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Reviewed November 28, 2012

We stayed in November 2012, the hotel was lovely, very modern and the service was great. The staff couldn't do enough during our stay and made us feel special. The only downside was the weather was a bit cloudier and windier than we expected but that's not the hotels fault. We were some times annoyed by other guests slamming their room doors on a regular basis, but generally had a great time. Excellent range of international drinks, food was generally very good.

  • Stayed: November 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Tlemon62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2012

Hi, I need help. I am half way through booking this hotel for myself and my partner, however i am getting told mixed things about the bed types? Can anyone help? ...Thomson staff told me they only have 2 single beds in every room, Thomson brochure tells me every room comes with either 2 double beds or 1 king size bed, and the Riu Palace Peninsula website shows pictures of both but doesn't actually state what you get....i would be booking a standard junior suite, not the jaqoozi one. So guys.. Please give your feedback!! Thanks.

Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Meg K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2012

My boyfriend and I just returned from a 4 night stay at Hotel Riu Palace Peninsula (We are 28 and 29 respectively, from Brooklyn, NY). We decided to spring for the Villa Jacuzzi suite and so happy that we did. Our room was located in another building (not the main hotel) in a VIP area with its own private pool, bar, and access to the Kulinarium Restaurant. The villas are huge. We were on the 3rd floor, however, there are no elevators! We didn't mind because we are used to hiking up our 4th floor walkup every day anyway but it is worth noting for people who prefer an elevator. The bed was huge and so comfortable, plenty of TV channels for when we were hanging out in the room, and the shower was massive with a rainfall shower head. We had a jacuzzi on our balcony which we used twice. It took awhile to fill up but was so worth it.

Our first day we hit up the Trinidad bar near the pools. Gilberto and Harry (the bartenders) were a ton of fun. We had a great time. However, they got us completely wasted. Harry kept making fruity shots for the whole bar. It was awesome, I'm not complaining, but I definitely would tread lightly if I ever went back to that bar (which we didn't, but for other reasons). As far as the drinks, I was slightly disappointed. I wanted to spend the week drinking margaritas but they were gross. They tasted like they were diet, or made with sweet and low. I could barely drink it. The other drinks were way too sweet. I hate overly sweet drinks, and even more, overly "fake sugar" tasting sweetness. I ended up sticking to my usual vodka and soda which they made perfect.

We didn't have too many complaints about the food. Most of it was good, but not fall-over-drooling-good. The star dishes to us were the Sea Bass, and the Ceviche starter at the Kulinarium restaurant. To die for. Seriously. The Italian restaurant was decent. The buffet was decent, some things really great, some not so much. They have an omelet bar at breakfast which is good. The pancakes and bacon are great too. I'd steer clear of the sausage. And definitely go for the taco bar at lunch! Amazing salsas. I was a HUGE fan of the ice cream bar at lunch every day, as well.

The only odd thing about the restaurants is that we couldn't order real drinks. They had plenty of wine, beer, and champagne. But when we wanted a cocktail, they couldn't get it for us even though every bar on the property had the liquor flowing all day. The Mexican restaurant was odd because they had a buffet to start but then they served the main course and dessert. The tortilla soup was amazing, and I personally loved the flan as well. Just don't fill up on the buffet appetizers.

Another thing to note about the restaurants is that you need reservations for most of them and they only have 2 times. 6:30pm or 8:45pm. We felt like 6:30 was too early but by 8:45 we were starving, plus we missed half the entertainment by the time we were done eating. I wished they had a 7:30 or 8pm time instead. With all of that said, there isn't a restaurant there that I wouldn't try again.

The service was great the entire trip. Very attentive staff, making sure they clear your plates away, refill your water, and ask if you need anything often. We only encountered maybe 2 or 3 staff members who seemed completely uninterested in serving us. The housekeeping was a bit slow for my taste but that might be because we were in the villas and they have to carry the cleaning supplies upstairs. Not sure why but our room didn't get cleaned until roughly 3pm most days. We still tipped them every day though.

The beach is a little rocky on one side as others have said. It didn't bother us one bit. It was still beautiful, I guess the only issue is getting in the water on that side, you'd have to hop down from the rocks, but it's nothing dangerous. If you get a chair on the other side, there are no rocks and it's a beautiful beach with nothing in the way. There were always a ton of chairs available. The wait staff was constantly coming around serving drinks all day from 9am! Such a relaxing experience. I highly recommend tipping those guys, they work so hard!

They have activities every day like "stretching class" and "Navy SEALS training" and Zumba on the lawn by the main pool. We weren't interested in doing anything but laying on the beach or poolside every day. The Navy SEALS trainer guy was super aggressive and annoying, running around the beach yelling and aggressively recruiting (pressuring) people to exercise. The photographer was also aggressive. She would come close and take peoples' pictures without asking. We saw a few people try to shoo her away but to no avail.

Overall we had a great trip. We ate breakfast, laid on the beach, ate lunch, laid by the VIP pool/swam, went back to the room to nap, then had dinner. Every day. It was the perfect routine. We have never felt so relaxed. We had considered going to an adults only resort because we wanted an ultra relaxing vacation but I have to say, the children at this resort didn't bother us one bit. They were definitely around, but it was easy to tune out anything mildly annoying (like kids playing and yelling). Not an issue at all.

The entertainment was great. We only caught it twice but enjoyed it both times. They had a show on the stage with a ton of tables and seating and a live band. After the show was over, the band kept playing songs, some top 40 and some spanish songs. People were up and dancing. It was very entertaining. They also had a beach party while we were there. They had a fire show and a DJ which was pretty cool to watch. It was nice to have another option to entertain us instead of turning in early or feeling obligated to go on one of the late night club excursions they offer (not our style).

I would recommend this hotel to anyone looking for a relaxing and fun all-inclusive vacation!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank onmymaryway15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 26, 2012

Well let me start by saying I am one of the most easy going persons in the world and reading the reviews prior to this trip I was trying to figure out how anyone could give this place a bad review.

This was my 12th time to Cancun, the first time for my wife and this was our honeymoon. I have stayed at many different resorts in Cancun, and this was my second time at a RIU resort. I stayed at RIU Cancun last year which for me was "ok" but decided to give RIU one more shot.

We arrived at the resort very late on Nov 16th and it was amazing. The lobby was very welcoming and our reception was very warm and friendly. They gave us an upgrade to the VIP area in the villas where the room was breath taking and the view when we woke up in the morning was just incredible. The room had two jacuzzis one out on the balcony as well. The one in the room however didnt work and was still not working after they worked on it for an hour and said it was fixed. It was kind of chilly outside so we opted not to use the jacuzzi out there. This wasn't a big deal though there are others in the spa area as well.

We were at the pool in the VIP area the next day relaxing when we were approached by one of the servers who told us we had to leave that area because the wrist band we were wearing did not allow us to be in that area. I told him our room was right upsatair overlooking the area where we were sitting and he did not believe me. He asked for our room number and names and for me this was very embarrassing because other guest were observing this as it transpired. We told him it was fine for him to check with the front desk but we were not leaving the area because our room was in that area. He later returned with no apology but then tried to offer us something to drink, which we refused. It was not until after I asked him if he verified the names at the front desk did he confirm that we were authorized to be in that area, again no apology for the embarrasment. I do put some blame on the reception at the front desk for giving us the wrong wrist bands but I believe that the way it was handled at the pool by the server was also part of the problem.

The food was ok, for the buffet I really didn't have very high expectations because they are usually average. We didn't get a chance to try any of the restaurants as they were booked 2 days in advance. I went down to the customer service area to book the very next day after our arrival at 8:15 in the morning and was placed on standby list for the following evening late sitting but never heard anything about a cancelation. It didn't matter because the night we were on standby for the restaurant I got violently ill from the buffet at lunch.

I am not sure what I ate but my body reacted to it after about an hour, my body temperature dropped drasticly and I was shivering uncontrollably (I am normally sweating if the temperature is above 40 degrees). I was going to the bathroom every 15 minutes and my stomach was hurting. I have a iron clad stomach and I eat just about anything with no problems ever, so for me to be sick from food was very surprising to me. I ended up calling the front desk to see if they had a nurse on staff. (other resorts I have stayed at in the past had a nurse on staff, I never had to use them but they were there) They told me that they didn't have a nurse and if I needed to get some medication I should send my wife out to find a pharmacy to pick up what I need. I found this very hard to believe that the hotel took no responsibility for me getting sick from their buffet and that they wanted me to send my wife by herself at night in Mexico to find a Pharmacy. I requested to speak to the manager and after a long detailed conversation of every item I ate at the buffet and refuting all the other possible reasons she thought made me sick, the manger decided that she could call the pharmacy to have them deliver some medicine that I requested. Initially she told me it would be delivered to my room but when the pharmacy arrived they called my room for payment and my wife went down to pick up the medication. I was very disappointed in the lack of responsibility that the hotel took in regards to making me ill.

One other minor issue was the fact that we were honeymooning and my wife had seen the decorative animals and flowers that were received by some people that have been posted on tripadvisor. After a couple days she asked me about it and I thought well maybe they hadn't gotten around to it so I ended up tipping the room attendant to surprise her when we returned to the room. It was beautifully done and the room attendants were very nice and friendly. I just wished we wouldnt have had to ask but my wife was surprised and very pleased. (I think she suspected that I requested it)

We checked out as scheduled the morning after my illness from the buffet so all I ate was a muffin and some tea, I was scared to touch anything else. Upon check out there was no inquiry as to how we enjoyed our stay or even a thank you for staying at the hotel.

This property is very beautiful but I don't think I will ever stay here again or another RIU resort. There are many more properties in Cancun that offer so much better quality and personal service for the same price or less.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank smorr17013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 26, 2012

My wife and I have been to 3 Riu's and would def say this has by far been the Best. We payd for the Villa suits and at the time of payment was told it would be Over 18 years of age. We got there to find scremaing kids in the pool and below or villa. We were def let down by this as we didnt get what we paid for But the staff in the restuaurants and bars made up for it. They def have more work to do especially cleaners and Mini bar staff. We had cleaners show up on two occaisions at 930 and night to clean Out of the 11 days we were there our mini bar was filled 4 times. I have to say the VIP restaurant was well worth it By FAR THE Best restaurant of any riu's we have stayed at. The alcohol was well above par when comapred to other riu hotels. The villas do need to offer more VIP ammenities as the rest of the pools got the same service we did. In my opionion the Villas at this point are just not worth it. Untill they get rid of the kids. We will be back to this properity again in April once they implement the age restriction. Other then that I will say the hotel is gorgious and do not regret us choosing them. The customer service reps are just amazing and bend over backward to make sure your Happy. We went to the las americas and the Caribe and trust me th palace beach is way ahead as are the Staff. The Main bell hops was amazing as were the bartenders in the lobby bar and sports bar, Our other suggestion would be open the coffee shop earlier the 10 am common its a coffe shop.

Room Tip: Save your money on the Villas till they offer more amenities the only real bonus is the VIP restaurant However they let regular NON VIP guests eat there
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank JillandJames B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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