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“Not Worth the Money, Waiting and Aggravation” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Heaven at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya

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Heaven at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Carretera Cancun-Chetumal Km 72, Puerto Aventuras 77710, Mexico (Formerly Aventura Spa Palace)   |  
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Ranked #13 of 15 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
A TripAdvisor Member
“Not Worth the Money, Waiting and Aggravation”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2004

Well, after reading the other reviews, traveling and staying at the Aventura Spa Palace, we thought we would also write a review. We have never written a review before, however, if you gain some insight, it'll be worth it. We did not enjoy most of our stay there. Upon our arrival at 3 pm, we were told that they overbooked and that our room would be ready in approximately 45 minutes. They said there was no other place for us to clean up, change or shower; we just had to wait. We kept checking back with the front desk every hour (as they suggested) and waited until 8:30 pm to get into our room. The room wasn't clean, had no water pressure and the safe was broken (pretty hard to enjoy the pools, etc. when you need to carry around your passport, jewelry and money with no safe in the room). The hotel said there wasn't anything they could do for us - well for $350.00 a night - they should have done something for us. Getting a telephone line out was next to impossible - so be aware if you need to call home! We had pre-paid calling cards, cell phones, and text pager - nothing worked. Even the phone in our room ($5.00 a try) wouldn't go through to the US. The food is average, the service was ok. It's a bit odd to read other reviews stating that people enjoyed the fake flower petals and arranged towels at night. If that's what makes a vacation for you, then this is your place. If you have discriminating taste and you've traveled abroad, knowing what's out there, then save your sanity and go to Europe. The waiting in line is ridiculous! Waiting for food, drinks, beachtowels, room-service that never shows up, ...waiting for a ROOM! All-inclusive, yes, it's true - but the waiting for every single thing gets so annoying. We've traveled quite a bit and have done all-inclusive vacations previously. This is low end quality comparitively speaking; yet a high-end cost! Note to the wise*listen to the "time-share" gimmick and get the $100 Spa Money to spend at their Spa. The Spa treatments were excellent and helped us to enjoy the rest of our vacation. Another important note - If you ever have any disputes with the hotel, don't give your luggage to the bellboy when departing. They held our luggage and wouldn't return it to us until we paid for the trip in full. Our intent was to withhold money since our first night was ruined and we didn't get our room until 8:45 pm (when check-in was at 3pm). They would not give us our luggage until we paid in full; we did so that we literally wouldn't miss our flight. Long story short - it's just simply not worth it! Talking to Expedia and Best Day Tours and Aventura itself - they all wipe their hands and say there's nothing that they can do. So if you decide to go - don't have high expectations!

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3,769 reviews from our community

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  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 29, 2004

My husband and I spent 5 nights at ASP: February 17-22. We loved every minute of it! Everything went so smoothly...from the check in, to room service, to eating, to drinking, to using the in room jacuzzi, to getting taxis, to getting bicycles, to buying souvenirs, to using spa facilities, to playing with the non motorized water equipment, and so on and so on. I read reviews on this site for three months; I was a little concerned that my experience there would be like seeing an Oscar Award winning movie after being told all of the best parts, but it wasn't the case! My husband was pretty patient with me, but I think he got a little tired of hearing me preface a comment by saying, "Well, I read on the internet that......"

We are a couple in our mid thirties celebrating our 10th anniversary.
On our first trip to Cancun, we stayed in the hotel zone and enjoyed it very much. This trip, however, we wanted a resort that offered the things we loved about our first trip: Snorkeling, water, and sun. We were sure the Xpu-Ha was the place for us after much research, and then at the last minute opted for Aventura because of the adults only feature. It worked out great because we were still able to enjoy a day at Xpu-Ha and see a fabulous beach, exotic animals, and beautiful fish.

Our favorite parts of Aventura Spa Palace: 1. In room jacuzzi and robes 2. Omlettes and memosas overlooking the ocean at breakfast 3. Sunning near the lagoon and being able to walk right out to snorkel, then flop back on the beach for more sun, drinks, and nachos. (At home, we spend much of our leisure time in the summer boating on a river with water that resembles chocolate milk. For us, the lagoon was marvelous!) The snorkeling was definitely better at Xpu-Ha, but were loved the convenience of snorkeling in the lagoon the days we weren't at Xpu-Ha.

4. Superb and friendly service everywhere, especially at all restaurants- my favorite: Kabobs at Mundaca with a "Chocolate Cup" for dessert

Things I found helpful: 1. Don't worry about exchanging money if you are buying souvenirs at the resort. They really are reasonable! I bought several ankle bracelets for under $1.00 each!

2. If the resort is busy, get up early to reserve a chair if you really want a certain spot. We settled for the plastic molded ones on the lagoon a lot of the time because we were too lazy to go out and reserve a spot. The pool area fills up faster.

3. Use the hydrotherapy services at least once. I didn't book a spa treatment, but used the hydrotherapy room(upstairs in the North Lobby), which doesn't cost extra. Heavenly!

4. Buy the $5.00 prepaid phone card at the gift shop to call home. When using it, dial "001" and then the number you want to call. It is only 4 minutes, but the easiest and probably cheapest way to call home. We didn't use the phone in our room or charge anything else to our room, and were able to use the "express check out" when we left. Much quicker!

5. Bring a wad of $1 bills. The service was excellent, and after hearing what little the employees make, we wanted to tip them for all of their hard work.

I wish I could tell you about the free tours offered with the package, which also lured us to the place, but we loved the resort so much, the only time we ventured away from it was to go to Xpu-Ha and ride bikes to Puerto Aventuras.

All in all, ASP turned us into self indulgent, lazy slugs. We have found this does not mesh with our lifestyle at home, and we are having trouble adjusting!! We would not trade any of it if we could do it all over again!

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A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 29, 2004

We stayed at the Adventura Spa Palace in September 2003 for 2 weeks.
The resort was split in to 2 hotels ( both Adult's only ). We stayed in the Spa Palace which is where the North Lobby was situated and the Adventura Palace is the South Lobby. The rooms were amazing and had everything you could possibly need ( the jacuzzi bath was fantastic) The mini bar was stocked up every other day and there were optics on the wall with Rum, Tequilla and Brandy. The Hotel resort was massive but there was always someone driving past on a Golf Buggy. There was also a Coach that took us from Lobby to Lobby so we never had to walk very far. The Grounds were beautiful and there was a large outdoor pool in both Hotels. There were indoor pools, a diving pool,a cross current pool and several jacuzzi's too. The Hotel Beaches were beautiful but some people were complaining that they were to small and that the lagoons were rubbish but we thought they were fantastic. We spent hours snorkelling in the Lagoons and they were full of tropical fish. There were several Restaurants spread over both Hotels ( Mexican, Italian, Oriental, Healthy Eating, Mediterranean and International. The food and service was excellent. Our favourite was the Healthy Eating Restaurant.
It served Vegetarian dishes, a selection of meat dishes and Healthy choices as well. The Italian was quite disappointing. There was a Grill where you could get Steaks cooked for you to your liking ( they were lovely ) but I wouldn't recommend it if you don't like to queue for long. There was also a buffet serving Italian dishes but there wasn't much to choose from. All the Staff throughout the Hotels were very polite and helpfull. We have been to the Mayan Riviera three times and this was by far the best hotel we have stayed in. There was so much to choose from and you could also visit other palace resorts and use their facilities. There was a bus that took you to the Moon Palace and the Beach Palace in Cancun daily. I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND this Hotel.
There's something for everyone. There's 3 Gym's, a Climbing tower, assault Course and nature trails for people who want an active Holiday and then theres Spa treatments, Sauna's, Steam rooms etc for People who just to relax. IT IS WELL WORTH A VISIT!!

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Birmingham, MI
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2004

stayed at the Spa Palace for 7 nights. This resort is just like every other all-inclusive - it is not high end as travel agents and their website would lead you to believe. We got there - they had overbooked the hotel - offered us $500 to move around to all of their different properties! Ha! We said no, of course, and it took them another 2-3 hours to find us rooms (we were there with another couple and they ended up putting us on opposite ends of the resort!). The food was average at best, room service NEVER answered the phone. So, they list room service as an amenity, but it's pretty much non-existent. Think there won't be any spring breakers here? Think again - they were running around the hallways at night! And the pool - if you like loud, obnoxious rap music played all day accompanied by an annoying activities director on a loud speaker, then this is the place for you!
Seriously, if you are a discriminating traveler and like tasteful, upscale accomodations, good service and good food, do not stay here.
Spend the money to fly to France and vacation on the Riviera - you can do it for the same amount of money.

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A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2004

I went with a bunch of girlfriends 2/20-2/24 and we had a great time, but were disappointed in a few things. First, the grounds and views are spectacular. The pools are gorgeous and the lagoons were very nice. We had to be out by 6:30 a.m. to get lounge chairs because the hotel was overbooked. I think this affected the service and the quality of the food because the service was slow and the food marginal. I was really looking forward to some great seafood and didn't get it. In talking to people around the pool, everyone we met felt the same way. The breakfast buffets were very good and the guacamole was awesome! The staff was friendly, but slow. As for the cats, let me tell you, they sounded like they were posessed! I have never heard cats 'scream' like this before. Saturday night they literally kept us up half the night.
There is alot of food in the hallways that people put out of their room and the cats I'm sure eat the rotten moldy food and go crazy! I think if I was there for a romantic getaway I'd be disappointed, but going with a bunch of friends, we had a blast.

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3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2004

The ASP is definitely a palace. We just got back from a long weekend, and can't wait to go back. As for the negative reviews, all we can say is "what planet are these people from? " We guess that there are some people that you just are never going to please. If you want to find a place to eat,drink, relax, and forget about life for awhile, this is it! This resort is HUGE and beautiful, and judging from the oohs and ahhs in our van as we drove up, others felt that way too. The grounds are immaculately maintained and well groomed. Our room was ready upon our arrival, about 1:30PM. we checked in then were taken by golf cart to our room. From reading other reviews we asked for a room in buildings 4 or 5, but were told they were full, and our room couldn't be changed. so we took the room in buliding 9 , which is on the far north (spa) side. which turned out to be just fine. At most it is a very pleasant 10 minute walk to the far south side of the complex. The room was very nice. It had a king size bed, 2 person jaccuzzi, a real plus, large shower, not to forget the fully stocked refrigerator, and liquor dispenser. Some reviewers have said it is small, but we didn't find this to be an issue. We didn't travel 2000+ miles to sit in a hotel room anyways. All the staff that we encountered were extremely polite and very helpful. The room was made every day in a timely maner and the bed turned down every night. One day we were trying to find the meditation room, where the morning yoga was held and asked a gardener to point us in the right direction, instead of telling us, he sent down his rake and walked us to it., an example of just how helpful everyone was. FOOD: no complaints here. with 6 restaurants to choose from never a problem. the first morning we had the breakfast buffet at Mo Mo No Hana in the north lobby,we enjoyed it so much. we never ate breakfast anywhere else. The food at the other restaurants was very good as well.
The longest wait we had for dinner was about an hour, so we put our room number in and proceeded to go to the bar and down a few margaritas till dinner time. The lunch buffets at El Greco and Mundaca were very good as well. We've read that some people complained about the meat. We found the steaks to be excellent, and the ocean views are awesome.
DRINKS: strong and of good quality, again what are people complaining about? BEACH/POOL: True there is no "natural beach" as some people might want, but the lagoon is gorgeous, with plenty of sand and lounge chairs. there is waiter service on the beach for drinks, but if you are in a hurry, it's a short walk to one of the pool bars. If quiet is what you are after, go to the far north end of the lagoon, there are fewer people and very serene there. tip: if you sleep in too late you will have a hard time finding a spot by the beach or pool. So at 7-7:30am take your towels and stake your claim for a chair. every morning while my wife was at yoga, which she highly recommends , I picked out our spot, then met her for breakfast. We spent all our "sun time" at the lagoon, but if a pool is your thing, they are lovely as well. SPA: do make use of the facilities The sauna and spa area is wonderful, and get a massage (extra charge) they are great. The adults-only concept is great, don't get us wrong we love kids, but it's nice to get away for awile. we found the ages of the guests to be a good mix, ranging from 20's to 60's with no concentration of any one age. A note about the cats some people have mentioned: we noticed a couple of cats walking around, but it's not like there are huge bands of them. We found them to be a non-issue.NIGHTLIFE: north(spa) lobby is more serene. A piano player gives some nice background music if you just want to have a drink and chill. The south(aventura) side is more active. a disco is on the second floor. In the lobby a band plays allowing dancing if you so choose. We know we're forgeting something but again, if you want to eat,drink,relax,unwind,sun, this is the place. It is fabulous, we can't wait to go back.

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Lincoln, NE
Top Contributor
374 reviews 374 reviews
83 hotel reviews
Reviews in 82 cities Reviews in 82 cities
140 helpful votes 140 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2004

We just returned from ASP, staying 5 nights February 19th to February 24th. We traveled with another couple and had a great time. The property is spectacular and incredibly clean. The weather was perfect, mid-80's and sunny each day. The food as many of the reviews posted here had warned was very average...at best. We ate dinner at each of the restaurants one time. My favorite was Mo Mo Ho Hana. They brought sushi and spring rolls to our table as an appetizer. Very good. After this the main course was pretty bland...a common theme with all restaurants. My least favorite was La Huerta. I tried a "fish" entree that may or may not have actually been fish. By the end of the trip we had learned where to find decent food though. The burgers during lunch at Mundaca were good, the creme of asparagus soup and club sandwich on the room service menu were good, and the chocolate cake served at La Hacienda was very good. If you are looking for a place to dine like a king don't come here. If you are not a picky eater then don't let the negative reviews of ASP's dining turn you away. The pool is awsome and definately not too cold as many reviews here suggest. When you first get in it does feel a bit chilly but the longer you spend in the sun, the more you appreciate the pool's temperature. If you want a chair at the pool you need to get up early and reserve one by placing your towel, book, etc... on the chair. The place was packed so if you wanted a specific spot you had to wake up around 5:30am. Take the bikes into Puerto Aventuras. There are a couple great places to eat and it is fun to watch the dolphins. For $50-$150 you can swim with them as well. We didn't but the folks that were appeared to really be enjoying themselves. The snorkelling was a lot of fun at Xpu-Ha. The beach was nice as well. This is well worth the $6 cab ride. My wife spent a couple hours at the spa and had great things to say about the services she received. The evening "shows" were pretty lame and the disco was average. Bottom line, if you are looking for a great place to hang by the pool, catch some rays, and drink a beer or 50, this is a great place to go. If you are more the gourmet dining or late night partying type you might want to look elsewhere.

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Additional Information about Heaven at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya

Address: Carretera Cancun-Chetumal Km 72, Puerto Aventuras 77710, Mexico (Formerly Aventura Spa Palace)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#11 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#11 Spa Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Heaven at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya 4.5*
Number of rooms: 577
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A blend of relaxation and adventure awaits you at this adults only retreat. Set in the Riviera Maya overlooking the aquamarine Caribbean Sea, enjoy 1,266 luxurious accommodations with double Jacuzzi, balcony (most with hammock), and 24 hr. room service. Among the facilities to highlight is the state-of-the-art spa offering a perfect day of pampering. Guests can also enjoy seven restaurants, several bars, a disco, outdoor/indoor pools, and unlimited tours as part of the all-inclusive package. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aventura Hotel Palace
Aventura Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Mayan Riviera Palace
Adventure Spa Palace
Hotel Mayan Palace
Adventura Spa Palace
Aventura Palace Spa
Aventura Spa Palace Riviera Maya
Aventura Spa Palace Resort
Aventura Spa Palace Mexico

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