We stayed at the Riviera side of the Princess hotels from April 11 – 18. With Airtransat. I would recommend bringing some food on the plane. Our flight left around 4:30pm and we arrived at the hotel around 10pm. They supplied a light snack and by the time we arrived at the hotel and checked in we were starving. The dinner buffet closes at 10:30pm. Room was jr. suite deluxe number 8123 on the second floor looking out on the grounds, no pool view. No problems with cleaning of room or bar restock. It was done everyday. We were happy to be close to the lobby because the a la carte restaurants and buffets are located there and in the evenings we hung out at the large lobby bar playing games. The Riviera side is bordered by construction but the noise was just during the day and we used earplugs for early morning noise. Some construction dust but hardly any mosquitoes on our side. The Sunset side is bordered by mangroves and I think that is why there are more mosquitoes. Another plus to being by the lobby are the computers. The Transat office has 2 computers that are available to use. (As a side benefit, if you happen to need an extra washroom in cases of emergency, just run to the lobby washroom. It came in handy one day).
Resort: The resort is very modern looking with beautiful marble everywhere. It was easily the largest we have stayed at, some may like this but I felt a bit overwhelmed by the size and amount of people. I couldn’t wear most of the shoes I brought because of the walking, but I don’t think this is too much of a problem because this was the only exercise we got. Also, we went with another couple and because of this brought 2-way radios to contact them around the resort, which was a great convenience.
Food: The Japanese restaurant was very entertaining sitting at the cooking table, but this must be specifically reserved. We didn’t do this ahead of time but the host asked us to wait 10 minutes and if they have any “no-shows” we could get the table in their place, which is exactly what happened and well worth it. Both veal choices at the Italian restaurant were excellent and by far our favorite of all the restaurants . The lamb chops at the International were also very good but the ostrich was terrible, prepared like meatballs but tasted more like liverwurst with bad seasoning. I have had great ostrich back home many times and this was not. A bit disappointed in the Mexican, the food tasted good but was not hot, however that could be hit or miss. The buffets are like other resorts we have stayed at. Nice selection but can get a bit boring at times. Between the two main buffet restaurants is an outdoor lounge. We picked up cappuccino’s there for breakfast and brought them into the buffet instead of drinking the coffee served.
Beach: I would recommend water shoes for the few spots of rocks in the water.
Tulum & Cenotes: We rented a car one day. Found a better deal online so the resort rentals gave us extra time with the car to compensate. Tulum is about a one hour drive from the resort. It was very interesting and beautiful but recommend going early in the morning or later in the evening when the sun is not so hot. There is very little shade. Also recommend taking the trolley to the ruins, it is only 2$ but in the scorching sun we were happy to get a break.
Drove to Grand Cenotes, which is another 5 minutes away and swam in the underwater cave system. This was a highlight. They charge $8 to enter and another $10 to rent snorkel, vest and flippers. Bring snacks and water with you.
Playa Del Carmen: they have free shuttle buses that leave at 10am, 11am, noon, 1pm and 6pm. You must reserve them ahead and get a bus ticket.
Leaving: Have your flight info, eticket ready for the airport bus, they want to check that you are supposed to be on that bus and not trying to get a free ride to the airport or on the wrong one.
We had a very nice time and are sure others would too. I would not return to this resort simply because we like trying others.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa is located on the stunning Riviera Maya, just three kilometers from the famous Playa Del Carmen, in beautiful surrounds, with large and spacious natural parks and the delight of a good tropical weather. Besides our fascinating beach, renowned for the clear water and splendid sea beds, typical of the east end of the Yucatan Peninsula, the Hotel invites you to discover the huge wealth of the archaeological remains of the Maya culture in this area. After crossing the spacious lobby the splendid “Paseo de los Dioses” is reached, which invites the costumers to discover the charm of the hotel. It is a gift to our senses to enjoy all our facilities that can be found to our left and right on the way to the marvelous beach awaiting for everybody at the way of the pleasant stroll.Opened in December 2007, Grand Riviera Princess offers 674 fully equipped rooms with a range of services that give the clients a variety of possibilities to choose from: Junior Suite, Junior Suite Deluxe (some with direct pool access), Platinum Suites and Laguna Villa Suites (ideal for the most romantic honeymoon).A fascinating Spa is offered to all the clients, and the most complete activity program during day and night. A range of services in the varied and international selection of top quality food provide the perfect counterpoint when sharing moments of peace and calm with excellent meals in beautiful and inviting specially decorated surrounds, some of which are by the sea. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort And Spa
- Grand Riviera Princess All Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Grand Riviera Princess Hotel
- Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico