The Riu Yucatan is designed more for families. // (c) 2013 Riu Hotels & Resorts
At first glance, it may seem like overkill to have six resorts from a single brand, all within walking distance of one another. But this is exactly what Riu Hotels & Resorts has done in the Playacar section of Playa del Carmen, Mexico. And when you begin to explore the individual properties, the plan begins to make a lot of sense.
The benefit of having so many properties in one area is that it allows Riu to cater to every type of all-inclusive traveler, through a variety of property styles, price ranges, target markets and extra features. The benefit to travel agents is having a great variety of reliable options with specific offerings, making it easy to match each client to their perfect resort.
So what’s special about each Playa del Carmen Riu resort? Here’s a look at the brand’s array of options.
Riu Palace Mexico
This 434-room property was renovated last year to reflect the modern Riu Palace style being implemented across the brand. The recent update means that this beachside resort not only has newly refurbished rooms and spaces, but also offers all the latest offerings from the brand, including the new Lounge 24 for all-day, all-night snacks and drinks. The Riu Palace is the most upscale line from the brand and aims mostly for couples, though family-friendly offerings are also available. One great benefit of the Palace line is that guests have access to all the other Riu properties’ facilities in the area.
Riu Palace Riviera Maya
This 400-room beachside Riu Palace features a more traditional decor scheme than the Riu Palace Mexico. The spaces and furnishings are done in a regional style, and though the result doesn’t feel as modern, the high ceilings and ornate decorations still have a grand effect on visitors. Another great feature of the Palace line is free Wi-Fi access in the guestrooms and public spaces, though it should be noted that the service is sometimes spotty in the rooms.
Also recently renovated, the Riu Yucatan is situated next door to the Riu Palace Mexico. This 507-room resort is aimed more toward families, offering bungalow-style accommodations for added group privacy. Programs at the RiuLand kids’ club run throughout the day at no extra cost, including indoor areas, an outdoor playground and a children’s pool. The property’s lush greenery adds a feeling of tropical isolation to the grounds. Another plus is the possibility of seeing wild monkeys visiting the property. The majority of the Riu Yucatan’s rooms are standard, though 12 suites are also available. Wi-Fi access is also an option, though it’s an extra charge in the rooms at non-Riu Palace properties.
ClubHotel Riu Tequila
Located across the street from the Riu Palace Mexico, the ClubHotel Riu Tequila is a more activity-focused property. Entertainment at the pool takes on a more boisterous feel than, say, the Riu Palace Mexico, so this property is perfect for participation-minded travelers. The large property has 664 guestrooms, and is not located on the beach, though guests have access to the coast just across the street.
Offering 386 guestrooms, the Riu Playacar is one of the smaller of the brand’s properties in the area, yet it still offers two swimming pools, three restaurants and three bars. Though guest choices are slightly more limited here than at some of the other Riu properties, some travelers might prefer the somewhat more sedate style here. Plus, the prices are generally lower than the Palaces or Riu Yucatan, and it’s located right on the beach.
Surrounded by a golf course and tropical forest, the Riu Lupita is a bit removed from the other Riu properties in Playacar. The 300-room property isn’t on the beach, but golf-loving clients will enjoy its close proximity to the area’s 18-hole course, though it should be noted that golf is an additional charge. The property also has a tennis court that is part of the all-inclusive package.
Rates for all the Playa del Carmen Riu properties are all-inclusive and vary depending on the time of year, with Palace hotels at the higher end of the spectrum.