Great Resort in Cancun
The resort was gorgeous and the beach was stereotypically sapphire blue. The only drawback to the Riu Caribe is that there really was no nightlife there with the exception of the 24-hour sports bar. So if you wanted to have fun, you had to get off the resort. Cover isn't cheap at these clubs either- $40US. It does include all you can drink, but it can add up over the course of a week. The resort had a bus going every night so transportation was provided and they designated an area for their resort guests, so they did take care of us.
If you like to try tropical drinks but aren't into the extreme coma-inducing sugary drinks like Pina Coladas or Daquiris, ask for a long beach. It's a delicious, albeit potent, combo of tequila, gin, rum, and vodka with a splash of orange juice and cranberry juice.
The Riu Caribe had lots of great activities, was clean, had very friendly staff and good sized rooms. It was a large resort- there were lots of people there. I had heard that there weren't as many young people there, but I saw primarily young people, though it wasn't uncommon to see other ages as well. I think this made it more fun. I actually hit it off with a group in their 50's and had a blast with them one evening in the lounge.
Other noteworthy events: we did make it downtown to the market which was typical and not spectacular. Quite touristy, but probably worth the $.60 20 minute bus ride just to check it out.
Food wise, I was in heaven, maybe just because guacamole abounded. There were several buffets liberally stocked and I actually felt like I ate quite healthy (when I wanted to) because the vegetables and fruit selections were fresh and abundant. I was super impressed with the green spinach-orange juice smoothie I could drink for breakfast. The restaurants at night that we made reservresations for were good as well- just be warned that you need to make reservations first thing in the morning. I wasn't completely enamored with the steak I had there. I don't think the Mexicans know how to do a good steak- at least not at that resort. That was my only complaint, though, and there were so many other options that it didn't bother me in the least.
I would highly recommend the Riu Caribe. The food was excellent, service was great, and the views from teh rooms were stunning. The buffets were liberally stocked with everything you could imagine, and the restaurants were superb. Friendly staff, beautiful beach, excellent food, nice rooms.
Gran Caribe- Excellent Value, clean and classy..
Just becuase we found it helpful to read other reviews before we chose this hotel... I am taking the time to give my 2 cents worth. Just returned from spending 7 nights, 8 days there last week with my wife to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary. We were in Cancun once before for our honeymoon 5 years prior and stayed and the Fiesta Americana Condesa (5 star hotel, but not all inclusive), which was very nice, but not as fun and much more expensive... The Gran Caribe wasn't even built in '97 I think sometime in 1998 so everything is very new and not run down.. The atomoshere was classy fun party-flirtacious crowd mostly couples in their 30's.. (few kids and a few singles..) would not consider this a spring-break or family-centered place... though found there were some small families enjoying themselves away from all the tequilla Volley-ball and other adult drinking games in the pool.. Music is loud and upbeat and not distracting... Drinks were very good for most part, most all inclusives skimp on drinks but they would even use top shelf on occasion when requested, and there is an all-inclusive club with fully stocked top shelf help-yourself bar with munchies open 24 hours... Room service Free once per day and refilled the mini bar (beer,water,softdrinks) once per day included as well. Staff was exceptionally friendly, accomodating, and didn't expect tips (though many times seemed much appreciative to recieve an American dollar or two)
Most all rooms have an ocean view, and even standard rooms we felt were larger and nicer than even the Fiesta Americana.. I think this hotel deserves a min. 5 star rating, I would give it a 6... there is plenty of entertainment, and even has a scuba practice pool, tennis courts, spa, and beauty salon... everythin is clos and very accessable.. Ocean is close to pool and beach was actually nice than the pictures show... We would stay here again.. Don't waste your time if given free passes to Wet-n-Wild waterpark.. it was a joke.. even if free admission they get you good with hidden rental costs plus it sucks.. after spending an hour there, we got back on the bus and headed back to the pool at the Caribe... Love those short skirts and red/blue bikinis... Miss it already.. If this is what you are into, this place is a WINNER folks... BOOK IT !!!
VERY beautiful HOTEL but WATCH THE TOUR GUIDES IN THE HOTEL
The Real Gran Caribe Resort, was the one of the most beautiful resorts that we seen on the entire HOTEL ZONE downtown. The FOOD, DRINKS and SERVICE were amazing and I would recommend to anyone planning on going to Cancun to stay at this hotel. They have an Italian resturant and they have the BEST PASTA I have ever had in my life, and the DESERT WOW!!!!! Now please remember there was a huge confusion on how many times you can order room service per day free of charge (all inclusive) you can order it 3 times per day! We took advantage of that BIGTIME. The entertainers were amazing they really put on a show.
NOW FOR THE BAD NEWS-> when you take the (free) shuttle bus from the airport you will have a tour guide most likley it will be Elizabeth and Carlos, anyways they are really nice people but there is one downside to this!!! Please remember that in mexico EVERYONE IS TRYING TO MAKE MONEY in any way. Anyways the Tour guides that sit at the tables by the gift shop are trying to do just that! When you get on the bus they will tell you to ONLY book tours with the hotel and DO NOT book them with any one else. PLEASE LISTEN TO ME and DO NOT BOOK THE TOURS WITH THE HOTEL!! the only reason they say this is because they charge you almost $50.00 more PER PERSON PER TOUR! We booked a tour with them at first, then went to the mall and asked one of the tour guides there how much the exact tour (which you can negotiate) would be and we saved ourselves $200.00 American between 4 people. IT was the exact same bus, the exact same tour!
Another note to remember - If you are planning to go to Xel-Ha DO NOT TAKE THE Tulum trip as well, its nice to see but its a huge waste of time, and its sooo hot there its almost unbarable. XEL-HA is AMAZING Please go there and go snorkeling! If you have any questions about the hotel or the service, please email me
Also on the computers in the lobby, it has a sign that says you have to pay $6.00 american for 15 minutes use of the computers , YOU DONT its FREE they just put that there to drift you away. ALSO BRING AMERICAN MONEY < NOT CANADIAN MONEY!!! Exchange your money at a bank whereever you are DO NOT EXCHANGE IT in the hotel THEY give really bad rates.
Please email me if you have any questions!
a slice of paradise
I have just returned from a week long stay at the Gran Caribe in Cancun. I cannot say enough good things about this hotel. The cleanliness is unsurpassed. The friendliness, and willingness of the entire staff is absolutely unbelievable. Their motto is exceeding your expectations, and they did that and then some. The views are breath taking, and the bathroom is bigger than the one in my home. We had a perfectly wonderful time, and no complaints at all. Do however avoid the Best Buy Tour company in the lobby for booking your tours. If you go to the Plaza Caracol, you will save a good deal of money. Also the hotel exchanges pesos at 9-1, and the airport and the straw markets at 10-1. The markets are easily accessible by bus for 5 pesos....Worth going to for exchange rates
Gran Caribe Real - Five Star*****
Stayed 'all-inclusive' at the GCR the week of June 10th, 2002. It was my first time in Cancun and this hotel made it most memorable. FIVE-STAR. Food, drink, room, entertainment... FOOD: the bar by the pool converts from America to Italian for evening dining. Both great meals. The Maria Margarita is premiere dining with an excellent wait staff (Thanks Alberto). Don't overlook the pizzeria on the far end of the pool for an awesome afternoon snack. The 24 hour snack bar is a pleasant stop on your return from the clubs. Feel like drinking more? They have a open mini-bar for the brave. DRINKS: The bartenders serve quickly with a smile. Try the Miami Vice! (a pina colada / strawberry daquiri). ROOM: Very surprised the first night to see my bed turned down. No matter when I would return to the room it was clean with fresh towels. Housekeeping was no where to be seen... How did they do that! ENTERTAINMENT: The hotel offers reduced covers and specials to different Cancun clubs each night of the week. This really made you feel like you saved some $$$ considering most clubs are $25 open bars. Most clubs are entirely too packed but consider FAT TUESDAY if you want to breath and dance at the same time. It's a very easy walk back to the hotel at 3am. For those who don't want to leave the hotel, the house band will keep things moving in the very active main lobby 'til midnight. I also had 2 friends rave about the massages they received at the spa. Whether you are young or old, this all-inclusive hotel delivers. It will be my only choice if I return to Cancun. *Someone commented that it seemed like they cleaned the hotel every day. I usually passed thru the lobby between 2 and 3 in the morning. It's true... every table, every chair is removed from the lobby for cleaning. Unbelievable.
Gran Caribe Real
Four of us stayed 8 nights in Cancun with accommodations at the Gran Caribe Real. The hotel is beautiful, the pool superb and the entire hotel and grounds kept extremely clean. The restaurants on-site are fair with the best service being at Maria Margarita's. Drinks were best in the lobby bar and service around the pool and lobby for drinks was really good(sometimes I questioned whether or not the pool drinks had liquor in them!). For the money you can't beat the Gran Caribe--beautiful beach, hotel, friendly staff.
My favorite bar in Cancun was Pat O'Brien's for the Mardi Gras night. Fun, decent drinks & good people watching. Worst bar was La Boom----we went with the hotel entertainment staff. We paid $25 each and getting a drink in the place was like pulling teeth. RUDE bartenders and overated dance place. Even when you pay an "all you can drink" price in these bars you'll end up tipping quite a bit to even get a drink. We went on the Carnival Booze Cruise one night as well. I don't recommend it as the food and drinks served were very average. If you want to enjoy a night out for dinner with a decent show--try Mango Tango (remember bug spray as it is by the lagoon). You can take the bus there for 6 pesos each and pay between $44-$57 all inclusive for a show, three hours open bar and the show. Great service (tips not inc. in the amt) and the food was AWESOME!
RIU PALACE, PLAYA DEL CARMEN
Good food, excellent rooms, good pool and beach areas.
Resort kept spotless by myriad of cleaners from early morning to late at night
Riu Caribe or Barcelo Tucancun
Have it narrowed down between these two AI resorts. Can someone give me the pros/cons on both?
We are looking to be in a good location, nice beach, pools, outside/swim up bars, good food, and good entertainment. Help?
Re: Riu Caribe or Barcelo Tucancun
Can't seem to find any information on ANY cancun hotels here. Thanks anyways.