I have appreciated most of the reviews for this resort and have found them very reflective of our great experience at the Grand. I will try not to be redundant in my review and, instead, attempt to offer some original thoughts.
We stayed at the Grand Nov 11-19/09 and had an absolute great time. Here are some things that made our trip better and things we wished we knew or brought:
1. iPod docking station: the main pool does not have working speakers which, if you like to be perched near the booze like we do, matters! Another guest (Scott rocks) had a docking station and the bartenders didnt mind at all that we had music going. The other guests appreciated it as well. When Scott and his docking station/speakers left we were forced to bring our in-room alarm clock/docking station down to the pool which the bartenders plugged in without hesitation. The sound was not as good.
2. Dont pay for an upgrade: we were complimentarily upgraded to an ocean front room free of charge. Our agent advised the hotel that we were celebrating our anniversary and they offered us the free upgrade. The room/view/butler service was superior from what I understand and we loved our room...more than we would have had we not had the view..however, the upgrade is VERY expensive and we would not have found it worth the additional $75-150 extra per night. So much for us "using discretion" re. telling ppl.
3. There is very little authentic mexican food offered at the resort and it can only be found at the lunch buffet near the ocean. We opted to take a cab into Playa and shared the cost with another couple (recommended as the price is $20 1 way). Heard that you can offer a diff amount but we werent in the mood to barter with a cabbie who was responsible for our lives in mexico. :) As for clubs in Playa (Parrot Bay and Coco Bongo)
4. The pool service (towels, books etc) provides free sun screen. We had run out by day #5 and the last 2 days we used the free stuff. Great because the lobby store was selling it for a million $.
5. Ask for a bottle of booze for your room, dont open it and you can bring it back home.
6. Hit the lazy river over at the Maya (bring a drink with you).
7. DVD players in the room, bring your own movies. We tried everything to get Juno (limited selection) to play and gave up. We still werent convinced that it wasnt going to be in Spanish.
8. Bring your own Hairdryer. They have ones that over heat and/or blow poorly.
9. Order the down pillows off of the pillow menu...the butterfly ones for stomach sleepers are laughably uncomfortable.
10. As per other reviews, bring your own golf balls and bug spray (both expensive at the club). Rental clubs are decent.
11. Tell your butler that you are celebrating something (if even a great get away) and they will make an evening romantic with an all out turn down service (chocs, champagne, roses etc). Tell him what day you want it.
12. Lap top: the safe is not large enough to store your laptop. They offer cords and free in room internet, but not WIFI. We had to hide our laptop each day. Bring a locking cord.
13. Ask your butler for slippers. The floors are all marble and rather cold.
14. You can request breakfast room service on your balcony. They will set it all up for you.
Thats about all. Feel free to contact me if you have specific questions. If you choose the Grand you will not be let down...the place is absolutely amazing.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Directly on the long, fine, sandy beach of Playa Paraiso in Mexico's Riviera Maya. Top 5-star luxury. Quiet and relaxing. Personal butler and concierge service. 24 hour all inclusive service. 4 a la carte restaurants. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Playa Paraiso
- Playa Paraiso Iberostar
- Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso Playa Paraiso, Riviera Maya, Mexico