Riveria Maya Resort /Apple HELP

Feb 15th, 2004, 01:14 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 42
Riveria Maya Resort /Apple HELP

Planning an Apple vacation May 2004. Can't decide on resort.....Gala Beach Resort Playacar, Barcelo Maya Beach Resort, Iberostar Paraiso del Mar or The Palladium Grand Beach Resort. The Iberostar is the most expensive..we're sure it's beautiful..but is it much nicer than the Gala Beach Resort. I've heard mixed reviews on the Barcelo Maya Beach Resort. We liked what Apple wrote about the Palladium Grand Beach Resort, but the travel agent never heard of it. We're in our 40's and looking for a beautiful beach (with shade) with nice flat surf. Also would like to know about the food..we were really disappointed in our AI last year!! How's Apple Vacations? Any info on the about 4 hotes and Apple would be greatly appreciated. Also, there is a travel website specifically for the Dominican Republic..are there any for Mexico? Hope to get alot of responses. Thanks in advance for all your advise.

Susie

P.S......need to book this by Thursday 2/19/04...
vac_summer is offline  
Feb 15th, 2004, 03:20 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 76
My friend and her husband went to the Palladium last year and loved it. They said the grounds were beautiful, food good, pools great. I have also heard it's a great place for kids. Go to www.tripadvisor.com for reviews on all the hotels you mentioned. Two other good forum websites are www.playadelcarmeninfo.com and mytravelboard4.com. Have a great vacation!
Cindyrella is offline  
Feb 15th, 2004, 06:26 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 323
I went to Cancun with Apple two years ago and had no problems. Their hotel rep was really nice too. I think the Palladium is either new or its a previously existing hotel operating under a new name because this year's brochure was the first time I'd seen it.

You can put some emphasis on what apple says about the hotels, but not too much emphasis. I know a couple of times when they were 'off' in their ratings (hotel not as good as stated). I am almost certain that some resorts pay apple for those 'golden apple' ratings. Pay attention to what people say on this board or other bulletin boards you may find. Also try epinions.com for ratings.
katolb90 is offline  
Feb 16th, 2004, 04:48 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 57
Hello,
I agree with the last post. We stayed in the iberostar for 2 weeks, did not care for it. I get up early, no coffee maker inthe rooms, and tghe buffet does not open til 7, and its at the entry which seemed like it was a mile walk. Often had to search to find out where they might be serving your next meal, very confusing program for meals. One day a resteraunt by the beach might be serving, but often I would walk there, and it was closed, so then I had to search the immense grounds to find out where they were serving that day. Even though we were there for 2 weeks,the food was okay, mostly buffets, but not bad, lots of selections, they could not get us reservations in 2 of hte resteraunts on site that are part of the package (we did not get to go to the steakhouse or to the japanese resteraunt as they were both mysteriously booked that far in advance), so ended up eating 2x in other okay resteraunts. Also big problem we had is there is nothing to do near the hotel, its a 45 minute drive to Cancun, and a half hour to Playa Del Carmen, and fairly expensive by cab. The beach is also more or less unusable, very rough, narrow, we didn't go in the water. Its a nice place if you just want to float in their central river, with swim up bars, and relax, but not a good spot as far as access to tours. Be warned however, they do karoke at the swim up bars in the afternoon..........not alwasy pretty.
As far as Apple, good guides, everything was on time, but I did not agree with thier golden apples at all. We transferred to the Sun Palace for another 2 weeks in Cancun, it was supposed to be the best hotel they had, and it was terrible, would never go to a Palace resort again. I assumed 5 golden apples were equal to 5 star, and I would give them 1 star. Okay rooms, but they even set up a timeshare desk by the elevators so you cannot get any peace in the hotel, they are constantly trying to get you to go to a meeting blah, blah, blah, and they will call your room if you don't sign up at the desk by the elevator. Terrible food, cheap, cheap drinks, like I said, would not go back.
Lovincostarica is offline  
Feb 16th, 2004, 10:12 AM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 42
Thanks for the info. We're leaning towards the Gala Beach Resort...any comments on that resort or how about the Barcelo Maya? Is the water rough throughout the Mayan Riveria or just at the Iberostar? This is sooo confusing...all we want is a great vacations!! Thanks again for your comments.

Susie
vac_summer is offline  
Feb 16th, 2004, 05:52 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 35
Stayed at the Barcelo August 2002 and the Palladium in 2003. Both were very nice places. The Barcelo has the best beach I've seen anywhere. Nice and calm. Lots of shade and chairs all over the place. Food was OK, not great. The Palladium had great food (buffet and speciality) and a great pool area. The beach is nice but there are a few coral areas. Still very good. Since we went in August, A/C was important to us. The buffet at the Barcelo is not a/c'd, the Palladium is. Rooms in both were excellent and the service outstanding.
Here's a link to TR's on both places and pics: http://www.ngcsu.edu/Academic/Bus_Go...xRiv/mrhom.htm

I can't give you any info on the other two places. Good luck.
nuggetboy is offline  
Feb 16th, 2004, 05:54 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 323
Hey, lovincostarica, which Iberostar were you referring to? Was it the Tucan?
katolb90 is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 09:23 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 42
Thanks again for your responses. What kind of people go to Barcellos and Palladium...small kids, teenagers, 20 year olds, etc. Is it a party place? The coral at the Palladium...can you walk in the water with no problem?

Susie
vac_summer is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 11:17 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 35
There were a lot of Europeans when were there at both places, so expect some topless women. The coral at the Palladium is not a problem. There's a small line of coral by the shore in one area and once past it, clear sand. There were two areas with no coral at all. If I had kids I'd just be sure to get a place away from the rough coral. There's plenty of chairs around. The Palladium is a very nice place.
nuggetboy is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 04:36 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 42
The pictures were BEAUTIFUL...The Palladium looks REALLY nice...thanks. Wish someone had pictures like that for The Gala Beach Resort Playacar and Iberostar Paraiso del Mar. We're looking for nice flat surf. Someone said the water was very rough and they didn't go in the water. Any more comments on that?

Thanks again for all your comments.

Susie
vac_summer is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 03:17 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 42
P.S.

Is this resort quiet or is it a party resort?

Susie
vac_summer is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 05:33 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 13
I definitely have to contradict lovingcostarica. IB Paraiso del Mar is fabulous. The pool is spectacular (waterfall) and you can always find a not crowded spot. We've stayed there twice and never had a problem FINDING an open restaurant. It's very clear. We are going again in June.
Amber02 is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 07:48 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 35
Susie,
There are no significant waves at either the Barcelo or the Palladium. Both of their beaches are protected by a reef. I would not call either place a party resort. Both have a mixture of couples and families.
nuggetboy is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 07:56 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 323
He never did say which Iberostar he was referring to did he? How long is the beach at the IB Paraiso del Mar? Looking for miles of nice continuous beach. Someone on this board stated that I should stay on the other side (south side) of PDC for miles of continuous beach.
katolb90 is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 09:12 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 18
The palladium is the best of the resorts.. the food is the best i have had at an all-inclusive resort. they also have a small adults only pool in the little jungle area with its own private bar...
towerlady is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 10:26 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,212
I stayed at Iberostar Paraiso 2 years ago in March. The beach is not long at all, though the pool is (and it's fabulous!). It was very windy at the beach, I think there was only day when you were allowed in the water because it was so rough. This was disappointing. The food at the buffet was pretty bad - there were not many options for people who like non-greasy / low-fat. The individual restaurants were better though it can be difficult to get reservations. The location is awful...it's too far from town! Playa Del Carmen was about 20 minutes away.

Most people seemed to be happy there though...those who like to sit by the pool & just eat and drink all day. But there wasn't much of anything else to keep you entertained (the highlight of every day was happy hour by the pool with a band playing). No singles, no nightlife at this resort.
suzanne is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 11:53 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 57
Hey Katolb90, it was the IB Parisio del Mar. I am just not thier type of target client I think. We really did not enjoy our stay there. It was too far from everything, I like to tour and do the activities while on vacation. I don't want to be trapped in a hotel. I learned my lesson, and have never been to another all inclusive since. I now live in Costa rica, as I like adventure.
Lets face it, hotels like this one are more for people who want to sit and drink, then move in and out of the sun, and sit and drink some more. While I do like to party, I would prefer taking the tours to the night clubs in Cancun, or to senor Frogs' and making a trip out of it, and we did those things, I just didn't like the long ride to get there, and on both occasions they announced that if we were from the Parisio, it was time for us to go if we wanted to use the bus we came up on. For me, there just wasn't much more offered by the hotel except places to sit and drink.
If people do go who want to travel a bit, we did the chichen itza loved it, we did the cenote diving, loved it, the bob was okay, we went fishing while there, I just give that an okay as compared to deep sea fishing in Costa rica, its not even in the same league. We also went to some garden thing that was wonderful, we saw jaguars on an island, you could release green sea turtles, thhey put on a show from all the providences in the evening....plus there were horsewomen, I hope I am saying that correctly, that put on a show at teh resteraunt in the complex, so we really enjoyed that, I wish I could remember the name of it. We did the bar tour, that was fun for one night, one activity thta was a total rip off was one we saw on e tv just before we left, the isla damas tour. We waited an hour in a bar for the boats to load, then we rode to the island, got off, and instead of being a wild party, it was really not fun. They sercved a horrible little buffet, as soon as we got done, they sat us all in chairs, put on a lame show, which involved us all waving white balloons, and then they said it was time to go, no party, no dancing, no nothing else. Also one day just outside the gate we met Cocoa a chimp who does tricks and flips you off, we got pics with her, and another day a guy was out there with lion cubs, so we held them and got pics of us holding them.
Like I said, I'm just not the client that these places cater to, its great for some people I guess, but not for us, and I learned that. If it helps I have been on 3 cruises, and hate cruises now as well. Its like being on one of these hotels, but not being able to tour, I felt trapped, and was soooo bored.
Lovincostarica is offline  
Feb 24th, 2004, 09:56 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 17
1st and formost...
Playa del carmen me & my wife didnt feel safe walking there in town, many
buildings were being worked on, construction etc..while going thru with my friend & his wife we felt harrassed and uncomfortable being in this slum of a town with all these guys wistling at our wives while going thru town. it wasnt pleasant or fun, it felt kinda dangerous & we never went back..
we went to cancun to barter cause of that bad experience.
Barcelo, Gala palladium & all the playacars are there.
We did stay at the paraiso on the beach
it was pleasant & comfortable with many amenaties we like more than we thought.
dont mind my (sp) if im not on top of things..
Theres 6 resaurants, 11 total if you do go to the lindo, which we indeed are going back to the lindo,since the paraiso was so appealing.In oct 2004
woo-hoo!
If you are in use of a relaxing, out of the ordianary vaca spot this is for you.
I work a stressful job & dont like a cancun type vaca, partylife etc..
its a place you can enjoy, relax, great service unreal lagoon pool, food is great. Coffee is at the restauant with a whole sha-bang of breakfast commonities, you name it, its there!
This place (IS) top notch, we went to aruba in 2002 & spent 3500 & didnt get the service we got at the paraiso.
example, we met a guy named olie at the
pool, we sat in a stool covered up to your waist in water & hung with him while the foreigners were blown off cause we tipped him & treated him with kindness..(mostly french people)
the 2nd day we were there we were at the pool, he saw us & ignored the other
rude traveleres, walked all the way around the pool to accomodate our drink needs with a nod. the walk was a good 70 yds. he had my drink, wifes, friends & his wifes drink in hand happily to see us, talk about relaxing?
puh-lease..
Do the Xel-Ha tour when you arrive get the tour pamphlet, we did the dolphin
excursion & all the other things they offered what a blast! mind you, i dont mind a 30 min ride while on vacation..it isnt disney folks!
the tours aren't not on top of you, its mexico!!!!!
we did go to the playa area cause of our ordeal with the townspeopl
(maggots) &
saw the other places, being dropped off from hotel there to hotel others were getting back & werent impressed with any of the other places kinda rundown if you saw it. The only other places i would suggest, i was impressed with the mayan palace & the adventura or the
xpu-ha palace. I have a friend who goes to the gala every year cause its smaller
than most resorts, he doesnt like a big
resort, so im sure thats another.
But for anyone to DOG the Iberostar, you gotta be there to live it.
It was a very very realxing & accomodating trip, i would not go back
for the 2nd year if it wasnt all that, id spend my dinero back to aruba, just add another grand to my itinerary.
It is worthy, some people are too dramatic on perfection, a vacation is mostly about relaxing & enjoying your surroundings, in this place you have it all bank on it.
2 years in a row should tell you i have the $ to go elsewhere, not disapointed at the least, i commend the service & all they offer.

If you dont like to be away from the highlife, go to CANCUN!!
(in reply to the last poster...)

My hats off to the resort. just remember they jump for 5-10 bucks tip a day! links to go by, my selling tool that got us there.. click the link below!

http://members.rogers.com/gmacpro3/
graydolphin is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 06:33 AM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,066
Different strokes for different folks, but I really don't think that bashing the town of Playa del Carmen is called for. It's a growing community, so yeah, there's lots of construction. Unsafe??? Oh, please. With all of the tourists that are wandering around?

Anyway, I'm glad the last poster enjoyed the resort where he stayed, but, please, let's not frighten other people from enjoying spending some time in town.

Jean in Iowa, heading to Playe del Carmen next week.
JeanH is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 07:14 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 73
Thanks for all the great info here. I'm looking at the Palladium, Barcelo Mayas and maybe the Sunscape Tulum. Any info on the last hotel? Also, I have gone to Apple Vacations website and they only offer me really bad flight times, is there a way around that?
Thanks for the help!
bmaring is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:32 PM.