We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Wonderful beach” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Macao

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Save
You added Hotel Riu Palace Macao to your Saves list
Hotel Riu Palace Macao
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel website
  |  
Hotel packages
  |  
Hotel deals
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Offer
EARLY BIRD SUMMER DEALS
Ranked #25 of 99 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Pittsburgh,Pa
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Wonderful beach”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014 via mobile

If you check out beaches first as we do I don't think you will be disappointed. We just came back on January 24th after a one week stay. As I said the beach and water are wonderful. There were 6 of us traveling and never had a problem finding beach chairs together.
There are just 2 pools,one a swim up bar pool, nice size,and the other wasn't really big but there was always room to swim. There was a fun water exercise class everyday. Actually there was outdoor activities all day if you wanted.
The people in charge of activities were a lot of fun. They were also the dancers for the pre-shows and they danced with the tourists in the evening. They never stopped. They were there from morning till night. Great personalities.
We had a room with a king bed. Very clean and pretty. Nice shower. The negative is even though the air was on and had a big fan, it could not keep up with the humidity. Even our clothes in the closet and drawers seemed damp. There was a slight musty oder also. I have seen some others mentioned this in their reviews.
The place where the indoor shows took place really smelled musty. The entertainment was pretty good. As good as it gets on islands.
The food. Some very good, some not so much. They like to deep fry a lot. We liked the buffet. They went all out setting up a table for 6. We enjoyed Krystal restaurant the best. It was specified as fusion. Don't know what that means but the shrimp dish was excellent. Went back a second time. No problem with making reservations except for the steakhouse. Never made it to that one.
I can tell you this. If you enjoy a nice glass of wine, red or white, you won't here. We like dry reds. Horrible isn't a strong enough word. Even simple things like an iced tea......no good. The usual island drinks were fine. They push Mama Juanas which we did like...a lot.
All and all we loved it. The people are nice and accommodating and all 6 of us give it a thumbs up

  • Stayed January 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Write a Review

2,418 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    1,269
    709
    246
    111
    83
See reviews for
288
1,353
28
22
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 (496)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
uniontown pa.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014

Just returned from vacation Jan 11-18 from RIUPalace Macao.Overall my wife and I were happy with almost all aspects of this resort.#1 You cannot fault the service.We have been to Mexico and Jamaica and the service here is second to none.Would like to especially thank Octavio,what a great server RIUshould be proud of employees like this.Also thanks to Juan Pablo and Meija,both stood out.Our only complaints and thrse are minor.Food and drinnks are not to the standards of other resorts.Some meals were very good,other not so.Drinks were hit and miss.Why use mixers instead of fresh ingredients?Again minor stuff but something to consider.Water not very warm this time of year so keep that in mind.All in all not much to complain about, just some observations to consider.Also don't fly uUnited if you can avoid it,anyone who tried to depart on flight 1669 would tell you the same.Just don't go there

Room Tip: Room 3182 very quiet.
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bemidji, Minnesota
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

My husband and I stayed here for 4 nights in January. It was intended to be 5, but our so called vacation began with a cancelled flight causing us to miss one night. As the shuttle was coming to the hotel we noted there wasn't the typically beautiful manicured property that we have had on our other all inclusive resort vacations. When we arrived at the hotel reception we were not blown away by the initial appearance of the resort. We inquired at the desk if it would be possible to stay an extra night for the one we lost. We were told that "yes," we could have our room the extra night. We made phone calls and changed our departure day only to be informed 2 days later that we did not have our room an extra night!!!!!! We once again had to make calls and change plans. If the hotel would have been honest the first day they could have saved us many hours of travel plan changes, headaches, and stress. We were on our vacation to avoid these things.
Next was the hotel itself and its room. The hotel is in need of serious renovation. It is very outdated and, for lack of a better term, "rundown." The room was musty and moldy smelling. The bed was hard as a rock. Our balcony was facing one of the other Riu hotels. We specifically looked for adults only and were greeted by screaming children and babies crying while on our balcony. The liquor dispenser on the wall was shabby and cheap. The first day my husband tried to shower and there was no hot water. We later found it was due to the power outages we noted everyday!!!
The food was mediocre at best. We noted the fish and seafood were all fishy tasting, which was hugely disappointing. The service was good and servers were polite. The room service menu consisted of about 5 items and did not include any breakfast. To make plans for room service at breakfast you were to let the desk know by 8pm the night before. We did attempt this with no luck. Also, the times we did order room service we had to call multiple times before calling the front desk to tell them no one was answering. About 5 minutes later room service would then call and take our order. I really do not think they should advertise 24 hour room service as much as they do with such poor selection and service.
The night life was disappointing also. The swim up pool bar closed at 6pm, both the wet and dry side. The Casino was small and as soon as you walked in you were hustled to some table game where they gave you free chips only to try to have you spend more at the chance of winning. The terrace area next to the bar was nice. The band playing was boisterous and fun. The entertainment staff would pull people up to dance. The bar service was quick. Inside the bar there was a nightly show. The parts of the show that included the audience were entertaining and hilarious. The show itself was in need of an overhaul. Each song sounds the same. The costumes are reminiscent of old Las Vegas, without the flare. I felt it catered to the older population of the guests and was rather "ho-hum." The disco just off the property was much more happening, but you had to pay out of pocket for drinks and was dark and dirty. The other party goers seemed to be having a good time, as were we, but it was too loud to socialize with anyone else. The young men hanging around were a bit of a put off, as is seemed they were hitting on all the female tourists and definitely shady.
The beach was absolutely breathtaking. It stretches on forever. The water is a beautiful blue against white sand. Once again the only problem is, we paid for adults only, and there are kids all over the beach from neighboring resorts. We were asked quite often for beach drink service, which was quite nice.
Lastly we had difficulty on our date of departure. There was a mix-up with our shuttle. The front desk was of little to no help with the ordeal and actually quite rude at 5 in the morning. No one was sent to help us with our luggage. I guess the day you are leaving no one is concerned with your service anymore.
All-in-all, we will not be returning to this hotel. I did not feel it was 5 star in any shape, way, or form. We did not get what we paid for and I also feel there is a lot of false advertising by the Riu.

Room Tip: Stay somewhere else!
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Edinburg, Texas
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2014

I just got back from the Riu Palace Macao Jan 10-17. It was absolutely fabulous! It was our first time in the DR, and we had a pleasant experience. Everything from our check-in, our stay, the food, staff, room, drinks, cleanliness, and final departure was great. It was our honeymoon, and we couldn't have chosen a better place to stay. This was an Adults Only resort, and it was a plus. If your looking for a relaxing, worry free trip stay at the Riu!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North East, Maryland
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2014

I want to start out by saying that I am a planner and do my research before traveling. My boyfriend and I are from New Jersey and stayed at the Riu Palace Macao from January 11-17 2014, and we absolutely loved it. This was both of our first times in the Dominican Republic, and we both would definitely return.

The people writing the negative reviews on here must be difficult and extremely hard to please , because this hotel was the best all-inclusive I have stayed in. These people need to keep in mind that the Dominican Republic is a third world country, and without the resorts, the country would lack more than it already is. This is my third RIU hotel, and my 4th all inclusive. I’ve stayed at the RIU in Ochos Rios Jamaica and the RIU Playacar in Playa Del Carmen Mexico. Both great hotels, however this one in Punta Cana was the best. It is adults only which is a fantastic aspect of this resort. The RIU chain is fantastic. It has the best all-inclusive food. Such a great variety for all meals, if you can’t find something, don’t bother going anywhere on vacation, some people just can’t be pleased. Also, some people are pretty disgusting, saw a lot of non-Americans picking through platters at the buffet. Where are your manners people! Just so wrong!

We booked with a travel agent, as I always do. This is the way to go when traveling out of the country. You will not experience issues as other travels were complaining about- switching you to another hotel, extra charges, etc.

The room was perfectly fine. We showered and slept in there. We had an end room with a huge balcony. AC was nice and cold.

My boyfriend and I are mid-late 20’s, and chose this hotel for a relaxing vacation, which is exactly what we got. Lots of couples in their 40s+, which was perfectly fine with us as we like an older crowd. I did find that there were always things happening at night, shows, events, the carnaval, etc. The entertainment team is fabulous and very friendly. All staff we encountered were friendly. Keep in mind, the staff works very hard/long hours and they deserved to be tipped. If you can afford vacation, you can afford to tip the staff for their great service. We tipped at every meal, breakfast lunch and dinner, drinks, maids, etc. It was disturbing to see people, especially non-Americans, not tipping. The dinner meals would be over $100 at a restaurant in the states, and the wait staff does a fantastic job. PLEASE TIP THEM- THEY WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU! We had mimosas waiting for us at breakfast every morning.

We thought the Krystal Restaurant was the best. We went here for lunch and dinner multiple times. Go for the lunch, it is quiet and not widely known about. The food is great! We also ate at the steakhouse and the Italian restaurant. Both good. Remember, you are not in America in a New York City Steakhouse. Also, try the Mamajuana, a drink custom to The Dominican Republic. My boyfriend loved this as a nightcap. We played a beach balloon toss game one of the days and we both won a small bottle to take home as well.

The beach was amazing, which is one of the main reasons I chose this hotel. The ocean water was warm and the sand was soft. We spent a lot of time in the ocean and on the beach. We also spent time at both pools, swim up bar and the regular pool. These were both very clean and not very crowded. The weather we had couldn’t have been better. Sunny every day. Keep in mind this is the Caribbean, so it is going to rain at some point. It rained for a short period of time at night for 2 of the days (15 mins max).

We didn’t do any excursions, but went to the spa. The facial left more to be desired (not worth it), and my boyfriend loved his massage. There’s no reason to leave the hotel, you have everything you need! We seemed to be in the nicer RIU.

It was only a 25 minute drive from the hotel to the airport. It takes about 1.5-2 hours in the airport, as expected at any airport. Nothing to complain about.

This resort is FABULOUS, and you would be crazy not to stay here. It was beyond wonderful and we can’t wait to return!

Room Tip: We had a room facing the entrance to the hotel but above the service area. It was loud at night as t...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Albany, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2014

We are a married couple aged 45/51. We are neither very young nor very old. We stayed from January 11-18, 2014

Check-in/out:
Check in was very swift and the front desk staff was EXTREMELY accommodating. We initially were sent to room 3099 but asked to be moved immediately. It was located on a corner overlooking the kitchen and staff walkways. It was VERY loud!!! Also, it was a very small room with a queen bed. They offered to upgrade us for a fee, but we simply stated that we were not looking for a better view but a better location. Once we settled that, they graciously moved us to room 3091 which was a much better room even if it was just down the hall. It was larger and much quieter. Every day we would return from the beach and there would be a beautiful towel animal with flowers waiting for us! We never went without anything…linens, servibar, etc…were always plentiful. We did have an issue with the toilet. It continued to make a gurgling sound at all times of the day/night. It was just easier for my husband to fix it than for us to call to have them come over. Check out was quick. We asked for a late checkout and paid $10 per hour (cash only) to extend our stay to 2pm.
Food/Restaurants:
We were leery of the restaurants because we had not heard much good about them. We were very pleasantly surprised! We went to the Italian Inspired Volaré twice! In order of preference, here is how we would rank the sit down restaurants: 1. Volaré 2. Krystal 3. Pancho 4. Japanese. HINT: Krystal is open for lunch and you can have a full service lunch served to you with very few people around! It was lovely! The buffet @ poolside was “OK”. HINT: Ask the cooks for guacamole and they will give it to you. They no longer serve it on the buffet! We had this snack everyday with chips to hold us over for dinner! Personally while I thoroughly enjoyed both buffets, I am still a little repulsed because I know that the food is being repurposed from the prior day. (This goes for any/all buffets…not just this property!)
Entertainment:
What can I say? This whole team worked VERY HARD at making sure that people had a great time! Brenda, Jeffrey, Alex and Vaquero went out of their way to make sure you were having fun. One thing in particular that my husband and I appreciated was that they never EVER pressured you to participate if you didn’t want to. The shows were very similar to those that we have seen on other islands/properties. They consist of the entertainment team combined with dancers, etc…
Pools/Beach:
We went to all of the properties on site. They were all gorgeous and had their appeal. As far as both pools and beach is concerned, the Riu Palace Macao did not appear to be as crowded as all of the others. It seemed as though people were on top of one another at both the beach and pools at all other properties. They also sounded louder. Don’t get me wrong, we had fun at the pools/beach at Macao, but it had a more tranquil appeal. Being adult only, they seemed to cater to a more mature crowd. However, as the week progressed, we noticed some younger (25-ish) vacationers. This property is definitely not for single people looking for “spring break”.
In all of the reviews that I had read, people showed their displeasure with the pool chairs being saved all day with no inhabitants…..we found out on day 3 just what was going on! Apparently, if you tip the pool boys, they would put towels down on “your spot(s)” to save them for your arrival. This worked out great for us! We had (what we considered) the best seats in the house all week! The downside? If you cannot communicate (they spoke only Spanish) with these young men just when you will be leaving, they will continue to save “your spot”….even if you are gone. I think this is why seats are saved all day with no one to use them.
Bars/Disco:
The bars were always lively and all of the staff was definitely happy to be working at their locations. They were always there with a fresh drink for you. My only real complaint was that the wine was really, REALLY bad! Both red and white wines were not worth ordering at all. As such, I stuck with Beefeater and tonic!
We only went to the disco one night out of our week’s stay. That was on Wednesday night. They were having a “male review” and some of the women we befriended wanted to go. They charged a cover charge and also for our drinks once we entered. This did not sit well with us as we had already paid for an all-inclusive. But, we wanted to have fun, so we went inside. Fortunately for us, we left before the show! From what we were told, it became a very raunchy sex act. There was both male and female dancers…..and was EXTREMELY DEGRADING.

Overall:
The property itself is very well maintained and the staff took great pride in their work. There were shops on the premises that were not as expensive as one would think (Calle Caribena). If you are looking to barter, simply walk down the beach toward the Iberostar to the shacks where you can find everything from coffee to art.
All in all, we had a GREAT vacation. We met wonderful people from all over the world that we plan on keeping in touch with. Would I recommend this resort? Yes. Absolutely.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bronx,NY
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

I just got back from the Riu Palace Macao Jan 13-18, 2014. I have been traveling to DR for about the pas 10 years, and was on a budget so decided to try Punta Cana for the first time. What attracted me to the RIU chain was the face that I have stayed at the Riu Bachata in Puerto Plata , and the Riu Palace Las Americas in Cancun, and absolutely loved what the hotels are all about. Upon arriving to the resort, check-in was 1-2-3 and room was ready upon arrival. Room was perfect, air conditioner cold, shower water hot, couldn't ask for anything more. The grounds are kept pristine, the food in the buffet was delicious, the restaurants were good - don't have too much negatives to say about the property itself EXCEPT -- 24 hr room service as advertised consists of only a triple-Decker club sandwich and chicken Caesar salad which is actually sliced turkey. In other RIU's I remember them having a full service room service menu with basically anything you wanted to order. Now onto the clientele. Adults only could mean one or two things -- groups of 20-30-40 somethings who want a resort without kids and screaming babies OR what I found in this resort -- groups of 60-70-80 year olds sitting around playing cards and sleeping at the pool all day. The bar in the resort is a ghost town after 10am, and the only source of entertainment is the onsite disco - PACHA which is a cash bar. Guys, if your looking to go to the disco to hookup with a lady, go quick. Its disgusting how many tourist females from all over the world are latched onto the Sanky Pankys (DR Male Prostitutes). Dancing, kissing, drinking, and eventually leaving with them. The club is filled with these characters and its a little bit of a turnoff how these girls are with these guys until their boyfriend shows up and then they sit down in the corner until he leaves again.

  • Stayed January 2014, 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Hotel Riu Palace Macao? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Macao

Address: Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
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
#14 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#19 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#20 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#21 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#23 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 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Orbitz, Caribbean Online Mgt Corp., Expedia, Cheap Tickets, BookIt.com, Priceline, TripOnline SA and HotelTravel.com so you can book your Hotel Riu Palace Macao reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Riu Palace Macao Hotel Punta Cana
Riu Palace Macao Punta Cana
Riu Palace Punta Cana
Rui Palace Punta Cana

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Hotel Riu Palace Macao, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.