Rui Palace Cabo San Lucas Review

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Living in Southern California you would think that we get enough of the sunshine and not make such a big point of following it on vacation, but the opposite is true. For the most part, we are all sun worshippers. We also love our long weekends. As such, being able to jump on a two-hour flight and be in a beach paradise so quickly, is pretty tempting to us.  Thankfully there is Cabo as we call it. Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos, they are all Cabo to us So Cal locals.

Last month we stayed at Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas and had a blast! Here is a review of the resort from the perspective of a family with kids of all ages!

The Resort

The resort is pretty impressive and located where there is a spectacular view of the Arch Of Cabo San Lucas. As a teen, I vacationed on a couple of cruises that visited the area and we took an excursion to see the Arch. The view from the resort was just as good as that boat ride from long ago!

One important thing to know about this resort is that it is split up between the party and the quiet side. For us, the quiet side was the better choice. The party side wasn’t out of control parties by any means, it was just loud. We like music, but we also value relaxation time on vacation so we tested both sides out with accommodations on both sides and the quiet side was for us.

The view above was from our balcony on the party side. There were more people over here and the music was going all the time. They even had little contests going on with trivia and such. Emmy won a round and enjoyed the bragging rights!

This is the pool over on the quiet side. Perfect for those wanted to relax and take in the view or with children who enjoy a more mellow atmosphere. We flip-flopped back and forth between the pools.

The water in Cabo is aqua colored and so relaxing. The weather is more desert than tropical too, so it is a dry heat that is tempered by the ocean breeze. 

The lobby is open-air with all sorts of colors displayed throughout. We really enjoyed the festive feeling created with the beaming lights.

There are pretty strong rip tides in Cabo so although the water looked beautiful, the strong current and surf meant that there was no ocean swimming. Nobody missed it with the huge pools at the resort and the beach to relax on!

We never left the resort because there was no need to. Being at an all-inclusive means that everything is taken care of. We lock our passports and wallets away and grab our key and some tip money and that is it. If you love the shopping in Mexico, you will be happy to know that there are some very mellow beach vendors that are pretty well known with the regular, returning guests that come to the beach to sell. 

Emmy, of course, bought another new hat, like she does wherever we visit, and an inexpensive kite. The kite wasn’t one that was going to last a lifetime, but she really had fun flying it on the beach during our stay!

During whale season (December to April) you are almost guaranteed (from what locals told us) to see migrating whales passing right off the coast. We just missed the whales, but we saw other creatures that were pretty cool too! Manta Rays!

Our first afternoon at Riu Palace we heard really strange flopping sounds coming from the direction of the ocean. We all thought it was an odd sound and a pretty strong sound too. We didn’t think much of it until the next morning when we saw pods of Manta Rays right off the coast leaping into the air and then bellyflopping down. We finally realized that they were the ones making all the noise. We headed down to the beach to watch them jumping and noticed we weren’t the only ones watching them. Others thought it was pretty cool to see too!

If you have been on a cruise with a stop in Cabo, this picture will give you an idea where the resort is, close to the downtown area, which is well situated if you want to head into town and enjoy the local area more. Or you can be like us and just stay in the resort and enjoy all the amenities! 

The Food

Food is always an important aspect of a vacation, right? Well, you will be happy to know that the food at Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas is great! We were most impressed by the huge selection. Our favorite meals were enjoyed at the buffets.

Each night the buffet had a different theme. Mexico night was, of course, a hit and when one of the chef’s noticed that Pete was looking around for cheese enchiladas, she made him a fresh plate of them and even delivered them to our table. It was the little things like that, that had the most lasting impact on us.

Well, that and how they helped us to celebrate each and every moment! Emmy loved that they invited her to get up with the band to sing and dance! 

Everyone raved about the fresh desserts and how many there were at every meal. Desserts for days…

Maddie and I were particularly in love with the coffee bar! From latte’s to coffee and ice cream floats, everything was really good! 

For lunch, we found the best seats in the house were at the San Jose restaurant which is right above the ocean. On our visit, it was open for dinner each night as a Mexican restaurant and for lunch serving Italian food.

Breakfast was a lot of coffee for Pete and me and fresh fruit for the girls. There was also a traditional American breakfast with eggs every which way.

We did what we normally do at resorts and find a server and stick with them the whole time for dinner. Then each night we had a table ready and waiting for us. One night we had planned to try one of the a la carte restaurants, but we just couldn’t bring ourselves to do it because our regular table was just so perfect!

If an adult drink is something that you look forward to, you will be very happy to know that the drinks are good here… and that we already have the perfect spot four you to enjoy them. Right off the lobby is a bar on one end and the coffee bar on the other. Head over to the bar and order your drink and then you can enjoy it on the patio…

Overlooking the resort and the ocean. Seriously Pete and I escaped up here every single day. It was heaven!

The Accommodations

We had connecting rooms so this is a picture of mine and Pete’s room, the girls had a matching room except their two queen beds were separated and ours were pushed together. 

We each had a balcony too…

The bathrooms looked like they were newly remodeled and we all loved the rainmaker showerheads.

Each room comes with a stocked minibar and refrigerator. Since this is an all-inclusive resort, even the drinks are included.

Since we were traveling with kids everyone went out of their way to add little kid-friendly touches to our experience too! There was also a kid’s club that for the first time in forever, Emmy didn’t even get a chance to go to. There were too many things to do as a family, but we plan to check it out next time! 

We really enjoyed our time in Cabo and can’t wait to return. 

Are you taking a summer vacation?

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog, It's a Lovely Life®! For the past decade, she has vacationed over 150 days a year with her family. She is a vegan, and loves being by the water, spending time with her children, husband, 2 Shih Tzus and Cat.


  • We must go there with the kids! My husband and I love going on vacations with the kids to warm places like this. We’ve never made it to Cabo.

  • The sun and beach views were so amazing who needs great food and accommodations It looked like you had a great time and got a little taste of everything they had to offer.

  • Wow! This resort looks like it is straight out of a postcard. It looks like you all had a great time. Those enchiladas look amazing, I will have to try them out if I am ever in Cabo!

  • This is really my definition of heaven. Plus they’re kid friendly! Hold on, I’m booking my tickets right now! But seriously though, it looks gorgeous and like you and your family had a wonderful time!

  • What a fantastic-looking resort with an amazing swimming-pool! Sounds like a perfect place for families, so kid-friendly. Lovely photos too!

  • I have stayed at the Riu in Panama and they have good service but this one in Cabo looks incredible. Seems you guys had so much fun now I need ot add Cabo to my list of must visit soon.

  • Such a pretty resort!! Cabo is so beautiful, judging from your pictures. The aqua blue of the water is gorgeous! Looks like you all had a wonderful getaway.

  • Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas looks like it was a beautiful destination, even though you guys have CA to compare it to! Your family looked like they had a marvelous time (your youngest daughter is so cute wearing the hat).
    Your pictures overall look so awesome!

  • What a gorgeous place for a family getaway! We absolutely love Cabo and the all inclusive aspect makes it all so easy and relaxing.

  • Sounds like a spectacular getaway! I liked that they have the resort divided so that you can go for the party scene – or not. For my family, we’d want mostly the quiet side, but it’s also good to know you can venture out to the party side a little bit too.

  • I’m sold on the landscaping and views alone! I like that the buffet features a different theme every night. There’s nothing like good food variety ????.

  • It really looks an awesome place to stay for Vacation It really look beautiful and I love all your photo

  • It seems to be so amazing place and beautiful photographs. WE are planning to go for vacations, sure i will consider this place.

  • Awesome hotel and great family activity as always. I have never been to San Lucas, but I feel like I already have, just by looking at the pictures.

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