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“Riu Bachata”

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ClubHotel Riu Bachata
Ranked #11 of 39 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Manchester
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Riu Bachata”
Reviewed July 1, 2013

What First Choice and Thomsons omit to tell you is that the Riu Hotel chain is selling cheap deals to the locals as the Riu is at low capacity. No special weekends, no weddings, no school holidays just loads and loads of locals enjoying all the facilities and this hotel turns into very far from all inclusive luxury resort and simply a busy Butlins in Blackpool in high season.

It is the fight of the fittest in the dinning room where the locals first, second, third cousin and all ten kids will be served before you and even some are let in by the waiters who are not even guests.

Riu is making money selling cheap three day breaks to the locals who fill the rooms to capacity beware if your sold an exclusive, luxurious, holiday by first choice this you will not get!!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
8 Thank John_HManchester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Florida
Level Contributor
32 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 192 helpful votes
Reviewed June 27, 2013

Here’s the long, detailed review I promised. About us. We are an active early 40’s couple with no kids. This was our 8th Riu. We got a super good deal so we didn’t have super high expectations and we know what to expect with RIUs. We like their consistency. We have been to Iberostars and Club Med and find the food to be better at those chains. But, we like RIU’s drinks better and are not picky eaters. We find the extra price at other chains isn’t worth it.
Airport: Easy… We were lucky enough to come from Florida so we only had an hour and a half flight. Sorry to all my new friends from England . We had our $10 per person ready. We exchanged money at the airport which was a big mistake. First, you don’t need to. Everywhere took dollars. Second, the exchange rate was terrible compared to the hotel. My advice..if you’re from the U.S. just keep your dollars. It’s easier figure out how much you’re paying. I think we ended up losing about $20 in the bad exchange rate and confusion with how much the Pesos were really worth. I set up a pick up with Elias and he was great. Had a sign with my name and gave us a little tour of the Malecon before we got to the resort.
Check In: Easy…our room and keys were ready right away. We asked for an upper floor and were helped to building 6 by the water. The air conditioning didn’t work so we moved to building 4 by the pool the next day. Not an issue for us. But, I’ve heard that happening to many guests, so it appears the resort needs to do some routine maintenance to keep things running. I had emailed saying it was our wedding anniversary, so moments after we arrived a fruit plate with a note was delivered wishing us a Happy Anniversary.
Room: Basic…RIUs all have hard beds. But, I bring my own pillow and we are usually so tired it doesn’t matter. There isn’t much of a covering on the bed. The room never got super cold so I didn’t need one. But I usually sleep with tons of blankets at home. The TV only had about 4 out of 80 channels in English so it took forever to search for a channel. We met a couple that had a laptop and bought the wifi ($10 a day) so they could watch streaming Netflix. But, we weren’t there to watch tv..so no biggie.
Resort: This is no where near 5 star. I think people are looking at the stars on this forum for the overall experience which can be a 5 star trip. But, this is no Ritz. It’s an affordable place in a beautiful location. You can get a great workout walking from Bachata to Merengue. There are some fun bars to stop and get drinks, too. Don’t forget to go up to the gazebo. The landscape is something like I’ve never seen. I loved that mountains were in the background of the tropical terrain. Most of the building are open to the outside. And thanks to the wind at night…it stayed cool.
Pool: Loved it! We are pool people. We love the swim up pool bar and pool volleyball. There are also pool games like kayak races and beer drinking contest every afternoon as well as water aerobics and water polo. The pool is basically 2 semi circles. It’s nice because adults can hang by the pool bar and there is another “play” pool.
Beach: Really pretty with a lot of shade from the trees. The waves are pretty strong and it gets really windy in the afternoon. If you go off to the side...the water is super calm if you walk to the left of the gazebo. The beach is wider if you walk to the right toward the Merengue resort.
Gym: Needs help and a good paint job. But, we got in two workouts during our 7 nights. There are a couple treadmills, some free weights, a fitball, and some machines.
Food: Breakfast is definitely the best meal of the day. For some reason the pancakes tasted weird. But, I loved the fresh crepes and French toast. They also make fresh fruit smoothies every morning. Usually RIU’s have tremendous buffets. But, because this was the slow season…some stations weren’t open. The lunch beach restaurant wasn’t open at all. There wasn’t even lettuce on the salad bar the first 2 nights to make a salad. This is the only time we were disappointed. Even the ice cream cooler was only half full. I don’t get it. Ice cream doesn’t go bad. Usually Riu’s have 6 options every night. But, it was limited and half the time PRUNE was a flavor…yes PRUNE-yuck. Be careful..it looks like chocolate. But, on day 3 the food got better. I understand the manager was gone for part of that week and I’m wondering if that’s why it was bare bones. Still, we did not starve. The fish was fabulous. RIU’s desserts always look really good, but only taste ok. The cheesecake is good, though. Again…the ice cream is the best dessert.
Ala Cartes: We’ve learned the RIU buffets usually have a better selection and we don’t like being on a schedule so we stopped going to them. But, we met a couple who wanted to go so we went to the “steak house”. Growing up in the Midwest (cattle country)I know better than to order a steak in a foreign country, but I did anyway. Needless to say I didn’t eat much that night and that was fine. I needed a night off from high calories. My husband got the chicken and that was really good. We didn’t try the Italian. Again…the buffet usually had enough selection for us. The reservation system was easy. You just tell them when you go for breakfast. The only people who would have a problem would be late risers.
Staff: Amazing and fun. They work really hard, so treat them nicely and tip them. Big Manny and Manuel were great at the pool bar.
Entertainment: The best shows are audience participation. The Rock Show was pretty bad. The lip syncers didn’t even know the words Don’t forget you can walk down to Merengue and check out their nightly shows. We stumbled onto karoke so that was fun.
Resort Shops: There is a Pharmacy and shops in between the two resorts. Bring all your own medicine and sunscreen. It’s expensive there. We also liked the shops on the other side of Bachata on the Bay with the calm water. You can get a 30 minute massage for $15. The people are not pushy, but they will invite you into their shops.
Puerto Plata: Not what I expected. It was kind of spread out. We got a private tour through a taxi and a guy from the resort. We didn’t really need the guy. But, he walked us through the Haitian market and took us to La Sirena (walmart). That’s where you should buy your coffee, vanilla, and rum. I wouldn’t take a tour. I would just hire a taxi to take you to some shops and then to the cable car. We did that in 2 days and that was a waste. The cable car is only $14 per person…so I would do it on a clear day. It was neat to see.
27 Waterfalls: Fabulous. People on the forum warned us about this, but it was one of the best things we’ve ever done. I would not recommend for kids or older folks because there are some slippery spots. But, we had a blast. We did all 27 which I recommend. But, it’s a 2 ½ hour trek and about 45 minutes is hiking up hill. You should be in fairly good shape. From people I talked to…the difference with the half tour is that you start with the big jump. I liked the fact that was toward the end for us. By then I had gotten up enough nerve from jumping on several others before it. But, it’s intense…about 25 feet high.
Sosua Beach: Another must do. We took a cab for $60 roundtrip. The cab driver will wait for you. It’s about 40 minutes from the resort. This is where to go if you want to see beautiful water, snorkel, shop for souvenirs, and eat authentic food on the cheap. There are more than 200 stands/shacks that line the beach. We got some great food for about 5 bucks. We have our own snorkel gear so we just walked right into the water and suddenly we were swimming over a reef with tons of colorful fish. Someone said to take a banana and that was a great idea. The fish went crazy.
Locals-We got lucky...the weekend we were there not very many showed up. But, I understand it was a mad house the weekend before. We had decided to just people watch anyway. No worries.
MY TIPS: Try to make friends at the resort to share cabs off property. We did this for the cable car and waterfalls. Plus it’s a great way to make new friends. The cab fare is a rip off. But, part of that is because of the high price of gas.
Don’t forget the plug adapter. The plugins are set in so plugs like blow dryers don’t work. I bought a cheap one from walmart that had 3 different plug holes. That made the bathroom plug more useful, too.
Bring a lanyard. The keys are old school and it’s easier to keep track of them while your swimming when they’re hanging from your neck.
Bring lots of singles- -Don’t change US Dollars.-Have fun.
Overall we had a great time. We met a lot of great people. It was like camp for adults. The RIU Palaces in Mexico are much nicer. But, if you’re looking for a more tropical setting and are not a picky eater, this place is a great economical choice. Feel free to message me for more questions.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank newschick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mississauga, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 26, 2013 via mobile

Over the last 10 years I have been to Dominican 17 times. This was my first time to Puerto Plata and I can't even compare it to Punta Cana. I guess it depends what you want but for having been to many resorts over the years, I would never return to this one.

The beach is rocky and very rough as there is a constant wind on this side of the island.

Between June and Aug this resort opens itself up to local Dominicans for their summer holiday. From Friday to Monday the resort was swarmed with Dominicans! We couldn't even get into the buffet to eat and the pool area was just the same! I don't have a problem with the locals being there, just seemed very unorganized as parts of the resort were closed due to off-season so it made for very crowded areas. We made an effort to leave the resort just to get away from the crowd.

The food was typical buffet style food. No complaints.

The rooms were basic, nothing fancy except the alcohol dispenser...never had that before.

Anyway, I could go on about the resort and all the things I didn't like because for the most part there wasn't much good. I will say for what I paid; $567 each taxes in (CDN) can't complain. You get what u pay for I guess! Lesson learned.


  • Stayed June 2013
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Melissa E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kings lynn Norfolk Uk
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed June 26, 2013

Stayed here for 2 weeks in June had read reviews before we went but though locals cant be that bad believe me they are. When we arrived rep advised us to book trips for weekends as it can be very noisy and busy. Hotel and staff work hard to make your holiday good but the weekends are terrible. The locals have no manners and they treat the staff terrible. The staff are always smiling and polite but the locals have no respect for them, they leave rubbish any where expecting the staff to clear up after them. When the staff speak to the locals the just ignore them and carrying on doing what they want. Meals times were disgusting they push in and let the children run riot in the restaurant at times it was like feeding time at the zoo. during the week the hotel was 4 star but at the weekend it was 1 star. I was surprised first choice letting the hotel be run this was. I also think that Rui Group and first choice need to look into all the complaints about how the locals treat this hotel. Dominican people that we met outside the hotel were very friendly and pleasant to spend time with.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Janebalc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed June 24, 2013

We booked through Thomson because we perceived it to be well priced and suitable for our requirements. The resort is very clean but looking tired, indeed some of the linen has seen better days. On the site are 2 other Riu hotels which allow you to access each others facilities but not evening meals. The food was reasonable although the meat tended to be on the well done to naff side of culinary skill. The staff are incredibly helpful, friendly and hard working.
Points to consider: the weekends are over run by the locals who treat your property as communal, so if you leave you towel on the beach don't be surprised to find that a stranger has utilised it while you were away. The room bathroom does not have hand soap to pack your own. You could be in any RIU in any country nothing to hint at the culture or uniqueness of a beautiful place. I would however say that for the money we paid it was reasonable but that it didn't match the product description.

Room Tip: Ask for a quiet room or you will find yourself next door to the stage.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Lizzibeastie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abergavenny, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
51 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed June 24, 2013

Stayed in the merengue but spent time in the bachata. Could have breakfast and lunch and use facilities. Very much the rich relative of merengue. Food, facilities, beach all similar to other riu hotels. Spoke to people who stayed there and they said that down points were al a carte menus. Food is foreigh but plenty of choice,even for fusspot like myself . All three hotels next to fabulous beach and the vista is fantastic.

Room Tip: all rooms are in blocks of 4 on two floors,not really a lot of difference in either
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank allansussex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed June 24, 2013 via mobile

Arrieved at our hotel after a long delayed flight although there was a full coach of guests for the hotel the check in process was do well organised we were in our room with our cases delivered within 5 minutes. the hotel was exactly as it says on the Thomson website. i have stayed at many all inclusives over the years and have always found by day three the food becomes repetitive however not at the Bachata they had theme nights every other evening with a choice of menus the staff in the restaurant were so happy friendly nothing was too much trouble. I loved this hotel and will be booking a return trip before too long.

  • Stayed June 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Sheila S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Bachata

Property: ClubHotel Riu Bachata
Address: Bahia de Maimon, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Puerto Plata
#5 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#8 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Bachata 3.5*
Number of rooms: 610
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on the beach in Maimon Bay * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Inside the Riu Resort, along with ClubHotels Riu Merengue and Riu Mambo * Main building plus 1 and 2-story bungalows * Surrounded by 50,000 m2 of tropical gardens * 9 km / 5.5 miles from Puerto Plata * 25 m / 81 ft. from Caribbean Street * 25 km / 15.5 miles from Puerto Plata Intl. Airport * 500 m / 1650 ft. from a bus stop * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Diners ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Bachata Puerto Plata
Clubhotel Riu Bachata Hotel
Clubhotel Riu Bachata Puerto Plata
Riu Bachata Dominican Republic
Riu Puerto Plata
Bachata Riu
Club Hotel Riu Bachata

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