I am not sure I can say anything that hasn’t already been said on TA about this resort, but I will try to throw one or two new things in the mix. The number of reviews that come in on a daily basis says enough about this place all on its own!
Our trip to RPDC was the first week of February 2011 for my 40th birthday and was for a total of 8 days. We had a group of 12 people including couples and singles as well as a range from my 60 year old mom to a 30 year old. This hotel caters to all adult ages and singles / couples alike, so whatever your demographic, you will love this resort.
We used Pleasant Holidays, which included hotel transfers via Best Day travel, and the transfers went very smooth. The location of this hotel is the best of any other hotel and we walked up and down 5th Avenue at least once if not twice a day every day. We arrived at the hotel around 6pm to be greeted by 2 very nice concierges who checked us in and welcomed us with cool cloths and champagne. All of our rooms were checked-in ahead of time using the online system and each of the designated room choices were correct. We had room 397 and thought it was a perfect room choice! The resort, as stated before, is impeccable and the cleanest place I have ever seen in all of my travels. The staff is like no other – always acknowledging you with a smile or a hand over their heart. Everywhere you look, at all times, someone was cleaning or painting or doing something to make the resort so dynamic.
Everyone in our group was very generous with their tipping and we all brought about $200 per person for tipping purposes. The tips went very far and the workers were all very grateful and sometimes surprised. We didn’t see a lot of other people tipping, but everyone here works their butt off and deserves a little extra!
Food: The first night we went to Spice for the buffet dinner and it was just OK. The time to go to Spice is for the buffet breakfast, which is fantastic with its omelette bar, fruits and varied stations of tasty treats. We also ate here for lunch a couple of times and it was fine for an afternoon feast. We had Asiana for dinner one night and everyone in the group loved the food as well as all of the yummy sake! The bartender there was great and definitely memorable in a good way. We ate at Maria Marie 2 times because it was so scrumptious (including my birthday evening) and they were very accommodating of the cake my friends snuck in without my knowledge! We only ate at El Mediterraneo for lunch and we were mostly pleased. A few times during the day for lunch we jumped out of our beach chairs and headed into Pelicanos for lunch, but don’t forget your cover up because you can not sit in there without shirt / bottoms / shoes. The food was good and we tried several different items over those few visits. We also went across the street several times for dinner to take advantage of the Mexican and Italian food. Everyone had good remarks for the Mexican restaurant but opinions were varied on the Italian place based on food quality as well as service. The food in the 24-hour lounge is not that fantastic during the day, however, at 1AM after a night of drinking, it is the most tasty thing you have ever experienced! The chicken fingers were a big hit as was the cheese & crackers. We used this lounge late at night almost every night for snacks and a last drink (which you make yourself). We used room service early one morning before one of the off-site activities and it was very good.
Rooms / On site activities: The rooms are roomy and have a huge Jacuzzi tub as well as an in room mini bar consisting of drinks & snacks. We only used housekeeping a couple of times and when we did they left awesome towel art and did a wonderful job of cleaning the room. The rest of the time we had the do not disturb sign up and it was always respected. At one point our A/C broke in our room and literally 2 minutes later they were there to fix it and did so very quickly. Several of us in the group would do morning pilates in the gym and all of us were very happy with that pilates experience as well as the instructors. A couple of people in the group did say that some of the other machines in the gym were broken (treadmills, etc). Regina and Charlie who are always at the pool for the daily activities were the BEST and I cannot say enough good things about them. Sometimes it was hard to get people involved in the activities but they always managed to do it with their energy and fun personalities. Also – the waitresses around the pool are super and start bringing trays of drinks around at 9AM! Even that early, we couldn’t say no to the Mango Tangos. A few of the people in our group also used the spa on-site and all came back with raving reviews.
Off-Site activities: THE JUNGLE PLACE! If you are an animal lover, go here….it was the highlight of the trip for everyone in our group who went along. It is a spider monkey sanctuary and you can see my review of it here on TA. Xplor was our 2nd favorite activity consisting of ziplines, underground rivers and amphibious vehicles. We spent the whole day here and booked it though the Best Day Travel desk at the resort (by the lobby). Everyone had a good time and was happy with the activity. Xcaret ended up with a mixed opinion by the group, but the one thing everyone agreed on was the food alone at the buffet was worth the trip! This is a great place for kids or people interested in wildlife / animals / plants / etc. We also booked this at the Best Day Travel desk on-site at RPDC. We used Sabai Spa for massages a few times and I wrote a separate review for them on TA that you can check out.
The only negatives we have are the pool aka ice water. We even saw a brave guy in the pool who was wearing a knit beanie for warmth. There is only 1 hot tub and it is full to the brim with people huddled up in their groups by 4PM. I am not sure why the other big, round hot tub looking area next to the actual hot tub has not been turned into another one. There is no food poolside, which was very disappointing and I think is also a great idea to keep the drunkenness to an acceptable level. Lastly, the beach has way too few of the plastic white tables. I saw people almost get in a fight over the tables because there are under half as many as there should be. As people have stated, you have to get up early to reserve chairs around the pool and we were always down there by 8 to get loungers for our group so we never had a problem.
If you have any question in your mind of this is the right hotel for you, IT IS! The location, the Mango Tangos, the employees, the beautiful beach, the limitless food, Regina & Charlie, etc, etc…..Stay here and you will also be writing a shining review upon your return!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Along the powdery white sands of the Caribbean, The Royal welcomes guests to a world of all-inclusive luxuries exclusively for adults. Situated on the Riviera Maya just steps from Playa del Carmen's famous Fifth Avenue, the AAA Four-Diamond resort boasts all-suite accommodations with private balconies and spectacular views, plus special options such as swim-up suites and beachfront walkouts. From beach butlers to romance concierges, the attentive staff provides genuine hospitality at every turn as guests enjoy the luxurious spa, exquisite cuisine, natural beauty, and many other delights of The Royal. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Royal Playa Del Carmen Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Royal Porto Real
- Royal Playa De Carmen
- The Royal Playa Del Carmen Riviera Maya, Mexico