Just got back to Denver late Jan 15th. We've been to Cancun/Playacar about 8 times over the past 15 years and have stayed at 3 Palace's, to include the one in Cabo and Las Animas in Cancun. This was the best Palace we've stayed at by far, followed by the one in Cancun, with Cabo a distant last. I could not agree more with illinifann's comments--it's as if I wrote them. We did find, however, that the buffet food was as good as if not better than the speciality restaurants. We also found the wait staff to be a bit better at Don Julian (buffet)--they really worked hard to ensure you had everything you desired in prompt fashion. The only complaint I would raise was the quality of the wine--poor compared to Las Animas but much better than Cabo's (worst wine we have had at any RIU). The hotel "remodel" was much better than expected given some of the comments posted late last year. Regarding in-room privacy--the shower has a large "frosted" European shower door--you can literally walk into it fully clothed, undress, shower, dry off, and then get dressed again, without fear of getting seen by anyone in the room--we Americans are really hung up about nudity but I fully appreciate the concern when there are children in the room. The dimensions of the shower surprised us as they are about 4 feet by 4 feet with recessed shelves holding clean towels or your clothes--they don't get wet unless you get carried away with the hand-held shower--I used the overhead shower option--fabulous--and we had lots of water pressure and hot water. Regarding some earlier comments about lack of lounge chairs on the beach--there were sufficient numbers when we were there. We visited the RIU Yucatan--we have stayed there 3 times previously--and all agreed that the relatively small price increase at the Palace was well worth it. (We had forgotten how large the Yucatan was compared to the Palace). One last note regarding transportation to/from the airport. This was the first time we arranged to pay for "private transportation" to the resort. We have not had much success with previous Apple trips getting us from the airport to the resort and back over our 8 trips--a "milk-run" of sorts (i.e., stopping at many resorts before arriving at our resort). It was not worth the extra $100. Another couple from Denver took the Apple shuttle and arrived 5 mins after we did. On the return trip their shuttle left 5 mins before our private van--same type of van, by the way--and arrived 15 mins before we did. It appears that they are using more small vans like they did in the 1990's rather the the very large buses they began using in the early 2000's.
In closing, this was our best RIU experience to date: Great staff, wonderful facilities (Gym has new equipment too), good food and spectacular weather (ave temp was 85 degrees F.). One last tip--if you can fly on Tuesdays--the package price was several hundred dollars cheaper--all airfare driven. Enjoy!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located on the Yucatan peninsula, 3 km / 1.9 Miles from Playa del Carmen * Within the Playacar resort, along with the Riu Palace Riviera Maya, Riu Yucatan, Riu Playacar and the ClubHotel Riu Tequila hotels * 2-storey building * Surrounded by 20,000 m2 / 24,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens * Located on the beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 200 m / 650 feet from Mexican Street * 55 km / 34 miles from Cancun Int???L. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Diners ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Palace Mexico Hotel
- Riu Palace Mexico Playa Del Carmen
- Riu Palace Playa Del Carmen
- Riu Palace Mayan Riviera
- Riu Playa Del Carmen
- Mexico Palace Riu
- Riu Mexico
- Rui Palace Mexico
- Hotel Riu Palace Mexico Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen