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“NOT FOR EVERYONE” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa

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Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa
Ranked #75 of 212 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“NOT FOR EVERYONE”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2013

DO NOT BOOK THIS HOTEL IF: you will be travelling with friend(s) between the ages of 25-35

BOOK THIS HOTEL IF: You're a newly married couple, married with kids, middle aged couple, an older couple, gay couple, couple travelling with kids, several couples travelling as a group or any other kind of couple i may have missed!

Now for my review...

The reason I mention the above is I traveled with my best friend... we didn't want the Cancun incest pool we wanted a well balanced vacation between rest and party. I found that people keep to themselves at this resort but i don't blame them... everyone is a couple and the resort is so big you may chat with someone one night and never see them again.

HOTEL: Huge. Timed the walk from lobby to beach took 10 min at a pretty decent pace (how fast can you really walk in the heat) Grounds are well keep and very clean. Rooms are nice and pleasant to come back to at the end of the day. Plenty of Bars to get a drink; from the lobby to the sports bar to the disco to three different pool bars, and beach bar.

FOOD: I come from a European background and the food i grew up on was/is always very flavourful and rich so I found 80% of the food FINE. Is in it's just fine. I never said WOW this is so good, there were one or two things i spit out because they were bad.The fruit is delicious and the salads i mixed and made with other salads were probably the most flavourful! If you grew up on mash potatoes and bland chicken breast you will find the food amazing.

RESTAURANTS: Went to the Mexican, Fondue, Oriental. None left an impression... Stick to the Buffet at least you have MANY food options.

BEACH: They water is outstanding, clean,blue ,perfect temperature to cool off in, sand soft. It 's a bit crowded when you first enter the beach but if you walk a minute either left or right you will find it much more enjoyable. The "huts' everyone is talking about SHOULD be moved to the back of the beach and the chairs to the front... who designed this place? I didn't come to mexico so I could buy stuff, I came to stare out into the ocean and swim. Only had problems finding chairs one day.

POOLS: too many pools. the "party pool": would not go in if you paid me money, too many drunk people probably peeing in the pool. ALSO THERE IS A GORGEOUS OCEAN... You can find a pool at home..I don't get why people even bother with the pools.

NIGHT ACTIVITIES: great shows! Good entertainment in the evening. Disco is a riot... fun to watch people dance and then when you've had one two many you're the one being "people watched" fun times.

STAFF: unfortunately because the hotel is so big we didn't really get to know any of the employees but they were friendly and hard working and PLEASE tip them! They don't make enough and work 6 days a week, crazy hours (i know because i asked)

OVERALL: This hotel is not for everyone. It was disappointing a bit because in the past i would meet cool people and we would chat for hours and have drinks, here people really kept to their own 'parties" or signification others. This hotel is seriously lacking (and should take advantage of) building a nice restaurant OUTSIDE on the beach or with a beach view. All the RESTAURANTS/ BUFFETS are in doors with no nice views (especially the ones near the lobby, felt like a cafeteria). ATMOSPHERE at this resort is NON EXISTENT.

*Hotel is WAY too far from the main road (40 min walk, don't even bother), very difficult to get around if your not taking a taxi.

Hope I helped with making a decision about whether or not this resort is for you. Happy Travelling! (A TULUM VISIT IS A MUST, after seeing the amazing boutique hotels on the beach down there, there is no place I'd rather travel to again!)

Room Tip: the property consists of two hotels (the Sunset and Riviera) who share the same grounds and are mirr...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank sasha s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2013

We stayed in the platinum building on the Princess side. The room was very spacious, clean, and the staff always came by at night time to see if we needed more towels. There was a jacuzzi in our bathroom, and on the balcony! We never ended up using it, but it is one of those pimp factors. There were also slippers and robes which was a nice bonus.

One thing that would have been nice is to have a radio that we could have hooked our iPod's up to, and maybe a flat screen TV, but that is not a deal breaker (first world problems :s). The WIFI in the platinum building was really good too and I didn't have any issues with it being slow. Check-in for platinum was very fast too, since there was a separate line. They give you really tasty champagne while the concierge is doing their thing to make the waiting a little better.

The grounds were really well kept, the staff were extremely nice, the service was impeccable, and the nightly entertainment was fun as well. The food at the buffets and the a la carte was also very good - there is something for everyone. With the platinum package you can book all your a la cartes when you get there for the entire week, others can only book up to 3 days in advance. The house wines were so-so, they were too sweet and tasted more like juice - but really not a big deal because the champagne was tasty. You can bring your own wine to dinner and they will serve it to you.

There are daily shuttles to and from 5th Avenue in Playa Del Carmen, so you don't have to pay the cab fee. If you can't get on the shuttle, like us, it is only $20USD or $200MXN one way.

There are a lot of pools. You can find the party one right in the middle of the resort, and find more quiet ones the further you walk.

There is entertainment in the main plaza starting at 8pm and a show at 930pm each night. The performers were great dancers and it was fun to watch.

Overall, I am very pleased with my stay and I will definitely stay at another Princess Resort again!

Room Tip: Stay in platinum if you can afford it. The extras are really nice.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Shameenm83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 25, 2013

We stayed Mar. 14- 21. We enjoyed ourselves food was great at all buffets and ala cartes. Staff and service was great. One thing needing some attention we found was that we book on the yukatan side and at check in at desk in riviera side we asked ok weres our room and were just pointed in general direction and told over there. Like I said this place is huge over there doesnt cut it. We traveled with sunwing and sunwing nor resort ever gave a tour of resort. So spent first two days with map trying to find things and walking alot. If we ever go back to this resort we would never stay on adults only side!! There is hardly ever anyone even in pool or on that side and no music or entertainment on that side. I think it should be called the be by yourself side lol. Platinium riviera side close to pools or the villas are great location.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lovethesuntravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
51 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

I think you are either an 'All Inclusive' (AI) resort fan or not. If you are, you will enjoy the variety of restaurants and buffets or snacks on the beach, as well as the non-stop opportunity to eat and drink here and the vast array of pools to sit beside.
For me, I never really felt like I was in Mexico when in the resort so perhaps I'm not suited to AI. The restaurant food and service was a bit hit and miss with some (La Fondue) being great and others very slow even to show you to your table (more than 10mins in most) with a real range of quality in the staff and food. Perhaps I didn't get in to the 'manana' spirit enough! That said, I tried them all and it was good to have the choice. And there is a good range of fat and diet foods in the breakfast and lunch buffets.
A number of people mention how far it is to walk from the reception to the beach. On average, it's around 10+ minutes but after all that food you will be grateful to walk it off! And the grounds are beautifully kept, and spotlessly clean. If you do have heavy bags or weary legs, you can simply take the Platinum bus that runs every 15mins.
I do think the Platinum upgrade was worth the little bit extra. You get all your room service, free wifi and a la carte meals and drinks included, your own small pool area and a roped off area on the beach with bar service to your lounger, and I had 2 jacuzzis in my room - 5121. And all of the Concierge staff in the Platinum Suites lounge were polite, helpful and with good language skills. So I would definitely recommend you opt for this - if nothing else, it guarantees you won't be near the very noisy pool and bar frequented by those getting the most of their All Inclusive alcohol!
I hired a car from Cancun airport and it was a short 45 minute drive on one straight road to the hotel. This then gave me the freedom to get around Playa and the Yucatan Peninsula without relying on the hotel shuttle that needs advance booking or the costly taxi fares.
It was a long but well worth it 2+ hour drive from the hotel to Chitzen Itza back up the main road (around US$25 on tolls), with a return route on a free road to stop off at Coba ruins - definitely do this and hire the bikes to get you around the forest.
Tulum was a 40 minute car ride south from the hotel - again worth it.
And I did my diving with Reef Quest Divers and enjoyed every moment.
The only big gripe here for me was that everyone gets out of bed at 6am, not to see the beautiful sunrises but to put their towels on the sunbeds! And then many people don't show up to use the beds for another 4+ hours. There really ought to be a standard policy that says if you don't return to your lounger within 2 hours (plenty of time for a meal), then the towels are removed and the beds freed up for others who are already on the beach and need them.
If AI is your thing, and a lazy, lie on the beach, stay in the resort, holiday is what you are after, then this is worth the visit.

Room Tip: Ask to be in the Platinum suites and the rooms overlooking the beach. You can't actually see th...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mez65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarnia, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

Just returned from another enjoyable week at Grand Riviera Princess.Stayed from March 14-21.As usual the Mexican hospitality was excellent.All the staff in all capacities all always hard working and friendly.Even though the all staff was great there are a few people I would like to mention that go above and beyond.Ivan the front desk manager was so accommodating and made our stay again a family vacation to remember.Hector at the steakhouse was fantastic,Marvi and Guillermo who both were servers at the pool were so nice and friendly and made sure we were never thirsty !!Food was great at all buffets and Al la Carte's.Shows this year were over the top make sure you see the Rock Train show and the Party time show unbelievable.Remember to tip your servers,maids,etc because they work very hard to make your stay one to remember.Great job again to the Grand Riviera Princess,Westjet Vacations and Bestday.

Room Tip: Try to get a room facing the centre of the resort instead of facing adjacent properties.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mike M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bradford West Gwillimbury, Canada
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

Went as a family, enjoyed every second of this amazing Resort. People were amazing, food was good and the grounds were perfect.
If your going to this resort I suggest that you upgrade to the Platinum side of the resort because it was worth the extra money spent for the private services offered.

Room Tip: Platinum suites and something other that a first floor.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Janine R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kitchener, Ontario
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 23, 2013

We stayed here Feb 8 - Feb 15, 2013. This was the weekend of the snowstorm so since so many flights were cancelled we arrived a day late.
Their are 3 couples that travel together and the travel agent went out of her way to accommodate our request that all 3 rooms are adjoining in the adult section. This request was ignored by the reception area and 2 rooms/suites were adjoining and the other room/suite was in another section. Close by but none the less an area that backed on to another pool area. This was most unfortunate and definitely put a damper on a vacation that was already inconvenienced by bad weather.
This is a very nice resort but considerably larger and more spread out than we would have preferred. However shuttles are available to venture through out the property.
The staff were hospitable and efficient in their duties however some days room cleaning was slow to complete and it wasn't until 3:00 or 4:00 in the afternoon that the room was cleaned.
One problem we had was communicating with the cleaning staff, they didn't understand or speak english very well and sometimes our requests were not fulfilled.
Overall the food in the buffet restaurants was excellent with a nice variety and prepared very well. We only ate once in one of the restaurants, the service was slow, and the ribs were like rubber, undercooked and inedible, so we stayed with the buffets.
Upon leaving this resort we must of stopped and picked up travelers from at least 6 or 8 other resorts. The service at the airport was very slow and the flight was 1 1/2 hours late to depart.
Overall it was our first experience with this area and now sitting back and digesting the entire
trip, I may recommend it to others but I don't feel our party of 3 couples will be too quick to return.

Room Tip: Try and stay in the swim up section, on the main floor. If you are traveling in a group -- good luc...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank grdmiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa

Property: Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa
Address: Prolongacion 5ta Avenida Mza 20 Lote 006, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#29 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#43 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#47 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#53 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#63 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#69 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 674
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa is located on the stunning Riviera Maya, just three kilometers from the famous Playa Del Carmen, in beautiful surrounds, with large and spacious natural parks and the delight of a good tropical weather. Besides our fascinating beach, renowned for the clear water and splendid sea beds, typical of the east end of the Yucatan Peninsula, the Hotel invites you to discover the huge wealth of the archaeological remains of the Maya culture in this area. After crossing the spacious lobby the splendid "Paseo de los Dioses" is reached, which invites the costumers to discover the charm of the hotel. It is a gift to our senses to enjoy all our facilities that can be found to our left and right on the way to the marvelous beach awaiting for everybody at the way of the pleasant stroll.Opened in December 2007, Grand Riviera Princess offers 674 fully equipped rooms with a range of services that give the clients a variety of possibilities to choose from: Junior Suite, Junior Suite Deluxe (some with direct pool access), Platinum Suites and Laguna Villa Suites (ideal for the most romantic honeymoon).A fascinating Spa is offered to all the clients, and the most complete activity program during day and night. A range of services in the varied and international selection of top quality food provide the perfect counterpoint when sharing moments of peace and calm with excellent meals in beautiful and inviting specially decorated surrounds, some of which are by the sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort And Spa
Grand Riviera Princess All Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Grand Riviera Princess Hotel
Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

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