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“Enjoyable place for a vacation”

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Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa
Ranked #81 of 211 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed March 30, 2013

I recently stayed for eight nights. The resort is rather nice. It is a large resort so be prepared to do a lot of walking. The food is decent. At buffet if you eat what they are cooking fresh at the front you will enjoy it more then what's on the tables. We did not overly care for the Asian al a cart but the rest were good. Disappointing though that they are small restaurants and thus are hard to get reservations at. I found my stay here very enjoyable. A little further from playa than I'd like but still good. Playa is a $20 taxi ride each way and the shuttle service offered by resort is also booked up fast and hard to get on. Only problem I see is this is a large busy resort that needs to offer more shuttles and bigger or more restaurants. I would recommend this resort to a friend.

  • Stayed: March 2013
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2  Thank firemansmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,396 - 4,402 of 8,455 reviews

Reviewed March 30, 2013

I really enjoyed my stay at this resort. At the time they were doing a bit of maintenance work on the building and one of the pools, but that didn't put a damper on our experience. There were a couple things in our room that weren't working, but we just let them know and they came to fix it. We stayed in one of the junior suites with a porch and pool access. The minibar fridge was stocked with drinks for free everyday. I've never been to a buffet before this so I don't really have a frame of comparison, but I thought it was pretty decent. I can't eat gluten, so there were lots of options for me. The restaurants were where the best food was and you have to make reservations in advance. They have something like 7 different restaurants. You have to pay for wifi, but there were some spots that you could go to and stand there and get a signal from the private villas. We didn't go to the beach very much there, but it seemed nice. I don't drink very much, but the drinks I did have were really good and all of it was free. The resort is about a $40USD roundtrip cab ride from town where you can go shopping (if you forgot sunscreen or anything like that that the resort would charge you a lot for, there's a Walmart near by!) The people at the hotel were always so nice and friendly as well!

Room Tip: The resort is really big so you may have to walk a ways or hitch a ride on one of the golf carts, so...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank CherylEnnis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2013

My girlfriend are in our mid-twenties and I traveled to Princess for a 4 night getaway. This was my first time at an all-inclusive resort and we had a great time. We booked the trip very last minute through Orbitz and paid $1,000 including air, which we thought was very reasonable for a 4/5 star resort.

The Property:
Absolutely gorgeous and very well kept. Marble everywhere. We did alot of walking as our room was in between the beach and the main lobby where most of the restaurants are located. The walking didn't bother us as our vacations are typically very active and I think we only used the golf cart shuttle once.

We stayed in a Junior Deluxe Suite. It looked out on the outside of the resort and was very quiet. The room was large and included a jacuzzi hot tub, double vanity, and large balcony. We requested a swim up room upon check in and they said to check back with them in an hour, but we never bothered. The fridge was restocked with beer, water, and soda every day as well.

Beach:
We parked right up front each day. I think the trick is to eat breakfast and get down early as people tend to save spots with their towels or sandals both at the beach and at the pools. We didn't have any problems with this as we were typically at the beach by around 8:00am-8:30am, but did notice a lot of people who came down later in the morning were walking back and forth because they couldn't find a spot.

The beach bar opens around 10:00am and cranks out cold drinks all day (late morning mudslides highly recommended). Was also pleasantly surprised when a server came right to our loungers to take our drink orders (thought this was a Platinum only service). This only happened once, but was a nice touch. The beach BBQ was only open 2 of the 5 days we were there, but I think it's because the weather was dicey. It consisted of nachos, burgers, dogs, and carnitas. If that's not your thing, one of the lunch buffets is only a few minute walk from the beach.

The animation team has beach activities going on all day such as soccer, beach volleyball, horseshoes, bocci, etc.

Vendors will try to sell you jewelry, massages, excursions, or photos with a variety of animals. For the most part you can just say "No, Gracias" or pretend you are sleeping and they will leave you alone. Not a big deal, and the animals (parrot, toucan, monkey) were entertaining to watch.

The rock/coral in the ocean is spotty but you can literally see straight to the bottom and avoid it so unless you already have water shoes, I wouldn't recommend buying a pair.

Food:
Buffets have a large selection with a quality rating of mediocre. We are not picky eaters so we always managed to leave feeling satisfied, but some meals were better than others. They do a pretty good job with breakfast. A cooked to order omelet was my go-to along with fresh fruit.

Make reservations for the restaurants as early as possible as they book up fast. Eunice was very friendly and accommodating. When reservations for a particular restaurant weren't available, she called around to other concierge desks to see if there were any cancellations. We ate at Le Fleur, La Hacienda, and The Fondu restaurant. Le Fleur, which is apparently only available for Deluxe Suite guests and above, was definitely the best. The other two were so so, but good service at all three. We even mixed up the times for one of our reservations and they managed to squeeze us in without a problem.

Quick shout out to Miguel and Javier who bartend at the bar between La Fleur and La Hacienda. They were awesome!

Service:
Everyone we encountered was pleasant and willing to accommodate in any way they could. My Spanish isn't great, but I always started conversations off with a "Buenos dias" or some other spanish greeting and I think it went a long way...even if you then have to explain you can't say anything else and switch to English!

We tipped for any exceptional service we received. A few bucks here and there at the buffets and bars, and a bit more at the restaurants. Did not feel the need to tip if we were passing by a bar to grab a quick drink...

Other:
There were a lot of kids running around! We don't have kids so more times than not we were entertained by them, however, I could imagine it getting annoying if you are on vacation to get away from the youngsters. I guess that's why they have the "Adult Only" option...

Book the free Playa Del Carmen Shuttle at the concierge desk at 8:00am the day before you want to go. There was a line to make reservations and it fills up really fast.

All-inclusive alcohol selection was good as well. You will typically get "well" alcohol unless you ask for something specific, but we were happy they had Captain Morgan, Kahlua, and Jose Cuervo available if requested.

Overall, a wonderful experience. Would consider going back with a group of friends, but would probably try a different resort to change things up if it was just my girlfriend and I.

Room Tip: Junior Suite Deluxe was large and had everything we could have wanted. Liked the double vanity, jac...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Mavery003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2013

We went here for our honeymoon. It is a very large resort so there is lots of walking. We didn't really spend much time on the beach. So I can't say much about that. The food was average. Not great, but I don't really expect greatness from an Mexican All Inclusive Resort.

We stayed in the Adult Only Villas, and it was totally worth it. You share a small pool with the rest of the villa guest, the huts by the pool are awesome and comfortable, and there is towel service right there. Im not really a drinker, so I can't say much about the liquor.

It was a little difficult to get into the resturants. But like i said the food was okay. There were lots of partiers in the main pool, but we didn't even go in there once, we stuck to the private pool.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank albertaroadtrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 27, 2013

we visited friends at this resort, and we had a good time. The food was good enough for buffet food. The pool was fun (but cold). hanging out on the beach was fun for the kids. Rooms were nice with hot tub, but the room always had a mouldy smell. Overall we had a pleasant stay. When we got to reception to leave is when the trauma started. We were not informed that the day pass ends at 6pm and we left at 8pm, so they insisted on charging us double. We had two kids sleeping in strollers, and waited another 45 minutes hoping they would call the original clerk to resolve this mess, but in the end they insisted we pay - and we had no choice because they would not return our identification. My wife and I are still a bit shaken up by this incredulous experience of horrendous customer service. I guess this happened because the place is too large and is run as a massive institution - the human element is missing.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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5  Thank dwenaus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 27, 2013

Spent a week at the Princess with my family and in laws.
All 9 of us really enjoyed our stay.

The bad reviews are unnecessary - the resort really does a great job of making people feel happy and relaxed.
It is true, this is not a 5 star resort, partially because it's a bit older and because the buffet isn't as great as other 5 stars we have been to. But really - there is always something to eat...somewhere!

We stayed in the Platinum section which was wonderful. It is well worth the upgrade simply because booking A La Cartes for 9 people every night would have been annoying if we didn't have our wonderful concierge.

The beach was quite nice, once you get past the vendors - its lovely. The water is warm, the rocks are NOTTT a big deal at all, its amazing. Theres music playing, a bar, a bbq, and beach volleyball all day.
Massages are offered all day as well - bring some cash as it's worth it. We paid $40 for a one hour massage.

The pools are awesome - there are party pools, relaxing pools, family pools, kiddie pools - and even a pool for the older people who want to party but don't want to party with the younger people.

The rooms were quite nice but our toilet leaked, so the housekeeper laid a towel down to soak it up. There was a swampy smell as well, but that goes away when you turn on the air conditioner.

Evenings were loads of fun with live music in the courtyard and shows at the theater. If thsoe aren't for you, you can hang out at the Lobby Bar or in the amazing cabanas found all over. There's also a sportsbar and a disco - so really there is something for everyone.

Overall - a wooooonderful vacation. We wouldn't go back to this resort because we like to try different ones, don't get worried by some of the bad reviews, if you are pretty laid back you willl have an awesome trip!

Room Tip: If you want to be close to the beach - upgrade to Platinum.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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4  Thank zoom93
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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
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6  Thank sasha s
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

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:
#30 Green Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#45 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#47 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#56 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#63 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#69 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range: $168 - $520 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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