Riu Santa Fe Hotel

4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 Stars

23453 Cabo San Lucas B.C.S , Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur, 23410, Mexico

3 Reviews

Hotel Riu Santa Fe
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Satisfaction Very Good
Very Good

Value Score Average Value

Similarly priced and rated as other 4.5 star hotels

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Good For Couples
  • Families72
  • Couples76
  • Solo69
  • Business58



    People become infected with salmonella by swallowing the bacterium. This can happen from eating contaminated food that has not been completely cooked, or has been contaminated after preparation. Salmonella can also be spread from person to person when an infected individual does not thoroughly wash his or her hands after using the toilet.

    This is my first time writing a Review.....

    i know its late on this Review. But i have to let people know what my experience was at this resort. To be careful on what you eat here!

    I had a beautiful exerperience here. the resort is beautiful. The service is great. But who would ever thing that i would get sick off the food here.

    i stayed here for 7 days and the last day i ate at the buffet a plate of a variety of seafood and within 20 minutes broke out in a rash. Keep in mind i am not allergic to seafood. Which is my favorite food.
    i went to the front desk and told them that i have a red rash and itching all over my body and feel sick. They advise me to go to my room and they would have a doctor right away. Which they did. The doctor was there within 20 minutes. He gave me a shot of 1gram of Benadryl for allergys. he said i had symptoms to allergys. i told him that i have eaten seafood all my life and have never had an allergy. Well he gave me the shot. WHICH COST ME $300 THAT I PAID!!!

    The following day i went to complain about how much i paid for the shot and i wanted them to reinburse me for the money that i paid. being that it was there fault! They responded that i needed to email them with my complaint.... I spoke to several managers and they all directed me to email the resort.....

    i came back, had blood work done. Only to find out that i had picked an infection from there food...

    i have traveled to many places and i have never gotten sick from the food till i came here. its a wakeup call to consider what i eat now if i travel to a resort now. And because if this i am now scare to travel and eat food at any resort.

    i called and spoke to many supervisor and they all directed me to email my complaint.

    My stay here was beautiful and i enjoyed my self up until the last day that i became sick off the food......

    Please be careful here with the foooood.......because if you get sick you will have to pay for medication that is very expensive. And they will just give you the runaround when it comes to geting your money back for all the doctor fees that are so costly.

    till this day i still have digestive problems, ever since i came here. The doctor said i picked up this infection from a worker not washing his had after going to the restroom and then came back to handle the food i ate!!! is that grossssss

    Disappointed!! because up until that moment everything was beautiful and perfect. it was the perfect vacation. But in the end a nightmare of the after math!

    The Supervisor didnt care.... they just give you the run around to email....

  • Horrible safety issues at this resort. BE CAREFUL!


    Horrible safety issues at this resort. BE CAREFUL!!

    We arrived at this hotel as a family, excited for our vacation. First night went well, the next day all the horror started. We booked excursions as a family to enjoy (which we ended up canceling), right after that we all went into the pool facing the ocean. Not even 5 minutes passed and an umbrella took off with the wind and hit my dad square in the head while he was in the pool. There was a round 4 1/2 inch solid piece which hit him on the top of the head. He immediately grabbed his head and neck and was in and out of consciousness. I immediately altered the staff which had no idea what to do... Of the 5 of 6 staff members around not one was trained on emergency procedures. All they wanted to do was bring a weal chair and move him to the lobby so that it did not cause a scene. He clearly had a neck injury and they wanted to move him in a weal char! Unacceptable! We asked for a doctor and an ambulance and they continued to insist we bring him to the lobby.

    Finally after 20 min, other guests had gathered around a few of which were nurses and firefighters from North America. Together we used a flat pool chair and carefully lied him down then lifted him out of the water to safety. One guest (also a firefighter) then with his hands secured my dad's neck. None of the hotel staff helped, they just watched. I then asked for the manager, after she arrived she was not very helpful either. 45 min after this incident happened, the onsite doctor arrived and assessed the situation and then authorized an ambulance. 1 hour after the incident happened the ambulance arrived. EMS had issues getting the back board and neck brace secured. The doctor had to take over and do it.

    The ambulance could only take one of us with them to the hospital. When my mother asked if the hotel would take her and my brother the manager told us to take a cab!!! Another guest who was watching all of this unfold offered a ride as he had rented a car.

    Finally a full afternoon and evening later, with a $6,500 USD we returned to the hotel. My dad had a neck brace on and pain killers for the neck / head pain. The doctors said he had suffered an over extension of the of the vertebrae as well as a concussion. They also said he had a compression on his C6 vertebrae which was preexisting, however he has never been injured there before. The hotel management was not the least bit concerned with what happened. It was like they did not even care that someone got injured due to negligence on behalf of the hotel.

    I asked the hotel manager what she was going to do about the umbrellas (none of them were secured, in fact another went flying 5 min after my dad got injured and nearly hit another individual, one also nearly missed a 5 year old girl prior to). She responded that she will have to talk with the manager in Cancun and then decided what to do.. She also said that if a decision was made action would not happen anytime soon.

    Couple days after the incident i walked around with my camera and took a video of all the umbrellas, some had pins, but were rusted open, others had worn out threads. Some were missing pins altogether. we found one which was wedged down with a twig and another with paper folded up. Out of all the umbrellas only one was secured and that was because a guest who was sitting there secured it. The hotel staff watched as i went around to all the umbrellas. The next day someone went around with a drill and screwed all them down to the base... .

    A few days after the incident the hotel offered us a dinner for 4 at the buffet next door at the Riu Palace. We declined as we found that insulting, they can do better. We have a buffet at our hotel as well.

    The day before we were leaving the hotel manager said she could offer us a 7 day stay to be used within a year, not including flight and we would have to sign a release. We declined that as well. They can again do better. Our entire vacation was ruined! My dad was and still is in a neck brace, we were very limited to what we could do...

    They refused to pay the hospital bill as our insurance would cover it. If our insurance covers it, it will result in increased premiums. Furthermore, since its group insurance, it will increase for everyone who is part of that group.

    A few things to remember about this hotel:

    1) the staff is not trained on how to respond to any medical emergency
    2) no medical equipment on site
    3) no back board on site
    4) no life guard on site
    5) huge language barrier

    As a potential traveler, whatever you decide, please be careful as you do not want to be hurt in this hotel or country.

    On a side note, we had cockroaches and bugs in our room. Bugs ended up in our luggage. We had to get the room and luggage sprayed while we were there.

    Unique Quality: The hotel itself is very beautiful; the thing you have to ask yourself is what would happen if you got seriously injured while you were down there...

  • Not Bad.........Not the Best.......


    Had a f*cking blast........except for one thing THERE WAS NOT 24 HOUR ROOM SERVICE........as a matter of fact.........there was no room service at all and the 24 hour bar that has food........is in the boonies and doesn't really have any food.........well, they have some if you're lucky.......but they don't re-stock so if it runs out your screwed. Not really 24 hour food bar at all.

    Staff was slow if you called to request anything be brought to the room. Pillow......soap.....matches.....bellboy to pick up luggage, etc. It would require at least three calls and about an hour's time or so before they decide to show up.

    You need reservations for the restaurants on the hotel grounds. You need to get up at 7 am and stand in a long line with other folks to make reservations at the concierge desk. You will take whatever reservations for whatever restaurant is available at whatever timeslot they give you. You can only make reservations for 2 days at a time.......one for same day (which will be a bllsh*t reservation at 9pm in a sh*tty restaurant and one extra reservation for the next day ONLY! Gee.......don't remember that in the description of the hotel........

    Liquor on-site sucks ass........they don't know how to make any drinks other than house specials which include tons of sugar and the tiniest splash of the cheapest generic liquor. You literally have to drink for several hours to catch a small buzz.

    Weather was f*cking freezing!

    However.........I had the best f*cking time EVER.........I met tons of great people and felt like I went with a whole group of friends. I partied in the City and had tons and tons of fun. Great f*cking time.........GRRRRRRRRRREAT!

    Loved, loved, loved the bartenders.......and the security guards at the bars...........they are wonderful and friendly and my crew and I absolutely had a blast. I eventually found a secret stash of decent tequila from one of the bartenders and was eventually able to get a good buzz without consuming eight pounds of sugary drinks with splashes of generic water down liquor.

    Hotel was clean. Buffet staff are nice and very attentive. Restaurant staff are slow........but they're busy and running a tight ship.......still......rather inattentive and forgetful when asked for something.

    All in all it was a good time. Had it not been for the bartenders and all the wonderful party people I hung out with the trip would have kinda sucked.

    Oh yeah........and the quality of the food at the buffets was pretty good considering it was an all-inclusive resort.

    Unique Quality: No jaccuzi's..........

More about Riu Santa Fe Hotel

Riu Santa Fe and it's Growing Pains

by TripAdvisor Member Benbas

We stayed at the new RIU SANTA FE from November 24-December 8,2007. When we booked this resort we were prepared for "surprises" since it was just opened . We have seen improvement on our 2nd week. It is indeed growing for the better.

When we checked in on Nov. 24, we did not encounter any problems. There was a table assigned to check in and obtain your keys. Our room was ready, so after we got our keys, we proceeded to our room. Prior to coming to RIU SANTA FE, I sent an e-mail requesting a room on the ground floor,near the main buffett and near the main lobby- and the room that was assigned to us was definitely near all these buildings I requested.

The meals at Baja California Buffett was good...they have stations for Mexican,Pasta,Pizza and international food everynight. They serve fish every lunch and dinner which was good. There are a variety of fresh fruits at all meals. I agree that the food becomes repetitive especially if you stay for 2 weeks. . Lunch is served in 2 restaurants-one by the beach Restaurante Torote and by the other pool Las Mission. There are supossedly 4 a-la-carte dining but in our two weeks we only tried the Torote Steak house twice. We tried the Caruso-Italian but the food was just OK. We looked at the menu of the Asian restaurant, and then we asked ourselves ...WHY would we want to eat in a chinese restaurant in Mexico when we have the BEST CHINESE FOOD here in Toronto. NO ONE will get hungry here at RIU SANTA FE...they have a lot of selection for you to choose...unless you are a GOURMET IRON CHEF that there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING PALATABLE TO YOUR TASTE...then you'll starve or just go home.

The pools are beautiful...they have 2....one is like an infinity pool and it is located at the beachfront.RIU Santa Fe has a beautiful backdrop of a setting....you can see the sunrise and the sunset and you can also watch cruise ships come in and go. It was indeed cold on our first week...the pool was not heated. On our second week it wasn't too bad. There were 2 swim-up bars at this pool. and another swim up bar in the other pool.

SERVICE at the RIU SANTA FE was EXCELLENT....every one tried their very best to please the guests....but of course there are always SOMEONE who will NEVER BE PLEASED. YES, the waiters and the waitresses most of them are new to RIU SANTA FE and some do not speak English. We found that if you take your time and speak slowly with a lot of hand gestures most of them understand what you're asking. Remember they are NOT ALL educated. In our 2 weeks, I have mingled with a lot of the RIU employees from the front desk to the bar tenders, to all the waiters and waitresses, to the room housekeepers and of course to the front desk and animation team . There was NOTHING that I have asked for that was not given They have all been very helpful and caring.

I had one complaint in our 2 weeks stay and that complaint was IMMEDIATELY handled,looked after and resolved by Javier Fernandez Sub-director of the RIU SANTA FE in one day. Now, that's IMPRESSIVE.

We had a wonderful 2 weeks at the RIU SANTA FE. And YES they have a lot of issues to deal with as any NEW BUSINESS and in this case RESORT to deal with.

REMEMBER RIU SANTA FE was opened NOV. 9, 2007. Go back and try it again next year. They will have their "growing pains"

A Wonderful Experience at the new Riu Santa Fe 12/9 - 12/14/07

by TripAdvisor Member dkfolsom

We booked our trip through Mexicana airlines prior to the opening of the resort so really didn't know what to expect. This was our first "all inclusive" and when the reviews started coming in we almost were hesitate to even go. But are we glad we did.
Airport transfer by Terramar went smooth and then we arrived to the Riu Santa Fe. A nice welcome and a beautiful lobby. Check-in was quick and based on other reviews, we decided to take our own luggage (we just had carry on) through the resort and to the furthest Bldg 7 with a partial ocean view room. A little bit of a walk to get to ocean front bldg of the resort, but for us that was O.K. Might not be the best location for people who have physical challenges and need to be more center to the resort happenings.

ROOM: Absolutely gorgeous. Furnished and decorated in rich wood tones. Granite is used for countertops in bar and bath area. The shower/bathtub combo caters to everyone. Our room had beautiful view of ocean and hills. You know the maid(s) really appreciate the $2 U.S ttp we left daily in our room. They make it even more special to let you know just how much.

DINING: The breakfast buffet is served at the main "Baja" restaurant. Choices abound, and the popular cooked to order omelets, For specialty restaurants that are open any given night, reservations must be made at around 11 am daily. But don't worry if your schedule doesn't allow you to get a spot. The main "Baja" dining area also serves dinner nightly and has so many choices to satisfy the pallet. I am a vegetarian and I was completey happy with all that it had to offer. The staff works hard to put on a great spread. Lunch buffets are served in two other areas of the resort with many choices as well. No one should go hungry at this resort. Although we were not effected, the only recommendation based on comments with people we meant was to somehow eliminate the 1-1/2 hour gaps between the meals. We felt this could be a possibility because the meals are already staggered between the different restaurants. Just a thought. One other recommendation. Perhaps adding bathroom facilities closer to the swim up bars where many congregate, if you know what we mean.

EMPLOYEES: Throughout the resort, no matter what their job was, they are friendly, helpful and work extremely hard. Although it is indicated that all gratuities are included when staying at this resort , employee wages are different and $1 - $2 dollars here and there really makes a difference. We took $50 ones and spread them out over our 6 day stay. Just something to consider.

We walked up the beach to the Cabo San Lucas marina. (a good walk, not short, but manageable for those who like to walk). We went on the Pez Gato snorkeling tour. A great crew and a fun time. Even saw whales who breached for us. All of us were in awe. Highly recommend this tour.

We do not live in a perfect world, but our stay at this Riu is one that will always hold wonderful memories for us. They made our first time in Cabo a truly special one. Just go and relax and enjoy all that it has to offer.

Great Stay at Riu Sante Fe

by TripAdvisor Member trishtogo

We were hesitant about the Riu Sante Fe after reading some bad reviews, but then some good ones started coming in we relaxed and went with a new attitude. It was great! This was our first time to Cabo and we were not disappointed. We loved the different geography of the area with mountains, cactus, palm trees and impressive rock formations.
Arrived Saturday afternoon about 12:30. Customs was a breeze, avoided timeshare people and met up with Funjet’s rep Epic Tours for a 40 minute transfer to the Riu. The entrance road is a little shabby, but once you pass the security check in gate, the property is gorgeous. I loved the adobe style architecture of the Sante Fe even more than the formal Riu Palace next door. The Sante Fe lobby is beautiful and huge with about 20 living room style areas with couches for groups/families to gather. We were greeted with a welcome juice drink. Check in took only 10 minutes. It was not crowded at the time. There were several front desk staff checking in guests. The man checking us in gave us a map of the property and took at least 5 minutes explaining all the features of the property to us. We returned to the front desk several times during the week with questions and always were treated politely. As it was still off-season before the big holiday rush, I would guess the property seemed only 30-50% full all week.
We had a first floor, gardenview room, with a veranda that looked out on the pool. The room was new and beautiful with a king size bed. It was slightly hard, but we are used to memory foam at home. The bathroom is large with double sinks, bathtub with mounted/handheld shower, blow-dryer and large fluffy towels. There is a nice large closet with lots of hangers, iron and ironing board. Our safe worked fine with my only complaint about it is that it is small and awkwardly mounted on the bottom of the closet. The gardenview buildings are four stories with no elevator – only the oceanview building has elevators, in case this is an issue for you. The room has a mini-bar with bottles of tequila, rum, vodka, and whiskey; in addition the fridge has bottled Corona, coke, sprite, and large bottles of water. Be sure to use the bottled water for brushing your teeth/drinking while in the room as the faucet water is listed as non-potable. The drinking water/ice served on the property is purified.
The Riu Sante Fe property is very big and does involve a lot of walking, but so do many all-inclusives. I have only stayed at smaller ones and now know that would be my preference for next time. The setup is a little odd in the way they built the main property and gardenview rooms behind the Palace and then the oceanview building somewhat kiddy-corner. The property behind that is still vacant and our bellman told us they will build that next, but not sure if it will be part of Sante Fe or another property. Anyway, we liked being in the gardenview section near the lobby, main courtyard, entertainment, shops and all the restaurants except the steakhouse which is by the oceanview. But then our walk to the ocean was farther. It’s just personal preference. The property is beautifully landscaped with cactus, flowers and palm trees that will be even more spectacular when they mature.
Food: We were not expecting any gourmet food and we thoroughly enjoyed the choices all week. There is a great variety with some popular items being offered daily and new choices each day. Breakfast and Dinner are served in the large La Baja California Buffet which is lovely with excellent service by all the staff. It is very roomy with many different stations. Much of the cooking is being done right behind the station and food is constantly replenished and fresh.
Breakfast had made-to-order omelets, ready made omelets, poached, scrambled, fried, hard-boiled and sunny side up eggs. French toast, pancakes, hash brown patties, etc. Bacon, sausage, cold cuts. Cold cereal and hot oatmeal. A large selection of breads and pastries. Fresh fruit and yogurt. Fresh made fruit smoothie drinks. And at every meal: the Mexican beans, meat, and amazing guacamole, and salsa. They serve you coffee/tea or you can get it from the machine which has many choices, my favorite the cappuccino! This is just a sampling of the breakfast served 7am-10:30am. Continental breakfast is offered at La Mision from 10:30-12, but we never sampled that.
Lunch was served at LaMision and Torote from 12-3:30pm again with a nice variety of items. They have excellent choices of pizza daily. For those who need their burger and fries fix, that is also available. Various delicious Mexican dishes were always available, as well as different pork, chicken, beef and fish dishes and of course the fresh tortilla chips, guacamole and salsa. A large salad and fresh fruit bar and soup. Corona beer, white and red wine on tap. Sodas, juice and ice tea also. Dessert bar and soft serve ice cream machine. Snack is served in the same two restaurants from 3:30-5:30 with just a little less available than lunch time.
Dinner: In the main buffet from 6:30pm-10:30pm, indoor and outside seating. We ate there many nights and enjoyed the large variety. They have a carving station that usually offers 2 different meats each night such as roasted chicken, duck, turkey, ham, roast beef, roast pork, and beef Wellington. The large salad buffet, soups, beans, rice, Mexican selections and then many other meat, carne asada, and side dishes. We enjoyed much delicious fish all week, with our favorite being the fresh tuna served many ways. One night they offered a delicious garlic jumbo shrimp dish, and once cold peel and eat shrimp. They also have prepared or made to order pasta station. A variety of dessert choices with delicious flan. They also usually have a fresh dessert being prepared at a station. And for dinner they have an ice cream cooler with scoop it yourself ice cream and sherbet – loved the lime after a large meal. This is just a sampling and we never left hungry!
You can also dine in the specialty restaurants with reservations made daily from about 11am-4pm at a table set up near the Asian restaurant. They offered two seatings for dinner, about 6:30/7pm or 8:30/9pm. During our stay they alternated which restaurants were open each night, but this may have been because it was not full capacity.
Zashila, Asian, indoor seating - Delicious all buffet style, with salad, sushi, soup, noodles dishes, egg rolls, various dishes including sweet and sour and Peking Duck and Ribs. Ask for the fried ice cream dessert – yum.
Carusso, Italian, indoor seating – All buffet. Not great. We ate a little and then went to the main buffet to eat.
Torote, Steak House, open air seating- Enjoyed a “sizzler type” steak, rib eye and top sirloin. Here, they have a buffet for salad, appetizers and desserts; but you order your main dish. The menu also offered a fish kabob and other items I can’t remember. They bring you your main course cooked to order with a half baked potato and vegetable. It was good, not great, but we didn’t go to Mexico for steak.
LaMision, Mexican, open air seating – Never got there for dinner as we missed the reservations.
Drinks – We found the drinks very good, with our favorites Corona w/lime, Mojitos, margaritas and chocolate martinis. Bartenders were excellent.
Pools: The water was not freezing now, so the heaters must be working because it gets very chilly at night at this time of year. The gardenview area pool is massive and beautiful, with a swim up bar, whirpool tub within the pool. This is considered the activities pool where the staff offer “fun” during the day, including water volleyball and bingo etc. Small crowds this week, so not much happening here. The pool has cool cement loungers for when it is really hot. There is a sea of comfy lounge chairs everywhere with palapas all over. The oceanview pools seemed more popular. The smaller one with the swim up bar and 2 whirlpool tubs was the most crowded. The water was quite pleasant here, even warmer than the bigger pools. There is also another small pool on the other side without a bar and the large infinity pool in the middle with a huge fountain spray. Again, a sea of lounge chairs with white umbrellas here. As others have mentioned: it isn’t convenient to climb up tiled stairs through the restaurant to the back in a wet bathing suit to use a bathroom. The beach area is beautiful with that amazing view of Land’s End. There are many Riu lounge chairs, but no umbrellas, on the beach. This is not a swimming beach, and the red flag was up daily. There is a Riu lifeguard that will assist you with chairs, activities, water taxis, etc. Beach volleyball also available. Some vendors, but not pesty if you said no. Personally, I wish horses were not allowed on the beach because of the manure. It looks fun to ride them, but it should be done elsewhere, not in front of hotels.
Entertainment: We only saw part of 3 of the nightly shows as they start rather late for us at 9:30pm and we were usually wiped out from our daytime activities. Two of these were hokey audience participation shows. One was a just ok Latin dance show. The entertainment could definitely use some work. The staff works hard but they need more experience. The large show venue LaMonumental is open-air, so again, it was a bit chilly at night. Three free standing bars are also in this same area and popular at dinner time. The indoor Sports Bar and indoor Disco are also in this same large square with all the restaurants and shops.
Spa/Gym: I did not use it, but I did take a tour of the facilities. It is located near the gardenview pool. The gym looked well equipped. The spa was very pretty and clean, with an area for massages, hair & nails, sauna, steambath and 2 whirlpool tubs which were actually warm. The girl said you need to make a reservation to use the free whirlpool tubs. I’m not a big spa person but the prices seemed high to me, but probably not for a resort.
Conclusion: We loved our Cabo vacation. The Riu Sante Fe was a beautiful place to stay with good food and friendly, hard-working staff. Relax and go enjoy your vacation.

Nice vacation.

by TripAdvisor Member redr0cker

My wife and I spent the last week at the Riu Santa Fe in Cabo San Lucas. We just got back from our trip, and overall it was a good experience. I really wish that I would have had the option of 3.5/5 rather than just 3 or 4, as I feel our experience was not quite good enough for a 4, but not poor enough for a 3.

I'll attempt to give you a breakdown as to the different parts of the hotel and the different things that had me give the rating I did.

First impression/check in:
Our check-in went smoothly and quickly. The guy at reception was very friendly, spoke excellent English, and explained the layout of the resort effectively. It only took a few minutes for him to find a bellhop to lead us directly to our room with our luggage. The only negative/funny aspect of this was the bellhop forgot to give us our key after letting us into our room. After contacting front desk, we instead just went down to front desk to get ourselves another key.

Resort layout/cleanliness/beauty:
Everything is beautiful and very well taken care of. It seemed like there were hundreds of people cleaning around the resort. You could tell the resort is new, in that the palm trees and flowers were not very mature yet. In 5-10 years, everything will look even nicer. Like others have mentioned, the resort is huge, and the distances between the sections make it a long walk to get anywhere. Be prepared to walk. We didn't find it terrible, but it did get annoying at times.

There are a number of pools at the resort. The pools nearer to the beach are large and cold. The pools in the larger part of the resort at the back are large and slightly warmer. They were nice, but not overwhelmingly so. The bigger disappointment for me was that the 'Jacuzzis' are not heated at all. I expected they would be 'hot tubs', and they were not. The only 'hot tub' in the resort is at the spa. Although it does not cost anything, you have to make a reservation to use it, and the water is still not very hot. For anyone who does not care about hot tubs, this should not be a big deal. There were plenty of loungers available at the pools.

Overall, they were nothing too remarkable. The food was good, not great, but I thought the variety was decent. There were some pleasant surprises with some of the foods, and some disappointments. We were unable to eat at the Italian or Asian restaurants as my wife had certain dietary concerns, but she found more than enough food at the other restaurants.

We do not drink alcohol, so we did not use the bars much, except for the odd Pepsi or other non-alcoholic drink. Keep in mind, that the atmosphere here was very strongly 'drink till you drop', so if that is not your thing, be prepared for it.

Only enjoyable due to the lameness of it. We only stayed through for one whole show, and laughed at some of the ineptitude. Do not go to this resort for the quality of shows. But as we were not expecting much here anyway, we were not disappointed.

Nice beach, but nothing spectacular. Great view of Land's End, and the water was warm. Like others mentioned, it is not a swimming beach, but you can go in a little ways, as long as you keep in mind the undertow.

We had chosen to go to Riu Santa Fe because we got a really sweet deal (contact me for details if you want). Overall, we had a great trip, as we were able to accomplish what we wanted. We sat by the pool or on the beach for almost the whole week, and came home with a nice tan and good memories. Although I would still recommend RSF to people who ask, we will most likely not go back to this resort, but the main reason for it, as lame as it sounds, is because they did not have any hot tubs. If you choose to go to RSF, I hope you have a great time.

About what we expected...

by TripAdvisor Member jwindt77

We stayed at the Riu Santa Fe for 5 nights begining Dec. 10th. Just to give you some perspective, we are a gay couple from NY and are real "foodies," so this review definitely has a slant.

First of all, no need to pre-book a shuttle and worry about vouchers. They are all over the place right outside of baggage claim and the price is the same. Also, if you want to rent a car, it is about a 40 minute drive to the Riu, and there is free parking. Reserve in advance because the rental companies will gouge you if you just walk up to the counter. Transportation while there is limited to cabs or the bus if you have no car. Cabs to town are about $10, although you can easily walk to the center of town by walking down the beach, about 25-30 mins. If you want to rent a car the day before you check out and then drop off at the airport, there is a National at the Santa Fe, and there are Avis and Thrifty at adjacent resorts. You can do a little exploring and save the shuttle fee on the return (about $15 each).

Check-in was a breeze, and we experienced no problem communicating with the staff. The open-air lobby was quite attractive.

There is a lot of walking, but if you are fit, it's not overwhelming.

We had to change room 3 times until we realized that all of the rooms smell like mold. They looked clean, but there is such high humidity that mattresses, pillows and comforters get musty. This is a problem at many Mexican resorts, but to me, it was particularly bad at the Santa Fe, especially considering it is so new. Buy a can of Lysol at the WalMart across the street, it may come in handy. The rooms are very bland, no color at all. Television stations, especially in english, are limited. Also, I was unaware that they made 27" televisions with curved screens still, but Riu found them. Also, what's w/ not having key cards for the rooms?

The pools, except for the pool bar on the left at the beach, did not seem to be heated (note to Riu: Heat The Pools). The pools were attractive, there were plenty of loungers. We used the heated jacuzzi at the Spa without charge. It wasn't bad, but wished they has heated jacuzzis at the main pools. We were the only ones there, and they won't let you bring a drink in. We used the gym 3 times. It was adequately equipped, but I did want for a set of free weights.

The drinks were good, and plentiful. There are lots of bars. The premium liquor selection is limited. I am a gin drinker, and they have Beefeater on the menu, but many of the bars did not stock it. Also, the tonic they use is Canada Dry, but it tasted strange. Not sure why... The Sports Bar (also where the internet is) was somewhat weak. No American sports channels (c'mon Riu: 90% of your clientele is english speaking). Also, the prices for internet ($8 an hour) and a game of pool ($3) are a little steep. They always have "nachos" and snacks (sandwiches, hamburgers) in the Sports Bar. They are bad, avoid them.

The food, oh the food. Three words: mediocre at best. Everything is buffet, except the steakhouse. And, when you get your steak, you will wish it were a buffet. Hands down, the worst steak I have ever had. There is a lot of variety, but most everything tasted bland. The salad bar and the fresh fruit were the only things that were consistently acceptable. The desserts were inedible. I must admit that there were people there who liked the food. I am not sure what their story was, but all I can say is, if you enjoy excellent food, you are not going to enjoy eating at the Riu Santa Fe. I was actually craving cruise food by the time we left...and I generally detest cruise food! We actually ate several meals in town on this trip.

We generally avoided the entertainment. What we did see looked very amateurish and awkward, which can be entertaining in and of itself. We did not go to the disco. It would have been nice to have movie screenings. There were lots of employees out by the main pool during the day, trying to get people to play volleyball, dance, play ping pong, etc. However, most people were at the pool by the beach. The main pool is away from the beach. Once the resort gets toward capacity, there will be more people at the main pool by necessity, as the loungers by the beach pool will be full by 10 am. They do have 2 tennis courts, and they will loan you rackets and balls at the front desk.

They have representatives in the lobby daily from Orbitz, Travelocity, Cheap Carribean, etc. to sell excursions. We did an ATV tour which was fun. There are lots of options from which to choose.

About the Riu Palace next door, we did walk through it. It seemed slightly more upscale, and it is more beach oriented. They allow the people staying at the Palace to come and eat/drink at the Santa Fe, but not vice versa. My guess is that that is because the Palace is full and the Santa Fe is not. In order to make sure they don't lose the small crowd at the Santa Fe to the more bustling Palace, they have this policy for now. It will likely change when the Santa Fe has similar occupancy rates. Some people said that if you reversed the Santa Fe bracelt, it was the same color as the Palace one, so they were able to go over there and drink. Give that a try.

All in all, it was an acceptable trip. I would have been really bumbed though if we had paid more. We did get a great promotional rate. Good drink service, nice friendly service in general, nice location and pretty good pools are the strengths. Musty rooms, bad food, cold water in the pools and mediocre entertainment are weaknesses. If you are not getting a great rate, look around further.

Loved Our Stay At Sante Fe!

by TripAdvisor Member troybuilt

We stayed at the Riu Sante Fe 12/6 thru 12/12. Overall we thought most things were above average for us.

CHECK-IN: Our check-in was pretty smooth. Oliver waited on us. We traveled with another couple. We all paid for ocean front rooms. At first he did not give us these rooms but after we showed him our internet confirmation he was able to find ocean front rooms. We got a king size bed but our friends had 2 double beds but that was okay with them. We had to wait a couple of hours for our room. We went and ate lunch and looked around at the resort. Then we called the front desk and asked them if our rooms were ready and asked them to deliver our keys and luggage to us. They did so promptly. Everyone at the front desk was really nice and helpful.

RESORT & POOLS: We thought the resort was beautiful and very clean. There were always employees working on the grounds. Resort is spread out but we didn't mind walking. We had the mentality of "getting some exercise after eating a meal." I like walking anyway.
The pools were very nice. They had infinity pools that had such beautiful views of the ocean. We used one of the pools that had a pool bar and it was quite warm. The other 2 pools up by the beach were cool. But it was hot so it was refreshing. There were plenty of lounges. We actually stayed on the beach most of the day which had plenty of lounges also.

ROOM: We had an ocean front room in bldg. 7. Great view of Land's End and cruise ships. We could also see the sunrise which was beautiful. Room was modern and very clean. Our room attendant came in the morning everyday to clean. One night the toilet got clogged(TMI) and they came promptly to fix it.

FOOD & DRINKS: We are not picky people but this is the only complaint we have. Breakfast buffets were good. Lunch buffets were good. Always a variety so you can find something to eat. We ate alot of guacomole, salsa, and chips. the guacomole is great. Dinner buffets were not that great. We ate at the steak house- not good. If you go there get the ribs. They were better than the steaks by far. Went to the Italian buffet- not good. Obviously I thought the mexican food was the best and the breakfast. We thought the drinks were good. You could get about anything you wanted. They had absolute vodka, just ask for it. We wish there would had been coffee in our room or somewhere close to our room. Our last night, we asked the front desk where was a good place to get some good seafood. They recommended Solomans at the marina. Very Good Choice. We also shopped one day when it rained and ate at Gigglin Marlin and watched the Colts game there. It was good.

We were going to get massages at the resort but decided not to. Go out to the beach directly in front of RIU and find Joe. He can get about anything you want(massages, tours, snorkeling, etc,) for a really good price. He is really a nice guy! We got really good prices on massages, water taxi, and snorkeling. Look him up.

Well, I guess I am done now. We had a great time and probably would go again! Hope you have a good time also!

Still some gliches

by TripAdvisor Member flygal43

Spent a week here and in that week we had a room change 3 times....which all in all took almost a total of a full day. At one point the ceiling in 7373 leaked rom the rain and did get on some of our clothing that was sitting ontop of the little chest in the room. As we saw the leak coming closer to our be we decided to call and change rooms. We had an ocean front room and they walked us down to another room which was a long walk. I looked out the window and said "this is a view of a dirt wall. After another move to a room which was not ocean front view we complained again. Finally after 3 hours we were moved to the correct room. I couldn't believe it was 2 doors down from the room that we left that leaked.

I feel the food was average. Breakfast was O.K. as it is hard to mess up eggs and pancakes etc. It seemed there was always the same choices at the buffet. Steak house was NOt good at all. Very fatty Ribeeye and cold food. Then we were going to the Italian restaurant...got there and they decided to close it since there were not many people there. So again we ended up at the buffet.

Pools were cool but you could get used to the water after a while.
It is a very beautiful place but very spread out. Not for the older generation that may ave problems walking.Perhaps they copuld have a couple of benches here and there on the route to and from the restaurants etc.
Front desk staff was great. Had no problem checking in or out. In fact after we had paid for in advance transportation to and from the hotel to the airport, the company Trans Cabo never showed up. The desk person was great in trying to help us by making several calls. to no available though. So we ended up having to use a regular taxi to the tune of $60.00. Almost missed our plane due to this company not showing up.

Cleaning people were very good. Especially when a tip was left on the pillow for them. Once the people that changed the beer etc. in the fridge took the money I left for the maid. I called the desk on it and they sent someone to check it out. From then on I just gave the maid the money in person.

May not get back there until there are some of the gliches gone. But all in all we all have to understand that it is new and they need time to get all the little gliches out.


by TripAdvisor Member Gail B.

What a wonderful four days! Since the property is brand new, there were few guests and it was like having a large staff just to yourself. The employees are still learning, but they are more than accommodating. The facilities are beautiful, the view amazing (except when the darn cruise ships pull into port), I would suggest this property to anyone that wants to just sit back and chill at a horizon pool!
PS: The food was the best I've had at a Mexican All-Inclusive.

first timers in cabo

by TripAdvisor Member elzabeth

My husband and I just returned from Cabo Dec. 10-17,2007.We had a good time overall but this hotel is not 5 star I'll be nice and give it.4 stars hotel is gorgeous and the size of a small state my husband claims.Rooms are beautiful and well laid out Big!!!Great mini bar and soaking tub. We never ate at any ala cart resturants and were still pleased. We were able to find food and plenty of it. Beach is fun for viewing only. Hard to walk on, and not good swimming.Lots of good people from everywhere. Hotel does have some bad apples among great employees. Money was stolen from bed that was for maid. Mini bars are stocked by maintenance not housekeepers so hopefully she or he will get the tips and not the beer guys!!!Or if you prefer Beer over a clean room then they''ll be there first to get it.But great bartenders and staff.Tips go along way here.Great to leave they work very hard here.Looking forward to going to another Riu hotel. Signed up Riu membership so I can accumulate points for future stays. Spa was great with lots of services.Gym had great facilities.You will happy with this property prices are right and they will go up soon.

Forum Posts

Airport Transfers with Strike Going On

by cpollock

Hi Everyone - I have 2 18 year olds leaving on the 17th to Cabo for their graduation trip. Now I'm hearing their round trip transfers are only good going to the hotel since there is a big transportation strike going on and no-one is allowed to do returns except taxis. Does anyone know how long this could go on for or approximately how much a taxi is to the airport from Riu Santa Fe?


Re: Airport Transfers with Strike Going On

by ViajesdelMundo

Really!! Another strike? Wasn't aware of it, but then I live abut 1-1/2 hrs north----these things happen frequently, unfortunately. The taxi drivers there have a real stranglehold, and I have heard of tourists being really inconvenienced before, even when their transfers are pre-paid.
The charge from Cabo to the airport could easily be US$80 one way, and I am sorry that I can't give you any real tips, since I don't have to use that mode of transport, other than maybe if you post a question on BAJANOMAD website, maybe someone living there can be of better assistance.
Hopefully, the strike will be over for the time being when they go! BUENA SUERTE'.

Re: Airport Transfers with Strike Going On

by caltex08

your info is correct. however it seems to be working out OK. You can take the shuttles from the airport to your hotel but must take a taxi back to the airport. The cost back to the airport is about the same $17-20 per person. Just speak to the concierge at your hotel upon arrival and don't buy a round trip ticket for ground transport when you arrive or in advance.

have fun.


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 Riu Santa Fe Hotel

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas
Riu Santa Fe Los Cabos
Riu Sante Fe
Hotel Riu Santa Fe

Address: 23453 Cabo San Lucas B.C.S , Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur, 23410, Mexico