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“5 apple sq deal”

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ClubHotel Riu Bambu
Ranked #77 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Felicity, Ohio
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“5 apple sq deal”
Reviewed March 24, 2014

we didn't know where we was staying until we arrived at the airport we could have booked this resort for about the same money it is a nice place the workers is very nice the food is good , the only complaint I would have for a 5 star resort is the beds there 2 full size pushed together and feel like box springs not plush at all we would go back but try to upgrade the room. we just returned home 3/23/14

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank Jerry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Brandon, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2014

We have been back home for 2 wks after our stay at the Riu Bambu and wanted to share our thoughts. As we were at the Riu, my friend was reading reviews that said the food was awful, as I was snacking on caviar, brie cheese on crackers, and wondering which of the six ice cream selections I would have for desert! Does anyone see the irony here? There is absolutely nothing wrong with the food unless you have a craving for kraft dinner (which they don't have) everything else is available. The beach is A1, the service was wonderful, and housekeeping was perfect. No shortage of water in the room, and fridge was kept up to date at all times. The first time I tried to write this review I ran out of space so please feel free to e-mail me with any questions. Do not, I repeat, do not let the naysayers keep you from this resort! It was wonderful!The only complaint we had is that we had to come home! Scott and Maureen

Room Tip: The front desk is willing to help you upgrade if available but they are further from the pool. As t...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank scottydog1951
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2014

We stayed at this hotel in March 2014. Lovely , friendly atmosphere, excellent location. Of all the hotels in RIU group, this one is the best, with best facilities, many pools, kids pool, great entertainment, great food, with a wide variety of choices.
We went there with Thomson, we were treated very good, thank you Sonny and Mr Pinky!!!
If you go on a trip we recommend Island Saona, fabulous, especially if you go with Thomson, you are treated like a king!!
Overall, great experience for good money!!!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank mioara c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
22 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed March 23, 2014

To begin, just be aware to bring extra $ with you because you'll have to pay $10US upon arrival and $20US leaving Punta Cana tax. We never found the need to use pesos so for anyone who is wondering, just stick with US dollars.

VALUE:
I expected this resort to be at the lower end given the price I paid. You really do pay for what you get. But did I really need to pay another couple of hundreds just to have a prettier lobby like the other Riu Palaces around us? No. Everyone shares the exact same gorgeous beach which really is the #1 thing everyone looks for about Punta Cana and this side of the coast specifically. I find a lot of people's reviews are way out of hand, expecting unrealistic results for the amount they paid.

BEACH/POOL:
Yes, just like the pictures on the promotional magazines. The beach really is that beautiful. Soft white sand, warm and calm water (we went in the middle of crazy March break). I did find the massive amount of seaweeds to be kind of annoying when you're initially getting into the water. Something I hope the resort would deal with. Personally found the setup of Riu Bambu's beach better than the other Riu's surrounding us. The distance between water, beach and resort was much shorter... and also better shading (shorter coconut trees) if you need. We never had a problem finding an empty beach chair, perhaps because of the lower number of guests in this particular resort? There was one bigger pool in the middle of the resort which we didn't use simply because of the March break youngsters who basically took over. If you're into that kind of partying, you're good. There's another small pool and a kid's section as well if you have a family. Often there will be different people selling you things like cigars, segway tours or coconuts for $3 each. Coconut tasted alright, not the best so do it at your own discretion. The coastal beach is huge, you can definitely walk to other resorts besides the Riu's. I do recommend it, it's a nice stroll and the view is awesome.

ROOM/HOUSING:
The Bambu set up is like units of 2 story houses. Exterior is this ugly pink which I hope they will repaint one near day. We were in the 800s so it was a bit of a walk but I like it. I know some people just want everything to be close together but then they'll be complaining about small the resort is. I like the size of Bambu, not too big, not too small, lots of greenery. Our room was clean, by no means absolute perfect but it did its job. I was prepared so I brought all my toiletries with me. They only provide shampoo in a dispenser and bar hand soap, so if you need more than that, make sure to bring your own. We had two mattresses put together so it became "king size" but of course it's annoying when you end up sleeping in the gap. Liquor dispenser and fridge always provided at all Riu's I go to. If you're afraid of the heat, not to worry, the AC is STRONG. We actually needed the extra blanket at night it was that cold. My biggest problem was the electric sockets. It has a this bulky protector on it so sometimes you can't use certain chargers 'cause it gets in the way. Every so often they restock your water/liquor supply but it's a separate guy that does it not the cleaning lady (if you want to tip accordingly). You can always ask for bottles of water at the front desk (and yes you DO NOT drink the tap water in D.R.) We could hear only loud guests sometimes if they're in the hallway (middle of March break, imagine that) but most of the time, it was pretty quiet in the room. There is no free wifi in the room but you can certainly pay for (10US dollar per day if I remember correctly).

FOOD:
Typical resort food. Buffet style, I didn't expect the most amazing quality. Yes you can call it average. It was difficult to eat "clean" if you're at these kinds of resorts but I figured it was my vacation so I indulged a bit on sweets. Stay away from raw foods, just to be safe. I tried a bite of beef carpaccio, ONE bite, and the next day I had the D, not pretty (yeah bring imodium folks). Pineapple was always available. Lots of things are fried in oil. There are a couple of a la carte restaurants. We only liked one, which was the steakhouse because you actually get a decent piece of steak (only medium or well done though). Mexican was meh, Italian was meh, didn't even bother with Asian I know I will hate it. And yes, you will get your wine from a tap, the red was actually tolerable haha. We're not big drinkers, had a decent mojito but general everything is very sugary which I'm not a fan of. My partner actually said the watered down beer was the most tolerable among all the drinks. There's something called mamajuana which is a D.R. concoction rumoured to have effect like viagara or an aphrodisiac? I tried a little bit, smelled like grape drink, tasted pungent.

SERVICE/FACILITIES:
In general, the service was a bit casual. Don't wait around, just direct and ask for help and they will. They're not necessary up front and friendly until you approach them, at least that was our experience. They had the typical resort daily activities you can do from morning to late evening. Water type activities like kayaking you do have to sign up for a time slot. I believe scuba diving lessons are offered but not free. There is a massage place called Eternal Spa next door at Palace Punta Cana, all different types of massages but often on the beach, you'll encounter staff asking if you want one.

This resort doesn't have its own gym but as a Riu guest, you can use the other facilities in the other Riu's around. The closest gym was at the Riu Palace Punta Cana and it's only steps away from Bambu, not far. Equipments are OLD. If you're looking to do free weights, the heaviest was only 15lbs. 5 treadmills, 5 ellipticals, and one cable machine and some dirty mats.

There is a maximum of 90 minute free wifi in the lobby. I never use it at night because every single person will be there (before or after dinner) and trust me, you will never log in. Use the internet during the day while everyone's on the beach or at the pool, it's much better.

There is the Caribbean strip which is a tiny streets of vendors selling Punta Cana merchandise and paintings, if you're into that, perfect. Just don't be surprised if you'll be paying for $30 sunscreen.

We flew with Sunwing/Signature vacation, there was always a representative there to help us if we needed to ask about flight information or excursions. Speaking of, D.R. isn't known for too many excursions. But we did the sting ray bay/snorkel with sharks/party on a pirate ship (was kinda entertaining if you're willing to get into the dancing), about $100 for person and also the ocean spa "Dr. Fish" about $150 per person, which we found quite relaxing to do in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. And the staff at these excursions are always very friendly.

LGBT:
Generally we kept to ourselves so we didn't run into any problems. There were a couple of looks here and there from the staff and guests... u know the same two guys hanging around together. It did seem like we were the token gay couple there. D.R. is primarily Catholic I believe. In case anyone is wondering.

Overall it was a great trip. Everything went very smoothly which is always nice. It was my partner's first tropical vacation and he said he will definitely go back. The beautiful beach and clear blue sky are definitely worth it. We had a full week of hot weather but never too humid and never overly hot temperature, always about 29degree celsius, it was kind of perfect.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank baritonekeith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Green Bay
Level Contributor
61 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 175 helpful votes
Reviewed March 23, 2014

Our group of 10 arrived at the Riu Bambu on the 9th of March 2014. We were greeted with a non-alcoholic fruity drink and handed check-in envelopes with info map,towel cards and room keys. Our Apple vacations Rep. Seigfreid took our group picture then off to our rooms we went.
This resort has the older violet painted buildings like in Negril Jamaica. Nice but a little outdated.
Rooms were nice and clean but had a tub shower. Some rooms had recessed outlets so if you have a big end on your plug in device, it would not fit. You can however go to the front desk and get a adapter for a $1.00 U.S. refundable deposit upon return of plug.
Overall this resort is very nice for the budget minded traveler.
Our group would of had no problem staying here but because of the 500 spring breakers overtaking the swim-up bar and pool area, we were offered the chance to switch to the Riu Palace Bavaro. By the way this is the newest hotel in the Riu chain in Punta Cana. How could you say no to that! The next day we made the switch. See the Riu Palace Bavaro for my next review.
Note: Our group did not mind the spring breakers. They were entertaining to say the lest.
The problem was they would swarm the bars and pool so we would not of gotten to enjoy what all the Riu Bambu had to offer.
The food was good and the staff very helpful.
If my review was helpful & you like any of my pics, a helpful vote or thumbs up would be much appreciated. I give you a straight up review with no sugarcoating.
Enjoy your vacation, I did!!

Gerry

Room Tip: If you do not like to walk a long way, ask for a room closer to the beach.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank bikerbuddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Middlewich
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed March 23, 2014 via mobile

We arrived on 26th February for a 3 week stay after being recommended by people who have visited in the past. When booking we were told by thomson travel shop to avoid Mexico because of the spring break. Therefore we booked Dominican Republic, first 5 days were fine until the hotel was invaded by 400/500 students, we had 3 nights with interrupted sleep, could not go in the pool and the bars were surrounded by students.
The beach bar was removed after 3 days due to the abuse of not only the students but staff filling them with booze. The pool barbecue was removed for the same reason. Changing rooms on the beach were used as a public toilet and language all day and night was disgusting.
Fortunately after complaining to our thomson reps we were moved to the riu palace for our last 8 nights. We would advise anyone not to stay in march for this reason and unfortunately this hotel is certainly not 4 or 5 star. Cannot fault our thomson reps sonny and pinky but unfortunately we think the hotel are at fault.


Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Susan G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brandon,manitoba
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 22, 2014

we always have a great trip where ever we go, we upgraded to a better room upon arrival. we where in the 5000 building. The rooms where very very nice, but so far away from pools and the beach. The food, not the best. The Asian was our favorite. This is our fourth time to PC and i found the staff unfriendly, except the hard working girl (maria) in the morning. The bar tender at the swim up bar are fabulous,,just tip and you will be looked after. I found the games around the pool to be low grade,and sometimes inappropriate. wanted to go to the disco, but it was 5 bucks a drink, hmmm at an all inclusive resort (scratches head). The beach was beautiful and very clean. love PC just won't go back to this resort, moving on lol.

Room Tip: stay in the 5000 if you can!
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cindyloohoo33
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

Property: 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:
#66 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#69 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#70 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
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 Int€™l. 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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