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“Fantastic” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of El Dorado Royale, by Karisma

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El Dorado Royale, by Karisma
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Playa Paraiso
Certificate of Excellence
Swindon, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Fantastic”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 December 2013

Me and my fiancé (he proposed while we were there) had a great time at the El Dorado Royale. The food is amazing, the cocktail menu is extensive and the room was lovely too. We went for 2 weeks, 1 wouldn't haven't been enough for me. Staff were lovely, especially Luiz in the entertainment team. The only downfall was the Exotic Traveller presentation we went to which unfortunately we bought in to. Luckily we are within the 5 day cancellation period so hopefully they will give us our money back without too much fuss. The resort itself is lovely I would recommend it to anyone. But don't get tricked into the 90 minute presentation that sounds like a good idea but in reflection was certainly not for us.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Gem D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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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
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2,441)
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English first
Montreal, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 December 2013

My wife and I have purchased an Exotic Traveler Ruby membership a couple of years ago.
While not inexpensive it has proven to be excellent value and is making an already great resort even more enjoyable.
The complimentary private pick-up at the airport,which shaves anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes of a shared shuttle trip, brings you directly to the Casitas concierge for check in, bypassing the lobby desk altogether.
We a always choose one of the 2nd floor rooms with its own outdoor infinity pool and daybed on the terrace.
This is not your typical "all you can stuff your face with" buffet style resort. (We'll there is the breakfast buffet at one of the restaurants)
For dinner choices there are two excellent Italian restaurants, one very popular Japanese, a new steak place with a real fun menu, an authentic Mexican place (not tex-mex) and Fuentes culinary theatre where some renowned chefs perform their art live, while you dine along.
Of course you have a couple of open air restaurants for your snacks and casual dining experience.
We always find the staff very friendly and helpful without exception.
Special mention has to be made of the restaurant staff for efficiency and friendliness.
Oh yeah, there is a great wine list if you want a change from the included house wines. The sommeliers really know their stuff too.
Being an Exotic Traveler member has some additional benefits such as the concierge and butler services which will pamper you if you so choose. The membership gives us preferred room rates our rooms (not important I guess if you don't mind looking your vacation at the last minute)
Things like an included Candlelight Dinner at the beach and a 20% discount on all of your tour and other purchases at the resort are part of the perks.

The grounds, including the beach area are impeccably maintained. While the beach is smallish is is not overcrowded.
After a hurricane a number of years ago which did a lot of damage to a number of beaches in the area the resort has been installing artificial reefs (in essence giant geotextile sandbags) to halt erosion and re establish marine life.

While there are many great resorts this particular one has caught our fancy.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Rene W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Woking, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
388 reviews
160 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 515 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013

We arrived after an eleven hour flight to some rainy weather. Our transfer was quick with Thomson and we were the first stop. Check-in was slow to say the least as they were trying to upgrade everyone to the Casita’s area, we were offered a deal for 14 nights of $1400 but were pleased we didn’t opt for the upgrade as our Ocean Front room #426 was beautiful. It was spotlessly clean, had a massive bed which was so comfortable, a great view and of course all of the usual things offered in this class of hotel including a huge couple’s sized Jacuzzi. The cleaning service in our room was excellent and we tipped our maid daily as we were so impressed. The whole resort is spotless and kept so by an army of smiley staff!

Our first evening was quite fun, we headed off to find the Rincon Mexican restaurant in the dark and rain, and luckily found it! We ate breakfast, lunch and dinner there during the course of stay and all of the meals were excellent, the staff are happy to bring you jalapenos, habaneros and various chilli sauces if you are feeling brave, something we have found lacking at other resorts in the area.

We visited all of the restaurants during our stay and had no real issues, occasionally items were unavailable but there was so much choice that it really didn’t matter. Our favourite restaurant was El Fuentes, the culinary show, we were lucky enough to try all 3 menus and also had the special meal on Christmas Day, not festive but utterly superb and easily our favourite meal of the stay, Chef Julio Gomez is not only a great chef but also a great showman, and the Restaurant manager Manoli Gonzalez knows her wine and has a great rapport with him. We only had one troublesome meal during our stay and that was at Kampai, it was very busy and our food when it finally arrived was cold, it seemed that although the kitchen was well staffed, they were short staffed front of house. The food is without a doubt the best we have had in an All-Inclusive resort, it is not called Gourmet Inclusive for nothing. A special mention to Victor at JoJo’s restaurant, he is simply the most attentive waiter in the resort.

It is worth mentioning at this point that the resort has a massive greenhouse complex and they grow a lot of fruit, vegetables and herbs which are supplied to not only the restaurants here but also to other resorts in the Karisma chain, we went along for a tour one morning with Luiz, part of the entertainment team, he is so passionate about the greenhouse for someone so young, he is a real credit to the resort.

The resort is very eco friendly all round, they have installed special a/c units, they recycle water etc etc

The drinks here very good, they have all the usual premium brands, we knocked back a fair few Tanqueray’s during our stay, they do tend to use local alcohol in the cocktails during the day. We enjoyed the beach bar by Jo Jo’s (Thanks to Pedro!) and also really loved the Martini Bar next to reception.

We spent a couple of days on the beach, but the sea was quite wild and the wind very strong so we tended to head to the La Isla pool every day, it is a quiet pool but that didn’t stop some people bringing their own music along on occasions, why they couldn’t head Fuentes pool I do not know! In fact the only issue we had during our stay was caused initially by fellow guests.

There are concierge offices everywhere and you are assigned to one on arrival, ours initially were very helpful, letting us choose different pillow types, getting the minibar filled with your favourite drinks etc etc but it soon became clear that they were buttering you up to go along to the Exotic Traveller Loyalty programme tour, we went along as were keen to have a look around the top room types, but do not be fooled, this is not a loyalty programme, it is hard-sell TIMESHARE! And we managed to escape with our lives and credit cards intact after around two and a half hours!

We used the spa at the Casita’s whilst we were there, we got a good deal on an 80 minute massage and also took advantage of the Hydrotherapy when we were there, the whole thing was very professional and enjoyable.

As I previously mentioned our only really big issue during our stay was with fellow guests, we had new neighbours after our first week and they were very badly behaved, culminating in us being abruptly woken up at 1.30am by them banging around and arguing loudly on their balcony, I went out and politely asked them to keep it down, well that fell on deaf ears so I had no choice but to call reception, they came along and the guy left the room, but returned soon after and the noise continued for a further hour. This was followed by them hammering on our wall and being generally loud on their balcony from 6.50am!!! We complained and ended up having to move rooms, to the block next door, not a great move as the room we were moved was not so well kept, the water didn’t drain out of the shower and one of the basin’s was chipped, our new cleaner was nowhere near as good as the previous one. We complained to the concierge but nothing happened until two days later when we spoke to various members of staff, and were sent wine, cheese and champagne on what seemed like an almost daily basis but we didn’t receive a proper apology and were not compensated in an appropriate manner for the troubles we had encountered. Hilariously one of the chief concierges told me at had they known earlier (which they did) then they would have thrown the unruly residents of room 425 out of the hotel, total rubbish!!

One other thing that was very strange was the total lack of festive spirit on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Christmas Eve was a shambles as many people who went to the D’Italia restaurants at the villas and casitas were unable to get the Christmas menu that had been promised, the only other restaurant open was Cocotal and they served buffet which consisted of Salads, a carvery of turkey and beef and a mountain of desserts, we ate there, but there was no atmosphere, the service was slow, and the only things that kept us amused were a drunk guy pinching someone else’s table by mistake and a couple quaffing a full bottle of wine in 20 minutes and then running off without signing for it! A very quiet Christmas for us, and a bit of a let down, don’t get me wrong we weren’t expecting brussel’s sprouts and mince pies but we thought it would feel festive and it just didn’t.

The beach here is lovely, the sea was too rough for us to swim in during our stay, but it’s about a mile long and you could potentially snorkel straight from the beach. The grounds are immense, and you can easily lose yourself or find a quiet corner to relax in. There is wildlife everywhere and we loved watching the pelicans diving for fish every day.

The general staff are a real credit to this hotel and they work tirelessly to ensure everyone is having a great time, and smile constantly. However this doesn’t seem to extend to the management, and it is because of their lack of caring that we are unlikely to return to this resort, a real shame as the first 9/10 days were superb and despite the weather being gloomy at times, my husband and I had permanent smiles.

A quick mention to the Thomson Reps, who were not only good fun but also were helpful especially when we had our issues. They are a credit to Thomson. Happy New Year to all three of you, Emma, Katie and James!!!

PS We travelled on the new Dreamliner which was excellent! We got a cheap upgrade to premium on the way home, money very well spent.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Samiloupepperell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
calgary
Level Contributor
62 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013

We went back to the El Dorado a second time for December 7th to 17th. This time ten days. It was great as usual and they went out of their way for my birthday on the 9th. They had a choclate ganache cake on our table when we got back from the entertainment that night. and Had a banner across the door to our room wishing me Happy Birthday. They even gave me a free pass for their water hydrotherapy in their spa.Since we had already done that when we booked our massage I didn't use it.
The onlt thing we were not happy about was the dinner at La Fluentes. They put us way to left by glass winder and the waiter station. We couldn't see the tv screens very well and were not impressed by the food cooked for the five course theater meals. We definitely would not go there again. But the Santa Fe was fantastic and had to be resevred which our concierge Zully did for us. We loved the food and ambience. Our favorite place was Kampai. They even made up a cheesecake to wish me a Happy Birthday. All the staff and workers are so great and friendly. We do love that resort.
I highly recommend going here anytime. The only problem was when it rained poured really heavy the night before we left we walked to the Italian restaurant and our shoes and everything got soaked as the lighting on the paths is too dark and we couldn't see the deep puddles before we stepped in them and drainage is not good. But this is an unusual weather as its usually their dryer season. Oh well that's the way it goes. You will have a great time no matter what as they all make an effort to help and hope you enjoy your stay.

Room Tip: oceanfront front central area is pretty good. Lots of walking though.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank sandy17Calgary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013

We decided to get married at this beautiful resort and we're so pleased that we did, it was absolutely the right decision!

The food is brilliant; we loved the Kampai, the Italian nearest reception and thought the culinary theatre night was interesting too. The Kampai gets super busy though so please expect a wait, made more pleasurable by strolling down to the beach bar to grab a drink of your choice while you wait!

The huge four poster beds on the beach were the scene of many a nap-these are very popular though so I'd recommend getting up early to get yours!

There's an activity hut on the beach as well so we decided to go parasailing. Neither of us had done this before and it was great fun and worth it, even though it was not included in the price of the holiday.

Our wedding was just the two of us and the staff put as much effort in as if there was a huge party of guests which was really nice. I'd absolutely recommend having your hair and make up done in the spa, they did an amazing job and it was great to take my mind off the nerves beforehand!

People mentioned the sea-sacks in previous reviews and to be quite honest, it really didn't make any difference to us.

We've been back since late June and can't wait to go back once our first baby is born!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Bella T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
KarismaHotelsResorts, General Manager at El Dorado Royale, by Karisma, responded to this review, 30 December 2013
Many thanks for your wonderful review and a big congratulations on your nuptials and your first baby from all at the El Dorado Royale.

It was a great honor and our pleasure to host such a special occasion in your lives and we look forward to your return , to relive the wonderful memories created at the El Dorado Royale

Best Wishes

Francisco Jorge
General Manager
gm@eldoradoroyale.com.mx
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Peoria, Illinois
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013

My wife and I vacationed there for the second straight year, stayed for a whole week, found no need to even leave the resort grounds. Even though the resort was filled to 80%-plus capacity, you wouldn't know it most of the time -- the place is designed so wonderfully that you can be as secluded as you want. Amazing food -- each meal was better than the last! We will be back again next year.

This IS an adult-only resort, which, to be honest, was the main reason we chose it in the first place. We love kids -- have three of our own (now grown) -- but the childlessness of the resort creates a calm atmosphere we'd not experienced before.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ThomasAndrewJackson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
39 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013 via mobile

We went to El Dorado Royale between 27th November/4th December 2013 and we thought it delivered on its promises!

The hotel grounds are immaculate and the pools are clean and there are plenty of staff around, we never had to wait very long for anything!

In our opinion the El Dorado Royale was just as good (if not better sited) then the Casitas as all guests could use all of the services of both hotels (in reality it is just one big hotel!)

The food was delicious, each meal is a 3 course plus luxury treat! In our (and practically everyone's) opinion the Kampai restaurant was the best, with a great menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The only ones that were below par were the Mexican Restaurant for evening meal (why are all of the Mexican restaurants in Mexico poor - though conversely the breakfast there is excellent) and Cocotal - don't go there for breakfast (crowded) or dinner (tasteless).

The drinks are of very good quality and it was great to have a selection of house wines for meals - my partner and I don't like Chardonnay so it was good to have a Sauvignon Blanc alternative.

If you are a beach person then perhaps this is not the place for you, as it is pretty plain and featureless, though for what we wanted it for it was great. I used the gym 4 times on holiday and it is well stocked, not crowded and has a great view out on the ocean.

We spent our time at the pool mainly during the day and the only thing that I would say about all of the pools was that there was not much music going on (apart from one 'chilled out' CD which we had to ask to be put on...when we did the pool became instantly more popular and we had some great days there!!). We are 26 and 31 and not exactly party animals but even we found it a bit too chilled out at times, just a little more of the famous Mexican party feel would have been nice (and by that I mean just a bit of low volume happy music).

In all, we loved it, we wanted a great pool bar with great drinks and great meals out and got all of that! If you like gourmet food and a chilled out atmosphere then this is the place for you!!

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Ian2437
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Dorado Royale, by Karisma

Property: El Dorado Royale, by Karisma
Address: Carretera Cancun - Tulum Km. 45, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly El Dorado Royale)
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Spa Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 Romantic Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Dorado Royale, by Karisma 4.5*
Number of rooms: 639
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Conde Nast Traveler Readers’Top 100 Hotels in the world and a AAA Four Diamond Resort, El Dorado Royale is an adults-only destination that provides the ultimate in service in the ultimate setting.With more than a mile of sandy beach in Mexico's Riviera Maya, El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort, by Karisma offers an escape which no other destination can match. All the luxuries you can dream of, combined with an emphasis on personal attention to your every whim, make this an ideal location for a getaway. Travelers join us from around the world for romantic outdoor beach weddings or ceremonies in our intimate beachfront chapel, relaxing honeymoons, anniversary celebrations, or just much needed time off. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Dorado Royale Hotel Riviera Maya
El Dorado Royale Mexico
El Dorado Royale Cancun
El Dorado Royale Spa Resort
El Dorado Royale Resort
Eldorado Royale

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