Better late than never! We stayed at the RIU Santa Fe over Thanksgiving 2009. We had a great time and wished we were going back to Cabo this year!
Arrival at the airport: I was most worried about finding our transportation but it wasn't a big deal at all, it was easy. Once you get your luggage keep going past all everything until you get outside. If you prearranged transportation it will be outside...NOT inside not matter what anybody tells you. Even though I told my husband this he insisted we stop at a booth...that wasted a good 10 minutes before we could escape. My advice, keep moving! The people outside are nice and they will help you find the correct driver.
Arrival at resort: The drive down wasn't bad. I'd say 30-40ish minutes. The driver took the road by the ocean so it was nice to see the landscape. (On the way home they took the country route which was neat to see too.) We were handed a dirnk upon arrival, always nice on a hot day. Easy check-in. Had requested building 7 when we booked and recieved a room there no problem. They gave us some information at the lobby desk but to get our room key we had to check in at the reservation desk in building 7.
Room: Room was great - big bed, clean, nice decor, double sink bathroom...slippery tub though so becareful :) The room faced the RIU Palace. Didn't care that we didn't get a great view because we didn't spend a whole lot of time in the room. We had a minor problem upon arrival with the power. They didn't tell us that the main power was a switch on the wall by the bar. It has to be on for all the rest of the power to work. The room was made up everyday. We'd go down to the pool and by the time we got back in the afternoon the room was done. The closet was plenty big enough for a week stay. The safe was very easy to use, never had a problem. The balcony was nice to sit on with a drink.
Mini Bar: This was our only problem the entire stay. It was full upon arrival but didn't get filled again. We should have asked but we had access so so many drinks (alcohol and non-alcohol) that it didn't really matter that much. We always took a couple drinks back to the room with us.
Food: There was turkey on Thanksgiving at the main buffet! Even though we were away from home it was nice to have the traditional dinner :) My husband is a VERY picky eater and even he found something to eat the entire time we were there. At the main buffet "La Baja California" and the lunch buffet "Torote" there was always a lot to choose from and the food was constantly being refilled so there wasn't old crusty food sitting around. We tried 3 of the 4 a la carte restaraunts for dinner (husband doesn't like Asian food). We would make our reservations the day of or before. We didn't really care what time we got a reservation for because we weren't in a hurry or on a schedule. I can't say there was any one restaraunt that we liked better than the other. The food was unique...some we liked some we didn't but we figured let's give it a try. The steak restaurant (which is in the same area as the lunch buffet) and the Mexican restaurant "La Mision" were very beautiful at night. We had great tables at both, very romantic and relaxing.
The grounds: The resort was very well taken care of. People always cleaning and picking up after guests. The walk to the main building from building 7 was not that big of deal at all. The only way it would be a problem is if you had difficulty walking. Otherwise it was nice to take a short little walk. It was a little sad to see that there were at least 4 buildings closed due to the down economy.
The Bars/Alcohol: All bars were always pretty speedy even when there was a crowd. Drinks seemed strong enough...if ever we wanted more alcohol in a drink we just asked for an extra shot. We took Bubba Keg mugs with us to use by the pool...highly recommend getting something like this othewise you'll be going back to the bar A LOT. We also spent time at the Pavilion bars and the sports bar. Both were great. They would get pretty crowded after dinner so if you're looking for some entertainment there were always people to talk to there. Bartenders were always mixing up neat looking shots. They would also mix anything you asked for so if you don't see it on the menu just ask.
Pools: We never had a hard time finding chairs. We'd just leave our stuff (books, suntan lotion, etc.) at our chairs when we went back to the room or ate lunch...nobody ever bothered our stuff. Don't bother bringing towels it'll just take up space in your bag. Just use your towel card or exchange wet towels, easy. We spent most of our time at the beach side pool. It was nice to be able to swim and see the ocean.
Beach: The view was awesome! The only bummer is when too many cruise ships came in and blocked everything. We went down to the water on our last day to get one last look a the arch and a big ship was in the way...talk about disappointing! The water wasn't too rough when we were there but I still preferred the pool. The sand isn't a fine powdery sand it's a little more coarse. Every day vendors would set up just outside the roped off area. If you just say "no thanks" they'll leave you alone. We took walks on the beach several times and weren't bothered by anyone.
Weather: It was plenty hot enough! We would cool off in the pools several times a day. Bring suntan lotion, you'll need it!
Service: All the staff was great and very helpful when needed. They aim to please!
Excursions: We took a sunset cruise which was nice. We booked through our travel desk in the lobby and had no problem. If the tides had been right I would have rather took a trip to Lovers Beach but it wasn't possible. We took a taxi downtown (they got one for us in the lobby) and waited at the designated restaurant for our boat. ]
Pros: Right on the beach. Always easy to find a drink. Very well taken care of resort.
Cons: Mini bar wasn't refilled. The halls got noisy around 3a/4a when the bar crowd got back from the bars.
Overall: We had a great time! We would recommend this resort to people looking to kick back for a while. In retrospect we did wish we would have booked the RIU Palace. At the time of booking we didn't want to pay the extra $ but when we got there we could see the advantages of an older crowd. Since my husband and I aren't the type to stay up drinking all night we might have preferred a more low key resort. According to the RIU Palace reviews I read the crowd was older and a bit more stuffy. When we vacation we like to stick to ourselves so this wouldn't have been an issue. Plus we heard they had room service at the Palace...my husband loves room service. If we ever go back we might pony up the extra $ to try a new resort.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located in the southern Baja California peninsula, 4.5 Km/2.8 Miles from Cabo San Lucas * Opened winter 2007/8 * 1-story main building and 3-story and 4-story annexes * On the beachfront * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 3.5 Km/2.2 Miles from downtown Cabo San Lucas * 40 km/25 miles from the airport * 500 m/1650 ft from a bus stop ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas
- Riu Santa Fe Los Cabos
- Riu Sante Fe
- Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos