Need great AL in Riviera Maya!

Old Jan 11th, 2004, 02:19 PM
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Need great AL in Riviera Maya!

Traveling to Riviera Maya Feb.18th with 20y.o.,15y.o. and 11 y.o. We need a great deluxe AL for 5 nights. We can't stay at the Royal Hideaway because all kids have to be 13 and older. Someone recommended the Xpu-Ha Palace but I am concerned that we won't like it other than the great beach. Has anyone stayed at the Paradisus Riviera Cancun,Gala Resort Playacar or the Palladium Grand Resorts? We like a nice beach, nice pools with swim up bar, nightly entertainment( for the older kids) snorkeling, good food with choices and just a fun, relaxing time. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated appreciated!
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Old Jan 11th, 2004, 04:39 PM
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Barcelo Maya is very nice. It has a great beach and decent snorkelling righton the rpemises (most resorts you need to take a boat out for snorkelling). The Gala is also very nice and very close to the town of Playa Del Carmen. Barcelo is about a 15 minute cab ride away, Gala is minutes away. I've stayed at both of these with my kids and were pleased. Both have night entertainment (night club type place and disco), swim up bar, decent food (for AI, I don't think any AI has great food). Also at the Barcelo it was never trouble finding a lounge chair near the pool or beach in a shady spot (years ago when I was at Gala, you had to claim your pool chairs early in the morning). If your kids are athletic, Barcelo has tennis & basketball courts that were barely used (I don't remember if Gala had similar, we didn't use that at the time). My son was in heaven there.
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Old Jan 11th, 2004, 04:43 PM
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There have been comment here about the beach at Paradisus Riviera Cancun saying there is a seaweed problem at the beach. I believe it is located near the moon palace, which also has a very seaweedy beach.
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Old Jan 12th, 2004, 06:06 AM
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Thank you all for responding! Does anyone know anything about the Xpu-Ha palace?
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Old Jan 12th, 2004, 03:54 PM
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Hi, I will second Barcelo. We (10) stayed there over Christmas, and the snorkeling off of the pier was much better than expected. Never had to worry about beach chairs, always found something good to eat, the beach is very nice, there is nothing wrong with the rooms, and the grounds are beautiful. Any question, just ask. Owa
 
Old Jan 12th, 2004, 06:35 PM
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Has anyone stayed at the Xpu-Ha Palace recently?
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Old Jan 13th, 2004, 07:52 AM
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Do a text search on 'Xpu', you'll find some comments. Also check tripadvisor.com.
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Old Jan 17th, 2004, 06:36 PM
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My family just returned from Xpu-Ha Palace (to the arctic temps of New England this past week...!) and, although we won't do an all-inclusive resort again, we loved the place. My two teens, 17 and almost 19, were on college break, and they loved the place, too. It's built on a failed eco-park, so yes, it is spread out, but we appreciated the privacy of our palapa-roofed cabana at the far end of the resort. No walk was longer than 8-10 minutes, through wide, lush vegetation-lined paths dotted with some eco-park remnants: local animals kept in huge open air habitat enclosures.( As a science educator who has taken courses at the Bronx Zoo, I was impressed by the attention paid to these animals, such as the many toys in the tree-packed howler monkey enclosure. ) If you're really unable to walk, there is also a tram service that operates continually during the day into the evening. The place is anything but garish, to my eyes, but instead attempts to blend into the landscape. The food was fine, some of it obviously catering to the less adventurous Americans. The staff, all young Mayan locals, were wonderful! ( I'm forever indebted to our server who brought me my third serving of grilled shrimp as "dessert!" ) They were patient with our fumbled Spanish, and even helped us learn new phrases. There was good snorkeling both in the ocean inlet and the fresh water estuary in the middle of the resort. On the property, we saw plenty of Mexican spiny-backed iguanas, an anhinga, Yucatan vireos, and the chatty grackles that greeted us on our porch each morning, in addition to the flamingos and other birds that were in the 3-story open aviary. The beaches are gorgeous, with a choice of sandy calm beach for swimming or wild, rocky beach for sitting and gazing. You could go on ecology walks with the staff, check out the animal clinic, kayak, take a scuba lesson, get a massage on the beach in a glass-walled palapa. Although we didn't need it, there's a "kid club" for younger kids. There are two pools, but no swim up bar - the snack bars at each pool require you to de-pool.
As I said, this being our first all-inclusive resort, we realized we wanted more freedom in the future, but we all agreed that if Xpu-Ha Palace ever offered its rooms as regular hotel rooms, we'd book one in a minute. Feel free to ask more.
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