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“Fantastico! Mazatlan is SAFE!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Emerald Bay

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Hotel Riu Emerald Bay
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Av. Sabalo-Cerritos #3404 zona costera cerritos | Nuevo Mazatlán - Sinaloa, Mazatlan 82110, Mexico   |  
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Special Offer
SPRING DEALS + KIDS FREE
Ranked #13 of 76 Hotels in Mazatlan
Edmonton, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Fantastico! Mazatlan is SAFE!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2011

My daughter and I just returned from a 7-day Sunwing vacation at the Riu. The hotel amenities were fantastic!. All the staff were warm and welcoming. We felt safe and relaxed from the time of check-in at the sports bar to the last lunch and cocktail at the bar. Some staff members will go out of their way to make your stay pleasant. Armando, from the animation team made sure we knew of all the activities and personally invited us to join-in. Not over bearing, just enough attention that the guest felt special. Another individual was Jesus at the outside bar...the man is amazing...he can make any cocktail and make it just like your favorite bartender at home. The manager of the Asian Bamboo restaurant, where you wish you could eat at every night,, was European-style frendly and attentive. This man knows customer service! One fellow who name I have forgotten helped us get into the Mexican, Tobasco, restaurant even though we were 30 minutes late. The food at Tobasco was the best Mexican that we have had in our last 5 Mexican vacations. I lost a diamond earring at the Tobassco restaurant or some where outside of it. I actually am not too sad because this vacation was a real diamond.
IMPORTANT NOTE FOR SUNWING/SIGNATURE TRAVELLERS:
The Sunwing flights into Mazatlan, you need to understand, provide the exit transportation for departing Sunwing travellers. So, if you are leaving at 8:30 pm, like we were, expect to be shuttled to the airport at 3:30 in the afternoon!

Room Tip: All the rooms have a view. No need to up-grade!
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  • Stayed April 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,864 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (498)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Niagara, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2011

First time to Mazatlan...recommend a room close to ground floor...we were on 4th and not once were we successful in getting an elevator. Need to ask for bottled water daily. Took a golf cart cabby into the town and in 3.5 hrs we saw everything we wanted including shopping and amazing views. Asked for a bakery stop and he found a great one in the Golden Zone. Good shopping there too. There is a cafe...Loony ? past Playa Bruia (resto) that allows you to make free international calls...found that out the day we were leaving but a good tip for future trips. Playa Bruia resto ok for a snack. This resort is quite a way from the town so difficult to get into town if you're looking for night life. Also did the sunset cruise and enjoyed it...but the snack was dreadful. Overall food experience very bad. Also did not like how big and busy the hotel was...felt like I was in a zoo almost daily. For those three reasons I would not go back there...but beach and room views (all ocean view) are amazing. There is a spa on site but I did not try it. Internet is not free but is very fast. Apparently, if you have an iphone or BB with wi-fi emails would be free in the internet area. Another tip I got on the way home.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mississauga, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2011

Just returned from a week stay ending April 22nd, 2011 and we went with friends for a change.
The positives - the Hotel is brand new which means the rooms are pleasant as well as the facilities. The spa and gym sit outside the hotel and require a reservation to use but are good. Strange, there were no tennis courts on the grounds so we had to book a cab to another facility in order to play and it was not cheap.
Check in was efficient. Maid service, with extensive tipping, is good. The safe did not work on arrival but they fixed it relatively quickly. We don't care about hard beds and pillows. There are three specialty restaurants - Steak, Mexican and Japanese. Japanese is buffet - nothing special about the food. We never were able to try the Steak - see below for why.
Bar staff and front desk staff are pleasant.
The rooms are oceanview - very nicely done Riu!

The negatives - There are a lot of drawbacks some of which have nothing to do with hotel itself.
First, the ocean water and pool - the Pacific is freezing, the pools in the hotel are unusually cold as well (they could use a heater in the pools). We like to swim but other than short dips it was basically unswimmable. The Pacific waves were very rough as well - the staff never have to change the red flag. so if you expect to swim forget it.
Second, we booked through Sunwing at the Hotel the Deer Island tour which boasted stunning snorkeling - we were game despite the frigid waters. When we arrived at Deer Island we discovered there was no snorkeling because of the city pollution coming from across the Bay and general murkiness of the water. Even without the pollution we could see there was no snorkeling to be had as the conditions did not exist for it. We demanded our money back and received it.
Third, the hotel requires your passport and to fill out forms to present your Riu card and to change money every single time - this is very annoying and inconvenient when the purpose is to tip their staff. Which sequays nicely into the fourth complaint.
Fourth, lining up at 7:00 am for an entire hour to book a speciality restaurant is one thing. But then showing up 15 minutes late for your 9:00 reservation at the Steak house because the front desk held you up changing money and poor elevator service and then being denied access by Alfonso and Gustavo is quite another. What that conveyed to the group of us is that is ok to burn our valuable vacation time but don't delay them by a few minutes. They know about their poor elevator service - everyone complains about it.
Fifth, for an area so rich in tuna, red snapper, sea bass and shrimp there was very little seafood in the main buffet or specialty restaurants and if there was it was dramatically overcooked. We went down the beach to Mr. Lionos and had excellent seafood there which was cooked perfectly. Mr. Lionos also had some inexpensive wines from Argentina which were excellent. The Hotel wine is undrinkable and of course not being a Palace there is no champagne made available.
Sixth, our party could drink almost anything. We had to order triples and quadruples to even taste the alchohol in the drinks.
Seventh, the vendors on the beach directly in front of the hotel are too much for us weary travellers. Enough said.
Lastly, it is true they fill the hotel with locals. Not a problem but then you have massive line-ups and the locals then eat their food by the pool and drinks and food end up in the pool. Impossible to get elevators as well - you have to experience this 20 minute wait to appreciate it.
Final word - would we go back? In a word NO - there are far better Rius in the world in locations which are far more attractive. Also not so sure we ever book on Sunwing again - really poor service overall but I won't get into that.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2011

Our bartender Gabrial was simply the best. So much fun, helpful, and knowledgeable.

We didn't travel with Apple Vacations - but the on-site travel consultant for Apple Vacations, Gustav was marvelous. If he and his level of client service is indicative of the company I would travel with them for sure.

Our Hotel was clean. The staff pleasant and helpful. All the folks at the front doors and the gates were extremely helpful in getting us transportation.

The food at the buffet was a little repetitive and the desserts somewhat flavorless - beautiful but not very flavorful. The food at the themed restaurants was good - I enjoyed the steak restaurant and my husband really enjoyed the Mexican restaurant - Tobasco. And my favorite dessert was the deep fried ice cream at the Asian restaurant! The liquor in the rooms was like paint thinner - so it was better to go to the bars to get the better brands. The swim up bar was fun.

The beach was beautiful and the sunsets were to die for. There were a number of horses on the beach - but you never knew it - they were kept so clean!

I would thoroughly recommend staying at the Riu at off peak times. This hotel is at the Northern perimeter of Mazatlan - about 15 minutes to the Golden Zone and 1/2 an hour from Old Mazatlan.

Room Tip: All rooms are oceanview so don't pay for it.
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2011

My family of three with an eight year old son have just come back from five nights Spring Break at this hotel.
It was a great vacation because the hotel provides thoughtful ranges of services to everyone of all ages.

For activities and entertainments, they had a weekly schedule of outdoor/indoor activities, for adults and children. In addition, there were great shows like Mama Mia, Las Vegas that performed pretty well.
There were also five travel agents at their tables in the lobby area to help you to book extra activities/tours. The beach was great even though the wave was a little bit strong with undertow. However, we just used common sense to play safely and my son could enjoy hours every day at the beach. Life guards were also very helpful there to help and warn people in case.

For food, it was more than enough to serve everyone. In my personal opinions, there were a lot of variety food to choose from.
For the services, I admire the people working here. I observed and noted that all of them, no matter what their professional positions, were working with great customer service attitudes. They seemed to work very hard and loved their jobs to perform their duty. And in fact, I think they are the main factor to bring customer satisfaction, thank you and thank you.
For safety, again in my personal opinion, my family felt very safe here at the hotel. On the street, I occasionally saw army and police men in patrol.
One thing to note here was that I did not feel comfortable with the Timeshare People at the airport. They approached us with a strong tactic trying to get us to participate in their program. I understand that they have their jobs to do. But it was not a right time when we just get out of the airport and eager to settle down at the hotel first. I eventually to thank and said no to them.

I would recommend this hotel chain to my family members and friends. And I also would like to thank all other reviewers to provide their reviews on tripadvisor, which had helped me to have a general idea about any location/hotel before I go there. As a result, I take turn to write my own review after visiting. And by doing that, I feel a very good sense of travel community here at tripadvisor website.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hamilton
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2011

this is a beautiful resort. the pools,beach,restaurants and staff are the best-but-there are too many locals renting at this resort and they are rude and in a hurry to be everywhere at once. they croud the bars and elevators and let their kids run rampant with little or no supervision. this was our 20th riu resort in 12 years and it is the only one that we will never go back to.

Room Tip: all rooms face ocean-pay only for higher floors
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
edmonton_travlers
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2011

Just returned from the Riu Emerald Bay in Mazatlan. We were there April 8- 15. Booked the trip as a last minute deal. My fiancée and I have never been to Mazatlan and all we can say is wow. If we had planned the vacation 6 months in advance, we could not have planned a better trip. I have no complaints about the Hotel. The beach was beautiful white sand, the food was amazing, beds were comfortable, rooms were clean and service was top notch. The pillows are a little skimpy, but a call to the front desk and Viola... more pillows in 10 minutes. Ignore the negative reviews. If you book here, you will not regret it....unless you over do the tequila poppers in the sports bar ;)

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Emerald Bay

Address: Av. Sabalo-Cerritos #3404 zona costera cerritos | Nuevo Mazatlán - Sinaloa, Mazatlan 82110, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Sinaloa > Mazatlan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Mazatlan
#6 Spa Hotel in Mazatlan
#8 Romantic Hotel in Mazatlan
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Mazatlan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Emerald Bay 3.5*
Number of rooms: 716
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Opening summer 2009 * 12 km / 7.45 Miles from Mazatlan, overlooking the Pacific Ocean * Located on Playa Las Brujas beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 20-story main building * Surrounded by 13.500 M2 / 16.15 Sq. Yards of lush gardens * 10 km / 6.2 Miles from various shops * 12 km / 7.45 Miles from Mazatlan * 32 km / 19.87 Miles from the airport * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Emerald Bay Mazatlan

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