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El Dorado Royale, by Karisma
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Playa Paraiso
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed December 20, 2009

We just returned from our stay at El dorado Royale and it is a beautiful resort. We were there from Dec 12 to 19th. We had great weather, very humid the first few days, hot and sunny. We had some heavy rains at night, but this helped the humidity. Lets start with the grounds:
Grounds" they are lovely, the flowers are beautiful and full of colour, very well maintained and clean.
Rooms: nice, we had an oceanfront jr jaquzzi suite, the view was limited as we were on the second floor and had a tree in front of our room, also the boardwalk along the front of the rooms was lined with trees. You could see some ocean, but if you are staying in an oceanfront, ask for the 3rd floor, there you can see.
The rooms were clean and nice, nothing great, but comfortable
Food: I can not see how people said the portions were small, yes the appetizer but they are everywhere, You had more food than you could eat. We only had an appetizer and our main entree and we usually could not have dessert as we were full. The food is excellent, we did not have one bad meal, every meal was better than the last. Kampai is great, we went for lunch and dinner, fantastic. Jo Jo's was great, same menu for lunch and dinner. The fish & chips is excellent, fish is red snapper and large pieces. La Isla was also amazing for all three meals. D'talia was excellent, had an hour wait there, but we passed the time in the Martini bar. They give you a buzzer when your table is ready.
Check in for us was bad, we arrived around 2:30Pm, our room was not ready, we were told to come back in about an hour, we had one of the restaurants call to see if our room was ready they said 15 minutes and someone would come get us. We waited another 45 minutes and flagged down one of the staff in a golf cart, his name was Roberto, he said he would go get our luggage, our keys and come back and pick us up to take us to our room, he came back as promised and took us to our room, he apologize, we should have been given a buzzer to advise when our room was ready.
The only issue with staff was the front desk. They asked for our credit card to put a $500.00 deposit on, I refused, told them I do not want a charge of $500.00 on my card gaining interest for a week for nothing, the girl didnt like that, said " don't you have $500.00" I still refused and they made me sign I would pay for all charges.
The beach is rocky and the red flag was up , but there are a number of pools,
We were usually at the main pool by Ls Isla, large, near the end they had an issue with the filter system, after the big storm, the pool was not as clean as I would like, but you can just go to another one.
The last two days we were there a large group of loud mouth American yahoo's showed up. We don't need to hear them yelling at the top of their voices to make their presence known, It is an adult resort, if I wanted that I would have gone were there are kids allowed.
We have been to cancun a number of time, have always loved it, and this was no different.
I would return to the El dorado, great resort, excellent food, great staff.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Allyop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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7,743 - 7,749 of 10,208 reviews

Reviewed December 17, 2009

We booked our holiday through Hayes and Jarvis, flew with Thomson airline from Birmingham to Cancun, we did have to stop off in Manchester to refuel the plane, as Birminghams runway is not big enough to do so. After our long flight we arrived in Cancun mid afternoon and were met outside of Cancun airport by a Hayes and Jarvis rep and taken to our transfer bus, which was a private mini bus just for the two of us so was a stress free start to the holiday. It took about 30 mins to get to our hotel (straight route from airport) We pulled up outside the hotel and were met by a bell boy who took our luggage and gave us a ticket, we were then greated with a glass of Champagne. Check in is after 3pm, it was after this time when we arrived so we checked in straigh away, we had no problems, but they did ask us for a credit card swipe, although I do carry 1 with me abroad incase of emergency, I advised them I didn't have a credit card with me and nothing more was said about it... Simple! We received the keys to our room and the safe key aswel, the bell boy met us outside and took us to our room on a golf buggie, 1614, he did give us a tour of the resort first which was nice. Our is opposite La Isla, which has a swimming pool right next to it, close to the beach and Jojo's grill, quite a nice location.
The resort itself is lovely, I couldn't really say a bad thing about it, apart from it is a bit quiet, the hotel has an activities pool where they will play water polo, volleyball, aerobics etc, they do have other activities such as snorkeling, bike rides and Kayaking (we did neither) which is included in the all inclusive. They also have water activities you can pay extra for aswel like Wave runners. para sailing scuba diving etc... We did the wave runner 65USD for 30 mins and that was 2 of us on one wave runner. There is only one bar to go to of an evening that has entertainment and music.
I would recommend the buffet at Cocotal for your breakfast, maybe Jojo's for lunch (you have to try the Caribbean Ice Cream) or theres a burger and pizza place by the pool near Jojos, didn't catch the name! We didn't get to eat in D'Italia as there was a wait of nine tables before we would have got seated! Even though they say you don't need a reservation.
Make sure you do the shuttle bus to Playa Del Carmen and Cancun, it's nice to get out of the resort, we actually walked to the main road and got on the local shuttle bus amongst the locals (5USD for 2 to Cancun) Quite an experience I must say!
You will need a lot of tipping money, they do work hard and I kinda felt bad if I didn't give them anything, especially the bell boys and the men from room service. The staff are so friendly at the resort, always saying "Hola!" as they pass by which was nice.
We stayed in a Jacuzzi Suite (which is a standard room at this hotel) but it was lovely!! The Jacuzzi was fab! The bathroom was so so clean, the maids cleaned it everyday, but if you are in your room, make sure you lock your door (or put the 'do not disturb' sign up) during the day as they do have a tendancy to walk in lol!
All in all was very impressed, was a bit nervous when I saw some of the reviews on here, but there is nothing to worry about. A lot of people moan about the sand bags, but actually if they weren't there, the El Dorado wouldn't have a beach!!!! Plus the fish swim around them so you have more chance of seeing the sealife.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank lookoftheirish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

My husband I spent 11 days at the El Dorado Royale for our honeymoon. We were there from 11/30-12/10. I would like the say that if you're planning your honeymoon here...you will love it. This is definitely a good place for honeymooners. Me personally anything over 7 days just got to be too much for us. At about 7 days we were ready to go home and we love to travel. We just got a bit stressed out with constantly being asked to get a massage when we were relaxing on the beach. I counted one afternoon and I was approached 4 times by the same guy while trying to relax on the beach. I am not easy to irritate but after days and days of being asked it got to be much. It wasn't just the spa staff that was overzealous in selling it was also the companies located near the beach and main pool that offer parasailing and tours...my gosh how many times did I take a different route to avoid some of the guys there....TOO MUCH PRESSURE! I also received two spa treatments and I wasn't impressed. I didn't feel like I got much out of those services. The lady was very sweet but I work in a spa and I was hoping to learn something to take back with me and it was par for the course. Okay now to what we enjoyed!! The property is very beautiful...very much enjoyed the landscape and the folks that worked there. The food was delicious. I can honestly say that I haven't had food that good in all of my life. My husband and I have become so fond of soup since our trip. This resort had some of the finest soups that either of us have ever tried. We recommend the Portabello mushroom soup at D'Italia as well as the Garlic Cream and Leek Oil soup at Cocotal. Try all of the soups!!! We were never let down. Also the Fettucinne Alfredo at La Isla was delicious!! All of the food was 5 stars! I will say I wasn't as impressed with Konpaii...it still wasn't bad though...just not amazing. One night I ate at Fondue and asked the waiter to get me a drink like the lady next to me and it was called,"The Devil Inside". It was yummy and boy does it give you a buzz...oh my!! Overall it was a fun experience....I was able to relax and have quality time with my husband and we found ourselves really enjoying the evening entertainment. Take time to look at the stars at night...truely beautiful. I will say that I think 11 days anywhere is a bit long for us because we like to travel around so maybe we just felt kind of antsy. If you're going for longer than 7 days I recommend tours otherwise you might go a bit stir crazy. Thanks for taking the time to read. This is all true from our hearts...everyone is different...we personally would not go back...we feel we've seen it and we're ready for our next adventure. Everyone should see it once though... :) Peace :)

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank hlokitty21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

We just returned from a long weekend stay (3 nights) at El Dorado. Let me give you a little background on where I am coming from with this review. Typically, my husband and I travel to see destinations - Italy, Paris, big cities, etc. We have a fantastic time but come home exhausted. I booked this resort to force us to relax. Since this resort is not directly in a city and it takes some effort to leave, I thought it would force us have some downtime. So, from that perspective some of the things I didn't like you might not have a problem with.
Arrival - if you arrive before three most likely you will have to wait to check in. If you are coming from a cold destination and have more clothes on than necessary, make sure you have access to some beach wear so you can change when you arrive. We arrived at 1 and did not get our room until 3. We did not change so we had to walk around the resort for two hours and it got pretty warm. We did find a beach bed in the shade and we took a nap. We called at three from a phone near our bed and they came and picked us up and took us to our room.
Resort - the grounds are immaculate and beautiful. Pools, beach beds, lounge chairs abound through out the resort at the pools and on the beach. Due to economy, etc I assume their business is down. It was not uncommon to see a whole pool completely empty. If you like privacy I don't think you have any trouble finding some. The entire resort is very large and the shuttles are helpful if you can catch one. Beware though, they are pretty fast and move around corners quickly - we almost got run down a few times.
Rooms- we stayed in a gardenview room near the main pool. This was mostly to save money but we were really pleased because these rooms are at the heart of the resort and I would say we did less walking than most guests. Casitas, swim up and oceanview rooms are much further away from the main pool, lobby, etc. The room was very clean but did smell a little bit musty when you entered. I did not notice it after that though. I could hear the people next to us taking a shower but that only happened once.
Restaurants - We ate somewhere different every meal and ate at all the restaurants that were open. They were all fabulous and we liked them all. Since we were not in the Casitas, we could not make reservations. We went to dinner about 7 - 7:30 every night and had to wait from 20 minutes to 75 minutes for our table. For this reason, my husband said he did not like the resort. To me, the wait was worth the money we saved by not staying in the Casitas. If you had gone to dinner earlier (around 6) you would not have to wait.
Beach-the MAJOR draw back of this place. You can read all the reviews about the awful sandbags on the beach. We knew they would be there but we didn't think they would be that bad. They were BAD and made swimming in the ocean pretty impossible. For this reason, I would not go back. Next time I will try another Karisma resort with a better beach.
All in all it was a wonderful resort, but after one day of sitting around the resort we got kind of bored. We did book an excursion to Xel Ha since we could not swim in the ocean or snorkel very well at El Dorado. This made a our second day better.

If you are looking for a great relaxing resort with no plans to travel or see other things then this is the place for you. The service is great and you will enjoy it. If you want a beautiful ocean to swim in then I would not recommend it. Rates are pretty low right now and considering how much we ate and drank, we got a steal of a price. If I had paid closer to their regular rates, I think I would have been more disappointed.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank lifelong_wanderer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

It was my first time to Mexico and to an all inclusive in general and now I am spoiled!

El Dorado Royale was fabulous. Arrived and was offered a cold towel and was directed to a special check in room (I am a travel agent and was there for "business") Was offered a cold glass of champagne and checked in painlessly.

A golf cart took us and our bags to our room (located in little villas scattered around the resort) which was beautiful! large modern washroom with a huge shower and seperate toilet room, 4 poster canopy bed, seating area, huge jacuzzi with a candle, a bottle of chilled champagne-the workings!

The service at the hotel really stood out to me-everyone went out of their way to make sure you were happy-they could not do enough for you (and they don't expect tips!)
Each cluster of villas has their own concierge villa located right across from them. My concierge David (by building 2) was so helpful! He knew my key didn't work and before I could run downstairs to tell him, he was already on his way up to fix the problem!

The food was excellent at the resort-because of my limited time I only was able to eat at a few restaurants, but I enjoyed everything-really GOURMET food!
The breakfast buffer at Cocotal was incredible! Sit down breakfast at La Isla was excellent and has a gorgeous setting overlooking one of the main pools. There were no line ups anywhere! Dinner at Jojo's was excellent and the service was incredible. The healthbar is great for lunch or smoothies!
Another great thing is that the resort actually has a greenhouse on property and they grow most of the vegetables you will be eating!

The resort is large but is all built right along the beachfront so everything is easy to find! If you don't want to walk, there are always golf carts available to take you wherever you want to go.

I did the parasailing excursions which was amazing (and a good price!) and also went horseback riding which was quite an experience!

El Dorado Royale is a truly amazing resort and I would/do recommend it to friends and clients and I cannot wait to go back!

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled on business
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5  Thank spirit0ftravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

My husband specifically chose this resort for our recent vacation because our experience in January 2007 was outstanding...we stayed in a Casita Suite both times so feel we can compare apples to apples.

We were disappointed with our most recent experience for these reasons:
* Food was not the quality it was last time
* Amenities were not first class (shampoo, conditioner, soaps etc)
* Table linens we experienced last time were mostly absent at dinner
* Orange juice was mostly water - small detail but clearly a budget saving measure
* Service at most restaurants was okay but not great
* Concierge service not as attentive and seemed distracted

Positives:
* Internet is now available in rooms for those of us who work while on vacation
* Resort is kept very clean and well-maintained
* New Spa on property is lovely

Now that we have been back a second time we will not return a third - if the experience was as wonderful as in 2007 we would return but clearly the property managers are cutting costs every chance they get and it's starting to affect guest experience.

I would continue to recommend the property to people who have never experienced it before. But not to those who have been there.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank ARubins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

I stayed at the Jacuzzi Junior Suite Bldg.9 garden for 7 nights..is in no where , some where about 45 mins. to hotel strips in downtown Cancun and 30 mins. to the airport. The resort is huge and still never have a chance to visit the main pool. FOODS are gourmet and NO Buffets and all of the 7 Restaurants are great , The Kampai Restaurant is a Asian Food and everyone give a very high rate but I think is just ok.. For food lover, you will love El Dorado Royale..
It is a couple, single and adult only resort and we love it BUT it is too quiet and not much of action because of the resort is too big from point A to point B...They don't have enough Entertainment Team cover every spots..
Everyone are so Sweet and helpful, landscapes are well kept ...
My favorite is Martini bar at the Lobby and please try Chocolate Martini is the best...
My favorite breakfast is Cocotel.
My best lunch is JOJO.
The resort have a free shuttle bus to Cancun every Thurs and Friday and to Playa De Carmen is every Wed. and Friday. Only thing that made me upset is ..I arrived on Monday afternoon and try to make a reservation to Playa De Carmen either Wed or Friday but it is FULL and they don't want to add more bus to make their customer happy, they told me to take a taxi about $ 50 round trip ...WHY I have to pay when the resort is supply the free shuttle. Suggestion is reserve on line before you go...
Thank you for a nice services from Gavy at the VIP to every waiters and waitresses , K Teams and all the sweet Hostess at every restaurants ....Have a Happy Holidays!!!!

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank sujamas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Dorado Royale, by Karisma

Address: Carretera Cancun - Tulum Km. 45, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly El Dorado Royale)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Spa Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#2 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 Romantic Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Price Range: $323 - $1,037 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Dorado Royale, by Karisma 4.5*
Number of rooms: 639
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Conde Nast Traveler Readers’Top 100 Hotels in the world and a AAA Four Diamond Resort, El Dorado Royale is an adults-only destination that provides the ultimate in service in the ultimate setting.With more than a mile of sandy beach in Mexico's Riviera Maya, El Dorado Royale, a Spa Resort, by Karisma offers an escape which no other destination can match. All the luxuries you can dream of, combined with an emphasis on personal attention to your every whim, make this an ideal location for a getaway. Travelers join us from around the world for romantic outdoor beach weddings or ceremonies in our intimate beachfront chapel, relaxing honeymoons, anniversary celebrations, or just much needed time off. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Dorado Royale Hotel Riviera Maya
El Dorado Royale Mexico
El Dorado Royale Cancun
El Dorado Royale Spa Resort
El Dorado Royale Resort
Eldorado Royale
El Dorado Royale, By Karisma Playa Paraiso, Riviera Maya, Mexico

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