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Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa
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Reviews (3,157)
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Reviewed 16 June 2012

Just got back yesterday from a week at the Grand Palladium White Sands. We chose this resort partially due to the fact that our friends have a vacation club that got them a great discount here, and it was one resort we could all agree upon. I had never been to an all inclusive resort, since to me it was for people who just want to drink a lot or eat a lot of mediocre food. I like a nice drink, and nice food, but also now have two teenagers, and my son (15 now) eats a lot even though he's skinny!

I wanted connecting rooms. With a 13 year old girl and 15 year old boy, we definitely would sleep better at night not sharing a room. I chose a suite and junior suite, and I requested for them to be connecting (no other room types offered connecting rooms). We were very happy to receive this! Very happy!

Upon arrival, it was refreshing to receive fruit juice and a cool towel. Nice touch! Check in was smooth, and the rooms were very clean when we first saw them. We're kind of hotel snobs, but also after living in Hawaii know that a beach resort can be a bit rustic, so had an open mind! Heck, we've had ants and geckos even a the Ritz Carlton Kapalua.

We used AGI Tours for our round trip transportation from the airport - very nice & professional so would definitely use them again. It's a long drive, and the driver offered to stop at 7-11 on the way out of Cancun for a cold drink. That was a good idea - it's a long drive!

I had read that the pillows weren't great, so I had packed a couple of old ones of mine (intending to just leave them there since they weren't needed any more at home). Honestly their pillows were fine, but extras were nice (I use a lot of pillows!). The beds I had read were hard - I liked the bed a lot! It was super comfortable.

I didn't love the idea of buffets, but was impressed with the choices at them. The food was good, fresh baked breads were good, decent selections for even picky eaters, and I loved the fresh fruit juices they made all day with the vitamix machines! The only really bad meals I had were at their Asian restaurant and the steak house. The steak I ordered was barely a half inch thick, and although it wasn't overcooked, it was as tough as shoe leather, with a COLD potato alongside. I just skipped it and had a piece of apple pie for dessert. The Asian food they really should just not bother trying to do. Yuck. Still, I'm not a huge eater, so it was okay. All in all, though, I'd recommend sticking with the buffets and enjoy them! It's hard to please so many people, so I don't think a couple of not great meals is worth worrying about.

The pools were amazing. Simply huge and fun! Our families played water volleyball, swam, played lots of super fun games by the pool like darts and "crazy diver" - if you see Memo leading a game, play it! He is the most amazingly fun and energetic guy! Plus, he's the best dancer at night in the shows. We just were laughing nonstop with him!

The beach is nice. Yes, they do have seaweed, but that isn't the fault of the resort. We still found it nice, fun, and safe. I noticed security walking around a lot, and we felt safe letting the kids go off without the adults (as long as they were in a group).

I liked that the resort was so huge in the sense that I could always find a pool or beach chair in the shade - something that I can't find at a lot of beach resorts (actually I never have found). I think the resort was full our week, or almost full, so that's a nice thing.

The shows were fun at night. I liked the one with the dancing from the areas of Mexico, and the one with rock music was simply amazing! They had some incredible talent with their band! Skip their Disney show though - not worth it.

The maids did a nice job keeping the rooms cleaned. I didn't like the limit of one bath towel per person, but understand that they're trying to limit waste of laundry. I rinse out our swimsuits, ringing them in a towel and putting them to dry in a dry towel, so found that a challenge. Maybe a laundry line somewhere in the room would help, like how most beach resorts have in the shower. No big deal though.

I had noted that we just had our wedding anniversary (19 years!), so they had a bottle of champagne in the room for us. I thought that was sweet of them, but we didn't get a chance to drink it.

I would go back if I get the chance. For the value, and the fun, it was a great vacation. You could never leave the resort and have a great time. We did go up to Playa del Carmen one afternoon just to walk around and shop a bit, and we did one snorkel trip, the Mayan Adventure one, that I booked at the resort. That was fun to see the cenote and snorkel - I didn't want to leave the region without seeing one of the caves. Otherwise, we were happy just staying put!

One other note: the staff was excellent. I never saw so many employees at a beach resort! The second we would sit down at the buffet we were brought drinks, and they were lovely and helpful people. I was surprised that it didn't seem like many people at all tipped at the buffet, but we tried when we had a couple dollars with us. These people work hard! I also tried to leave a couple dollars for the housekeeping - they work hard to keep our room nice and clean.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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9  Thank AlohafromMD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 27 June 2012

Dear AlohafromMD;

We really appreciate all the great comments that you made about our Resort and especially about our staff. We are working everyday to improve our facilities and the quality of service that we provide to our clients. We strive to make every guests vacation one that they will remember as their best vacation ever. Our goal is not only to make our guests return but to make them feel more comfortable each time and to notice the improvements in our services.

Unfortunately we cannot guaranty all our costumers request, however we always try to honour the ones we can depending the hotel availability, we are glad that in this case we were able assigned the connecting room that you requested.

We would like to thank you once again for all your excellent comments and we are looking forward to your next visit.

Regards.

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Reviewed 15 June 2012

Just got back from a great trip and destination wedding. This was our third time to this resort with friends and enjoyed it immensely. Did have a few frustrations mainly with the front desk at check in. We had to wait twice to get checked in to our room, which then the key did not work and the room they were trying to put us in was a smoking room. Had to have a slight power struggle with that issue, but they finally gave in and put us in a non-smoking room. The refrigerator did not work for a day and a half but was resolved. After the rocky start everything else was great with the exception of the restaurants' air conditioning or LACK THERE OF!! We sweated through most of our inside meals! Ugh, do not remember things being that uncomfortable on our previous visits. There are ceiling fans in each hotel room and all through out the lobbies so why not in the restaurants??? Would make a world of difference. found a very new things on the property that we hadn't explored the previous times and that was fun. Look for walking shorts cuts there are all over !!!:) Catch the golf carts anytime, we didn't realize we could do that! All in all a great time!

Room Tip: If you don't walk to do a lot of walking ask for building 56. close to the pool, lobby and beach. If you don't want a lot of walking and stairs stay in the Colonial side.
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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4  Thank nmnkno
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 23 June 2012

Dear Nmnkno;

We really appreciate all the comments and feedback that you made about our Resort, are very glad that you had once again a great holiday. We are working everyday to improve our facilities and the quality of service that we provide to our clients. We strive to make every guests vacation one that they will remember as their best vacation ever.

We really sorry for the first bad impression and the delay while you were your checking in, we will definitely emphasize on our internal procedure in order to speedy and improve this process.

Our goal is not only to make our guests return but to make them feel more comfortable each time and to notice the improvements in our services.

We would like to thank you once again for all your comments and we are looking forward to your next visit.

Regards

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 June 2012

We went to the Palladium to celebrate my 50th birthday, this was our first trip to Mexico (mine, my wife and 16 year old son), we traveled with another family as well. The passage through the airport was a new experiance, thank God my brother has been here numerous times and talked to us about it before we left. We booked through Funjet, and would definitely do it agaian they handled every aspect of our trip very well, Carlos at the White Sands we very helpful. Prior to our arrival we requested a specific building location (building 59 at Whitesands) which we got. My thought is although this is a huge resort all the buildings, villas, etc... locations favor something, some by the pool, some closer to the beach, the beach buildings don't necessarily have much of a view due to the dense jungle their just closer, personnally this isn't going to be a big deal next time. Check in was simple, they seem very set on not letting you check in early, or it was just that busy and we were first timers. Our room was nice, nothing spectacular we had a junior suite, if your traveling as a couple of three like us as for a king bed! The room set up with two beds have full size, we did ask for a king suite but none were available. We did receive a bottle of wine and a fruit basked due to our special occasion (birthday) our friends fruit basket was full of ants so watch that. Food was something of an experiance, very european at the buffets, yet we all found items we liked and tried some new items. The ala cart menus were very good, we were really surprised by the steak at the El Dorado and ribs at the Rib resturant very tasty, the Itialian, not so great, the fish dinner out on the beach was by far the best, you MUST make reservations for this one but don't miss it. This resorts population is very european, we heard languages from everywhere. Me a lot of return visitors, from the states, all very nice and a very nice couple from England. The beach, DON'T leave your shoes when you go for a walk, as ours dissapeared one day and it wasn't the beach clean up crew who took them, keep them with you, The beach is full of seaweed every morning and the crew does a nice job of cleaning it up although it's a never ending job. The saltwater pool is very cool, good snorkeling in a calm arena, very unique and a nice area. Snorkeling was difficult off the beach as the winds created a lot of waves and all but one day the red flags were flying, no biggie. If you like to snorkel go sho Xei-Ha (pronounced Shell-Ha, it's Mayan for blending waters or something like that) AWESOME experiance, the kids expecially liked it. Funjuet booked it at $98 per person including transportation, it's an all inclusive park, food, drinks, snorkel gear is all included. Definitiely go to the start of the river and work your way down snorkeling, not tubing. The view under this river is amazing, the cliff jumps were a blast the zip line was short but the kids loved it. We saw thousands of fish on this excursion and will return to it on our next trip. We swam with the Dolphins (extra fee) worth the money vs. the 3 hour excursions. Went shopping in Playa one day to haggle with the street vendors which is always fun. A lot of times the drinks at the bar were way to powerful, they free pour everything but I didn't want to be hammered by noon! Suggestion - TAKE YOUR OWN OVERSIZED CUP! We went to WalMart they have these clear double insulated mugs with a colorful band, lid and straw (20 oz is what we brought) they were $5 and a lifesaver otherwise you'll spend a lot of time at the bar ordreing two drinks at a time in a 10 oz plastic cup that sucks. Also, get a money conversion calculator APP for your smart phone to do the peso to dollar conversions, it's amazing the variation of conversions these folks come up with, my wife was in the gift shop and picked out a head piece the clerk said $25, after converting the pesos it ended up being $10. Watch out even in the resort gift shop. Our funjet guy told us, remember, NOTHING in Mexico is free!

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank HuskerHawaii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 27 June 2012

Dear HuskerHawaii;

Thank you very much for your review, We really appreciate all your good comments and of course they are our favorites, however all the constructive comment they are also value for us, they are a great and clear opportunity to rectified in some areas.

We are glad that your first experience en Mexico and in our resort was a good one, we have great facilities and we try to exceed all our customers expectations, we realize that having costumers from all over the world and different mentality, it’s difficult to please everybody, but little by little and thanks to your reviews and tools such as TripAdvisor we can have a chance and opportunity satisfied to most of our customers.

Looking forwards for your next visit.

Best regards.

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Reviewed 14 June 2012

I went with 16 of my family members, first thing I did was check in then went to the bar, where Ernesto the friendly bartender greeted me with great respect!!, he made me feel very welcomed along with Melissa the cocktail waitress, they were both very, very nice people. The food was ok, it needed more taste to it, the rooms are clean, and everything I needed was always in there. The pools were clean. I would go back, but not a fan of the food.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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Thank vrock_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palladium-Royal, Community Manager at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 21 June 2012

Dear Guest:

We are pleased that your overall stay was satisfactory. We hope as you say, come back soon.

Best regards,

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Reviewed 14 June 2012

Our group of 41 spent our 5 days at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort and loved it. We go to Cancun almost every year (not as many people as this trip) for over a decade now and haven't been in any hotel twice...This one is one of the best hotel with food choices. We didn’t like the wait for the restaurant though but the food were good overall. But stay away from BAMBO restaurant because the food there was NOT consumable, THE WORST Chinese food I’ve ever tasted. We waited about 30 minutes for the food and when it came out it was just terrible.

We found a camera but didn't want to leave it there cause we want to return it to its owner. If you lost your camera 6/6/12 at the pool by the beach (salt pool) contact me and I will sent it back to you 713-743-5275. But you need to be able to describe it, at least what brand it is hehehe. Thanks, Sam

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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Thank SamDungDo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palladium-Royal, Community Manager at Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 21 June 2012

Dear Customer:

We are pleased that your overall stay was satisfactory. Sorry did not like the Bamboo Restaurant. We will work on improving every effort in this point.

Thank you very much for informing us about the camera. If we know the owner will let you know.

Regards,

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