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“The King of Clubs”

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Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Playa Paraiso
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Colorado
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“The King of Clubs”
Reviewed August 9, 2010

The room service club sandwich was oustanding! Slices of bacon as thick as my finger, stacked high with veggies and meats...delicious! I wanted to make the whole review about the sandwich but I guess I can try to contribute something useful. We've been to Mexico five times over the last four years and this place was the best by far (other resorts: Royal Playa del Carmen-average, El Dorado Royale-above average, Riu Palace Cabo-average, Crowne Plaza San Jose-awful). The artwork at the Iberostar Grand feels like walking into a museum in Italy. Everything is spotless and relentlessly cleaned. The rooms are spacious with large decks, great for sitting (we had partial ocean view). Great variety for restaurants. We are not huge foodies but I got very accustomed to my lobster tail and kobe beef burger lunch everyday. One day we tipped a beach waiter $40 and he brought our group bucket after bucket of Corona and even made us nachos from the lunch buffet...great service. It's not a huge party resort but drinks are readily available and town is a 15 minute shuttle away if you want more nightlife. Didn't use the spa but swam in the indoor pool which was a nice break from the sun. Very peaceful and quiet resort. No problem getting places by the pool or on the beach. There are, of course, the people who wake at the crack of dawn to reserve "their" place by the pool that they won't use until noon but not enough to interfere with a daily agenda (sidenote: you people know who you are and really need to find a greater purpose in life). Overall, the Iberostar Grand is as close to perfect as it we've experienced in Mexico. Definately on the pricey side for Mexico but worth it.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
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7 Thank Jug35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Austin, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed August 8, 2010

The hotel is set up like a Roman palace- it is just beyond words. Next door, there are four other Iberostar resorts (five star resorts) that you can use their pools and restaurants as well. The Iberostar Maya/Lindo right next door even has a lazy river and a wave pool. We went over to those properties for a bit ,but then came back to the Grand, because it is just GRAND, and made us appreciate it all the more to go to the others next door that have lots of kids!! The rooms have a large balcony with a double swing and a sofa- all rooms are atleast junior suites and the spa on site is amazing- a large pool w/ 7 different kind of water massage jets - hard to explain- some are in the water and some are above it. Staying at the Grand, you can also use the big spa that all the resorts have access to, but ONLY Grand guests have complimentary access- it is really nice as well- we went over there and went through it. With the Grand, if you need anything, you only have to ask-all the details are just perfect. For example, if you forget your sunscreen, no problem, they have a basket of all kinds at the towel hut by the pool, as well as magazines, float rafts and boogie boards and noodles (next door at the Lindo/Maya, you rent the boogie boards for $12 a day.


The inside of the hotel is also just beyond words- it is also like a marble roman palace (but only nicer, I am sure) and you can either walk on the beautiful landscaped outdoor walkway or you can walk through the nice airconditioned fancy marble walkway to get everywhere- restaurants, pool, beach, room, etc. Room service is complimentary 24 hours a day. The bathrooms are gorgeous- two separate vanities and a large jacuzzi tub in the bathroom. Robes and slippers are complimentary, as well as a fully stocked minibar. The beds were amazing- no hard mattresses here!

What is a really, really neat feature about the Grand, is that because it is a five hotel Iberostar complex, there is a shopping center built just for the Iberostar hotels right there on the property- it is quite large and again, very, very nice. There is a diner there and ice cream shop and , of course, that is included as well. We went to Playa del Carmen one evening to do a little shopping (about 25 minutes south) but realized afterwards we could/should of just gone to the Iberostar shopping complex.

The beach- amazing- and I am a beach SNOB!!! I have seen so many beaches and hotels in Mexico from 3 star to six star and this has quite possibly the best beach I have seen. Actually, I will say it is the best beach. And, you can walk down a little ways away from the hotel (very safe) and there is a really neat shallow inlet beach that you will have all to yourself. Right next to it are some tidepools that are fun to look around in- we saw baby sargent major fish in them! Right in front of one side of the Grand, there are rocks in the water, but in front of the other half, just sand, no rocks in the water. It is just simply beautiful and definitely the widest beach I have seen at any hotel- it was easily double in width from all other beaches I have seen (even from the Iberostar properties right next door!).

The Grand is not a rowdy hotel with a dj sitting by the pool yelling and being silly the whole time, rather it is a very nice atmosphere. There were games to do (such as pool volleyball and beach volleyball, archery, horseshoes, air guns , bingo and other things at designated times) so there was plenty to keep you busy, but it is not loud and rowdy. Like I said, if you go next door to the other properties, you come back to your slice of Heaven and feel so grateful (and the other properties are really nice!!). My husband and I felt so very blessed to get to spend four nights in such a heavenly place.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
10 Thank travelgirl301
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pocatello, Idaho
Level 6 Contributor
98 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
Reviewed August 5, 2010

IB Grand = Whatever you want, whenever you want it. You will be treated like royalty, even if you are a middle class schmoe like me.

Food and service are excellent. The beach is very good - walk two hundred feet to the left (in front of the maya) for better swimming as there are obvious rocks in front of part of the grand. The three pools are varied: indoor spa, outdoor salt w swim up bar, and outdoor fresh "tranquil" quiet pool. If you want a drink anywhere, they will come to you. If you want ANYTHING, they will attempt to accommodate you. This place reminds me of some of the upscale subtle resorts of las vegas , like the Wynn, without the over the top casino parts.

You have full use of the other complex resorts - I recommend both long and windy pools at the Lindo area and at the Del Mar area. I also recommend using the Lindo Maya for the lunch buffet.

Rooms are large modern and well appointed. Large bathrooms. Nice swings and chaise lounges out on the balcony. Iguanas everywhere, and also great tailed grackles, if you like blackbirds. Other birds on property include cormorant, mockingbird, flycatchers, and chachalacas. You will also see coatis (Raccoon-ish badger like creatures) on property.

We also took advantage of full privs down at the Quetzal Toucan in PLaya Del Carmen - a nice afternoon there.

Now we don't know where to go from here - how does it get better?

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
8 Thank SEIdahoThomas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, TX
Level 4 Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed August 4, 2010

The "Grand" is by far the most opulant and "grand" hotel we have stayed in the Mexico area. We have stayed at the Royal in Playa twice, El Dorado Royale and the Valentin. We love the beach and the Playa location has always been appealing to us on vacation.

We stayed 6 nights and loved our room, and the service was wonderful.

Checkin: We got out of our limo and we were greeted by name. Went to the bar for a drink and were told we were already checked in so when we were ready they took us to our Ocean Front room. Oh they bring the bottle of alcohol to your table and pour your drink to your likeing - nice. Andwar our conseeair (sp) was spectacular. We choose our pillows, refreshed our mini fridge with Tangarey Gin and cokes so we were taken care of and shown where to go for dinner etc.. He greeted us daily by name asking us if we needed anything else. He even asked what time each night we would like our whirlpool drawn so when we arrived in our room we could go right to the hot whirlpool.

Food : We ate at all the restaurants enjoying all. Lunch was wonderful and I would rate it at times better than dinner. I am not going to bore you with the reviews from the restaurants. Hundreds have been posted.

Beach: We are beach people and found the ocean a bit rocky but still wonderful. The beach service, chairs all were top notch and NO need to get out to the beach at 6:00 am to get a palapa. We arrived at 10-12:00 noon each day and had no issues getting one.

Excursions: If you can you owe it to yourself to go swimming with the whale sharks. UNBELIEVABLE - we saw approx. 100-125 of them June 23 and purchased an DVD of us swimming in and out of the water with them. We purchased our tickets and the dive / place you get jet skis etc etc.

We got our shopping fix from a trip to Playa in the am from our hotel and it was I think
$ 8.00 round trip. 4 hours was enough time - go in the am because it gets really hot later on.

Cell Phones: I purchased a SIM card for my blackberry (unlocked) form Cellular Abroad and had plenty of minutes to call home each night. A great bargain!!! Just get the "Mexico" sim card and you are good to go.

We are planning on returning next year for a week. We probably will not spend the money on an ocean front room. We never really looked out since we were in the water till 8:00 pm nightly.

Enjoy you won't be disappointed.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
9 Thank smoore89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandbach, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 4, 2010

Finally gotten around to writing something about this hotel. First stayed in the complex in 2006 and watched the Grand being built from the beach at the Maya. We went back to the Maya in 2007 and took a tour to the Grand as part of that trip. We decided in 2008 to stay at the Grand, and returned with friends in 2009. We're also booked in again in September this year (2010).

My girlfriend and I have become Iberostar Grand "bores" - because we rave about it to everyone. On our recommedation friends of ours had their honeymoon at the hotel this year. The hotel didn't let any of us down and they had a great time.

There's nothing more that I can add to the numerous reviews that are already present on this site. However a quick word about the restaurants. The poor old Italian seems to get some stick, and my girlfriend and I have puzzled over the comments. We think it's the victim of false expectation. It's not a traditional italian place. You won't find too many traditional pasta dishes and no pizzas on the menu. We think it would be better to think of it as a Mediterranean restaurant - serving lots of fish dishes, risottos and the like.

If you are in the mood for pasta it's not the place for you.

Of all the restaurants on offer we seem to end up in the Italian most.

Special mention for the Gourmet in the Lindo though: we really like it there too - it's the only "off site" restaurant we think is near to the standard of the other Grand restaurants and worth a visit.

I read a recent comment about the inclusive wine list. That person is correct, it's not fine wine but it's very drinkable and there's enough variety to complement your choice of dish. There is an optional wine list for additional cost, but there's nothing on there (in my view anyway) that warrants spending more money.

Final thing: there's also been some mention about theft. We were really taken aback by this. We always use the safe that is located in the room. We store cameras, iPod, passports, cash, credit cards etc in there. During our trip last year we arrived back to our room after a day at the beach, to find a note from security advising that our maid had noticed the safe open, had locked the safe and to get it opened we should contact security. With our hearts in our mouths we watched security open the safe and to our relief all our valuables were still there.

We don't know if we were lucky, or the other folks who have had things stolen were unlucky. We're hoping (perhaps naively) that it's the latter, and that thefts are few and far between. We've certainly had no problems with this during any of our visits.

On a positive note, we're due to arrive there again this year on 19th September for two weeks and we can't wait!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
9 Thank GRClarke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Long Island New York
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed August 2, 2010

This paradise was all we had hoped for! The Grand is truly the grandest of the Iberostar'sresorts in the Riveria Maya. We loved the adults-only setting as well as our ocean-front suite (complete with full deck and rattan swing!) The resort itself is a spectacular work of art and the pools are incredible. HOWEVER, BE MINDFUL OF THIS ONE CAVEAT: I had to visit the clinic on the grounds (arm sprain) and before I knew it the "doctor" was telling me I MUST go by ambulance to the hospital in Cancun! He refused to treat me at all there! At the hospital in Cancun, I ran into another guest from the Grand who had a cold - she also was told she must go by ambulance to see an EMT! This was a total racket going on, and I complained to management upon my return. They informed me the clinic runs independantly from the resort (ie: no true hotel doctor available). I let them know how I had been taken (very expensive with a diagnosis of a sprain and to take aspirin - for $600.00!) We have traveled to many fine resorts and this never happened to us before. Considering this is a very expensive resort, I made it known there should be a hotel doctor available! So beware of the "Clinic" - it's a total rip-off, unless you have a life-threatening injury or illness!

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
9 Thank berlin4evr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman, Oklahoma
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed August 2, 2010

We stayed at the Paraiso after hearing an amazing review from my husband's co-worker, and were not dissappointed.
The resort was absolutely beautiful - paintings on the ceilings reminiscent of European castles, marble columns everywhere. The pool was beautiful and we loved the absence of screaming kids and brooding teenagers. It was a much more relaxed, low-key place.
The beach chairs were plentiful and rarely crowded - plus, there was a smiling waiter there who would bring us drinks from the bar whenever we needed one (the only bad part about this was the bathroom being so far away). We waded in the beach a bit but were mostly there to just relax and read.
Every single staff member we encountered was helpful and genuinely friendly.
One warning - the mosquitos were horrible as soon as the sun went down. Everyone just magically dissappeared from poolside lest they be eaten alive.
We ate at each of the ala carte restaurants and loved them all. The buffets were a bit of a mystery sometimes - no placards saying what the dishes were - but the food was fresh and enjoyable. I think my favorite was the French place - the desserts were to die for. I would suggest trying the Japanese place early in your visit since you eat with other guests and can make some friends.
Our room was beautiful and spacious and clean, and very well-taken care of. Mini-bar was well stocked with beer, water and tiny liquor bottles, and you could call for a bottle of champagne whenever you wanted one.
We booked an all-day snorkeling tour to Cozumel and were delighted with the trip, but in retrospect we still paid $400 for that entire day at the resort and didn't take advantage of anything. Oops!
I did a massage at the beautiful spa and loved every second of it. Make sure to check out the taco stand in the shopping plaza - VERY good, fresh tacos but lines can be a bit long and slow. The resort will take you down to the plaza in a golf cart so you don't have to walk.
We didn't make any of the shows because we preferred the late, uncrowded dinner seating times. We never had a problem getting a reservation.
We stayed at this resort in November 2008. I am just now posting a review because we are planning a return visit for this November. We are going to stay at the cheapest resort in the complex - the Paraiso del Mar while we spend a couple of days going on excursions to Chichen Itza and Xcaret, then we're going home to the Grand to be pampered in style!
Try the Grand. You will LOVE it!

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank DeeJayOK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso

Property: Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso
Address: Carretera Chetumal - P. Juarez Km 309, Playa Paraiso, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Paraiso
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#1 Green Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#1 Romantic Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Paraiso
#1 Luxury Hotel in Playa Paraiso
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso 5*
Number of rooms: 310
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

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