We needed a family escape after COVID shut down all our previous plans to travel. So, we booked a family vacation to Riviera Maya. We found out a couple days before our trip that the original hotel we booked was closed. So (very long story short,) we ended up at The Royal Haciendas resort, and I could not have been happier! Here is my Royal Haciendas review so you can see how wonderful this resort is.
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First, and very important to us, is that Royal Haciendas makes a great all-inclusive for big families! I’ll explain more in this Royal Haciendas Review.
This Royal Haciendas All Inclusive in Playa del Carmen review has everything you need to know about the resort. Is Royal Haciendas family-friendly? Have good food? And a most important question (to us, anyways) is does Royal Haciendas have a good beach? Continue on for a full break down.
Royal Haciendas Review
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Table of Contents
Where is the Royal Haciendas?
Royal Haciendas is located in Playa del Carmen, a short drive south of Cancun. The resort is not in the downtown area, but is just a short drive away nestled into a thick flora of trees.
This makes it perfect for those families wanting a bit of a getaway outside of the city, but still close enough to grab a cab for a short drive.
While we loved the food at Royal Haciendas and didn’t eat out at all, it’s easy to get to town if you did want to go out.
The location is also ideal for doing other activities in the area.
Check In Experience at Royal Haciendas
You walk into a beautiful, bright, grand check-in space. Check-in was friendly and easy.
Then we were greeted with a personal concierge who showed us to our room and gave us her number to WhatsApp her when we needed something. She does offer to schedule a timeshare presentation, but does not push it at all. It’s easy to say “no”, or if you’d like to, you can say “yes” and have an incentive for doing so.
Hotel Rooms for a Large Family at Royal Haciendas
The great part about this hotel is that the rooms are villa-style, which makes Royal Haciendas great for big families. We had the complete villa, which included a kitchen, dining table, living room (with 2 murphy beds), and 2 bedroom/bathrooms (one on each side of the main area). It was a great space and so nice to have a communal area for the 6 of us.
The shower in the master is a huge walk-in. We have a big family, so it was SO NICE to all be in the same unit. We often have to book two separate rooms. Not here! We loved being able to all be together.
Kid’s Club at Royal Haciendas Mexico
We spent the majority of our time at the beach, at the pool, and eating. The kids spent some time doing the kids activities, too.
For the kid’s activities, the child has to be 4 or older to be left. Children under 4 may attend kid’s club activities with an adult present.
We picked up a schedule for the resort, which lists daily activities/times for children, teen, and adult activities.
We saw the woman running the kid’s club on the beach (the kid’s club staff wear purple shirts). She had a bag of sand toys, so the kids sat down and built sand castles and sand figures. Even the adults joined in that time. Next, we met her at the very large kid’s pool where they had various races in the shallow water. It was a blast!
Update: Since this post has published, they have also put in fun slides / little water park at the kids pool area!
Each night from 6-8pm was an activity for the kids as well. Our kids attended superhero night, where they went on three scavenger hunts to find superheroes (laminated figures).
They then went to the beach where they competed to see who could throw Thor’s hammer the farthest in the sand. Then they returned to the kid’s club where they ate chicken nuggets and fries, while watching a movie.
Restaurants and Food at Royal Haciendas
We were really happy about the food situation here, which isn’t always the case at all-inclusives.
There are two restaurants at the main (front desk) building that require reservations. At one restaurant, you can sit and order from the menu, or you can schedule Hibachi. The chef here was really fun and did a great show.
The other restaurant in the main building is more of a surf and turf menu, and is a bit nicer. They have plenty of kids options, too.
Outdoors, there is a grill right at the pool for lunch and dinner, which is convenient when you’re hungry but don’t want to pack everything up and go inside.
There is a bar and grill at each pool as well as a bar inside the main building that serves coffee and lunch/dinner crepes and paninis.
And finally, there is the large palapa restaurant near the beach that serves breakfast. You may sit down and order from a menu, or you can choose the buffet where the options are endless! After you fill your plate, you can sit and enjoy the ocean view in the fresh air restaurant.
This Palapa restaurant typically serves lunch and dinner as well, but currently was only serving breakfast due to low capacity at the hotel.
Other Reasons The Royal Haciendas Playa del Carmen was Amazing!
The staff was great. Everyone was so friendly. They also provide poolside and beach service. My kids did a few kids club activities and had so much fun! They were gracious when my kids spilled their drinks, were acting tired, or fell asleep at the table (it was a long, hot day!) Many of the waiters would talk to our little ones and joke around with the older ones.
Health/Safety- We were here shortly after the area started to open back up in summer 2020. There was sanitizer at every restaurant. The staff also had a bottle of sanitizer that they squirt in your hands when you sit down to eat.
They provided a contactless menu; we just needed to grab our phone and scan the QR code to look at the menu on our own device. At the time of our visit, every staff member was wearing a mask, all the time (even the water aerobics instructor was wearing a shield.)
They also wear eye protective gear. The whole resort is constantly being cleaned. Someone constantly comes around and sprays/cleans the lounge chairs, the rails, the tables (always cleaned when you sit down to dine), everything.
The bathrooms near the pool always smelled like fresh orange from the cleaning. Housekeeping is incredibly thorough! We felt incredibly confident in the safety protocol.
If masking and heightened health safety measures are important/vital for your vacation, you may want to call ahead and ask what the current situation is. As I said, this was in 2020 when everyone was expected to mask.
Pools at Royal Haciendas- family, children’s, and lap pool
Pools- Our side of the property had a large kiddie pool, a lap pool, and a huge main pool. The main pool was not zero entry, but it did have a very wide “step” all along each side that made it easy for kids to play. It also has a big shallow area where the steps are (maybe as big as a large hot tub). And there was a hot tub. I believe the other side of the property mirrored these pools.
Best White Sand Beach in Playa del Carmen
Beach- Oh the beach! The beach was amazing! It is not a far walk to the beach from the pools. The sand is soft and white!
There is a bit of seaweed which is normal for the area, but the staff works all day and does a fabulous job of clearing the seaweed off the beach.
We went for a run along the beach and as we passed other properties, we realized just how much Royal Haciendas does to keep the seaweed off. (All the other resorts had tons and tons that was not cleaned up).
The water has spots of seaweed/rocks, but you can easily see where it is clear. The water is so clear and there are many spots to walk in. It doesn’t get very deep, so the kids could go out and play for a while.
Other Activities and Things to Know about Royal Haciendas
There is a schedule of activities for kids, teens, and adults. We participated in a few (kids club, water aerobics, bingo, kayaking) and had a great time.
Sometimes there are shows at night (not every night, but there is always SOMETHING at night to participate in if you’d like). Outside were ping pong tables, corn hole, life-size chess, and beautiful fountains, trees, flowers. The property is beautiful.
There is an activities center that I would have loved to spend time in (games, puzzles, fooseball, etc.), but we got lucky with good weather the whole trip and never spent time there. We ALWAYS had plenty of bottles of water. They deliver drinks (waters, soda, beer) to your fridge every day. We also ordered them poolside, and at meals.
The trip was amazing. Great staff, great beach, great pools, great activities…we had an amazing time at The Royal Haciendas Playa del Carmen. Our kids constantly ask to go back!
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