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“Disappointment” 3 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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Ranked #72 of 99 Hotels in Punta Cana
Grand Rapids
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Disappointment”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

We were given this resort from a "Square Deal" It is suppose to be a *5*, but I would disagree. The Pros are: The beach - very soft sand, although when we were there it was not raked, so it was very weedy. The Specialty Restaurants - had great food, but the service was lacking. No one wanted to give you direction or a smile...too bad. Angel, at the front desk, was super friendly and helpful. A real sweetheart. Cesar, our Apple Rep. was a super guy too. Helpful, friendly and accommodating. High praise for both these two gentleman.
The Cons: This is a older resort that needs some TLC. Our first room was dated and smelled so bad of smoke and dampness, that we asked to move. (We had requested non-smoking). Angel gave us different rooms which smelled better, but for non-smoking, why are there ash trays in the room? Makes no sense! Our friends room was on the walkway side and next to the "showroom" so it was very noisy for them. Our Apple Rep., Cesar, gave us an upgrade to the Deluxe Rooms when we mentioned to him about the lack of sleep, we didn't even ask him. Very sweet! These rooms are remodeled, but still need TLC.
The food was always the same in the buffets, and the juice seemed more like Tang or Kool-Aid. Drinks are very watered down and not a lot of variety. Beer and Wine were the only things that seemed not watered down.
Pools are smaller, but clean.
BTW - they have no shampoo/cream rinse or lotion in the rooms and you shouldn't drink or brush your teeth with the water in the rooms.

Room Tip: Deluxe rooms were better.
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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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3,663 reviews from our community

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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
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (625)
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English first
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

I have just returned from 10 days at the Bambu and I was abit wary due to some bad reviews but dont worry about them because I had a fantastic time. Booked with Thomson and we checked in day before at Manchester so no queueing the morning after and went straight through to departure lounge. Flew on the Dreamliner fantastic aircraft legroom in economy was excellent and food was good and great selection of films to pass the time. Arrived at Bambu and given a cocktail as a welcome got envelope with key and towel cards and stickers to put on case then staff take case to ur room whilst you can Chill in the sun.
The beer on tap was lousy and tried all 4 bars but it all tasted lousy. Found Santo Libre which is dark rum and 7up very nice and drank that instead and if you prefer branded spirits just ask and tip the barman or waiter and they will make sure u get served quicker.
Food was good abit repetitive but never had a bad meal tried the steakhouse steak was cooked to perfection and Mexican restaurant was good aswell.
Didnt stay round pool as the beach was gorgeous was gunna try swim up bar but it was always full so didnt bother. You get sellers coming upto you on beach but if you say no they go away. The shop in the hotel very expensive.
Room was good clean and air con very good mini bar stocked every 2 days.
Thomson reps Sunny and Julie were fantastic very helpful and friendly and we booked 2 trips with them. The Outback Jungle trip was good as you see how the locals live and end up in mountain for a bbq and end day at Macao beach and the beer is free flowing all day. We also did the Sanoa Island trip which was fantastic and highly recommened. You go out on speedboats to a starfish colony where you can hold and av pics taken and then to Sanoa where u get 3 hrs to chill and av a meal and the drink is free flowing all day. You come back on a catamaran where u just lay back and chill or get up and av a dance with the crew.
Overall a really enjoyable holiday and I will return to the Bambu but will try other resorts aswell but IGNORE the bad comments and go and enjoy yourself

Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

We have just returned from a two week stay at the Riu Bambu. We stayed in one of the upgraded rooms. The room was spacious and comfortable. The room was spotless on arrival and was cleaned daily throughout our stay to a very high standard. We had free wifi in our room which was really useful. Our room had air conditioning and a ceiling fan which kept the room cool when needed.
The best thing about this resort is the beach. It really is beautiful with clear blue sea. The beach was busy but never felt overcrowded. There are no umbrellas for the sun lougers but lots of palm trees to provide shade. It really was so peaceful and relaxing on this beach.
I didn't use the pool area as I'm more of a beach person. However, it did appear very noisy around the main pool at times so if you're looking for peace and quiet the beach is the place for you.
The grounds were beautifully kept with staff working around the clock to keep the gardens looking wonderful.
The buffet restaurants were good with lots of choices. It did become repetitive at times but I've never been to an all inclusive hotel where this is not the case. We used three of the a la carte restuarants and found them all to be of good quality and with good service. We had no issue booking these restaurants and ate in them most evenings.
The staff were always helpful and were very friendly. They really did go out of their way to help.
I would recommend this hotel to anyone looking for a relaxing beach holiday. I would also suggest the room upgrade as the upgraded rooms were lovely but seemed much brighter and modern than the standard rooms.

Room Tip: Upgraded rooms seem much nicer.
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  • Stayed June 2014, 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
    • 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.
Liverpool, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

We went to the Dominican Republic in May it's a the perfect time of year to go. When we there we celebrated my Mum's birthday we paid the travel rep 25 dollars and they took it from there're the staff at hotel where lovely they decorated the room with balloons on top of the bed, flower heart on the bed and bottle of rum and at dinner they decorated the table with flower petals a bottle of champaign oh and they came out singing and dancing while caring a chocolate cake. It was that good we coming back to the Riu Bambu Hotel there is something for everyone Sports,Spa, Shops, Beach, Nightlife,Bars,food, we went on few trips we did a Caribbean cruise we where picked up from are hotel at around 7am we picked up people from other hotels and then we headed for the other side of the island we jetted across the Caribbean waters in a speed boat , then we stopped in the middle of the water and if you want you could go swimming or snorkelling with the tropical fish after a while in the water it was back on the speedboat to shallower waters and everyone got out off to see the starfish you hold them but you cold hold them in water but not take them out of the water completely, back on the boat and we arrived at are owen private island it was the place they filmed Pirates of the Caribbean, we had a feast there was lobster, prawns, chicken, veg, rice, bread, pasta and deserts , alcohol and non alcohol drinks we had the for 3 hours you could sun bath, swim, relax in ha mix then when it was time to go back we went back on a yacht there where plenty of drinks on both boats , it is perfect for everyone We dropped off are hotel at about 6pm that night a day to you will never forget.

Me and and my Mum went to Dolphin Discover it is fantastic day out you can go in the morning or afternoon , when you arrive you are given your wrist bands to enter they have a number so you now what group you will be in , once you have entered you will be shown a safety video then they take you on a tour they show the tropical birds you also get to see a seal show and then we made our way over to the locks to get changed into your swim wear and get a life jacket before you could swim with dolphins you had to remove all jewellery and watch a clip of how to interact with them. It was amazing be in the water the dolphin we swam with was called Malak and the trainer was called Veronica you got to swim on his stomach and be jetted across the water holing on to his tale and the best part is you are in the middle of the water the instructor signals the dolphin you make a big y shape for the dolphin to jump over your head.

You get picked up from your hotel and dropped back off afterwards

Stayed May 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Saint Louis, Missouri
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2014

Just got back yesterday. No beach views from any room. Only good food was breakfast. Room was clean but not very pretty. Water was okay but much prettier at the Iberostar Grande about a mile down. Won't go there again. People that work there were for the most part rude. Oh and don't ask for a wake up call and expect it on time.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Barnsley, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2014

We have been to over 20 countries and stayed in over 35 hotels around the world and have been going to the Dominican since 2001 - We love this place and have recommended it to family and friends - but not anymore -
We first went to this Hotel 2 x years ago with Thomson/First Choice and expected it being the same as still sold this year as 4T Premium - wrong - and I have heard that they are taking the status from this hotel because of poor hygiene and cleanliness issues - if you have already booked I suggest you contact your rep prior to going and ask them to explain why - unlike not being informed myself - at least after which you can decide whether you still want to go or not.

I spent most of the second week of my holiday ill in my hotel room which ended in me getting worse and so I was admitted to hospital and spent 2 x days on a drip and with medication - I was discharged on Friday as I flew home the next day along with medication to continue taking and I am still not well after a week being at home.

Food was cold and undercooked - water was given out at mealtimes from a jug - of which I am sure we were given tap water as it did not smell good. We were given dirty beach towels - wasps in our wine at evening meal. We saw waiters putting all the dregs from coffee pots left after people had left breakfast tables - gathered them all up and poured them back into the boiler from which they continued to pour out of for the next unsuspecting guests

After eating cold, undercooked, inedible food from the buffet - we decided to try the speciality ones/

I became ill after eating and drinking water possibly at the Asian restaurant and got worse after we had eaten at the Steakhouse 2 x days later.

I have entered this on trip advisor - as advise to people - yes the beach is the best ever - but there are lots of other hotels on the same stretch of beach to choose from.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 3106 which was down near the road - a good 10 min walk to reception etc - was dire...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 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.
Attert
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2014

I am just back from a week in Riu Bambu and it looks great.
Food is pretty good (differents things and many different restaurants), lots of activities possible and excursions proposed (Scuba Diving).
A nice sport bar and all kind of drinks served by very nice waiters and waitress.
Try to ask for a room not too close to the main buldling to stay away from noice.
Had a very great time and will get back in the future !

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 5
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

Address: Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#38 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#59 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#60 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Bambu 3.5*
Number of rooms: 740
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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Also Known As:
Riu Bambu Punta Cana
Riu Bambu Dominican Republic

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