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“Three different experiences” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa

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Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Carretera Chetumal-Puerto Juarez Km, 256-100 | Municipio Solidaridad, Akumal 77710, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 20 hotels in Akumal
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Three different experiences”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

We stayed at this resort for the first time recently. We did our research and thought it a good choice for our vacation and it was.

So what are the three experiences that I am describing? There is an external and an internal experience as well an eating experience. and they were all of different quality.

Firstly, the external experience; by that I mean everything outside of our rooms. I would award that 5 stars. The White Sands is a part of a complex of resorts that really act as one. The outside environment was really attractive and well looked after. The pools were extensive and interesting to look and large and not crowded. The beach was wonderful; long white sandy beaches stretching as far as the eye could see, the sea turquoise and palms growing in the sand providing shade and beauty....beautiful and exactly what I was looking for. Actually, it was better than I was expecting! The sports facilities were superb and the lobby areas are open and very comfortable and attractive and offer free wifi, yes, its expensive everywhere else. We spent most of our time on the beach, reading, gazing, snorkeling and swimming and walking. My favorite activity was going there early in the morning about 8am, getting a freshly made coffee at the Punta Emila beach bar and sitting on the beach lounger gazing at the sea, with few other people there at that time.

Second experience: The restaurants were varied in quality. The buffets were OK, quite good food but a little like a corporate staff restaurant. One can also eat in other restaurants in the evening on a first come first served basis but long trousers are needed and sleeved tops for men. The worst by far for food was the Asian restaurant; I imagine that they had not bought an Asian cookbook as the food was not really Asian at all. Satay was white tasteless chicken with a sticky sauce to dip it into. The beef red curry was really a stew with a slightly spicy gravy and the beef tough, gristly and not properly cooked; disgusting! the place was nice though. The best restaurant we visited was el Dorado which was really good: good food, environment and service. Followed by the Italian restaurant, also good with a nice outside part to the restaurant. Generally, we all liked the food, the drinks and the service.

The third experience and the worst was the "internal world", that is the rooms and service there. The rooms are brown and drab, not a bad size but with a very uncomfortable cheap bed and an incontinence sheet over the mattress, a bit like sleeping in your cot or crib when you were younger or an opportunity to consider your very old age! Every move in the bed caused a crinkling and crackling sound all night long, so we did not sleep well there. I had to chase the maid in the morning for sugar for my in room coffee, at other times for towels that were nor replaced and missing bath robes. You are told in the literature in the room that you will be charged if any of these things are missing. The balconies were nice though.

So in conclusion: if you like the outside world and experience on your vacation and don't care too much about your room, you will love this place, the food is good and plentiful as are the drinks. If you think you will spend time in your room, I would look else where such as the Mayan resorts who have great outdoor environments and beautify comfortable rooms to lounge around in.

I must say that we really did enjoy our vacation here as the outside world was so good, as were all the people looking after us. I think we would go back.

Therefore, this place gets 3.5 stars from us but I will have to award it 4.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 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 (278)
Date | Rating
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English first
Deer Lake, NL, Canada
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

This was our second trip to the Grand Palladium. Our first stay was at the Colonial and this time they upgraded our friends and us to the White Sands. We have travelled to several resorts in Cuba, Punta Cana, Jamaica and this resort is at the top of our list. The food is great as well as the selection of drinks. The A La Carts that we went to were very good and fast service, but go early as it gets quite busy later in the evening. We are quiet people so the lack of night life for the partiers was not a problem for us although there is no problem to have a good time at one of the bars. We took in a few of the shows which provides some good entertainment for a couple of hours. The staff treated us very well and the workers were very polite and kind to us. The pools were clean and not too crowed although it was difficult to find chairs at times on the beach and pools. You have to go down early in the morning and put your towels on the chairs. The beach is average as we prefer the beaches in Cuba and Punta Cana more so. But no complaints from us. Overall this is a great resort and we will be returning. Yes we would recommend this resort to you. But remember to relax and enjoy life as you are on vacation, don't complain about little things as it really don't add up to much. Thanks GP.

  • Stayed March 2013, 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
    • 4 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.
Surrey, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

My family and I stayed at the GRAND PALLADIUM for 11days. We stayed at the white sands section of the resort. The resort is compiled of Colonial, Riviera, White Sands, Kanteneh, and an adult section. There are 4 lobbies at this massive resort. First I want to say the ground are impeccable and the staff make sure they are clean and spotless. The grounds are very lush with tropical vegetation, flamingos, crocodile exhibit, iguanas around and looked like Mexican raccoons. The beach is beautiful...near the Riviera area it is very rocky where they have the salt water pools and outdoor cabana beds. I never went there but my husband checked it out. We stayed mainly on the COLONIAL pool, CLOSEST to the nicest softest sandy beach, the outdoor bar and BBQ food area and pool. The beach is gorgeous and yes there are a few areas where it gets rockier towards the Kantenah side however if you stay near the colonial it is fabulous. My husband and kids fed fishes in the ocean with bread and you will be amazed at all the tropical fish that come so quickly. The carribean sea is beautiful and the ocean breeze and hearing the waves was awesome ! Okay the rooms.....I emailed ahead of time to make sure we had a good room. Ours was located at the WHITE SANDS room 5920. Our room was super clean, bathroom was awesome with lots of soap, shampoo and conditioner...included was a jetted tub..only downfall no fan in the bathroom so lots of humidity...and much needed ! Kinda got stinky in there to tell you the truth ! So bring air freshner ! Beds are firm ...same with pillows...but okay. A/C WORKED like a charm ! The pools are awesome big ! Lots of room to swim and lots of privacy...pools are nice and cool so very refreshing ! Very beautiful pool area. Tons of cabanas but come early for towel reservation ! :) Now the food ! All I can say is awesome ! First night we came in at 5pm we went to the buffet and had large shrimp and lobster bisque ! Plenty of food...salads, veggie salads, meats, cheese, bread, fish , veal, Mexican all was good at the buffets. Note ! Near the colonial side the buffets changes with theme nights and they were awesome ! Gala night, Mexican, Italian etc.... Restaurants: We tried Japanese, Italian, Ribs and more were all fantastic ! The breakfast buffets were good too as they had a lot of tropical fruts, guava, mango, pineapple and passion fruit. I didn't like the food at the outdoor 24 hr place as it was mostly chick fingers, nachos, hamburgers and it was below average quality...I would say eat lunch at the buffet or the lunch buffet place near the pools....they had ice cream at the bar. Great salads too ! Drinks, were pretty good...a little sweet to my liking and ya sometimes they were not always the same from lobby to lobby but I stuck to my favs ! For those coffee drinkers in the morning don't get the coffee from your server it is instant...but don't worry every bar and buffet and restaurant has an espresso machine and just ask for an Americano with milk, espresso from the bar and you will not be disappointed ! BTW the bar at the beach has one too and my husband taught them all to make an iced latte ! As far as the property being large...YES we walked and walked and took the train and golf carts when we could. It made up for all the food we ate ! The staff work super hard to make sure the food was good and service. Few things I didn't like....resort large...but most are in the Mayan Riviera area....no fan in the bathroom so very humid and yucky smell...all in all awesome vacation and smooth all the way ! I would rate the resort at 8/10. Would I come back ? Well I don't like to try only 1 resort on the strip so probably will stay somewhere else so I have something to compare too ! :)

Room Tip: Make sure you tip the watiers...even the ones at the buffet they get paid nothing !
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Hanover, New Jersey, United States
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

this resort was awful. the food was decent for an all inclusive, there was absolutely ZERO nightlife for the group of 6 of us late 20s and early 30's. i do not drink beer abd all the liquor was so watered down that i couldnt catch a buzz. the drinks are also way too sweet. i would recommend this for families who like to go to bed early and do not drink or like to party. also, the pools had no music and the only 2 places to eat for breakfast are right next to each other on one side of the resort and offer the same exact menu. why not put one on each side?

Room Tip: the beds are so uncomfortable. the rooms are pretty and there is no lock on the bathroom door. get...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service

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Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alvor, Portugal
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

We spend a week All Inclusive and it was an excellent and relaxing stay. The resort, the room, the lobbys, the staff, the food, the beach, all verry good.

There are however 3 items that I have to mention:

1. When we went to the A La Carte Restaurants the staff always said that the restaurant was full, and if we wanted t have dinner, we had to wait 45 minutes / 1 hour. And looking into the room, we saw lots of free tables. When asked why were all of those free tables, they always say that there are people in the waiting list. Well... That´s [--], there´s no waiting list, there´s no overbooking, they just don´t want to have the restaurants full. The are always half capacity. We realize that in the 2nd time we tried to have dinner in a A La Cart Restaurant (the mexican one). The guy said that we had to wait 45 minutes but we said that we would wait, 5 minutes later we were sitted and the free tables (half cappacity) weren´t occupied durring our meal.

2. We wanted to rent a small car and we went to the Colonial lobby where it was a rental company. The price was 129 USD per day!! We went to Playa del Carmen and we rented by 35 USD per day. Everyting in the hotel is very expensive. The tours are, in my opinion, a robbery. You can rent a car and go by yourserf, or go by Van (2 USD person) to Playa del Carmen and buy the tours there.

3. The cigarrets are very expensive in the hotel shop, 10 USD each pack! In any shop outside the hotel you can get it by 3 USD)

  • Stayed May 2013, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Appleton, Wisconsin, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2013

The resort was huge and the grounds were very well kept. The pools and beach did not feel crowded because of the size of the resort. Seemed like the staff was quick to point out that you were not In the right but did not tell you what to do or where to be. Not as helpful as employees of other resorts we have stayed at. Room was sub par to say the least. Paid more for the mayan suite but did not receive it. Tried to resolve the situation but staff did not seem to understand or care. A/c did not work in half the room and toilet kept running at all times. Watched bar staff lick the dew off of the outside of the pina colada containers and buffet staff take food off the counters and place back in with fresh food. Both myself and my wife got sick on seperate days. Needless to say we will NEVER be staying at this resort again!!!!!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Antonio P, Resident Manager at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 5, 2013
Dear Andy,
I'm sorry to see that you didn't have a good stay in our resort and I can tell you that if there was any problem with the room you reserved and the room you were provided, the normal procedure would be to inform our front desk or ask for a Manager, I have checked our internal reports and I haven't seen any situation regarding our Mayan suites but it also would be better if you please contact us and we will try to help you if there was some kind of mistake.
Regarding the issues about our staff I'm sorry if any of them was not professional, I will pass your comments to our Food and Beverage Manager but I can tell you that we never had a situation like the one you mentioned. It also would have helped to inform to our Front Desk so we can identify the person you mentioned. We have around 1500staff working here and they do a very hard work every day.

Antonio Parrado Rodríguez
Director Residente / Resident Manager
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa
Grand Palladium Riviera Resort & Spa
The Royal Suites Yucatán
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wisconsin
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2013

I didn't think this resort was that great! There were hardly any American speaking travelors. I didn't think the staff was helpful at all and weren't as friendly as the last resort we had stayed at. The rooms were just ok. The resort was really big! There were basically no activities by the pool and what they did have wasn't all the interesting,last resort we stayed at had lots of fun activities and the activity people were great! We ate at one of the beach bars and there were raccoons everywhere kinda gross!!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Antonio P, Resident Manager at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 23, 2013
Dear 618mandy,
Thank you for your review, I take note of the points you mentioned and we will work on it.

Regards,

Antonio Parrado Rodríguez
Director Residente / Resident Manager
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa
Grand Palladium Riviera Resort & Spa
The Royal Suites Yucatán
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa

Address: Carretera Chetumal-Puerto Juarez Km, 256-100 | Municipio Solidaridad, Akumal 77710, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Akumal
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Akumal
#8 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Akumal
#9 Spa Hotel in Akumal
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Akumal
#13 Family Hotel in Akumal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa is located on a spectacular, private Caribbean beach-front complex that boasts of 800 meters of white, fine sand and turquoise blue waters. Guests of the Grand Palladium White Sand are invited to use the facilities provided by the adjoining Grand Palladium Colonial Resort & Spa, the Grand Palladium Kantenah Resort & Spa, and the Grand Palladium Riviera Resort & Spa (excluding the Royal Suite facilities). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Palladium White Sand Hotel Akumal
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort And Spa
Palladium White Sands
Grand Palladium White Sands Resort
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa Riviera Maya/Akumal, Mexico

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