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Hotel Riu Palace Aruba
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Reviews (6,617)
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Reviewed December 9, 2012

My husband and I just spent 7 nights is sunny Aruba at the RIU Palace. I read many reviews prior to traveling so that I could compare with my thoughts to see if what some of these people had to say were indeed legitimate complaints.

Yes, I will tell you that as you enter the lobby, there is a musty smell. That seems to be the biggest complaint. You have to realize that the weather in Aruba is very warm and sometimes very humid year round therefore you will have the smell. It's no different at any of the other resorts on the island.

I read complaints about the hard beds but I found the bed to be comfortable. You can request a mattress pad to help soften the bed. The rooms were very clean but did feel damp most of the time. Once again due to the humidity. Housekeeping were very good about cleaning the room immediately after you left it to go eat breakfast. They would bring fresh towels with the turndown service which was nice.

My room was in the main building which was conveniently located for the restaurants and casino but a little bit of a walk to get down to the beach so if you have problems getting around, make sure to go for the rooms located in the middle of the property and located half way between the beach, pool and restaurants.

The RIU Palace is rated higher than some of the high rise resorts but just remember that the pictures that you see in the brochures (you know...the ones with the women in the beaded gowns) it's not like that. It is "resort casual" and you don't need to pack your dressy clothes. The Ala Carte restaurants do require men to wear long pants which I hope that they will change some day. That is a huge complaint and I totally agree!

The main buffet restaurant is spectacular! One of the best that I have enjoyed in all of the Caribbean! You don't really need to eat anywhere else because they change the menu everyday and you will never see anything on the buffet that you may have seen at lunch. They keep the menu changed up! We ate there every evening. The service was amazing.

Nautilus was where we ate ate lunch time and once again, fantastic. I looked forward to lunch because they offered seafood, a salad bar the had everything imaginable and my favorite....Jerk Chicken that was to die for!

So if you have read negative reviews of the RIU Palace Aruba, ignore most of it.....you will not be disappointed. Just go and see it for yourself.....the beauty of the beach, the ocean and great service is what you should be looking for what you travel to Aruba.

Oh, one other thing. The casinos at the high rises were unbelievable. My husband and I made our money back that we spent on this trip within the first hour.....I am not kidding....we did enjoy the casinos!

Room Tip: The rooms in the main tower are nice sized, convenient and quiet with a great view of the pool and the ocean.
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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18  Thank Susanne T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2012

This was our first time in a RIU Palace and we where surprised by the beauty of this hotel.
The place looks big but still there is enough space for everyone.

ROOM/SUITE

At first, there where some problems with our check in, our suite with full sea view was overbooked! So we got a suite in the older part on the first floor. All the staff walks between the restaurants with little maintenance cars on the first floor so I can say the first floor is TO noisy!
We made a complaint and got a suite with side sea view, it had an amazing view and the room was very clean and in good condition, it was on the fourth floor. The Jacuzzi was great ( use bath foam from shower for the Jacuzzi, works great! ), shower has high pressure, good bath products, very nice! Beds where a bit hard but that did not bother me, kingsize so lots of space, tried the mattress topper but does not really help.

FOOD

The food was great for the price we paid for all inclusive!
Breakfast and lunch are superb, you will find anything you need.

Diner was good to, especially the beef in de steakhouse !! Pff that was awesome !!!! I am really a fan of the beef tenderloin and is was superb!!! Of course you can find a better restaurant in Aruba somewhere but it will cost you allot, so for the price you pay at RIU, food quality is very good.

BEACH / POOL

The pool is very well maintained I can say, and looks great! Best pool on Palm Beach!
I got a checkup I think, there where some people that complained earlier in reviews, could
not find any problems in the pool.
The beach at the RIU is also the best spot on Palm Beach! A big white and long beach, more than enough beds, if you really want the best spot, get up early and make a "reservation", but if you don't want to, don't worry, lots of palm trees that give shadow if you need, enough space for everyone !!!

STAFF

Overall the staff was great, friendly and helpful, special thanks to Jacquelina, Chanty, Gomez and Julia who made our stay a really pleasant one!

LOCATION

RIU Palace is really good located compared to Oranjestad and the Airport, also very close to a nice boulevard and shops, restaurants, try Casa Tua next to the Soprano's, best pizza we ever had !!

OVERALL

Even with the problems with checkin I still rate this hotel 5 star, after the problems the hotel gave us more than value for our money! I would recommend everybody to go to the RIU Palace Aruba!

Room Tip: Definitely choose a suite! Side sea view suites are also really beautiful!
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MikeAndJacqueline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 8, 2012

Beautiful hotel and grounds, staff attentive but at times slow to serve especially at the bar areas. Entertainment not brilliant but watchable but quite low key really for 5 star, needs to be sorted out.
Food was amazing with 4 alternative restaurants to go to instead if the usual buffet which was more than enough, bar in the room was a nice benefit before going or dinner, the only downside is the rooms Thomson use are not the suites and are on the right side of the hotel and don't have window blinds or balconies, this wasn't a major problem but to sit out at times late evening we missed, the beach s heaven if you can find a lounger, same story around the pool, hunting or beds even at 8am!! It's very windy but you need it as the heat is mid 30's everyday, trips are good we did the sea walk trip......fantastic, bit scary at first but an amazing experience. Great island and the tour we took was great, a must, would definitely return as this island I felt was more beautiful than Barbados.

Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
1  Thank bengary1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 8, 2012

The Riu was like a palace from entry to exit. It was our first all-inclusive stay anywhere and what a treat!!! Over indulgence doesn't describe it well!!!! We celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary and will never forget it!! The restaurants and staff were awesome. The nightly shows were very entertaining!! The beach is gorgeous!!! We had no problems to report, only wonderful staff and beautiful resort!!! The housekeepers were phenomenal as well as the entire staff throughout the resort!!! Activities at the pool were awesome like afternoon zumba!!! I can't say enough great things!!! Don't hesitate just book it!!!

Room Tip: We were in the main building on the 10th floor and had a junior suite!!! Our balcony overlooked the pool and beach!!!
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank kellybelly712
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2012

We went to this hotel in June this year , lovely hotel , rooms were slightly dated when we asked for a upgrade as we were on our honeymoon( which the travel agent advised we get) they knew nothing about it and said we are fully booked we will move you next week. We asked a few times but never got moved. Food we couldn't fault and drink was all branded alcohol.
Beaches were like paradise and the locals were very friendly. Safe to walk out of a night time.
The only problem was not enough sun beds and you had to get up at 6am to get one.
This location is very windy so take some clips to pin your towels down.
Overall a beautiful location and top hotel would definitely recommend the safari trip !

Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Chris B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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