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“Served its purpose.. kind of” 1 of 5 stars
Review of ClubHotel Riu Bambu

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ClubHotel Riu Bambu
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
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Turn Spring Around!
Ranked #67 of 101 hotels in Punta Cana
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Served its purpose.. kind of”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2013

Came with 8 other young men to enjoy our spring break. \

The food: poor at best. DO NOT EAT THE COLD HAMBURGERS OR HOT DOGS at the sports bar. I took a bite and threw up. No es bueno. Reservations you have to be in line at 7 to get anything good. We made it to the steak house last night and it was average. We did leave and venture to Kekua and had one of the freshest seafood meals we have ever tasted right down the beach. Kind of pricey but very worth it.

We were also in the 5000 block and the rooms were very nice and clean. Mini bar was only restocked once the entire trip despite me calling the front desk literally 7 times.

The bartenders here are awesome. Rossie and Acosto and Walesca and George loved us and took shots with us every time we took one. Very friendly(although we tipped them a lot over the week). An older gentleman paid for one of the cocounut drinks for me and a friend and they are terrible. But Walesca filled the coconut up with mama juana so we drank out of that. (thanks againand good luck with the baby Lorie if you see this!)

Some of the guests did not really appreciate us although we had many people tell us we were well behaved for being so intoxicated. If you take your family to the 50$ a night all inclusive during spring break and dont expect college kids then you are just not intelligent. There was no need to take pictures of us we are not zoo animals. For the future: If you want us to turn our music down, just politely knock. Theres no need to request we be removed from the hotel. If you want no college kids pay the 20$ extra a night and stay at one of the three palaces if you can afford it. If you cant than save up one more month and go to the palace when we are not here.

The lady who said we treated the workers like slaves is just flat out wrong. They would not have taken pictures with us or hugged us when we left if they were treated poorly.

But ya not a very good hotel if you can afford literally anywhere else.

Room Tip: Stay at the palace
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Poundtown, New Maryland
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2013

If you want to go to Hell/Purgatory, just stop at the RIu Bambu. The college kids were the only good part of this trip. The food is dog meat. If I wasn't so drunk constantly then I think I would have shot myself. Dont come here. Because you'll most likely die.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Saint John, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

Interesting to see comments from guests that were there the same time we were to compare notes. We stayed there Feb 25-Mar 4 Hello to you Sylvie! We too stayed at the 5000 block, beautiful room but what's up with not getting face cloths, we had to keep asking every day! And the noise from the maids every morning...not everyone is up and gone at 7am! Only 1 room key, $10 for a second one. No washroom or place to get a drink near the beach. Also there is no benches any where to sit. The grounds are quite big so not sure why that is. Biggest complaint was the cigarette smoke! There was no getting away from it, especially trying to sit and enjoy the evening performers, we moved several times and would usually give up and leave.
Food: pretty much the same every day, buffet beverages were not good. Alot of time there was no diet pepsi in the dispenser and the juices were sugary
Service: staff were great, friendly
Entertainment: very talented bunch of kids but is it necessary for the girls to wear thongs for every performance! And the girls were really showing them off, honestly the elderly and kids did not need to see them waving their butts at them! Distasteful.
Cleanliness: grounds were very clean, always staff around cleaning up
By saturday the college kids started arriving(march break) very loud and obnoxious. Our building was very noisey at night from them. Well this is just our experience, my husband and I won't be back but hopefully our imput will benefit others who base their chose on these reviews. :)
Oh and we both got travellers diarhea from this trip, a first!

Room Tip: unless you like to walk, request a room close to ammenities!
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

Travelled with my husband and two 10 year olds between February 24 and March 3rd. I was a bit concerned about going as I had read some of the negative comments on here, but was pleased with the resort. Here are my honest impressions:

Resort: Check in was quick and organized. People complained about the keys (they only give you one) give me a break! The entire resort was kept impeccably clean even though some of my fellow guests were doing their best to mess it up including leaving their empty cups everywhere including the beach and around the pool area.

Food: The selection was overwhelming huge. I counted 5 or 6 different food stations that carried a wide variety of foods from fish to roast turkey, fries, hamburgers, roasted potatoes...you name it they had it. They also had a high dessert selection, cheeses and fruit. The wait staff clear the dirty plates off our table really quickly and brought us all our drinks promptly. The open air portion of the dining room was fantastic with an incredible view of the beach. We visited one speciality restaurant, the steak house (Mamajana) and it was really good. The steaks are not your typical North American looking steaks, but still really good. We also tried the Mexican one but we didn’t like it. We stuck with the buffet for the rest of the time as we enjoyed it.

Staff: I was told the in order to get good service we would need to tip well. This was not the case, we tipped some of the time, most times not, but still got great service regardless. The staff worked their butts off to clean, entertain and cook for the guests...my hats off to them!

Entertainment: We only saw the circus show, it was on a bit late for the kids but it was well worth staying up. The show was great and the kids loved it. Other than that the entertainment staff was on site morning-noon and night organizing games and activities for anyone that wanted to participate. The 3pm "Rui Bambu" song is still in my head!

The Room: We stayed in the 2000's block, this is the older non-renovated section. The room was really clean (trust me I checked and am very germaphobic!!) and we always had clean towels and the mini fridge was re-stocked daily. The pillows were a bit flat and uncomfortable to sleep on, although I’m sure they would have brought us more if we had asked

The Beach; The beach was perfect, the sand was like baby powder and the ocean was stunning. We could always find beach chairs and shade when needed. There are a ton of people that will stop and try to sell you trips, jewelry etc. that can get a bit annoying especially if they keep asking you (

Some of the American guests; They tended to take over the pool area, harassed the DJ to play dumb country songs (especially the one about the Solo cup!) got really obnoxiously drunk and chanted U.S.A...U.S.A!! I understand that this is their idea of fun, but I didn’t care for the lack of respect they showed to other guests that did not appreciate the noise or their particular taste in music. I also hated the way they left their empty cups everywhere and treated the staff like they were their slaves, I never heard any of them utter a "please" or "thank you" the entire time I was at the bar(s)

As for the person who commented below me about children at the sports bar, I could agree less. Our kids loves the sports bar as it gave them an opportunity to get out of sun and there was plently there for them to do including the video games, air hockey and pool tables.

In short I would recommend this resort as much of what was wrong with it was not in their control. Although I would stay again my husband and I agreed that the next trip would be to Cuba to ensure that our trip would be "drunk abnoxious American" free

Room Tip: All rooms are a short walk from anything. Keep away from the 1000's if you want a quiter sectio...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 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.
Richibucto, New Brunswick, Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2013

Food - Not a big selection but their is something for everyone. I really did enjoy the omelette station for breakfast, they were delicious!! Service at the buffet restaurant, well let's put it this way, if you waited a little, the waiters would come up to you and asked you if you wanted something to drink. No you don't get waited on like other places but these waiters were there from morning service to dinner service and no big break in between because you would find them in the bars to help out!

Beach - Excellent!! 5 stars just for the beach!!

Pool - way too crowded and LOUD!! Except the newer pool next to the kids play area, only thing was if you wanted to get away from loud obnoxious persons at the pool bar and wanted to go to the pool you had to hear kids screaming instead...

Room - We had the new Deluxe Rooms, no complains about that!! The only thing that really bugged us is that we wanted more beer in our fridge, we asked but don't expect to get much, you get only 2 cans of beer for 3 days!!!

Bars - Never had a problem, drinks were great!!

I have 2 major complaints 1. How can they have a big resort like that have no washrooms?? Once at the lobby you have one set of 5 washrooms each then some at the Mamajuana Restaurant. If you have at least 1000 people at once that is not enough washrooms! Especially when someone is sick! 2. Parents, why do you bring your young children in a sports bar??!! It's a bar, people are smoking and drinking, it's not a place for a 1-2 year old neither for a 6-7 year old, I know that if my kids were there with me, they would never had a chance to be in there, there is nothing there for them anyways!!!

Room Tip: We had the new Deluxe Rooms bloc 5000, very nice and very modern!!
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 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.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

but the rest is average. We did have a wonderful time on the beach. Room was average size but the bathroom was small. We couldn't open the door without hitting the toilet. The food choices in the cafeteria never really changed and there is no where else to eat breakfast or lunch. And the food quality was average at best. At least it kept us from overeating while on vacation. Drinks were good and plentiful. We had stayed at the Riu Palace next door a couple years ago and liked it much better.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
188 helpful votes 188 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We booked an Apple Vacations 5 Apple Square Deal and the Riu Bambu is the resort chosen for us. We were at the Riu Bambu Feb 18-25. The beach at this resort is one of the best in this area. As we walked the beach in either direction some resorts had their chairs so close together you could not put a glass down. The Riu’s beach was very spacious with palm trees providing natural shade as needed. There were always chairs available. Not so at the pool. That was the famous “chair save game”. The pool area was very crowded and noisy and very little breeze. There was no bar on the beach, and the restrooms were quite a hike from the beach. The only bathrooms were next to MamaJuana restaurant, so these were used by the pool, beach and restaurant guests.
We had room 505 which was a ground floor room with a patio. Excellent location. Close to the beach, and close to lobby, theatre, restaurants and bar. Room had a bed, a small round table, two chairs, and a dresser and nightstands. The closet contained the digital safe (no charge) and a generous amount of hangers. Always hot water no matter what time it was. One day the toilet was not running properly and upon reporting it, they responded immediately and corrected the problem. Bath gel and shampoo packets provided. No washcloths even with a note left requesting this. Mini bar included with room. No coffee pot. That would have been a nice touch. The bed was very firm. Only a sheet and the dirty looking drab spread. No blanket. With the AC as cold as it was, a blanket would have been welcome. If you wanted an extra key for your room, just go to front desk and pay a $10 deposit which is refunded upon returning the key. Maids usually cleaned the room in the morning.
Food: Buffets always provided a generous array of foods. Always hot and always refilled. Great service The one thing I noticed is that there were two egg stations in the AM but only one would make omelets and the other egg station did not make eggs per your request. He just kept frying eggs and putting them in the warming pans, some over easy, some sunny side up, some scrambled. The alacart restaurants required you to reserve at 7am that day. Crazy to have to set an alarm just to make a reservation. We did one day for the steak house and it was ok, but would not bother to do so again. No snack bar at pool as so many resorts have. MamaJuana was open air, but under a roof and people were in swim attire in there which was acceptable.
WIFI free in lobby-90 min per day. User name and password is on the wall behind the front desk.
Entertainment staff was always busy with games on the beach and at the pool. Never pushy. We only saw a few of the shows at night, pretty much the same as you see at other resorts. Marino at the Plaza bar was the best. Lots of children at the resort. Massages were $60 for 55 minutes. There was a flea market about a mile down the beach. Easy walking.
One thing we were not informed of was that you had to pay $10 per person to enter the country.
One of the most negative things at this resort was the way they handled the beach towels. As the day went on, you could not get a clean beach towel. We like to exchange our towels for clean ones and take the towels to the room with us. They would not give you a clean one. And as the week went on, they wouldn’t even let you take the dirty one to the room. They actually posted Towel Guards on the walkways to catch you. In our case all I wanted the clean towel for was to use as a blanket because the AC was so cold. We found that by going along the walkway over by the kiddie area, there were no towel guards over there. It is a shame they treat guests like this at a 5 star resort.
The resort was clean and the service was good. There was constant grooming of the landscape and cleaning and painting of buildings. We heard there were some rooms that had been refurbished and were really nice. The water was not drinkable. Bottle water was provided in your mini bar. If you are looking for a resort with a small footprint, with a beautiful beach then this is the resort for you. Note the beach waters are a bit rough, not the calm waters you can float in as in some areas of the Dominican.

Room Tip: Bottom floors unless you want to climb stairs.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Bambu

Also Known As:
Riu Bambu
Riu Bambu Punta Cana
Riu Bambu Dominican Republic
Address: Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#56 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#56 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#57 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#57 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#67 Business Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Bambu 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located in Punta Cana * Situated on Arena Gorda Beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Palace Macao, Riu Taino and Riu Naiboa hotels * Main building and 1-story bungalow complex * Surrounded by 46,000 m2 / 50,300 sq. yards of palm groves, adjacent to the beach * 50 km / 31 miles from Higley * 600 m / 1,980 ft. from Caribbean Street * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Int€™l. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Diners ... more   less 
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