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“Good hotel” 4 of 5 stars
Review of ClubHotel Riu Merengue

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ClubHotel Riu Merengue
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Bahia de Maimon, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #14 of 45 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Warrington, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Good hotel”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2012

Read all the reviews before going and was worried to be honest

I am happy to say the reviews are wrong, clean hotel, great staff and food was good.

The hotel which was closed meant a pool which was quiet and we used it due to all the beds being spread out.

I think the best endorsement is that I would go again

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
10 Thank CraigBoardman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,344 reviews from our community

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South Manchester
Level Contributor
28 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2012 via mobile

We've just got home after a 2week stay here. I'm not exactly sure what to make of it. I will explain in detail shortly but it's true about the break in to rooms as we had the same, food is ok but the drinks are vile, bar staff great but restaurant and management were so rude..... PLEASE READ:
Upon arrival the check in was efficient and staff very friendly, as I got to my room 1043 it stank of damp and urine, I told reception and they said it would be sorted... This took 12 nights to sort after constantly asking. The pillows always stank of urine and they simply swapped them between beds.
The weather was cloudy and raining but the humidity was awful. The 2nd evening we went for dinner in smart vest/tank tops and as we entered the restaurant we were surrounded by staff as though we had robbed the place. We were told that men cannot wear vests but women can??? We asked why as the restaurant is inside and they have NO air conditioning and were told they would send the manager.... This is where it all went wrong! The manager arrived and physically pushed us out of the restaurant shouting in front of other guests saying "IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE RULES, PACK YOUR BAGS AND LEAVE AS YOU ARE NOT WELCOME HERE", a couple witnessed this who's details we now have. We were so embarrassed and humiliated. As a party of 10 we stood out! The next day we spoke to the Thomson rep (Antonio), I've never met such an ignorant, useless waste of space EVER. It turns out he's nothing to do with Thomson and works for HotelBeds so is powerless. We got no help whatsoever from him. We ended up ringing Thomson ourselves in the UK but still got nowhere.
The next evening in the restaurant, staff ignores us and refused to serve us so we ended up walking out due to humiliation! After ten speaking to the other Thonson rep (Belissa!) we actually got somewhere and we're allowed to eat dinner at the Riu Bachetta next door... THAT HOTEL IS AMAZING. We were only allowed to do this for 6 nights and had to suffer the Merengue for the rest of our stay.
Like someone else's comments below, at the weekend the locals are allowed in and there are some dodgy characters around. We also doin items had been taken from some of the rooms and also the safe. We spoke with Thomson who implied we were lying so spoke with reception to the arrogant management and staff... They brushed it off until we demanded the police and told them to fingerprint the room. They came to the room, looke around and said "THIS PROBLEM DOES NOT HAPPEN IN THE DOMINICAN, WE CAN'T HELP YOU" and walked off! Totally unbelievable awful service. For the rest of our stay, the reception staff, restaurant staff and Thomson all refused to speak with us making us feel awful on our holiday... As for the rest, I've broke it down briefly:
Clean and tidy when not smelling of damp r urine! The air con is ok and does its job. The rooms are very dated but kept clean with fresh towels daily.
Breakfast and lunch was always had at the Bachatta next door and was beautiful. The dinner at the Merengue was hit and miss but could always find something.
DON'T DO THE A LA CARTE as it's simply awful, 5 from our party got sick due to the food.
Again it's hit as miss, I know u dot have branded drinks when on holiday but the majority of these drinks were awful and not drinkable, as for the wine... DON'T BOTHER!
Bar staff and beach staff were excellent and always there to help you. The guys cleaning the pools are also really friendly... Just be wary of the restaurant staff an management!
Superb and probably one of the best I've known, albeit te shows are not great, they try their best and are super friendly.... Especially Jack Daniels! Brilliant guy!

All in all I would recommend staying at the Bachetta next door which is so much better and safer. You can have lunch and breakfast at either hotel and use the facilities there so just book the Bachata and walk to the Merengue to experience it... U will soon go back to the Bachatta! It's our 1st time to Dominican and certainly the last.... KEEP AWAY FROM THE RIU MERENGUE! Email me if u require any help!

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
6 Thank tofty75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012 via mobile

we came back for the third time and were not disappointed!
If you are going to the Merengue don t worry
about a thing! the accommodation is kept spotlessly clean,the food is excellent the beachfront is stunning and the staff are always smiling and helpful-enjoy!

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
13 Thank Yru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2012

Just returned from a great fortnight at the Riu Merengue.
On arrival our check in was very efficient. Welcome drink greatly appreciated
The rooms are fairly basic but spotlessly clean & comfortable.There where balloons put in the room to decorate it for my 11 year old son (which I thought was a nice touch. Although mini bar only topped up every other day we could phone reception for more drinks at any time. There was also a man on a bike everyevening who was happy to give you extra.
The food was varied & there was something there for everyone every time (Two of our party are quite fussy eaters). We booked the steak restaurant on the night of our friends birthday & they supplied balloons & cake free of charge. Look out for Lidia the waitress in the main restaurant although every one was very helpful & efficient we felt that she went that extra mile & provided us with terrific service.
The bar staff couldn't have possibly worked any harder than they did. Even when the bar was busy we didn't wait long for a drink. During the day they would come around the pool & even on the beach to take orders for drinks.
The maintenance team seemed to work constantly cleaning the grounds pool & buildings.
The entertainment team worked really hard & made the holiday fun. We especially loved Jack Daniels, Tequilla. although we could not fault any of the others. The evening Entertainment was ok. A few dancing show's. Michael Jackson one very good & Africa show great. Magic show good although I don't like the fact they used birds & animals in it,& the comedy show performed by the entertainment staff gave us a good giggle. There is a kids club that looked like they provided fun for the little ones. As a party of four adults & an 11 year old we did not find the pool to be too noisy.
I have read reviews saying that the Dominicans come & take over the hotel & the weekends. I do not agree with this at all. We did not find them any louder than other families & after all it is the Dominican Republic so why should't they go to a hotel nearby.
Our Thompson rep's provided a really good frecyling service. People left their suncream insect repellent etc, so if you run out ask the rep
Overall excellent holiday

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
12 Thank Dizzy123_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2012

My boyfriend and I stayed @ the Riu Merengue from Nov 21st-Nov 27th, 2012. I must say, most of the poor reviews are true:( Not sure how people rated this hotel a 5/5.
To start, our check-in was quick and everyone was very nice through-out our whole trip. Yes, the "animation" team were very friendly and made sure that everyone had a good time. The actual resort, however, was below average, I would rate this resort a 3 and not a 4.5. The staff were great however, everyone was happy to be working and made sure you were well taken care of. The resort was SUPER clean too!
The room that we were in (1207) had the WORST BEDS AND PILLOWS EVER! We had to get extra padding and pillows to make our sleep more comfortable. The water pressure in our room was very weak and did not hold a consistent temperature.
We only had ONE day of sun...the rest of the days were very cloudy or rainy. I would not recommend this resort or Puerto Plata for that matter if you want constant sun, because at this time a year, it's a hit or miss.
Also, if you are a young couple (I'm 28 and my boyfriend is 30), I would not recommend this resort as there were mostly older people or couples with their kids or families. We had a good time towards the end of our trip as we met some great people. But if you are looking to party, this resort is definitely not for you.
The food was okay..not fabulous like some people have mentioned in the reviews.
The beach was weak, the scenery was amazing.
The locals do come in on the weekend which we found not an issue. I don't understand how people can complain about the locals coming in, it's their country and they are allowed a time off and enjoy the resort as much as anyone else.
Some staff are tip driven, also venders come to the resort on Monday's and are very pushy.
The entertainment at night was very poor. Lots of people on our resort were bitten by some sort of bug. VERY ITCHY AND ANNOYING! I still have some bits that are not healing. If you do come to this resort, bring with you calamine lotion, bug spray and Benadryl itch relief cream.

Overall, I will NOT be returning to this resort and do not plan on returning to Puerto Plata.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
6 Thank rlevin84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dewsbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2012

Returned from the Riu Merengue on Monday after a two week stay and I have to say I was very impressed. Check in was very smooth and we received our all inclusive bands on the bus, keys were waiting for us and our bag were brought to our rooms within half an hour.

We arrived later than expected due to a delay in Manchester, so had a quick walk around to get our bearings, the place is huge three hotels on one site although one of the hotels was closed, we could still use the pool area which was much quieter than the Merengue pool and was only a short walk.

Food quality was excellent, was a little wary at the low score in the brochure, but there was plenty of variety, whenever you wanted to eat and everything we ate was very good. Tried the steak al a carte restaurant one night and this was also good, didn't try the Italian, as there wasn't anything that you couldn't get in the main restaurant.

Rooms could do with a little updating but kept clean and tidy.

All I would say is that we did get a lot of bites, so make sure you take some strong repellant!

Staff were all very friendly and always smiled and said hello.

Overall, we had an excellent trip and would recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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
7 Thank Dave-L12345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

Actually I'm here now as I write this review. Staying from November 23rd - November 30th.
Staying with 5 other friends in 3 rooms.
The checkin was smooth and had no issues with the staff or the service. People here are very friendly. The unfortunate thing is that two of our rooms got broken into Saturday night. Im sure that they were watching us as it happened when we went for dinner. One of the rooms was locked from the inside and the person went through the bedroom window to excape. So far nothing has been done and the staff seem to just brush it off... I guess they're waiting for us to just leave. We also asked tom be relocated to second floor rooms.

Weather has been fairly nice, food is good. The one club onsite has been empty most nights and closes at 3:00 am. Then you really can't find anywhere to sit a listen to music. We had a portable bluetooth speaker which worked very well (JAMBOX Jawbone).

Hope the next two days go smoothly.

Room Tip: get a room on the second floor and where the front door faces public areas.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
3 Thank LyleAin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Merengue

Address: Bahia de Maimon, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Puerto Plata
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates):
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Merengue 3.5*
Number of rooms: 1007
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on the beach in Maimon Bay * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Located in the Riu Resort, near ClubHotels Riu Bachata and Riu Mambo * Main building and 1-story bungalow complex * Surrounded by 15,000 m2 / 18,000 sq. yards of tropical gardens * 9 km / 5.5 miles from Puerto Plata * 150 m / 495 ft. from Caribbean Street * 25 km / 15.5 miles from Puerto Plata Intl. Airport * 300 m / 990 ft. from a bus stop * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Diners ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clubhotel Riu Merengue Hotel
Club Hotel Riu Merengue
Clubhotel Riu Merengue Puerto Plata
Riu Merengue Dominican Republic
Riu Merengue Puerto Plata
Rui Merengue

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