My wife and I just got home from a two week stay at the RIU Emerald Bay in Mazatlan. We were there last year and loved it so much we returned this year. The rooms are above adequate and the A/C really cools you down. The food is excellent everywhere it is served. On the beach in the breezeway and in the restaurants. The Steak House was great and gave you more than you could eat, the Asian restaurant was our favorite with so many mouth watering options. The Mexican restaurant wasn't quite up to par. The menu offering was too limited-4types of fajitas, a fish dish, a shrimp dish and one other. It was excellent last year when it was buffet style. The buffet was incredible! It was five star fare in a buffet setting. The only thing with the food was you couldn't find a burrito or an enchilada anywhere and you're in Mexico. Minor complaint. You can eat non-stop from 7am till 10pm. There are shows every evening and they are great. The Mr. and Miss RIU shows are absolutely hilarious and the actors are the day pool staff. The staff are very friendly and I got to know Fernando, Armando and Rico well. The ladies that work there are WOW! We celebrated our 34th wedding anniversary our last night there and I surprised my wife with dinner on the beach. This was awesome! I asked one of the heads of the restaurants, Jesus, about doing this and he put me in touch with the right people. We had or choice of entrees and dinner came with a personal waiter for two hours, Thomas, a bottle of champagne, a rose petal covered table and ground around the table and a beach setting that was off-the-chain! We dined to a beautiful sunset and I scored a ton of points with the wife. Overall I would give RIU Emerald Bay in Mazatlan a 10 out of 10 and will be going back. One thing I did find out, don't book your vacation too early. You will pay far more than you will if you wait till a couple of months or less from the time you want to leave. I booked ours in Oct. for June and paid $1200 more than I would have if I booked it a week or two before we left. That was frustrating and of course, no refund of the difference.
This resort was perfect in every way except for the explosion of little kids all over the place. The hotel was beautiful, service was excellent, and the rooms were kept very clean. I was also impressed with the tasty food at the buffets.Even though the resort was fabulous , I would NOT recommend it to anyone! The pools were way over crowded with little kids, even the so called "Adults only pool". They must have had deep discounts for locals, because the hotel was packed with them and hardly any tourists. Several nights we made reservations for the sit down restaurants and again got bombarded with unsupervised kids jumping and running around almost bumping into us and our food. It is a shame that the guests are the reason for us never wanting to go back. Hopefully they will revise their "pricing" to not make it so appealing for each family to bring 3 or 4 kids at a time.
We weren't planning on taking this vacation but the price was so good we couldn't turn it down. We live in California and there is a direct flight from LAX to Mazatlan so that saved us a lot. After I booked our trip I read online about the cruise ships pulling out which worried me. After a little research I came to the concluion that they over reacted. I'm glad we went. We felt very safe the whole time. There are lots of timeshare companies at the airport that at first seem very helpful offering to find your shuttle for you. But don't be fooled. They pretend to work for your shuttle company when they really want to take you to their resort. If you hire a shuttle they should be waiting at the exit door for you with their company name on a sign. The Riu is beautiful. Every room has an ocean view and balcony. We were on the 11th floor with a great view of Mazatlan. This resort is about 3 miles down the beach from the main city. Far enough away to really relax, yet close enough if you want to go into town to shop. This resort is quitier then others I have been to, which is exactly what I was looking for. They aren't playing loud music all day while you are enjoying a good book on the beach. There were plenty of lounge chairs around the pool and beach area. We never had a problem finding one, even during the busy weekend. Friday and Saturday were very busy. The Mexican citizens visit on the weekends. They tend to prefer the pool area so the beach was still empty. The food was great. We always stay at all inclusives and the food usually isn't very good. Not the case here. Great food with plenty of selection. If you want to book reservations at one of the three restaurants you have to stand in line at 7am, but they let us book two nights at a time. The food was great at all three. Bring small bills to tip your waiter. Not required but it sure makes them happy when you do. They don't have room service. They also don't have coffee pots in the room. You can go down to the restuarant each morning and bring a pot up to your room. We brought a pot with us to boil water and brought starbucks instant with us. I would have given the room five stars but the pillows are flat and bed a little hard. The room was beautiful, bathroom was large and beautiful, very was outstanding. Very quite room, never heard anyone else. Wifi is only available in lobby if you bring your laptop or Ipad. Computers available in sports bar for a fee. Pool table in sports bar cost $5 to play, that was weird for an all inclusive. We will definately return next year.
I just got back from my trip April 19th, 2015 and let me tell you it was exceptional! I had booked with a previous Riu before, Riu Palace Las Americas on Cancun, and I LOVED the riu hotel, so when my boyfriend and I wanted another getaway we wanted to try another riu. I found the Mazatlan Riu Emerald Bay and was like ok this looks good too. I read some reviews that said kids were aloud in the adult pool and food was ok so i was a bit hesitant but let me tell you I literally just got back last night and it was amazing. Everytime a kid went into the adult pool with the swim up bar they were kindly asked to leave which was nice cause the drinking pool was the party pool and the 2 other huge pools were very family friendly. The beach was well kept and this staff is cleaning 24/7 IT WAS SO CLEAN which i love. the view was outstanding, the buffets were awesome, not my best meals ever but certainly not my worst. I already miss having an omelet every morning, if you're wondering if you should go, GO, it was a lovely stay, cool city, nice people and very kind staff. OH and my boyfriend and I never had to even order a drink! the second we finished our drink one of the bartenders came right to our lounge chair with another bahama mama, it was beautiful and relaxing but fun. GO THERE!
After reading ridiculous numbers of hit-and-miss reviews of many resorts, my girlfriend and I chose Riu because it is overall well recommended and just about the cheapest deal in Mexico that Cheap Caribbean offers. We did not regret it one bit, for both Cheap Caribbean and Riu Emerald Bay earnestly did everything in their power to make our visit pleasant. Cheap Caribbean made travel from the airport incredibly easy and cheap (they provide a bus for a small fee), and the staff of Riu are trustworthy, accommodating, friendly, and many of them speak English. The rooms are spacious, all ocean-viewing, and have great bathrooms (though the beds are a bit hard). The mini-bar was a GREAT addition, and absolutely free! The pools, beach, and bar are exactly as advertised: sunny, fun, romantic, etc. Alcohol is definitely present, but no one was going crazy and kids/families would do fine here. There were few spring breakers, and Mexican visitors outnumbered American visitors slightly. The drinks could be stronger, and there was only one option for beer (Dos Equis on tap), but the drinks were generally good and the aforementioned minibar countered the lack of really strong drinks. The breakfast and lunch buffets have incredible variety, so there is no way that you won't like SOMETHING. Most of it is good quality,and though not 100% of it was fantastic, if you find some staples you like it will be fine. The dinner buffet is similarly good, though they sometimes serve leftovers from previous days. The Asian restaurant was good, the Mexican was so-so, but I would avoid the Italian restaurant. They are each open 1 out of 3 nights, but the dinner buffet is really a good alternative with far more options. The excursion list is plentiful and interesting, with island tours, whale watching, and many other options. We went ziplining and toured a tequila distillery for $75 per person with Huana Coa, and it was definitely worth the money (the ziplining was exciting, the staff were fun and hilarious, and the tequila was liberally sampled). I have no doubt the other excursions were also great choices, as well. Overall, Riu was an excellent experience, and you should have absolutely no fears about booking a vacation here. Trust me, I read all of the reviews, and while the resort is not perfect, the only negative ones I found tended to be up in arms over minutiae. Definitely 5 stars, and I cannot wait to return!
I have spent a lot of time at various resorts in Mexico, but this was without a doubt one of the nicer places I have been. The service, the food and the rooms were great! I plan on taking the rest of the family back this winter for another stay.
The staff was attentive and the mexican food was the way to go. The free flowing booze was pretty cool!
The stayed was comfortable at this hotel. The food served was okay, and the staff were very nice. Our room was cleaned and stocked up with our mini bar. The best part of my trip was the excursion we set up with "Gustavo" the rep from cheap Caribbean he went way and beyond to make our trip comfortable and the excursion exciting to "stone island" and the staff from king David Arturo was amazing as well he made sure we enjoyed the excursion. The Downside to this trip was the beach, the beach wasn't safe at all!!' You're at your own risk! If you're looking for a hotel with a beach this may not be a good choice!!! There was a lot of kids and locals at this hotel and you made want to consider if you can't deal with kids all over the place. The elevators were very slow and sometimes not stop at all on our floor. The Location of this hotel is at the very end of the road and there's not much sight seeing unless you take a taxi or a bus. I must add that my daughter wasn't feeling well for the first part of the trip and the restaurant manager Adrain did his best to cater our needs. Overall this hotel add up to their standards!
Overall trip was good however, the Riu has a great policy in place, "You can not reserve seating at any pool" However, they don't enforce this policy at any time! Day two of my vacation, I could not find a place to sit at any of the pools and this was at 8:00 AM time frame. Every lounger had a towel on it and some even had one towel draped over two or three loungers. If the Riu has this policy in place why would they not enforce? It is very clear at 8 in the morning many folks are saving seats. If they would enforce! I truly believe there would be less people running out and saving seats!!!!! Very disappointing!
Visiting the Riu Emerald Bay was a great experience from the second you arrive to the second you leave. It's a beautiful property which is always spotless and feels very safe. What stands out the most is just how great the staff is and how much they genuinely want you to enjoy a stress free stay. Upon arriving to our room we noticed the previous guest had locked the safe before leaving. We called the front desk and within 3 minutes a staff member was there taking care of it. This was particularly impression given that we were staying on the 14th floor. What was even more impressive was that as the door was closing behind him our phone rang and it was the front desk asking if things had been taking care of. The service continued at this high level throughout the rest of our stay. One thing to note is that there is a large number of "locals" who vacation here. When I say locals I mean families from throughout Mexico as opposed to guest from other countries. It was about an 75-25 split of locals to foreigners but I for one do not find this a bad thing. There are a ton of families at the resort which means the pools get quite busy but it was always a great atmosphere and we never felt like we were being overwhelmed by kids running around us. In fact it was the opposite. The family atmosphere meant that the hard partiers stayed to the swim up bar pool and you could choose to relax on the beack or poolside or hop in the party pool to take in the more fun/ party atmosphere. There was a great sportsbar down the beach called "The Last Drop" which showed all the NHL games and had great food for cheap. Particularly the BBQ wings. All and all it was a great place to visit and I would visit again in a heartbeat.