Grand Riviera Princess All Suites and Spa Resort reviews

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating

4.0 Very Good

  • Cleanliness 4.5
  • Location 4.0
  • Rooms 4.0
  • Service 4.0
  • Value 4.0

12956 TripAdvisor reviews

TripAdvisor users rated this property 4 out of 5

Good

783Diane (Birmingham, United Kingdom) on Jul 03, 2024

Staff all very friendly and happy to help. Food fine. Themed restaurants good especially Tepanyski Misu, Seafood & the Mexican were our favourites. Rooms cleaned daily to a goid standard but a little dated. Big rooms too. Beach and pools were great. Sea not so good as sea weed issued making in dark and smelly. Few storms which haven’t helped the sea but managed to dodge bad weather only 1 bad day out of 11 days. Hotel runs a shuttle bus taxi service to Port del Carmen. We got the 12.00 one but you have to get this on sunset side of the hotel lobby. There is a charge of 4 dollars p/p each way. But made a change to get out.

TripAdvisor users rated this property 2 out of 5

Disappointing

Capt_Skunkbeard (Scotland, United Kingdom) on Jul 02, 2024

Cutting the chase, in summary, would not return to this resort. It has some redeeming features but overall, a disappointing experience. Location (8/10), a fairly short transfer from Airport so no issues there – they do love a speedbump in those parts though. A taxi from hotel to Playa Del Carmen is a set fare MX$400 each way (about £18GBP for 4 people). Taxis in town are plentiful and easy to find, well worth visiting. Hotel and grounds (7/10): A fairly large complex with some nice grounds and loads of wildlife which often offers some of the best entertainment during the day, kids will love it. Top-tip, do not leave your bag lying around pool, especially if there’s food in there, Coatis will sniff it out and pinch it. For those not able or willing to walk the length of the resort there is a golf-cart service, we found them few and far between so never used it. Takes a little bit of exploring to find out where everything is, which is fun, but better signage would have been handy. Grounds are generally well maintained. Pools are ok, there’s plenty to choose from, shallow depths with a couple of swim-up bars (will come to them later). Plenty of sunbeds, they start getting reserved around 6.30am. There are a few cabanas and shaded areas but most of the beds have no shade, this could be a problem as the sun (we only got 3 or 4 days worth) can be very strong. The usual towel token system is in operation, you get one each at check-in and exchange for one towel at the central towel cabana. Don't lose them, they'll charge you. WORD OF CAUTION, we visited end-June and had best part of 2 wks of rain – the hotel becomes fairly treacherous in terms of slip hazards during this time, despite staff’s best efforts to clear flooding – be careful, very, very slippy, we saw quite a few fresh plaster casts on arms and legs during our visit. Beach is ok, usual amounts of sargassum (which stinks) although hotel does not seem very efficient at clearing it, certainly compared the efforts we saw at another (RIU) hotel on a previous visit to Mexico. Water was very murky, perhaps due to the stormy conditions. There’s a bar at the beach and a snack bar (similar service issues as below). Wi-Fi is very poor, extremely slow and patchy, this is an issue and the worst I’ve experienced at any hotel. There is an option to ‘upgrade’ to faster Wi-Fi, but it’ll cost you. Some good evening entertainment which is worth checking out but be quick as seating can be tricky to find. Some of the daytime pool entertainment, in particular twerking and grinding contests and games which, given there are young families staying, went a little bit too far, especially when participants had a skinful to drink. Rooms (5/10): We had two junior suites. Plus points, very spacious, good sized balcony, comfortable bed, free safe. Negative points, rooms are in dire need of a refurb, they’ve been well used, and it shows. Our bedding, pillows and cushions in particular reeked of damp, eventually got these changed. There’s not a lot of storage space in the rooms. Only one small bin, which was next to toilet. Shower was good, if a little rickety. We had the spa bath but never used it, it looked dirty. Free mini-bar was well stocked with beers, soft drinks and water. English TV channels are limited. Room servicing was absolutely the bare minimum, compared to other hotels and did not supply fresh towels on a couple of occasions. Service (4/10): Mostly sub-par. Check-in experience was chronically slow and of the few interactions with desk staff during the holiday they ranged from helpful (changing money) to surly and not interested (when requesting first aid). Restaurant service varies, breakfast was good and once we found the ‘snack riviera’ restaurant things were much better – way quieter, closer and with better service (Lorenzo deserves a special mention here, he was great 10/10). We tend to take breakfast early, 7am, which is opening time and there were only ever half a dozen other guests there. On a few occasions we found service to be quite poor, particular in ‘steak house riviera’. Nothing some proper training wouldn’t fix (see Dubai hotels for how to get this right). Service at swim-up and pool bars is highly variable. They are supposed to open at 10am, but more often than not, staff start getting the bar ready at 10am and not serving drinks for some time after (we sat for 20mins on a couple of occasions by which time large queues had formed) – bars should really be prepared and ready to go at 10am. The other big service issue is one of resourcing, all bars are under-staffed, in particular the pool bars with, more often than not, only one server working at a time, even when the queues are huge. In general, asking for anything out of the ordinary anywhere in the hotel seems to be a hassle (putting a human on Mars easier than changing TV channel in sports bar) and the default position for most things is ‘go to reception’, which is a real pain as its often miles away from where you are. Food (3/10): Probably the low point. Tried a few a la carte restaurants, which you need to book by installing the Princess App on your phone, booking a couple of days ahead. The app is rubbish, exacerbated by the very ropey WIFI throughout. We had one good a la carte meal, in the Miso Thai restaurant, second visit meal was cold. We tried most of the restaurants, not expecting much, you know how these all-inclusive setups work, and were disappointed with all of them. Notable mentions to the Italian restaurant (Mamma Mia) for serving undercooked (AKA almost raw) pizzas which could have been really good with an extra 5mins in the oven. Mention also goes to riviera steak house for not knowing how to cook a steak, that said, the meat is very poor quality, t-bones are less than 1cm thick and an oxtail soup which was nothing short of a bowl of grease, pretty rank. Mention to the Mexican (La Hacienda) which, ironically served greasy, unpleasant dishes although they will try to upsell you tequila / cocktails at exorbitant prices, be careful to check before you buy, a couple of Don Julio’s and you’ll be 40 quid down before you know it. Buffet restaurants have a decent selection of international dishes, nothing stands out, most greasy and nearly all cold. (That’ll be why there’s a microwave in the food hall). Cakes and desserts, of which there is a decent selection, bizarrely all taste the same. Service – highly variable, but generally poor. Training required. Food – not good, comparing to competition in the region, well below average, often cold. Not all stocked drinks included in all-inclusive, be sure to check first. Hotel – lovely complex, decent beach, great wildlife, tired rooms desperately in need of refurb. Overall, not really a 5-star experience. I would say 3-star on account of service/food and 4-star on surroundings/amenities. Will not return and sadly cannot recommend.

TripAdvisor users rated this property 5 out of 5

Ignore the rubbish reviews. You'll love it.

robj707 (Ferndown, United Kingdom) on Jul 02, 2024

Where do I start. Please please please ignore all those reviews complaining of minor issues. We very nearly didn't book this place because of the less than favourable reviews. I can only assume those reviews came from people who normally stay at the Ritz. This place is huge, absolutely massive. The gardens and grounds are absolutely immaculate. The rooms are absolutely lovely. Yes I am sure I could find a scuff mark if I looked or a damaged tile in the bathroom if I scrutinized the place but the overall impression upon entering the rooms are beautiful, clean, modern and huge. Food is lovely. One of the reasons we nearly didn't book here was because we saw some reviews saying you could never eat at the A la Cartes. Nonsense. Just use the App and go on just after 6 and you'll have no problem. In 14 days we ate at them all and some of them twice. We found the French (Le Fleur) and Italian the best as well as the Grill. These had a lovely atmosphere with bread brought to your table etc and in the case of Le Fleur, a pianist. We did find the seafood (las Ochas) and the Swiss fondue place to be not quite as good as there didn't seem to be such an atmosphere, possibly because these were in the large rooms used as buffets near the pools during the day. Entertainment was very good in a massive theatre. We didn't see too much as we tended to eat at about 8. Perhaps it might be better if the entertainment started at 9 instead of 8.30. Bars and drinks were fine. Queues were minimal and drinks were lovely. Staff everywhere were courteous and seemed, in the main, to be happy. An army of cleaners constantly polishes the vast expanses of marble flooring and keep the hotel very very clean. Guests all seemed to get along very easily with a nice mixture of Brits, Americans, Canadians, Mexicans etc. We made very good friends with families from Myrtle Beach and Kamloops which we found fascinating. From the moment you arrive at the amazing reception area you'll have an amazing holiday. Yes you could probably get more luxury elsewhere but for the money we paid this place was super impressive and ticked all the boxes. One minor thing; I probably wouldn't bother with Platinum. We met several people with platinum and all said it really wasn't worth the extra.

TripAdvisor users rated this property 3 out of 5

Platinum upgrade not worth it.

Ruby R on Jul 01, 2024

Front Desk Attendant - Verania Made us wait for service by calling guests who had arrived later before us. - She did not apologize for making us wait by calling clients who arrived after us (apparently she already knew them, we could have understood if she had apologized or at least thanked us for waiting, which she did not). - She told us that our requested room was not available and that we would have to stay in another room (she did not apologize. I understand that perhaps that this could be out of her hands, but in other hotels or resorts the staff offers you solutions, such as moving you to the room you requested the next day or they offer you send some amenities to the room.) - Upon insistence, she was able to secure us a room in another section of the resort - She failed to show empathy even though we mentioned it was our honeymoon. Not even a congratulations. Because of this we felt the resort made no effort to celebrate this milestone event with us. - Overall, this agent really made us feel quite unappreciated. Front Desk Attendant - Adahil - The best and only good platinum front desk agent. - He helped us fill out a review claim, although unfortunately, the platinum concierge did nothing to compensate us for our negative experience - He was very attentive whenever we had a question Concierge attendant - Jesus - Definitely the best customer service we received at the resort - Friendly and always showed a genuine interest to help. - He even anticipates guest’s needs and makes sure they understand everything. - Provided suggestions for everything like, restaurants, activities, wines, jewelry and even video games. Recommending activities or restaurants we hadn't thought of. - Always in a very good mood and shows a lot of patience so you ask him the same thing many times. Shuttle Driver - Martin (AKA Pitbull) - Always polite and in very good spirits. Server at Le Flour restaurant - Luis Quesada Server at Mamma Mia restaurant - Miguel Provided top notch service, were very informed about the menu and helped make our dining experience a pleasant one. Overall comments: I have doubts about whether to return to this resort. The check-in was quite unpleasant, and for this I give them 4 and not 5. but I appreciate that other members of the staff knew how to make our stay a better experience. The hotel is very beautiful and the restaurants are really authentic and of very high quality. Most of the staff are very attentive and spoke fluent English. The food was excellent and the restaurants really captured the authentic taste of the cultures they represented. We felt that they failed to show any consideration for our reason for visiting, i.e. our honeymoon. And as such, would recommend against visiting for anyone who is celebrating an important date since they apparently do not prepare anything special for birthdays, anniversaries or similar events (we mentioned this to the front desk). We found the staff in the non-platinum zone to be more attentive than in the platinum zone, I don't feel that it is worth paying more for a lower quality service, or maybe they should move your best staff to that zone. The only real benefit of platinum that we found was the complimentary room service. Otherwise we felt we would hav been content in the less expensive area of the resort. I never received the hotel feedback survey which several staff members told us we would receive. I would hazard a guess that they deleted our email because we had already submitted a complaint and they wanted to avoid a bad review (which is why it's a 3 and not a 4).

TripAdvisor users rated this property 4 out of 5

Overall a great vacation

Rosanne K on Jun 29, 2024

My teen daughter and I spent a week at the resort. Overall we had a great time despite it raining every day. There were a number of things we loved about the resort, including the beautiful grounds, abundant pools and friendly staff. In particular, Isaac Lopez at the Snack Riviera was outstanding. We loved having breakfast there beside the big windows that looked onto one of the pools. Isaac was so friendly and would get our drink orders ready the moment he saw us enter the restaurant. The resort does a great job of planning a variety of activities for the day and the gym is spacious and clean. The pools were awesome, and we loved having a variety in which ones to visit. If you are a foodie and enjoy leisurely dinners out this might not be the resort for you. There are no a la carte lunch options (other than a sports bar), no outdoor patios, and the dinners at the a la carte restaurants feel rushed. We tried the Mexican, Thai, Italian and French. The Mexican was disappointing, the Thai was okay, but the Italian and French were really good. The staff were always wonderful, but you can tell that they need you in and out in an hour. We went to the buffet for lunch a couple times, but we mostly just visited the taco cart. We did like the ease of booking the dinners through the app and the fact that you could only book three days in advance. This meant that we were able to find a time slot for every night except the night we arrived. On another note, when we checked in, we were asked if we wanted to upgrade to a platinum room for an extra $150 CAD (there was no extra charge for my daughter since she was underage). The woman at reception quickly ran through the list of benefits and I mostly agreed since it included a room upgrade. I was a little surprised when we entered the room and found it was a very standard and dated room with two beds and a small sitting area. It turns out the only room upgrade was the tub in the bathroom, which I wouldn't have used since the jets were discoloured. After a trip to the front desk at the platinum building (not our building) it was explained to me that what we were sold an upgrade to platinum "benefits" and not a platinum room. This was a little disappointing since I had confirmed with reception that it would mean a more spacious room, but for the price we decided to keep it anyway. The benefits included: - access to the platinum area on the beach with waiter service for drinks (This was by far the best benefit for us. We loved the comfy lounge chairs and thatched umbrellas) - access to a pool for platinum guests only (the pool was incredibly small relative to the other pools so we never visited) - upgraded alcohol, e.g. international (maybe this was a benefit if you drank beer, but I was always served the same house wine with dinner and cocktails with the same bottle of tequila and rum as everyone else) - free room service (this came in handy a couple times when it was rainy heavily) Overall, I don't think platinum "benefits" would have been worth it if my daughter hadn't been free, but we did enjoy the platinum area at the beach. I think if you prioritize swimming pools and a spacious resort, this is a great option. If you are looking for high end meals and a la carte lunches, there are likely better resorts.

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