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“Absolutely Fantastic!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas

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Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Av. Camino Viejo a San Jose | Del Cabo KM 4.5 El Medano Ejidal, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #28 of 68 Hotels in Cabo San Lucas
sacramento, ca
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Absolutely Fantastic!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2010

We returned from the RIU Palace in Cabo last night. My husband, as usual, made all the plans. I was swamped w/work and didn't pay much attention to where he had booked us until the night before we left. I spent some time reading reviews and got a bit concerned as it seemed they were either glowing or really panned the hotel on a number of different subjects. Hubbie is really superb at picking places so we both went w/the attitude we try to always have which is to enjoy, roll w/the punches, pick your battles and learn something new.
We were both completely delighted from the moment we arrived. Omar at check in was very helpful [no tip needed to secure a great room] Once we got into our room my husband started his usual wondering if there was a better location so he called Omar and he explained what else was available. We elected to stay put and it ended up having not only a great view but being very conveniently located to where we had to go through out the day.
Yes, there are a lot of beautiful palm trees and they just about block some portion of every room in the house I suspect but we definitely saw the ocean, beach and grounds while enjoying the rustle and sway of the palms. We were on the 3rd story up, only one more higher but in european fashion that was the 2nd floor, same as the lobby. We originally had an ocean front booked and I mean on the ocean but am so glad we decided to save the 500.00 xtra and just go w/an ocean view/front [ not sure what it was as they can get pretty specific in what they call a certain view] back in the body of the hotel. The first 2 nights we were there the surf was extremely high and was booming all night like a canon, spectacular but loud!!! Our sliding door to the balcony rattled when they hit, some people who were right on the ocean said it was so loud they couldnt sleep. This only happens once in a while but it is something to see and is dangerous....

It is a very large complex and we prefer to be closer to whats going on and not way out at the end of some wing even if the view is purported to be "better" Also depending on what side of the complex you are on you could get full afternoon sun and I wanted to be able to sit out there not in the sun after a full day w/a drink before dinner.

Speaking of which, the liquor was very good and very generous. I loved the in room distillery, Tequilla, Baccardi rum, Vodka and oddly, brandy in full bottles w/dispenser pours. The fridge had Dos Equis, water and sodas which were refilled daily again w/o having to tip xtra, though it is nice to do so.

The bars had every drink imagineable, were generous w/the liquor, had gorgeous settings, particularly "the veranda" off the lobby looking over the ocean. Beware that your 1st night you will drink too much....its just inevitable even if you dont want too. Even if your idea of a good time is not drinking too much you probably will as its so easy and fun. Unfortunately there are the fools that try too and really go overboard, I may have been one of those myself 20 years ago, I hope not but suspect I could have been. I saw no gross displays but heard about a couple and sure as hell heard them at night. The only drawback is that the hallways are all tile and open to the outdoors and they echo like a drum and people, especially drunks are LOUD and STUPID and if you are at the start of a hallway you get a lot of people going by. We were so tired at night we slept thru a lot of it but near the weekends the crowds seem to get younger and louder. I just used some of those soft earplugs and it killed most of the noise, that and tequilla.

The pools are are beautiful and not slimy at all. There are 2 identical sides to the hotel with the same pools, pool bars, fountains but one side is the "activity" pool and one is the quiet pool. We were on the activity pool side and I have to say it could get really annoying during the afternoon if you were in your room as the activity staff[ like a cruise ship] are yelling into a loudspeaker and blaring music to the volley ball players and others in the pool. It does stop by 4.30 or so but if I never hear that stupid "whoop, whoop" sing song chant again it will be too soon. The other side is indeed quiet so we went there when we did pool time. There were no rooms avail there as we might have considered moving however the disco is on that side and we werent sure if that made noise at night, it worked out fine but it is something to note.

We ate at all the specialty restaurants and had no problem w/the reservation system. All were very good, I was not as impressed w/Crystal as others seem to be but I am not a "foodie" We thought the buffet was very well done. They had an incredible fresh array of fruits, veggies, entress, desserts, drinks, you name it. We ate very, very well in what I thought was a lovely surrounding especially outside. The "san jose" is the specialty mexican dinner house but go there for the buffet lunch when they are open, killer Italian food among other choices and right over the beach. Very nice. I very much liked the Japanese resturant and loved their quiet, courtyard setting.

We did ATV's and survived. Used "Amigos" tours and got a good price for at least a couple of hours or more. Picked us up at hotel and took us out to the beach area beyond town. Rented jetskis at the hotel, bargained for 45.00$ each for 40 min . Thats the price down the beach and they matched it. We were out there close to an hour so it was great. Use the 5.00 water taxis on the beach to go across to the rocks, lovers beach/divorce beach. Also tip the guys who help you get in and out as they were very helpful and it got dicey when the high tide came in and we had higher seas those 1st couple of days. Its almost impossible w/o their help to not get completely wet and/or not get into the boat at all.
I swam in the ocean after those high surf days but it does have a steep beach and strong under tow. I did fine til the last day and timed it wrong and did get tumbled around pretty good. There is a life guard and hes good but unless you are strong and careful you could get in trouble fast. There is a swimming beach about a 1/2 mile further down the beach in front of another hotel.

Did some shopping in town and used the local bus for .80 that stops outside the gate. No problem at all. We like going "native" at least w/transportation so it was fun. Stops at Costco, sams/walmart etc if you want. Can call for taxi and spend more or walk but it is a ways and it gets hot. We did walk to Costco but after that we used the local bus. We did not eat at all downtown, didnt want to but a lot do....bring your pepto bismal. Shopping is typical tourist, shop around and compare or just buy the darn thing and be done w/it. Start bargaining for 1/2 what they quote and know what you are willing to spend and then be done w/it. I drive myself crazy trying to decide.
Did not get sick but were not reminded at check in that the tap water in the room is not potable....I should have remembered to ask, it is Mexico afterall but did not get sick after brushing teeth and making coffee in AM. I then read it in the hotel info and there is a small decal on the bottom of the mirror...oops.

I have written too much I know. However I read so many negative comments I wanted my more positive comments to be heard!

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Date | Rating
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English first
Edmonton, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2010

My husband & I stayed at Riu Palace for a week in April/2010. This was our first all-inclusive holiday, we are cruisers. We where greeted by smiling faces and a nice cold drink. Check in was a breeze. There is not one thing that we can say negative about the resort. We where treated like Royality. Our room was lovely, the king size bed was more comfortable then our bed at home. Every night when we got back to our room, the bed was turned down, an animal of some kind made out of towels sitting on our bed & chocolate on our pillow. Who can complain about that. The bathroom was very spacious, double sinks, nice big bathtub with shower. Plenty of towels, facecloths & bath supplies. Four bottles of liquor in a liquor cabinet, pop, beer & bottled water which was restocked every day. There was 4 A La Cartes, which we never had any problems getting reservations. The food was delicious and plenty of. The resort it self is very very clean. There's always someone cleaning something. The people working there are very friendly and always a smile on their face. No problems getting lounge chairs at pool side. The entertainment staff did an excellent job every evening with the shows. During the day there was always some kind of entertainment. The entertainment was better at this resort then any cruise ship we've been on. We cannot say to much about the sister resort, Santa Fe, next door. A couple of times when we walked the beach we stopped in there and had a drink by the pool. We are from Alberta, Canada. Riu Palace is equal to our 5* hotels. Would we go back to this resort? In a heart beat!!!!!

  • Stayed April 2010, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Detroit, Michigan
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2010

I enjoyed our trip. Just got back from 5 days at RIU Palace. I experienced some portion of all the other reviews, however, I expected it. The food is decent. However, for what we paid, we had no problem leaving to go downtown and experience life outside of the hotel. Breakfast was perfect, lunch was buffet, and dinner was ok. Again, they have to feed many different people from all over the world. So, I guess I didn't expect the best, but I was content. The rooms are perfect for what you want. We stayed on the "quiet side" of the hotel. If you are there to relax 24 hours, just ask for the quiet side. They will accomodate. The rooms were clean. 2 beds pushed together worked out great for us. Pool was warm enough to feel refreshing. The lobby bar was perfect for the two nights we did not go into town. If you are looking for a "world class" experience, pay for it somewhere else. If you are looking for a clean, decent, beautiful place, try it.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled with friends
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eunice
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2010

The Riu Palace is awesome! We were treated like royalty and made to feel very special. The resort is immaculate and the grounds are exceptionally maintained. It was our first trip to Cabo and hopefully will not be our last. The shrimp ravolia in the white wine served at the Krystal was outstanding!

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with friends
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
syracuseny
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2010

There were 3 of us in the party. We've all traveled somewhat and one is a read foodie. It's true that the reservation system is a pain, but as mentioned in some other reviews, people sometimes don't show. We've been on several cruises (Princess, Celebrity and Royal Carribean) and the food is way, way above that. Also, the foodie has eaten in very upscale restaurants in NYC, Alanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, etc and she was impressed. Krystal and the Japanese were excellent. The steak restaurant was fine. The entrees in the Mexican were wonderful, but you had to get your own appetizer and after breakfast and lunch at the buffet, we were ready for sit down. The wine could have been better.
The breakfast buffet was very complete and featured different items daily. During the week there was a different pool side buffet each day.

Service from the wait staff to bartenders to cleaning was upbeat, attentive and personable. The Jr. Suite was large and they accommodated the third person with a roll away that was comfortable.

The evening entertainment was a little hokey at times, but was very energetic and well-performed. The entertainment staff was on duty early AM from "stretch class" to late at the show and were very attentive during the day.

The grounds were spacious and well-maintained and the active pool and quiet pool were well separated. Best of all, there were only a few little children whose parents watched them and NO teen-agers. (We were looking for an adult vacation.)

This was my second visit to an all-inclusive and this was miles above the other.

The only hint - the drinks aren't strong. (One lady asked for a non-alcoholic and got the same drink as someone who asked for a regular margarita.) However, they will gladly add more alcohol and they are easy to get. (A perfect Manhattan did present a little challenge.)

Try it, You'll like it.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with friends
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2010

The resort is beaultiful as a fact, but food TERRIBLE! Wow, how surprised I am with the other reviews. It you want to eat teenager carp food that is for sure a great place for you. If you want QUALITY you will be in trouble there. From the 5 restaurants only ONE is DECENT for BUFFET FOOD and breakfast..... The teenagers are all over the reviews here. Plus, if you go on vacation for NO SLEEP perfect. Since RIU PALACE IS ALL INCLUSIVE we got to experience every night (for 9 nights) people thouwing bottles of wisky and water on the ground and outside of our doors, screeming. We got no rest AT ALL. VERY DISAPOINTING!

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Overland Park, Kansas
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2010

I'm going to get it out of the way. There are two running complaints that you'll see repeated in every other review. 1) Restaurant reservations: Yes, the system sucks. You have to get up early and make reservations for the next day. Trust me, the restaurants aren't worth it anyway. The two times I've been to this resort, I've made reservations 3 times, actually kept one of them at the Japanese place - it was ok. The main hall buffet is excellent. Why add stress to your vacation trying to make a reservation time? Relax and stop complaining about it. 2) Beds: Yes, they like to push two smaller beds together to make a larger bed. Oh no! I either didn't notice this or we were lucky enough to have one of the seemingly few king size beds in the entire resort. I've stayed in the Oceanfront Jacuzzi Suite (room 3145) both times and it is an EXCELLENT room with an incredible ocean view, a rooftop terrace from which you can see the entire resort, and a full view of the activity pool from the room window. Pretty sweet - the bed was the last think I would think to complain about. To give you an idea of my opinion on the place, the ONE complaint I could think of is that I had to walk my lazy [--] to the lobby to get a good enough wi-fi signal to waste time on the internet. Hard to call that a legitimate complaint.

Now that's out of the way, I'll let you know why I've been twice. For my 30th birthday, my fiance surprised me with a trip to a resort neither of us had ever heard of. It was just the two of us and we could not have been happier with the RIU Palace. It was a wonderful time to relax, drink, eat, sleep, drink some more, eat some more, sleep some more...you get the idea. Hard to beat.

It was no nice - we decided to get married there almost exactly one year later. Nearly 50 friends and family came with us to celebrate our wedding and all of them stayed at the resort. I can guarantee you, every one of them would write a glowing review - which I think is impressive seeing how it's hard to make 5 people happy in a group, let alone 50. If you're thinking about a wedding at the RIU Palace - I recommend it. The regular wedding planner was on vacation so we had the fill-in, Victor. Victor's my man! I like him more than the regluar gal, so it worked out great. Another stand-out on the staff is Cesar. This dude was the first person in the main buffet hall ever morning and the last to leave. He took care of every single person in our party at one point or another and half our guests went out of their way to tell us a story about what Cesar had done for them. I can't explain how great everything was. Too many fantastic memories to list.

EVERY positive thing you have read in other reviews is absolutely true - I won't bore you with repeating them. Nearly every negative thing you've read is either too small to worry about when you're on vacation (see 1st paragraph), or what I can only assume is an anomaly - like getting moved into a room that's in the middle of repairs. Bottom line, for the price we've paid twice - you get so much more than you're money's worth. If you want a more modern and plush setting - spend a lot more money and go somewhere else. If you want a fantastic all-inclusive resort that only Grumpy McNeversatisfied would complain about, The RIU Palace is the place for you. I'd recommend this resort to anyone who would listen - and have!

  • Stayed October 2009, 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas

Address: Av. Camino Viejo a San Jose | Del Cabo KM 4.5 El Medano Ejidal, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > Cabo San Lucas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 Top resorts Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#18 Luxury Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#21 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#21 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#22 Romantic Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas 4*
Number of rooms: 642
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the southern Baja California peninsula, 4.5 km/2.8 miles from Cabo San Lucas. 5-storey building. On the beachfront. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. 32,000 m2 garden. 3.5 km/2.2 miles from downtown Cabo San Lucas. 40 km/25 miles from the airport. 500 m/1650 ft from a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa, Diners. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas Hotel Cabo San Lucas
Riu Palace Los Cabos
Riu Cabo San Lucas
Riu Los Cabos
Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas Los Cabos

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