I'm sad to read all the bad reviews that were written in November about this resort. We traveled to the Riu with our 2 year old son and stayed there for a week. This was our first stay at the Riu, but our fourth time to the Dominican (3rd time to Puerto Plata). We have been on several cruises before and other Carribean countries. We travelled Sunwings from Toronto (BEST flight ever) and we paid taxes in $600 each CDN. For what we paid this was a great vacation. I wouldn't have wanted to pay more. I emailed the resort a few days before arriving requesting an ocean view ground level room and that's what we got. Check in was a breeze, we were there for a brief few minutes and then directed to our room which was very easy to find and very close to everything. You get access to all the sister resorts but can only have dinner at your own resort.
Room - very clean, our fridge had a couple of beers, couple of cokes, couple of club sodas, large jug of water, we didn't need more than that, and you can call reception for restocking. Our maid did a wonderful job, and left us regularly towels shaped into animals along with flowers on our bed. We rented the safe for $3/day, we didn't mind paying for our peace of mind, but sometimes we left things lying around the room and never had a problem. Reception called us 3rd day in to see if everything is good and wanted to know if we needed anything, my husband just mentioned that it would be nice to have more beer and it was delivered immediately after. All you have to do is ask. Bathroom was basic, basic hair dryer, I never use hotel hair dryers, always bring my own. Water pressure was great, temperature was always nice and hot too. We had a large bad (2 beds pushed together), we didn’t mind, we’re on vacation, we’re not going to stress about things like this.
Beach – beach offered TONS of shade and there were plenty of loungers there, these loungers were washed and scrubbed daily by the staff. It’s a rocky beach, definitely not the nicest we’ve seen but we knew that going in, this isn’t Punta Cana, but the sand was constantly cleaned. We brought our water shoes because we knew it would be rocky. Our 2 year old loved making sand castles on the beach and ran between pool and beach as everything was in close proximity.
Pool – all the action took place around the pool, entertainment staff was excellent, lots of fun and hilarious. Pool itself could use some work but it was kept constantly clean, there was also a small pool for kiddies. It was never crowded around the pool, plenty of beach towels and loungers and mats around. Lots of palpas too. One afternoon they surprised everyone by cooking a seafood paella by the pool, it was delicious! Seafood was so fresh and it smelled divine. Another day they ushered everyone to the beach and had a beach party in the middle of the day and offered everyone fresh coconuts (some with alcohol and some without) and fresh fruits, they played music, our son really enjoyed that.
Restaurants – buffets were fine, food wasn’t amazing but it was plentiful, it does get boring and repetitive after a week, but we sure never went hungry. We ate at the main buffet for breakfast, there were lots of options, we took most of our lunches at the grill bar by the pool, they had the usual fries, burgers, pizza, soups and salads, fruits and icecream. We ate at the buffet for dinner and we tried the Italian and the Steakhouse, again nothing amazing but a nice change from the buffet. Food in Punta Cana was a lot better, but again we were well fed and our son had plenty to choose from and no one got sick.
Grounds – constantly kept clean, there was an off smell in some areas but not enough to bother us.
Spa - I had an hour massage at the spa, it was by the beach and it was very relaxing, $49 for one hour and the lady was quite good and let me nap after it was done!
Evening entertainment – we really enjoyed it, 8pm they had a mini disco for the kiddies, our son loved that, following that they put on various shows, we watched most of them and enjoyed all the ones we watched, far better than any of the other resorts we’ve been to. Staff was funny and interactive.
Flights – We flew with Sunwing and they were AMAZING. I don’t think I’ve had that good of a flight in a very long time, we were given free champagne to kick start our vacation, the staff were SO friendly and went out of their way to ensure everyone’s comfort, we were also given a hot meal both ways along with snack and a free glass of wine. Kids were given a baggie with some activities to occupy them, they gave free headsets and offered everyone a movie. No complaints at all about the flight.
All in all it was a very relaxing vacation, we had beautiful weather and our little family had a fabulous time.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The ClubHotel Riu Merengue (All Inclusive 24h) is located in Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic, and is surrounded by impressive views of the mountains and a lush, natural environment. This is the perfect setting for unforgettable holidays. The ClubHotel offers all facilities you could need for relaxing holidays away from the hustle and bustle of the city. You’ll find a fresh water swimming pool, a solarium terrace, a gym and the Renova Spa wellness centre with a range of different treatments and massages as well as a sauna. In the Dominican Republic you can find a wide range of international cuisine, but if you want to make the most of your time in this marvellous destination by sampling Dominican cuisine, delicious in both taste and colour, you can enjoy a wide variety of flavours and aromas, as Dominican dishes mainly consist of fruit and vegetables. In the buffet restaurant or themed restaurant you’ll find an endless range of dishes and recipes prepared by our chefs every day. The hotel shares its facilities with the hotel complexes of the ClubHotel Riu Bachata. You’ll enjoy access to the entertainment programme and activities thanks to the acclaimed All Inclusive system. Whether you’re travelling as a family, couple or with friends, you’ll find a wide variety of activities to keep you entertained all day long.. There are areas for enjoying tennis, table tennis, windsurfing, sailing, kayaking, bodyboarding, snorkelling, golf, volleyball, swimming and much more. Your children can also enjoy crafts, activities and dancing together with other kids in the RiuLand programme. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Clubhotel Riu Merengue Hotel
- Club Hotel Riu Merengue
- Clubhotel Riu Merengue Puerto Plata
- Riu Merengue Dominican Republic
- Riu Merengue Puerto Plata
- Rui Merengue