Now that I have your attention - there were NO complaints. We stayed from 1/25/12 - 2/4/12 in room 3006 and absolutly loved it. After staying at Secrets Maroma last year and many other nice places over the last 20 years we would rate this place above any other. This is going to be a long review but I will try to break it up into sections.
Rooms and layout of Casita sections - All of the non-member rooms have the same layout and the same ammenities. Sec. 2500, 2600 and 2700 are all basic casitas both up and down with 1 level individual casitas on both ends. In all ground level casitas and individual casitas you have a little less privacy then you do on the second floor (this applies to all sec.) These 3 sections do not have a lazy river or any swim outs but all have been updated with I pod stations and a flat screen tv's.In my opinion none of these units have a good ocean view but they are the units closest to the main section of the Royale. Sec. 2800, 2900 and 3000 have the lazy river with swimouts on the bottom and basic casitas on top. Sec, 29 and 30 have individual casitas on both ends and sec 30 has presidential suites on both ends. The best views from these 3 sections come from the 2 second floor units on both ends of the horseshoe. We were in unit 3006 with unit 3005 on the very end and we had a great ocean view and view from above onto the presidential suite pool. Sec. 3100 and 3200 have swim out units on the bottom and infinity pools on the second floor. 3100 is open to anyone and 3200 is members only. Most of the second floor units in these 2 sections have good views because they are new and the vegetation has not grown to full height.
Suggestions - All sections have swim up pool bars so don't be concerned about getting drinks :-) If you want to be close to main hotel go 25-27 - If you want lazy river (this connects all swim outs to pool bar) go to 28-31 - If you want infinity pool go to 31. We stayed in 3006, a 2nd flr basic casita and would not have swapped it for any other room and we looked at a lot of rooms thanks to our concierge extraordinaire, Allen. Swim out was not important to us but view was and it was awesome.
Food - What I call goumet is when I go to a fancy restaurant and spend $200+ on meal, drinks and a tip. That being said did I have any gourmet meals here. No but close. Did I have some of the best meals I have had in Mexico? Yes. We stayed at Secrets Maroma last year, Secrets Capri a few years ago and The Royal Playa del Carmen 2 times and overall this was by far the best food and service we have had at any all inclusive. What I call gormet meal on vacation is I sit down and have spicy chicken wrap at gormet corner or a great meal at Kampai and when I get up I say WOW that was great. Out of 30 meals we had in 11 days I would say that 25 were WOW and 5 were OK.
Suggestions - Breakfast, Kampai you can not go wrong we ate here 8 of 10 mornings, this is sit down and is great. Cocotal 2 times and this is the fastest omelet line you will ever see, great buffet. Lunch, How can you eat this much? Kampai very good, Hamburg cart just OK, Las Olas (sec. 31) Wow spicy chicken wrap and do your warm up with the guacamole salsa and chips. The waiter said no calories in the guacamole so we usually got 2 servings. I gained 5 pounds but the waiter wouldn't lie to me would he? Dinner, Kampai again great, D'Italia Casita 3 of 4 great. Tip - Get in the section that Carlos is serving (even if you have to wait) he is worth waiting for and ask him for tips on what is good that night, if you follow his lead you will be very happy, La Isla very good ask for fondue menu and get the cheese with bread to dip. Sorry I can not tell you about the other restaurants because eating 3 times a day was already too much.
Drinks - At this point in this review I need one. If the drinks are not strong enough the 2nd time you order that is your fault because you did not tell them extra whatever after the first one.
Suggestion - Jack Daniels on the rocks and don't give me too many rocks worked just fine for me. The best beach drink we had was a Malibu punch, It had Malibu coconut rum settled on the bottom and on top I think it was oj, pineapple juice and cranberry. Go to sec 31 bar they know how to make it. Wine, I am afraid that the fine wine drinkers are going to have more whine here then they want. We drank a couple glasses of house wine and the best you could say is that they were OK. We did not buy any wine because they seemed very pricey.
Beach - This is the weak spot of the resort and if beach is important you have already moved on. In my opinion the beach was fine and the great part was that the volleyball net was high and tight (come on you knew I was going here at some point) and sand good to play on. V-ball every day at 11am and 4pm and we had some great games and some ok games but bottom line it was beach volleyball. Also on the beach you meet Karelya (Kerry) who is from the entertainment or some other section. She is the cuttest and sweetest girl on the beach. If she says do you want to play v-ball with me and be careful because I am only a girl, you better bring your A game.
Helpful Info - If you have trouble getting in touch with people at the hotel before you go here are 3 e-mails that will help - email@example.com for Jose Carlos Vasquez Casita Mgr - firstname.lastname@example.org for Francisco Jorge Gen Mgr Royale - email@example.com for Andrew Cumming Residential Mgr Royale.
Bring along a small flashlight for restaurants and stairs to room.
ANY and I do mean any issue or question you have with your room and/or stay go to your concierge and it will be fixed, If they don't know about it they can't fix it.
You are going to be eating and drinking more and different then you do back home, bring some pepto type product, you may not need it, but if you do!
Unhappy guests - The person who wrote the review on 1/30/12 if they had gone to the concierge would have had the questions fixed or explained and they had not even given the resort a chance to fix them, they were still there. A great resort never has no problems but is a great resort when you tell them of a problem and they fix it. This place will.
Concierge - You may have caught a hint is this review that I thought the concierges were great, they were. If you can get into sec.30 then go for it because the concierges are Allen, Fransico and Leisy (Lacy) and they are the best of the best. In fact they are so good that if you were to ask Allen to stand on his head outside your room in the morning he would do it. Allen you didn't think you would escape my helpful hints did you
To Allen, Fransico and Leisy thank you very much for making this a very special time for us.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- El dorado casitas royale, one of conde nast traveler readers’ top 100 hotels in the world and a AAA four diamond resort, is the pinnacle of romantic seaside luxury.Nestled along the beach in a separate, secluded area within El Dorado Royale on Mexico’s Riviera Maya, El Dorado Casitas Royale by Karisma is an adults only resort designed for romance. A superb array of amenities and services makes this an unrivaled destination for romantic getaways, weddings, honeymoons, and anniversaries. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- El Dorado Casitas Royale, By Karisma Hotel Riviera Maya