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TRS Yucatan Hotel
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Reviewed February 22, 2013

My husband and I (30 somethings) stayed for 8 days in February 2013. We've been to several other AI resorts, including some adults-only, so we feel we have enough experience to know the good, bad and ugly when we see it. We had a fantastic vacation and this review will focus solely on our experience at this resort (not flights or transfer or other non-resort related items). Regardless of some problems we encountered, we are experienced travelers and don't let disappointments about accommodations or service stop us from having the time of our lives.

We arrived at 3pm on a Saturday and were welcomed with a cold, wet, refreshing wash cloth and a cold, wet, refreshing drink! A great start! Check in was efficient and our room was just being finished up for our arrival. By the time we got all our check-in papers and the bell boys loaded up our luggage, the room was ready. We had previously emailed the hotel to request a second floor, pool-view room. We never heard back from that email. Our request was not met. Unfortunately, this was a sign of poor service/responses to come. We were given a ground floor room with a jungle view. It wasn't a big deal to us so we chose not to inquire about our request. Totally fine.

The bell boys gave us a ride right to our room and escorted us in with our bags. Very efficient! The room is nice - we had a jr suite, the basic room for the Royal side. The air conditioning was working well and the room was nice and cool. We were given a sheet to fill out for the time we wanted our room cleaned daily, nightly turn down service time, mini bar selections and pillow selections. We completed it and promptly turned it back in. We also made dinner reservations for the entire week. Everything was going smoothly.

We ate dinner at El Jardin. Service was slow and confusing. The food was just ok. Not a big deal, as this was somewhat expected after reading reviews here. We chose El Jardin for the first night just out of convenience. It's located right at the Royal Suites and no reservations are needed. By the time we were ready to turn in for the night, we were bothered by the light coming in from the balcony (automatically turns off at 11) and the light outside our room shining in through the shower window. We closed the blinds tightly which fixed one issue and put a towel over the shower door to lessen the other issue. Annoying, but tolerable. When we asked, nothing else could be done about these items. If you like a dark room like we do, this could be an issue for you.

The next day, we enjoyed the beach and the pools (both the main White Sands/Riviera pool and the Royal pool). The beach is perfect, in our opinion. A section of rock & coral bottom for snorkeling, a sections with nice white soft sand for swimming & feeding fish (they are everywhere and will follow you if you have food - angel fish and needle fish, I think), and a nice long stretch for walking/running. Beach chairs were plentiful although the amount of shade you had depended on how early you arrived to claim chairs. One end of the beach is nothing but rocks, suitable for picture-taking but not much more. The other end of the beach goes on for miles, it seems, and is good for walking/exploring. The Royal beach is furthest from the Royal rooms. It's a long walk or a nice golf cart ride away. We like to walk for the most part so not a huge deal. But if you have mobility issues or don't like to walk, this could be an issue for you.

Speaking of golf carts, we looked forward to this Royal service due to the large size of the resort, and it was partly why we booked Royal. But by day 3, we had yet to have a golf cart show up when we wanted one. We asked, and waited, several times. To no avail. They just never showed up. Others were also frustrated by this lack of highly touted service. We spoke to the bell boys and front desk. They apologized and said it would get better. It didn't. Also a disappointment, by day 3, our list of requests the hotel asked us to make still had not been honored (cleaning time, turn down time, pillows, etc). We spoke to our butler twice and asked to see a manager after it did not improve. It took 4 requests before a manager actually spoke to us (there was an excuse the first 3 times as to why they weren't available supposedly). We were frustrated to have paid for the Royal section when the Royal perks weren't much above and beyond the other 4 sections. We finally got the hotel's attention and by day 4, things finally fell into place. As an apology, our room was decorated special for Valentine's Day, including the hot tub being ready for us after dinner, champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. A nice touch, for sure; what we really wanted was the advertised services that we paid extra money for from the get-go. Point being, speak up if you aren't getting the accommodations or service you paid for. You may have to be persistent before they listen, unfortunately.

OK, so now that we got that lined out, everything else was pretty smooth. Drinks were good, food was as good or better than other AI's, pools were enjoyable, etc. Sometimes service was slow or you had to ask twice for something. I think this may be due to understaffing, although a bell boy said 2000 people work here. It's a huge place, for sure!

A la carte restaurants we tried…

Bamboo (Asian) - food was disappointing, service was good.

Punta Emilia (Seafood on the beach) - food wasn't as good as other restaurants, service was ok.

Mare Nostrum (Mediterranean) - excellent food, good service. One of our favorites!

La Adelita (Mexican) - fantastic food, good service. Another favorite!

Sumtuori (Japanese hibachi) - ok food, good service.

Ribs & More - decent ribs, although not quite like we're used to, slow service.

We had the (included) lobster a few times. Twice it was dry and overcooked; once it was perfect. Overall, the meats at most meals were overcooked and dry. For breakfast, we had fresh made omelets most mornings (yum!) and pastries. Lunch was either the large main buffet or the smaller pool buffet. We also had ice cream, snack mix and wraps by the Royal pool a few times. Premium liquor at the Royal was nice although we are not big drinkers.

We had a couples massage at the spa. The spa is very nice and the massage was great! Not a bad price, either.

Lots of critters around the resort: lizards, raccoons, snakes, big rodents, a long-tailed coon-looking animal, cats, and of course sand fleas & mosquitoes (bring bug spray or wipes!).

Overall, this was a great AI and we would consider staying here again. Though I do wonder if they are understaffed or overworked.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank MustLoveDogz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 18, 2013

My husband and I just returned from a week at The Grand Palladium, Royal (adults only) in Riviera Maya Feb 3-9, 2013. THIS PLACE IS ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC!!!! We travelled with a group of 12 adults. We stayed at this resort in 2006, but stayed at the White Sands (which we all loved). We also stayed at the GP in Punta Cana in 2008. This place FAR surpassed our expectations in every way. We stayed in room 7108, and our group was situated either in our blg. or in one of the two blgs. right next to ours. The room is HUGE, and very clean. The beds are super comfortable, and there is a pillow menu available (we were fine with the ones provided). The fridge is fully stocked with water, pop, beer. Also there are full- sized bottles of vodka, rum, bourbon, and tequila in the room. There is a LARGE hot tub located on each terrace, with privacy curtains along the balcony (white robes/slippers too!). My husband and I ordered champagne to our room almost every night! Let me tell you, I have never felt so pampered! The staff is EXTREMELY accommodating!!! Plus, being a guest of the Royal has its perks! Whenever we needed a ride to or from any place in the resort, we just spoke to a staff member, and private transportation was there within minutes! Also, we could order lobster from any of the restaurants, anytime! Our butler was available in the entrance to our blg. to make dinner reservations at the ala cart restaurants, or to assist us with any other requests we had. We went to the beach bbq on Wed night, which was delicious, and we ate at the Italian Restaurant (Portofino), as well as El Jardin. All of the food was good. No complaints. We ate breakfast at El Jardin almost every day, since it was close by to our rooms. A few of the people travelling with us ordered breakfast to their rooms and were pleased with this service. One couple in our group went to Tulum and took public transportation to get there. This worked out well for them and was only $3-4 each way. Our group also went to Akumal , which had a beautiful beach. Some in our group snorkeled, and took advantage of the brief presentation about sea turtles, as well as the $20 deal for gear and guided snorkeling. They guaranteed seeing sea turtles or your money back and also took you to a more private area to snorkel. Our group also went to Playa Del Carmen for an evening, and had a BLAST shopping, people-watching, and having dinner. Most of our days were spent at the Royal pool, the White Sands Pool, or the salt-water pool. Bar service at all of these places is excellent (especially Louis at the Royal Pool Bar! He always had a smile and was sooo friendly!). Although we never go back to the same place twice, we made an exception for the GP in the Mayan. This proved to be the BEST DECISION EVER, especially choosing the Royal. We can’t even count the number of people we spoke to who were repeat guests, and based on this trip, our group may be among them again!

Room Tip: We were in room 7108 which had a lovely view of the lagoon facing the bungalows
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank Maureen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

Just got back from a 2 week stay at this lovely resort. It was a pleasure to stay in the Adults only section and be pampered by the staff. The rooms were very comfortable and we enjoyed the jacuzzi tub on our balcony even though it took 45 minutes to fill it. The entire resort is very clean and great care is taken to maintain it to a high standard. While the property is huge the Royal Suites is kind of secluded, away from the hustle and bustle. The pool was great but it was a long way to the beach area. You could take a golf cart, if you did not wish to walk though. We particularly enjoyed our daily sojourns to the lobby bar patio area where we were entertained and spoiled by both Jose Louis and OH NO Filiberto.
Both the food and the service at Le Jardin restaurant were inconsistent. They seemed to be understaffed but everyone did their best. Food highlights were the Coconut Shrimp and the Lamb Chops. They also had a very interesting Mexican menu prepared by a special guest chef. Traditional Mayan ingredients with a modern twist.
The spa was another highlight of our stay, along with the 2 rounds of golf we played at the Mayan Riviera course. Get an early tee time if you don't want to melt in the mid-day sun.
Overall we had a very relaxing and enjoyable stay and met some great people. We hope to be back next year.

Room Tip: If you have mobility issues book a lower floor room. Walking up 3 flights of stairs several times a day can be challenging.
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank joebftsplk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

This is our 3rd stay at The Royal Suites. Even since last year they made some improvements - redecorated the junior suites, a big improvement in the music and show entertainment, more advertisement of their special events such as The White Party, ice cream and more snacks at the Royal Pool. By the way, The White Party is a blast - basically a disco on the beach but starting at a reasonable time. There is a full screen showing music videos and the staff are very interactive to get the crowd going. At 10:30 or so they stop for a Fire Show which was good but a little cheesy for my taste. The beach is one of the highlights with a good coral-free swimming area further down and GREAT snorkelling right off the resort. We say all the usual fish plus rays, eels, tuna-like huge fish and more.

The resort is very large but easy to get around, especially with the golf carts. Make sure you explore all the hidden treasures at the 4 resorts including Las Rocas Seawater Pool and the Royal Beach area. The rooms and common areas were always clean.

Most of the staff are very friendly and helpful whether you are tipping or not. However the service at both the a la cartes and especially El Jardin are painfully slow at time. It is hit and miss. The food is very good, for the most part, once you get it. They seem to be hustling but I don't know if it is a matter of low staffing...? Our favourites were French and Italian Night at El Jardin, El Dorado (my husband had the best Filet of his life), the Brazilian and Japanese. It's hard to book the Show Table at the Japanese but honestly for me, it was not worth the hassle. It was kind of mickey mouse compared to what we have in Canada. I didn't enjoy Bamboo (Chinese) at all. We had some lovely soups and desserts in all of the a la cartes.

One of the highlights is the Lobby Bar at the Royal Suites and Filberto the bartender. They serve top-shelf brands and can make 100's of different drinks. Filiberto and all the Royal bartenders provided very friendly and attentive service. Their coffees were to die for!

Our friends experienced a lot of bites but had their room fumigated and it seemed to fix the issue. Even if you got 1 or 2 mosquitos in your room at night, you were in trouble.

Overall, a very enjoyable stay. It would be perfect if the food service was more consistent and a little faster as this is considered a 5 star resort.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank LoriB42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 10, 2013

This resort is beautiful! We stayed for 11 days and had a great time. The Royal Suites is a beautiful place. The Royal beach alone is worth the upgrade. I hope Palladium appreciates Fernanda as the valuable employee she is. She is a joy!
The drivers of the Royal Suites golf carts are fantastic! I've had recent knee surgery, so I was limping and one night,while I was walking back to our room, he just said " señora, you look tired, hop on" - I had no choice! They took good care of me :)
Then there was Philberto, in the Royal bar - fantastic!
My only disappointment was, the El Jardin restaurant. The food in there the first night, was so bad, we couldn't even eat it! The host was rude and not welcoming at all. We only ate some breakfasts there after that.
The other al a Carte restaurants were fine.
Loved our Mayan Suite room. Enjoyed the fish and birds every morning from our deck! And our outdoor shower :)
We would definitely return.

  • Stayed: February 2013
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4  Thank Canadiansenora
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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