$233 Avg/night
Rate and special offer based on Check-in: Sep 4, 2015 Check-out: Sep 7, 2015

Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

4 stars
View map of Carretera Federal Chetumal - Puerto Juarez Km. 300, Riviera Maya, 77710

Hotel Overview

Ratings and reviews for Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Overall score

3.7 / 5
5.01.0
288 out of 288
Amenities:
3.8
Cleanliness:
4.2
Hotel staff:
4.2
Comfort:
4
Location:
3.8
Value:
4.1

82% would recommend to a friend.

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Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
Birthday Parties
Couples
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jan 21, 2013

Value for price ( Travel dates Jan 15 thru Jan 20)

My wife and I paid $1750 total for 5 days with flight from Minneapolis, Minnesota. We booked last minute with another couple, and had a blast. Airport/Travel - Recomend buying the round trip to and from hotel for $67 each. You won't find better deals and this is very easy. Arrival at Resort - Our bags were taken from the shuttle and we were given a ticket while we checked in. Check in went smooth and they let us in early which was nice. They also have carts for transportation around the resort which comes in handy. Room - The room is very typical to most resorts I have stayed at. Refrigerator with beer, soda and water. Safe large enough to hold a large laptop along wih many other items. Bathroom appeared as though it could have used a deep clean in the grout areas but not bad at all. Pools - nice that we were always able to get a beach chair for the four of us together anytime. Pool was a bit chilly but why would they heat a pool in Mexico? It was a little chilly when we travelled which was unusual. Beach - Nothing special here, water was a little dirty looking but it was still nice to be able to sit next to the ocean. You can also walk the beach for miles and see the outsides of other resorts which was fun. Food - Buffets were decent, really the same food each day with a couple changes here and there. Always have the ability to get lots of Mexican food as well as a burger and fries each day if you don't care for international cuisine. We made reservations each night for the private restaurants which is part of your prepaid price. Would highly recommend each morning getting up going to the concierge and making reservations or try a night out on 5 th avenue in downtown Playa. Bars - always willing to make drinks and never to busy. Always use the brand name of the liquor you want or you will end up with cheap rail. Beer was cold and refreshing, my wife enjoyed the ice beers which had a little blended margarita on top. The sports bar at night had shows for entertainment, Michael Jackson show was very entertaining! Excursions - we didn't do any so I can't comment. We did a couple trips into Playa, during the day we did a little shopping but the stores are really all the same junk stores in my opinion. At night we walked until we found a restaurant we liked and sat down. Food was good and service was awesome. Two of us were celebrating Birthdays and each place we stopped gave us a couple shots of tequila for free which was awesome, but we dd also sit down and have a few beers at each spot as well. Overall - I think the value equals the price paid. Don't expect a four or five star resort because this is not it but still nice.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
3
Cleanliness:
2
Hotel staff:
3
Comfort:
3
Location:
3
Value:
4
Trip purpose:

Couples

Dining tip: In Hotel

Always make reservations for dinner at night. This helps changing up your meals during the week from just buffets.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
whiteboygoestomexico
Family
New England
Mar 4, 2013

Good and Bad

Some rooms/building are updated with LCDs and new bathrooms, while others need a lot of TLC. Building 1's walls seem paper thin and noise is definitely an issue. Rooms overall need to be refurbished or repaired (in keeping with the luxury hotel feel), but the bed is comfortable. Food is hit or miss, but cleanliness seems to be taken fairly seriously. No family members got sick on our trip, nor did I hear any horror stories from others. The Staff is AMAZING (with the exception of the front desk), and will truly make you feel welcome. If you tire of the hotel's many amenities, day trips to Cozumel, Tulum, or Isla Mujures are cheap and well worth your time. The grounds are spectacular and well-maintained -- just wish the same was true of the hotel rooms. I'm still convinced this is better than 75% of the options in Riviera Maya, especially re: value.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
4
Cleanliness:
3
Hotel staff:
5
Comfort:
2
Location:
5
Value:
3
Trip purpose:

Family

Dining tip: In Hotel

The French Restaurant is by far the best.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
JSmoz
Couples
Edmonton, Alberta
Mar 11, 2013

Good not Great

Great staff, excellent food ( in the buffet) the a la cartes left a lot to be desired. Our biggest complaint was the lack of entertainment after dinner, with no disco and a beach party that had a DJ who didnt want to be there and it showed. There was no place but the stinky sweaty sports bar that was understaffed due to the large numbers of guests that were forced to gather here for lack of anywhere to go. Other than that it was excellent. Easy to find chairs by the pool or beach on the busiest of days. Staff seemed to really care (with the exception of the DJ) Buffets were always good and never much of a wait. Sometimes a little difficult to get a drink but only when it was really busy. Great trip overall, can't say I would return to this hotel. Location for sure.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
2
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
5
Comfort:
4
Location:
3
Value:
4
Trip purpose:

Couples

Entertainment tip: In Hotel

If you are looking to stay up late, have a few drinks, dance or hang out..... keep looking. This hotel is perfect for people who want to head back to their room after dinner.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
Kimberly from Willis
Couples
Riviera Maya Mexico
Mar 25, 2013

Burnt to a crisp

The room was comfy, except for the mosquitos. The food was good. The opening show was cheesy, but food was good. Be prepared to sit with people who don't speak English. The resort was too spread out, requiring a lot of walking. The shuttles were always going the opposite way we were. Would recommend it for the price we paid. We got a great deal.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
3
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
3
Comfort:
4
Location:
4
Value:
4
Trip purpose:

Couples

Sightseeing tip: Not Applicable

The snorkeling excursion by catamaran was fun, but not exactly as described.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
shashasha travel
Family
mexico
May 12, 2013

great hotel, but the staff not

great location, the room was clean and full confort, the food was enought good but the staff is not friendly and in a bad mood, but in general the hotel is great.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
3
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
2
Comfort:
4
Location:
4
Value:
3
Trip purpose:

Family

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
shashasha travel
Family
mexico
May 12, 2013

great location

great hotel whit a good location, nice rooms and very clean but the staff is not friendly, even the hotel was great

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
3
Cleanliness:
3
Hotel staff:
2
Comfort:
4
Location:
4
Value:
3
Trip purpose:

Family

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
NJHappyFamily
Family
New York
May 23, 2013

Needs improvement

The first day was horrible as our room (3107) was not clean, AC unit was broken, bathtub drain did not work, and mosquitos lived in it. We could not stay in the room the first night and stayed in our friend's room as my 11 month old was getting attacked by mosquitos. After giving us a hard time, the front desk finally changed our room to building 7 and it was better. The restaurants were good and food was delicious. The staff are very friendly and helpful. The pools are nice but the beach is filled with seaweed and the water is rough. Overall, the resort needs a facelift and can improve. The y should not give out room 3107 to any guests!

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
3
Cleanliness:
2
Hotel staff:
5
Comfort:
2
Location:
2
Value:
3
Trip purpose:

Family

Dining tip: In Hotel

The French restaurant was the best out of all the other restaurants.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
Carina K
Couples
Seattle, WA
Jun 17, 2013

Overall good stay

I ended up giving this hotel a 3 out of 5 star mainly due to location. The resort itself was great! Food was delicious at the a la carte restaurants and the buffet was pretty good. If you eat there every day 3x a day, it can get a little old, so we made sure we always booked an a la carte restaurant each evening. The resort cleanliness and facilities was really impressive. It's a larger resort and we always saw staff cleaning on the grounds. The negatives were the beach and the mosquitos. The beach had quite a bit of seaweed on it and water was not the crystal blue water that we saw when we traveled to the town of Playa del Carmen. The staff attributed this to the fact that it was "red tide" currently and the ocean was cleansing itself; however, not sure why only a certain section of the ocean would be cleansing itself. Playa del Carmen is only 20 minutes away and the beach there looked great. Due to the fact that the resort is eco-friendly, they have several untouched natural jungle areas on the grounds. In these natural grounds there are cenotes (natural spring water that comes up to surface level) which can cause an unpleasant odor. This is also a breeding ground for mosquitos. I have not had that many mosquito bites since I visited Mississippi a few years back. I counted 16 bites just on one leg. We brought OFF spray with us and I'm not sure if the mosquitos are now immune to that stuff, but I was still eaten alive. Overall though, we had a nice time. The pools made up for the beach. The mosquitos were hard to ignore, but we still managed to have fun and were careful not to walk past cenote areas after dusk.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
4
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
4
Comfort:
3
Location:
1
Value:
4
Trip purpose:

Couples

Shopping tip: Short drive from hotel

Every Saturday there are a bunch of vendors that set up booths at the resort and sell trinkets. The prices they charge are pretty high. Head to Playa del Carmen, which is a 20 minute shuttle drive, and just shop there for the day. It will save you money in the long run.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
Wrstanton
Couples
Atlanta, GA
Jun 17, 2013

Would have been 4 stars if...

For the most part, the trip was really enjoyable. I had 3 other couples come with myself and my girlfriend. The first day there, I had 4 different phone calls to my room that ended up being solicitation phone calls from the sales dept. 4 IN A ROW OVER 1.5 HOURS. So, that was annoying. We also hassled several times at the pool for "water sport activities". I understand those guys have a job to do, and I'm accustomed to being approached about time shares and what have you, but this was really excessive. I would have unplugged my phone in the room but I'm there with friends so I didn't since we needed to call each other to communicate from time to time. The restaurants were fairly good, not great, but good. The first night there, the restaurant for the Seafood theme was so hot, no AC, and the manager was frankly uninviting. So that wasn't a great experience. I upgraded and paid $25 for a ribeye at the Steakhouse theme, that turned out to be smaller than the one that was free (all inclusive). That was frustrating of course. I'd say the resort itself is pretty nice, the location is good, but with the place being built on a lagoon/swamp area, the beach is not really the experience you may be looking for. Most of the staff members seemed to be attentive, but there were certainly ones who didn't seem like they cared to be there. Overall, not a bad vacation, but I'd probably stay somewhere else next time. I would call it a 3 star not quite a 4 star despite the fact that the place looks like it could be a 4 star.

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
4
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
3
Comfort:
4
Location:
3
Value:
3
Trip purpose:

Couples

Dining tip: Long walk from hotel

Make reservations for the "Themed" restaurants 24 hours in advance.

Review of Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda - All Inclusive

Reviewer score

3
5.01.0
roadsunknown
Couples
Denver
Jun 29, 2013

Just as Expected

Our stay was just as expected. Nothing more, nothing less. I think this is the key. For the price, we received great value. If we'd payed more, we'd be a little disappointed in a few things, mainly the food. While the food was decent to good, nothing was "exceptional". Of the a la carte restaurants, the French was the best of the three we tried (French, Seafood, Steakhouse). French: the plates were small, but filling, garnished well, and super friendly server. Seafood: Wife's fish tacos were good but nothing to call home about. My steak was, well, don't order the steak. Seems obvious, but it all comes out of the same kitchen more or less and I was burnt out on seafood. Steakhouse: Decent, plenty of food, but cooked uneven, not top quality meat. Did not expect anything more, but you should know to set your own expectations. Buffet: Closes at 11am so FYI for late sleepers and no food is available again until 12 noon. Otherwise, it was a buffet, good selection, but if you eat it for every meal you'll get bored. My favorite parts? Unlimited guacamole and the customary breakfast "egg bar". Drinks: Don't expect to find your premium top shelf labels, but its not all local generics either. There are a handful of imports, Svedka vodka was my go to. J&B is the best whiskey I think they had. Tequilla, well, its Mexico so its decent but its not Don Julio. The hotel staff were mostly friendly and hardworking. Pool wasn't crazy busy like I've heard stories about. We always found a pair of chairs together in a good location - by the bar. No bar in the pool, but they have a few staff running around taking orders (just don't count on timeliness, order double). Or just go up to the bar yourself. Beach is how all the other reviewers put it. Its there, its nice, its built with sandbags, its not big. We are pool people so we didn't care if it wasn't the prettiest thing down there. Want to find a picturesque beach? Stroll north out of the resort to the Tres Rios Resort until you find the rivers. Sweet spot and clear waters. Mexico beaches are all technically public. Bottom line, we relaxed. Enjoy!

Hotel features (5 = best, 1 = worst):
Amenities:
2
Cleanliness:
4
Hotel staff:
4
Comfort:
4
Location:
3
Value:
4
Trip purpose:

Couples

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