Reading through the reviews and I was surprised by so many complaints. We were there for 5 days and had a great time. It was what I expected.
Food- We didnt go to the restaurants because we didnt want to bother with reservations. We ate at the buffet and were totally fine with the selection and quality of the food. Honestly I think the only way you could be so offended by the food is if you are exceptionally picky. If you are a "foodie" and expect every meal personally prepared JUST for you, or you are an adult with the palate of a 10 yr old Otherwise I cant imagine not finding something you could eat given the huge selection.
Room- Very well decorated and clean, fully stocked bar, with soft drinks and water. The bed was a bit hard, but no real complaints. TV with channels in English and the free wifi were welcomed comforts.
Beach- Very nice & clean, plenty of chairs GREAT weather 85 degrees with a breeze, very comfortable for laying on the beach and reading, or getting in the water. There were a few beach vendors but they weren't pushy or disturbing at all. The "drinky drinky" guys kept us well fueled on rum. It's very European, so Americans you may see someone in a speedo or a woman sunbathing topless, so check your Puritanism at the door.
Pool- We didnt spend much time in the pool area (I can swim in a pool at home.) Towards the end of the week it became very "Spring Break-y" when a large number of American HSers showed up. They virtually lived at the swim up bar and were loud. The pool does close at 7PM so the rowdiness didnt go into the night.
Excursions- We only did one. It was a bit hap hazard, but that seems to be the Dominican way. It allowed us to see the real DR, which is eye opening- the poverty is shocking. We did get to see coffee plants, cigars being made, coco production and the landscape. I'd give it a B to B-.
Both of us did experience some travelers diarrhea. Despite our best efforts to avoid the water, we both came down with this, and it seemed to be common amongst others we talked to as well, so bring Imodium etc..
BE SURE TO PACK SUNSCREEN!! We did, but heard others say a bottle was selling for $30.
Staff at the resort were fantastic, very friendly and while not all were 100% conversant in English, we had no issues. (The airport is another story.)
Overall a very nice vacation, I wouldnt hesitate to recommend this to friends.
- 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