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“Nothing to complain about!” 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 #11 of 42 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Niagara Falls, Canada
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Nothing to complain about!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Recently Feb. 5-12,2013, my husband and I stayed at the Riu Merengue Garden Resort. The transition to our bus and then to the resort was seamless. We had a short wait and then a 35 min. ride through a very scenic route to our resort. We received a lovely cool drink on arrival and even though we arrived before 3 p.m. everything required to register was waiting in pre-prepared envelopes and handed to us when we got off the bus. We were escorted to our room and within minutes were unpacked and sitting by the beautiful pool, sipping on a cool refreshment. We ate great food, we participated in beach and pool activities daily, and enjoyed the fabulous staff and weather all week long. Our room was cleaned fabulously and we got everything we asked for. Anyone who complains about this place needs to stay home, as we had a great vacation!!!!

Room Tip: We were assigned our room which was a good walk from the main lobby, but very quiet for sleeping at...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,872 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (475)
Date | Rating
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  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
ottawa
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

We stayed at the Riu Merengue (Garden section -- specifically asked for this) vs the village so we could be close to Bachata where friends were staying. Overall we had a good stay, I'm not sure I'd go back given the isolation of the place but if the price was right definitely would.

The Good

1) Grounds, rooms, common areas were very clean and staff worked very hired to keep it that way
2) Entertainment staff worked tirelessly - if you like to be doing on resort activities there was not a shortage of things to do -- A for effort. Shows at night are dated like most places but they give 150% in their effort
3) Friendly staff
4) ability to move between the three resorts for everything with the exception of dinner
5) scenery beautiful
6) rooms satisfactory, water pressure good
7) Food -- i was very impressed, this is not 5 star luxury but food was good, pleantiful and surely you can find something (main buffet at Bachata was the best buffet spot for all meals)
8) Ate also at both restaurants multiple times at Merengue - enjoyed ourselves - just get up early to book.
9) isolation meant no hounding by vendors or timeshare people

The Mediocre
1) Beach -- this 3 resort complex is very very isolated so there is not a long expanse of beach to walk for hours like you'll find in Punta Cana -- one end to the other 10 minutes or so . Rocky at Bachata end, nice and expansive at Village/Mambo end.
2) the chair game.... Beach has lots of loungers. Pools on the other hand are quite small and crowded -- up by 7:15 and place your towel meant a chair otherwise good luck.
3) pools are small - only one swim up at Bachata
4) showing a bit of age with the above comments but for just relax still had a great time.
5) Drinks..... mediocre at best... never found one that stood out... watery, little alcohol
6) gym needs a big of sprucing up but the basics for equipment were there


The Ugly and that is a strong word
1) hair dryers are are 1960 ish
2) no irons or boards in room
3) wine....need I say more but that is the norm I've found most places....
4) smoking............good lord..felt like everyone and their proverbial cat smoked .......

On the whole as I said we really enjoyed ourselves and for pure relaxation and some fun it was good.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baldwin, New York
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

Beautiful grounds. This resort was truly a nice place. The people were so friendly. The food was really good. The resort has 3 hotels, multiple pools, food and drinks all day long. The housekeeping people were wonderful. They cleaned the rooms, hallways, stairs & patios every day. Everyone we encountered was helpful and would do anything we asked. Great time. The beach was very nice, pools very clean. We were always able to find chairs at both the beach and the pool......We took a snorkle tour to Paradise Island....magnificent. We booked it right in our hotel. It was an hour and a half bus ride, but it was great. Lobster (extra) lunch included. All the people were wonderful. My husband and I were in the video of the trip....we had a blast! I would definitely recommend the Hotel Riu Mambo. Oh and the weather was PERFECT! High 80's everyday.

Room Tip: We stayed in the area right off the beach, across from one of the bars and restaurant. Perfect loca...
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  • Stayed February 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Central NJ
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

The title of the review pretty much says it all. The rooms are very dated. At least they're pretty clean, if not I would've given them a 2 rating. The beds are scary old and I felt uncomfortable sleeping in them - both for the downright lack of comfort and the fact that they're very old. I unfortunately caught a glimpse of the stained box spring when the sheets slid away. The sight has left permanament mental scars and I fear I will be kept awake at night by the memory - AARGHHH!!!. C'mon folks, buy some new mattresses/box springs!!!

Another big concern is that the resort allow smoking EVERYWHERE. There are no non-smoking rooms, no-smoking sections in the restaurants, they allow smoking on the beach, at the pool... EVERYWHERE! We went with another couple and they literally had to be moved twice in order to find a room that wasn't too smelly because of the smoke. The resort attracts a lot of Europeans, so I guess the Riu people don't want to limit their ability to contract lung cancer. But hey, at least the Euro chicks are prone to sunbathe topless. So if bare-chested 62 year-old German women, dudes in Speedos, and cigarette smoke that's so thick you can cut it with a knife are your cup of tea, then Riu Merengue is for you!!!

Food is pretty good. Service is OK. It would be great if not for the fact that the pool-/beach-side service is almost non-existant.

The beach is downright gorgeous. The sand is comfortable and the beach has the benefit of naturally-occurring palm trees that add a lot of shade. Seriously, if I could stay somewhere else and go the beach at Riu Merengue, I'd do it in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hazel Park, Michigan
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

Having been to Riu properties before I knew what to expect. They run a clean ship. Some one is cleaning all the time and the staff is verry helpfull. Also having been at the Merengue for a week I noticed some people that were not happy. They are most likley to not be happy any place. As to the rooms ours was clean and comfortable It was made up very nice each day and the cleaning staff was quite nice although very few spoke english. One thing they do understand is one or two dollars and a few smiles and you will get extra towles or anythig you would like in the mini bar. The food is ok, I won't say it's great but there is some thing you will like at every meal. The Italian and steak house are nice and the staff is there to make sure your meal is fine. The bars are fun. If you want to meet people from all over the world just pull a chair up and start a conversation. The nightly shows are fun and campy. I understand they are not for everyone but you will find yourself clapping and laughing. The grounds are very well kept. The grounds crew is up early and working hard to make sure the beach and every place else looks great. The resorts on each side of the Merengue are also nice and close by. For a change of pace you can go next door to the Bacchatta and have breakfast or lunch or visit the all night bar. While we were there it was a younger group, they were lots of fun but it was nice to be sleeping next door. The beach is very nice. Sun, sand and shade. The water was warm and clear. The only thing I would recomend is sun serean from the moment you arive till the moment you go. Also water shoes if you like to swim in the ocean as there is a large rock reef about 100 yards off shore. If you go just kick back relax and enjoy. I know we will be back.

Room Tip: We were given a room in the center of the center and it was just right. 1071 was our room #. I think...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Oakville, Canada
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

I was a bit worried when reading the reviews, but was pleasantly surprised when I arrived. The RIU Merengue is fabulous! My family truly enjoyed our stay at the Merengue Village. It is safe, beautiful and the staff is fantastic. I'm not sure why everyone is complaining about the Village side. I'm from the islands myself and I find the Village side to be more authentic and it gives that true exotic Caribbean feel you pay for. The Village is less crowded, the cottages are right by the ocean, with a view of the mountains.Also, the village has the BEST pools and a beach bar. Rooms are clean. Bathrooms are updated. NO COMPLAINTS....GREAT VACATION CHOICE. Don't listen to complainers ...that's all they do ......Riu Merengue is a 5 star.

Room Tip: Rooms close to the beach and pool are better suited for families...easy access for all.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Welland, Ontario, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

Hotel is awesome..pools clean..property spotless..and staff awesome. Food and rooms were great..beautiful beachand nightly entertainment was fun. Not hard to make friends with the locals, they are more than willing to do whatever it takes to make your stay pleasurable. We had a great vacation for 1 week stay..next year our group will return to the same resort but for 2 weeks

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
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
Amenities:
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
#6 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#10 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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