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“A Lovely Mexican Resort...”

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The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya
Ranked #9 of 11 Hotels in Playa Paraiso
Certificate of Excellence
Kenmore, Washington
Level 6 Contributor
178 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“A Lovely Mexican Resort...”
Reviewed 29 June 2014

I agree with the majority of previous comments. The place is far from town, but taxi service is plenty (M$230 for 4 people) or take the resort shuttle if only 2 of you cause it costs less. Weigh your options of getting a car rental versus taxi service and using private tours. We broke even for 4 adults.

Food: First day was grocery shopping at MegaMart. Stock up here for duration of stay cause restaurant prices at resort is high. We got our drinks from MegaMart and drank them poolside.
We did dine at the resort restaurants a couple of times. We prepared most of our meals indoors, when we were not touring the area ruins or visiting Playa del Carmen. Resort also has the Jade shop/ boutique for sundries and extra grocery at high prices.

Beach: Place is rocky so bring your water shoes. There is a sandy area further in about 3.5 ft where you can enjoy the waves. And snorkeling is doable among the rocky parts. Water temp is devine and we did spend long afternoons on the beach just soaking up the sun.

Pools: Like what everyone says, multiple pools abound. There was plenty of room for privacy, it did not feel crowded. Although, we were told that June is low season.

Resort layout: HUGH ! We got lost our first day ! This place is sprawling, but the staff/golfcarts transport people around from point to point, and this helps to get around quicker. Yes, do ask for a unit in bldgs.1 or 2 or 3 or 4. We were in 3, so it made our stroll to the pool shorter. Also ask for 3rd floor so it's quieter since no one is on the floor above. The resort also has a flamingo pen and a crocodile pen. And many iguanas!!

Service: A great team of workers really go the extra mile to make you feel at home ! From housekeeping, to pool towel folks, to restaurant staff. Very friendly crew.

Front Desk: When you check in, you will be asked to attend a timeshare presentation. Just say no. We came on a RCI reservation, and a staff person (Ivan)attempted to get us to attend a RCI update. I really had to brush him off. And the next morning, you will be asked again if you were offered to listen to a presentation. Check-in and check-out was quick and prompt.

Tours: We visited Tulum Ruins and beach via taxi. We got lucky with Monica R. Rivas taxi#1705 , who really has a command of good English ( She lived in Chicago briefly ).
Next time we'll do her Akumal Snorkeling trip.
We also pre-booked with www.mayans-explorers.com , which was the all-day tour of Chichen Itka, cenote dip, buffet lunch, Ek Balam ruins, Valladolid, and Tres Tonos tequila distillery.
If you book them, ask for Diego (driver) and Merux (proguide). Highly recommended private tour.

Conclusion: Will we stay there again? YUP !!! Maybe by then they'll get more sand over the rocky areas on the beach.

Room Tip: 3rd topmost floor, ask for bldgs. 1 - 3 , shorter walk to pools
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
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5 Thank Lady_Tubs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Houston, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
32 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 June 2014

My review is focused on this being a condo style vacation, similar to VRBO. The only difference is that we had the benefit of having the amenities of a hotel; housekeeping, room service, etc. The most important thing to consider is “how” you and your family like to vacation. 12 of us stayed at the Grand Mayan to celebrate my son and his girlfriend’s high school graduation. My family had a 2BR with 5 adults (son and girlfriend being 2 adults) and one 10 year old. So, we had 6 in a 2BR and it was just fine. Also, we were more than happy to make sandwiches, eat snacks in the room, order room service or eat at a restaurant. The key thing here is that I paid for I wanted to use. Some review called in nickel & dime tactics, I view it as I get to choose what I want to pay for. With that in mind, we ate as much as we wanted, and yes, we drank as much as we wanted. Happy Hour and non-Happy Hour prices. However, we are not big drinkers, but my 18yr old son and girlfriend did indulge in some adult beverages. After all, we are in Mexico and they will be going to college in the fall. No need to keep it a mystery. I digress. The point here is that on TA a lot of hoopla has been spewed about how expensive everything is on the resort. I submit to you, to look at the cost from a MACRO perspective and not at a bag of chips level. For some perspective, I’ve reviewed the cost of some nearby All-Inclusive resorts and compared them to my bill after 1 week. As a side note, we did spend 1 full day at Xel-Ha and another day in Playa Del Carmen. So, my bill from GM for 1 week with 5 adults and one 10 year old was only $2,004.04. From a cost per person calculation, I’m only using the 5 adults.

So, take a look at what it would cost for 5 adults at similar resorts in the area that are all-inclusive. Dollar amounts are from RCI.


Grand Velas Riviera Maya: $269/person/day = $9,415
Playacar Palace: $150/person/day = $5,250
The Royal Playa del Carmen: $163/person/day = $5,705
Grand Mayan Riviera Maya $ 57/person/day = $2,004


We also had a really nice dinner at Tramanto on the last night, ordered a nice bottle of wine and had a fabulous time. At an AI, if you travel off-site, you’re paying twice for meals and drinks. Just something to take into consideration.

I would highly recommend the Grand Mayan Riviera Maya for large families and for those who like to travel into town, explore the region and do other things off the resort. For those that like to vacation and stay in one place, then an AI may be a better choice. Again, it depends on how you like to ‘vacation’. I plan to take my wife to Cabo next fall for an anniversary trip and we’ll probably stay at an all-inclusive. Be well informed and you’ll not be disappointed here at GM.

Another update, Cirque du Soleil Java is scheduled to open November 8th. This will be a huge benefit to anyone staying at GM resort. Also, they are in the midst of building another ‘super pool’ along the beach. It’s scheduled to open around the same time. I’ve included some photos of the construction. Seems like this resort is focusing on entertainment and ‘things to do’ while on vacation. And that is what we like when traveling with family.

I’m giving GM a very good rating for the unit itself. We went to the showroom and saw The Grand Bliss and Grand Luxxe. Those units are 5 star all the way. The resort, IMHO, deserves 5 stars because we love all the shade from the trees.

There is a bridge between building 4 and 5 that is great for family photos.

Room Tip: Get a unit in Building 1 - 7. We really enjoyed our walks around the resort. However, if we were i...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
9 Thank Roger H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pennsylvania
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 June 2014

We loved alot about the Grand Mayan, but it deffinatly fell short. It's so big..the golf carts that come around occasionally just are not sufficient nor are the chairs around the amazing multiple pools. If your not to the pool by 7 or 8 in the morning you shouldn't even bother. The pool area becomes a zoo soon after. It's really a shame, but the resort is too big and houses too many people for the largest pool area I have ever seen. As for the time share presentation..it was TERRIBLE!! My husband and I own multiple time-shares and have been to many presentations. This one was by far the worst and easily the most high pressure. When we told them no, our sales lady said she would get someone to check us out so we could leave, turned out we went through 5 more sales people!! I thought we'd never be released, the 3rd girl, stomped off in her 4 inch spike heals, I guess she really didn't like our NO...actually quite pathetic in their attempt to sell to us. The first quote was for $198000, and by the time we hit guy # 6 he only wanted $1200!! Too bad, our unit was amazing as was the housekeeping, food and beach.

Room Tip: Avoid the Jungle, its about 1/2 mile or more to the beach, albeit an nice walk.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank mikedebotr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Houston, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2014

Reservation to this resort was made via an RCI exchange. Property is located 20-25 mins north of Playa del Carmen, 30 or so minutes from Cancun's "Zona Hotelera". Property is shared with other resorts part of the same management .

Not a first good impression when arriving due to the location, but that quickly changed when I was escorted to the suite. Very nice, bed a little too hard for my taste but overall happy with the accomodations a cleanliness.

Resort grounds are very nice, was told occupancy was low so had no issues finding locations by the pool. Did have issues with people arriving very early to "reserve" the cabanas by leaving a t-shirt or a book. Resort has a policy that cannot be done and items would be removed after one hour, but that policy was not being enforced. Very annoying.

Staff was wonderful, from the reception desk, concierge, bellboys, drivers, waiters and waitresses and maids, all very friendly and polite. Was having a wonderful time until....... The "required" 90 minute presentation.

Encountered what must be the most aggressive sales pitch I have ever, 90 minutes? Hardly, try 4-5-6 hours of the most confusing, hard selling, lies filled presentation. If it sounds to good to be true, it is because it is not true. I finally had to stand my ground to finish the insane sales pitch, however by that time it had taken its toll, ruined the rest of our stay, and left us not ever wanted to set foot in that or any other property managed by the same company again. Researching on line afterwards I'm so glad I resisted and stopped the non-sense, as it is a big scam, with many complaints filed over the years.

Would I recommend the property to anyone? No without giving them a big warning to avoid the presentation at all costs, regardless of what incentives they offer. I will NEVER submit myself to such and imposition again..

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank tabascoone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hod Hasharon, Israel
Level 6 Contributor
98 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 June 2014

The entire resort is simply luxurious. There are staff keeping it groomed and looking beautiful at all times. We had a 2 bedroom suite looking over a quiet part of the grounds -- green and green and green. The bedrooms and living room kitchen were very comfortable -- large and well appointed (although i cannot understand why they do not supply a kettle. we had to boil water in a pot). Make sure you go see the flamingos! The shuttles worked extremely well. Although they have fixed routes, they also are willing to order you a special shuttle to go closer to your room or to a site not on the shuttle route.

The maps could have been much clearer. They have two different maps of the site and they do not really match one to the other. It took us two days to understand that the 20 minute shuttle ride that we were taking from our room to the beach was really only an 8 minute walk. June is out of season so the sites were relatively empty but there were also fewer events at the hotel.

We were four people and rented a car. Well worth it since getting around the area (resort is in between Playa del Carmen and Cancun) becomes ludicrously expensive if you need to take taxis. We felt quite comfortable driving around and even drove all the way up to Chichen Itza.
We recommend your driving yourself most places and using local guides should you wish to. Beware the "official" guides in the parking lot though at Tulum -- there are much cheaper guides once you take the trolley up to the real entrance to the archaeological site.

Room Tip: Ask to be a short walk from your parking lot (and then try and figure out where your parking lot is...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank BikeIsrael
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Surrey, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
88 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 June 2014

As i have mentioned with the other Grand Mayan resorts i have visited, this one as well is an great resort. The grounds are amazing,employees are very friendly and take care of anything you may need. The only drawback, right now, with this location is the beach. There is not much of beach if you enjoy swimming and snorkelling or playing in the gorgeous waters in the sea. It is very rocks ,coral and quite rough waters. Although, they are apparently going to be extending the beach out, with addition of sand etc,which will improve this i presume. Across the highway is being build an onsite Circ De soleil, nice for those whom enjoy that entertainment, along with some shopping plaza we were told. All in all, this resort and location are great, just a few drawbacks at this time,which are apparently going to be fixed to improve this resort.

Room Tip: always ask for top floors, none are ocean view ,as this resort is a horse shoe shape and far back fr...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Brent F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tacoma, Washington
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 18 June 2014

The resort itself is wonderful.Rooms were nice.Service overall was good.The restaurants I felt were average quality meals for a high price. I guess my main complaint would be about the 30 dollars a day for internet ,newspaper,which we never received,local phone calls,pretty much things we didn't use. To add insult to injury,when we returned home and I looked at the resort again the fee had been reduced to 75.00. That was 135.00 dollars cheaper than what we paid. We were also charged about 80.00 dollars extra for paying in cash at checkout rather than using a charge card.We were also charged a extra 20.00 dollars tax we haven't had to pay in the past. We were also accused of planting a giant cockroach in our room.Not happy about that one. It was the only one in our room that week.

Room Tip: Building 1-4 best for location.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Coleen914
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya

Property: The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya
Address: Km 48 Carretera Federal, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#5 Spa Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#6 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#9 Romantic Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya 5*
Number of rooms: 500
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
I am offering suites at The Vidanta Grand Mayan Riviera Maya resort, located on the Yucatan Peninsula. This resort has everything you could ever need to experience true happiness: JOYA, a resident Cirque du Soleil show; five luxury resort hotels; world-class restaurants; spectacular pools; shopping boutiques; a Jack Nicklaus golf course; indulgent spas and the most attentive staff in Mexico. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Grand Mayan Riviera Maya
Wyndham Playa Del Carmen
Playa Del Carmen Wyndham
Grand Mayan Cancun
Grand Mayan Playa Del Carmen

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