Hotel Riu Santa Fe

Address: Camino Viejo a San Jose, Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos, Baja California, 23410, Mexico | 3 star resort
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This 3 star resort, located on Camino Viejo a San Jose, Cabo San Lucas, is near Cabo San Lucas Tours, Museo Arqueologico de la Costa Grande, Gold Coast Adventure, and Casa Marina.
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          TravelPod Member ReviewsHotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas

          Reviewed by stephanie-trips

          Riu Resort

          Reviewed Oct 31, 2012
          by (7 reviews) , Canada Flag of Canada


          This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of

          Reviewed by alicerosemiller


          Reviewed May 20, 2012
          by (1 review) Auckland , New Zealand Flag of New Zealand

          My friend and I stayed here for a week in May and absolutely fell in love! The hotel is immaculate, the staff are great, the food is yummy and it has a perfect location.

          I really could talk all day about this hotel -

          - Pools galore, there are so many it's hard to choose which one you want to go!
          - Housekeeping ladies were great, if you're lucky they'll leave you an animal of some sort made out of towels! We had an elephant :)
          - Food - stick to the buffet, we dined at the Asian restaurant once and vowed never to go back. Stick to the buffet hall as the food is fantastic and there is something to please everyone! Breakfast is AMAZING. Fresh juices are a plenty.
          - Location - short $12USD cab ride to the mariner/city centre.
          - Parasailing is available right out front. It's a bargain so I recommend you try.
          - Drinks are all free as it's an All Inclusive, I don't drink so they catered to me very well, my traveling buddy had a lot of the drinks on offer, the only thing we would say is that they are very sweet!

          I could say more but you really need to go for yourselves, the hotel is perfect, they will look after your every request no matter how big or small. Mexico is such a beautiful country and Cabo is a place where you never want to leave!

          Hurry up and book this hotel!

          Cabo San Lucas
          Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

          This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of

          Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas

          False Advertising Spoken Here


          We were there for a week over Thanksgiving.

          How do I put this... false advertising would sum it up. I have never seen so many people complain to the front desk -- whose response was "feel free to send an email to our headquarters in Spain when you get home." After speaking with the front desk manager for the third time, he promised to have the general manager address the problems. That phone call never came, as I'm sure they were inundated with other more immediate complaints.

          This is no 5 star hotel. It is built adjacent to the Palace (a MUCH nicer hotel), but seems to have been constructed for the convention crowd. Their website claims to have 5 restaurants. A note to those looking to make the distinction between a "restaurant" and a "buffet" ; you are served at your table in one and get your own from a cold array of pre cooked entrees in the later. They have one restaurant (the steak house), but good luck in getting into it as you have to make reservations for each of the 5 facilities. The buffets relied on "heat lamps" to keep the food warm, which was largely unsuccessful.

          Unlike the Palace, there are no elevators in most of the complex, so be careful in asking for an upper floor room. The pool facilities were good, with a great view of the arches across the bay. The bar staff was friendly and hospitable. I talked with several couples who claimed to have personal items and wallets go missing from their rooms, however, safes are available in each room and we used ours. The chain boasts several true 5 star resorts the were verified by travellers who had stayed at them with glowing reports. Unfortunately, they too agreed that the Santa Fe is a step child to that standard.

          Take the cheapest room next door at the Palace and save yourself the pain of wishing you did.

          Riu Santa Fe- Two Thumbs Down!


          I love Cabo and have always had a great time with the hotels, but this one has MANY glitches to work out, in order for them to be successful. When we arrived at the Riu (Nov. 23-28, 2007), the check-in system was a complete disaster! There's one desk manager who sits behind a glass wall, assigning rooms, with all the receptionists running to him. We paid for an ocean view room and received a "partial ocean view room," where you could see the ocean if you stood in the corner of the balcony and cocked your head! When Oliver, the front desk manager, was confronted about the room, he said there was a misunderstanding and we paid for a "partial ocean view room" vs. a "full ocean view room," which wasn't even an option when booking the vacation!! He gave us another room and said it was an ocean view, but it was a view of the sand dunes! An hour later, we were told that we had to pay an additional $400 to upgrade to a "full ocean view room!" We did and the view was worth it, however we had no light bulbs in the bathroom or closet. About 4 different people came to the room, trying to figure out which light bulbs we needed. The shower light bulb went out, after 2 days and after telling numerous people about it, it never got fixed. Housekeeping doesn't come to clean the room, until 4pm, when you're just getting back from the beach! Don't hang your towels over any clothes because they took my swimsuit when they took the towel. That was a fiasco to retrieve, but managed to get it back a few hours later. Sixty Dollars was stolen out of my purse in the room, the first day and when I walked into the room, the male Housekeeper was extremely nervous. The hotel made us file a security report and told us that they would investigate it and they found nothing! They said the housekeeper was nervous because it was his first day at work! Unbelievable.

          If you have a bad back or leg, this resort isn't for you. You must walk at least 10 min. to get anywhere. It was a 10 min. walk from the ocean view building, number 7, to the main dining room!

          The food got old after 3 days. It was all the same things and lacked creativity and flavor. Finding a place to eat at 10:30am, was virtually impossible. They don't do a good job of letting you know which restaurants are open and at what times you can get food at them. For example, breakfast is only held at one place, the main dining room, and that closes at 10:30am. If you want to eat between 10:30-12noon, you're out of luck, unless you go to the Sports Bar to eat nachos or sandwiches.

          The reservation system for dinner is HORRIBLE. If you want to eat anywhere else besides the main dining room, you MUST make a reservation and that has to be done between 11am-4pm, the day of, IN PERSON!!! So, that takes away from your day at the beach! They have two seatings for each of the restaurants and by 11:30am, the lady said every single restaurant was booked! How could they possibly be full in 30 min. and not even the whole resort was booked?! Needless to say, we got the last reservation at the first seating. When we arrived at the Steak House for dinner, it wasn't even half full! They only had set up a 1/4 of the restaurant! That needs to change to accommodate the guests!!!!

          If you want to lie on a chair on the beach, be prepared to be hassled by the vendors trying to get you to "make a deal!" It was horrible, you couldn't even hold a conversation without being hovered around numerous vendors. Other hotels on the beach, which I have stayed at, have it roped off, so the vendors can't stare over your face, when you're trying to sleep.

          They call the Riu Santa Fe a 5 star, but I'd give it a 2 star. There's NO room service and if you want coffee in the morning, you need to walk to the main dining room to help yourself and by the time you bring it back to your room, it's cold, because of the walking distance. There's not even a coffee pot in the room! I also noticed when you have a problem or need something, all the employees would tell you to go to the Riu Palace, which is next door.t My sunglasses broke and they said, "Sorry, go to the Palace to get them fixed." They ran out of cigarettes and they said we'd have to go to the Palace, but when they ran out of Vodka, they couldn'go to the Palace!

          Not ready for opening!


          Nov.24th thru Nov.30th,2007

          Upon arriving to the Santa Fe, good thing we had up graded to the so called "Ocean View" room-that means you get an elevator in your building. All other buildings DO NOT HAVE one!

          When checking in, they really have no system. They search through a lot of paper work and Rob, our check-in man, gave us all wrong info about the resort. From check-in to going to our room, we carried our bags to the end of the resort to only find that there is 1 elevator in the whole complex...good thing we had upgraded!

          The room was nice(compared to the Palce..will go there later!) and for a fully stocked bar and refrig-NO!

          The TV chanels there were good-more english speaking stations than at the Palace.

          As for the Restaurants....less to be desired! Everyday you are to line up for reservations between 11-4(kind of like flying on Southwest Airlines) to book your dinner for that evening. The problem is at 11:05 they tell you all restaurants are booked. Knowing that the resort is not even 1/4 full, we questioned this policy. Of course, the little girl taking reservations can hardly speak a word of English and says she will get the manager...MANAGER is no where to be found. People were irritated and getting more mad by the minute. Of course, you can go to the pay all this $ to eat BUFFET!

          So after many frustrating attempts, we called who we had booked through(US Airways) to have us moved to the Palace...BIG MISTAKE!!!!

          Mildew rooms, with god-awful orange blankets on a bed that looked and felt like a roll-away. The couch in the room looked as though many things had been done on it and of course, not clean!

          As for the food at the Palce...okay! Drink wise at both resorts...the Mexicans have no idea how to make drinks! But maybe because of all the bees flying around them!

          The shows at both are just fillers and try to take your mind off of staying at either DUMP!

          We go to Cabo at lot and thought "Why not try the all-inclusive"---NEVER AGAIN!!! It is worth every penny to stay at The Hilton!!!

          I would definately give this a 0 rating!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          Dangers at RIU Cabo San Lucas Sante Fe, BCS, Mexico


          Our experience at RIU, Cabo San Lucas, Sante Fe was awful. Like most guests, we had to wait 8 hrs. for a room, since only one person assigned rooms, by hand. The 4 story building, had double stair cases, which meant we had to climb an 8 story building, since there were no elevators. The bellman, and, I collapsed. Everyone demanded room reassignments, which took hours, to days. Calls to the front desk were unanswered, or put indefinetely on hold. The desk manager, Oliver, stated all problems were caused by our travel agents. He never kept promises, and, argued with everyone. Staff at all levels complained that he and the Director were incompetent. The Director refused to talk to me, after I made 6 attempts. I contacted RIU corporate offices, from the hotel, and they never replied. Many loud arguments occured at the desk with demands for money back due to overcharging. After being there a couple of days, I became very sick. We never left the property. It was obvious that glasses, dishes, etc., were being rinsed in local tap water, and reused dirty water. My wife was covered by bites from the swarms of mosquitoes in our rooms. The safe was broken, never fixed. Complaints to the hotel and RIU Corporation have been ignored. Addiltionally, it was apparent that Oliver(management) had anti-Amcerican attitudes which I directly experienced.

          Nice but....


          My wife and I just returned from a stay at the Santa from 11/15 - 11/22. Upon arrival we were promptly and politely greeted by the front desk personal. We had booked an ocean view room and were very pleased with the room that we were given. It was in building 7 with an excellent view of lands end, the beach and the pool. It appears that we were lucky though as a number of people that we talked to who booked ocean view rooms were a little dissapointed with what they received.

          Our first impressions of the hotel were good as the lobby is very inviting everything was very neat and clean, I was afraid that there might still be some work going on due to how recently it had opened. We did discover right away though that the hotel layout did not seem to be totally clear. We were given our room number and pointed in the general direction of where we should be. It turned out to be a little adventure as we wondered through a few other buildings looking for short cuts that didn't work out. Bottom line...stick to the sidewalks and expect to do some walking if you are near the beach. We also had to call the front desk an hour and a half after we arrived and remind them to deliver our luggage to our room.

          The food at the buffet and specialty restauraunts was the same every day and lacked quality as well as flavor. I suspect that this maybe due to resource issues within the hotel and people still learming their jobs. All of the staff at the hotel that we dealt with were very friendly and helpful so I do appreciate that.

          Please note that we have stayed at a number of RIU hotels and feel this one does not quite measure up to the standards that we have seen in the past. We are not usually very picky and we did enjoy our stay but would really have appreciated a little better food quallity.

          The bottom line for me right now would be if you get a good deal and do not mind some imperfections I think you will have a good time here. If you are looking for a typical RIU hotel you might want to wait a few months until they work the bugs out.

          I will post some pics shortly.

          November 16-21 RIU Santa Fe


          We arrived @ the Riu Sante Fe and were immediately struck by the beauty of the lobby. The staff was quite friendlly. The line to check in was relatively short but it took the staff over an hour and a half to get the line moving. I believe that lack of english speaking staff accounted for this long wait. Once checked in they give you an actual key which was very surprising considering it was difficult to carry around

          Our reservation called for a room with a partial ocean view - however once in rooms - no ocean view... My husband went back to the front desk to inform the staff and I stayed in the room enjoying a Corona on the terrace. My husband finally returned and said that they apologized and were sending over someone IMMEDIATELY to move us and our luggage. After an hour wait we took it upon ourselves to take our own luggage (no easy feat down tiled flights of stairs - no elevator) I'm thinking if we waited we would still be in that room 4 days later :)

          Our final room was very nice with a beautiful view of the ocean and the Arch. The cruise ships coming in also made for a beautiful site.

          The room was lovely and very clean. Brand spankiing new. We had plenty of towels and the room was cleaned every day.

          We were in building #7 so the walk to the dining halls was quite long... the good side to this is no matter what you ate - you burned off the calories with the marathon walk. The noise level at night for sleep was actually quiet - but then again the hotel was maybe 30% full. I couldn't begin to imagine what it would be with a full house. I'm sure mayhem

          The food was excellent - waiters lovely - very professional. You wanted for nothing.

          We were at the pool almost every day... also gorgeous. Yes, the pool was cold but felf refreshing after the heat of the sun. The service poolside was excellent but again the area was almost empty. I loved having the place almost to ourselves. :) The bathrooms were far removed from the pool and tiles slippery when wet.

          The beaches were not good for swimming - so if you're a beach lover this is NOT the place for you. I went in and the undertow was quite severe.... plus after 2pm water loaded with jellyfish. So again if you want to swim in the ocean - forget it.... unless you walk minimum 15 minutes to another beach.

          We travelled into San Jose for the day... did a little shopping, visited Churches... very nice town. People super friendly and not harrassing you to buy their goods.

          Entertainment limited but again the RIU is new and just starting out.... I'm sure once they get their feet wet the FEW kinks in the system will be worked out!

          I would NOT recommend this hotel to Seniors unless they are in superb shape - nor anyone in a walker, crutches, etc...etc.. as the walking on the cobblestone is difficult, plus, the looooooooog walk from rooms to restaurants, beach, pool, etc.

          While a stunning place to look at it definetly has a College campus feel.

          All in all I would give it a 8 out of 10!

          Brand New RIU


          Just returned from the Grand Opening of the RIU Santa Fe in Cabo San Lucas Mexico. It is a beautiful hotel, with a beautiful view of Lands End. Food and service would be the biggest issues with the hotel.

          Located near the town of Cabo San Lucas, the RIU Sante Fe has two sections, one located behind the RIU Palace, and a section adjacent to the Palace on the Beach.


          Rooms in the back section are arranged hacienda style around a very large, beautiful pool area. Lots of deck loungers with cushions and palapas surround the freeform pool. There is pool bar, and swim up bar located in this section.

          Rooms in the beach section are arranged around 4 other pools - 2 of which are pool bars with built in tables and chairs so you never have to leave the bar!! The other two pools have built in loungers so keep you refreshed on those hot Mexican days.

          The main beach pool has a spectacular view of the Arch, with its infinity edge and a large fountain that shoots upward, and when the winds blow, be careful not to get caught downwind!! There are lots of chairs and umbrellas conveniently pre arranged. At this time, there are plenty of chairs to go around, but I can see a potential problem when the hotel is at capacity.

          You are given a pool towel card for each person and if you lose it, they charge you. You exchange cards for towels daily near the beach pool.


          There is a beautiful long beach but the sand is a little course.

          There are no palapas or umbrellas on the beach itself.

          You can request one of the hotel personnel to bring a chair to the beach for you, but there is no shade available and it gets very hot.

          There is a steep incline to the waters edge, twhich continues in the water. You cannot wade very far from the edge as it drops off quickly. There is also a strong undertow and the red flags are always up. The RIU did have a lifeguard on duty for the few people on the beach.

          You can walk up the beach about 10-15mins to a designated swimming area if you want to swim in the ocean. The water was comfortable and refreshing.

          There are kayaks available free of charge at the hotel beach, but you better be strong enough to handle the currents.

          Jetskis are available at an extra charge, as is parasailing and fishing. Water taxis are available to take you to lovers beach near the arch, or to the marina.

          The other thing to be cautious of are the horse droppings that get bburied in the sand. Be careful, they're not rocks!!

          There are not many beach vendors, and the ones that do appear were courteous and respectful.


          The main hotel lobby is large and airy, with lots of seating areas. The front desk personnel could use some more training, and RIU would be best served if they had more English speaking front desk agents. Service could have more efficient.

          I find it odd that after such a large expenditure on the hotel, they have opted for the old fashioned door keys for the rooms. This is a little annoying considering it is attached to a large square block

          keychain that is a nuisance to carry around. No thought was given to the security issue with the room number prominently displayed on the the plastic keychain and on the key itself!! Additional keys have to be requested and not offered.

          An open air fountain lined corridor leads to the courtyard where you will find the 3 restaurants (1 Italian, 1 Japanese, 1 Buffet) to your right. The Sports bar, Theatre with Bar, Disco and 2 bars to your left. Straight ahead are the hotels 2 shops that sell sundries and souveniers. There is also a small jewellry store and cigar counter.

          The internet cafe is located in the sports bar - so you can keep in touch with loved ones back home. Cheaper than the phone. There are pools tables, and air hockey tables available for a fee!

          The disco opens after the nightly entertainment which was adequate at best. Again, its a new hotel, so there is room for improvement.

          Went for a pedicure at the Spa, and my friend had a massage. Not overly impressed either. Inferior quality for the price.

          The gym is small. Nice view overlooking the pool. There were no towels or water (this could change) so bring your own. 3 out of the 5 treadmills did not work. There are 2 bicycles and 2 cross trainers and a minimal selection of equipment, but enough to adequately work all parts of the body.There were no freeweights. The equipments was modern and brand new.

          Car rentals and tours can be booked in the main lobby.

          A cab to town is about $10usd.

          There are no sidewalks, so walking to town is difficult.


          Rooms located in the back section of the hotel are on three levels. There are no elevators. Be sure to arrange for someone to carry your bags upstairs if you can't manage them yourself. The hallways are dim at night, and the doorways of each room are in alcoves. I felt a little uncomfortable with this setup.

          Rooms located in the beach section of the hotel are on four floors

          and they do have an elevator.

          The rooms are decorated in a rather monotone beige and chocholate tone. A little colour would have been nice. Lots of tiles make for a clean room. A/C and ceiling fans keep the room cool (when they worked..I'm sure this was just a glitch) No screens on the sliding doors to the balcony. Some rooms get more mosquitoes than others so this would have been a bonus. TV with satellite and lots of spanish channels. Phone had no instruction with how to contact anyone. (I'm sure that's coming too...) Small clock radio in each room.

          A minifridge with water, soda and beer is restocked every other day. There 4 liquor dispensors in the bar over the fridge. Ice machines are located on the main floor of each block of rooms.

          Our bath towels were limited to 2, although we asked for extras, they never arrived. Others bragged of having 6 towels, so I'm guessing this will level out in time.


          5 restaurants ( Italian, Japanese(Zashila),

          Buffet (BahaCalifornia) Mexican (La MIssion), Steakhouse (Torote) and a Sports bar with snacks-nachos, pre cooked hot dogs and hamburgers that you must nuke, sandwiches and fruit.

          This area would have to be my biggest disappointment. Although there was an adequate food selection and you certainly will not go hungry, there is no variety day to day and very little flavour.

          The a la carte restaurants, are not reallllly al a carte. Everything on the menu, is served buffet style. So you can order it off the menu, or go get it yourself! You cannot get a coffee in the Italian Restaurant. You cannot order alchol only wine or beer in any restaurant, so bring your drink with you.

          You must make reservations in advance for the a la carte restaurants, and this is not very well organized.

          This is a beautiful hotel if you like large, mass market all inclusive hotels.

          I would have expected more from a 5 star hotel.

          The RIU Palace by comparison, has better quality furniture and decor, but the food is comparable, the service a little better but the price is higher.

          Tourists Beware!!!


          1) Chemicals (DDT) were sprayed in front of guests for bug problems they were having. 2) If renting a car, watch out -- there are no signs guiding you in. You have to turn into a dirt road to enter. 3) Gift shop purchases must be in cash only- cannot be charged to the room, nor can you use a credit card. Why? We were told, "That's the way it is." (And I do speak fluent Sapnish!) 4) If you want to eat at the other restaurants, other than the buffet, guests must WALK-UP & make a reservation; you cannot phone it in! 5) Be prepared for a LONG WALK, as the resort is huge! 6) Corny & mediocre "entertainment" 7) No ATM machines, staff don't even know what they are when questioned. 8) I slipped on their wet pavement & asked for a bandage, only to be directed to the gift shop to purchase one!!! 9) Told by a "manager" that this hotel falls under the "classic" level, for families and people on Spring Break, vs. the RIU Palace, which is for the more "elegant travelers"! (So much for PR!!) 10) No room service available; told to stay at the RIU Palace instead if we wanted this amenity.



          Well the resort has just opened. We have come over from Australia. Currently at the resort now. Everything is above expectation. Staff are excellent and can't do enough to please. Food is pretty good- not 5 star but still really nice. Bars are great and everywhere. Only Corona available- which isn't a bad thing but a bit of variety would be good. View is awesome we are staying in an oceanfront and would highly recommend. Althought the worst view is probably the main pool, which is still great. As everything is brand new it is all perfect. Well back to the bar.

          New is New...


          Great place in a few months.Alot of the staff and regular workers are learning on the job.Not only how to cook, to also speak in english.Staff was super nice and at times trying too hard.We had an oceanview room which was spectacular.Nice room with a good size patio to enjoy the bay.Pool in front great but cold-unheated, the ocean seemed warmer.No restrooms in front pool area- really Going to be Bad when it becomes crowded, you have to walk way up to the resturant. I already can see people slipping from wet swim suits big time.Be prepared to walk alot place real spread out. They need a place to get coffee in morning for the people in Building # 7. Man thats a walk. The so called sports Bar needs a Sattlite Dish, Spanish soccer on NFL Game day does not cut it.Internet facilities reasonable 3 Bucks 15 min. - 8 for an Hour.Pooltable 3 bucks a game- WHOA come-on lower that.I would go back beautiful place..Maybe just wait for a bit..RV

          TripAdvisor Reviews Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas

          4.00 of 5 stars Excellent

          Travel Blogs from Cabo San Lucas


          A travel blog entry by madisonbutler on Jul 08, 2016

          1 photo

          Madisonbutler stayed here on Jul 8, 2016 during their trip titled: Cabo San Lucas.

          Buenos Dias Hommes!

          A travel blog entry by 0wley on Jan 27, 2015

          4 photos

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          Scuba Diving, Day III

          A travel blog entry by christinakrawec on Jan 03, 2015

          ... the year people really can make it when the water is lower.)

          When we made it to our dive location, we jumped in the water and started our dive. It was so fun. We were right at the edge of the peninsula and went about 60 feet down into the ocean. There were also sea lions in the water, and they swam near us, curious about why these big black fish were going near them. My instructor, Ylenia, warned us that sometimes the sea lions like to play with humans and bump ...

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          2 comments, 19 photos

          ... the horse-racing capital of the World. Ken work's at the Totalizator at Keeneland – a beautiful racecourse where the annual sales held, are the worlds largest and most prestigious Thoroughbred auctions. A quaint Kentucky County with a love of Bourbon – I counted 19 distilleries in the State of Kentucky.

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          Cabo - party central !

          A travel blog entry by dougo on Apr 13, 2014

          55 photos

          ... He said no more as I left the shop.

          Honestly …

          Into and out of more shops and eventually found something I like but I didn’t have enough money. The impertinent shop keeper told me to get the rest of the money from my husband. I said he doesn’t have any money. “Yes he does” the shopkeeper replied…”Not US dollars” I said. I called Doug over and asked him – knowing full well ...

          Traveler Photos Hotel Riu Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas

          Cabo San Lucas
          Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
          Santa Fe
          Cabo San Lucas, Mexico