Given this was an award trip, I wasn't sure what to expect. However, I was pleasantly surprised, and would consider returning here on my own dime. This was my first introduction to the Riu Palace experience, and I'd like to try the Riu again.
Actually, contrary to previous reviews, I found the buffet to be acceptable. Way better than typical cruise line buffets. The specialty restaurants were a nice break from the buffet, but didn't offer extraordinary food. If dining at the buffet, stay away from the left side of the seating, as the bus-cart traffic sounds like you are sitting under the elevated trains of Chicago.
The beach was beautiful - and much cooler with its breeze than the pool area. Plenty of low palms provided necessary shade - provided you got out there early- mid-morning to claim your spot.
The spa pricing was reasonable, but the service was not over-the-top. I'd rather pay more for spa service, and get more in return.
The beds are indeed "firm"... if you are used to a memory foam bed, then this will be a shock.
There is a Casino shuttle which makes the rounds every 10 minutes to take you to the Casino at the Rui Palace Macao - still within the larger compound of 4 or so Rui properties. The Casino seems about the same size as riverboat casinos, and offered a good diversion from typical resort activities... and oh, they served the strongest "free" drinks on the compound - I wonder why ;-).
Any final wishes? I wish I had brought a fistful of singles for token tips - as the staff is deserving of a little extra recognition, even though this is an all-inclusive resort.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana * Inside the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Macao, Riu Taino, Riu Naiboa hotels and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu * 4-story building * Surrounded by 63,000 m2 / 75,000 sq. yards of lush gardens * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 50 km / 31 miles from Hig??ey * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Int???l. Airport ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Palace Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
- Punta Cana Riu Palace
- Riu Palace Hotel Punta Cana