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“If there was a six star hotel, this would be the one!”

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Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa
Ranked #8 of 21 Hotels in Akumal
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed March 9, 2009

While not wanting to sound like a tour company, this is one of the nicest resorts we have stayed at. When booking the vacation, we thought that two weeks might be too long. Clearly, it was not. We stayed in 7033 at the Royal Suites section of this very large resort. The added cost (minimal) for superior, adults only, rooms and ammenities is well worth the investment. The junior suites are spacious, but be prepared to use your hot tub with only relative privacy as they are situated outside. If you opt for a junior suite, try to get one on the third (top) floor. A la carte restaurants are superb -- try El Jardin, Bamboo, Ribs and More. The bars in the main buildings are quiet and relaxing. The pools-- particularly the one designated for the Royal guests -- are clean with no shortage of deck chairs and towels. The beach is a little disappointing, having been damaged by hurricanes a few years ago. But there are nice walking paths along the ocean and a fantastic salt water pool. Without exception, staff members were friendly, good-natured and helpful. Take running shoes as you can do a lot of walking at the resort (with some stair bridges). If you don't enjoy walking, the entire resort is well-served by small trains and golf carts. For those addicted to computers (like me), there are two work stations in the Royal Suites reception area. There is nothing chintzy about this resort -- room fridge is well-stocked with best brands and the a la carte dining is as good as you can imagine -- lobster once a week, steak, ribs, shrimp, etc. Daytime temperatures were approx. 28 - 30 degrees celsius. Evenings tended to be cooler and breezy so a light jacket is recommended. Hotel developers have preserved nature and there is an abudance of creatures, including aguanas, monkeys, etc. There's a neat 15-minute boat trip that spans the entire resort. We didn't participate in recreation, but there is mini-golf and other outdoor activities. So impressed by the resort, we only ventured beyond the complex gates on one occasion. For US $20, you can take a short 15-minute taxi ride to Playa del Carman for shopping along so-called "5th Avenue". This was worthwhile. Travel between the resort and Cancun Airport was efficient by bus -- the trip takes about an hour each way along a modern four-lane highway. Cancun Airport is a busy place. Don't lose your immigration exit permit as this must be surrendered on departure. And don't be unnnecesarily duped into time share deals that are promoted at the airport, Playa, and elsewhere (but not at the resort). So all in all, we were most impressed by the Palladium -- the strengths: beauty, comfort, food, pools, and service; the weaknesses: none noted. Our best vacation in years.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank FussyVacationers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DtorAdjunto, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded January 24, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your friendly review. We are very pleased to have made your stay a special and memorable one!
It makes us happy to know that you had a wonderful vacation and we were able to live up your expectations! Thank you for sharing.
Your home away from home awaits you next time you are in Mexico, and show all the newest renovation and progress

Best regards,
Grand Palladium Team

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,478 - 1,484 of 2,888 reviews

Reviewed March 5, 2009

Don't stay here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Stayed at the White Sands the last week of feb 2009. Rooms are nice but food is terrible. Have stayed at Dreams resorts (good food) average rooms. You can't just drive somewhere else to eat at this location so I would suggest avoiding this hotel. Beach water activities staff are rude and not helpful. Most staff do not speak english well. Front desk staff are rude. They act like they could care less.
1) Al a carte Food is terrible! Buffet food was average.
Brazilian - terrible, couldn't even finish. Meat is poor quality. Got very sick after eating here.
Japanese - Worst ever. If you ever been to benihana this isn't it. Chef burned rice and everything tasted terrible. Appetizers were cold and bad.
Bamboo (chinese) - Food not very good. Prawns are salad sized shrimp. This resort really tries to cut cost with poor quality food.
El dorado (steak) - Probably the best at the resort but not that great. Steak is about 1/4 in thick and most likely select grade. You can get much better steaks at costco than this. Again supposed 5 star resort is serving 2 star food.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank snowsux
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2009

My partner and I stayed at this hotel for one week at the end of February 2009. We were extremely well looked after by our Thompson holiday rep at the hotel. We made the mistake of not realising you had to pay an extra fee to book seats together, and on the way to Mexico we were sat seperately. The premier service did not seem worth the extra money and people were moaning about the price they had paid. I spoke to people who had been offered these seats on checking in at the airport for a fraction of the full price, so it may be worth risking it in future. The hotel itself was very impressive and I would recommend it for couples old and young, and families. Its facilities were brilliant, and we particularly made use of and enjoyed the spa, gym and adult pool. I actually considered the spa facilities much better than some that I have visited in the UK and everything was free to the guests, with the obvious exception of treatments. The gym was spacious and had plenty of good equipment to use. The range of pools and sunbathing areas was great, with plenty of space and sunbeds available. We were told by the rep that the hotel was full to capacity but the hotel never seemed that busy which was nice. This may have been due to the fact that the hotel formed part of a larger complex, and guests have access to all other hotels and facilities. Although the complex was huge in size, getting around it was fine, either by foot or using the small train which travelled regularly around the resort. Staff were very friendly, however often worked at Mexican pace, which was sometimes frustrating! We stayed in a standard room and were lucky in the fact we had a nice pool view. It was very spacious and clean, and the double jacuzzi bath in the bathroom was a very nice touch! The beach was a short walk from our room and was beautiful, though we were only able to sunbath on there once due to high winds. The all inclusive was on the whole very good. The extensive buffet breakfast was excellent and the buffet lunch was also good. The a la carte evening food was slightly dissapointing. Although the brouchure said guests could only eat in the al la carte restaurants a limited number of times during their stay, we were pleased to be informed on arrival by our rep that this was not the case. Guests are able to eat in these restaurants as many times as they liked. The choice of resturant was great, however the food was often served cool and service was often slow. When we went to the resturants at about 8-8.30pm we were nearly always told that we would have to wait 1hr for a table, which was annoying at times. The all inclusive drinks were fab - my partner loved the Corona on tap & I loved the Champers and Smirnoff Vodka. I have never been all-in were the drinks have been decent.
We both thoroughly enjoyed our time at White Sands and out of the other hotels in the resort felt we had picked the best one (with the exception of the Royal Suites which looked amazing!).

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank katBrat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DtorAdjunto, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded January 24, 2017


Dear Guest,

First of all, we want to thank you for choosing us as you holiday provider. Thank you also for sharing your excellent experience at the Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa.

We are delighted to know that we were able to exceed your expectations. We are beyond thrilled when our guests have a fantastic experience with us.
Thank you again. We are so looking forward to welcoming you back again in the future to show you all the improvements and renovations in the last years

Best regards,
Grand Palladium Team

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Reviewed March 1, 2009

My husband and I stayed at the White Sands Palladium for one week. It was our first time visiting Mexico and we had a great time! The complex is very large and provided lots of variety of places to sun and eat. We had 5 al carte restaurant reservations and went to the Brazalian restaurant (the men really liked this as was a wide variety of meats cooked on swords - a fun dining experience), the Italian restaurant (wonderful prawns...), the Bamboo (went there twice, loved it ...Asian inspired), the El Dorado steak house (good - New York steak the best) and the Mexican (the appetizer nachos were wonderful as was the creme brule for dessert, but the main course was so-so). We ate almost every day at the open air buffet La Laguna ... offered grilled burgers and hot dogs, pizza, fish and a wide assortment of salads and other dishes. Fun for kids is the ice cream machine and sundae toppings (we didn't have kids with us, but I enjoyed it). The place is super clean - no complaints there. We tried from several bars, margaritas, some were very good and some were not. Fun drinks are the sombraro and banana mama. We were in building 53, a bit far from the beach, but quite close to the lobby, main buffet, 4 of the al a carte restaurants and the main/adult pools. The room (5302) was huge but was really best for a couple - the tub was out in the open and the bathroom only had a glass door and the shower stall opened up to the room - so not a lot of privacy. Liked the idea of the adult pool (over 18), we spent a couple afternoons there ... beach bar and bathrooms very handy. The salt water pool area a bit farther to get to, is well worth it though. The pool water right from ocean and very warm, and the lounge chairs have a comfortable cushion (and yes the beach bar and bathrooms are right there). There is a wonderful Spa and we spent a few hours one rainy afternoon using the sauna, steam room, and several other free features. We didn't get a chance to go snorkling or use the catamaran as we waited to the last day and the winds too high (red flags up on the beach means no water sports - too dangerous). There is a gift shop and jewellery shop on site, where I picked up a few silver items... there is also a market set up a couple of nights with local vendors. There's tons to do ... kayak, paddle boat, catamaran and snorkling all free ... salsa lessons, spanish lessons, mini-golf, tennis and so much more. The only complaint we had was that Transat Vacations uses Skyservice now and those planes are just too darn small. My husband at 6ft tall, his knees were pressed hard against the seat in front for 4 hours. Next time we will try another airline for sure. All in all an excellent trip and wonderful resort.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled with friends
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9  Thank Lillymaytoronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DtorAdjunto, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded January 24, 2017


Dear Guest

Awesome! Sounds like you had a splendid trip here at Grand Palladium Resort & Spa. We have succeeded providing a memorable vacation.
Thank you for your feedback. This information has let us know during the years to know what we are excelling in and what we need to work on and we can proudly show a new development with many renovated facilities and a generally resort upgrade.
We appreciate your kind words on our resort amenities. Our staff is always there to assist and make your experience even greater. It’s our hope to be able to exceed your expectations once more.
We feel honored that you would return and can’t wait to see you on your next vacation!

Best regards,
Grand Palladium Team

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Reviewed March 1, 2009

We enjoyed our stay at the resort, but have some suggestions for improvement:

1. Our room was lovely, but due to our neighbor’s constant smoking, our room smelled horrible. We could not use our balcony or open the windows due to his smoke entering our room. Smoke also entered via the adjoining door. You need to designate rooms and entire buildings as NON-SMOKING, including the balconies, and enforce these rules. Other Riviera Maya resorts are doing this with great results.
2. On-site shuttle busses, trams and trains need to have clearly posted NON-SMOKING signs. There needs to be NON-SMOKING areas in the lobbies, bars, pool areas and areas where people are waiting to enter restaurants.
3. All restaurants were understaffed. Many buffet restaurant workers did not seem motivated, did not keep tables clean, and needed to be asked multiple times for water or silverware. Supervisors were not directing employee’s activities. The specialty restaurants workers worked very hard and were friendly, but were very understaffed. It was very difficult to get reservations for the specialty restaurants even though there were many vacant tables.
4. Specialty restaurants did not enforce the dress code, allowed entry to “spring break” young people who were dressed inappropriately, were drunk, loud and obnoxious. It ruined the fun for many people.
5. The airport to hotel bus was supposed to be private transportation for our group, but 3 additional riders destined for another resort were squashed into our van. They had extra luggage and lots of large boxes for a wedding reception. We had boxes and luggage on our laps.

PS: only 25% occupancy!!

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank JimMich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2009

Except for Air Transat - poor service and we were shoved in like sardines. The stewardesses ignored us totally. Then we wanted a beer from the bar and they told us they were saving it for the next flight out in the morning (I guess we did not pay enough).
The resort was out of this world. Absolutely gorgeous and so clean. Everything was better than we ever expected. All 4 resort were absolutely beautiful. The food was superb and lots of choice.
The staff were all so nice - we had fun with Rueben - bartender & Mayra - barmaid in the lobby of the Whitesands (we had lots of fun with both of these staff). I would certainly recommend it to anyone!

Can't wait to go back.

I think I will try another airline though - WestJet would be my preference.

Liz
Alberta Canada


Our room # 58 was perfect - right next to the beach. Got to love that!!

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank dizzylizzie57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DtorAdjunto, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded January 24, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you for your nice feedback regarding your stay at the Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa

We are delighted to note that you had a pleasant experience on our lovely resort years ago. It’s always a pleasure when our guests have a wonderful time with us.

We appreciate your kind tone and look very forward to welcoming you back again in the near future to show you the newest development and progress.

Best regards,
Grand Palladium Team

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2009

I cannot believe some of these reviews!!We cannot say anything bad about the Grand Palladium Resort.We stayed in the White Sands and thought the whole resort was wonderful.It was BIG and alot of walking and yes we were usually disoriented but again we had lots of time to walk & explore. It was 80 mins from airport,long busride.
Night time entertainment was great. 2 theaters to pick from of shows. Early show for kids which we really enjoyed too.
Pools were cold but big & plentiful.
Food was good.Lots of selection.We enjoyed steak at the Ribs N more and the Steakhouse but found the steakhouse not to be quite as good. Italian ala carte was good as well.Buffets had tons of selection to suit everyone's tastes. Their food is not like our's so what did people expect?
Hotel room was very spacious.Our Jr suite had couch & table.Only thing for families or anyone sharing this style of room was the shower stall opened up into the room.Bathroom/toilet was inside fogged glass but not total privacy door to floor.There was a luxurious whirlpool tub in middle of room but again if your a family you won't be using it.
Most staff at bars & reception ,restaurant hosts spoke english well but staff at buffets very limited if at all.
Beach was nice. Could take sand shoes for some parts but not absolutly necessary.
Did have trouble finding beach chair by 10:30 but plenty at pools.
Lots of sports & activities to do if you want.
Spa had a couple of hot tubs which were maybe not so clean.
There is a train/golf carts to take you around and it does take a few days to figure out your way around.
We would highly recommend spending the day at xcaret. Beautiful grounds, snorkling down a lagoon and the animals and birds are amazing!
This was our 1st trip to an all inclusive south so we have nothing to compare it to but I honestly don't know how it could have improved much. We would recommend to anyone.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank hairgal72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DtorAdjunto, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded January 24, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your friendly review. We are very pleased to have made your stay a special and memorable one!
It makes us happy to know that you had a wonderful vacation and we were able to live up your expectations! Thank you for sharing.
Your home away from home awaits you next time you are in Mexico, and show all the newest renovation and progress

Best regards,
Grand Palladium Team

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa

Address: Carretera Chetumal-Puerto Juarez Km, 256-100 | Municipio Solidaridad, Akumal 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Akumal
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Akumal
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Akumal
#7 Spa Hotel in Akumal
#8 Luxury Hotel in Akumal
#12 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#12 Family Hotel in Akumal
Price Range: $253 - $702 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 264
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa is located on a spectacular, private Caribbean beach-front complex that boasts of 800 meters of white, fine sand and turquoise blue waters. Guests of the Grand Palladium White Sand are invited to use the facilities provided by the adjoining Grand Palladium Colonial Resort & Spa, the Grand Palladium Kantenah Resort & Spa, and the Grand Palladium Riviera Resort & Spa (excluding the Royal Suite facilities). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Palladium White Sand Hotel Akumal
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort And Spa
Palladium White Sands
Grand Palladium White Sands Resort
Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa Riviera Maya/Akumal, Mexico

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