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“Hard to find a fault.”

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Hotel Riu Palace Mexico
Ranked #29 of 209 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Hard to find a fault.”
Reviewed August 18, 2013

We stayed at the Palace Mexico 2-13 August, two families of four with children aged 9 & 12.

Check in was quick and efficient. The hotel was impeccably clean throughout. The quality of the 24hr all inclusive package was excellent; the food, drinks, service and facilities.

The accommodation was exactly as depicted on the website and did not disappoint. Housekeeping and Turn Down service were first class.

We ate in all restaurants except the Mexican, (only because we ran out of time). The choice and quality of the food in the buffet (breakfast & dinner), the beach BBQ, the lunchtime buffet and the à la carte restaurants exceeded expectations. On reflection, I can't think of anything negative to say. The bar staff were always ready to provide drinks and cocktails as required.

The hotel location on the beach was great and the sea beautiful.

The Manager came to our dinner table one evening to ask if everything in our stay was as we wanted it to be, to which we replied "Yes", and we were assured that any need would be met.

Without exception, all the staff we encountered; Reception, Housekeeping, Bar, Waiting, Animation, Pool, Groundsmen were nothing other than friendly, polite and efficient. They are all a credit to the business.

We would not hesitate to return to this hotel and would thoroughly recommend it.

Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
12 Thank popiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Santa Cruz, Bolivia
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed August 17, 2013

I'm spending my honeymoon at the Riu Palace Mexico. I did quite a bit of research and comparison before booking this hotel and was really looking forward a 5-star all-inclusive service.
My husband and I are in our 30's and have traveled a bit in the Caribbean, US and Latin America.
Following are my personal observations of the hotel.

*The hotel itself is beautiful, although not the Caribbean feel I was expecting, it's modern chic decor is nice. The rooms are brand new, they are built in high-end materials, and are very comfortable. They are all junior suites with a seating area and balconies.
*The beach is gorgeous, and not extremely crowded even at this time of year that is high season.
*Pools are very nice, plenty of chairs and a swim up bar.
*The food and drinks are very decent. Haven't had a chance to try all restaurants yet, but so far the steak house has been the best.
*Location is great, staying in Playacar is really the best you can do. You get the beautiful beaches, the quiet and exclusive feel of the resorts but still very close to town. I do not like to stay in the middle of no where as we love to get out and explore outside of the hotels when we travel.

*We had a couple of hiccups with our room right on arrival. The closet clothes hanging rod was broken and the tub drain would not close so we were unable to take a bath. We reported the issues and they were fixed, although it took a couple of calls and days for the tub issue to be fixed.
*We had requested their complimentary honeymoon package upon booking, and we didn't get any. Didn't feel like complaining anymore and just let it go.
*The reservation only restaurants are virtually impossible to book. Reservations can only be made between 8-10am on the same day, and 3 out of 4 days we tried at 8:25 and 8:30am all spots were gone. So yes, if you want to dine in these restaurants they will force you to rise very early on your vacation.... Go figure.
The two times we were able to get in, we realized they only take 20 people at each restaurant per sitting. In this size if hotel, the vast majority of guests will never get a reservation.
*Schedules are very strict and in my humble opinion way too early for most. Pool and beaches close at 8pm (I was so looking forward to a night pool dip!), latest dinner seating is at 8:30, and the dinner buffet closes at 10pm. We are late diners when we're in vacation, so we had a super hard time with these schedules, one night we made it to the buffet at 9:50 thinking they stop taking people in at 10, but we had an unpleasant surprise when they closed the restaurant doors and picked up the food at 9:55 sharp regardless of who was still there.
*Entertainment is not existent, besides a kind of cheesy very American show from 9-10pm on the main stage. Bar closes at midnight. If you want anything after that there's only the 25-hour lounge with self-serve snacks and drinks. Room service is also available 24-hours but is very limited to a couple of types of sandwiches.
*There's no bar service on the beach... I was really expecting waitstaff available there at a 5-star resort
*On more than one occasion public bathrooms were dirty (not flushed)... Yuck!
*Their wi-fi service is AWFUL! Don't take me wrong, but I did specifically look for wifi availability in the resort, to be able to call our kids via Skype at home, and also have access to net radio, movies, etc. We have NO wifi signal in our room, not even in the balcony. No wifi on the pool or beach, wifi is only available in the lobby and some restaurants. When we complained, their lame explanation is that wifi cannot reach the rooms because of the concrete walls. Funny thing I'd that we had string signals of the wifi of at least 2 surrounding hotels. Even in the lobby the signal was very intermittent. I haven never stayed at a hotel where there was no wifi access in the rooms.
*No pay-per-view and very limited tv/movie options.

Overall nice hotel, but I would personally not come back and would try a different hotel when we return, which we definitely will as we loved the area. I expected much more for the price and level of this resort, and the little details just didn't cut it for me. We would also like a more lively place with a bit more nightly entertainment, and a decent Internet for god sakes! LOL!

Room Tip: We preferred top floors closest to the pool/beach
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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9 Thank Vale0079
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2013

My new husband and I have decided that this hotel overtakes Disneyland as the happiest place on earth! And we have agreed that if we ever win the lottery we're just buying a room here for the rest of our days! Seriously amazing from start to finish!

We stayed for 10 days at the end of July 2013. We were on honeymoon but we were also travelling with our 3 year old son. We wanted a hotel which was luxurious and romantic which allowed kids but didn't have a crazy family atmosphere. This hotel was perfect, lots of facilities for children and the staff were lovely to him, but not too noisy or overrun with children. We travelled on Thomson's long haul service from the UK which we were very pleased with.

On arrival at the hotel we were greeted with the beautiful 'Welcome Drink' and given information about the facilities, restaurants etc. Bell boys took our cases to our room for us. Our room was on the second floor, at the pool end, on the left hand side (as you're looking at the hotel from the front). We found this the perfect location. We didn't pay for the courtyard view but we weren't in the room enough for it to make a difference. We thought the room was amazing. It was very spacious, immaculately clean, great facilities, and we had one of the huge beds instead of two doubles pushed together. We used the sofa bed for our son for the first couple of nights and a camp bed after that (he had a little accident in the sofa bed and they gave us a camp bed when they came in to change it). He was very happy in both of those. We didn't have any bathroom privacy issues as our son is still young and so he sometimes showers with us etc anyway. For older families or friends you'd probably need one of the rooms with the curtain around the bath, as the shower door is quite easy to see through and there isn't really a private area for getting dressed. But of course there's always the balcony for people to sit while others get ready. Mini bar in the room was great, especially with a thirsty little one. The air con is great. We kept ours up full the entire time as that what was most comfortable for us. We didn't have any problems with dampness apart from one day when it was off across the whole hotel for maintenance while we were at the pool and when we came back in the floor was soaking and very slippy. But someone came and mopped it all up for us. So I guess the aircon is the key to controlling the humidity.

Oh my, the food! It really is out of this world! The choice is unbelievable, even the fussiest eater will have lots of choice - trust me, I was there with two of them! Everything is cooked to perfection, I can't count the amount of times we bit into something and said "Oh my god!" They must have international chefs as the pasta is the best I have ever tasted (and I come from an Italian family!), the Chinese food was better than any Chinese restaurant I have ever eaten in, etc etc. We kept going back to all our favourites as well as trying new things, and we didn't feel fed up with the food once. We ate in 4 of the 5 speciality restaurants - Italian, Fusion, Mexican and Steakhouse. We loved the first 3, Steakhouse wasn't amazing but still good. If you go to the Fusion restaurant (Krystal) get the beef with the sweet potato and vegetables - seriously the best thing I have ever eaten! Beef unbelievably tender and the veg tasted amazing. Can't stop thinking about this meal! We went to Lounge 24 and the coffee bar for snacks a few times aswell, again everything was great. So handy to have Lounge 24 if you're peckish or heading out on an excursion.

Drinks were great - my husband fell in love with Passion Dreams, with a few Margaritias here and there! Banana Mama at the pool bar is amazing. The cocktails are very icy but trust me you'll be glad for it. We found them better blended in the lobby bar, and bit more chunky at the pool bar but I'm pretty sure that's purposeful as even the waiters that worked in the lobby bar also made them chunkier at the pool bar. They're not too weak but not too strong - you can drink them all day without worrying about getting too drunk! The white wine was beautiful and it certainly got us tipsy! The milkshakes and iced coffees from the coffee bar were a big hit too.

The service is another thing about this hotel which is out of this world. Everyone greets you with a smile and a hola - from cleaners and gardeners to waiters and hosts. Nothing is too much trouble for any of the staff at this hotel. Our favourite waiter at breakfast even started putting coffee pots on 'our' table at breakfast so nobody else would take it before we got there! The staff work unbelievably long hours in the searing heat and still manage to be so friendly. We tipped, not massively, but we tipped. We spent in the region of £200 on tips over 10 days, for three meals a day plus lots and lots of drinks! The staff were all so lovely and welcoming to our son too, lots remembered his name and chatted away to him for ages. And gave him lemonade in a shot glass when he asked for tequila! Special mentions to the waiters and hosts who made our stay extra special - Gullian, Francisco, Joaquin, Marnie and Daniel. We had no problems with housekeeping staff starting too early, as mentioned in some other reviews, maybe it was our position in the hotel. The housekeeper was usually in while we were at breakfast or just after, around 9.30am. They take plenty of time cleaning your room and do a really thorough job.

The entertainment team are really excellent. My favourite part of the day was 10am at the pool when they play 'Good Morning' over the sound system and come around greeting everyone, and then sing and dance to the I Want to Go to Riu song! Sounds cheesy but it isn't its just a lovely upbeat start to the day! We took part in a few of the activities and really enjoyed them. The staff aren't pushy to make you join in, they just let you know when everything is starting, but they don't disturb people that are sleeping or reading. The atmosphere by the pool is amazing all day long. The shows are great - we went every night and we were gutted when the programme came out for the week we were leaving as we wanted to see all the new ones too! Casino night is really fantastic as is the beach party. Casino night is every Saturday and beach party is every Tuesday. I did the free scuba diving lesson too which was excellent. The entertainment staff work really long hours - they start at 10am and work until about 11.30pm, and also take turns at taking guests out to the various clubs in Playa del Carmen. In some cases they were working 10am- 5am for 3 or 4 days in a row. And they only get one day off a week. But again you would never know it as they are so cheery and friendly all the time.

Pool & Beach
Both absolutely stunning! The set up of the pools is great - 1 larger pool, 1 sports pool, 1 smaller pool, the swim up bar pool, and 4 shallow infinity pools. We thought it was really good as it meant there was lots of lounger space and it didn't feel overcrowded. We wanted 3 loungers together - 2 in the sun, 1 in the shade, and we always got it no matter what time we went down it. Plenty of parasols and tables. The beach is so stunning. Very clean, beautiful turquoise water and white sand. Plenty of palm trees provide the shade but there are plenty of sunny spots too. Again no lounger trouble at all. Beach barbeque and drinks waiters at the beach and pool are great too. There's security on the beach which made us feel extra safe, although we didn't see any incidents at all. Lifeguards too and the flag warning system.

Decor and upkeep
We really liked the decor. It adds to the luxurious feel without being brash or over the top. We visited Riu Palace Riviera Maya for a look around. It still has the traditional Mexican style like this hotel had before the refurbishment. However it didn't feel anywhere near as luxurious, and it smelled really bad! We much preferred the modern style of Riu Palace Mexico, it is much more high-end. The place is immaculate. There are gardeners in the grounds every day, making sure everything is perfect. One day we saw them on gigantic ladders removing any palms on the palm trees that had the slightest hint of brown! All the common areas are perfect too. They fumigate at least twice a day - some people might not notice as they do it during breakfast and lunch (and maybe dinner too) but if you go into the halls or stairwells at the right time you'll see a fly/wasp/mosquito graveyard! We all hate insects so we were really grateful for this. They must do the same with the pool and outdoor areas too as we saw one wasp the entire time we were there and that was it (and believe me, we usually notice every tiny little fly!). It really is five star plus.

All in all, I just can't describe how amazing this hotel is. We haven't stopped talking about it since we got back. My husband is a serial nitpicker and nobody can believe that he's found somewhere where he doesn't have anything to moan about! No holiday will ever compare to Riu Palace Mexico!

Room Tip: We had a 2nd floor room, at the pool end and found it to be perfect. Halfway between the pool and th...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
17 Thank CaraAndChris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North West
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2013 via mobile

I agree with all the comments about the friendly staff, delicious meals and beautiful gardens. We travelled 28 July until 11 Aug with our daughters and partners. We were made to feel very welcome when we checked in. We were in rooms 1108, 1109 and 1110 which didn't have a great view ( overlooked the back with no view) but we got a good nights sleep because it was quiet and no noise from the entertainment outside. we enjoyed the drinks and asked for Smirnoff vodka and Gordon's gin and we got them. The only thing we did not like was there wasn't much gas in the tonic so we brought a can down from our fridge and that solved the problem. The entertainment was a bit hit and miss but we enjoyed the dance troop and the magician (. Was a bit cheesy). We also really enjoyed the Casino Evening. The negatives I mentioned were very, very slippy floor tiles when it had rained. We ended up taking our flip flips off and walking on the grass as it was hazardous. also the fumes from the jet skies was very strong when sat on the beach. Overall I would definitely recommend this Hotel. It really is worthy of 6 stars

Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
9 Thank MurphysNorthWest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aylesford, England, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 13, 2013

I recently went to Mexico with my family for a holiday.
We stayed at the Riu Palace Mexico hotel and had an amazing stay.
The hotel was 2nd to none - the staff were very friendly and bent over backwards to help with anything and everything they could.
The food and facilities were very good and plenty of choice.
The beach was very clean and a lovely setting with the 4 pools inc swim up bar.
There are plenty of excursions available but on the other hand the Riu Palace Mexico is ideal for just relaxing and enjoying what's at the resort itself.
I fully recommend a holiday to Mexico at this hotel - simply a fantastic time!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
10 Thank Hayley C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed August 9, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at the RPM late July-early August as a party of 8 and had an amazing time. The hotel is beautiful and all the staff work incredibly hard to keep it spotless. There have been a lot of comments about the rooms but we loved them, we were travelling with our 14 year old daughter and privacy was not an issue, we just planned who would shower etc.

The beach is stunning and it was lovely to have drinks brought to your sunbed, the waiters do a great job and don't seem to stop working. Every member of staff we spoke to was lovely, they all took time to talk to you and seemed really genuine. Even the ground staff gave you a cheerful greeting. The staff don't expect tips but were so grateful to receive them and given the high quality of service you recieve they deserve to be rewarded.

We mainly ate in the Buffet restaraunt and had loads of choice. We did eat in the Krystal, Steakhouse and Mexican but our daughter and her friend prefered the variety on offer in the main restaraunt so we stuck to that. There have been comments on the wine but we found all of it to be good, especially the sparkling rose. We were looked after particularly well by Eliel who ensured our glasses were always topped up.

The only slight negative is the evening entertainment, however we went out to a couple of the other hotels if we wanted a more lively evening. We also got a cab to Playa Del Carmen a few times and that is well worth a visit. There are shops near the hotel but the souvenirs are significantly cheaper on 5th Avenue and a cab is only $7 plus you get a great night out. Some comments have been made about getting hassle to go into shops but it wasn't bad, a smile and no thanks is enough, it is nothing like the hassle you get in places like Turkey and Egypt.

All in all a fabulous holiday which we all agreed was the best we ever had. The hotel is gorgeous but it is made even better by the staff. Can't wait to go back

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
11 Thank Ella-g-Bella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Asten, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed August 8, 2013

We staid here for 9 amazing days, Is't one of the best hotels i ever been to! Everything is so well organized. I really don't understand the few people that are not pleased withe this hotel, everything you need for a good vacation is at the Riu Palace. The food is delicious and there is a lot of choice. The beach is amazing! The rooms are the best, i can go on forever.....
just book this hotel you won't regret it!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7 Thank MichelleDas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Mexico

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Mexico
Address: Avenida Xaman-Ha, Manzana 3, Lote 4 | Condominio Playacar, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
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:
#15 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#21 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#24 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#24 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#28 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#32 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Mexico 4*
Number of rooms: 434
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on the Yucatan peninsula, 3 km / 1.9 Miles from Playa del Carmen * Within the Playacar resort, along with the Riu Palace Riviera Maya, Riu Yucatan, Riu Playacar and the ClubHotel Riu Tequila hotels * 2-storey building * Surrounded by 20,000 m2 / 24,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens * Located on the beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 200 m / 650 feet from Mexican Street * 55 km / 34 miles from Cancun Int. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Mexico Hotel
Riu Palace Mexico Playa Del Carmen
Riu Palace Playa Del Carmen
Riu Palace Mayan Riviera
Riu Playa Del Carmen
Mexico Palace Riu
Riu Mexico
Rui Palace Mexico
Hotel Riu Palace Mexico Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen

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