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Reviewed April 14, 2010

Great Vibe!

That is what my better half announced after just a couple of hours at the RDC. He was right - the staff, grounds, pools, bars and restaurants all provided an instant “feel good” vibe that continued for the week. We had such a great experience, including stalking someone we thought was Tiger Woods hiding from the paparazzi at Pool 6 bar one evening! It could happen!

We stayed in Building 5 and were very pleased – great pool and excellent staff at the buffet and the bar. It was not a long walk at all to other buildings or to the ocean. We have been to large resorts in Cuba where you were breathing dust by the time you reached a bar or restaurant. We were able to use the Front Desk at Building 4 to handily do all of our “business” – banking, internet, restaurant bookings, Nolitours bookings and check out. There is an ABM kitty-corner from the RDC by the timeshare shark, and at the first shop down the street there is a money-exchange with better conversion rates than at the RDC.

The room was basic as noted, but we had read the reviews so there were no surprises. The buffets were fine and we often buffet-hopped, having a little bit at both of them and usually whatever was being cooked fresh. We also bar-hopped as there are so many little bars spread out over the resort, each with it’s own following of revellers.

One of the best features of this resort is its location. It is easy to immerse yourself into the local way of life – walking about Bucerias or catching the bus to PV or Wal-Mart (“Just get out and cross the freeway”, we were told!). It was an easy to walk to the Bucerias markets. We wished we had rented bikes from the resort earlier in the week instead of near the end of our stay. We rode further into Bucerias where we ran across many of the hotspots that we had been looking for – Twisted Rose, Bucerias Gardens, Yo Yo Mo’s, etc. We did manage to cab it in that evening to Yo Yo Mo’s to watch the Flames lose.

Your vacation is what you make it – “Live great days; your days are your life in miniature”.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Oscarz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 14, 2010

We travelled with a large wedding group, service was fantastic, the food was good, the location was very nice. The rooms were nice, but the beds are VERY firm, but you are only there to sleep. The entire resort was very well kept, VERY clean, we felt as though we could walk around with out any shoes on and we didn't have to worry. I would recommed that you include in your budget a substantial amount for tipping, they deserve it!

  • Stayed: April 2010
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3  Thank magnantwk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 11, 2010

The Royal Decameron *exceeded* our expectations.

There are some solid pros and very few cons - but overall - feel good about your choice - this is a fantastic resort.

PROS:

1) The resort is immaculate - there are people everywhere cleaning, gardening, tending to your needs.

2) The staff is the most friendly we have ever encountered (and we have been at many resorts in several countries).

3) The food was great - although I would say - use the buffet at the “Tropicale “ (the “Flamingo” was a notch or two lower - smaller and fewer choices).

4) The Rodizio has burgers, fries, and excellent chips and guacamole every day from 11 am to 5 pm - we had a mid day snack every day there (check the map for the location of these restaurants).

5) The walk to Bucerias is FUN (and perfectly safe in am or at night).

Walk out to the front of the resort past the guard shack and turn immediately down the street there to the left.

The BEST deals are in Bucerias - MUCH cheaper than Puerto Vallarta (and cheaper than the beach market to the left of the resort as you face the beach).

If you get tired of resort food, there are some fun restaurants along this road too.

6) The a la carte restaurants are pretty good. The Italian and the Thai (and Rodizio) were great.

People weren't as thrilled with the others, so we skipped them (and we happened to LOVE the buffets - especially breakfast and dinner - lunch was a little more boring - but the ICE CREAM WAS DELICIOUS = every lunch - especially the vanilla!!!!)

7) Beach was great - always wonderful bodysurfing and boogie board waves - do it!!!

You can walk forever north or south on the beach for miles. ALL the people were kind and nice - I was with my daughter and wife - and none of us EVER felt threatened in any way.

8) TAKE THE CATAMARAN ride!!!!!!! Almost no one did this - it is free and they send a sailor (we had "Angel " a wonderful young man) take us. Only two riders at a time and the ride is 20-30 minutes. The view is GORGEOUS!!!

9) USE THE FREE BIKES!!! WE used them a lot - you can ride the street to Bucerias which is really fun!!! You do have to carry them over a bridge (up ten feet and down ten feet - but we were all able to do this easily).

10) This sounds weird, but there are LOTS of bathrooms around the resort and LOTS of places to get drinks. We really appreciated this convenience.

11) Beach Volleyball - my favorite thing to do on vacation - this usually started at 11 AM - there is a big board by the Flamingo pool - check it to see what is going on.

12) There are also daily free tennis lessons, water volleyball, water aerobics, dancing etc.

13) Rooms: the rooms are older - but we felt good because they were spotlessly clean and cleaned. When we asked for extra pillows or towels they ladies were very happy to give them to us.

14) The resort is huge - walk around the whole thing the first day so you know what is available/

CONS:

1) Hard beds. Geez. I want to give the resort a flawless review because they try soooooo hard to make you feel important and special - they really do. But the beds were amazingly hard. The rooms were fine except for this. I heard some rooms have "feather mattress pads" - that would have been great.

2) Computers. There are two banks of two computers for the whole resort. It is $5/hour US to use them and since it was Easter week - they were hard to get to.

What I did was walk across the street to the internet cafe (directly across the street - 50 feet away from the resort).

I would buy a bottled water , get the free WI-FI code, and use my iphone which was LOTS faster than the hotel computers and no waiting, no worrying of running out of time, or someone breathing down your neck wanting to use your computer.

3) THE AIRPORT IN PUERT VALLRTA IS THE MOST EXPENSIVE EVER - one slice of pizza at Sbarro’s was $8 (and water $3 a bottle). Others who went here before brought lunch items with them. This is more expensive than New York City (ouch)!!

OTHER SUGGESTIONS:

1) If you need a pharmacy item (we needed several things like allergy pills, cortisone cream for sunburn, and extra sunblock).

Do NOT use the pharmacy in Bucerias or from the Gift Shop at the resort = VERY expensive.

Instead, walk to the end of the block from the highway (about 4 city blocks). There is a huge pharmacy on the right hand side which is VERY much cheaper than anywhere else...that pharmacy is designed for Mexicans, not for "rich tourists."

2) DEFINITELY bring a large cup - the drink cups they use are tiny. If you drink lots of coffee like I do in the morning - you will want a bigger coffee cup.

And you NEED a bigger cup for water and other drinks to properly hydrate all day.

They do give you a large water bottle each day - which we had the bar refill for us to walk around with (but a big plastic bottle takes ice cubes which is very nice in the heat!!!!)

3) Most of the beach has three rows of chairs. If you place towels there by 8 AM you can get in the front row. If you are there by 9AM you can get the second row. There were always chairs available - even during Easter week - but it will be the third row.

One suggestion - see if people in the front row are wearing wristbands from Decameran. MANY people using the front row seats were locals or people who stayed at cheaper (non ocean front) hotels. There was lone famil with about 8 people using 8 chairs in the front row. I did not confront them, but we did mention it to the front office staff - and the next day, security monitored this.

4) Have a great time. You will LOVE the Decameron. EVERYONE we talked to did. They felt they got an incredible deal (as did we) - and all of us were amazed people ever complained about this place.

We travel a lot - and I want you to know - this is a fantastic deal - beautiful surroundings, a great resort, and a staff that makes you feel special.

We are very happy.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled with family
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13  Thank traveldoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 10, 2010

this past march my wife and i had the pleasure of spending an incredible week here.this was our first visit to this part of MEXICO .we were pleasantly surprised with the flamboyant colors of the hotel complex,the beautiful grounds the helpful staff .we also loved the fact that it was nice and fairly quiet even with the number of young people at the resort.the spa facilities were pretty remarkable and affordable.the beach was incredible as was the food..restaurants..dont worry if you dont get in for the a la cartes..the buffets are fantastic.did not like the fact you have to line up to book the a la cartes, i m sure they can come up with a better system.loved that the complex is split up in blocks with pools at each but not exclusive to the people in the blocks.the entertainment was a little cheezy but fun.absolutely loved the theme nights. staff was very helpfull..freindly.all in all we would return in a heart beat. the nolitours reps were also to be comended..very helpful and billingual.merci pour votre aide. thank you ROYAL DECAMERON for a super vacation

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Cabania
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 10, 2010

RDC review

We stayed at RDC the last two weeks of March, 2010. We really enjoyed our experience.

This place is huge, but it doesn't necessarily feel over-crowded. We were there during spring break, so the place was likely at or near capacity.

I like the look and layout of RDC. The complex is spread out. The grounds are well groomed and maintained. It's pretty easy to move around. There are plenty of restaurants, bars and pools to accommodate up to 1200 guests.

The food is about what you'd expect from a resort of this class. It's not bad. There's usually enough variety at the buffet's to find what you like. They do a pretty good job changing the menu most nights. I did enjoy having breakfast either poolside or on the open terrace overlooking the beach. You can't beat that atmosphere.

The level of service was pretty good. We found the staff to be courteous and accommodating. We had a few 'favorite' servers that really looked after us.

RDC features 5 a la carte restaurants. You will likely have to wait in line to book at the Italian since it is the most popular and also the smallest. We had no difficulty booking for seven people in any of the other a la cartes.

I like the resort's proximity to town. It's an easy walk to a variety to restaurants, bars, art shops and stores. You can also stroll kilometers of beach in either direction.

Our room was kept pretty clean. I wish there was a fridge in the room, but we brought a collapsible cooler from home to keep water and beer cold. It was no problem getting ice from any of the resort's bars.

If you want to ensure you will have space at a beach palapa, you'll probably have to drop a towel on a beach lounger early in the morning. Many guests are 'reserving' palapas by 6 am. It's difficult to find space after 8 am. Personally, I dislike this practice but being indignant won't change it. The same thing happens at a lot of other places I've stayed at.

About 80% of the people staying at the resort are Canadian. I try to work on my limited grasp of Spanish when I travel, but it was a little harder this trip. English is spoken throughout the Bucerias area because there are hundreds if not thousands of Canadian snowbirds who stay there for several months of the year.

Eventually, when I stop working, I could easily spend a few months of the year in this area.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled with family
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6  Thank fuzzymcgillicuddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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