This hotel plays an ace with its beachfront setting. Plus, there are luxury touches wherever you go...
This deluxe beachfront hotel is about a 5-minute drive from Playa del Carmen’s stylish 5thAvenue. Talking of style, the pool scene gets extra points on this front, thanks to a swim-up bar, a whirlpool and in-water sunloungers.
Inside, the Riu Palace Riviera Maya goes all out to impress. You get a Junior Suite as standard, with free Wi-Fi. And when it comes to dining, there are 5 speciality restaurants to choose from.
Spend your day relaxing in the huge pool, or lie back on a sunbed. There are parasols to give you a bit of shade, and pool towels are provided. The pool has whirlpool baths and pool loungers, for that extra bit of comfort and relaxation.
Start your day at Don Manolo with a full American breakfast buffet, or opt for the lighter Continental option. For lunch you can expect a hot and cold buffet, with pizza, pasta and salads. There's a show cooking station where your meal will be freshly cooked for your order. And there's also a themed dinner buffet 3 times a week.
Junior suite sleeps up to 4 - can be sold as a single - with a ceiling fan and turndown service. You'll have a liquor dispenser, coffee-maker and iron with ironing board. There's also a hydro-massage bath and toiletries.
Thank you Riu Palace Riviera Maya! We had an amazing time at your hotel! We didnât realize until day two that there was a Riu Palace Mexico. Anyone looking at these hotels should consider them closely as they are very different with the same name. We almost booked the wrong one.
We had only two negatives: the halls smelled like sour towels - it was funky some days. I also have to say that the water pressure made it hard to wash off soap.
However, the food was amazing! The staff was amazing! We enjoyed every bit of the 10 days we were there. The minor negatives didnât ruin our stay at all. One suggestion for other guests is to get your dinner reservations early! The dinner slots fill up fast.
There were many great staff members; however we would like to specially thank a few:
Thank you Suemy for being excelente! We appreciate all your help by the pool with being content during our stay! Thank you to Ricky, Diego, Raffael, Lilly, and Elizabeth (Eli) for your entertainment and customer service! Lester you have a great team and we appreciate all your service as well! Maiden in the lobby bar was great and we appreciate all the staff in the buffet hall! Excellente!!
We would definately recommend this hotel to our friends and family!
Thank you for the great time!! Hope to be back again soon!More
Troy S, Denver, Colorado
Beautiful hotel, fantastic staff.
What a fantastic hotel. I really did not want to come home. We travelled here for a family wedding and there were 23 of us in total!
Firstly - the rooms. They are huge! My bed was big enough for four people. The air con is fantastic, very cold which is exactly what's needed. The bathroom has two sinks, large shower and jacuzzi bath. They are kept incredibly clean by the maids, and they also make little towel animals for you and leave them on your bed :) there's a wide screen TV and sofa just in front of the balcony. We were lucky enough to have one of the larger balconys over looking the gardens near the pool. It's beautiful. The mini bar is great and is ALWAYS stocked up daily. You also have optics with a choice of premium spirits ;)
Secondly - the hotel itself. The lobby is stunning, with chandeliers and marbel flooring etc. The lobby bar is amazing and they do gorgeous cocktails. We spent many nights sat around here chatting before dinner listening to the piano player. The gardens are lovely on the way down to the pool. They have fountains and lots of tropical birds flying round. The pool is big with a swim up bar and they also do a variation of fantastic cocktails (I recommend Passion Dreams!). They do not scrimp on the drinks, they use premium spirits - no cheap stuff. Gordon's gin, Smirnoff Vodka etc... They give you a wifi password as soon as you check in, so no need to worry about keeping in touch with anyone in the UK or paying for Internet (unless of course you don't want to keep in touch, then of course this hotel absolutely does not have wifi facilities...)
Thirdly - the staff. They cannot do enough for you. I barely moved all holiday as they constantly are on the go looking after you, bringing you drinks and making sure you're ok, whether you tip them or not (we did, some didn't). Victor, the waitor by the pool is such a nice guy. He works his butt off but nothing is a problem. He recommends drinks and he's so quick!
They set up little stalls in front of the main fountain hear the restaurant and make you tequilas, or mulled wines, champagne cocktails etc - brilliant.
Fourthly - the food. I fear I cannot put into words how amazing the food is, but I'll try. I've travelled to a few places but this has by far been the best quality of food in any hotel I've stayed in, including the UK. They have absolutely everything you could think of. They cook steaks for you, fresh salmon, there's fresh salads, pizza, burgers, hot dogs, seafood, Chinese etc etc. And it's all wonderful. I had to try so hard not to pile on a good stone before I returned home...
The beach is like something out of a film, especially if you go and watch the sunrise early morning around 5am, it's a must. The sea is like bath water! (Apart from salty...)
I would definitely go back to this place. It's safe, clean, beautiful and there are so many things to do. I'd recommend the dolphin trip (but be prepared to pay hundreds of dollars for photos... We didn't.) and also the turtle trip! That was my favourite.
If you have a smart phone, definitely get a waterproof case off amazon, I got some amazing pictures of the turtles and also videos. The case was only Â£10 with delivery. They sell them over there at double the price.
DEFINITELY take mosquito repellant, with it being right on the beach there are lots of them! Thompson try to sell you these little telephone wire type bands but they don't even work... So don't bother getting those.
Don't forget your airport tax for leaving the country, it's Â£35 so around 700 pesos. I'd get dollars rather than pesos as they're easier to use and accepted everywhere.
You can visit other hotels if you feel like it but I found it wasn't even worth it as non of them were as good as the Riu!
Have champagne for breakfast... You're on holiday ;)More
Sofie Q, Stockton-on-Tees, England, United Kingdom
We live in Scotland so had to travel to England for the long haul flight to Cancun. However it was well worth it. We booked with Thomson's and were met by a private hire at the airport to take us to the hotel, this took about 1 hour. We were given a drink on arrival and check in was efficient and friendly. The reception area is beautiful with large crystal chandeliers and Mexican shaped hat chairs!
The rooms are large and spotless. Two hand basins in bathroom and Jacuzzi bath which took forever to fill and then didn't work very well!!! Plenty of towels which are changed daily. Efficient air condition and flat screen tv. Plenty of storage with safety deposit box in wardrobe. The first week of our holiday we didn't hear any noises in the room but the second week we could hear the guests next door 'talking' they were quite loud also lots of noise in the corridors so not sure about the deafening in the rooms.
The food in the buffet restaurant was very good and there was always a carvery if you didn't see anything you liked. There was a wide variety from soups, salads, meat/fish dishes, vegetables, sweets, cakes, ice cream and of course 2 chocolate fountains - 1 white chocolate and 1 milk with marshmallows or fruit for coating.
We tried all of the a la carte restaurants and my favourite was the Krystal the tenderloin of beef was delicious. My husband liked the Botafogo with all the different meats which were served from a skewer.
The drinks including the cocktails were top quality and plentiful, although I wasn't keen on their wine!
All the staff work very hard and are always helpful and friendly considering how hard they work I don't know how they manage to stay so happy!
The beach is beautiful with lots of palm trees for shade. I think they have over 600 palm trees! The waves can be very strong and my husband lost his sunglasses in the waves!! They do have flags on the beach alerting you to the dangers.
In my opinion what lets this hotel down is the evening entertainment. There is normally a group playing outside early evening and people can dance, this is very good but finishes about 8.30pm and they have a mini disco for children. They then present certificates for the winners of the games that day but after that I personally feel that the entertainment isn't very good. I don't know why they don't have the band playing for longer or have them on later a night.
The hotel is positioned well. We walked along the beach to the Riu Palace (we stayed there before it was renovated) it is lovely all silver and purple with various swimming pools but I prefer the authenticity of the Riviera Maya. We also popped into the Tequila (drinks not so good and no table service). About 10 minutes up the road there are stalls and a few shops. It also takes about 15 minutes walk and you are in Playa del Carmen, taxi back costs about 90 pesos.
We really enjoyed our stay.More
An Excellent Vacation
My wife and I just got back from the Riu Palace Riviera Maya, and we had a fabulous time. We stayed there from November 16 to 23.
We have been to Playa Del Carmen/Riviera Maya quite a few times, and this vacation was definitely not a disappointment.
The hotel is beautiful, tastefully decorated and very luxurious, and the grounds are nicely landscaped and very well maintained. The rooms are large enough and comfortable, but they are not huge as in some resorts that we have stayed at. The maid service was great, and our room was always nicely cleaned every day. In the evening there is also turn-down service, and if room towels were used, new clean ones would be provided again. There is a mini-bar in the room with a fridge, as well as 4 x 1 litre bottles of self-serve liquor: Brandy, whiskey, tequila and vodka. The room fridge had beer, pop and lots of water. They would come and refill it at times, but if we were running out of anything, all it took was a quick phone call, and usually within 10 minutes they were there with whatever beer/pop/water you needed, and there were no daily quotas, like in some places.
However, esthetically the rooms need some updating and improvements, especially the bathrooms. We found that during the day, the water pressure was strong and fine, however in the evening, usually near dinner time, the water pressure was bad at times, which is likely because so many people are using it to get showered and ready for dinner. Regardless, the Riu needs to do something to improve the water pressure so that it is more consistent, no matter what time of day it is.
You can fortunately walk everywhere at this resort, as it is all centered, unlike some places that are so huge that you need to take a trolley to get around. The location is also great as it is a $7 USD taxi ride to the Cozumel ferry dock and the start of the 5th Avenue shops of Playa Del Carmen, or if you walk, as we did, it should not take more than 20-30 minutes. We would usually do a long walk after lunch (2-3 hours), and then we would take a taxi back to the hotel from the far end of the 5th Avenue strip which was $10 USD.
The beach area is very clean and spacious, and it is not difficult to get a lounge chair, especially since when the number of chairs starts to go down, the staff brings more out. The currents are occasionally strong, for the less experienced swimmers, but I rather enjoyed playing in the waves during red flags, while my wife would only go to waist levels during these times. For the most part, the ocean water is very clear and clean, but occasionally the seaweed gets out of control. We noticed twice during our stay that the seaweed was rampant, and the resort employees would dig holes and bury the seaweed along the beach. That is just nature, and you cannot fault the resort for this, but they did put in a strong effort to remedy this seaweed issue. The sand is white and for the most part, the ocean is clear and blue. It is definitely one of the better beaches that we have been to. There is also waiter service on the beach, and the guys were very nice and friendly, and they came by quite often, thereby deserving tips.
The pools are also clean and spacious, and have lots of seating and lounging space available around them. However, the chairs/loungers do get taken up pretty quickly in the morning. Us being beach people, this was never an issue since we usually only went to the pools for a short time later in the day to get a drink at the pool bar, and chairs/loungers were always readily available when we went to the pools.
The food was excellent at the resort overall, and there was always a very good variety at the Don Manolo buffet, regardless of which meal of the day it was. On Thursday it was âGala Nightâ at the buffet, and there was a very good selection of seafood, including lobster, calamari, shrimp, etc., and we being seafood lovers, thoroughly enjoyed this dinner, even a little bit more than the others.
We ate at 3 a la carte restaurants during our stay at Riu Palace: Botafogo Brazilian Rodizio, Chiliâs Steakhouse and Krystal Fusion restaurant. The service at all 3 restaurants was excellent, and so was the food, especially at Krystal Fusion restaurant, which we highly recommend. The Botafogo Brazilian Rodizio was the least favorite of the 3 as far as food goes, but the service was impeccable like in the others. The reason this restaurant gets the lowest vote of the 3 is that we found the meats to be over-cooked for our taste, but if you like you meats very well done you will love it.
Wi-Fi is available for free everywhere at the resort, except for the beach, which is expected. It worked well enough to check e-mail and do some light browsing, but donât expect amazing speeds. Regardless, you should not need high speed browsing on your vacation anyway, so it does not matter. The Wi-Fi here was actually better than at many other places that we have stayed at, and for free, you canât complain. If you really need it, there is high speed internet at a cost available.
As for the entertainment, we really enjoyed the live bands that played there. There was a variety, so every night it was something different. There were usually 2 or 3 shows every night, the first being the live band, and the second being a kids show, and the 3rd being an adult show of sorts, which we usually missed.
For the families and children, there were many programs, shows and activities, but since we were travelling as a couple, we did not go to any, but we did notice the good variety.
Overall, this resort has it all, regardless of your age, great for both couples and families.
To Riu management, please do something to improve the water pressure in the bathrooms.
Special mention for great service goes out to Esteban, Maribel, Lester and Wilberth.
Yes, we would go back again.More
pitfloyd, Toronto, Canada
Great Hotel in Playa, would go back.
So some of the reviews about how the hotel is aging are true, this hotel is a real jem. We had a great stay in the second floor of the block right near the pool. The room was very nice and had no real issues. Very large balcony overlooking the beautiful fountains. The hotel is set up like a big horseshoe so all of the nicer rooms look at the fountain area. We stayed at the pool most of the time and it was perfect. Very nice staff delivering drinks, and a great entertainment staff keeping everyone laughing. Swim up bar was nice and busy all day, without really being loud or annoying. The food was pretty good for a all inclusive. Very little spices used anywhere, but fresh. Breakfast was fantastic everyday. Diners were pretty average, but overall good experience. The beach area was set up nice with plenty of chairs and a nice view of the ocean. Night entertainment was decent with music/bands set up in the outside common area. We didn't go to any of the shows. We had a great time and went to another resort for the second half of my vacation and it wasn't even close to as nice. There have been some complaints of missing tiles at the pool, slightly dated rooms, and other issues about the property, but none of them really matter. Great hotel, great staff, and great times. My wife and I only stay at all inclusives and we would go back again.More