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Opinions of Vidanta Riviera Maya

RussellSun

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Has anyone stayed at Grand Luxxe Riviera Maya or any of their Vidanta sister properties (Grand Mayan, Grand Bliss, Mayan Palace) in Riviera Maya? We are visiting in January and wondering what the service and facilities are like. Do they offer AAA 5 Diamond service? Is the beach swimmable? Can you go snorkeling on site? What the the on site activities like? How easy is it to do excursions to all the wonderful places in the Riviera Maya area? What did you like and not like about your stay there?
 

mikenk

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We have stayed many times in RM, NV, and Cabo. We liked them all but all are quite different.

Cabo is small and in a really laid back town San Jose Del Cabo that we really liked - but no real amenities like golf, entertainment, and vast array of restuarants.

RM is more secluded and harder to venture outside to restaurants; it is a huge resort also but not as expansive as NV. There is no view anywhere; the view from my bad room at NV was better than any view at RM. The golf facilities are only a single par 3 golf course - nothing close to those at NV. While the water is clearer, the beach is not as nice as NV or Cabo.

We have found the sales staff at all equally obnoxious. In our experiences, the Vidanta staff for golf, restaurants, cleaning, and booking have all been great. We haven't had bad service excluding sales from any of them.

Mike
 

RussellSun

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Personally, I am a Caribbean person myself. I grew up in Miami and have been all over the Caribbean. I absolutely love the clear water and colors of the Caribbean. My other favorite is the overwater bungalows in French Polynesia esp Moorea, Tahaa and Bora Bora. Caneel Bay in St John was a top favorite too but won’t be able to go back until they recover from the hurricane. The Pacific coast of California, Mexico and Costa Rica just don’t do it for me. I prefer the jungle and mountains of CostaRica over the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. The Pacific ocean along North and South America is beautiful but too cold and dark. I know GL Riviera Maya has no view form the rooms but jungle views can be quite beautiful if well landscaped. I hope their ocean, excursions, service and activities make up for the lack of ocean views. There is so much to see and do in the Riviera Maya and Yucatan area compared to NV. Cozumel is a diver’s paradise - not as good as 20 years ago but still better than what is left in most of the world. I absolutely love Isla Mujeres. The water color in Isla Mujeres rivals French Polynesia in the Bora Bora/Tahaa area.
 

pittle

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Well, at Riviera Maya, you can go to Playa del Carmen and take the ferry to Cozumel for a day. When we took the family there several years ago, the "kids" did that and had a blast snorkeling in Cozumel - none are certified divers. They rented scooters for the day to take them to the best beaches. You can also take an excursion to Akumal for snorkeling or diving.
 

whitewater

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Grand Mayan Riviera Maya

Resort is just plain huge. Be prepared to walk or wait for the on-site shuttle to get anywhere. Pools and food all required a walk/ride. nothing was near rooms. Sometimes we were tired and walking just got old as did waiting for the shuttle.

Pros:
Great Food
Staff were amazing and kind
very clean
lots to see and explore
concierge was very helpful
room very spacious
Close to activities and shopping

Cons:
inside of Pools need resurfacing (they appeared to be starting to do this)
Sometimes at pool there was limited seating if you arrived after 10 or did not throw your towel out at 6am then not show up all day.... (this is a real pain.)
Beach is not really for swimming (rough waves and lots of dead coral). Must wear shoes to get in water
Lots of walking (sometimes it just gets old)
Our room faced the cart path where they pulled on-site shuttle. So we heard it all day & night. This was a major bummer plus we looked out to see people looking at us in our room.

Overall:
we loved the resort and would stay there again. Great time was had by both my wife and I.
 
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DebBrown

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Yes, huge! The first night we didn't know our way around and I got shin splints walking on the paths trying to find a restaurant. It's pretty much a destination resort with onsite restaurants. It's not easy to go anywhere since you are not close to anything. I enjoyed the trip but won't go back.
 

RussellSun

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From the comments so far, GL Riviera Maya sounds exactly like GL Nuevo Vallarta. I will not go in the beach in Nuevo Vallarta because it is cold and dark and I do not like the river run off. I love the clear water of the Caribbean and all the possible excursions in Riviera Maya. We were in the general area last year and it was amazing. I am praying I will love GL Riviera Maya since I don’t like GL Nuevo Vallarta, although I love Puerto Vallarta. It is a beautiful area and I love the areas south of Puerto Vallarta. The area near Garzas Blanca is gorgeous. I also hear the Punta Minta area is very nice, although I have not been there. It’s on our list to visit.
 

cd5

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I went out several times while at the RM resort. Once to Puerto Morelos (fishing village & closest place to visit), once to Playa del Carmen and once to Cancun. We used the shuttle each time(except for Puerto Morelos, used taxi), fairly inexpensive and had no issues getting there or coming back. The Grand Mayan is probably the best "location" onsite as far as being close to everything and doing a little walking. If you're in the Mayan Palace "above" the lobby, that is some serious walking you will do to get to the restaurants, main pool and beach. That said, the walkways are great and it wasn't any great punishment to walk from one area to another when not in a rush (which we weren't ;) ). The restaurants were all excellent - I did not go to the buffet during my stay so no clue how that is. We did not go to the Cirque du Soleil show however did go to their restaurant for another great meal with a lovely ambience. Room service is excellent and all the staff (not sales) are very friendly and helpful.
 
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rpennisi

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Russell, They are not exactly the same, but they both are large and difficult to leave except by car or taxi. They don't have a transportation center like at NV. We got a cab right from our building.

Since the GL buildings are only 3 stories, you will not have the view you have stated you love in other postings.

You will not like the beach, nothing like the waters of Cozumel and difficult to get into because of the coral outcrops.

You will like the service at the GL, their gym and their spa are excellent. Getting onsite transportation is quick at the Grand Luxxe, no more than waiting several minutes.
Nothing is straight at RM, roads and raised wooden platform walkways wind to and fro through the jungle vegetation.

The GL pool is excellent as is the GB Beach Club.

There are many excellent excursions to take, ie Chichen Itza, Tulum, Xcaret, cenotes.
 

RussellSun

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Russell, They are not exactly the same, but they both are large and difficult to leave except by car or taxi. They don't have a transportation center like at NV. We got a cab right from our building.

Since the GL buildings are only 3 stories, you will not have the view you have stated you love in other postings.

You will not like the beach, nothing like the waters of Cozumel and difficult to get into because of the coral outcrops.

You will like the service at the GL, their gym and their spa are excellent. Getting onsite transportation is quick at the Grand Luxxe, no more than waiting several minutes.
Nothing is straight at RM, roads and raised wooden platform walkways wind to and fro through the jungle vegetation.

The GL pool is excellent as is the GB Beach Club.

There are many excellent excursions to take, ie Chichen Itza, Tulum, Xcaret, cenotes.

I don’t like GL NV because they use room assignments to manipulate guests and owners into going to sales presentations. Most of NV is overlooking the buildings and parking lots anyway. If I want a great oceanfront view, I will need to book a hotel and pay for it. Timeshares do not offer that. You get what you get with a timeshare, I have discovered. I am hoping I will like the Jungle views at RM and there will be less room harassment since there are no views. I love Jungle views too. If I can’t have a direct ocean view, then a beautiful jungle view is perfect. I prefer 3 stories over high rises too. NV feels like Las Vegas on the beach to me with all the high rises. The best buildings in NV are Grand Mayan, Grand Bliss, and Mayan Palace for location but only if you get ocean side. The way they have built Grand Luxxe at an angle means most have obstructed ocean views. When they develop the empty land by the river someday, all the views on the river side will be obstructed too. That will be sad because it is so beautiful now. My favorite view in Grand Luxxe NV is the first floor of Tower 3 and 4 looking at the Preserve and landscaping - no ocean view. Nature is a beautiful thing.
 
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pianoetudes

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While the water is clearer, the beach is not as nice as NV or Cabo.

RM beach is calm and water is crystal clear. You can snorkel right at the Vidanta beach, or take a snorkel tour at the coral reef near Puerto Morales (north of RM).

In comparison, NV and PV do not have any coral reef to snorkel. Vidanta beach is wavy and nothing to see in the water.
 

RussellSun

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RM beach is calm and water is crystal clear. You can snorkel right at the Vidanta beach, or take a snorkel tour at the coral reef near Puerto Morales (north of RM).

In comparison, NV and PV do not have any coral reef to snorkel. Vidanta beach is wavy and nothing to see in the water.

Many people say you can't get into the beach at Vidanta Riviera Maya bc it is too rocky and the reef is at the shore. People say the beach is horrible at Vidanta RM.
 

rpennisi

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The beach is fine, it's the coral outcrops that make it difficult to get into the water.
 

bobpark56

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Russell, They are not exactly the same, but they both are large and difficult to leave except by car or taxi. They don't have a transportation center like at NV. We got a cab right from our building.

Since the GL buildings are only 3 stories, you will not have the view you have stated you love in other postings.

You will not like the beach, nothing like the waters of Cozumel and difficult to get into because of the coral outcrops.

You will like the service at the GL, their gym and their spa are excellent. Getting onsite transportation is quick at the Grand Luxxe, no more than waiting several minutes.
Nothing is straight at RM, roads and raised wooden platform walkways wind to and fro through the jungle vegetation.

The GL pool is excellent as is the GB Beach Club.

There are many excellent excursions to take, ie Chichen Itza, Tulum, Xcaret, cenotes.
Do not expect an upper floor unit if you are trading in to GL. We were told that those go only to owners. So don't expect a view.
 

Eric B

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There's another topic posted fairly recently on restaurants in the vicinity of NV that is worth taking a look at for how to get off the resort by walking past the Sea Gardens in order to get to the bus stops that go either to PV or north to Buceros. Haven't tried it yet, but plan to next time we're down there; we've been known to enjoy long walks on the beach, etc....
 

whitewater

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The beach is fine, it's the coral outcrops that make it difficult to get into the water.
this is correct> I swam while at RM. Just had to wear water shoes.
 

richontug

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this is correct> I swam while at RM. Just had to wear water shoes.
GL RM has received 5 diamond rating from AAA for 2018. I doubt if beach quality is included in rating.
 

RussellSun

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GL RM has received 5 diamond rating from AAA for 2018. I doubt if beach quality is included in rating.

I suspect AAA does not attend sales presentations either. I wonder what they use to rate since the customer service at Vidanta is not that great either. Food is average. I could see Grand Luxxe getting a AAA 4 Diamond and Grand Mayan getting no diamonds.
 

rpennisi

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I am assuming that AAA is rating the resort not the sales. Why would they rate the sales in giving their ratings of the quality of the resort. Most go to the resorts and don't go to presentations.
 

richontug

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RussellSun

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Grand Luxxe absolutely does not meet the 5 Diamond criteria. They might meet 4 Diamond. Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta had broken furniture and ripped pillows.
 

hurnik

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If you think the RM resort is huge, then you won't like NV. It's at least 2-3x the size, IMO.

The beach itself is fine, (IMO), it's the getting into the water part (but it's similar that way in Puerto Morelos at the El Cid as well) that's a little tricky, depending on how far you want to go out. I thought they had built docks/piers you could use to get past the coral.

Cozumel doesn't really have sandy beaches (sea walls only) until you get to the southern tip (or the north/eastern side but the winds/currents are very very strong there). The few timeshares that have the "walk in" beaches in cozumel (not a sea wall) are either AI or horrendously expensive, IMO. But to each his own.

I liked the El Cid la Ceiba (but stay in the new towers, not the old part) as they had a very nice snorkel area right there. A 15 min. cab ride to Chanakanaab has a nice "beach" (sea wall again), with awesome snorkeling, but it's around $30 (?) USD per ticket, but it does have lockers you can rent, a restaurant, and bathrooms, so I prefer it over some of the other public beaches that have no lockers (I'm not leaving my stuff on the beach while I snorkel).

But maybe give/try NV location a whirl. Vidanta also has San Jose del Cabo (not Cabo San Lucas), and Mazatlan I think as well. Those are two other places I'd like to visit.
 

mish

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Has anyone stayed at Grand Luxxe Riviera Maya or any of their Vidanta sister properties (Grand Mayan, Grand Bliss, Mayan Palace) in Riviera Maya? We are visiting in January and wondering what the service and facilities are like. Do they offer AAA 5 Diamond service? Is the beach swimmable? Can you go snorkeling on site? What the the on site activities like? How easy is it to do excursions to all the wonderful places in the Riviera Maya area? What did you like and not like about your stay there?

Husband and I returned two weeks ago from a weeks stay at the Grand Mayan RM. Nice but not as elegant as the Grand Luxxe. Sales people very pushy to the point of obnoxious. All other people were wonderful- friendly, attentive. Beach has a lot of coral- wear swim shoes. It was rough water when we were there but I did see people swimming. Food was excellent! Weather was beautiful. Quite a bit of construction going on but not in the area we stayed. Pools were well kept. We saw more natural wild life this time- maybe they ought to be looking for some wild life control officers! Easy to get taxis to Playa del Carma, excursions to Cozumel, ruins, snorkeling, etc. Love this area but plan to explore the west coast of Mexico the next time.
 

rpennisi

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In August at a GL exchange in RM, first floor, we got a kick each morning watching the bands of coatimundi (think raccoons) going by our deck. The band is made up of females and their young. The males are not part of the group. Fun to watch, but shouldn't be fed in case one gets tempted to do so.
 

s1b000

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Has anyone stayed at Grand Luxxe Riviera Maya or any of their Vidanta sister properties (Grand Mayan, Grand Bliss, Mayan Palace) in Riviera Maya? We are visiting in January and wondering what the service and facilities are like. Do they offer AAA 5 Diamond service? Is the beach swimmable? Can you go snorkeling on site? What the the on site activities like? How easy is it to do excursions to all the wonderful places in the Riviera Maya area? What did you like and not like about your stay there?

I am at Vidanta RM finishing up a week at Grand Mayan that I booked with an Interval AC. Would not do this again but have stayed 2X at Grand Luxxe which I would recommend. There are many day trips offered - went to Cobá and Tulum earlier this week, Vidanta has a good travel desk and they can send you the “tour” menu. Trips tend to be full day affairs so don’t over do it. Beach here is not wonderful for swimming but the one in Tulum looked fantastic. The comments about shuttles are all true but GL seems to have exclusive shuttle service now where you can avoid the “transfer” hassle which was one of my GM peeves.


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