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“Paradise in Playa”

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Grand Velas Riviera Maya
Ranked #3 of 211 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed January 29, 2013

I just got back from a quick four day get-away at this fabulous all-inclusive resort. I have stayed at many all-inclusives in Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Cozumel and Puerta Vallarta but this place completely surpassed any other resort I have stayed at. The grounds were impeccable--from the beach to the two huge pool complexes facing the beach, the beautiful Shangri-la-like jungle setting around the spa and the spa pool complex (our personal favorite). Service was top-notch as well. All of the waitstaff at the fabulous restaurants were wonderful, the food was superb--and the drinks were made with quality ingredients and liquor. Our room concierge was great too, and the all-inclusive room service menu was wonderful! We are already planning to return next year for another girls weekend away and we wouldn't go anywhere else.

Room Tip: We stayed at the Zen Suites which were substantially less expensive because they are not right on th...
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank dbmomto3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GVRM, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Grand Velas Riviera Maya, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share this wonderful comments with other travelers.
We would love to have the opportunity to host you again very soon and give you once more the good service you have already experienced but now with all the family .

Kind Regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 26, 2013

I brought 60 business associates to this resort for 4 days (obviously spending a lot of money) and extended my stay for 3 days for some personal time with my wife. To say we are disappointed is an understatement!! We've been to the beach twice and while they claim their is "butler" service on the beach, we never saw anyone, couldn't get any towels and I repeatedly had to go up to the bar for drinks (do you think someone would have noticed?). We've tried for two nights to eat at the Sen Lin restuarant and it's been closed both nights. So tonight we tried their signature restuarant, Cocina De Autor, and it's also closed and it's Saturday night!!!! The service we have recieved at the restaurants that are actually open has been very mixed, some OK, some very bad. We've had to wait extended periods for food, repeatedly ask for our drinks to be filled, ask for bread, ask for salt&pepper, even had a waiter get rude with us when my wife asked for a menu (it was a buffet but they also offered a la carte). Our "suite" is supposed to have butler service yet after 5 days here, I haven't seen anyone.
I stay all over the world in 5 star hotels & resorts and this place is not even close. Triple AAA should be embarrassed for giving this place a 5 diamond rating in 2012!!!

P.S. We have tiny ants ALL OVER our bathroom!!!

  • Stayed: January 2013
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12  Thank CotoCalifornia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GVRM, Public Relations Manager at Grand Velas Riviera Maya, responded to this reviewResponded January 29, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time of sharing your comments. We take very serious all the our guests feedback. And we already taking action in every point of your review.

We will share this review with the Restaurant Managers, Pool Concierge and Concierge Managment. In order to improve our services and keep the status we have earned.

We are very concerned on not filling your expectations and we are looking forward to serve you in a future.

Kind Regards

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013

What more can I say about this stupendous resort in the beautiful Riviera Maya.
It's an expensive resort but you get what you pay for and IMO it's well worth the price!
This beach-front property is gorgeous with several large pools, bars and awesome gourmet restaurants.
Unlike some other all inclusive resorts, this one really has high quality food and great beverages.
The staff is extremely polite and helpful and they'll go above and beyond to make sure you'll have a wonderful vacation.
Overall, this is a fantastic high-end family resort and we'll come back here next year!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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7  Thank SanDiegoLou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GVRM, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Grand Velas Riviera Maya, responded to this reviewResponded April 19, 2013

Dear Guest,

We are glad to know how incredible your experience was during your stay with us! Grand Velas Riviera Maya is strongly compromised with the excellence in every single way and your feedback is a proof that we are going on the right direction to fulfill our goal, your entire satisfaction. We would like to thank you for your wonderful comments and truly hope we have the opportunity to host you in future holidays!!.

Kindest regards,

Rogelio Vasconcelos

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013

A bit of our background first. We have had many All Inclusive vacations in the past 12 years, always to a different resort because there are so many to choose from. We have visited all over the Mayan Riveria, Punta Cana, Puerto Plata, Cancun...as well as Non All Inclusives in Hawaii, and USA.

I won't comment on rooms or beach, as others have covered that...except to say our room was everything we expected, plus a bit more....the beach was sandy, waves were wavy, we did go in past our waist, and if you watch your footing it is possible without foot protection.

This trip to Grand Velas Mayan Riveria was by far the best of food and service. I was part of a corporate event with about 600 ppl. We wore a special wrist band so the staff knew who we were. We didn't see a bill at any meal, nor were we presented with an empty hand looking for a tip...in fact, we were specifically told not to tip, as our company had made arrangements on our behalf. A couple of times I did tip anyway, and it seemed to make no difference. The staff were very friendly, always a smile and ready to help. Asking for directions, questions about food items, or even a special drink at the bar was answered with, " my pleasure".

2 times we rec'd exceptional service - At the beach, my daughter was badly sun burned from the previous day, yet still wanted to see the beautiful beach. We were met at the beach by Tayde, he helped us find a canopy day-bed. Showed us that the side by side beds would give extra protection from the sun, then he proceeded to drag to us a large beach umbrella that he positioned for even more protection! We were floored by his concern...and through the day his attentiveness with cold water, bar and snack service. On day 2 we had found a gem in Tayde.

That evening we met gem #2. He was assigned to our area at a full group dinner. Jose ( I am very upset that I didn't make note of his middle name..maybe Luis?) met me the first night at Bistro Rest. And he remembered I have a food allergy. Jose kept in contact with me through the courses in the meal to be sure that I was satisfied with the offerings. Always offering a replacement, ( I was fine as the meal was buffet, and he had walked me through the items to stay away from), I don't get meal service nearly as professional or with such concern for my well being as I do in my home town at restaurants that I visit regularly.

This is the type of 5 star service that is at Grand Velas.

Food offerings at all restaurants we visited were top notch too. Bistro for dinner and breakfast, Azule for all 3 meals as well as Lucca for dinner were where we ate and were pleased with the offerings and our final choices were yummy. ( I have never enjoyed steak at an AI before...I had many at Grand Velas). Room service was included, with a very extensive menue...again yummy.

I hope that next year I can be included with my corporate trip again, as Grand Velas is the destination for the 3rd time. I will keep working hard, and maybe I can.

I won't comment on value, as everyone has a budget...this prob would be out of my range, but we usually travel off season, so who knows if I could afford to go back without being part of a group. This gave me a lot of quality time with my daughter at a over the top luxury setting..maybe hubby next year.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled on business
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3  Thank lasekeye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2013

This was our first time staying at an all inclusive resort and overall it was wonderful. Our room was heaven with a large terrace overlooking the ocean, a plunge pool and an outdoor daybed. The view was amazing. The bed was comfortable, the room was very clean and the bathroom was my dream bathroom with a rain shower, separate jacuzzi tub, two sinks and all marble floor and walls. We staff at the resort provided superior service, were very friendly and nice, were professional and well trained....I hope that they are well compensated because the resort was very lavish and I think most people feel a bit guilty enjoying such lavishness in a third world country and want the locals to really benefit from their tourism spending.

We spent one morning at the spa (hydrotherapy and a massage) and it was very very relaxing, but not fully worth the $400 we paid for two persons. The hydrotherapy was amazing and unique, the spa staff were very attentive and professional and the massage was nice, but not the best I have ever had. If I went back, I would probably just do the hydrotherapy. The spa was the most beautiful spa I have ever been in...it is located in the jungle area of the resort which is a beautiful area.

The pools were amazing and the poolside service was perfect....drinks were delicious, cold and were not watered down. The pools and pool areas were all very clean and it was always very easy to get a great chair poolside. The beach was immaculate-clean and because the sand is coral sand it stayed refreshingly cool. I didn't feel comfortable swimming in the ocean however as there was always a high surf.

The food was one thing that I wasn't 100% satisfied with, maybe only 75% satisfied with. The French restaurant was the best food and had a gorgeous decor, but overall all of the restaurants served basically the same menu with a few tweaks so a bit more variety would have been nice. For example, each restaurant served about 5 entrees, a tenderloin steak, a shrimp dish, etc. The servings were a bit small too.

Overall we loved this resort and would gladly return. The charming, friendly, professional staff were a big part of what made our stay so wonderful along with the pools, the beauty of the resort, the ocean views, the hydrotherapy treatment at the spa, and our amazing room. The food needs a bit of improvement....that is our only suggestion and for a lavish resort of this calibre that is so professional that should be an easy fix.

Stayed: January 2013
1  Thank elizabethmacdonald
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 18, 2013

My husband and I have been to this resort twice and the property on Nuevo Vallarta as well. The staff is always top notch and the food spectacular. It is a very relaxing environment and the spa is out of this world--one of the best I've ever been too. My only complaints (if I had to come up with one)--both times we stayed on the main floor and found the hallways noisy--it is open concept with cement flooring, and both times we would be woken up by footsteps or conversation early in the am or late at night--it sounds like people are right in your room. Not sure if an upper floor would be better? All and all though we will go back. Not sure I would bring the kids for longer than a few days--it seems to be a more adult oriented venue.

Room Tip: Upper floor or away from the main lobby
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Jgw W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2013

This was our 2nd trip to Mexico, but out 1st to GV, and after our wonderful trip last year a big disappointment. This hotel seemed to geared very much towards for the vast amounts of Americans that holiday there. As a professional couple we like to sound our holiday spending quality with our 2 children aged 9 and 15. We were disappointed that most of the themed restaurants were booked most nights prior to our arrival, and we could not eat early even though the 2 nights we managed to get a table at , after pleading to get a table, we were the only ones there for the whole hour. My children found the hotel very quiet and boring, with nothing to entertain them at all ( they are both girls so the over zealous male dominated water polo did not appeal) we ended up in bed asleep most nights by 9, as apart from a karaoke bar there is little else to do. There was also lots of people who seemed to be going down with the dreaded winter vomiting bug, which spreads very quickly, especially when people brought their I'll commuting children down to the pool so they did not miss out on topping up their tans, needless to say my eldest daughter ended up ill, when I tried to explain to the reception staff, that they had a vomiting virus problem, they pretended to plead ignorance, being a health care professional I kept my daughter out of action holed up in the room till she was 48 hours clear, it's a shame others did not do this. To give some positives our room was in the ambassador section overlooking the pool, so excellent to get our seats around pool early, but only 3 rooms away from the lobby and the god awful karaoke bar, that woke me up every night and goes on till the early hours. I also got sick and tired of those who liked to walk back to their rooms late at night whooping and shouting, although I find for the vast majority who holiday here that is probably their normal volume for speaking. Our butler concierge, and waiting staff could not have been more helpful and were so friendly, all the staff we met could not do enough for us. The spa is to die for, and I recommend highly the complimentary water treatment which is given when you book a treatment, I possibly had the most relaxing 3 hours I have ever had in my life. The hotel grounds are beautifully kept, and our room was very clean and comfortable. I loved the nespresso coffee machine so much, I have since purchased one on my return home. I would recommend having a photo session on the beach with dreams, yes it is expensive, but worth every penny for the beautiful photos that were taken of my family.We will be returning to Mexico this Christmas and New year coming, but will be looking to book another hotel which is more teenage/older child friendly, and also gives some recognition to the Christmas season on the Rivera Maya. If you are looking for a holiday where you can palm the kids off with a child minder and slope off every night for late meals as a couple only, then this is the hotel for you. If like us holidays are about spending quality time together as a family including dinning together, so wonderful memories can be created then I am sad to say it won't be for you.

Room Tip: Choose the ambassador section if you can.
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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11  Thank Naomi R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Address: Carretera Cancun Tulum Km. 62 | Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#3 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#3 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#17 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#23 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $751 - $1,791 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Grand Velas Riviera Maya 5*
Number of rooms: 493
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grand Velas Riviera Maya is one of the newest resorts to distinguish Riviera Maya as a premier vacation destination. The uniquely Mexican world-class hospitality we provide is "Beyond All Inclusive, Beyond All Compare", and we are proud to be the only family-friendly All Inclusive resort in the Mexican Caribbean to have been rated Five Diamonds by the AAA. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Velas All Suites & Spa Resort, Riviera Maya Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Grand Velas All Suites And Spa Resort, Riviera Maya
Grand Velas Hotel Riviera Maya
Grand Velas Riviera Maya Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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