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Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

In cooperation with: Visit Mexico
Tolland, CT
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472 posts
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Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

I was just wondering , after being at a couple of resorts in RM , is the Grand really, really worth the extra $$$$, each resort has it flaws, nothing can be perfect, the only thing the Grand has against alot resorts is "Adults Only". What do you all think? Please help, am trying to convince hubby!

Waterloo, Canada
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45 reviews
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1. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

What are you comparing it to? In comparison to the family friendly resorts in the same complex, it is definitely worth the extra money. There is simply no comparison between them. You will have a much nicer room, upgraded quality of food and drink, better facilities and most important for a truly relaxing vacation you will not have a screaming baby or roudy kids interupting your peaceful meal or splashing in the pool (I love kids but not on my vacation).

Let us know what alternatives you are looking at and it will be easier to answer the question. There are also lots of really nice adult only resorts which are less expensive then the Grand.

N.H.
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4 reviews
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2. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

It also depends on what time of year you go. We just got back from the Iberostar Del Mar and had a great Ocean View room in building 10 on the beach. The resort was only about 60% full and there wern't that many kids. I walked thru the Grand and took a dip in their pool. The rooms and food may be better but I personally didn't think it was worth the extra money.

Stowe, Vermont
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3. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

Bob, if you didn't eat the food, stay in a room, or experience the service, you'd certainly come away with the impression that it isn't worth the extra money :)

My husband and I do think it is worth the money. We have just returned from our second trip to the Grand. Before the first one, I had a hard time convincing him that we should stay at the Grand. Now we doesn't want to stay anywhere else.

I do think it depends what you are looking for, too. The beauty of the Grand for us is what is doesn't have: no lines at the buffet, no waiting for drinks at a walk up beach bar, no towel cards, no children. The beach at the Grand is spacious, with ample room between the many palapas. The beach at the Lindo/Maya/Del Mar was so crowded it was almost unbelievable.

You'd really be paying for a gorgeous room with a very comfortable mattress, fantastic gourmet food, and very good to excellent service (depending on what building you are in and your assigned butler). And they manage to do all of this without an ounce of snobbery.

I was at Excellence Riviera in May and liked it, but it doesn't hold a candle to the Grand.

What other resorts are you thinking of?

Erie, Colorado
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for Playa Paraiso
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28 reviews
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4. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

I have stayed at Royal Hideaway (more expensive than the Grand) and that resort used to be pretty close to perfect, but now has major beach erosion issues. Also stayed at Cieba del Mar, Riu Palace Mexico, Occidental Grand Xcaret and Iberostar Lindo. We have always felt the extra money for a high end resort was completely worth it.

The food is better, the service is better and the surroundings are more luxurious.

That said, whether it is worth it depends on what you want out of your vacation.

And the "Adults Only" thing is big, it makes a big difference at the beach, pools and restaurants if there are kids around.

Good luck with your decision.

Chicago, IL
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28 posts
9 reviews
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5. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

My husband and I just got back from the Grand last night. It is worth every penny! This has changed our minds about AIs. We have traveled extensively to Mexico, the Caribbean and Hawaii and stayed at the top rated hotels. This hotel is over the top with its architecture, manicured grounds, rooms, food and service. I cannot say enough. You will not be disappointed.

Media, PA
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1,142 posts
15 reviews
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6. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

I'll keep it short.....YES!

New Jersey
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1,353 posts
42 reviews
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7. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

We just got back a few hours ago from our third trip to the Grand and it is still an awe inspiring experience for us. This is definitely a case of getting what you pay for-and much, much more. Although it costs a bit more than some other resorts, we still think it's a steal. We probably couldn't afford a comparable vacation here in the U.S. even if we could find somewhere as beautiful.

As for guests from other resorts coming to the Grand to take a dip in their pool, I saw that happen and it really annoyed me. Sorry, but I'm tired and depressed about being back in 20 degree weather, after leaving perfection. I'll be writing my review when I finish settling in and will mention that kind of thing and hope hotel management will notice and security will be more diligent.

So, the answer is YES,YES,YES

hello heidi!

Mesa, Arizona
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7 reviews
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8. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

Definitely. In my case (Dec 13-18) my travel agent found a good deal for me. Otherwise I normally cannot afford the Grand. For instance next April the Grand would cost me more than twice the money of The Grand Sirenis which is further south.

Compare it pricewise to other hotels. I would say if its under $700 difference, go for it. After that amount think about it.

You wont go wrong if you choose the Grand. Besides the stuff everyone mentioned (I met Spotsmom!), there is free internet, no towel cards, premium liquor just for the asking, decent room service, and most days they leave the daily newspaper on your door (sometimes just the paper, sometimes in a nice cloth bag which I brought home and will be great for packing small items.)

At the time I went there was no towel game, but I imagine when the hotel is 100% occupancy, there would be some sort of towel game.

Stowe, Vermont
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61 reviews
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9. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

Hi Claire and Karen, and hello Skelt14 in Tolland (I am originally from Storrs).

I think the best way to justify it is: 1) you only live once; 2) it is unreal to be treated like kings and queens for a week.

This is a classy place, and as I have said, without any snobbery. This is not the type of place where you have theme buffet nights on the beach with a donkey and big Mexican hats. Honeymooners and anniversary folks won't have a banner on their door announcing who they are. It is as social as you want it to be - the main pool bar area is social, the tranquility pool is very quiet and peaceful, and the beach is spacious.

This place does not try to cram in as many people as possible around a small pool area or to cram in as many beach chairs as they can. When I think of the Grand, I think, "space."

This is the type of place where you walk around in awe and look at the landscape, the architecture, the vistas and just go, "Wow."

We were waited on hand and foot. The room is cleaned twice a day. The food in the ala carte restaurants is on par with any haute cuisine big city place. Photos don't do the place justice - everywhere you look is art, statuary, fine mosaic tilework, paintings, etc... There is no "crud in the corners" as Coxy put it. It is spotlessly clean.

The staff is professional and very friendly. The food is amazing - with presentation unreal - think: sugared rose petals. The drinks are sublime. They go out of their way to make your vacation an experience. I especially loved that after dinner at the gourmet and steak places they wheeled a little cart over to the table with liquors like Grand Marnier, etc... and gave you what you want. If you ask for a glass wine, they bring the bottle. You can have champagne by the bottle at the quiet pool. It is just amazing.

The number of pool and beach chairs is about double the ratio of any adult-only resort I have been too. Plenty of seating, plenty of shade if you seek shade. If I wanted a first row beach palapa, I went down before breakfast, only because I was on the left side of building 70, where there are a few wicker cushioned chairs and we preferred those to the regular beach loungers. If, not there was plenty of beach seating. The entire beach area in front of the main pool has not one chair or palapa so that the ocean view is not obstructed. They could have easily planted more chairs there, but chose not to. The amount of space on the beach is great - the palapas are not very close together. Take a look at photos of the Lindo/Maya beach area and see how closely packed the chairs are.

The spa pool with all of the hydrotherapy jets is a work of art, with a retractable glass ceiling. The pool is heated. It is great place to spend some time if it is cold or overcast, as it was for a few days of our vacation. The spa pool is free, unlike at ERC, where we didn't know it wasn't free and we were rudely asked to leave the pool.

The main pool is salt water with chairs in the shallow water, while the tranquility pool is chlorinated, I believe.

They will bring you whatever you want. I don't think they say "no" much. If you want liquor by the bottle, they will bring it to your room and keep you supplied all week. We didn't care about that, but they kept us supplied with chilled bottles of champagne the entire week, as well as an elaborate chocolate Christmas themed thing.

If it is an anniversary or a special occasion, just ask your butler. They will do something special for you. Think the typical towel art, a drawn bubble bath in the jacuzzi with rose petals and more rose petals on the floor.

This trip, we brought my husband's sister with us. She said it is one thing to hear about someone's experience and to see the photos, but another altogether to experience it.

The only negatives that I can think of is that the shower stall is small, and it is hard to shave one's legs, and that the hot water sometimes ran very hot or super cold in the shower. Also, I got rather tired eating gourmet everything all of the time and started to crave something simple. That was remedied by having a burger with excellent fries for lunch delivered to my beach chair, or by visiting the dinner buffet, which was very, very good.

It should be noted that this resort is European in flavor, design and tone. Food is truly continental, and you will hear many languages being spoken.English speakers were not the majority either time we were there -probably about 50%.

The recent review where a lady complained about no orange juice for her drink and no butter for lobster made me go, "hmmmm." Maybe all of the raving about this place that I and others do sets up people to believe that there will not be issues. No orange juice? Switch to a different drink. No butter for lobster? Try a fancy sauce.

As I stated, my husband was initially very hesitant to spend the extra money for the Grand, but now he is spoiled. After our first visit to the Grand, we went to ERC and he didn't really like it much. So, we went back to the Grand, happily. The second trip was a terrific as the first.

BTW, the oceanfront room view is to die for. We were able to upgrade for an additional $30/night and it is well worth it. Some folks get upgraded for free, but it appears to be hit and miss.

Erie, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Playa Paraiso
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4,150 posts
28 reviews
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10. Re: Is Iberostar Grand really worth the extra $?

Butter for lobster is not the norm in Mexico, or Spain. A friend told me a story of being in Spain and asking for butter for her lobster and they brought her the foil wrapped pats of butter - LOL!

But I imagine at the Grand if you asked for drawn butter, they would bring it to you (I saw this in fact). If you ask, you often receive, which is one of the reasons it is "worth it."