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“So Lovely!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort by Karisma

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El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort by Karisma
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Km 45 Carretera municipio de solidaridad, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #2 of 10 hotels in Playa Paraiso
Vancouver, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“So Lovely!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

My husband and I just returned from our honeymoon at El Dorado Royale, and it was so fantastic. I am a skeptic, so I read all the negative reviews on Trip Advisor, just to see what people were saying. I have to tell you all, I have no idea why people didn't enjoy their time there.

The grounds were beautiful, and HUGE, just perfect for a long walk together. The food was pretty darn great (JoJo's fish and chips are awesome!), the staff was friendly, the room was wonderful, and the service was superb. Was it all perfect? No, of course not. But if you go in expecting perfection, you're sunk right from the start. We loved this place! We were spoiled rotten, and felt like we had definitely made the right choice in resorts.

As to the 'time share' thing that people are complaining about... yes, you *may* be asked if you want to do a '30-minute tour', where they will try and sell you a suite there. But we were asked, and simply said, "no thanks", and that was the end of it. It simply wasn't an issue.

Yes, the beach wasn't postcard perfect, but it suited our tanning and swimming needs just fine. There are breakers in the water, and that's fine by me! I'd rather not be swamped by a mondo wave, thanks. It's just common sense, considering the location.

So, all in all, we were VERY impressed. We had room 507, and we feel that it was the perfect suite! Swim-up, close to restaurants, and far enough away from the bars that we didn't hear them at night. The resort is pretty quiet, so if you're looking for a killer nightlife, you may want to research other places. But El Dorado was perfect for us. LOVED the 'adults only' thing!!

My one complaint? Well, especially in the restaurant Kampai (great spring rolls, by the way!), they pump some sort of sickly sweet scent into the air in the bathroom that was pretty terrible. They do it in the hotel lobby too, but not nearly as bad as Kampai. So keep that in mind, and maybe use the bathroom elsewhere if you dine in Kampai.

Thank you El Dorado Royale for making our honeymoon absolutely wonderful. We wouldn't change a thing, and we'll definitely be back.

Room Tip: 507 was perfect!
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,386)
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English first
Augusta, Georgia
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

El Dorado was a very nice location. The rooms were very nice and our second floor ocean view was great. The food, advertised as gourmet, was, but so much so that you grew tired of it quickly. The saving grace was the Pizza beachside and the Mexican Restaurant at night. Having complained, I must say that they had the best breakfast buffet and the best eggs that I've had anywhere. All those things together, plus our side trips made for a very nice trip.
However, the beach was filled with barriers (to stop erosion). With the barriers and the rough surf, forget swimming or snorkeling.
The most disappointing element of the trip was the staff's unhappiness. It felt as though you were vacationing at a palace with slaves working as staff. Gratuities were expected to supplement their salaries, and to get them promotions, they had to have customer recommendations. We payed about six hundred dollars in tips, just for basic services. It seemed the hotel had locals at their mercy for employment and used that leverage. My husband and I came away feeling that Mexico was not a vacation site we would ever use again.
The only reason that I would recommend you go would be to help the locals.

Room Tip: Second floor ocean view before a ocean walk out. You can't see the ocean from the ground floor.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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Vermilion, AB. Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

This resort is a awesome place to relax in the sun, and enjoy exceptional food. We returned from our second trip there in March. They have a awesome buffet breakfast, (you can also order from a menu.) No prebooking required for the al acarte restaurants either, we liked to show up early before the lineup started. Also room service was great. We arrived at the resort after the restaurants was closed both times and they were a god send! We went to the culinary theatre the evening before we came home. it was very good. We decided to pay for the special wines that was paired with the courses, and were glad we did. There is such a thing as great food being paired with the right wine. Awesome meal!
Beach: not exactly overjoyed with the beach. They have unsightly sand bags that help stop the waves from busting into shore, but that is really my only complaint about this resort. And that is such a minor detail, the ocean is still beautiful beyond the bags.
if you wanted a beach lounge chair in the shade by (Jo-Jos)the bar/restaurant you have to get up early, but if you are a sun worshipper there is no shortage of loungechairs otherwise.
We requested a second floor ocean view, which was wonderful. Leaving the window open at night so we can hear the surf is a favorite for my husband and I. The suite was redone, and so nice! I have to admit that I'm not fond of the open concept of glass between the bathroom and the bed though. Can't turn on a light without it shining on the person still sleeping.
We had 2 rainy days out of the 7 days we were there, but that was no big deal to us. We were there to relax, read our books, enjoy great food,and enjoy the exceptional service.
And our concierge staff, Carlos and Adela were so great. Always close by to ask if there was anything we wanted and needed. Thank you so much for your attention to detail.
We'll be back!

  • Stayed February 2013, 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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Ottawa, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

This is a really nice place. Beach is lovely, really nice, entire resort is lovely. Food was delicious, staff were fantastic. We really enjoyed our week there in April 2013. Loved the morning outdoor yoga, indulged in excellent massages. The entire resort has a calm, relaxing feel to it, since it's kids-free. There's just one noisy, party pool, and the rest of the very large resort is quiet. The room though was so-so, a frequent musty smell (super common in the Caribbean) except it did have great pillows (super uncommon in resort hotels for some reason). We really enjoyed our week there in April 2013. We upgraded to an ocean-facing room with the fun swim-up feature, which we thought was really worth it, but although we didn't stay there, we couldn't figure out what the benefits would be to staying at the pricier side-by-side Cassitas resort.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

We have just returned from our honeymoon at El Dorado Royale. We had high expectations, and these were exceeded in every way.

We stayed in a junior suite which was lovely and spotlessly clean. Towards the end of our stay we were upgraded to a swim up suite due to overbooking. It was lovely, but in all honesty in terms of the room, we preferred the junior suite as it felt a little cleaner and generally more comfortable than the swim up. We enjoyed the benefits of the swim up suite though!

The service provided by staff was excellent throughout our stay; nothing was too much hassle for anyone and we were never too far away from a cocktail! The restaurants were lovely, and the food was exceptional in most of the restaurants.

Would definitely recommend this resort and We will be returning as soon as we can. Don't listen to the reviews that moan about petty things, the place is amazing!

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey, USA
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013

I went to El Dorado Royale for 2 weeks on our honeymoon. Its better than it looks in the pictures. The staff was friendly and the resort is beautiful, especially the rooms. The rooms are so romantic and luxurious. For one week we stayed in a jacuzzi swimup suite and for the following week my husband suprised me by upgrading us to swimup casita. Ofcourse the swimup casitas are more luxurious but both rooms were awesome! What I loved the most about this resort: Adults only, amazing food with plenty of options. Sometimes we went out to the restaurant for breakfast but mostly we had room service and they set it up for us outside next to the pool, so amazing!!! I enjoyed trying every restaurant on all different nights. My fav in regards to the food was the french toast breakfast, there was healthy restaurant next to the salt water pool that made amazing salads and smoothies but this resort is a great value because of the quality of the food and the state of the rooms. I would highly recommend this beautiful place for anyone wants the best but doesnt want to break the bank.

  • Stayed August 2012, 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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Ashford, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

Flew out to Cancun with First Choice on 28th Feb 2013 for two weeks.
Flight was great having booked extra leg room seats...well worth the money. Food on board better than expected.
Arrived mid afternoon to a tropical rain storm, heavy rain but warm.
Transfer took about 30 mins.
Arrived to a lovely champagne welcome at the hotel...check in very swift.
Beautiful reception area with a huge water feature.

ROOM
Allocated room 1017...one of the newly refurbished rooms, on the second floor, close to main reception.
Two double beds, jacuzzi bath, large shower, toilet, twin sinks, filter tea/coffee-machine, iron and board, good hair dryer, mini bar with beer- soft drinks-water (replenished regularly and included), balcony with seating and hammock, turn down service at night.
Our room was kept beautiful clean every day and the towels were changed daily....a small tip to the cleaner is appreciated but not expected.
There is a concierge allocated to every few blocks of room...this is we're you go to book anything or if you have any problems.

GENERAL
Hotel built on 450 acres....ECO Resort.....grow all there own produce in huge Eco greenhouses.....recycle everything....exceptionally clean and well looked after employing a huge amount of staff.
All Staff are very friendly saying OLA (hello) all the time.
There are golf buggies that go all over the hotel....if one is empty, jump on it to save your legs....you will eventually end up where you want to go....

PURPOSE OF TRIP
We were a party of four, two of which are divers. They wanted to dive the Cenotes.
Dived with Cenote Xperience....Nicos......had the most amazing time.

RESTAURANTS
You really are spoilt for choice.....I will not have it said that the quality of the food and the service is poor!!!
We were treated like royalty in all the restaurants, you would pay a lot of money for this quality of food in any top restaurant in the UK. All the restaurants are fine dining and yes you do have to dress up a bit in the evening but isn't it nice to do so!
The restaurants at lunch time DON'T expect you to dress up but they do like the ladies swim wear to be covered and no shirtless men....not too much to ask.
Yes you do have to eat early to avoid a wait, but even if you do have to wait you get given a buzzer and you just go and sit in one of the many bars and have a drink, you're on holiday for goodness sake....you're suppose to be relaxing.
All the restaurants served good quality Spanish house wine, we had Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and a sparkling blush champagne.
Only negative with the restaurants was that when we arrived it was quite cold in the evening and the air conditioning was on which made it very cold, a jumper/cardigan needed!.....however the hotel turned the air conditioning off after we'd been there a few days and it was much more present.

#D'Italia (under reception)
Italian restaurant, very nicely presented food, service a little slow but worth the wait.

#Cocotal (under reception)
Served a buffet breakfast and evening meals with a French flare.
OMG the breakfast in here was amazing, every thing you could ask for from healthy fruit smoothies, cooked with proper crispy bacon! and continental pastries. It also had a chocolate fountain. On top of all that you could have champagne every morning if you liked. The service was absolutely fantastic, the waiters were very attentive almost fighting over trying to serve you.
We always tipped the waiters in here simply because the deserved it.....$1 is enough each time....I believe in rewarding good service.
The Evening food in here was also exceptionally good, as I said it had a French flare. One of our party is vegetarian and she found this restaurant the best for choice for her needs.

#Rincon Mexican
We didn't like this restaurant much, we were expecting traditional Mexican food but we didn't get it....wouldn't waste your time when there's so many other lovely restaurants to choose from.

#Fuentes Culinary Theatre
This restaurant is an eating experience. You have to book this restaurant with your concierge as it only seats 40 people.
Basically you sit and watch the chief cook the dishes that you're going to eat. There are 5 Courses but the portions are very small, having said that we didn't come out of there feeling hungry, again the service was very good.
Only negative is that they try to sell you a wine package which is a different glass of wine with each course....$35, No pressure though, you can just have the house wine.
Having done it once we wouldn't necessarily do it again.

#Kampai Oriental Cuisine
In the Casitas part of the hotel
We loved this restaurant! Defiantly one of our favourites.
Chinese/Asian/Indian.
Served food at lunch time and in the evening.....get there early
We didn't eat here at lunchtime but we were told it was good.

#Jo Jo's Caribbean Cuisine
Served food at lunch time and in the evening.
We only ate here at lunchtime, lovely burgers!.
Right on the beach, stunning!

#D'Italia Casitas
In the Casitas part of the hotel.
Simply stunning restaurant, beautiful surroundings and exceptional quality food and service.
Get there early or be prepared to wait!

#La Isla International Cuisine
In a thatched building by one of the main swimming pools.
Served breakfast, lunch and evening meal.
Breakfast is A La Carte with a buffet for fruit and toast....it was ok but preferred Cocotal for breakfast.
Didn't have lunch but evening meal was lovely.

#Health Bar
Serves smoothies and fresh juices all day....yummy!
Also serve light lunches, great if you don't want too much.

BARS
There were numerous bars to choose from, they all served branded drinks if you asked and lovely cocktails.
Our favourite was the Martini Bar in the main reception, try the Eldorado Martini it will blow your mind!!
We also liked the Belini Bar in the Casitas part of the hotel above the Italian, very nice choice of Belini's

ENTERTAINMENT
There are a lot of things going on during the day if you want to get involved but we chose not to. The Evening entertainment all took place in the thatched Guacamayas theatre. There was usually a film being shown at 6-30pm followed by music. We didn't tend to go but were told that some of the shows were very good.

SPA
There were two spa's, one in the Royale and one in Casitas. There were people coming round the resort trying to sell treatments but there was no pressure selling. We didn't have any treatments as they were more expensive than in the UK. However the Spa's looked beautiful and were quite busy.

SWIMMING POOLS
Two large ones to choose from in Royale both of which get very busy. The whole towel reservation thing does happen so be up early. There are a number of smaller pools which don't get so busy so hunt them out as they're a lot quieter.

#BEACH
The beach is beautiful, there have been a lot of complaints about the sandbags but they aren't ugly, In fact they resemble rocks which attract marine life. This is an Eco Resort and they are there to protect and preserve the coast line, just remember that when your looking at them.
There are a lot of sun beds along both sides of the beach.....get up early to save the best spots.
Avoid the area around the beach volley ball court, it gets busy and load.

SUMMERY
We absolutely loved this hotel....
We have stayed in a lot of All Inclusive hotels mainly in Egypt, this is by far the best.
The hotel is mainly occupied by Americans who do like to party and are quite loud, but they are polite and friendly.
We will definitely be booking a return trip next year and have recommended it to all of our friends.

ONLY NEGATIVES
*The hotel do allow a lot of group bookings at the weekends by the Americans so the hotel does get very busy and noisy around these times.
*It is also a time share resort but this is usually only sold to the Americans so no pressure selling.
*We were a bit unlucky with the weather.....a cold spell coming down from Canada....had odd days of rain and it was quite chilly at night during the first week.......the restaurants and bars were quite cold as the air conditioning was on.......will take a few more warmer things next year.

THANK YOU TO ALL THE STAFF AT THE EL DORADO ROYALE RESORT FOR AN AMAZING HOLIDAY
SEE YOU NEXT YEAR..........

Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort by Karisma

Address: Km 45 Carretera municipio de solidaridad, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Romantic Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort by Karisma 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Conde Nast Traveler Readers’Top 100 Hotels in the world and a AAA Four Diamond Resort, El Dorado Royale is an adults-only destination that provides the ultimate in service in the ultimate setting.With more than a mile of sandy beach in Mexico's Riviera Maya, El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort, by Karisma offers an escape which no other destination can match. All the luxuries you can dream of, combined with an emphasis on personal attention to your every whim, make this an ideal location for a getaway. Travelers join us from around the world for romantic outdoor beach weddings or ceremonies in our intimate beachfront chapel, relaxing honeymoons, anniversary celebrations, or just much needed time off. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Dorado Royale Hotel Riviera Maya
El Dorado Royale Mexico
El Dorado Royale Cancun
El Dorado Royale Spa Resort
El Dorado Royale Resort
Eldorado Royale
El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort By Karisma Playa Paraiso, Riviera Maya, Mexico

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