El Dorado Casitas Royale, by Karisma one of Conde Nast Traveler Readers' Top 100 Hotels in the World and an AAA Four Diamond Resort, is the pinnacle of romantic seaside luxury. Nestled along the beach, El Dorado Casitas Royale by Karisma is an adults-only resort designed for romance.
This place is Amazing! We have so many friends and family with memberships we gave it a go. We, had been asked or pressed, would also be members. Not a pushy sale! Clemente & Isaac made our week so amazing! Like I told Clemente +X! Go, just Go! I Promise you will love it! This place is quite, amazing and the place to go for a RELAXING vacation! Not your party place, but definitely Fun!
Not a 5 star experience.
Sep 10, 2023
We stay in Rivera Maya at least once a year at an all inclusive adults only 4-5 star place for the last 10 plus years. We came here to celebrate our 10th anniversary.
The grounds are well kept and very nice.
We upgraded from Royal to the Casitas. They put us in building 29 only to call us within 30 minutes of arriving telling us that we needed to move halfway through the week. Not the end of the world, but the fiasco gets stupid with time....
The next day we go to to our casitas "front desk" and we agreed on another room and they would throw in a bottle of wine for our trouble. We signed a paper and went on about our day. We moved and the room was similar but the bathroom was quite a bit smaller in 25 than 29.
The week goes by, no wine. On Thursday it was our anniversary, no wine. So went to ask and they told us they would check and call us...so we waited in our room for about an hour back and forth between phone calls with them trying to figure out what happened. According to them, they left the wine in our old room "before" we left. They went so far as to tell us they took a photo of this wine in our room.
So Friday, our last full day my husband calls again and they continued to say they had a photo. So at this point we were just annoyed by this issue because its an all inclusive resort and who would think a 5 dollar bottle of wine you can order at the bar is such a fiasco. We went back to the front desk to ask to see this supposed photo, which not even the manager could produce. She kept saying they put a "special" bottle of wine in our room in the fridge. Which wine bottles will NOT fit in the fridge. Regardless it was just irritating. We ended up taking the wine home as we didn't even have time to enjoy it at the resort. It just makes no sense why they would argue with us...I had even said that the house wine was fine, so I just can't wrap my head around why this became such an issue.
Our other biggest criticism for this resort is the FOOD. For a resort that says "Gourmet" in the name, the food was far from it. We stayed at El Dorado Seaside a few years ago before COVID and we thought their food was much better. Their buffet was also larger with a better variety. The main breakfast buffet by the lobby was a sad comparison to several other resorts we have been to in the area. You'll find something to eat, but again its pretty limited in comparison for a 5 star "gourmet" resort. The restaurants were also mediocre at best, Italian was the best, Asian wasn't bad but nothing amazing. Even the Mexican food they had was sad, half the time the guacamole was old or funky tasting, and then they would usually have only chilaquiles, fried rolled tacos, and fried empanadas, or some Yucatan tamales. Limited variety just everywhere. The only time we saw ceviche for the "regular customers" was on Mexican Fiesta night. Most other resorts have it on menus or at the lunch buffets. ROOM SERVICE - Not horrible for room service. Still would not call it gourmet at all.
BEACH - If you love the beach you won't like this place. There is a tiny spot near the presidential casitas that you can get into the water about 10 feet in...linear. If you are on the royal side there is a bit bigger spot on the south side from straight were the main pool is located. The concrete crap they put in the water is an eye sore...they claim its for the critters but I think that is a cover story as an excuse for an ugly background.
Casitas - They are nice large rooms, not sure if it is worth the upgrade to be honest, but we did not see the royal rooms to compare properly. Each casita cluster has their own pool and bartender.
NIGHTLIFE - Well in comparison again it's very limited. They have a couple shows starting at 8:30, then afterwards you can party at Guacamayas, which is a full on outdoor bar. The biggest complaint about that is the heat. Obviously outdoor bars are limited to the mercy of mother nature, but a few nights you just sweat without moving. They really could use a TON more fans to at least circulate air because the wind from the beach stops at the theatre and becomes hot and stale in the bar area. I suppose it depends on the crowd for nightlife, but mostly it dies down early. 11 30 one night, and the other two we closed it down by 1am and most people had already popped smoke. They have a bar in the lobby that is supposed to be open till one but it is a lounge more than anything, great AC, boring and empty.
ESPRESSO - So another annoyance which you may feel is stupid, but again having many resort experiences I feel a 4-5 star resort should be well prepared on all aspects. They had espresso machines at the larger bars, but HOW ARE THEY ALL BROKEN!? (3 of 4 bars had no working machine at royal) We had to go to the kids side one day where they actually had a real espresso machine to get espresso with baileys. The other bars had the instant espresso machines which is fine, but they seemed to all be broken down. I'd recommend them having at least premade espresso in the fridge for drinks, or instant packets. Something at least at all the bars. Then finding baileys on top of that was a struggle....
Overall I would not recommend this resort. Go to Seaside if you want to stay with El Dorado. If not there are tons of other resorts with much better food, customer service, and amenities. (Valentine, Sandos Caracol) Pretty much everywhere had better food than this resort. They have no business calling their food gourmet. Staff overall was nice, except having to argue with the front desk about cheap included wine.
We would not return.