We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Beautiful location”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 9 more sites!
Hotel Riu Palace Macao
Ranked #39 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Thornton-Le-Dale, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
134 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Beautiful location”
Reviewed May 7, 2013

This is our first time in the Dominican Republic and we were very lucky with the hotel, it was on a beautiful beach. This All Inclusive holiday was also a first for us as such as we are avid cruisers. On arrival we discovered we had been upgraded and had a lovely swimming pool and sea view on the 2nd floor so very happy with the room plus it was quite big and had a large walk in shower in the good sized bathroom. It has recently been refurbished and so was spotlessly clean. The food was very good, huge amount of choice at every meal, with some food cooked to choice and other chosen from the buffet. There were 4 speciality restaurants at no extra cost and we visited 2 the steak house and the Krystal restaurant and we had very good meals in both. However, I did enjoy the main restaurant as there was just so much to choose from for every taste, burger and fries for those who want that sort of food to sushi, roast duck, ribs, in fact most things you could think of. Plus the salad buffet was fabulous and as a slimming world target member it was heaven for me. However, the desserts were certainly not from slimming world, especially not the chocolate fountain. Couldn't help thinking of Dawn French with her "going in" comment to the chocolate fountain.

The beach as I have mentioned is beautiful and we did a 90 minutes walk every morning, you could walk for hours and hours and not come to the end. We thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the holiday, you still had people going down at 6.30 in the morning to put towels on beds but there was no need, there were plenty and the hotel was full! There was a lot of smokers but as a general rule they were very courteous. I gathered the house wine was awful but just stuck to cocktails or rum and coke and that was fine. All in all a lovely relaxing, chilled out holiday.

Room Tip: There are quite a lot with no sea view so make sure you stipulate sea view if that is what you like
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank SusieB53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

3,753 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    1,994
    1,107
    370
    157
    125
See reviews for
430
2,283
47
27
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (748)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Charlotte, North Carolina
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed May 6, 2013

I am not one to normally write reviews, and do typically take the 5 star and 1-star reviews with a grain of salt on TripAdvisor but wanted to give my feedback and thoughts on positives/negatives of the resort. The only other all-inclusive my wife and I have stayed at is Excellence Playa Mujeres, so I may not have the best insight into how this resort compares to more mid-priced all-inclusives.

First the positives:

Service – Service was good at the bars/restaurants. Drinks were made quickly and the staff was generally very friendly. Never a problem getting a drink.

Beach – Second best beach I have been to after Turks and Caicos. A large amount of shade under the palm trees which was very peaceful.

Room - Fine, no issues, AC worked well, was well appointed

Negatives:

Front Desk - Upon check in we were pulled to the side and told that we were very lucky and that we were upgraded to the Riu Palace Bavaro, the finest hotel in the fleet, to which we replied that we have specifically booked this hotel due to its adults only nature and we would prefer to stay here. After 30 seconds of blank stares they indicated that the hotel was full and there weren’t any accommodations for us here. I read a similar review of this happening on TripAdvisor and thought it was a one off occurance….but it isn’t. There were a handful people that were transferred over every day because the hotel was overbooked. The hotel movement caused us to miss our blue travel rep to schedule our return trip to the Airport. After numerous attempts to meet the rep in the lobby (who never showed) I had to use the front desk phone to arrange our return travel on our final day. It took nearly 30 minutes to arrange our return transport and I started receiving attitude from the front desk that I would be charged for the phone time, at which point I almost went over the edge. Luckily all was finally resolved but needless to say the laziness and unaccountability of the front desk staff was a prime detractor from the hotel.

Food & Drink – Another review paraphrased the wine and champagne as gasoline and that review was accurate. Probably the worst wine/champagne I have ever had. Beer was ok, only one kind, the mediocre local Presidente. I would have preferred more options, but suppose I should have done my research ahead of time. After reading many positive reviews on the food at the resort, I am at a loss as to how anyone could rate the food so highly. But then again lots of people think Applebee’s/Chilis is a great meal as well, so who knows. The food was bad, and the chefs have no idea how to prepare basic dishes. There is an American food section that features such delicacies as hot dogs with slices of kraft cheese melted on top and pizza with squid on it (YUMMMMM!). I grabbed a burger one day and it crumbled apart with each bite…..probably was some sort of rat meat.

Entertainment - The formal shows at night were ok, but the animation staff is terrible. I have no idea why you even have an animation staff at an adults only resort. Love nothing more on vacation than having some guy come up to me every five minutes in some new costume asking me if I want to get up and party. I had to pretend I was asleep so they didn’t come and bother me. I think 5% of the people in the resort actually enjoyed the animation staff, while the other 95% of people avoided them. The staff models their entertainment after the show Sabado Gigante, which if you haven’t seen is characterized by spurts of fast music and danceing for 15 seconds, followed with expectation that you will applaud. It is not applause worthy.

Other Random thoughts:

Everyone smokes. Bothers some people, doesn’t bother me. If it bothers you, don’t come here.

Décor for all the Riu chains is odd. Particularly the Palace Bavaro. The architect must be a huge fan of Scarface or something…place resembles a 1980s Miami Nightclub.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Matthew K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed May 5, 2013

Just returned from 2 weeks at the Macao 16-30 April. Had an excellant relaxing holiday, all the staff were very attentive. Rooms are lovely very light and airy, kept spotless with day and evening maid service. There is also 24 hour room service, for snacks. mini bar kept well stocked with mixers and beer and optics of vodka, rum, whisky,brandy on the wall. The whole complex is spotlessly clean, food is good and restaurant is open for most of the day so you won't go hungry here. The animation team work hard to ensure you enjoy day/evening activities. I found the evening entertainment a bit repetative, the same dancers almost every night and live music, both more suited to the over 60's!! But there is the Pacha nightclub nextdoor, opens after 2300, you pay for your drink here though. You can use the facilities in the Bambu and Naiboa, the beach party at the Bambu on Friday night is fun for a lively evening.
The only negative issue I have was the pathetic individuals who save sunbeds from dawn til dusk and never/ hardly use them, exacerpated by the pool staff indulging this practise (probably for tips). We often saw guests save two, one either side of the pool so they could move with the sun. Get a grip people and relax, you don't need to be on the same sunbed every day, and why save it when your never going to use it? But you get this everywhere I guess. I agree with an earlier review, that they should have a tip box, where guests can leave tips for backroom staff, gardners, cleaners etc they all work equally hard to make your stay a good one. Definately would recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mandie310863
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kitchener, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed May 5, 2013

We just got back from a 1 week stay at the Riu Palace Macao. We had a lovely time there although we probably wouldn't go back. Here are the pros and cons:

The Pros
- The staff were fantastic. Definitely the friendliest and most attentive staff of any resort we've been to. They never let your glass run dry and would offer mamajuana after every meal. The buffet staff have their section that they work in every day/night, so I recommend sitting by the windows overlooking the pool and you will be treated well. They learned our names the first day and greeted us by name every time. We did tip them but they definitely deserved it!
- We had access to 2 other Neighbouring Riu resorts which was a nice bonus. They were very close and had easy access
- The room was generally clean and modern. The furniture was new, there were double sinks, the bed was comfy (with the exception of one stinky pillow that we just put on the floor ... It probably got wet at some point so it smelled mildewey).
-The resort was very well maintained and modern. There are lots of places to sit and enjoy the scenery and the resort has a nice carribean feel. Compared to the two neighbouring Riu's (Bambu and Naiboa) the Macao was definitely the nicest and the cleanest.
- The resort is well laid out so that you're close to everything, and the beach is very close to all the rooms
- The staff do a great job of quickly cleaning up plates and dropped food, so birds are not an issue in the outdoor eating areas, which we've seen at some other resorts.
- The resort is quiet, peaceful and not too busy. There generally weren't lines for anything and you could always find a table/chairs/sunbeds wherever you wanted.
- The beach is wonderful. No
shortage of chairs, and white sand as far as the eye can see in either direction. There is also a little snack bar right on the beach if you get hungry during the day.
- The food was reasonable, we found it pretty typical for an all inclusive. Nothing was spectacular but it wasn't bad either. Lots of selection, but it did get repetitive after a while.
- The resort is close to the airport (30 minutes) so no long trip on the way there/back
- The front desk, like all the staff, were helpful so check in/check out was a breeze
- I believe that all of the rooms have balconies and we enjoyed that
- There is a street with shops right beside the resort, which was sort of fun to check out and you could get some souvenirs. There is also a doctors office there if needed.

The Cons

- One of the biggest cons of our vacation in general was that there were constantly people trying to sell you things and it got tiresome after a while. Not all of this was the Riu's fault (eg. Beach vendors selling cigars on the beach and off resort property - which we were advised not to buy because they could be made with banana leaves which is apparently bad). But there were also some vendors on the property selling excursions, Segway rides, etc. This would all be fine except that they're very pushy and don't take no for an answer. We did the Soana Island excursion and that was even worse (BTW, wouldn't recommend that excursions) so we were a bit tired of constantly being asked to buy something.
- The ocean was pretty choppy most of the time (red flag 80-90% of the time we were there). We prefer calm waters so this was a con for us, but the water was lovely.
- The room keys are real keys (not cards like at most places) and we only got one room key to share between the two of us. When we asked for a second key, we were told that they only have two keys, one for the guest and one for the front desk to keep. This wasn't a big deal for us, but I could see it being a challenge if you want to do different things.
- The bathroom is interesting. It definitely looks modern and is nicely designed, but essentially the wall separating the shower and the bedroom is made of glass blocks. This has a few implications. First, it means you can actually see from the bedroom into the bathroom, and so I had a direct view of the toilet from the bed. Although the glass distorts the picture, you can still see well enough. This would be especially awkward if you were travelling with friends. Second, the bathroom light completely illuminates the bedroom, so not great if one person gets up in the middle of the night.
- The room was pretty humid the whole time, which again isn't the resorts fault and comes with a tropical climate. The solution to this seems to be to blast the air conditioning so our room was always freezing (the maids would turn the AC up when they cleaned). The bed also didn't really have a blanket/duvet, just a slightly thicker sheet, so combined with the AC it was kind of chilly at night.
- There are Mosquitos so bug spray is recommended (they do sell it at the gift shop for a low cost of $14 a bottle). I got about 20 mosquito bites my first 2 days there before I got the bug spray, but my husband got none. So it may or may not be an issue for you.
- The daytime entertainment at the pools was virtually non existent. There were no games going on in the pool, no music played during the day. We're certainly up for quiet relaxation but it did get kind of boring. That being said, you can go over to Babmu next door, which has a much livelier feel. Perhaps this is intentional because the Macao draws an older crowd??
- Near the end of the week, the maid stopped giving us facecloths despite the fact that we tipped everyday. Not a big deal, but a little annoying.
- And finally, although we're not certain, we think the maid may have stolen some money from our beach bag during the turn down service on our last night there. We had read other reviews of theft so we were very careful, but we had about $10/$15 in the beach bag for tipping and stuff. When we came back from dinner it was gone. It's possible that it was stolen during the day while we were at the pool, so we didn't make a fuss about it, but we had kept a close eye on our bag during the day so we think this is less likely.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Dee_Matt0909
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed May 4, 2013

Stayed here for two weeks at the beginning of April, I cannot say enough good about this hotel, when we booked it was shut for the refurb so we took a chance, we were so glad we did, the staff were so friendly we never met one without a smile, food was excellent and so much choice you could always have something different. The beach was beautiful ( our main reason for returning to dominican ). The people here are so nice and work so hard to make you happy, I would like to thank them all for a wonderful holiday and hope to return next year. We have stayed at several riu hotels and as usual have no complaints with this one.

Room Tip: We had a ground floor but was a bit noisy in the afternoon maybe a higher floor would be quieter.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank wong18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indiana
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed May 4, 2013

We just got back from a weeks stay April 27th - May 4th

For the amount that you pay for this all inclusive adults only resort, it is a good deal. It's not the best we have ever been to but, you get what you pay for. I'm giving it 4 stars based on the amount I paid and the good service of the people that work at the resort.

Rooms: Clean and look just like the pictures. A/C works great. Keep the balcony door closed. House keeping does a great job, though they are always low on towels. Not the house keepers fault. This is a management issue. They do keep the mini fridge stocked with soda and water.

Resort grounds: Very clean, well kept, very nice.

Beach: Very nice. No children in the Palace Macao area. No beach drink service and it's a bit of a walk to the bar. Plenty of chairs.

Pools: Nice and clean. Temperature is good. Service is good at the pool bar and at the pool. We didn't like the card/pool towel deal. Just give me a towel and be done with it. Don't tell me you are going to charge me $20 if you don't get my card back at the end of the week. Chairs and beds are nice and clean. Plenty of chairs.

Food: okay. The presentation is great. The presentation at the dinner buffett is like non I've ever seen, it is really impressive. The flavor is just ok. If they put as much effort into the flavor of the food as the presentation it would be awesome. The specialty restaraunts are only available with reservations and the food is just okay. No other choices for lunch or breakfast except buffett. Lots of selection, good service. I will say that we may be a bit pickier about food than others.

Service: The service is very good everywhere. Buffett or reservation the service is good. Service is good at the bars and at the lounge areas.

Drinks: Terrible. The wine is horrible, the red is better than the white but still not good. The whiskey and the vodka is what ever they have on hand. It does NOT matter what the bottle says the whiskey is not Canadian Club, Jim Beam or any other brand it all tastes the same, terrible. They do not ever have an unopened bottle of whiskey, they just pour what ever they have in the bottle and serve it. We even had them pour small shots of the 5 different whiskeys and the 3 different vodkas at the main bar and they all tasted excactly the same. We were not very impressed. Again this is a management issue. This was our biggest complaint of the entire vacation.

Gym: If you like to work out, the gym is not very nice. You have to go to the Riu Bravia for a decent gym but it does not have any free weights. But they do have nice Life Fitness machines. No one from Palace Macao will tell you about this gym because technically you don't have access to it but you can just go over and use it and no one says anything. They will tell you to use the crappy smelly gym on Caribbean street if you ask about the gym.

Casino: I would not recommend it. Not impressed with the games they try to play. The black jack and regular table games seem okay. They tried to show/ talk us into a crazy "carnie" game that I'm really suprised the the Riu would even let them play. We did not put any money of our own in on this game but we all walked away with a bad taste for the casino.

Entertainment staff: They do a great job of getting people involved in the daily games and evening entertainment.

Over all I think it was a fair price for what we got.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank love-the-sun8978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed May 4, 2013 via mobile

Just returned from 2week stay at Palace Macao. Had an excellent holiday staff all very friendly and you are treated the same if you tip or not. The rooms are very clean with beautiful bathrooms and showers the towels are changed twice a day in the morning and then in the evening when the maids do the turndown service even if they are hung up. Bedding is changed every other day and the drinksman makes his rounds every evening to replenish the fridge or if you miss him reception has water. The only complaint I could make about the rooms is the cleaning was rather late sometimes 4-30 which is annoying when you have left your room at 8-8-30 in the morning especially when you want an early shower if you have an early dinner reservation. We always managed to get sun beds and shades but you didn't want to be round the swim up pool for the day if you wanted peace it could get very rowdy especially if certain people spent the day drinking but there are quieter areas and a very beautiful beach. Food is very good like anywhere it can get a bit repetitive after a week. Animation team are very friendly and if you don't want to join in they do not make a fuss just leave you in peace but will always have a chat with you. The waiters a very good poolside and in the bars do not keep you waiting and are always thankful of any tips. I wish riu had a central area so everyone got a share of the tips the back room guys and gals all work very hard to make the hotel run smoothly but don't get the same appreciation as the front of house staff.

Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Pamela G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Punta Cana hotels
15.9 mi away
AlSol Tiara Cap Cana
AlSol Tiara Cap Cana
#24 of 111 in Punta Cana
4.5 of 5 bubbles 1,710 reviews
18.0 mi away
Alsol Del Mar
Alsol Del Mar
#46 of 111 in Punta Cana
4.5 of 5 bubbles 935 reviews
0.2 mi away
Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro
Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro
#52 of 111 in Punta Cana
4.0 of 5 bubbles 3,309 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.7 mi away
Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Green Don Pablo Collection
2.8 mi away
The Royal Suites Turquesa by Palladium
0.3 mi away
Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
#68 of 111 in Punta Cana
4.0 of 5 bubbles 4,888 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hotel Riu Palace Macao? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Macao

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Macao
Address: Playa Arena Gorda | Punta Cana, Punta Cana 35100, 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 High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#19 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Macao 4*
Number of rooms: 364
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana. * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. * Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Palace Bavaro, Riu Naiboa and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu. * The Splash Water World will be opened from 1st November 2016 * 3-storey building. Colonial style architecture. * Surrounded by 30,000 m2 / 36,000 sq. yards of palm groves alongside the beach. 50 km / 31 miles from Higey. 200 m / 660 ft. from Caribbean Street. 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Int'l. Airport. * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Orbitz, Hotels.com, Hotwire, TravelUp, TripOnline SA, Priceline, Evoline ltd, getaroom.com, Cancelon and HotelQuickly so you can book your Hotel Riu Palace Macao reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Riu Palace Macao Hotel Punta Cana
Riu Palace Macao Punta Cana
Riu Palace Punta Cana
Rui Palace Punta Cana

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing