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“Lovely holiday-solid 4*” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Macao

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Hotel Riu Palace Macao
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #31 of 98 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Lovely holiday-solid 4*”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2013

I travelled with my boyfriend Martyn on the 1st November for 2 weeks and we booked through Thomson.

We chose this hotel as it had recently been refurbished and was also an adults only so was very appealing.

We flew in on the Dreamliner which was the first one to land there and we had a celebrity audience. Flight was great and the aircraft had more room, better air quality and very smooth through turbulence.

On arrival to airport this was an absolute nightmare-very disorganised and we queued for over an hour to get through immigration. On the way home it was horrendous-taking 2 hours to get through. We had to rush for our flight and there was no time to look around the duty free. For this reason I wouldn't return to dom rep as was such a shambles.

Moving on to the hotel. On arrival we were greeted with welcome drinks and as a group we were instructed of everything from suitcases-internet usage. Very thorough! Rooms were already allocated and this was great.

Rooms were clean, bright and spacious-double bed and a lovely bathroom with a very good shower. Hairdryer was rubbish but I've never found a good one abroad anywhere! Mini bar was all stocked with everything from water to Pepsi,presidente beer and also you had the liquor dispensers. We liked a drink in the room and we did find we had to call regularly to be refilled which was a bit of a pain. Rooms were always cleaned each day and they always offered extra clean towels so overall lovely.

In terms of the food there is a wide variety of choice. El patio does breakfast-good choice but we did miss a proper sausage and a hash brown-would have been lovely. Lunch- you had the restaurant by the pool which was fine-but there was no table service so became a bit of a rat race and food again could be cold.We did however find the Krystal restaurant which is practically next door that was lovely-very quiet as no one seemed to know you didn't have to book. Table service, hot food-excellent! Evening you had the buffet and you also had the al acarte-we only went to the steak restaurant and that was lovely. Buffet we found was wide choice but we did find food repetitive and also could be cold by the time time you got to the table.

In terms of drinks we found the quality of the alcohol was poor. I believe that drinks were watered down at the bars and premium liqueurs were not always given to you unless you asked. Even when you did ask they would sometimes try to fob you off. Service in the lobby bar we found to be quite slow-quicker to get yourself. Around the pool was excellent if you were relaxing on your subbed. However we found when going to the swim up bar that you were sometime ignored for sometime waving a tip. I don't tip to GET service- I always tip when I've HAD good service. Again in the restaurants it was still quite slow.

Entertainment of evening was poor. Saw a few evenings and was very amateur. Mainly dancers. Illusion show was rubbish and Michael Jackson awful. However I would like to add that the animation team were brilliant. They all work so hard and were always trying to involve you in all the activities as well as a dance at night. Malvin, jinette, Alex, Jefferi, wilkins were brilliant. I loved their little dance that they do at 10am & 3pm and Malvin's dancing was always entertaining. They made our holiday!!

We did do a couple of trips booked through Thomson. Saona island was a lovely day out-plenty of drink, ok food although would recommend mosquito repellant! Outback safari was shocking- waste of money unless you like sweating on an open bus in the heat, being thrown about as you travel over unmade roads. Food ok but really was a excuse to take you in the outback and sell crap like cigars, statues, lotions & potions etc. beach stop was only for 30mins and the only animals we saw were a couple of iguanas, caged crocodile and a bunch of kids.

Location wise riu was a big complex- could do with a sports bar and a beach bar and you can't really go outside the complex unless on a trip.

I would say the hotel is a solid 4* but has a way to go to become a 5*. What made it brilliant was the people we met there. Judith, Ian, Richard, keeli, Karen, Richard, Theresa, graham etc. otherwise brilliant weather, company and a tan to go with it.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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2,530 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 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 (518)
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English first
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2013

We stayed at the Riu Palace Macao from the 16th October to the 30th. If anything it was even better than before. On arrival you are told as a group about facilities and meal times, this saves time all round. Rooms great as usual. Main restaurant very good with plenty of choice. This year
We just went to the Steak House again really good. The animation team were great will give them all a mention and if I miss anyone I apologise Aneurys Spaguettys, Brenda, Alex, Joaquim, Jinette,Malven, Manuel, Jefferi, Wilkins and Naomi. Hope to see you all again. We met friends there that we had seen for the last 3 visits. Rachel & Bob, Chris & Peter that we met last year, and others. We also made some new friends like Renate and Herman from Canada. We joined in the games and you meet a lot more people doing that. The last day we were there we had a big thunder and lightening storm it even brought tree down at the front of the hotel. Even with that going on animation team still keeping everyone occupied with different games. The concert room has been refurbished, out with the old carpet now its tiled, and much better.Can,t praise the hotel enough, great holiday great food and great company, and all the staff really friendly and looking forward to next year to go back.

Room Tip: All rooms good.
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  • Stayed October 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tuttle, Oklahoma
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2013

We traveled to the Dominican Republic and stayed at the Hotel Riu Palace Macao. It was a wonderful vacation. The facility was newly remodeled and a fantastic job they did. The staff was very helpful, friendly and just all around great. The beach is beautiful and there are lots of palm trees if you want to have shade while in the sand. This was our best vacation ever.

Room Tip: I can't imagine a bad room, but of course the beach view is fantastic.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
Charlestown, New Hampshire
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2013

We planned our trip through CheapCarribean.com - 7 of us traveling together - reserved 4 rooms - celebrating our friend's 50th birthday. All our paperwork from travel agent showed notes that we were all traveling together and wanted rooms together. When we arrived at Macao, the front desk clerk advised us that they had 2 rooms booked for us at Macao and 2 rooms booked at the sister resort next door (Punta Cana)! When we questioned and said that wasn't correct, he was rude and not helpful and said "no room here for you all". We had to push him to get him to fix it and they ended up moving us all next door to the Riu Punta Cana (not great location--separate review being done on their site but at least their front desk staff was not as rude and unhelpful as this one at Macao). At first we thought it was a mistake made by travel agent, but over the next couple of days, we heard several similar stories from people staying at the Riu Punta Cana about being "bumped" from Macao and moved to Punta Cana and they had used several different travel agents -- one even booked directly with Macao and got bumped. Very frustrating and disappointing but worst of all, the way they handled the situation was inexcusable.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 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.
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2013 via mobile

Had a week with my wife keeli,a very nice relaxing week.
Food is all very good in all its restaurants,and the staff can't do enough to help you.
Rooms very good /entire hotel is spotless and cleaned constantly .
Pool side entertainment is good fun entertainment staff are great !
Shame I didn't have an extra week myself and new friends martyn chris and ian were the best boule partners
Good do with more evening shows .
All in all a very good holiday .
Would recommend highly .

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wausau, Wisconsin
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2013

We have been to about 32 All Inclusive resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico, we recently stayed at the Macao Nov 3rd thru the 10th and here is our review.

Check In
Very good no problems received our requests and also what we paid for.

We reserved a Jacuzzi Suite and it was absolutely beautiful, very roomy and we agreed it was the best room we ever stayed in while on vacation.

Pools and Beach
The property offered two pools, one was referred to as the quiet pool and the other was a swim up bar/pool Now this is where we felt it was too quiet, After talking to a few others they felt the same, so in spite of that we visited the Riu Bambu (next door to the left) and had a great time while over there as most people were very friendly.
The beach was so beautiful, we walked the beach everyday in each direction and we both agree that the Macao had the most impressive of all.

We ate at Three of the a la carte restaurant's, The Asian, Steakhouse and the Fusion with the Steakhouse being our favorite.
The buffet for breakfast and lunch we very good with a great selection every day as well as for dinner on the few nights we ate there.

The swim up bar did not have good service, however the lobby bar did, ( a side note, now we were there for 8 days and the waiter on the beach took forever to get our order right, 2 rum and coke and 2 rum and coke light with extra ice, real simple but no he just could not get it!)

It was ok, just what you would expect from an all inclusive.

We truly like the resort and its location, however we like to have a bit more of a party atmosphere while on vacation. The travel company we booked with was never to be found we made several attempts to locate him (Boris was the name on our paper), so all in all we had to make our own arrangements for our departure.

Safe Travels

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013 via mobile

I've just got round to writing this review I wrote one on facebook but I just felt I had to give more feedback as this was an amazing holiday ever and can't wait to return in a few months!! It was spotlessly clean food was amazing drinks where great housekeeping was spot on entertainment was 5 star honestly couldn't fault it i stayed for my 21st birthday they left birthday greetings dominican rum rose petals and beautiful heart shapes in the towels which was a really sweet touch as I had just popped back to get changed for my birthday meal which was super in one of their amazing al a carte restaurants, the food was gorgeous and they made me a lovely cake presented with candles balloons dimmed lights and a birthday song of course!! Was lovely and I thank all the staff at Riu palace macao my room was attended by housekeeping staff around 3 times a day to turn down my bed leave extra fresh towel or to re stock the fridge and optics was a brilliant service sheets and rooms was spotlessly cleaned everyday! The casino is great the best staff member is called OLIVER he's cool as a cucumber on ice and will help you to enjoy your stay at the hotel he has amazing laungage skills and will make you laugh also Danniella is really helpful too !! All amazing really YOU MUST stay here once in your life ... Me il be coming back again soon thank you all again ... X

  • Stayed May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Macao

Address: Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
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
Hotel Style:
#13 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#17 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#19 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#24 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#25 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#30 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Macao 4*
Number of rooms: 364
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Taino, Riu Naiboa hotels and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu. 3-storey building. Colonial style architecture. Surrounded by 30,000 m2 / 36,000 sq. yards of palm groves alongside the beach. 50 km / 31 miles from Higey. 200 m / 660 ft. from Caribbean Street. 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Int'l. Airport. Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Macao Hotel Punta Cana
Riu Palace Macao Punta Cana
Riu Palace Punta Cana
Rui Palace Punta Cana

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