Riviera Maya Resorts

Aug 30th, 2004, 08:17 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Riviera Maya Resorts

Looking for suggestions for a nice (adult only) resort. We might consider All-inclusive, but not sure as the food is usually sub-par at best. If we didn't do AI, is it easy to get around to good restaurants in this area? El Dorado caught our eye...

We also love to do excursion off the property, especially snorkeling, diving, fishing, sunset cruises...

Thanks for any insight....

ScottB is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 09:11 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 429
Definitely look into the Royal Hideaway. Its a smaller resort then the others in the Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen area. The grounds/service/food are all 5 star. I believe children under the age of 16 are not allowed so it definitely appeals more to adults. You really cannot go wrong at this resort. I went there 3 years ago for my 1 year anniversary. You can't even compare it to the Sandals. And from there you can do different excursions. I highly recommend Chichen Itza and if you have time (we didn't) check out Coba. Good luck,Susan
SSypniewski is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 10:00 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 108
I second the suggestion of Royal Hideaway. I've never been there, but have been going to the area for a few years, and it is usually regarded as the best AI in the region.

I can't think of many Adult Only resorts in the area. Adventura Spa Palace is one that comes to mind, but its not the same calibre as the Hideaway.

Be careful in the reviews of the El Dorado. There are (were) two resorts with very similar names and people often confuse them. El Dorado Royale and El Dorado Resort and Spa. Just a heads up.

Ken
Ken_in_Mass is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 10:20 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
After spending a couple hours reading through many trips reports on Tripadvisor, I'm not so sure El Dorado Royale or Royal Hideaway is going to cut it. They both seem to have their good points, but we found consistant complaints about each that would bum us out for sure. At RH, several trip reports complain of crowded beach & pool areas...not for us. The number one complaint at EDR was a foul smell near some of the buildings, yikes!!

Both places seem to get decent food reviews, but not great. We did the all-inclusive thing on our first 2 visits to the caribbean when we were in our 20's, and it was fine. After going the condo route over the last several years, and doing meals on our own, we have enjoyed this over the all-inclusives by far. Is this possible to do in the Riviera Maya area? Are there decent condo choices? Thankyou very much for the responses....
ScottB is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 10:42 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 108
Well, first, I would take tripadvisor reviews with a grain of salt. It seems to attract some of the more vindictive vacationers I have ever run across. I have read reviews for places I've stayed at and hardly recognize them.

In any case, most of the larger resorts in the Riviera Maya area are AI. Your two best options that are not AI are Playa Del Carmen itself, which I suspect (only inference here, not experience) would also have somewhat crowded beaches. Or look into the Akumal area further south. I know there are a lot of smaller resorts in that area.

A message board run by locals in the area that is a good place to search for info and suggestions outside the AI resorts is www.playadelcarmeninfo.com

Good luck in your planning.

Another thing that comes to mind, looking at your list of interests, is Cozumel which is just off the Riviera Maya coast and a short ferry ride away. It could be a source of either excursions, or resorts, or both.

Ken
Ken_in_Mass is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 12:49 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 106
Scott,

Check out www.playadelcarmeninfo.com. Great website on the area and also a nice forum - they cater to the "Non-AI" crowd. We have gone to PDC the past two years and the year before that we were in Akumal. A good website for the area south of PDC check out www.locogringo.com. We stayed in a condo that year. Plenty of interesting restaurants in Akumal. Check out Tulum if you want uncrowded beaches - we made a day trip there Easter week two years ago - and you could count on one hand the number of people we ran into.
JuliePA is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 01:29 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 202
Hi, Scott..I feel your pain.Having also visited several AI'S in my twenties and being ready for something more...I was skeptical of any AI that my fiance mentioned for a weekend get-away.After a bit of reluctance due to some things I had read on tripadvisor, I agreed to Royal Hideaway, I was prepared for the worst(ie..wristbands like I was part of a cattle herd, bad food , and people who were drunk, obnoxious, and not well-traveled.)I was so pleasantly surprised...I was met with a cool drink, professional staff, and a class acts pretty much all the way around.That coming from one who loves Ritz' and Four Seasons.The rooms were perhaps not as plush as I love, but then again you are in Mexico. I cant get a super luxe room in Las Vegas.It is the only AI in Mexico to be part of the leading hotels of the world...it is NOT like Sandals ...I promise.You might also consider maroma...www.maromaresort.com We are considering it for an upcoming trip. Let me know of any questions you might have.
capri767 is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 05:30 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Thankyou for the recomendations guys. I will check out those websites for sure. We have been considering Riviera Maya for a while now, but want to make the right choice of course. Like I said before, As good of reviews as RH gets, I'm just not sure we are into the AI thing anymore. We really love to dine out at different restaurants, and between having to make reservations every night, and crowded pools & beaches, RH probably isn't the right choice for us. We are hoping to find a nice resort/condo, on a good beach, which is convenient to restaurants and maybe a little night life (not Cancun). Thanks again for your help... Are there any resorts down there that have a good snorkeling reef on site??
ScottB is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 05:41 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 106
If you want snorkeling "on site" I would check out Akumal. The condo we stayed in was on Half Moon Bay, not a swimmable beach because of the rocky bottom but you could snorkel right from shore and also in the area is Yal Ku Lagoon - amazing snorkeling there (go early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the tour buses!). We saw all kinds of fish, octopus, turtles, barracudas, rays etc. For swimming we would drive the short distance (1/2 mile) to Akumal Bay, go out in Half Moon Bay on rafts or hang out in the pool.

Have fun wherever you decide to go!
JuliePA is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 07:03 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,300
Scott
I can vouch for ElDorado Royale Resort and Spa as a top notch operation, with excellent rooms (even the lowest cost ones) and very good food and drinks. The smell that is referred to is quite simple to explain. The coast of Mexico in this area has some swampy areas. On the far west side of the resort, just behind the fence, is a swampy area. Sometime as you walk along the path that borders this area you can smell the swamp. Many people mistake this for sewer smells, but is just the swamp. I suppose if your room was on the back row of buldings you might smell this as you walked back and forth from the room but doubt if you would ever smell it in your room or when on your balcony/patio at they are on the east side of the buildings.

If I had any negative thing to say about this resort (and I really do not) it would be that the beach is a touch rocky and they do not have Hobie cats.

Really, this is a very nice adults only resort and we really enjoyed it. The staff is wonderful.

Curt is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 07:35 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 445
I can also vouch for the El Dorado Resort and Spa. I spent four days there and thought it was nice, if not somewhat basic. But the food was good and the room was clean, AC worked well, pool areas nice, staff was accomodating. Beach shoes required but we did snorkel quite a bit right off their beach.

We took a taxi into Akumal and I really liked this little town. Check out Las Casitas Akumal. That would be my next choice for a return visit. This would be non-AI of course, but Akumal has some good restaurants.
Kath is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 08:21 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Kath & Curt-
Is the snorkeling good right out front at El Dorado? How easy is it to get in & out of town (Akumal)? Walkable? How much for a cab? Kath, I couldn't find any info on Las Casitas in Akumal.

Capri, Maroma looks awesome, but a bit out of my price range.
ScottB is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 09:51 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 445
The website for the casitas is http://www.lascasitasakumal.com/. Akumal is not walkable from the EDRS, but I believe we paid $10 for a cab ride. I can't remember though if that was one way or round trip. Sorry.

This was my first and only time to snorkel, so take my opinion with that in mind. There were lots of fish and you could go really far out from the beach because it remains so shallow. But the coral there is not colorful, I don't know if that means it's "dead" or not. THere is also a long pier out from the beach bar into the ocean and they feed the fish daily there so it's a good spot to put in for snorkeling. Just wanted to make sure you understand I'm talking about the El Dorado Resort and Spa, NOT the El Dorado Royale. I've never seen the Royale .
Kath is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 10:54 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 202
If I were you, I would look seriously at Maroma....it seems high but gets great comments from both Travel and Leisure and Conde Nast.
capri767 is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 02:37 AM.