Before you start reading this, I would like you to note how many of these EXCELLENT reviews are from first time reviewers... it's the majority of them. Interesting.)
Your enjoyment of this resort is going to depend greatly on your expectations and prior travel & dining experiences. For us, it was not what we were looking for. We were looking for a relaxing place where we could enjoy good food and drinks and have access to child care on-site for our 18 month old daughter. Unfortunately, this is not what we experienced. First off, I have to say that we booked this resort because we received a great deal by booking before the opening. We’ve stayed at two other resorts in their opening year and had excellent experiences (notably Garza Blanca Preserve in Puerto Vallarta which I would highly recommend and is infinitely better in this price point – we were just about to book a return trip there until I found this “deal” and I was drawn in by the on-site childcare.)
If you are traveling with children, I would like you to note that there is NO way to stay comfortably in the standard suite. The glass “divider” is a joke and you really can’t keep it closed if you would like good circulation of the A/C. Also, there is a pass through from the living area to the bathroom, so forget about showering or enjoying the Jacuzzi after your child goes to bed. The other HUGE problem we experienced was the noise from the nightly entertainment. I thought this was a resort geared towards families but the noise from the entertainment was like having a night club in your room (it was done by 10pm, so this might not bother you, but it was so loud it was almost comical). Our poor daughter couldn’t sleep and we had to upgrade rooms so that we could put a wall between her and the noise (and us! And the bathroom!). I will tell you that management gave us a “deal” to upgrade to the 1 bedroom and they thought we should feel overwhelmed with appreciation for this – but the resort was all but empty. We were the only ones at dinner nearly every night. They could have easily put us in a 1 bedroom to send happy customers out into the world – customers who were willing to take a chance on them during their first few months, but nope it cost us our entire babysitting/tour fund to upgrade, so we didn’t even get to utilize those services – so the 2 reasons we came – the price and the childcare – were immediately negated. Oscar, the reservations manager, also told us the noise was not typical and was just from a wedding (because we had actually originally asked to switch resorts entirely) - that was a flat out lie. It was loud every night there was entertainment (which was most nights).
-The Service is EXCELLENT (with the exception of management which was good but not great). The staff and service are very friendly and very attentive. I actually can’t say enough about them and they seem very genuine (I did not find the management to be as genuine as the staff.)
-It is extremely clean. The staff is cleaning around the clock and they do an excellent job.
-The grounds are very pretty and well maintained. With the exception of the beach, everything was beautiful.
-The rooms are beautiful and if you are traveling as a couple, the standard room will work fine for you. The 1 bedroom was VERY large and very nice. We also liked having the outdoor shower. The infinity pool was nice, but really too cold to swim in. We did sit on the loungers while our daughter took her naps though, so the additional space was nice.
-Kids Club. It was nice and the employees seemed friendly and attentive. I wouldn’t know first hand because we didn’t get to use the babysitting services.
-The food was generally good. Gourmet? No. Gourmet presentation, I’ll give them that. But if you have experience with fine dining, you will not feel that it’s gourmet. Some things were really good, some things were borderline inedible. However, it was better than the food at somewhere like a Sandals, for example. We found the breakfast buffet to be good with lots of choices. I heard people say it was monotonous, but I think that would be your own fault. Our favorite restaurant was Habb. Wine Kitchen was good too and we found the portions to be the size we would expect at a “gourmet” restaurant. Jade was horrible – bordering on cat food. It was bad. I’m not sure what the other reviewers are talking about or where they are eating normally, but I can’t tell you enough how bad it was. The buffet was really dependent on what you got, and, as with nearly all resorts, the desserts were really bad everywhere.
- The beach. They are still doing tons of work on the artificial reef so there are tons of workers and boats right there working all day. So, if you want to hang out at the beach (as we do – we have a pool at home, we’re there for the beach) you’ll be breathing exhaust fumes all day. The beach is also not swimmable. It is very rocky and you can get to waist high at the most. It was good for a young child to play in though because the rocks eliminated the surf (but the fumes!).
-The drinks! Oh my god the drinks! First of all, every juice they give you tastes as if they are loaded with artificial sweeteners – especially the Orange juice. All of the mixed drinks had the same aspartame flavor. Margaritas were embarrassingly bad – I had one that tasted as if it was made with vodka?!?! The wine was like $3 drug store wine and I’d have to try not to laugh as they poured a sample into my glass at dinner, but it was better than the mixed drinks! Oh, and you can’t order a bottle of this cheap wine with your room service or it’ll cost you $25! What a joke. You can order a ton of glasses, but not the bottle. By the end of the week, I was drinking sodas and beer only.
- This place has an identity crisis. They were blasting loud obnoxious music by the pool all day and offering up “SHOTS!” at 10am. I have no problem if that’s what you’re on vacation to do, but at a family resort? It wasn’t what we were expecting. It was too tame for the “partiers” and too loud for the “relaxers” – it was just an all around strange vibe. It was too family oriented for couples (who seemed to be running away next door as fast as they could) but not family friendly enough for the families (we talked to many couples with babies who were having the same problems as us.)
-The noise. I don’t think I was able to sit and enjoy the sound of the ocean once. Again, this is relative as to the type of vacation you want.
-The pool is sooo cold (the infinity pools were even colder). We couldn't swim in it most days. We would just sit in the baby pool with our daughter because it was slightly warmer.
-We also had a huge problem trying to rent a car. They list this on their sheet like it’s something they help you do. It was the worst experience ever. We wasted HOURS of our vacation dealing with this. They have no clue what they are doing or how to help you. It was kind of the theme of the service. They are SOOO friendly but really can’t deliver what you need – this would be a management problem. We were willing to just pay extra to do it at El Dorado next door but they never seemed to be able to get them on the phone. It was so weird and they should be embarrassed about the service that was provided to us.
-I emailed the GM while we were there because he is always writing to people “I wish you would have addressed these issues while you were here” – so I did. Oscar (not the GM) emailed me back after we left and I found the email to be very condescending. He even said that he spoke with my husband who said everything was fine – as if to act like I am somehow lying about our experience. Then he offered the money we paid as a resort credit for a return trip – after I told him we’d never return – wow, what a nice gesture.
I wouldn’t recommend Generations Riviera Maya – especially to families. It does have some good points but it’s overpriced for what it is. There are plenty of better resorts in this price range (especially if you are a family needing a 1 bedroom).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Generations Riviera Maya by Karisma is Mexico's premier all Suite, all Butler, all Gourmet beachfront resort where couples, wedding parties and families savor a Gourmet Inclusive(R) experience, a vacation that fosters togetherness. This 144 suite hotel stretches along a secluded beach, providing indulgences from gourmet cuisine, to luxurious suites with butler service. Families can relax knowing that their little ones are in good hands with our certified team of professionals at our Eko Kids Club. Guests are invited to customize their Gourmet Inclusive(R) experience by completing a pre-arrival form online. ... more less
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