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“Fabulous hotel and fabulous island!”

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Hotel Riu Palace Aruba
Ranked #18 of 24 Hotels in Palm - Eagle Beach
Certificate of Excellence
London, Ontario, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Fabulous hotel and fabulous island!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 25, 2013

My husband and I just returned from the Riu Palace Aruba - we were there from January 14-23, 2013 for our honeymoon. I had some reservations after reading some pretty negative reviews prior to leaving but the worries were all for nothing. The hotel is fabulous! It is so clean and well maintained. Yes, it is a little dated and needs some updating in places but so what? The staff were cordial -not overly outgoing but certainly not unfriendly as some people would lead you to believe. Anything you needed, they took care of. Housekeeping was in 2-3 times per day to tidy up and replenish towels and mini-bar. We had a junior ocean view suite - 7th floor in the main building facing right onto the ocean - two large windows in the room. For some reason, the way the buildings are set leads to a very nice cross breeze that you don't get at any other resort- so although it was hot, it was always breezy. Made it much more comfortable.

Food was nothing short of amazing. For an all-inclusive large buffet, the food was pretty spectacular. The a la carte restaurants were just ok for me. Nothing to rave about- we went to the steak place, the Italian, and the Krystal Fusion restaurant once each. But truly, we preferred the buffet. The food was always hot and tasty and the presentation was excellent. Staff were always friendly and quick to get you whatever you wanted. The drinks were definitely NOT watered down- they were strong!

There were a couple of things we didn't like about this resort however. The main thing was that the wireless in the rooms was practically non-existent. On a good day, if you positioned your device just right beside the tv, you might get wireless access but that's about it. Considering all the other hotels have excellent wireless access, there is simply no excuse for the Riu NOT to have good wireless service. This was our one big complaint - as a Canadian, using our cell phones is just not an option due to the high roaming so online was the main way to keep in touch and it really didn't pan out. Come on Riu - get with the times and update your wireless!!!

Overall, this was a fabulous resort and experience. We would definitely recommend the resort to anyone and will go there again!

Room Tip: Pay the extra and stay in the ocean view rooms in the main building. Get the rooms with a window AN...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
16 Thank Susan A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,251)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
44 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 25, 2013

We Stayed at the Rui Palace in August of 2012 and had really great time. The food was great and there wwas always a wide range of different things you could try in the main buffet resturant and for your eveing meal you could book a table at one of the four al-carte resturants within the hotel grounds. Drink was plentifal as you would expect at an all inclusive. The staff were very helpfu and nothing was too much trouble for them - one night when serving crepes in the resturant my husband (who it must be said can be a little traditional in his approach to food) wanted lemon with his crepes instead of the wide range of fillings on offer and after voicing his wishes to the Manager on duty was duly served with a plate of freshly sliced lemon and a wide smile - lovely!!
We had booked a suite and we were not disappointed with what we got - a huge room with an extra large very comforatble bed - lounge area with large flat screen tv and an in-room bar which was filled up every day and a large walk around balcony that looked out over the ocean - what more do you need!!! -
Would suggest that anyone visiting Aruba makes the time at the end of the day to watch the sunset - with a glass of something refreshing in your hand you'll know then that you are truly on holiday.

Room Tip: Ask for an ocean view - you will pay more but its worth it
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank misterhugo59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 24, 2013

My Husband and I just returned from Aruba. This was are 8th visit to the island. First time at a Riu resort. Staff was good and food was good. The speciality restaurants were understanding to my Celiac disease ( Gluten Allergy) so dining at them was Ok
One issue we had was pool umbrella's - we always had to find someone to help put the umbrella up. The pool is wonderful and staff great even when I asked for help with umbrella's. My Husband had a recent shoulder injury so the umbrella was always an issue.
If the hotel could have staff ask guest if they wish the umbrella up - it would be helpful.
Wonderful idea.

Room Tip: My Husband and I like the sunset so the room we had was wonderful. side with room 0639. - one issue...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Sarah I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 24, 2013

Wonderful vacation at the Riu Palace Aruba! We were there Jan. 14-21. An unusually rainy first day but the rest of the week it was blue skies and a sunny 85F. Windy yes, but it keeps you cool as well as the sand and pool deck so you don’t burn your feet walking around.

We were upgraded to a junior suite due to a special anniversary, and it was in building C, the older building. The room had been refurbished and was beautiful with a view of the pool and ocean. Everything worked well; the bed was not hard; water pressure was good. The room felt very luxurious with 2 TVs, 2 French balconies, double sinks, huge walk-in closet.
The second day we were there we got a call from management wanting to know if everything was OK and if we had any problems to let them know. Impressive!

Food in the buffet was very good. We ate 2 dinners there with lots of choices. Breakfast was always good and so was lunch there. We also ate lunch at the beach restaurant and enjoyed that, especially the Caesar salad station where it was made to order.

The wait staff was excellent. We ate in the same place mostly in the main buffet and the ladies who looked after us were very friendly and efficient. They knew just what to bring us and when, and cleared dishes promptly. They told us that they were well paid and enjoyed their jobs, which was good to hear. You don’t often hear that from the staff.

We ate in the specialty restaurants 4 times and enjoyed all meals. The food was always good, and it was fun being waited on with such caring staff. They always asked if everything was OK and served so carefully. To make the reservations was never a problem. They started taking reservations at 9 a.m. and we usually arrived there between 8:30-9:00. Only a few are there at 8:30 and by 9:00 there is a long line. But once they start the line goes fast and everyone usually gets what they want. We spoke to a few people who came down at 10:00 and still got their preferred dinner. So it really is not a problem. If you wait till 11:00 you may be disappointed.

Much has been said about getting a palapa on the beach so I will add my comments. The hotel has about 800 rooms and less that 100 palapas so it stands to reason that if you must have one you have to get to the beach early as they go fast. We are early risers so it was not a problem going down by 7 a.m. to get our place. Most are taken by this time as some people are there by 6:30 to stake their claim. There are palm trees that offer shade as well. The problem that many have mentioned about all the palapas being taken at any hour sadly was true. A situation existed of money changing hands with guests and staff who reserved them all. Once this was brought to the attention of the General Manager, he quickly fired all staff involved, and this is no longer happening. But do get there by 7:00 if you don’t want to be disappointed. (The GM, Richard Velasco, impressed us as being a fine gentleman who is on top of everything and does his best to rectify any problems.)

The pool area has lots of cots that are available most of the time, no rush to get them unless you want to sit in a special place. My only suggestion here is that I feel the umbrellas need upgrading. They didn’t always give you proper shade, and that’s their purpose.

There were few older children there but lots of toddlers and infants. All were a pleasure to watch and were well behaved and quiet.

Entertainment is not great. The staff does put on some good shows and are great dancers, good costumes. But it doesn’t start till 10:00 p.m. Maybe earlier would be better? There is music each night in the bar before that, but I would like to see more, and of more variety.

Hotel location is perfect. You can walk outside the front to an area of shops and restaurants. On the beach there is a sidewalk that runs along all the hotels in the area so you can go on their properties or inside the hotels. We had great after breakfast walks there before hitting the beach.

People complain about missing pool tiles, cups in the pools, etc. I, on the other hand, saw workmen repairing tiles in the early morning. There are garbage disposals everywhere so the flying cups are caused by guests who don’t bother to use them.

Staff everywhere is friendly if you say hello. We had many pleasant conversations with staff cleaning the pool deck or pool water each day. No one is unfriendly if you make the effort. Looking out my window at 6:30 a.m. I could see staff, in the dark, with flashlights, cleaning the pool deck or busy doing other things. The property is very well maintained.

We spoke to many people at the Riu and everyone loved the food and resort and the fact that it is safe to go anywhere on the island. All were planning to return, as are we.

Room Tip: Our room was in building C and overlooked the pool/ocean. It was quiet at night. It was a Junior Sui...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank goldie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2013

My husband and I have traveled to Aruba several times, we usually stay at the Hyatt but wanted to try something new. The Riu was definitely a fun time. There pool is gorgeous and has lively entertainment (music, aerobics) each day. You become friends with the bartenders quickly and they love to socialize which makes you feel right at home! The one complaint my husband had was no sports at the pool ( Water volleyball etc).
We heard some complaints about the rooms but ours was perfect. The bed was enormous larger than a king size if you can even imagine that. The terrace was small but the view made up for it! Make sure you leave the AC on all the time otherwise the condensation will make you slip and slide!
When compared to the other places to eat in Aruba , the food in the Riu is " ok". The best options are the breakfast and lunch buffet. There are 3 speciality restaurants for dinner but you have to get up at 9 am to reserve a seat for either the 6 or 9pm seating. Honestly , I didnt find anything special about them. They are edible but just ok. Room service is 24 hrs however its a bunch of cold sandwiches and fruit. The few times we called , they ran out of 2 of the 5 items on the menu. If you get hungry at nights your better off getting some snacks on the strip and bringing them back to your room.
The entertainment at night is sub par, coming from a New Yorker its hard to be "nice" about it. However its a good place to start for drinks and laughs. After the nightly show , take a stroll down the strip of restaurants and bars or stop at one of the other hotels! Overall the Riu is a nice place to stay if your looking for unlimited drinks and socialization! If your looking for great food go out for dinner!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank MissB237
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vaughan, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2013

We went to the RIU Palace for our honeymoon from Nov.13,to Nov.20 of 2011. It was absolutely amazing ( I know I'm late with my review). The food was amazing at the main dinning room and as well as the specialty restaurant except the Chinese restaurant. The staff were super amazing especially the bartenders at pool, they made the best drinks ever ;) Our room was clean and super spacious. We would definitely go back...

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Mon_Mus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, PA
Level Contributor
20 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2013

Stayed here for a week this past January. I will say that the beach, the size of the rooms and location are the only redeeming qualities about this hotel. The beds are uncomfortable and the sheets feel like sandpaper. Customer service is lacking. There is virtually no hot water if you shower between the hours of 5pm and 7pm daily.

The pool bar is the closest bar to the beach and there is no waitress service on the beach. Which means, if you want to get a drink, you have to walk 100 yards only to receive a small plastic cup with watered down alcohol.

The food is dreadful. Everything is greasy, salty and swimming in a bath of well, grease.

Having stayed at other 4 star 5 star resorts around the world, my advice is to not stay here. Pay the extra money and stay at the Hyatt.

Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
4 Thank universltraveler
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 Aruba

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Aruba
Address: J.E. Irausquin Boulevard 79 | Palm Beach - Palm Beach, Palm - Eagle Beach, Aruba (Formerly Aruba Grand Beach Resort)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Aruba > Palm - Eagle Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Business Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#12 Luxury Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#12 Spa Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#13 Top resorts Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#16 Romantic Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
#18 Family Hotel in Palm - Eagle Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Riu Palace Aruba 4.5*
Number of rooms: 450
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
> * Opened: summer 2007> * Situated in Palm Beach on the island of Aruba> * Two 10-story buildings, one 8-story building> * Located on the beach> * Complimentary sun loungers and parasols on the beach> * 4 km / 2.48 Miles from Oranjestad> * 700 m / 2296.7 Ft. From various shops> * 10 km / 6.21 Miles from the airport> * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Diners ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Aruba Hotel Palm/Eagle Beach
Riu Aruba
Riu Palace Aruba Resort
Hotel Riu Palace Aruba Palm - Eagle Beach

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