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“Excellent on both visits 2008 & 2010” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya

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Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya
Ranked #36 of 213 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
Cowes, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Excellent on both visits 2008 & 2010”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 March 2012

On both visits to the Riu Palace Riviera Maya I experienced excellent service from all staff in addition to a fantastic range of food and activites.

I would not hesitate to recommend the RPRM, it is a great resort with excellent staff.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CO80
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 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 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 (949)
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Abbotsford BC Canada
Level Contributor
26 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2012

Just returned for the second time visit to Riu Palace Riviera Maya. This time around I needed a nice rest and this place did it. The staff were excellent and the my room (which faced the main court yard) was always clean and comfy. I did find the food a bit boring after awhile, but the quality was always very good. A nice walk down the road one way leads to Star Buck and a few stores. The other was leads to Playa del Carmen and all the landsharks.....all part of the package.
Still, I do recommend this excellent but small All inclusive.

Room Tip: Keep in and, that rooms that end in 85-90 face directly into the court yard AND stage areas. So if...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Zymeout
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level Contributor
41 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2012

We went in August 2011. Sorry for the belated review. This website provides lots of valuable tips so we want to reciprocate. Most of the reviews are subjective so I’ll attempt to keep it brief. We’re intelligent enough to realize that a 5-star resort in Mexico isn’t comparable to a 5-star in Canada/USA. Ignore the majority of the negative feedback. I believe these people have unrealistic expectations for the price they paid. We picked this resort based on the following: close proximity to Playa del Carmen (20 minute walk or 5 minute cab ride), fabulous beach, consistently great weather, decent price and previous experience at a RIU Palace (Cabo). This was our second time staying in the Playacar area in the past five years so we knew the lay of the land. This is a gated community (similar to Florida) with at least a dozen resorts, condos and a golf course. Very safe. I believe the RIU chain has five properties (not all on the ocean) in this community which you have reciprocating privileges. We previously stayed at the Iberostar Quetzal Playacar which was decent and a few resorts down. The RIU Palace Riviera Maya is the nicest resort in this area. Very stately and architecturally impressive. The only neighboring resort that would be comparable is the Royal Hideaway (more expensive, adults only, no swim-up bar, no hobie cats, no buffet). We emailed the resort ahead of time and requested a third floor room and made two dinner reservations.

palace.rivieramaya@riu.com

Room: We stayed in room # 2135 which was on the third floor. It was classified as garden view and overlooked a neighboring property not the courtyard. Very quiet and clean. Room was a little musty but expected in a tropical location. Bring some air fresheners. Room was nicely appointed. Bed was firm but comfortable. Never saw a bug. Air conditioning worked great. Safe worked great. No issues with theft. Lots of towels. Bar fridge stocked daily. Leave housekeeping a decent daily tip and you won’t have a problem. We didn’t receive turn down service nor did we expect it. Only complaint is the heaviness of the doors that would automatically close behind you. The sound of doors slamming in the middle of the night would carry in the tiled hallway. I blame this on inconsiderate guests.

Food: Decent but the RIU Palace Cabo was much better. Great breakfast buffet. Try the cappuccino. As previously stated we emailed the resort ahead of time and made two dinner reservations. All other reservations are made at noon in the lobby bar up to three days in advance. No problem getting reservations. Krystal was the standout restaurant. We ate here twice. The Mexican restaurant was good. Buffet good. Lunch was adequate. No poolside BBQ which we’ve experienced at other resorts. We enjoyed dinner at two other establishments in town to experience some local culture. Sur and Cenacola. Both were excellent.

Beach: Oustanding. Sadly after our last stay (five years previous) the beach was wiped out by a hurricane. It’s back and better then ever! No problem securing a lounge chair under a palm tree. Didn’t have to get up early to play the towel game. Beautiful turquoise water. Perfect for swimming- not too rough, sandy bottom, no seaweed. Went for a walk every morning. Even pit stopped at few other resorts for a refreshing beverage. Look at all the other resorts on the beach and you’ll see the Riu Palace Riviera Maya is the nicest. A few vendors on the beach but they never hassled you. Borrow the complimentary snorkel gear and grab some bread from the buffet. When facing the ocean, turn right and walk past the last resort (Sandos). There is a reef about 50 feet from shore in 15 ft deep water. Tons of tropical fish. We took a hobie cat out a few times. Amazing. We would sit on a lounge chair at night with a bottle of champagne and enjoy the sound of the waves.

Pool: Gorgeous. Pool was great for a refreshing dip. Looked like the towel game was in full swing reserving loungers early in the AM. Didn’t bother us as the beach is one of the nicest in the world. Who wants to sit beside a pool all day? Can do that at home.

Bars: Swim up bar was busy. Only complaint is people leaving their ten year old kids there all day unsupervised. We brought Bubba Kegs from home thus preventing numerous trips back to the bar or having to wait servers to come around. We tipped generously and received excellent service. If you feel the drinks are watered down, tell them. They’ll put more alcohol in them. No problem. The lobby bar had a decent crowd at night. Perfect for grabbing a bottle of champagne or an after dinner drink.

Playa del Carmen/ 5th Avenue: The number one reason to stay in this area of Mexico. A 5-minute-$7-cab-ride (non negotiable) or a 20 minute walk in the sweltering heat. We went every night after dinner. It’s a pedestrian only roadway lined with bars, restaurants, cafes, clothing and jewelry stores. Majority of businesses are air conditioned which would provide welcome relief. Lots to see and do. Tons of tourists. Great to experience the local culture. Police presence everywhere. They know tourism is their bread and butter. Very safe. We ate here twice. Sur and Cenacola. Both excellent. Taxis are plentiful.

Resort Property: Impeccably maintained. Never utilized the gym (on vacation). Never was around to experience any of the night time entertainment. Service was excellent. If you tip they’ll remember you and bend over backwards to please. Beautiful open square courtyard which would have different activities each night: craft and jewelry vendors, a guy playing a Spanish guitar, casino night. Free WiFi in the lobby but it is slow and sometimes difficult to get connected. Grab a drink at the bar and check your email.

Go with an open mind. Relax. You’re on vacation. Not everything will go smoothly. Don’t sweat the small stuff and be that obnoxious, arrogant tourist that everyone loathes. A few bucks in tips goes a long way. These people make a pittance. If you can’t afford to bring 100 US $1 dollar bills for tips then you shouldn’t go on vacation. If you want a true 5-star experience book the Four Seasons and pay double the price. Never did any tours this time as they chew up your whole day. Bring sunscreen from home. It is very expensive in the gift shop.

We would recommend this resort and stay here again. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
40 Thank bedhead57g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nashville
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2012

We booked this hotel because it was all inclusive and had a variety of 7 different restaurants. If I had done more research I would have stayed at a different resort. The all inclusive aspect is a bit misleading and I will explain why.

The equipment is all inclusive, but not the full use of the equipment. We were able to get the equipment for snorkeling but was only allowed to snorkel within a confined area at the beach, limited to about 50 yards in length and 20 yards in width, this area has no fish or coral to view, so quite pointless. Other all inclusive resorts we have stayed at actually take you out on snorkeling trips at no cost. To go out on a trip would have cost at a minimum of $39 pp.

The 7 restaurants are not all inclusive in the sense that you can go and eat at these restaurants at any time of the day for any meal. Only 2 of the restaurants were this way and they were the buffet meals. The other 5 required reservations which could only be made between the hours of 12-3pm, which we had trouble with since we were on excursions during these times, and there were no exceptions to this rule.

The staff was hit and miss in attentiveness and politeness. The front desk and bell hops were exceptional in their service but the bartenders and service people were not so much. I would go to a bar and be the only one there and would have to wait for the bartenders to finish their conversations before being attended to. Overall service was quite disappointing.

The beach was very nice and well kept, they actually bury the seaweed to keep it nice and clean.

The room was well kept and good in size. The tv was old and small. The shower was great. The bed was big but the pillows were quite bad.

The area of the hotel was very nice and the grounds well kept. The events that they had were fun including fake casino games, occasional vendors for shopping, and dancing to name a few.

The only benefit to staying at a Riu resort in my opinion is that they allow you to visit the other Riu resorts at no cost and even allow you to eat at the other resort restaurants, except for dinner, you cannot have dinner at the other resorts.

In conclusion, the beach, the room, and the area were nice but the services and restaurants were poor which is what we looked forward to the most.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
14 Thank grierju
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northeast Missouri
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2012

We travelled from February 9-16, 2012. We flew out of St Louis on Frontier Airlines. This was our first time flying Frontier. We opted to pay thru Apple for the extra leg room which was $20.00 per person. It was worth the price. You received your lunch box as well as two alcoholic drinks. I can't same enough good about Frontier. They have televisions in front of each seat. We did the non-stop transfers to our hotel. We had to wait about an45 min to an hour before a taxi came to take us to the hotel. We Checking in at the hotel was a breeze. Our room was not large but very nice. We were in room 3069 and it overlooked the courtyard. The beer of choice is DosEquis. It was always cold. If you want the topshelf alcohol, you have to ask for it. The food was very good. We ate at the Steak restaurant and the Japaense. Both were very good. The steak was very tender at the Steak restaurant. My husband wore jeans and a collared shirt and did not have any problems getting into the restaurants. It is about a 20 minute walk on the beach to Playa Del Carmen. The food at the buffet was very good. We would definitely return. The grounds at the resort are very well maintained. Free internet wifi in the lobby or you can pay $8.00 for an hour in the sportsbar. The service was very good. If you needed anything, they would be there in 5 to 10 minutes. The weather was good but the evenings were a bit cool so a sweater might be necessary.

Room Tip: Our room was 3069 and it overlooked the courtyard. The rooms a little closer to the ocean have a be...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Stand-Alone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
detroit
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2012

My husband and 2 kids, ages 7 and 10 stayed at Riu Palace RM 2/18-2/25/12. This was our third trip to the area in 3 years. We all loved the resort and its location. You will not find a nicer beach, with beautiful warm water, and plenty of chairs in both sun and shade. The food was very good. On Sunday night the buffet served grilled jumbo shrimp and lobster tail that was phenomenal. Generally, the buffet food is better than that at the restaurants. We ate at the Japanese restaurant which was our favorite, as well as Krystal, which was good, not great. Drinks at the resort were very good, and you can always get top shelf liquor if you ask. We found the wine to be drinkable, not good, but not bad either. The room was always very clean and comfortable. Beds a bit small and very firm. They gave us a rollaway bed, as the four of us (and we are thin people) would not have fit in 2 double beds comfortably. We had an upgraded junior superior suite with an extra large balcony overlooking the plaza on the second floor. The service at the resort, from the front desk staff, waiters, housekeeping, EVERYONE was outstanding. Luigi, who is part of the entertainment staff looked after my 10 year old son and some other boys he met, without making them feel like they were being looked after. He even ate lunch with them, and kept them entertained playing soccer, volleyball, ping pong, darts, and bocce ball, all of which are located on the beautiful beach. Many of the staff went out of their way to make a connection with their customers. We were able to use the resorts complimentary boogie boards and kayaks for one hour a day. Contrary to other reviews, we found the pool to be clean and warm. Most days I did reserve chairs by 7am, otherwise the pool loungers were taken, and I wanted to be able to watch over my kids as they swam, since there are no lifeguards. There were always open chairs on the beach. The entertainment in the theater at night was fair, with the Michael Jackson show standing out as the best. I would've been happy to go to bed early, but each night our kids insisted on going to the theater. Overall, this was an outstanding family vacation. I highly recommend Riu Palace RM!

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
10 Thank almostforty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 February 2012

I stayed with my boyfriend at Riu Palace, the service was superb, great amenities, great staff, beautiful hotel and amazing beach!!! I would highly recommend to stay at this hotel, especially if its your first time in Mexico,great location, it is also very close to Playa del Carmen.
I stayed at other hotels at Riviera Maya and this one is the best!!!

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 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?
8 Thank Anna S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya
Address: Av Xaman-Ha Mza 9 y 10 Lote 1 Int.Fracc. | Fase II Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#20 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#27 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#29 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya 4*
Number of rooms: 400
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Riviera Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Riu Riviera Maya
Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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