RIU Palace Riviera Maya Reviews

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RIU Palace Riviera Maya  

Av Xaman-Ha Mza 9 y 10 Lote 1 Int. Fracc. Fase II Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico

"Amazing RIU Palace hotel in the heart of the Mayan Riviera on the coast of the Caribbean Sea"
Posted by: Lance on Jan 23, 2012
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RIU Palace Riviera Maya Reviews
RIU Palace Riviera Maya Pictures and Information
RIU Palace Riviera Maya Mayan Riviera Mexico

of 77 Hotels in Mayan Riviera

User rating 3.7

Based on 6 reviews

RIU Palace Riviera Maya Information

Opened February 2006 - This luxurious resort, the latest addition to the Riu family in Playa del Carmen, is the ultimate in pampered first-class service.

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RIU Palace Riviera Maya Reviews

RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 3.7 of 5 6 reviews
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"Amazing RIU Palace hotel in the heart of the Mayan Riviera on the coast of the Caribbean Sea"

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Lance  on Jan 23, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2011 | Leisure | Family and Kids
612 people found this review helpful

The Riu Palace Riviera Maya is hands down the nicest Riu Palace hotel I've been to and I am comparing it to the Riu Palace Las Americas in Cancun as well as the Riu Palace Mexico in neighbouring Playacar. I have stayed at all of these hotels.

The Riu Palace Riv. Maya is the newest of these 3 "Palace" level hotels built in late 2005 and has everything for everyone. Any negative reviews you hear about this particular hotel are extremely far fetched and are probably the result of our tourists and not the hotel staff.

The food on the property in both the buffets and a-la-carte restaurants is amazing - the best! The hotel staff - meaning the man that greets you at the door - the front counter staff - the cleaning staff - the restaurant staff - the bar staff - and the entertainment staff are by far the best staff you could assemble for a resort of this size.

The nice thing about this resort is that even when the hotel is at 80% capacity you wouldn't even know it since the property is so large and there are a few giant pools, and huge beach space with tons of loungers to choose from.

All in all this was by far the best vacation we have been on for our family of 4! Great for adults and kids! Having such a huge real estate footprint makes this even more enjoyable with much more to do and lots of space to stretch out.

Room Number:

My wife and I and two children (ages 1 and 3) travelled to Playa del Carmen from Ottawa, Canada for a two week vacation in May 2011 staying at the Riu Palace Riv. Maya. We booked with Sunwing Vacations and from the moment we arrived at the hotel we recieved 5-star service. We asked if we could stay on the ground level of the hotel since we had two small children and they said no problem at all. We stayed in room 0059 facing the interior courtyard and fountains. Here is a tip: Even though we didn't pay for a "superior junior suite"; those that face the inside of the property - we upgraded at no additional cost - since they had the room. The hotel staff are nice this way! We had originally booked the cheaper "junior suite" facing the exterior of the property. Even though we were only in our room to sleep - upgrading to a superior jr. suite is worth it.

Our room was very nice and very clean, absolutely nothing bad to say about it. Did not see any bugs, did not have any bad odors - room was nice with a nice balcony - had a great view overlooking the beautiful gardens and fountains. The fact that this property only has 3 main levels for rooms makes it visually much nicer - since the palm trees block much of the structures - it's not like some hotels the are so tall they just overpower everything.

Restaurants and Bars:
There was a breakfast buffet with a beautiful choice of foods and the ability to sit inside or outside on the patio. For lunch we usually went to the area beside the pool/beach - it was fantastic too - lots of choice! And for dinner we would reserve an a la carte meal. There are a bunch of a la carte restaurants, such as steakhouse, traditional mexican, japanese, fusion, bolivian and they are all fantastic! Staff were extremely kind. Always going out of their way to accommodate our family with two young children. The bars were great, they had one in the lobby seen right when come through the front door, then another one off to the side in another room sort of like a games room, as well as a pool bar and an entertainment bar. One of the unique things about this property is that right before dinner you can go and sit in the courtyard around this huge water fountain and the staff would come to you and you could order a drink and just relax and watch the people before going into your reserved a la carte dinner.

Beautiful is an understatement in describing the grounds of this property - these gardens are so well manicured that you would need a magnifying glass to find an imperfection on a blade of grass or palm tree. Every single morning during our 2 week stay the grounds staff would come out and mop up the walkways made of tile. Then you would see grounds staff trimming palm trees etc. The grounds are so well maintained it's better than the nicest magazine cover you'll ever see. The two giant pools (side by side) are very nice - one has a vanashing edge in which you can sit on a ledge and overlook the larger pool down below. They have nice built in tiled loungers in the shallow ends on each side as well as many tables with stools right in the pool near the pool bar. The beach was nicely maintained - clean, with plenty of loungers to choose from. The only "issue" is the fact that vacationers play the "reserve lounger game" by placing a towel or book on a lounger and then never using it. This is no fault of the hotel staff - this is just a case of people being greedy and having no care for others. If you aren't down at the pool before 8am to reserve a spot - you won't get a good spot near the pool plain and simple. It's a game that goes on everywhere and needs a fair resolution.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The animacion/entertainment staff are great - they are fun, energetic, they come out near the pool area for morning excersices around 10am each day and get people going - then they organize activities such as water volleyball or beach volleyball. They also have a little area beside the beach buffet (and steakhouse at night) for kids. It's not big but it's a little hut in which a child can go and draw and play inside and get out of the sun for a little while. The staff regularly included children in the entertainment in the evening before the main attraction events. Although my two children aged 1 and 3 were a little too young to participate in all these events - they still had a great time.
The lobby was huge and a good place to meet and get ready to do something else like take a taxi to Playa del Carmen for a shopping trip. It cost about $10 US to get a taxi from the hotel to start of 5th avenue shopping street. There are other Riu hotels nearby in which you can use the facilities as well. If you "stay" at a Palace level hotel you can "play" at any Riu hotel. You can even hop on a bus on 5th avenue and drive north to Cancun (about 40 minutes) and hang out at the Palace Las Americas.

Other Comments:
Fantastic resort - would highly recommend! Great for kids and adults! Amazing food, nice wide beach, friendly cheerful staff! Perfect 10!

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"An upscale resort at an affordable price"

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  sue & marv  on Oct 23, 2011  >  2 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Oct, 2011 | Business | With Spouse/Partner
611 people found this review helpful

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
October, 2011

Located less than two miles from Playa del Carmen, this imposing hotel has 400 junior suites and suites.

Entertainment / Activities
There were entertainment programs scheduled each night - one for adults and one for children, including some with live music. There were professional acts during the week augmented by talent night and game shows run by the resort’s entertainment staff. We found these shows to be somewhat less than exciting.

Daytime sports and activities included: an air conditioned gym, a small sauna, two co-ed al fresco Jacuzzis, inside the small but full-service Renova spa building. Outside activities include: aerobics classes, tennis, beach and pool volleyball, ping pong, windsurfing, snorkeling, kayaking, catamarans and scuba diving lessons in the pool.

In the Sports Bar, there were pool tables and air hockey (both coin operated) and many TV screens. Computer terminals available with an hourly or daily cost here but wireless access was complementary in the main lobby.

Although we did not see a building dedicated to children’s activities, we did see a child’s pool and playground. Several entertainment staff members were assigned to supervise the children of various ages and there was a posted schedule of activities.

Upscale shops, a beauty salon, a photo kiosk and a medical center were also available.

Every client that we have booked here has enjoyed the resort and its great location. This resort is extremely easy to navigate. Having stayed at many RIU Palace Resorts, we felt at home almost immediately.

We loved the tree-lined beach with complimentary chairs and umbrellas. The swim-up bar at the pool was very convenient and the daily games around it were fun. The beautiful lobby bar area hums with action, music and camaraderie. The stately promenade from the main building to the sea was an incredible walkway. The friendly staff was unbelievably well-trained and the dining experiences were first-rate.

RIU resorts are an important part of our business and we make it our business to listen to our client’s needs and wants.

Sue and Marv

Room Number:

As travel agency owners, we really appreciate a good resort when we stay there. We just had the pleasure of staying at the RIU Palace Riviera Maya, 34 miles south of the Cancun International Airport. RPRM, opened in 2007, is the fifth and final resort in RIU’s Playacar complex.

We breezed through security in the new terminal in less time than any of our eight previous visits. With the completion of the bridge on Highway 307, the drive to Playa del Carmen has been shortened by at least 30 minutes. This resort is a few minutes away from Fifth Avenue, Playa del Carmen’s “hip-strip,” as well as local shopping and it’s nearest sister property, RIU Palace Mexico.

Upon arrival we were met by their elegant doorman/resort greeter, Hector, who is 6’ 4” inches tall and dressed in a brilliant white vested outfit. At 6:30 PM, he announces dinner in 28 languages at the opening of the main restaurant - a mini show not to be missed.

Having been to almost every RIU Palace resort in the Caribbean and Mexico, we have come to expect a gracious, efficient registration procedure and this was one of the best.

We were ushered quickly to a spacious junior suite where we found Paul Gaugin amenities in a double sink, hydro-massage tub bathroom, hair dryer, a comfortable king bed, a small flat screen TV in a sunken sitting area which led to a spacious balcony. There was adequate drawer space and an ample-sized closet with a convenient safe. We enjoyed the evening turn-down service, efficient air conditioning, mini-bar and liquor dispenser, the electric in-room safe and 110V electrical outlets.

Restaurants and Bars:
Dining and Drinking
All of the food, snacks, drinks and cocktails in the hotel’s six restaurants were available free of charge. Room service and at least one bar was available 24 hours a day. There were five bars throughout the property serving domestic and premium alcoholic beverages and cocktails. Pool area waiter service made for convenient relaxation.

RIU’s always elaborate breakfast was offered at the main buffet restaurant. A smaller lunch was available at Chili’s as well as the much more elaborate one at Don Manolo. Wearing our gold wristband from RPRM we could have also eaten breakfast, lunch and snacks at any one of the enormous selection of restaurants and bars at the five RIU hotels.

Dinner is served at the buffet and at five a la carte venues where reservations are required. It is possible to make the reservations between noon and 3 PM and can be made for up to three days in advance.

“Krystal” is their signature fine-dining restaurant and serves “fusion gourmet” cuisine in classy, subdued style. Country club casual is the dress code and the Japanese restaurant called “Yashima.”

“Agave” is their Mexican restaurant and Chili’s doubles as a steak house in the evening. We had a tasty Brazilian “Rodizio-style” dinner at “Botafogo” but found it somewhat noisy and too casual for our taste.

There are only two seatings at the a la carte venues. If you prefer great food prepared fresh, in front of you at several serving stations, use the buffet at Don Manolo.

Other Comments:
We were aware that we were traveling in the wettest month of the year but this was a business trip that we needed to do even in the rain. We always ask our clients many questions, one of which is whether or not beach quality and sunshine are at the top of their list. If the answer is, “We just need to get away to a nice place with good food,” the Riviera Maya in October would be just fine. If the answer is “we have to have a great beach in warm weather,” we send them to a place like this outside of the Yucatan rainy season.

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"Fantastic Vacation Thank you Riu Riviera Maya"

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Patricia  on Oct 20, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Oct, 2011 | Leisure | With friend
666 people found this review helpful

This place is FANTASTIC one of the best trips I have had and I travel at least 2 times a year to different resorts and have stayed at a few Riu's. The employees are fantastic and can not do enough for you. Myself (50), daughter(27) and girlfriend (50) went on a girls week away. (we go every year for a girls week getaway)
The Hotel is spotless and the rooms are a very nice size the three of us stayed in one room with no problem.
The food is very good always something for everyone
The Resort is on what I think is the best part of the beach ....tons of lounge chairs never had a problem getting one. The resort is only a 5 min cab ride to Playa Del Carmen's 5th Ave shopping and tons of great resturants.
The employees are great I mean they did not stop all day and night trying to make our vacation good...Riu you should be proud to have such great employees. I honestly do not understand why someone would complain about this place

Room Number:

Oct 6th ...great check-in. We arrived at 1:00 and lucky us the room was ready!!

Nice size and clean clean clean...

Restaurants and Bars:
The buffet is really good always something for everyone...the specialty resturants were also good

Beach is beautiful (I personaly think it has the best beach) tons of lounge chairs. The pool is big and alot of fun if you want to join in. There is a pool bar area that is really nice...

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The Resorts activities were endless everyday something different and they work so hard to make everyone enjoy themselves. Playa Del Carmens 5th ave is very close you could walk about 20 min of cab about 5 min. We also took the Ferry over to Cozumel for the day and rented a jeep...so fun!! All I can say is this is a great place!! We all agree it was fantastic...

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"Wonderful Vacation"

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Lee  on Dec 11, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Dec, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
680 people found this review helpful

This is a beautiful resort. I don't understand the negative reviews. "You can't satisfy everyone all the time". The food is very good. The rooms are very clean, and the staff is absolutely delightful - they will do everything possible for you to have your vacation as care free as possible. The beach is beautiful. The pool is amazing and the staff who tend bar and deliver drinks are friendly and timely. There are plenty of lounge chairs at both the beach and pool to accomodate guests. Everyone is friendly and can not do enough to help you with any possible problem you may have. This hotel is much better than others(pricier)I have stayed at in Mexico = and I have been in the same area 18 times. A gold star for management and staff. Can't wait to return. What a pleasure!!

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"Never again!! "

RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 1.00 of 5

Posted by:  Mommie  on Jun 22, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jun, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
703 people found this review helpful

Please read below sections.

Your Arrival:
1. 45 min ride from Airport. Was not informed of this and hotel transportation did not include a car seat for my infant. Spent entire ride terrified for the safety of my child.
2. Room was not ready at 6pm. That's right, 6 pm. We were told to wait "20" minutes, 2 hours later at 7pm, the room still wasn't ready but we went inside anyways while the maid finished.

3.While the room was "ok." Had a king sized bed, nice jacuzzi tub and sofa area to watch tv, the view from our room was HORRIBLE. They must have put us in the worst room possible. Our view from our balcony was a factory next door...well the roof of the factory with the gigantic LOUD a/c units on the roof that hummed us to sleep every night.
4. Cleanliness of linens and towels. TERRIBLE. Stains on everything. Looks like someone bleed out on one of the sheets that we had. I just ripped it off the bed and threw it on the floor. One set of sheets we had was soured as well. Talk about a stinky night. Next night the sheets smelled so heavy of bleach my eyes were watering. At least I know they were sanitized?

Restaurants and Bars:
5.Food. The only decent meal was breakfast at the buffet place. When we went down there I had jokingly told my husband that I was afraid that I was going to gain 10 lbs, well I actually LOST 10 lbs because I couldn't eat the food! If it wasn't over salted (which most stuff was...) it had flies on it or it was spoiled tasting. The special (Make a reservation at least 3 days in advance) restaurants were laughable. At best the food was not good and worst it made some of us ill. My husband is upstairs now with a fever and sickness from our meal last night at the "Japanese" restaurant.
6. Room Service. Ok I know it's all inclusive and it's free but how about more than 3 items on the room service menu? One cannot live on ham and cheese, cheese cake and cheese nachos alone. (Especially when your restaurant foods are so poor.)
7. Service. While the waitstaff did their best to help and be prompt about stuff the front desk rather sucked. Our room did not have a room service menu and I called down to the front desk and they said that they would send one up right away. 2 hours later, no menu, so I call down again and 20 mins later I get a menu in GERMAN. So I called down again and apologized but I needed an English menu...I never got the menu. The next day I went down stairs, I figured, hey I would pick it up myself but Noooo they can't do that, the maids have to bring it. 1 hour later I finally got a menu in English. (Of course I found out it wasn't worth it when I saw it had a grand total of like 6 items on it, no joke!) Front Desk drama continues...On night 4 at the hotel hubby and I were awakened at 4am to the sounds of a woman screaming bloody murder, glasses breaking and silverware hitting the tiles out side our door. My mother in law tries to call the front desk for help because this was an all out brawl/fight going on and never got an answer. The next morning we went out and there was blood all over the floor the walls, my mother in laws door...it was everywhere. Looked like a scene from a horror flick. So I went downstairs and asked the front desk if they knew about it and they said "Yes, we are going to clean it." I'm like when is that exactly? Its been there all night and I just had to roll my childs stroller through BLOOD to get to the one elevator in this place!'
They eventually did clean up the blood on the floor at least...about 2 hours later...but the blood spray on the walls was still there when we left this morning!
8. The ONE Elevator that was 400 miles from our room. Yes, one sad elevator that was 40 rooms down from our room (about 1/2 mile hike) that ended up in the dark, scary KITCHEN Of a restaurant that you had to navigate through the DARK on SLICK WET FLOORS to get your child outside into the main plaza. Really seriously? I know it's Mexico but don't they have any handicap laws? Ok forget that, how about a resort so expensive, lets at least have a safe, friendly way to navigate our grounds with a wheelchair or stroller?

Other Comments:

Ok...so that was the bad.


1. The ocean was really pretty. (Though as the other poster mentioned it had some serious undertow problems while we were there. Constant "Red" flags.)
2. The pool was pretty. I didn't find that it smelled funny.
3. The wait staff was 90% friendly and prompt with requests.
4. My sister in laws wedding ceremony was beautiful. I hope she had a good time. At least that was positive.
5. Their piña coladas were awesome.
6. The breakfast buffet especially the coffee and sopapillas.
7. The hotel grounds were really pretty.

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RIU Palace Riviera Maya
User Rating:  RIU Palace Riviera Maya Review: 2.00 of 5

Posted by:  Joel  on Feb 11, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
741 people found this review helpful

My wife and I came to the Riu Palace Riviera Maya for our honeymoon. From the moment we arrived it was apparent that the elegance and luxury was all a facade. We checked in late afternoon and were told that our room was not ready yet. An hour later they finally gave us our room keys and sent us walking blindly through the giant maze of a property. When we found the room we could not have been more disappointed. We Booked a King suite. We got two full size beds pushed together in the middle, like some 1950’s TV show. We then returned to the front desk to straighten out the problem, and were told there was nothing that could be done. After returning to our room in dismay, the front desk had the nerve to call and ask if everything was alright with our room, or if they could do anything for us. We complained about the room, again, and we were told, again, there was nothing that could be done. What a kick in the nuts!
Later, we went to the front desk and requested that some beers and a proper bottle of rum be sent to the room. The man at the desk said it would be done, as he wrote down the order and our room #. I waited, but the order never came. Two hours later there was a knock at the door. No drinks, just a woman asking if we needed more towels. I said “No”, and she asked if there was anything else she could do for us. So I said “Yes, we could use some beer and rum”. She said she could not do that. I was not surprised.
If you are looking for a relaxing, quiet getaway, then go somewhere else. After a long and expensive day of disappointment we decided to take it easy and watch some TV. All we did was watch, because we could not hear anything. All we could hear was the BOOM, BOOM, BOOM of the 1980’s dance music ringing from the courtyard. Thank God it was over by midnight. The collection of Michael Jackson songs made me want to throw myself over the balcony.
At over $300 a night per person we expected more.
Thanks for ruining our honeymoon Riu Palace
Joel Kamins

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