Saturday, June 12, 2021

Resort Review: Riu Palace Baja California / PHOTOS

Riu Palace Baja California
Riu Palace Baja California Adults Only and COVID safe Cabo San Lucas, Mexican resort

*It’s swimsuit season and vaccines are readily available. Who’s going on vacation? Me and a friend were in need of a getaway, with a beach, a view and few clothing requirements. We discovered the Riu all-inclusive resorts in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and just loved it. Seriously, I don’t think we had any complaints.  

The resort, a Spanish-owned resort line with properties all over the world, offers three different experiences in Cabo San Lucas, including where we stayed, an adults-only space. From the food to the service to the room to the infinity pool, staying at the Riu was exactly what we needed and would return in a heartbeat. 

Rooms & Services: We stayed in a garden level junior suite that had a view of the resort courtyard, which was meticulously manicured. The balcony was a great addition to the space, giving us an opportunity for some great, peaceful mornings as the sun rose. We absolutely loved the soaker bathtub, but I’m not sure how friends who aren’t comfortable being naked in front of each other could take advantage of it because it’s kind of in the middle of everything. We enjoyed it though! The shower was super spacious and we definitely took advantage of the mini-fridge that remained stocked with beer, juice and water. Under normal circumstances, each room would be fully stocked with a beer tap, but because of COVID, this feature wasn’t available at the time of our visit.

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riu room riu balcony

The customer service was exceptional with warm welcomes and smiles in all spaces. When we called for an extra towel or a refill of water, service was prompt and the front desk called back to follow up, making sure our needs were met. We could want for nothing. 

By the way, the spa was great! Reservations for massages and other services of course are required, but the hot tub also requires a reservation. The resort doesn’t offer outdoor jacuzzis so the spa has an exclusive hot tub for those who are in the know. No extra payments are required for the tub, just a reservation. We also had a lovely massage on the beach and the service was excellent. 

Food & Entertainment: I made a mistake of starting a cleanse before going on vacation. That cleanse went right out the door. It didn’t have to, though. Riu has a wide selection of fresh food and a variety of cuisines, all delicious, for any dietary need. The first day or so, I behaved, eating only fresh fruits and veggies. But at some point, for the purpose of this article, I had to sacrifice my body for the good of the review. So I ate lots of the food (hehehe). From the sprawling buffet of meats, seafood, endless guacamole, and fresh juices and smoothies to fresh made desserts, omelets and tacos, we ate like queens. Riu also offers evening dining at a variety of different restaurants on the property that include Indian and Italian food. There was a steakhouse we didn’t take advantage of. Our favorite restaurant was the Asian inspired spot that featured a salmon tartare. Each restaurant was super accommodating for our dietary restrictions as well.

Poolside drink service was the greatest! Riu staff were prompt, helpful and friendly, delivering all kinds of Tequila concoctions without us ever needing to leave our lounge chairs or the pool. 

And each night was topped off with a live show. We enjoyed a night of Michael Jackson, some oldies and more. There was a night, I think it was a variety show with some disco, that featured some dancers wearing terrible, and slightly offensive wigs that were supposed to look like Afros. That was the worst show of our stay. Otherwise, the singing and dancing was great each night.

If you decide to book, be sure to download the resort app, which is super convenient for discovering what shows and menus are available each night. It also makes it easy for you to learn about what the sister resorts offer as well. 

Perks & Safety: Being that we were stationed in the adults-only resort, we thoroughly enjoyed the peaceful sounds of no-children around. We love them, but not while on vacation. So alcohol was flowing and string bikinis were plentiful. The Riu might be a great hook-up spot if that’s what you’re into! Because we were there for almost a week or so, we saw the change of the crowds from Friday to Wednesday. The weekend seemed to attract a younger and browner crowd. We made friends with a few Black folks from all over the U.S. but most left by Monday. From Sunday to Tuesday, a more middle aged white group of folks joined us. 

Being at the Palace Baja California, resorters have the opportunity to check out the neighboring Riu properties. We had lunch at one and strolled through the other, both were exceptionally larger than our home resort. The food, we discovered, was much better at Riu Palace Baja California and the crowds were more mixed. We noticed there were some spring breakers at one resort and lots of kids at both. 

When it’s time to leave paradise, you’ll have already taken your COVID test at the resort. At check-in, the staff schedule a test time for up to 48 hours before your departure to help ease your airport experience. It was great because my friend and I took our rapid test between pool lounging and dinner. We didn’t have to leave the property at all. Our results were emailed and dropped off in our room. 

Guests are encouraged to wear face masks in common spaces, especially when ordering drinks at the bar. But most of the resort’s common spaces are out doors, which eased our anxiety. All staff members wear masks throughout the resort. 

Riu is an affordable resort brand, making luxury vacation more accessible. With rates ranging from $125-$200 a night, Riu offers a wonderful experience, great customer service and good food. Also, please note, if you decide to book this resort, be sure to book on their site to take advantage of any offers and to get that complimentary airport shuttle. 



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