First and foremost don't think twice about staying in this beautiful property. In one word...elegance! We stayed in this property the week of 12/16/13-12/22/13, wanted to escape the California winter, as if there is such a thing? Anyway, I'm going to make this review, short, precise and sweet!
Pros: The grounds of this property is its best asset. It reminded my husband and I of a palace in Hawaii in a tropical heaven. The lobby by far was one of our best favorite features that the hotel has to offer. The rooms was ample, clean, trendy and almost every room has a sea view, always a plus in my book. The palace has an amazing pool that has a swim up bar (hey!), and it serves as the meeting place for the entire pool, that is if you drink of course. There were always enough lounge chairs available in the pool area, the only thing is that you must have someone be there early enough to reserve it for you. Otherwise, you will end up getting one but it won't be anywhere near the pool. The pool side service was impeccable. Bottom line If you tip them well, they will take care of you, if not? be prepared to be ignored for a short while that is, so don;t be hesitant to be generous. Just remember you would have spend nearly double in another property in the US for a wonder of this caliber. The beach is simply gorgeous, long and wide, warm and let's not forget shallow! I'm not that great of a swimmer.If you don't get a lounge chair near the pool there are plenty available by the chair. By the way if have have traveled down south you may already know that there are usually a ton of vendors trying to make a living and after a while that can be a nuisance. Well, not to worry that ones trying to make a living are gentle, easy going and understand that no, means no and they will leave alone without disturbing you every minute. Everyday around 12 o clock the entertainment crew comes our and lightens the mood by providing entertainment, aquatic activities and they are really good about engaging the crowd. At 2:00 p.m. everyday the hotel will have a bbq party, which was a hit every time that we were there, the food looked delicious, the crowd loved it and it was nice to have the pool to our selves everyone in a while. When it comes to food, this hotel has a variety that you will not find anywhere else, because we tried them all, and we loved them all. I guess with the exception of the Mexican Restaurant. It's only flaw was the margaritas. They were watered down, tasteless, and a total disappointment. Worst Margarita I ever had, and if I had to chose a restaurant that needed improvement, it would be this one for the following reasons: food (ok), drinks (disappointment), service (questionable at best), and lastly the poor selection in the buffet. Our favorite restaurants by far were the all you can eat buffet and Krystal (you must get a reservation there). *we found a loop hole on how to get reservations, hit me up if you want the details). Another great asset that this company offers, it's the entertainment at night. Every night at 10:00 p.m. there was a show that was simply fun to watch. The professionals dancers provide the viewers with a mixture of broadway, culture and laughter that should not be missed. Another favorite feature was the privilege to visit other RIU properties in the beach and be able to access every amenity available e.g. pools, bars, discos, entertainment etc. Lastly, kuddos for the attentiveness and hospitality that was one of a kind. We miss you already!!!!
Cons: There are only four public restrooms in the entire property. Two located in the lobby and two located underneath the buffet, which translates to people may or may not be taking the time to use the restroom when they need to (use your imagination). If you are by the beach or in the pool area the only restroom are located a little ways, which may hinder people ability to actually make the walk. The pool entrances need railings of some kind as the few handicap people that we saw struggled to get in and out. The food can be repetitive in the adjacent small buffet, but it does the trick. The entertainment, while fun can also be a nuisance as if you are trying to read or relax, it's impossible when they are screaming from the top of their lungs. Another thing that was slightly annoying was the amount of brown nosing that came out of entertainment director towards certain ethnic groups and not others. Let's just say that it gets annoying after a while. When it comes to the beach, the only drawback was that we saw eels, sting rays and other non identifiable sea life which make you question what else is out there. I heard from one of the other patrons that they saw dolphins coming out feed early in the morning, which would have been great to see. DO NOT UNDER ANy CIRCUMSTANCES take a bath, I got a horrible fungus infection on my leg after taking two baths. The last thing that I thought was slightly a con was the distance between the hotel and Puerto Vallarta, it can be up to $70 each way. Remember ask before you enter the vehicle about the price and try to negotiate. Hotels in Mexico no longer exchange American dollars which means that you need to go to the nearest bank located 15 minutes away in the next big town. I also found a loop hole for this so hit me up if you want the info. We are certainly coming back as my son has asked if he can work there when he gets older, since moving into permanently is not an option. Enjoy amigos!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.