We stayed at RIU May 12-18 2013. We had an ocean view suite (room 536 at the end of the building) in building B. The room was amazing. The view was incredible. There is a king size bed (it was pretty firm but I like it that way), jacuzzi tub, dual sinks, standalone shower, sitting area with a flat screen, bar (bacardi, johnny walker, smirnoff, and a brandy) and mini-fridge. The balcony is quite large compared to the other rooms and had a great view. I read a lot of reviews on this site and was somewhat concerned by some of the negative comments. That turned out to be for nothing because the hotel was fantastic. I will definitely go back. The staff was very friendly throughout our stay and easily met all of our expectations.
Checking in was easy. We took a cab from the airport for $28 and there was no wait to check-in. They have you eat at the Don Nicholas buffet the first night. Any other night you can choose from any of the sit down restaurants or the buffet. You have to make reservations for the restaurants the morning of and choose between a 6:30 or 9:00 dining time. They start taking reservations at 8am. If you go at that time you'll have to wait in line. I would go around 10am because there was no line and I didn't have trouble making a reservation for 6:30. All the food was very good at the restaurants and buffet. I would have been happy at the buffet every night. There is a very large selection and they do different themes every night.
The pool is great. The swim up bar is pretty cool. The drinks are a little weak but I didn't want to get trashed at 10am and wanted to stay hydrated because the sun is very strong. People get up at the crack of dawn to reserve chairs with towels. I wasn't about to get up that early on vacation. My wife and I never had a problem finding two chairs together when we went down around 9-10am. Towels can be hard to come by later in the day because some people are constantly getting new ones. I highly recommend boca towel clips. The wind is constant here and will blow the towel away.
The beach is paradise. The wind blows a lot and sometimes pelts you with sand. That can be a little annoying but I'd take that over bugs any day. It also makes it feel cooler and much more comfortable. There are some huts for shade but they get taken very early in the morning. I was happy in the sun anyway. Make sure to bring plenty of sun screen because it is much more expensive than at home. The water is crystal clear and the bottom is almost completely sand. It is very warm too. The sand doesn't get hot so you can walk around barefoot comfortably.
There are a number of huts set up where the locals sell water sports, chairs, umbrellas, etc. By De Palm pier, next to RIU, there is a hut where we rented jet skis. It was a blast and they take you to an area down the beach where it is pretty quite so you don't have to worry about other boats. I recommend the Palm Pleasure sunset cruise. It runs every night and you can make reservations in the hotel lobby. We also did the off-road safari through De Palm tours. You drive a two seat utv (yamaha rhino) through the north side of the island. It was great. Fabio was an awesome guide, he was very funny and interesting.
I highly recommend RIU and I can't wait to go back.
- 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, 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