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“If you like vacationing in a basement with mold, this is your place” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana

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Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa de Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #53 of 102 Hotels in Punta Cana
Atlanta, Georgia
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“If you like vacationing in a basement with mold, this is your place”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2013 via mobile

Mold mold mold mold! This place will make you sick. They cover up the mold in the bathroom with white paint. The mattress is covered in mold. The air condition works half the time. The food is gross. The beach and the pool are over crowded. The drinks are mixed with cheap liquor poured out of a better bottle. Do not go here. Would rate zero star, if I could.

Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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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3,039 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 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (595)
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Sofia
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2013

Great vacation ,the hotel is perfect.The beach,the gardens,the pool zone-everything was well managed and clean.The rooms were nice,the housekeeper was making very good job every day with the bed and everything.The guys in the restorants and bars are very warmhearted especially Chino ,Francesca,Deauris in the buffet,Luis in Plaza Bar ,Angel in the pool bar.Awsome vacation and we will definately come back and will recommend to our friends

  • Stayed January 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CHICAGO, IL
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

We spent a week of our vacation at the Riu Punta Cana in January 2013. I must say the hotel’s architecture was stunning (please refer to the attached pictures), but as much as you will get astonished with the beauty of the place you will also be disappointed with their food. I remembered that the same problem we had when we stayed at the beautiful Riu hotel in Puerto Vallarta in 2010. It seems they only pay attention to the visual side of their hotels, but nothing to the kitchen. Besides the poor food, the room was smelly with fungus on the furniture. It was a 2006 hotel yet already so run down. Our “strive for food” adventure started right after we got there. We went to Don Manuel buffet to have something to eat after the flight, but the pasta cook refused to make me a pasta dish though he just made one for the person ahead of me. He pretended he did not understand me. Then I tried to make a sandwich for my son, but bread was old. I asked the waiter to see a restaurant manager, but my request occurred to be impossible to fulfill. The waiter listened to my complaint and told me that the manager was not there that day. On the way to our room, I stopped at the reception to complain. One of the reception managers told me that they were not responsible for the kitchen and could not handle complaints about the restaurants, so he sent me to my Apple representative across the hall. Later that afternoon we went to another buffet, Altagracia, but only to learn that the hamburgers looked like they had e-coli bacteria, and the pasta or French fries were very, very old and dry. They run out of salad dressing, just about half an hour before closing and would not bring more. That evening, we went to the Brazilian restaurant to find overcooked and uneatable meat. The same happened day after day: old bread, unappetizing food, bad coffee. I stopped at Apple vacation representative’s desk and complained about all that as well as about very dirty swimming pool with huge oil stain and dirt accumulation in one corner of the pool. The spill in the pool got cleaned overnight, but food did not get better. On the evening day second we dined at Italian “gourmet” restaurant. We ordered three different dishes. The meat, again, was extremely dry; my son called it “beef-flavored chewing gum.” The food was old and prepared well in advance of the serving. All three dishes (meat, fish and lasagna) came with sauce, but it was dry, and the basil used to garnish the food had turned black from heating lamps. We sent all food back and left the restaurant. None asked us why we were leaving!! One the third day, simply because we were hungry, I went back to the reception and demanded to talk to hotel manager. They escorted me to the manager’s office. I told the manager about our culinary experiences in his hotel. His answer was that he had not such complaints before, that the only people complaining sometimes were visitors from Chicago and New York! Clever, but not wise. I just asked him to walk around those places, look at the food and try it if he was brave enough. For the last three evenings, we have dinner at the steak house. We stuck to that restaurant because it was the best Riu Punta Cana had to offer. So, considering the food, the pretty architecture of the hotel was not worth the money. Moreover, it had nothing to offer for kids, no pool toys, no activities for them.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
DeWitt, Iowa
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

We just returned from a week long stay at the RIU PALACE PUNTA CANA. We enjoyed every minute of our trip. We are three couples that take a trip every winter. We never stay at the same place twice so we look forward to each resort we go to. Tidbits on our trip.

Check in - we were met at the door with open arms and given drinks and gifts. We were checked in in less than 10 minutes. Erik was very through with everything. Our rooms were located on the main floor - facing the neighboring property. We were ok with that. It was a clean and quiet property.

Rooms - we're clean and stayed that way throughout the week. We did see a bug or two, but they scurried away when spotting movement. We did have a problem with our toilet the first night. It took 3 calls to the front desk and me going down to the front desk to ask again for someone to come and look at it. Maid service was very good -rooms were made up early everyday. You can get free wifi in the rooms, just ask the front desk for a login. Sure beats having to go to the lobby to check in at home.

Food- we ate at the steakhouse, the brazil, the italian, and the gourmet restaurants. We were not impressed with the steakhouse or the Italian restaurants. The brazil restaurant was our favorite. You have to like meat to eat there. Service at all three was excellent. We at at the buffet our first night there. It was very good. I wished there would have been a outdoor BBQ for lunch instead of having to go into the buffets, but we survived. Breakfast was the normal breakfast fare. Wished there would have have been some sausage or ham on the lines - but the bacon was good.

Entertainment - nightly entertainment was not very good. We have been to other Riu's and enjoyed the entertainment better.

Pool service - drinks were available all the time. Leo the lion came around and keep our cups full. Nice guy. Best of luck in the future.

Beach - Punta Cana has the best beaches we have ever been to. Sand is like walking on flour. There are plenty of waves that can roll you over, but that's the fun of it all. There is always a breeze to stay cool in the 90 degree temps.

We walked about a mile and a half down the beach to a flea market style shops for things to bring back home. Don't pay full price for anything there, work them down on the price. That's what they live for.

We checked out the other RIU resorts next to the palace punta Cana. They were all very nice,but the palace has the most ambiance. Very elegant.

We enjoyed every minute of our trip and look forward to next year. COSTA RICA maybe? Ay suggestions on where to stay?

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Claremont, New Hampshire
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

Just got back Feb 7th from a five night stay. Our first trip to the Dominican. This is our 5th all inclusive in the carribean and was definitely the best. The resort is not so large that you can not get around comfortably. The rooms are great, super clean and we always found our room in perfect order. Food here is also very good including all the specialty resturants. Beach is beautiful, service very friendly. I think that this resort should be ranked higher than it is. If you don't want a mega resort this place fits the bill perfectly!!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: Second floor is great , no need for the elevator and I would choose a room toward the beach.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mississauga, Canada
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

This was a great vacation hotel is lovely. The tour operator however delayed our flight with no explanation for 12hours . We will be arriving at 330 in the morning. This was not a weather delay. We were told that the other flight operated by Sunwing was leaving on time but we would have to purchase a ticket to get on it. Hmmm thought we had already purchased a ticket.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Marlboro, New Jersey
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013

We arrived to this beautiful property with awesome decoration and the place is enchanting. Registration was a problem as they tried to place us in the worst room which is in the extreme corner of the building in the back which is 1001, beware. I even gave the front desk guy a tip while they were getting the rooms done. So don't bother just make sure you get in the higher floors. The food at the main buffet is the best, as the so called restaurants, Italian, steak house and so on are not really that great. Service was very good and the staff is very friendly and helpful, The pools are very nice and the drinks are not bad at all. the place is really nice and the beach area is really nice also. Save your towels the day before in order to reserve your chairs early in the morning, the towel hut opens at 8:00 am, so after breakfast go to your reserved chairs and exchange the towels then.
Lunch was readily accessible and there is always some where to eat if you are hungry. Our family got very sick we don't know if from the water or the environment as many people was in the same situation. Drink bottle water as much as you can, since ice is the regular water.

Room Tip: Anything in the top floors.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana

Address: Playa de Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, 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 Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#38 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#41 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#43 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#44 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#45 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#48 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana 4*
Number of rooms: 612
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

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