Riviera Maya Suites in Playa del Carmen or....?

Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:55 PM
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Riviera Maya Suites in Playa del Carmen or....?

Hello fellow Fodorites,
My extended family takes a vacation each winter break; this year we are 20 people, in 5 family groups, ranging in age from 10-80. We like to have a kitchenette when possible and be as close as we can be to a beach.

Has anyone out there stayed at the Riviera Maya Suites? We would have privileges at Las Palapas, their sister property. However, it's hard to tell how far the beach really is. Also, I can't tell what that part of the ocean is like; shallow? rough? calm and blue?

If you have another suggestion, that'd be great, too.

Thanks!
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 05:39 PM
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We've stayed in various condos right on the beach in Akumal (Half Moon Bay). Full kitchens in all of them. some with pools for the complex.

Vista Del Mar was good, La Sirena was another but beach entry can be rocky in parts (just walk along the beach if this bothers you).
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Old Sep 23rd, 2014, 06:18 AM
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I've never stayed at this property, but I somewhat know that area of PDC. It is the north end of Playa, which is the quieter, newer part of town. For some reason, it's popular with Italians. It would be my neghborhood of preference in PDC. As for the beach, this part of Playa generally has a nicer, wider beach, although storms can change things. The very popular Mamita's beach club is nearby. The property is about a block or two to the beach. The water in Playa is generally quite calm and strikingly turquiose. Windy days can kick up a small surf with 1-2' waves. If I were to stay in
PDC, Riviera Maya Suites would be one of my preferred choices based on location.
The locogringo.com website has lots of info on this whole area.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2014, 01:51 PM
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Not having been to anyone of these hotels as a guest, I know exactly where they are and have seen the lobby's of both.
Riviera Maya suites is one block from 5th Ave. and about 2 blocks from the beach, and the Palapas is right on the beach.
Honestly, Maya Suites is a great location and a short 10 minute walk to the very popular beach in the area. The entrance to the Mamitas Beach is between two beach clubs, the Mamitas and the Kool beach club. You would then turn left and walk over on the beach to the Palapas area... anyway you will get very familiar with the location in no time flat. The water is turquoise blue and the sand is powdery white. The beach is very wide and very safe for all. Lots of action. You would be better off to frequent the Palapas area as you would have access to the facilities, whereas you would need to pay for a chair and services and washrooms at the two beach clubs.
I have not dought that you will have the best of times in the northern end (Italian section)of La Quinta where shops, restaurants and just about anything you care to see. If you have a kitchen, then you are about 8 blocks to the supermarket called Mega and 10 blocks over to Wal-Mart. Absolutly no need for a car or taxi in this location.
Great choice for a crowd your size !!
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Old Sep 29th, 2014, 04:18 PM
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thanks so much, especially rohelio, for your thoughtful replies! it's kind of funny to be staying in the italian section of a mexican paradise, but...when in rome, lol.
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Old Sep 29th, 2014, 05:13 PM
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I believe it is called the Italian section because of the Italian restaurants and Italian owners of several hotels in the area, but rest assured, you are in Mexico as the culture, behaviour and language is unmistakenly Mexican. Great location known for it being clean, safe and lots of fun !
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Old Sep 30th, 2014, 01:54 PM
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The besach near Las Palapas is very good. The Caribbean Sea in PDC is normally calm, so it is a good choice for your stay. You will be able to take advantage of the very good selection of restaurants and stores on 5th Avenue. It seems you got a good deal!
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Old Sep 30th, 2014, 04:58 PM
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some relatives are complaining (already) that the beach is too far, but i'll reassure them based on the high praise everyone has for las palapas and that part of the beach.

it's my privilege to plan this trip each year! we're usually 27 people, we've done a cruise (mixed reviews), two all-inclusives in ixtapa and the DR (mixed reviews), and 3 straight years in negril, jamaica. we had the perfect set-up, but people want a change of pace! we're arranging for a chef to cook family-style dinners for us, because dinner together is the one rule, and we figure we'll eat more authentically. going out with 20+ people is tough for restaurants, a nightmare for us, and an extra bill each night.

any top recommendations for lunch?

i do this for about $1300 per person, including airfare. then i get to charge it, accrue the miles, and travel again!
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