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ClubHotel Riu Bambu
Ranked #75 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Reviewed January 4, 2013

My boyfriend and I just got back from our stay at the Riu Bambu ( December 23rd-30th) and we had an amazing time.
We cannot beleive some of the reviews people have written. My room was very clean and did not see one bug(someone complained about cockroaches).
We were in room 2301 and I think we were really lucky. The resort it very big but we were a minute walk to the bar and reception area and we were a 1 minute walk the other way to the beach and pool. We had the perfect location!
The bad reviews about the staff, you must have stayed at a different resort, because they were all amazing at the Bambu!! They went above and beyond for us, they talked to us and created freindships with us.They knew our preferred drinks when they saw us coming, always greeted us with a handshake, lit my boyfriends cigarettes for him. I have not one bad thing to say about any of them.
The review mentioned below said they had no shuttle bus? I cannot see how that was possible, every hotel had one, maybe you didn't know where you were going? They even got my luggage for me and brought me to my bus( for a tip of course, but deserved)
The food was good, no complaints, nothing special, but neither is any of the food in the Ottawa restaurants. The beach was beautiful, we had amazing weather the entire time.
We did the Buggie excursion and it was fun, but dirty! The excursion staff were very helpful and really took care of you.
I would most definitely return to this resort. I was weary when reading the reviews before I left and I spoke to other guests about the bad reviews aswell and they too, just do not understand peoples complaints. The othter guests and I have concluded that the complaints have come from people that you just cannot make happy and will complain about EVERYTHING and anything. Don't get a great deal on a resort and expect to be treated like the queen. You are in a third world country! Pay the big bucks somewhere else and maybe you'll be happier, doubtful, but maybe
FYI: if you are young and want to party hard, this is not that kind of resort. People do drink at the bar until it closes at midnight, but for the most part, as soon as the shows are over at 11pm, it gets pretty quiet. There is a disco 2 resorts over you can go to, which is NOT worth going to. If we wanted to continue hanging out with the friends we made, we went to the sports bar and hung out. The weather was so great, that I personally wanted to get to bed early enough so that I could get up early and get as much beach time as possible.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank Lindsay O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,173 - 2,179 of 5,852 reviews

Reviewed January 4, 2013

hotel is fully inclusive,, drink optics are in all rooms with fridge for the juice and water, large twin kingsize beds with plenty of room space,, the hotel has everything and more,, i have been too alot of resorts and this of yet the best,, plenty of pool entertainment, staff are really helpful and the food is of very good quality, own private beach with plenty of sun loungers also,, i cant not fault the staff or the hotel in any way what so ever and do hope to return this year,, the down fall is the market stall holders do try to con you so be aware

Room Tip: the hotel is massive and the rooms are quiet on the bottom of the resort
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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5  Thank smiler-7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2013

Upon arriving at the Punta Cana airport the baggage handlers jump on you like a fat man on a smartie. We arrived at the hotel while it was raining. There was no shuttle to the hotel even though we were told there would be one. Once we settled in the room we went to the lobby. The rain had gotten onto the tiles and my wife slipped on thr water and fell hard to the floor. She broke he ankle in the fall. The hotel managed to get a ratty old wheelchair for her. Nobody took responsibility for what happened and only after she fell did they put out the slippery floor sign. the manager tried his best but I expected more from him. The staff works like dogs. 14 hour days!!! Luis Miguel at the bar was amazing. The food was ok at best. The buffet is bland. The steak house has no idea how to cook a steak. Asked for med/well got it blood rare. Expected much more from a Rio hotel. Will not be back. Sorry we waisted our money.

Room Tip: Give the reservation fellow for the restaurant bookings a good tip and you will not have to line up...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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5  Thank rick m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2013

We have stayed at many resorts in the Caribbean - most of them 5 stars. We booked the RIU in December 12, at the last minute, on the basis of it being a 5-star.

While the beach was lovely, the food and drinks were low quality and there was no variety at all.
For example - breakfast only included bacon on one day out of seven and included many wierd dishes that appeared to be leftovers. The house wine was totally unpalatable and had a strange chemical taste - I tried red and white wines twice - all were bad. I really wanted a good wine to have at the a la cartes, but there was no wine list. The a la cartes provided a slightly higher quality of food - but not like what you would find at other 5-stars. Overall, this doesn't make or break a vacation, I go there for the sun and the beach, but you have food expectations for a 5-star that this resort does not deliver.

I also have to say that the customer service was unimpressive. The staff did not seem to care about their work. They did not come to take drink orders at the lounges at night - you had to go to the bar to order. The waitresses cleared the tables but didn't take drink orders. In the buffet, the waiters were regularly seen drinking glasses of beer surreptitiously and were a bit surly (maybe it was the beer).

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Cathy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2013

Just arrived home from 6 days at this resort. We had no idea what to expect after reading all the reviews, but were impressed with the resort. We had a deluxe room 3700 block, a bit of a walk, but well worth it. Rooms was spotless each & every day, bed was great & lots of closet room. Fresh towels everyday.

The food is all nicely presented & there was always something to eat. It's not as impressive as some places we've been, but certainly nothing to complain about. Staff was always freindly & helpful. Bartenders remembered what we were drinking.

The beach is why we went & it was all worth it. We have never seen such beautiful beaches. The sand is so fine. We spent a lot of time walking the beach & in the water.

The one thing fellow travellers should know is that there is no need to exchange money into DR pesos. Just take US dollars. There is a $10 tax on the way in & $20 on the way out & the only money they would take on the way in was US, good thing we had some $1 along for tipping. We did manage to use up our Peso's but it was a challenge. Even the stores in the hotel wanted US dollars. Good thing our Sun Wing rep helped us out changing some Can. to US so that we had tip money. They never ask or expect a tip, but are most thankful when one is given. The staff all work very hard to make sure everyone is happy.

It is very hard to make a reservation. I got down to the Lobby at 7am one morning & could only get a reservation in the Steak House at 8:30. After that we never bothered. When we are on holidays I don't want to have to get up at the crack of dawn to make a dinner reservation. The buffet was just fine & we went when we wanted.

Overall we were very satisfied with our holiday & would recommend it. Would definately go back. Weather was beautiful & the sand & water exquisite.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank ryanair5749
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2013

We stayed at the Riu Bambu dec. 22nd through the 29th. Ramon was the clerk at the desk when we arrived. He gave an excellent service. Our rooms (1 for us and 1 for the kids) were ready although we had requested a king size bed which was not available, not a big deal...the rooms were very nice, mini bar and a selection of 4 different alcohol (dispenser with full size bottles)were available and resupplied daily.

The beach was excellent and no problems finding long chairs. The bars were ok but the drinks were average (not what you'd expect from a 5 stars hotel)...the beach towel attendant (the older one, they were two) was anything but pleasant, giving you a hard time when you wanted to replace a wet towel and even being impolite with my wife. He needs training on customer service.

Food, what to say about food...again not what you would expect from a 5 stars, even the xmas eve's dinner was at most, ordinary... A la carte restaurants, Chilly's, the Mexican restaurant was excellent as for the other ones, who knows it was impossible to get a reservation(unless you got up at 6 from what we heard)...

We have travelled many times, probably over 30 times in the Caribeans, ranging from 3 stars in Cuba to 5 stars in Mexico, Dominican Republic, St-Marteen, Costa Rica etc. this hotel doesn't make the cut, it is probably one of the last one if you compare price vs quality.

Room Tip: Try to get a room away from the road, more quiet!
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Norm394
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 30, 2012

Just got home from a nice vacation at Riu Bambu. The grounds were very well kept, beautiful pools and bars. Entertainment was okay, shows could have been a little better compared to other vacation resorts I've been to. My only main concern was the restaurant reservation policy. In order to eat dinner in one of the four specialty restaurants, they require you to wait in line in the lobby between 7am and 10am to ensure a reservation. All 4 mornings we got in line(which was no later than 8:30am), the reservations were already full which was very disappointing. Overall, we had a very nice time, and would recommend this hotel, just be prepared to not eat a very wide variety for meals.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Theresababay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Bambu

Address: | Playa Arena Gorda, Punta Cana 23000, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#64 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#69 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#69 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $157 - $392 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Bambu 3.5*
Number of rooms: 740
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located in Punta Cana * Situated on Arena Gorda Beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Palace Macao, Riu Taino and Riu Naiboa hotels * Main building and 1-story bungalow complex * Surrounded by 46,000 m2 / 50,300 sq. Yards of palm groves, adjacent to the beach * 50 km / 31 miles from Higley * 600 m / 1,980 ft. From Caribbean Street * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Intl. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Bambu Punta Cana
Riu Bambu Dominican Republic

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