PLAYA DEL CARMEN: RIU LUPITA HOTEL
Laurie & Family (baby 18mos.)
My wife and I stayed here for three nights beginning 16 March. We have an 18 month old son. We were so dissatisfied with the Lupita that we decided to move to the Riu Tequila, which was a great improvement at a small additional cost. Note that our particular circumstances bore heavily on our opinion.
I agree with other reviews that the Riu Lupita provides good value for the low price. The food is sometimes poor but typically average, the staff and management are excellent, the grounds are clean, and the pool is nice. That said, potential guests should be aware of two serious caveats:
The Lupita is less than ideal for small children. This despite this site’s rating the Lupita “above average” on this very point. There are three reasons why I say this.
First, there are simply too few children. Their parents were obviously more prescient than we were, and decided to book elsewhere. My wife and I found the lack of small children (and their parents) isolating, and we felt sorry for our son who rarely had anyone to play with.
Second, the “mini club”, advertised to be a supervised play area for children, was never open during our stay (due–you guessed it–to the lack of children). The pool and waterslide were nice and well shaded, but the wooden play structure, one of the centrepeices of the mini club, was literally about to collapse. Rusted nails were sticking out of the bottom, there was a missing floor board inviting a leg to slip through (and come into contact with those nails), and the part of the structure to which the rope bridge attached was only a few splinters away from breaking off completely. We actually took some photos of this if anyone has any doubt.
Third, the bus that is supposed to be a simple 5 minute ride to the Beach Club and the other resorts (Playacar and Yucutan) stops only at the Beach Club, and guests must walk the extra 10-15 minutes to other resorts. Some may say the walk is shorter, but it takes at least this long with a small child and all of your beach gear in the blistering sun. Aggravating this was the fact that it was ENTIRELY possible for the bus to go the extra kilometre down the road to the other resorts–but instead one is forced to walk, likely to encourage people to use the terrible Beach Club, thus keeping the numbers down at the other hotels. Despite the inconvenience, we opted for the bus-hike each morning, mainly because staying at the Lupita all day was undesirable for the above reasons.