We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great vay-k in Aruba's Riu Palace Apr 20-27” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Aruba

Best prices for -
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 8 more sites!
Save Saved
You added Hotel Riu Palace Aruba to your Saves list
Hotel Riu Palace Aruba
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   J.E. Irausquin Boulevard 79 | Palm Beach - Palm Beach, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba (Formerly Aruba Grand Beach Resort)   |  
Hotel website
  |  
Hotel packages
  |  
Hotel deals
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Early Winter Specials
Ranked #19 of 23 Hotels in Palm - Eagle Beach
Toronto, Canada
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Great vay-k in Aruba's Riu Palace Apr 20-27”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2013

Let me start by saying that I've been to many AI resorts in Dominican, Cuba, Jamaica and Mexico, and for the first time, Aruba.

All are a little different, each with its advantages, depending on what your preferences are.

Aruba, by its nature, is the best destination I've been to for certain things. The gorgeous beach, warm, clear water, proximity to safe walking/shopping/downtown - is by far the best i've experienced.

The RIU itself featured friendly staff, was very clean, and was the best food I've ever experienced at an AI. We stayed in the oldest building i believe (the one to the right as you walk down the central staircase) - it was simple, a little dated, but clean and had a fridge stocked with beer and in-room rum, vodka, scotch and water. We had an 8th floor beautiful ocean view - a tiny french balcony but we weren't there for that.

Everyone has a different take on this, but I feel better about tipping here and there. Friendly staff, of course, will become a tad friendlier and you'll generally get faster service at the bars. No surprise there. I should note though that without tipping , I didn't notice a significant drop in friendliness or service levels so kudos to the staff.

As a comparison, by far my favourite resort for room and resort layout was the Excellence in Cancun. Rooms were way above par (in room jacuzzi / walk in shower, large balcony,etc), and it was more spread out, meaning it was quieter, which i like. The RIU's design means everything's more centralized around the 1 pool, and it's therefore quite busy near the pool bar and fairly loud, particularly when larger groups and generally louder people decide they can be as obnoxious as they want, taking certain spots hostage for their stay, which is what occurred the week i was there Apr 20-27. One main group from Chicago dominated, much to the obvious chagrin of others. In fact, one of these group members commented to us that she's "apologizing in advance for her group". Nice. But here's my issue. And btw, trust me - i'm no teetotalling prude - I get that the poolbar will be livelier. But there's no real need to be constantly yelling and screaming drunkenly, or in one case, exposing one's junk in an attempt to be funny (it's true - a seemingly 'roided up dude actually did that - and there were kids nearby)

In any event, that isn't the fault of the resort, it's the thoughtlessness of the group.

Bu overall, a fantastic resort - here are a few more thoughts:

*If you want a shaded hut on the beach, you better get up about 7am to reserve it.

*If you're looking to see the island and want the security of a group but with some independence, go on a guided Jeep tour that you drive yourself.. You can also rent a Jeep and go it alone.

*I tried to book a Jeep tour but it was all sold out. I then opted to rent an ATV for the day from Melchor's - an off site operator near the super mall place about 5 minutes from the resort. It was by far the best excursion I've ever taken, but it may not be for you if you like the security of a group, and you like things a little less "rugged" (you need to drive on the main roads to get anywhere which may be intimidating for some). For me it was fantastic as I loved the freedom - it's nearly impossible to get lost since it's a small island (plus they provide a map), and I drove to Baby beach in the morning, and then to the california lighthouse in the afternoon. Rugged, beautiful and a hell of a lot of fun. I also stopped at a few non tourist spots/beaches in between. $100 for the entire day, plus $10 in gas to fill it back up. What a deal.

*I felt a bit crowded around the pool/beach, but that's just a preference. Some people like that type of critical mass

*Best food for me was Italian - went twice -excellent antipasto bar.

*No issues with ice/water, and buffet eats were top notch, with excellent produce, fruit and vegetables. (i personally ate about a thousand kiwi last week)

*It pains me a bit to see Dunkin Donuts, Wendy's and such, but I get it. Some folks like the familiarity of it I suppose.

*We went to The Sopranos Piano Bar about 5 minutes from the RIU. Was fantastic. Wish it wasn't branded that way, but i think one of the show's producers owns it or something.

*Ironically, you won't find Aloe products in the supermarkets the locals go to. It's a tourist thing I suppose. You can find it , however, in the new super mall place I mentioned near Melchor's ATV rental place.

Any questions for me, I'd be happy to answer!
r

Room Tip: Want an ocean view, get a high floor obviously!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

3,651 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    1,608
    1,132
    491
    223
    197
See reviews for
760
2,054
37
35
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (794)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Bayville, New Jersey
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

We had a wonderful week at this resort from3/3 to3/10 2013 .The Food is good at the buffet&at the Restaurants. Our Room was always cleaned and the service was great.The Beach was nice its always breezy to cool you off from the hot sun.

Room Tip: top floor building A we stayed in room1008
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nebraska
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

Riu Palace is a wonderful place to stay. We would definitely recommend this hotel. We were on the 9th floor and had a great view of the ocean. Each night we would go to the bar in the Lobby and get drinks and have a great talk with the bartender Freddy, who was very entertaining. As for the food, it was very good with a lot of variety.

There was only one person at customer service who wasn't very friendly but the rest of the staff was great.

The next time we come to Aruba - we are staying here.

Room Tip: Get a room facing the ocean on the 9th floor
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barrie, Canada
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

I just want to start off by saying not only is this hotel amazing, but so is Aruba!

WEATHER:
Firstly I will start with the weather... It was gorgeous out every single day! We were told that because the island is very small (16X6 roughly) if there is any bad weather it passes right over the island in about 20 minutes! Well during our whole stay from Monday april 22- monday april 29 it was pure sun out! It rained the last day we were there for about 20 minutes than looked like it never even rained ! So that is definitely a plus when booking to Aruba, you are pretty much guaranteed gorgeous amazing weather! More on the weather.. it is pretty breezy here, meaning that when you are laying on the beach or by the pool you are always refreshed by a nice breeze making it easier to burn ! So make sure you wear sunscreen even though the sun feels nice on your skin, speaking rom experience down there of course. Secondly the ocean and the pool are a little bit chilly! So when the sun does get covered by a cloud for .6 seconds, you do feel a little bit cold with the breeze and all! But that is really nothing to worry about! The sun is out literally all day, everyday! :)

HOTEL:
So next is hotel talk, I was a bit skeptical after reading reviews but I have no idea what people were talking about! The staff was amazing! Super friendly, nice and hilarious! No one was rude or anything! The hotel was nice & big that there was ALWAYS a place to sit on the beach or pool. We did notice a lot of people reserving chairs by the pool with their towel but we saw RIU people talking them off for people that were looking for seats. It was a little annoying just because we seen people reserve chairs at 8am and not come down to use them till 2pm. Honestly, just move their towels or ask a RIU employee to move them. But seriously though we didn't have to do this, we just witnessed it. There were plenty of seats by both the pool & beach!

ROOMS:
We lucked out & got an ocean view room in the main building! BEAUTIFUL! I also want to mention this, don't be fooled.. EVERY SINGLE ROOM AT THIS HOTEL HAS AN OCEANVIEW! There are no rooms facing the front of the building not towards the ocean if that makes sense. In the main building every single room is an oceanview. On the side buildings they are sideways so that every single room has a view of the ocean. On the main building you get a balcony with chairs, same with ONE hotel side. The other side you do get a balcony but it looked small & didn't have any seats on it. To be honest, you are barely in your room except to sleep & shower so the room isn't that big of a deal. But the full ocean view rooms in the main building are definitely a nice view!

FOOD:
Unfortunately we didn't try any of the a la carte restaurants. We heard they were okay, but we were happy with the selection of food at the buffet each day. The food was great, tons of selection! I am not too sure if we just went at a good time but there were honestly more empty seats than full. We never had any troubles finding seats at breakfast, lunch, dinner, the beach or pool.

BEACH:
The beach was very nice, turquoise water & white sand. Every hotel is on the same strip so if you walk the beach, there is a path, you can see all the other hotels. There are also various shops you can go into while walking the beach. Real stores & vendors! Another nice thing about the beach is that no one is harassing you while you are laying there! You can tan, swim, drink & relax!
Oh, another thing is there is no bar on the beach, so if you required a drink you would have to walk to the bar near the pool (20 steps), nothing to be worried about either! Back to beach talk, the sand & water were both nice, the sand had a ton of shells so if you are a shell picker you would definitely like this area!
This hotel is located right near a pier, which has a cigar shop, little souvenir shop, dunkin donuts, restaurant and bar which was pretty nice!

LANGUAGE:
This is a Dutch island so the languages they speak fluently are English, Spanish, Dutch and their own language called papimento, which is a mixture of french, spanish & english. If you only speak english or spanish you are totally fine coming here! :)

TRIPS:
So the trips we did was the Carrubean festival which is only every Thursday! Yes, Carrubean with a "u". This is such a fun trip! First they pick you up from your hotel at 5pm, than take you to dinner on the other side of the island (hotels located in orjanstead & restaurant in St. Nicholas... those are their only 2 towns) called Mama's which was authentic arubian food! Than later they take you downtown to watch a small concert with singers, dancers, and various performers. Than at the end there is a parade... which they let you walk in! This trip is exactly what tyou picture when you think of New Orleans and Mardi Gras, crazy costumes, music and people! Such a fun time! My boyfriend & I are only 21 & we enjoyed this excursion very much. We were on the trip with people 40+ who also enjoyed it, so this is a trip for all. It goes till 11pm so unless your children an stay up & like loud music i wouldn't recommend it!

The second trip we did was a jeep safari tour, i don't think i know one person that has been to Aruba & hasn't done this trip. You get to drive your own jeep (4 people) and you follow a tour guide who brings you to all the best spots in Aruba (beaches, pools, lighthouse, cliffs, etc) There is a half day & whole day version of the trip. The only difference between the 2 are the half day is 9-1 & the full day is 9-4.. the full day gets to have dinner & snorkel. So if you aren't into that definitely do the half day. We did the half day & found it was just perfect timing! The full day would have been to long for us. This trip is a must, you get to see so much of Aruba and is just amazing!

The last trip & probably one of the most fun was the Jolly Pirates swim, sand and snorkel trip. It was 9-1. It was a real pirate ship that took you to 3 different spots on the island to snorkel. The first one was Antilla, which is a WW2 shipwreck... this is nuts! To actually see this is so crazy, whie we were there, scuba drivers were also checking it out. It was pretty eerie to see, but none the less very cool. They also took you to 2 other locations to snorkel where there were 100000000s of fish, starfish etc. They feed you a nice lunch of chicken & ribs and than comes the best part. The rope swing! They have a swing you can swing off of the boat into the water! So fun!! This trip was filled with families, young & old couples! Definitely a trip for everyone!

SHOPPING:
This place has some serious shopping. For all you ladies, and men... who love to shop, you will love this place. Taking a taxi ($11) or city bus (2.30$) will get you downtown where all the luxury shopping is. Coach, Lousi Vuttion, GUESS, Aldo, Victoria Secret, every watch company you can think of, fine jewelry, CHANEL, Prada, etc... this place has all these stores PLUS MORE!

OVERALL:
Overall, amazing trip. Met some pretty amazing people & made amazing memories. After all a trip is what you make of it. With the friendly staff, nice weather and fact that you will not be working but on vacation instead should already put you in a good mood. But the drinks, tanning, sun & activities help & make it a memorable trip!

PS: everyone needs to try the miami vice drink (pina colada, strawberry & rum)- DELISH!
Happy vacationing everybody! If you have any questions, feel free to send me an email ! :)

Room Tip: Full oceanview rooms in the main building are definitely worth the extra $$, but every room has a pa...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2013

Just got back & it was excellent. Recommend the B building as it is newer, and has a balcony you can sit on with chairs (C block has Juliette balconies only). Would recommend that you ask for 3rd floor or higher as the first 2 floors were noisy because the wait staff rolled carts between the restaurants on the tile floor through the hallways. We were on the 6th floor in a Jr suite and it had a great view of the sea and pool, and was far enough away from the bar noise at night to not disturb us. Beds are hard but we asked for mattress pads after the first night, and they were great. Our housekeeper made towel sculptures for us which was appreciated. Excellent, fast, friendly service from everyone - best service we have ever had in a Caribbean resort.Very hot 90+ and sunny but the trade winds make it comfortable. We were up at 5:30 a.m. to ensure that we got a hut on the beach as they were claimed quickly everyday & without shelter, it becomes too hot to tolerate, but hey, sun is better than rain! Food was great - we tried all 4 specialty restaurants & the buffets & enjoyed everything. You have to book your specialty restaurant seating each morning. Best guacamole EVER at the Nautilus. Had a fabulous time on the Jolly Pirate - you have to try swinging off the deck! We also took out a Hobie boat and had fun sailing along the coast. Although all the beaches are public in Aruba, there were no vendors or hawkers bugging us, but it did get crowded the day the cruise ships docked and sent the passengers in buses to Palm Beach. We took the local bus into Oranjestad which was fun. Aruba is safe, clean & affluent & we did not have any concerns. We tipped our housekeeper, wait staff & bartender everyday because we were appreciative of the excellent service. Aruba really is "one happy island" and we would definitely return to this property, as I believe it is one of the few all-inclusive resorts on the island.

Room Tip: Block B is newer and has balconies you can sit on. We were on 6th floor, room 628 junior suite with...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Redding, Connecticut
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

We just returned from the Riu Palace and can't wait for our next visit. Our Junior Suites were clean and spacious and the balconies had dramatic views of the beach and the pool. We loved our housekeeper Paula and the rest of the Guest Service staff. The front desk staff was welcoming and helpful. We loved the buffet! There are so many food choices that we chose to go to the buffet most nights instead of a sit down meal. We can't say enough about our cocktail server Christian and Freddy the bartender. Ask him to dance for you with his wig on! We had no problems getting chairs at any time during the day on the beach or at the pool and there were four of us that wanted chairs together. The beach huts do go fast so you should try to get there early if you want shade but there are many palm trees that you can slide under for a little rest from the sun. Don't forget to head to the pool for Aqua Zumba at 4:00! It will not disappoint. Midnight nachos at the Sports Bar are a treat after a night of drinking tropical favorites- the guacamole is the best! The fitness center is small but suitable for a vacation. We suggest taking a run on the beach sidewalk to get yourself going in the morning. Take a day sail with the Jolly Pirates for some snorkeling and rope swinging into the beautiful water. Thank goodness for those trade winds that keep you cool while your baking in the sun! All in all this was a great vacation for the price and we will be back!!!!

Room Tip: Get a Junior Suite on the 9th and 10th floors for a bigger balcony and a great view!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

Just back from the Riu - a fabulous vacation. Can't wait to return. I have nothing negative to say it was all positive. We were in the "C" block which has seen many comments here - it was just fine - great view from the balcony, room was very clean and the beds were comfortable. I'd probably ask for a room in the other building next time, only because I'd like a balcony to sit on. The buffet was outstanding for all meals. Staff were pleasant. Beach was amazing. Anyone going there - you'll have a great time.

Room Tip: If you are in the "C" building, asking for one of the "x47" rooms, they wrap aro...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Price Your Stay

Been to Hotel Riu Palace Aruba? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Aruba

Address: J.E. Irausquin Boulevard 79 | Palm Beach - Palm Beach, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba (Formerly Aruba Grand Beach Resort)
Location: Caribbean > Aruba > Palm - Eagle Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Casino Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#9 Luxury Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#12 Spa Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#14 Top resorts Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#16 Romantic Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#17 On the Beach Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#18 Family Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Aruba 4*
Number of rooms: 450
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
> * Opened: summer 2007> * Situated in Palm Beach on the island of Aruba> * Two 10-story buildings, one 8-story building> * Located on the beach> * Complimentary sun loungers and parasols on the beach> * 4 km / 2.48 Miles from Oranjestad> * 700 m / 2296.7 Ft. From various shops> * 10 km / 6.21 Miles from the airport> * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Diners ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Amex, Travelocity, Booking.com, Expedia, BookIt.com, Hotels.com, Despegar.com, Priceline, Odigeo and Tingo so you can book your Hotel Riu Palace Aruba reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Riu Palace Aruba Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
Riu Aruba
Riu Palace Aruba Resort
Hotel Riu Palace Aruba Palm - Eagle Beach

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Hotel Riu Palace Aruba, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.