We stayed at the Palladium on the Colonial Side from March 15 -22nd. It was my husband, myself and our 2 year old son. It was our second trip to the Mayan, the first being at the Copacabana Riviera, which was also wonderful.
Cancun Airport: We were the last to get off the plane and thus, last in a massive line which snaked outside of the airport. I thought for sure we would be in line for hours, but it was remarkably quick. We had landed at 12:10 on a Tuesday, was through customs, had our luggage on the bus and left for the hotel at about 1pm. The drive to the resort took about an hour, and it wasn’t that bad. Our bus was comprised entirely of Palladium people, so we had no stops to make.
Check-In: Very quick and smooth. I had emailed the resort before we left to request a room with a tub and one which was central to everything due to being with my toddler. We were pleasantly surprised to find we were given a free upgrade to a Jr. Suite in Villa 9.
Room: We had two double beds, and a pull out couch which we did not use. We were happy to have the extra seating area and coffee table though. The room itself was gorgeous, lots of marble, but it was slippery when wet, that’s for sure. The shower had great water pressure, but we found that the temperature fluctuated wildly from hot to lukewarm to cold back to hot again. We tipped our maid every other day but did not find that we received any better service on the tip days to the not. However, every day there seemed to be something ‘wrong’. One day the garbage hadn’t been emptied, the next we had no face towels and one day only one bath towel. It wasn’t really a big deal though and we didn’t think anything of it. Our mini bar seemed to get refilled everyday, which was nice. We were celebrating our wedding anniversary while there and on our first night, we were surprised to find a bottle of champagne and two flutes in our room. We thought this was incredibly nice. Since we had our son with us, we took our champagne home and we will have it when we have a night to ourselves.
Food: As everyone has stated, DO NOT MISS the Japanese restaurant. It was incredible, the best meal I had anywhere for a very long time. We also did the Mexican and Steakhouse. Both were great as well. The buffet for dinner wasn’t bad, definitely some of the food was hit or miss. Because of the little one, we got to the buffet when it opened at 6pm and some of the food was cold. Didn’t make a lot of sense to me since it had just opened, but it also wasn’t a big deal. The breakfast buffet was great. There was a lot of selection, but don’t miss the freshly pressed juices…incredible. I would not recommend eating at the Beach bar for anything except nachos or the made to order tacos. We had a burger and it was dried out and cold. Conversely, at the Gran Azul (sp?) the burgers were undercooked and were entirely pink inside. Gross. Even the hot dogs, yellow French fries and orange chicken nugget were questionable. Still, you won’t go hungry, we certainly didn’t. Don’t even try to go to the main buffet at lunch if you are the slightest bit wet from the pool. They kick people out even with the slightest dampness on them.
Pool: Awesome. Huge. The temperature is only cool for that initial dive in, then its fine. I was deathly afraid of freezing in there after all the previous reviews, but it wasn’t bad at all and I am very sensitive to the cold in general. Beware of missing tiles though. My husband scraped up on one and cut his hand open pretty badly. The kiddies pool was ok, it was a big size as well, but there was nothing of interest in there (no slides or water features). Beware that the towel game is in full effect here though…if you don’t get your towels down before 10 you will be out of luck obtaining a chair, especially if you need more than 1! Even at that, we found people to find chairs and then stick them in beside you, completely ignorant of any personal space. This was very annoying. I think a 2 – 3 foot distance on either side of you is acceptable, but some people insisted on putting their chairs 2 inches from yours, especially if you were in the shade.
Beach: Beautiful. White, pristine sand and crystal blue water. If you don’t like crowds, go to the Kanetaha side, you will have no problem getting chairs there any time of day. We had red flags about 4 of the 7 days we were there, but it didn’t stop us from swimming in the ocean. What did stop me was almost stepping on stingray. Still, the water was beautiful and the sand was great. It was like heaven.
Grounds: Immaculate and very well tended to. The only issue I had was that people felt the need to litter and not walk the extra few steps to get to a garbage can or somewhere to put down their beer bottles. The hotel was built around the jungle to preserve it - not to have rude tourists throw their crap in there.
People: The workers here were very kind and friendly. I found that a lot of them took great interest in my son, even hugging him and kissing him. It struck me that perhaps they miss their own families due to the incredibly long days they put in. In any event, they were great, and deserve an extra tip here and there.
Overall, the Palladium provided us a fabulous experience. I thought I might have been disappointed after reading all the good reviews, with the build up and all, but we were not the slight bit disappointed. Any questions, please feel free to post in the forums. I used this site extensively when planning our vacation, and would like to return the favour.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Grand Palladium Colonial Resort & Spa is located on a spectacular, private Caribbean beach-front complex that boasts of 800 meters of white, fine sand and turquoise blue waters. Guests of the Grand Palladium Colonial are invited to use the facilities provided by the adjoining Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, the Grand Palladium Kantenah Resort & Spa, and the Grand Palladium Riviera Resort & Spa, with the exception of the Royal Suite facilities. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Palladium Colonial Hotel
- Hotel Grand Palladium Colonial
- Grand Palladium Mexico
- Palladium Colonial Resort
- Grand Palladium Spa
- Grand Palladium Colonial Resort & Spa Riviera Maya, Mexico - Akumal