitely bring water shoes, as the bottom of the cove has some sharp rocks/shells. I got a small cut on my foot. The kids were fine in their water shoes and flippers.

- Food at the pool side bar takes a long time. Don't order from a server, just walk up to the grill where the food is being prepared and serve yourself. Same with the frozen drinks - it's quicker to pour your own. These servers serve the entire pool area, cove area and the bar, so that's why it takes longer.

- The $1500 credit. You still have to pay the 11% on whatever you use it for. Our Sunwing agent recommended to use it for spa services, the special dinners or the tequila tasting, rather than excursions. We were mostly interested in excursions and jewelry. We didn't even come close to using it all up. Using it for the jewelry store was confusing, and they didn't even ask for the credit, but I still got a good deal. We used the credit for the Tulum tour, and the beach club. The Tulum tour guide could use some help with manners, but that's not the resort's employee. The credit is not applicable toward the more well-known parks - Xelha, Xcaret, Xplor. On a positive note, we heard it would be difficult to access the vacation planners, but they were always available within a couple of minutes whenever we needed them.

- The games room / teen room - didn't have much in the way of their arcade. Two machines weren't working properly when we were there.

- Sunscreen is $20 USD a bottle. (Silly us for not bringing enough :( )


I would absolutely recommend this resort for a family with young children, assuming you are okay with not having an actual beach. My biggest concern is always service - and the service here was excellent! Happy, friendly, extremely helpful staff! Book early though, as we noticed the price went up significantly as the trip got closer.

Room Tip: Accordion building is close to the kids club. We had a regular suite and found it a little small for...
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank J N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Penelope S, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 20 February 2013
Hi J N, thanks you very much for your comments.

We are very glad to know that we provided you with an excellent service and that we exceeded your expectations.

We always take care of our customer needs, that is why, we provide you all the amenities and services into your room and around our resort areas. It’s good to know that you enjoyed our friendly and warm service which is our characteristic.

Our entertainment team work hard innovating activities to enjoy our facilities, if you come to the cove side is to enjoy a familiar vacation; in our kids club we offer to our little guests special shows and activities to get their own wonderful experience.

Remember that resort credits is an extra bonus, is noteworthy to mention that you don’t pay any additional charge to get it, but you can take advantage going to excursions, spa treatments and buy jewelry. We will share your comments concerning the pool bar to take the corresponding actions to avoid this occur in the future.

Once again we appreciate your comments and we hope to see you again in our resort.
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Woodstock
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 February 2013

My husband and I as well as another couple stayed Feb 8th - Feb 15th.
This has been by far the best resort we have picked yet!
We are excited to see what changes Hard Rock will make and look forward to returning.
Our trip started off on the wrong foot. The day of our departure the weather was calling for a bad snow storm in Toronto. We had an early flight and heard of the weather so we booked a room at the Holiday Inn across the road from the airport and stayed over the night before. Our 10:30am flight boarded at 11:30am but because we had to wait in line for deicing we didn't take off until 5:30pm. Given that we hadn't eaten before boarding we were very hungery. I'm sure because of this many will be upset with Sunwing and find a way to blame the weather on them. I would like to say thank you to the team of flight attendants that kept the passangers calm during our wait. There were many children on board who were quiet the whole time, it was the older people around us that constantly complained. It took a lot of restraint from my husband and I to not say something to them.

I am always surprised by the people who don't do any research on their destination. An example was a group of people I met on our bus going to the same hotel as us, they didn't know that the Cove side was meant for all ages and Spa was adult only, they didn't know that they had access to the whole resort. Maybe I go overboard researching but we even e-mailed ahead and booked our day trips. The first day we were there we booked our spa appointments and got the choice of time for the day we picked.

Our arrival to the hotel was smooth and without problems. Upon arrival we were surprised that the hotel doesn't have wrist bands for guests, they did for kids under 18 or for Palace Members. We put in a request to be close to the spa side so we could be in the middle of the resort and they did exactly that. We were on a ground floor room in the oboe section. We overlooked the labrith and the ocean. The bell hop took us to our room and made sure we had everything we needed. Because it was a late arrival we ordered room service as no restaurants are open after 11. Our food arrived within 20 min, hot and exactly what we ordered. I went looking for the ice machine for drinks as all rooms have liquor dispensors and beer. As I was wondering the halls one of the bell boys stopped their cart, got out, asked if I needed ice, took the bucket from me, asked me to wait, went running up the stairs and filled the bucket with ice and returned it to me. Now if that's not serice I don't know what is! Needless to say, all ice machines are on the second floor:)
Our rooms were cleaned between 12 and 4 most days, there was the Thurs where they had a lot of guests coming and going and we had a message that house keeping would be in around 5 and they were there at 4:30, we were already back in our room so we just accepted fresh towels.
The turn down sservice is nice, they would dim the lights, close the curtains, pull back the sheets and turn on the radio:)
Our safe was digital and had no concerns with using it. House keeping did leave the patio door unlocked one day by accident so we made sure to keep all valubles locked up.

Everything you hear about the chair saving is unfortunately true. I was up at 7 and all chairs around the adult pool were taken. However...you can get a chair around the cove pool any time of day, sun or shade! Both the cove and the spa have swim up bars, the cove side has stools but the spa does not. If your at the cove bar say "Hi" to Aldo, he also does the Tequila Tasting at the Hotel on Sat so he knows his drinks!
The pool was being cleaned often but the sun screen can make the stairs slippery so please be careful. They have both local and domestic drinks and they can make anything you request, but if your up for some fun just say "surprise me." Many people brought their own travel mugs and we did too but we found that the service was so fast that we didn't have to worry about waiting for drinks or the ice melting. In most cases the waiter would bring your next round before your glass was empty and they would remember what you ordered from day to day. They serve drinks anywhere at the pool or beach, you don't have to be a member or VIP.

For us the food was great, I used my credits for lobster at the Mundaca restaurant so I got surf and turf. I got 2 lobster tails, it was considered 1 piece and was 53 dollars/points so I paid $5. Remember that you pay 11% of the bill, so as a Canadian we saw it like paying the tax on a free item. The waiter was fantasitc, he made us flowers from paper and played a great trick on our friend. They make sure all glasses are topped up, they pull out chairs, place napkins on your lap, remove dishes as soon as your fork is set down, amazing service. I simply can't imagine why people complain about the service, maybe it's because their so miserable that the staff avoid them?
My favourite meal was the Hacienda, the Mexican restaurant in the Cove side. We decided to hand our menu back to Cesar and asked them to bring us their best dishes. After all, we wanted to experience mexican flavours in Mexico and they know the menu best. He asked if we liked spicey foods or sea food and made the choices for us. I had the tequila lime shrimp, fantastic. Even if your full, say yes to coffee after your meal, you won't regret it, the show they put on to make it and pour it!
My husbands favourite was the La Trattoria, the italian restaurant on the Spa side. It was Vanentines day and they gave a rose to each of the women at the restaurant. He had the veal and bacon risotto, we also used our credits to buy a couple bottles of wine for the table. A fantastic meal to end the week.
Mo Mo No Hana was good but they were quite busy. We requested the sushi roll but were told it would have to come after the main course, we never did get it but we were so full that we didn't miss it.
The buffet in the cove side for breakfast was great, I had something different every morning. They make waffles, poached eggs on toast baked in the oven with cheese, french toast, pancakes, fried eggs etc There was a guy complaining that they only had 1 toaster for the whole buffet, he said that he was a Palace member and would never return. I bit my tongue but wanted to say "great, more food and space for us when we come back"
The sports bar in the cove side was pretty quiet, they have pool tables and the guys could watch the hockey game.

Make sure you go on the monkey tour. It is every day at 4 and they meet in the Cove side lobby. There are spider monkeys that live in the trees between the Cove and the Spa side. Once you learn where they are you can go back when it's less noisy and get some better pics. Keep your eyes peeled for some other animals, they have a little creature that looks like a fox and another that is more like a badger.

If you plan to use the beach area and go snorkeling I would suggest water shoes or sandals. Once you get out toward the rocks were the fish are the stones can be sharp. We saw life guards treating wounds.
Take lots of sun screen, the hotel charges $20 a bottle so you're better off bring too much than too little.

Spa - I have been to a spa once before but have never had a wrap or facial so I thought I would use my credits and take advantage of it. My friend and I both booked the seaweed wrap with full body massage and papaya facial. I would suggest to go early so you can use the other offereings like the steam room, sauna etc. so bring your bathing suit.
My wrap and massage was done by a man (Philipe), and I was a little nervous about it being that I was topless and wearing disposable underwear, but he was completely professional, and talked me through what he was doing at each step. My friend found her massage with another spa employee to be a little too rough and wasn't given direction as to what was being done or what to do next so she felt a little lost. But we both felt wonderful and our facials followed our wraps by different spa staff members.

The evening shows were great. They are held on the second floor in the Cove section. We saw the talent show and the fire show that was on the beach. They even had 1 night were they allowed vendors in to sell various items, everything from silver, clothes to art. But if you want variety I would still go to the market.

If you enjoy yoga they have a class every day at 8am. But it's not in the yoga hut on the main path, it's in one of the pavillions on the water, great view and breeze during class. I was pleasantly surprised that the class was challenging. They have other classes up at the gym on the spa side, the sign read Zumba, Spin Class and some others.

Check out was fine, the front desk called the night before to arrange a pick up time of our bags. They went over our bill and allowed us to pay cash or credit. There was a couple on the bus that had some problems with the bill. Be sure you keep all paperwork and recipts until check out. You have to provide room number, name and signature for all credits used so they should be able to track all charges.

Day Trips:
We had planned to use our credits to go to Chichen Itza but after sitting on a plane for 10 hours we couldn't bring our selves to sit on the bus for 6 hours, so, maybe next time.
We had also considered Isla Mujeres but we found out it was an 1.5 hr bus ride each way and a ferry ride to the island. You would be fed lunch but didn't include drinks. There is no snorkeling off the island, we would have had to pay to take us to the reef so we decided not to. If your looking for a day at the beach because the resort is lacking this, it would be a great choice and I hear they have shopping on the island.

What we did do is take a taxi to Playa del Carmen and did some shopping. The taxi charges a flat rate, there is no meters so it was $15 each way. It has changed a lot since we were there 10 years a go. Very modern shops, almost like a strip mall added to the local beach shops. We decided to stop at Senor Frog's for drinks and nachos and listened to the live music and had a blast.

We also did the Xplor trip through Sunwing. It was a short ride away, may 15 min, it's next to Xcaret. Xplor has ziplines, rafting, swim through caves and ATV like vehicles. Our bus got there when it opened at 9 and we did all activities, had lunch and had 30 min to spare at the end for a snack before we had to leave for the bus at 4:45. It's a full day, they provide a buffet lunch, drinks and snacks at different spots along the way. You get a locker to store your items. I would suggest water shoes/running shoes no socks or sandles with velco. Keep in mind the lockers are a bit out of the way and with the zip lines you go into the water so you will be soaked. The stairs and ramps get slippery when wet and the caves have sharp stones. So dress for all activities, don't plan to change after each one. Ladies, I would suggest you wear shorts that dry quickly, with the harness for the ziplines it can dig in to exposed skin. Anyone who is afraid of burning I would suggest a t-shirt as you will not be able to carry sun screen around with you. You have to wear a helmet the entire time due to the the stalactite in the caves, and safety concerns with zip lines, but the helmet also has a microchip that takes pictures at various spots. The pictures are $8 each or a memory card for $45. You can also view them on-line later and order at a later time.

If you plan to bring home alcohol we found that the prices were less at Playa del Carmen than they were at the Duty Free.

We hope you choose this resort and love it as much as we did!!

Room Tip: We asked for a room close to the Spa side, being in the middle of the resort is easier to get to all...
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
11 Thank aka_smitty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Penelope S, Customer Service Manager at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 20 February 2013
Hi aka_smitty, we would like to thank you for taking the time to send your comments about our resort.

We are very happy to know that our staff provided you with the excellent service our dear guests deserve and have come to expect from us. We appreciate you mentioned Aldo and Cesar, we are sure they made the best for you during your stay and they will be happy to read your kind comments.

There are many places where you can take advantage with your resort credits like the snorkel tour that you took, spa massages, golf tours, swimming with the dolphins, pyramids excursions, etc.

We appreciate your comments concerning the chairs; definitely we will share them with the management team for further consideration to avoid this occur in the future.

We value your comments, it`s important that our guests leave information that can be useful in their next visits to our resort.

Once again thank you for sharing your experience and we hope to host you again in your next vacations.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya

Property: Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
Address: Km 72, Carretera Cancun-Chetumal | Solidaridad, Puerto Aventuras 77710, Mexico (Formerly Aventura Cove Palace)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
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 Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#2 Business Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#2 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#3 Spa Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#4 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#7 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya 4.5*
Number of rooms: 1264
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This is the 1,264-room Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya. And this is where luxury meets satisfaction on a stage of stunning tropical views, a private white sand beach, and exclusive saltwater snorkeling areas. It's all capped off with an inviting traditional design, legendary Hard Rock hospitality, and undeniable excess at every turn. Live large at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya and enjoy the very best of paradise for all. Or, pack your appetite for opulence and hit Heaven - an elevated and exclusive retreat for adult guests only featuring a private adult beach, superlative amenities, and dining at its finest. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aventura Cove Palace Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya Mexico - Puerto Aventuras

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