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“OK for a short stay”
Review of Hotel Riu Lupita

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Hotel Riu Lupita
Ranked #80 of 214 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Kelowna, Canada
Level Contributor
35 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“OK for a short stay”
Reviewed March 4, 2014

I have been to many All inclusive resorts, Riu is still my favourite. They really have the best buffets! We only stayed here for 2 days, not sure we would have enjoyed a whole week, This was the quietest AI I have ever seen, quite a nice change, liked the Adult quiet pool, and the beach club was wonderful. Playacar is the best beach on the Riviera Maya (in my opinion). The shuttle is reliable and well used. I wonder if most guests just use this hotel as a place to sleep and do a lot of day trips, as there really was not many people by the pool. Most visitors were from European countries, we were amazed at how many people smoked (it reminded us of the 70's)
Biggest Cons: the rooms are very old, the Air conditioner very loud, old plumbing, you can hear your neighbor shower or flush the toilet. On the positive side, we did not notice any musty smells, and the room was very clean.
Bring mosquito repellant.
Bottom line, you get what you pay for, this was fine for the price, but if you want a nice room stay at the RIU Palace

Room Tip: some rooms don't have a floor above them, might be quieter if you can live without the air condi...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank carcar47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
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  • German first
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English first
Taunton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
41 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed March 2, 2014

It's normally against the grain for us to keep going back to the same place, but over the last 8 years we've gone through the same process. "How about the Dominican Republic? Or Cuba? or Jamaica? Or Kenya?" You know the routine.Then, when it comes down to it, we think "where do we want to go for great weather, excellent service, great food, and a completely relaxed holiday?" The answer is almost always the same. The Riu Lupita. Which is why we've been 5 times in 8 years and spent a total of 9 weeks there!!

It has been 2 years since our last visit, but we were recognised immediately by Rudolpho, Artemio and Blanca at the bar and Nuri in the restaurant (who gave us a big hug and kiss).

Since our last visit they have now installed a pool at the beach, and are using the beach club as another themed restaurant in the evening. Both great additions. The rooms have had a makeover too, and ours was freshly decorated and spruced up.

As always at the Lupita the overall service is excellent, from the young lads that move the sun loungers around to the waiters and waitresses in the restaurant. Nothing is ever too much trouble.

The food choice was as wide as ever, with lots of local Mexican food available, as well as the usual burgers and pizzas for those less adventurous.

The biggest problems at the Lupita are always the bad-mannered guests. This year there has been a real influx of Russians, who in general are rude, loud and pushy. There are always odd Brits, Canadians and others who show a distinct lack of respect for the service they are getting and can't resist treating staff like dirt. One notably bad example this year was a drunken Canadian guy who told Blanca he was going to call her Whitey from now on!! What a moron!!

Anyway, we had a fabulous time, and will undoubtedly be back at some point in the future.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Phil-Somerset
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 27, 2014

Overall this is a really nice spot. Only draw back is that it is not on the beach, but for us that was A-OK. The shuttle takes you right there and is easy from the Hotel to the beach access point by the Riu Palace Hotel. Staff were very respectful and helpful. We got a room that was away from the center of the action so it was quiet and relaxing. We got a Family Room which was nice (bunk beds for the kids). There is a beach front restaurant that was well looked after. We were actually asked if we wanted to upgrade to the Riu Palace, but we declined as we felt where we were was OK for us.

Room Tip: If you want a quiet room suggest by the tennis court facing the golf course or in the 2000 or 3000 a...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank FastEddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Olds, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2014

When I booked with my travel agent she was hesitant to book this resort for me, as she knows the resorts that I usually stay at. I typically stay in the larger resorts (Bahia's, Barceló's) When we arrived I was hesitant as well. However after the first day there my opinion changed drastically. There was a 10 minutes shuttle to the beach, when we arrived at the beach we found that we had our own private beach, swimming pool , patio bar and bar..the shuttle also made a stop at 5th Ave in Playa on our way to the beach. We had 1 buffet restaurant at the resort, 1 ala carte at the resort and 1 more at the beach. All 3 were outstanding. For 1 week stay we were given 3 ala cartes. We had no problems with our room at all. (would suggest bringing your own facecloth as there were a few days that we didn't get new ones) I did hear others complain about the A/C being loud, we were lucky as ours was fine. Rooms were extremely clean.
The entertainment staff were hands down the BEST I have ever seen, as well as the bartenders, and all other staff . With speaking with some of the staff and finding out that they work 13 hr days 6 days a week, really made me think about the cushy 8-9 hr days that I put in only 5 days a week. They sacrifice there family time to be at our beacon call. AND they ALWAYS had a smile on there face! I do agree with WolfieB1, there were a lot of rude Europeans/Russians there...shockingly rude actually. But I do believe that the resort workers were aware of there behaviour as I know the "extra attention" was def. not geared towards them. As always there were a lot of smokers, it would be nice if they had a designated smoking area. I will def. go back to this resort without a second thought :) Thanks for a wonderful holiday!

Room Tip: We were on the 3rd floor, no A/C noise at all.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Shona W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beaconsfield
Level Contributor
32 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2014

Booked at the Lupita because the price was right, we knew it was not on the beach and that we would have access to other RIU hotels on the playacar beach which was fantastic.

The shuttle shows up ever 30 min and you can spend the entire day at other RIU hotels using their pools, buffets and bars.

Playacar is, to me, the safest area in mexico within walking distance to playa del carmen, food was delicious somewhat repetitive but always found ample to eat.

Free wifi in the lobby.

Playa del carmen is always my location of choice!

Would definitely go back.

Room Tip: Try to ask for upper level rooms
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sunnysandy8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
62 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2014

- 4 star quality for the resort / 5 star for the staff
- ZERO stars for approx. 20% of the fellow (Russian) tourists, which is the reason why we will NOT return to the RIU Lupita nor any other RIU Hotels which have more than 5% Russian guests.


Positive:
- Management and staff were great/ very helpful and friendly
- A/C unit very noisy- was replaced by new one on second day
- Quality of food and drinks outstanding!
- Rooms renovated, clean and comfortable

Negative:
- bus journey to beach (10 minutes) not a real issue, however it would be great if the hotel could negotiate a food path/access rights with the Playacar golf club, making it possible to walk to the beach in 5-10 minutes
- RUSSIAN TOURISTS: impolite in general, stone-faced, pushy, no table manners, very impolite to staff, extremely homophobic and non-courteous.
The RIU Hotel Group would be very well advised to limit the amount of Russian tourists to their resorts as otherwise they will lose the custom of people from civilised and free countries, where people know how to behave in another part of the world. Alternatively the RIU Group as well as the Russian Travel Tour Operators should make an effort to educate their clients and teach them how to queue / stay in a line when approaching the buffet, waiting for a bus, smile and treat others with respect. Only then will people from different ethical backgrounds be able to enjoy their well-earned holidays.
- we (a mature gay couple) had told our waitress that it was the 7th anniversary of our Civil Partnership on the 16th of February- much to our surprise she had reserved a special table for us at dinner, decorated with rose-pebbles, a red heart and a card from her= how very sweet, it brought tears to our eyes. The reaction from Russian fellow-tourists? They actually LAUGHED AT US, pulled faces and couldn’t believe their eyes. What a bunch of un-educated and heartless people!! We have never felt so hurt in our lives and felt like asking for a microphone and telling these people how to behave in a country such as Mexico where people are friendly and courteous!

Room Tip: ask for a room on the top floor in buildings near the gold-course or buildings number 27, 26, 25 or...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank WolfieB1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2014

We did a family reunion at Riu Lupita resort with a family of nine people: six adults, three kids (6, 7 and 8 yrs). Arrival on Dec 30th. Departure Jan 11, 2014. Paid less than $2k CAD p.p. for 12 days resort including flight from West-Canada via our regular travel agent (I do not buy travel online). This was my first all-inclusive resort experience so I can not compare with other resorts in this neighbourhood, but I enjoyed it very much, despite some initial troubles with our rooms and tropical rains... The weather was average to good during our stay.

We didn't mind being located away from the beach since our stay was a mixture of excursions, beaches, visiting towns, etc.

PROS:
At dinner time you usually get welcomed with a drink. The food at the resort is good and the variety changes from day-to-day (e.g. Japanese dinner night (soba, sushi etc), Mexican night, Flambé pancake night, etc). I loved the fresh salsa, different seafood and the coconut ice-cream. We didn't eat at the Mexican restaurant within the resort just because we didn't get around to it. Not many people seem to eat there during dinner time from what I have seen.

There are three pools. On the first day of 2014 we hang out with our kids at the small pool behind the childcare-center. There were no other guests there and after a while the child-care person (Edna) came by to give our kids some water balloons and chatted a bit with us on her day off... She was very friendly. There are two other pools: one that’s quiet and the general one, which is the biggest, closer to the bar. Most people hang out there. Though, be aware of the smokers! There is not really a non-smoke area in the bar.

There is also a spa and small club. We only used the spa on our last day; it was good. In case you are staying around during the day then the animation team will keep you entertained with a chat, gymnastics, a 60-minute cooking course in the main restaurant (during rain time) or a game of bocce, darts, table tennis et cetera.

95% of the staff is very friendly and helpful. From manager to cleaner, they do everything possible to make you feel at home. They are all hospitable and most of them speak a small bit of English. English is spoken quite well at the reception. They did a good job of facilitating our party with three rooms in the same building and if there was anything we didn't like we just had to let them know and they would fix it or move us to another room.

Just before New Year's day the resort was fully booked!! For the people from the Eurasia time-zone they organized a champagne toast in front of the restaurant earlier in the afternoon, which was a really neat welcome. New Year's dinner itself was amazing and the fruit and ice-sculptures were impressive. On that day there was no shortage of lobster, caviar and champagne; they pulled out all the stops!

There is entertainment each day (by the Riu Lupita animation team) and in the evening there are local artists who perform on stage around 21:00 hrs (including a Michael Jackson impersonator, which was fun). They most likely rotate these performers in the RIU resorts in the area throughout the week.

The mid-aged 50-seater shuttle bus (just manual windows, no airco) to the beach was great since it stopped at two spots during each half hour: town/5th street (8 min) and the beach (12 min). The beach has its own pool and restaurant and lots of beds to relax on, either under palm trees or the hot sun. The main street in town (5th ave) has lots of stores where shop owners do their best to sell you their goods. There is also a Walmart and 7-Eleven believe it or not!

CONS:
- Internet is available in the lobby of the resort and only 90 minutes per 24 hours per device. Something essential in the era of mobile communications is lacking here. This needs to be improved upon but did not affect our stay. It’s just annoying.
- Reed roofs on some of the facilities (bar, club) looked a bit shabby in the rain and need replacement. I am sure that will be taken care of soon.
- There are really nice updated rooms. We hopped from one to the other. Ask for a better room in the higher numbers (2000's) if you are not happy. They will move your stuff there. Unfortunately our first room had a leaking water tap so we complained at the reception (in person) and we got moved to a different room within a few minutes. In the end we moved three times total because of a problem that emerged for others in our party. Though, I have yet to visit a hotel in on our planet without any problems. The service is great and the staff in the resort made the difference. This is a 3,5 star resort.

It's hard to think this is a developing country when you are in a resort like this! At the end of our stay I tipped most of the people working there because they don't make a whole lot. Don't forget the people behind the scenes: chefs, gardeners etc.

It's weird to come home and have to make my own jam sandwich for lunch.

TIP:
If you are in Mexico only for a few days then do Xcaret for a day (it's 'Mexicoland'). For anyone who is within a group (8+) visiting longer I recommend arranging a taxi-bus at the reception of the resort. They will get you an English speaking driver with air-conditioned mini-bus who will happily assist you for 5-6 hours (approx US$200 total), visiting 2 or 3 places, an efficient way of seeing more for less. Just to give an example: we did the Tulum Ruins (free for kids), Playa Paraíso and Gran Cenote in one day.

~ Have a fun trip everyone!

Room Tip: Ask for a room that has recently been renovated.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank Bluecrab2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Lupita

Property: Hotel Riu Lupita
Address: Avda. Xaman-Ha, Manzana 20, Lote 1, Condominio Playacar | Playa del Carmen - Quintana Roo, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#45 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#50 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#81 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Lupita 3.5*
Number of rooms: 300
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on the Yucatan peninsula, 2 km / 1.2 Miles from Playa del Carmen * Main building and 1 and 3-story bungalows * Surrounded by 25,000 m2 / 29,900 sq. Yards of lush gardens * 3.5 Km / 2.1 Miles from the beach (complimentary transportation) * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 2.5 Km / 1.5 Miles from various shops * 50 km / 31 miles from Cancun Intl. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Lupita Resort
Riu Lupita Mayan Riviera
Riu Lupita Mexico
Hotel Riu Lupita Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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