The Riu Emerald Bay Resort

The Riu Emerald Bay all-inclusive resort has just about everything you could possibly need to enjoy your Mazatlan holiday, including loads of food and drink, a gorgeous stretch of beach and fun daily activities.

When the Riu Emerald Bay stakes its claim as the only 24-hour all-inclusive resort in Mazatlan, Mexico, it’s not kidding.

Sure, there are restaurants and bars aplenty, including a sports bar that’s open every hour of the day (and night), and snacks/light meals and alcoholic drinks.

But what really hit home for me when it came to the Riu’s 24-hour all-inclusiveness was the fact that my hotel room (and every other hotel room in the building) had its own liquor case with jiggers of full bottles of rum, vodka and gin.

And, of course, my mini-fridge had all the fixings for mixed drinks of my own choosing (pop, water and club soda—along with a couple of cervesas).

Truth be told, I didn’t even use the in-room alcohol during my stay at the Riu. But like a security blanket, it was just nice knowing it was there.

But the Riu Emerald Bay, set on a vast stretch of beach in Nuevo Mazatlan (New Mazatlan), is much more than a constant flow of booze.

Inside the Rooms

Say a silent thank-you to the Riu’s architects. Here, each of the 716 guest rooms boasts a view of the dazzling Pacific Ocean (guests on the first few floors get a view of the pool area, but still—it’s technically a water view, right?).

The rooms have the full gamut of amenities you’d expect:

• Central air

• Satellite TV

• Hair dryer and other bathroom sundries

• Balcony or terrace

• Easily programmed in-room safe

Those looking to splurge can opt for a suite, which include upgraded bathrooms (hydro-massage tub, separate shower, bidet), a separate, sunken living area, walk-in closet and a massive terrace with a spacious Jacuzzi.

Activities ‘Round the Clock

There is zero chance of boredom at the Riu Emerald Bay.

With a slew of (free!) activities that change up daily, there always seems to be something new to try. Think Spanish lessons, poolside bingo and beach futbol (soccer), among many other options.

Of course, beach bums like me will have no issues filling up their days.

Strolling along Playa Las Brujas is a joy, as is frolicking in the Pacific’s crashing waves. Or stake your spot on one of the Riu’s plentiful beach loungers and curl up with a juicy read.

And if you simply can’t unplug completely, fear not—there is fast and free wi-fi throughout the Riu lobby.

The Bottom Line

The Riu is about 12 kms from Mazatlan’s centre (including the Golden Zone and the Historic District).

But taxis and pulmonias—the souped-up golf carts that whiz around the city—are just a call away if you feel like exploring the Pearl of the Pacific.

But at a place like the Riu Emerald Bay, you could easily remain on the property for your entire holiday. Really, really easily.

Room rates at the Riu start at $51 per night, per person (based on double occupancy), and includes all meals, all snacks, all drinks, activities and sports, as well as airport transfers.

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Allison MacDonald

Allison MacDonald has explored Cuba, Arizona and the Bahamas, among other locales, none hold a candle to her native Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia.


How about the crime that is rampant in Mexico? Mazatlan is no stranger to violence and dangers.


Hi Joseph,

It's fair to question the safety of any destination you're travelling to. Mexico certainly has had loads of negative press, and violence is up overall in the country.

However, having just returned from Mazatlan in early November, I can personally tell you that I felt safe here and spoke with many locals about the situation.

Mazatlan is located in Sinaloa, which has seen an increase in violence over the years. However, most of this violence has been in the capital city of Culiacan, and another city called Tepic. Both of these cities are more than two hours away from Mazatlan.

Of course travelling smart is key in Mazatlan (as it is in any city, really): don't travel alone, avoid wearing flashy jewelry, don't flash huge amounts of money, etc.

Travellers should visit places that they are comfortable with. Whether that includes Mazatlan, or any place in Mexico for you, Joseph, is entirely up to you.

All I can say from personal experience is that I felt safe in Mazatlan. The city is beautiful and the people are very friendly.

Thanks for your comment!



what bubble do you live in joseph...? thanks for the travel advisory, your knowlege and travel savvy is much appreciated.


I came across this webpage while researching the Riu Emerald Bay resort. I'm going there at the end of April and wanted to know more about this place. I am glad to say that reading this had definately made my excitement skyrocket. Thanks!

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