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“Good place to stay” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Santa Fe

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Hotel Riu Santa Fe
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Camino Viejo a San Jose, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #33 of 66 hotels in Cabo San Lucas
Levis, Canada
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Good place to stay”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

My wife and I were at the Riu Santa Fé Nov. 05-12, 2012 for the first time. The resort is huge and very well located between San-José (airport at 45 min.) and Cabo San-Lucas (about 15 min.); with Costco and Walmart not far away; the frequent local bus (1$) is easy to use.
Excellent 5 stars: resort landscaping, outdoor and indoor cleanliness, excellent food at buffets and restaurants (but personnel too quick at the restaurants), excellent service, everything is well organized with efficiency.
Good 4 stars: room, bathroom
Poor 2 stars
: entertainement at night (continuation of the day animation); only one real show
Suggestion: Keep an eye on your personnal effects (a dress disappeared in our room) and a book + magazine on our chairs nearby the pool; also check your towels (a few people when they returned at their chairs had to pay for their towels missing)

Room Tip: Select a room in block 7 close to the beach and where the animation is.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
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4,135 people have reviewed this hotel

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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
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,086)
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English first
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

The Riu Santa Fe is awesome!! I've never had an all-inclusive deal before and was sceptical - it sounded too good to be true but... It wasn't! It was excellent value for money.
The rooms are very clean and well kept, as are the grounds of the hotel. It was handy having the bar stocked regularly if you wanted to have a few quiet drinks in the room before heading to dinner or the club (all of these drinks were still part of the all-inclusive price).
We stayed in an ocean view room which had a lovely view of the ocean but also the infinity pool.
It was probably the most fun resort I've stayed at. The games at the pool were hilarious and entertaining - the staff were great & so fun and friendly! They made sure everyone was enjoying themselves! It was good to have variety with so many restaurants. And having so many bars was good as it was always busy. The nightclub was fun as well - everyone seemed to want to go out and have a good time while we were there.
We met some really nice people there, both the staff and those on vacation. I hope to go back to Mexico again one day, loved it!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

We went to the Santa Fe in Cabo as part of a wedding party from Nov. 8 to the 15th of Nov. 2012. There was a total of 37, including family, friends and children.
The problems started at the front desk on arrival. Most of us checked in O.K. although we were informed that we would have all of our keys handed to us on the bus ride from the airport. That did not happen, No big deal. However, the bride and groom to be, were left out in the lobby as the RIu did not have them in the system. No matter how hard they pleaded the hotel said that they were not registered and that the issue was with the tour operator. (Sun Wing to be precise). After a long battle with the front desk, the wedding planner came to the rescue and vouched that they were there for a wedding and they gave them a room.
On the positive side, the setting of the hotel is great. Very nice beach with a close up view of the major site of the point of the peninsula. Pools were nice and the food was better than average, HOWEVER, if you like wine with your dinner FORGET IT! The wine that they serve is the worst tasting wine I have tasted at a resort. The wine comes from plastic hoses that they use to fill decanters with and in some cases they even used wine bottles to fill with their cheap wine. The next day we went to Walmart which is close by and bought our own wine to take into the restaurants. We saw other guests do the same.
The wedding part of the holiday went off without a hitch. Guadalupe, the wedding coordinator did a great job of getting it all together. It's too bad the rest of the staff did not have her motivation to do a good job. The staff in general were not to friendly or happy to be there.
The end of our stay was met with a huge issue. One by one, members of our group took sick. Six in total. We had to call the house physician. $80.00 to go to her office or $100 for a room visit. If you can't get out of bed which was the case it was $100. then another $100 for the shots and medication. The physician told me that she saw at least two people per day with Montezumas Revenge. Not a good lasting impression for the last two days there.
There is not one of a group of 37 that would go back there.
We discovered that the chamber maids did not replace used glasses with clean sterilized ones but instead washed them in the bathroom sinks and put them back out. Makes a lot of sense when they tell you not to brush your teeth with the sink water or to drink it but yet they wash the glasses that you drink from with the contaminated water.

Room Tip: Building Number Seven is closest to the ocean but a really long walk from the lobby and most of the...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

my 3rd riu resort to visit, and i love it...great everything and nice beach.

the only bad thing is the location since all resorts are away from the clubs, but they have taxis going from resort to the clubs, about 10 min ride.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Fredericton, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

We had a group of about 30 go down for a wedding, ranging in age from 6 to 70. Dates of arrival: Nov 8/9, leaving Nov 15/16. The bulk of the group got there Thursday (including the Bride and Groom) - and oops, we don't have a room for you, Bride and Groom. The front desk staff were not helpful at all. The rest of us got there Friday.

The good: I will say, the waitstaff and the entertainment staff were great. There were always maids and groundspeople cleaning everywhere as well.

The bad: The front desk staff seem to be kind of power-hungry (and inept). On my last night there, I'm in my room packing (with the Do Not Disturb sign on my door). There's a knock, and then a couple walks in with their luggage. There was a mix-up with my reservation, the hotel seemed to think I had checked out that day. So the front desk calls me - do I get a "sorry, there seems to be some confusion, could you come down..."? Nope. Instead, the guy on the phone was accusatory "You were supposed to check out today, if you don't come down and check out, we will charge you for another night". When I went down to reception and showed them my confirmation sheets of when I was checking out, all I got was "I have to photocopy these". No sorry, no nothing. I was not impressed. Thankfully I was fully dressed when the couple walked in - can you imagine????

Six of our group of 30+ got sick, two greatly so (we called the doctor for one of them, and she is still trying to recover, almost a week later). The others are still experiencing bathroom issues as well.

Overall: would I come back to this resort? No. Would I recommend it to my friends? No. If only one or two issues had come up during the week, I could excuse that. But there were too many issues with our group (and we're not drinkers - but maybe that was the problem, we were sober so we noticed all the problems?).

Room Tip: Bulding # 7 has the oceanview rooms, and is right where the party pool is. It is close to the lunch...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sacramento, California
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

Back in 2009 I wrote a review after staying at this hotel and said that it was the best all-inclusive based on my 10 years of traveling in Mexico! Well, we went back in November of this year and it is still on the top of my list. This time we statyed in a Jacuzzi Suite #7326 and it is was the best room at the hotel, guaranteed! The service at the restaurants and bars were excellent. They had a good selection of food but most of their dishes are mexican food, but we are in Mexico. :) When you go, see Armando at the pool side bar and Martin will take care of you at the buffet. The drinks are made very quickly and they pour the min amt of alcohol but all you have to do is ask for an extra shot and you GET IT! Don't forget, they stock your room with hard liquor, beer, soda and water, so you can make your own drinks and when you are low, just give em' a call and they will restock. When you go into town, take the water taxi for $12. which includes a 20 ride to Los Arcos and ask them to drop you off at the Marina, which is right in the heart of downtown. For the NFL Games, go to Cabo Catina! When we travel next, it will be at a RIU and when we go back to Cabo, you will find us at the Santa Fe.

Room Tip: If you choose a garden view room, ask for Building 7, it's the closest to the ocean. If you wan...
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

My boyfriend and I went down to Cabo Nov. 5-11 for the first time after a lot of hesitation. Neither of us had much interest in visiting Mexico due to the overall safety concerns the country poses. but we are thrilled at this experience at the Riu Santa Fe. We booked through Alaska Airlines Vacations and got a wicked deal. As our first choice for this holiday was going to be Hawaii (would have been over $2500 just for flight and hotel only) the value this resort offers was fantastic. We booked airport transfers with the package so that alleviated the stress of trying to get to the hotel. With all the pushy timeshare sellers as soon as you walk out,it's a bit much. The drive from the airport is approx. 30 min. you go past all the malls, run down down buildings, timeshares, costcos and walmarts. It's a weird mix of Mexico and America in Cabo, I guess kind of like Cancun. When we arrived at the hotel, the porters take your bags into the lobby while you go check in. Check in went smooth and quickly although they didn't have a room assigned to us when we got there,they found us one right away. We were placed in building 6. which we both felt after walking around for the week was a great location. Close to the lobby bars and entertainment, and buffet. short 2min walk to the pools by the beach.

our room was on the 2nd floor so had to lug the suitcase up, no elevator, but no big deal for us. the porter in the lobby did ask if we wanted our bags brought to our rooms and we did decline so that we could have them right away.

The Room:
clean, modern, king size bed (not too hard, but not plush by any means)
Pillows are a bit flat and lumpy though (I'd go to walmart next time and buy one, lol)
washroom was in good condition, clean deep tub/shower combo (though very narrow, if you were a larger person you def. could not have a bath)
bar fridge and liq. dispenser - fantastic. restocked daily with litre bottles of water, soda and beer - brush your teeth with the bottled water, the tap water is not drinkable.
My only complaint about the room would be temperature control. It's either really cold if you have the AC on or really warm if you turn it off. There is a ceiling fan above the bed, but again its on fast or off, no other settings, so you get really cold quickly when laying in bed.
TV has about 3-4 english tv shows with spanish subtitles so if you dont feel like being out partying one or two nights you can chill in your room and veg out.

The Resort:

beautiful, clean, well layed out - there is always someone cleaning or gardening.
Location is amazing, view of the arches
Water is beautiful, (I thought it would be dirty brown like the Mazatlan) - though you cant swim in front of the resort. water is crazy rough
The pools- by the lobby is a huge pool with swim up bar. It seemed like the more mellow pool to be at if you wanted to get away or if you had the kids with you.
The pools near the beach were great, always had something going on, there are 3 infinity pools with swim up bars at 2 of them.
The only thing that was really annoying is the sound echoing down the hall when people come in late from the bar, as everything is stone it's sooooo loud, also people slamming their doors- can wake u up.
Dont mind the GIANT moths and small bats everywhere, they're harmless.
The Drinks:
the drinks at the lobby bar were always great in the evening.
the drinks at the pool bars were good, but like anywhere different bartenders make the same drink differently
They had a lot of brand name liq. which was great, but they also ran out of it quick.
The wine in the restaurants is disgusting, I wouldn't recommend (buy a bottle in town and bring it with you)
The beer in the restaurants tastes off as well.
The beer at the pool bars isn't too bad, but it's all draft at the resort, except for what you get in your room.
The mix/juice.- beware if you don't like artificial sweeteners, everything tastes like it - which to us is gross. they don't tell you it isn't regular stuff either so if you had an allergy to it you could be in trouble.

The Food:
The buffet was great. always a huge choice in food options. Most of what I ate was delicious, only a few items were not to my liking, but nothing to fuss over.
The dessert bar is huge, though some items that looked beautiful and delicious turned out to be kinda gross and bland.

The a la carte restaurants:
This whole procedure kind of annoyed me, and not because of anything bad at this resort, it's just the concept of having to go early to put your name down for a reservation. when we first got here it was hard to get an early seating for any of them. who wants dinner at 9pm? I dont know if i'll be around at that time. Being on holidays means not having expectations to be somewhere or plan in my books.

The service at the restaurants was fantastic,
Asian restaurant:
tons of sushi
tons of fried food
a mix of all asian cuisines
The miso soup was good
If you dont eat ocean products like me, you can leave this experience feeling gross from the all the fried options.

delicious steak
great service, near the ocean
the fried food appetizer wasnt my thing, but my boyfriend ate it.
the soup was a tomato on one half the bowl and potato on the otherhalf- very good.
Cesar salad was good

We missed our reservation for this one unfortunately as i had a very long hangover that day. but I was told you got the same sort of pasta like the one you could get any day in the buffet.

the all day snacks option is kinda gross in the sportsbar (nachos and cheese-like 711 nachos, hamburgers and hotdogs that are in a fridge and you microwave, and pastries that look like they've been there all week and had a fly buzzing around in the display case, eww)

The People:

AMAZING! so warm, friendly and helpful.
everyone was always smiling, and genuinely seemed to be happy to be there and always said hello when you walked past.
Bartender work their butts off
The housekeepers do lots of towel art on your bed - so cool.
The entertainers work so hard to engage and entertain the guests. always something to participate in or watch.

The Entertainment:
WOW!!! so good. first day we got there and there was a Michael Jackson thriller tribute. unreal! I dont really even like michael Jackson and it was beyond fantastic.
Next day was Grease, then Broadway, then a bunch of other shows,
Disco seemed dead every night, the place to be on the resort at night was the lobby bars.
went to the disco one night after we got back from being in town.

only can use it in the lobby and you have to use your free 90 minutes all at once, you cant be on for 10 min and come back later and try to get on again, it will lock you out till the following day.

Onsite Bank Machines:
sneaky, have certain commands written in spanish and english, but when it comes to asking you to accept service charges it only writes it in spanish. wtf. so you dont really know what you're agreeing to. We figured it out with some help.


Bring lots of sunblock with you, we had 2 bottles and ran out. they are $20 US for a bottle onsite
Bring LOTS of small bills, $1,$5 USD
Tip the housekeeper daily- you'll get great service and it could safe you a theft
Tip the bartender upfront and you will get great service
tip the wait staff in the restaurants, they work hard.
Lock you suitcase when you're not in your room. - we didn't have any issues in our room, but we also didn't create opportunities for theft either. a couple we met had their laptop stolen, but they did leave it out on their nightstand.
If you take the water taxi over to lovers beach, it's really crazy trying to get in and out of the boat, be prepared for bruising.- on the other side people will assist you and then ask you for money and make you feel like a douche if you dont give them a tip
Going into town for a night out is approx. 140 pesos each way

We had a great time here, met some amazing people, relaxed, partied, chilled. Great overall value. Fun resort. a mix of older, younger, weddings, friends, couples, families - suitable for all without offending any one demographic.

On our trip the majority of people at the resort were Canadian - British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec, much to the dismay of some of the Americans we overheard complaining about it, lol. There were a minority of Americans, Germans, English and Brazilians. We met some fantastic couples from Chicago, Michigan and Montreal. Going as a couple was fun, and quality time together, but we both said it would be a great place to come back with our friends in tow.

I would def. recommend this resort we didn't really leave it for the week, and don't really feel like we missed out. We had a great time. Will be back again.

Room Tip: Building 6 was great. Very central to everything. we faced the Riu Palace it was very quiet.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Santa Fe

Also Known As:
Riu Santa Fe
Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas
Riu Santa Fe Los Cabos
Riu Sante Fe
Riu Santa Fe Cabo
Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos
Address: Camino Viejo a San Jose, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > Cabo San Lucas
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#19 Top resorts Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#21 Romantic Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#24 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#33 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Santa Fe 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located in the southern Baja California peninsula, 4.5 km/2.8 miles from Cabo San Lucas * Opened winter 2007/8 * 1-story main building and 3-story and 4-story annexes * On the beachfront * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 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 ... more   less 
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