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“1/3 of trip gone, 2/3 remaining time...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro

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Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa de Arena Gorda | Punta Cana, Punta Cana 74100, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #41 of 100 hotels in Punta Cana
Chicago
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“1/3 of trip gone, 2/3 remaining time...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

Wife and I booked through Apple vacations, we had a direct flight from Chicago. We came for a week, spent two nights so far and five to go! Pool and beach are amazing. Rooms are very nice. We experienced no mustiness or bug problems other have posted. We had a 230PM flight arrival, and by the time we cleared customs and got to the resort is was 330PM. Check in was easy, but we were starving after a long flight and having been up since 5AM. Buffet closes at 3PM until 630. Very disappointing that the only food the resort had to offer was a refrigerator/cooler located in the sports bar with pre-made burgers, hot dogs, ham and cheese sandwiches and nacho chips with cheese. Re-heating pre-cooked sandwiches on buns in only ONE microwave with Spanish control buttons was unacceptable! This cooler is the source for the lame room service, so if you are hungry just walk to the sports bar and pick up your own snack. I suggest RIU have a panini press and have employee making sandwiches to order and provide single serving bags of chips for arriving guests from North America. I get it, Europeans have morning arrival and with the time difference can make it to lunch. Geez, people were backed up waiting for a turn to reheat a chilled sandwich. Check in time is 3PM, so if you arrive close to 3, try to get right to the buffet before you go to the room.
All the seated specialty restaurants are arranged in advance. So our first night we went right to the buffet at 630PM after eating a microwave hamburger and 3 or 4 drinks. The evening buffet was disappointing. This whole resort caters to Germans, the Sensimar section of this resort is is German only and all the restaurants aim to please that demographic. I'm first generation German, so I know German cuisines and the evening buffet has several varieties of boiled potatoes, pickled beets, lunch meats,salami, speck and many cheeses, hard rolls, European bitter salads, weird salad dressings. The carving station had carved pork shank. I like schweina hoxen,(sp) but it is a fatty roast pork leg. They did have a pasta made to order station that was pretty good. I wanted a basic chicken or beef with rice.

The breakfast buffet is fantastic. eggs to order, waffles, french toast sweets and fruits. Of course they also have the lunchmeat variety too, Germans dig their hard rolls mit speck!

The first morning we got in dinner reservation line right at 8AM and the line was 10 deep! get there at 745AM if you want to beat out the Germans:) You can arrange for that evening and two more consecutive nights. By 830AM all reservations are gone for that night, and one restaurant is closed the following night. One Can't schedule a meal more than 3 days out. Maybe its the low season, but every night one restaurant is closed on a rotation basis. BTW, there also Sensimar German only restaurant right next to the Italian, French and Japanese restaurants. So Sensimar gets there own restaurant, private pool, (like the VIP area) and compete for rare restaurant reservations when they have a restaurant just for them!

Buffet lunch is at the steak house restaurant, and quite good. grilled chicken, burgers, pizza, pastas.
Good bar service, tip your bartender and leave a single on the table when at the buffet! I gave a buck or two every round and they are very attentive. Before I left i got $65 in one's.
As for the booze factor, they will use cheap rail booze if you do not request a brand. The good rum they have is Brugal. Ask for their good stuff and tip the bartender. If you think its too weak, ask them to make it a double.
Bring your own plastic cups from home, they use these 8oz plastic juice cups for every beverage request, so if you have a souvenir beer cup bring it. Also bring your own beach towels from home. I am afraid to lose a towel and getting charged $40 to replace the lost towel card. We forgot to do that. Also if you are a smoker, bring them from home. I thought a pack of cigs would be cheaper here than home, but its not, $7 per pack! I gotta quit, but in Cancun it was like $4 or $5/pack and figured it would be cheaper here.

Ignore the weather channel! We were really bummed that the Punta Cana forecast had five days in a row with 40-60% chance of continuous rain showers in their ten day forecast.

Tonight we are going to the sushi place, and tomorrow the steak house, and then the french.

More to come

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (404)
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  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Lexington, Kentucky
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

I stayed in the VIP area which is the only way to go. You have a private adult only pool. No wait for drinks no wait for pool beds. The main pool was packed. You have to stay in the villas which are nice. You also get canned beer at that area. Now the food was horrible. The steak house was a joke. Get the ribs. I eat a lot of sushi and Japanese and their restaurant had gas station grade sushi. The buffet was the only place to eat. Also the restaurants were only open every other day. I met some great new friends here and the atmohere is good. Every person I spoke to was as shocked as I was over the food. Loved my stay just disappointed in the lack of food options. Weather was great. Rained one evening shortly.

Room Tip: Vip only. Far better service and relaxing.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Scotland, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

Travelled here for 2 weeks in September 2013 with my boyfriend we are 21 & 22. We flew with Thomson from Manchester and were delayed 4 hours on way out & 2 on the way back! It is very common for flights to be delayed to Punta Cana but the flights with Thomson were good only about 7 hours each way!

Generally - the resort has 3 pools (1 for VIP, 1 for sensimar guests which are a German tourist company and 1 for guests in general) it is marketed as an a la carte hotel by Thomson which in our opinion shouldn't be the case as the focus is not on food in this hotel rather than fancy presentation etc which is all well and good but when the food itself and service are suffering as a result of this it really should be projected as a 5 star premium rather than an a la carte. There are hotels in Mexico etc which aren't rated by thomson in their a la carte range but the food quality and standard is far superior!

Rooms - We were in the VIP section of the resort, we didn't upgrade as we were asked by several other British guests but that was the room we were given by thomson and tbh we had no complaints about it. We were lucky enough to be given a VIP room with a jacuzzi outside on the terrace. All the rooms are the same even VIP only difference is the location and some VIP rooms have a jacuzzi outside too. Rooms are big, bright and modern. Mini bar is fully stocked with soft drinks and water and there is an alcohol optics dispenser that has premium brand vodka,gin,rum and whiskey in it. The rooms have a jacuzzi bath inside too but it only fits one person. Huge plasma tv with over 100 channels is included. Room was cleaned daily by maids and they always left a towel decoration. VIP rooms come with an umbrella too which comes in handy for the occasional rain shower at night whilst walking to dinner.

Pool - we stuck to the VIP pool which suited us nicely, it is adults only and right on the beach which is handy. Drinks service is included by the pool and to be honest it was very poor. One day there was no service at all. It was never busy which didn't bother us as there is a swim up bar which u could use instead.

Beach- beautiful! No other words for it and we loved going a big walk along in the morning and passing all the other hotels. If u walk far up enough there is a wee market stall with the looky looky men.

Food- for us this was a big let down! No way should this be a a la carte hotel! The service in the a la carte restaurants was slow and it didn't seem like service but more like they were ticking off a list as they went along. The buffet "montecristo" is huge! You eat breakfast, lunch and dinner in here if you like. Breakfast was fantastic but again slow in the sense that unless I was waving money around they weren't interested in getting me a drink. The choice was fab from fresh fruit, cereals, fry up, omelette station, pancakes and waffles. The food on offer at breakfast was enough choice for 2 weeks. Lunch was good too and we only had dinner a few times as we had paid for an a la carte hotel so would rather those than a buffet for dinner. However when we did have dinner and lunch the food was a good selection.

A la carte restaurants- this and the service is what really lets this hotel down as it tries too hard! We ate in all of them and if I'm honest I've had better at cheaper all inclusive not 5 stars! The Italian was ok the pasta was always over cooked and stuck to the plate - we did however meet a brutish man who was out for 5 days with food poisoning after eating in the Italian and everyone knew about it but I must say my boyfriend was fine after eating the chicken and if anything he said it was just too tough and over cooked! The Japanese was probably the best service and the food was probably best in there! The Krystal fusion was awful! In the restaurant I asked for a vodka lemonade to be told rudely I could only have a soft drink, beer, wine or champagne! As he would have to go to the bar for it! Suffice to say I wasn't happy when the girl at the table next to me flashed a $10 note at him and he went and got one quite happily for her! I never stayed for dessert as it ruined the whole meal and to be perfectly honest the food wasn't fantastic in it. The steak house was the a la carte we used the most and u didn't order a starter u got a sea food platter and a Caesar salad? Bit crap if u don't like fish or Caesar salad and by the 3rd time eating in it I couldn't stomach it again! Service again wasn't fantastic and food quality poor. The surf and turf Is a tiny steak and 2 lobster tails and won't blow u away by any means. Desserts at any a la carte weren't fantastic usually a mousse or custard of some sort and flavourless. Service at the coffee shop and bars was fantastic and they should really take note in the a la carte as in the bars I never had a half empty glass once and in the a la cartes I had to practically beg for a drink! However there is no Malibu available? Rubbish in a premium brand 5 star all inclusive in the Caribbean! So I just drunk amaretto. Cocktails are good and spirit measurements will blow ur socks off!

Trips- we did santo Domingo and Caribbean cruising. Capital delights was awful and boring. The Caribbean cruising is well worth the money! Saona island is the most beautiful place I have ever been!

Thomson rep Biana is fantastic! She is there for u literally at any time!

We wouldn't return to this Riu, it is the top Riu in the complex and it totally lets itself down with food and service!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Oxford, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2013 via mobile

After reading a lot of reviews on here I was a little worried but had such an amazing time!

Rooms we were in the main building on the third floor and didn't have anything to complain about. Our room was really big, comfortable and there was no damp smell or insects! The bathroom is all open plan but there is a curtain which you can pull across if you do want privacy. Could not fault the cleaning of the room either, I enjoyed a birthday while here and they decorated our room beautifully.

Service throughout the resort was fantastic! Found that everyone in all the bars and restaurants could not do enough to help you. Although we tipped don't feel you have to the staff in the main just wanted you to show them some attention and engage with them. Special mention to Mateo in the swim up bar and Edwin at the theatre bar they were both exceptional!

The quality of drinks were good and premium brands were in all the bars. Cocktail choice was also really good and enjoyed the martins!

The food is probably my only real complaint, not that it was bad just didn't really change in the main restaurant. The a la carte restaurants were good though my favourite was the Japanese but the others were also good. No problems with making reservations and never really had to queue either.

The beach was stunning and they were always trying to clear up the seaweed to keep the sea clear. The sea was always a beautiful turquoise!

Hope this review helps and I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
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Ft. Lauderdale, FL
2 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

I booked a 5 day stay through Travelocity 9/16/13 - 9/20/13. Travelocity's website only gave 3 room-view options (Garden, Pool and Ocean) and the highest category was a Jacuzzi room which I was not interested in. I elected to have an ocean view room in the VIP area of the hotel which catered to adults only and paid a little extra in the process. Upon arrival to the hotel (which was well after the 3PM check-in) I was attended by a young man named "Luis" who told that my room was not ready and it seemed as if he was scrambling to get me key card and other arrival docs. I made it a point of mentioning to him to ensure that I got an ocean view room as per my reservations. When I got to the room, the key cards did not work and I had the bell hop bring me the right key cards. Upon entering the room, it was clearly not ocean view but pool view. By now I was getting frustrated and walked back to the reception area to complain and get the room that I paid extra for. I felt that in their haste to make up for not having had the room ready, they simply gave me this one. I approached Luis and stated that my room did not have an ocean view but a pool view. He insisted it had both. I told him my room was behind the towel station and I know the difference between a pool view and an ocean view and he was welcome to take a look himself as the ocean was not within sight. By this time, I insisted on speaking with the manager, Joanna Silvestre de Moya. Ms. Moya was very nice but clearly gave me the same argument. She further insisted that the rooms facing the ocean were considered ocean front and not ocean view. I explained that I booked through Travelocity and there was no mention of ocean front. Had there been, that is what I would have reserved and paid for. I then expressed my dissatisfaction to her stating the delay in the room being ready, the key cards not working and the room view issue. She clearly noticed my frustration and said that she would provide me a “free” upgrade to an ocean front Jacuzzi suite. Given the outcome, I thanked her but mentioned that there is room for improvement so that others don’t experience this type of reception upon arrival to their hotel.

The room she gave me was lovely, clean and had a great view, however, the first night there was a lot of banging and quite a commotion around 3AM. This was due to some rowdy tourists in the same building that were clearly drunk. This same situation arose the last night of my stay and upon contacting the front desk to complain, they sent a security guard to address the situation. Lesson learned: You can’t choose your neighbors and money comes in all shapes and sizes. Need I say more?

The VIP area had its own private pool but lacked drink service. The music being played was annoying and loud. I love the cultural interaction but would have preferred soft, instrumental or New Age type music. I got the impression that the music being played was for entertainment of the staff and not the guests. Be advised that there is a 3rd pool area of the hotel which was not open to the general public or the VIP guests but to a German-based private tour operator. They even have their own restaurant.

The food in the main dining room was good. The specialty restaurants were tastefully decorated and the food was good also. The grounds were kept nicely. The beach was lovely. The staff was friendly and attentive. The evening shows were “OK” and the bar service was very good during the evening shows.

Overall, nice property but with a few minor tweaks, would be better…

Room Tip: Would not consider paying the extra money to stay in the VIP section as it clearly was not worth the...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Wallingford, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

We stayed at the Riu Palace Bavaro from the 30 August for 14 nights. My husband and I travelled together as a couple with Thomson.

Now, where to start. We had originally booked the Riu Bambu, but after reading some pretty shockingly bad reviews, we paid Thomson to upgrade to the Palace Bavaro. And I’m really glad we did. We checked out the Bambu one day, and it is not a patch, NOT A PATCH on the Palace Bavaro! If you can afford the extra £900 to go to the Palace Bavaro and you are considering the Bambu, please book the Palace Bavaro. Obviously we didn’t eat, drink, use the facilities at the Bambu, but just by looking at the place, the impression we got was not a good one.

But, back to my review of Riu Palace Bavaro.

Airport
We paid for Premium seats with Thomson, and this must have been why we got Premium Gatwick. You skick the massive check in queue and Premium have their own check in. Once you’ve dropped your bag off, you go to Premium Security, there was hardly anyone ahead of us, and we went straight through. The whole process must have taken 10 minutes – that’s what you want so early in the morning! Straight through to duty free (and a glass of bubbly at the Caviar bar!)

Flights
Both outbound and inbound were brilliant. As I mentioned, we travelled Premium through Thomson and I would highlt recommend this if you are flying long haul. You get a bigger seat, more leg room, you don’t have to pay for head phones, you have your own TV in the seat in front of you, you can chose what you want to watch from a good selection, the food is great (for plane food) you choose your main course off a menu, real cutlery, glass glasses, pillow, blanket, unlimited free drinks (apart from champagne), brilliant service both ways, no delays, the 8.5 hours passed in the blink of an eye while you are watching some films and drinking a few holiday beverages!

Transfers
As the Riu Palace Bavaro is part of Thomsons A La Carte range of hotels, you do not get a coach transfer, you get a private taxi (both ways) and what a joy that is! No having to sit on a coach and stop at a number of hotels before you get to yours. Straight in the taxi (the driver is waiting in the terminal with you name and hotel on a sign) and straight off to the hotel.

Arrival at the hotel
All the Riu hotels are situated on one complex quite close together, as we drove up to the Palace Bavaro, it is a lovely large modern building, within excellently kept grounds, everything is so clean and tidy. The gardeners work SO hard all day long.
We were greeted in Reception and immediately were checked in, given a map of the hotel, our room key and pool towel cards and our bags taken off us (which we taken to our room for us). Reception speak fantastic English. We then made our way up to our room and our bags followed us about 5 minutes after we got there.

This might be a good point to mention about tipping. Although tipping isn’t mandatory, we felt like we wanted to tip. And this was recognised by your servers, and they can’t do enough for you. They can’t do enough for you anyway, but if you tip, they know that you appreciate all what they do for you. We took US Dollars away with us, and we took to start off with $80 in $1 bills (we spent a total of $130 on tips for the 2 weeks we were there) Which is nothing really in the grand scheme of things. As a general rule we tipped the bell boys $5, the taxi driver $10, every time we got a round of drinks we tipped our server $1, left $2 at breakfast lunch and dinner, and if the pool servers got us a drink we gave them $2.

Rooms
As standard, the rooms are suites. It is ALL open plan including the bathroom. (The loo and shower is enclosed in their own separate cubicles but that is it) There are double sinks, a Jacuzzi bath in the middle of the room that we took advantage of most days. We were allocated a room with 2 double beds pushed together, which we didn’t mind (you get 2 weeks of decent sleep haha) flat screen wall mounted TV, sofa, coffee table and table & 2 chairs. On the balcony there are 2 chairs and a little table. Our view over looked the sandy area with tables, chairs, hammocks, day beds with the evening entertainment area just beyond that. The rooms are incredible, very modern, décor is white, pink and purple, with coloured glass bricks. There are optics in the room (bottles of beefeater gin, Smirnoff vodka, rum and whiskey), a fridge which is restocked every few days with water, soft drinks and beer, and there is a filter coffee machine which does 2 big mugs of coffee. We had this every morning before going to breakfast. Shower is an excellent pressure, there is a hairdryer in the room which I used every day, and my GHD’s worked no problem. Take the round 2 pin plugs with you.

Restaurants
The main buffet restaurant – Monte Cristo
You dine in here for breakfast, lunch and dinner. You also have the option of dining at the restaurant by the pool for lunch (that’s where we ate most days, or some days they do a BBQ on the beach for lunch) There is so much choice, wide ranges of fresh salads, lots of fruit, breakfast you can have omelettes made for you, eggs cooked any way, full English, cereals, porridge, waffles, pancakes, breads, cakes, pastries, meats, cheeses, yoghurt, fresh juices. The waiters bring you your tea/coffee/champagne (for breakfast!!!!) and you can call them over as many times as you like for re-fills.
Lunch at the buffet again so much choice, fruit, salads, fresh fish, chicken, meats, rice, chips, pizza, hot dogs, beef burgers etc, even had a gorgeous seafood paella one lunch (which my waiter brought me over a wash bowl for my fingers and a glass of bubbly without me asking!)
Dinner again so much choice, there is a great pasta station which they cook fresh pasta for you and add your choice of sauce which was amazing, best spag bol ever!! They have local Dominican food, such as goat stew which was so tasty and melt in the mouth, then all the usual buffet foods, we never got bored.

We also tried out all of the speciality restaurants, which you have to book for in the morning, and you can book a few days in advance, we never had a problem booking a restaurant if we wanted one.

There is a Steak Restaurant (which is also the pool side restaurant for lunch), Krystal (fine dining – this was my favourite), Geisha (Japanese – amazing) and an Italian (was ok, nothing special)
It was our anniversary and my birthday while we were out there and we booked speciality restaurants for both those evenings, both nights were incredible. Such amazing food, well presented, lovely service, you really felt like you were eating out when you dined at those restaurants.

Bars
There is a swim up pool bar which is refreshing of an afternoon, an indoor sports bar which is about -10 degrees (well air-conditioned haha), the Daiquiri bar which is in the hotel lobby – had a yummy chocolate martini in there, and the evening bar next to the stage where the entertainment happens of an evening. Real glasses are used everywhere apart from around the pool. We didn’t have any problem with the alcohol, we didn’t think it was watered down (the champagne seems to be VERY low alcohol though) my only grumble is that they don’t have Malibu/or equivalent. I’m in the Caribbean and can’t get a coconut rum – whats that about!!

Evening Entertainment
The evening entertainment was so-so. What you’d expect while you are on holiday. Easy to watch, but nothing special. A couple of the shows are really good though. We went to the Casino at Riu Macao a few nights which was really good fun and spent a few dollars (and won some!) on the roulette table. Drinks are free in there as well as long as you are playing. We also went to the disco Pacha on our last night which ok when they were playing songs that you knew!! It seemed to be quite local, and the later it got, the more the workers appeared and the music changed. There is nothing else to do really. But we didn’t mind, we ate quite late, had a few drinks, watched the show and went to bed, waking up every day fresh as a daisy to enjoy the day ahead.

Day Entertainment
Now, this would be my only criticism of the hotel. Don’t get me wrong, the entertainment staff work really hard, all day and in the evening, but what they do during the day is the same EVERY day, you could set your watch by it. And they music they play is the same EVERY day, there seems to be something going on all the time. There sometimes seems to be no escape from it. The hotel is situated right on the beach, and the pool is right on the beach so you can hear the music where ever you are. There are also a few of the entertainment team (I name no names) that are really annoying! Like really try and bug you into taking part (I’m not a joiner, I just like to be left along and read my book or snooze) and one of them (after we had turned down an offer to join in with something) mad some comment about us wasting our holiday by not joining in! Hmmm, not impressed with that! We’ve paid £3500 for this holiday, I’ll do what I want thank you!

Facilities
Pool – there is one pool that you are able to use (the other pool is for the VIP villas only), but it is clean, cool and just what you want. Also has a good design, pleasing to the eye.
Spa – I had a manicure and an OPI gel overlay, last really well and cost $35 not overly excessive
Gym – 4 treadmills, 2 cross trainers, 1 stepper, 1 bike and some weight machines (3), well air-conditioned, towels provided and water (I went a few times)
Beach – is lovely and clean, white sand, beautiful turquoise warm water, but the sea is choppy! Big waves. I have to say that I prefer the beaches in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. As the water is calmer, there isn’t as much seaweed etc floating around in the water and on the beach itself.

Weather
We travelled in hurricane season, the first 5 days were beautiful clear skies, 30+ degrees, bit of wind, scattered clouds with a few afternoons of full on rain, but the next 4 days were torrential back to back rain and the temperature dropped. We were told this was because we had got the tail end of a storm that hit Mexico. After that the weather picked up and went back to how it was at the beginning of our trip. But with a few showers of rain in the afternoon that went as quickly as they came. I have to say that I got the best tan I’ve had in a long time, and I’m quite fair.

General
We didn’t take any trips so we can possibly comment on that, but what I can say is that they are very expensive. I think parasailing on the beach was $80 per person.
In fact the area is very expensive. We ran out of shower gel and bought some in the hotel ship and it was $9 USD. Gifts are really expensive – like $5 dollars for a fridge magnet! There is a few gift shops, a pharmacy, tobacconist on Caribbean Street just behind the hotel. A carton of 200 cigarettes Marlborough Menthol was $39.
Knowing a little Spanish will get you a long way, it is very appreciated.
Punta Cana airport is a little chaotic, lots of queuing and it is really hot in there! But there is an open section for smoking. There is also a Wendy’s! We bought a double cheeseburger meal, and a kids meal (for me  ) and it cost $15.

So, I hope that you have found this review of some interest, I’ve put some pictures up as well. I would definitely recommend this hotel to a friend, although not a family. There is not much to keep kids amused. Couples or groups. If anyone has any questions, I’m happy to answer them. Enjoy your holiday to Riu Palace Bavaro, and I’m extremely jealous! x

Room Tip: If you dont like your room, dont be afraid to ask to change it!
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blandon, Pennsylvania
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2013

Stayed at Riu Bavarro last October. Decor is Jetson's go to Vegas. Beach is beautiful. Majority of staff were rude. Drinks watered down and the wine was awful. Food was a big disappointment. I expected fresh fish but they offered salmon. What we thought before eating were lamb chops were Spam balls with a lamb chop bone stuck in them and then fried. The steak house was wonderful one night and awful on another. By the third day my husband, myself and another couple were anxious to go home. We have stayed at other Riu's and they all got a great review from me. P.S. Stay out of casino. Very dishonest and shady.

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro

Address: Playa de Arena Gorda | Punta Cana, Punta Cana 74100, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
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 Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #41 of 100 hotels in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro 4*
Reservation Options:
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