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“Bad hotel for Mariage”

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Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
Ranked #69 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Reviewed May 12, 2013

We been there from 18 april till 30 april 2013 for our mariage with 18 guest. The hotel is not trying to make your wedding a special day of your life. If you have lots of dollars, than you can do everything. The a la carte restaurant are also bad, noisy, forget a lots of thing, bring the wrong menu ect. If you're trying to book one more room, they give different price. We will never go to RIU PALACE PUNTA CANA. In the package was also including honeymoon room, it was not avaible,ect....

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank Anjella H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 12, 2013

Went to Riu Palace Punta Cana beginning of April. One of my favorite overall vacations ever! Crystal clear ocean water, great beaches with silk like white sand. The pools are fantastic with all day staff entertainment. Throughout the day, the entertainment team comes around with sign up sheets for games around the resort. Ex. volley ball, darts, ping pong, horse shoes, bingo etc. Every day at 12:30 the entertainment team has water aerobics in the pool with whoever wants to be involved. In the pool, there is a great swim up bar which is all inclusive too from 10 AM to 6 PM. Everyone always has a great time all day long! Multiple buffets and restaurants llocated iside the resorts. My favorite was the Italian which is not a buffet. Also there is a Brazillian steakhouse, Japanese restaurant. For dinner at the buffets, there is always a different theme each night for dinner. Tacos on Mexican night, pasta on Italian night, also has a choice of lobster tails almost every other night. The staff is so nice and accomidating to everyone. Most everyone but the the room maids can speak a variety of english, french, and spanish. The only things that I dislikes about the resort was room accomidations. Most all of the rooms have a musty smell and require a hand held key to enter rather than a sliding room key. If you want better room accomidations, you can upgrade to the presidential suites which have the best view of the ocean and the whole entire resort and much more room accomidations. Also in the presidential suites, there is a two story balcony with a spiral stircase leading up to a private balcony which has a jacuzzi/ bath tub on. Inside the suite, there is both a king size bath tub and a stand up shower. A walk in closet, living room area which includes a couch, flat screen TV and night stand, and also a bedroom area with a king size bed, a dresser and a TV. Also, in all of the rooms whether or not its a presidential suite or not, there are mini bars inside the rooms with alcohol dispensers and a fridge stocked with lots of drinks including alcohol and soda. The fridges get refilled with drinks every two days unless you are in the presidential suite which gets refilled every day.On the beach, there is fantastic straw hut shopping about a mile and half walk to the right side of the resort beach. If you decide to cheeck the huts out, the workers will try to persuade you and pull you into their hut to buy their items. If you end up wanting to buy an item from a shop, do not pay their asking price to begin with. For example, if you are buying a pair of cheap sunglasses the worker will most likely offer you from around 50-75 dollars. Give them about 10 dollars and say thats all you have. They will probably give in to the offer. In the resort, there is always fantastic entertainment shows at 9:45 every night in the outdoor theater which also has a bar inside the theater that you can still watch the show from. If you have small children who need to get out of the sun some of the day, you can take them to the kids club, "Riu Land". IT has a play station system and lots of board games that the worker inside will always keep them entertained with. Also, included in the kids club is a kiddy pool, mini playground with swings and sand to play in. There are also chairs the parents can lay on as their children play in the facility. Inside the lobby, there is a sports bar with a mini casino to gamble in. The sports bar always has games you want to watch on the TV. There are also computers in the sports bar which anyone can use but they do cost money and are not included in the all inclusive part. There are shops inside the resort too including a jewelry store which you are unable to barter at. If you decide to get something, you have to pay the asking price of the worker of the store. There is also a spa located inside the resort which you can book a time to get a massage or any other thing you would like. In the spa facility, there are locker room for men and women which include a steam room and a sauna in each of them. If you walk out of the locker rooms, there is two jacuzzis in an air conditioned room with a waterfall inside bothe jacuzzis. The water in the jacuzzis is cold water mostly for cooling off in after you get out of the steam room or sauna. It has open windows in the jacuzzi room looking out into the beach and ocean. The excursions from the resort are amazing too! Including, snorkeling, zip lining, outbacl safari through the jungle, scuba diving, and lots more. I recommend going on the excursion called, the Marinarium. You get taken on about a 30 minute bus ride at 8:30 AM to the destination. Then, you get onto a catamarran boat with loud music and basically a party on water. You cruise the Punta Cana shore line then finally stop at a coral reef to jump in and snorkel with tuns of amazing fish. You also get the choice to go into a screened in area in the reef that has sting rays without the stingers and sand shark which have no teeth but are the size of a typical shark to swim with. You get your picture taken while holding a sting ray and it is so much fun! The marinarrium is highly recommended. You get back to the resort around 1 PM just in time for lunch. Also, throughout the day, you can walk to any of the other three Riu resorts located within a half a mile walk on the beach. Riu Palace in highly recommended vacation spot for a family of any ages!

Room Tip: Recommend upgrading to the presidential suite for a quiter, non musty smelling room with tons of pri...
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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7  Thank Ben L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2013

We are used to cruising every year so this was our first All-Inclusive. 15 cruises for me and 4 for my husband. We would say it exceeded our expectations!

The service was amazing and the food selection was great! So many food choices. We guess to accommodate the European guest. Everyone was nice and friendly. Try the croissant french toast!

Stay here if you are looking for a Spanish looking resort. The entrance and the lobby was gorgeous! The resort layout was the best of all 5 resorts on the property. We enjoyed the "Welcome Drink" upon checking in!!!

You can visit the other resorts based on the hotel you book. Here is the order:
Riu Palace Bavaro (newest one/very modern-kinda like flashy Vegas)
Riu Palace Macao (has the casino/very modern)
Riu Palace Punta Cana (this present review here/Spanish decor)
Club Hotel Riu Bambu (kinda like a motel/low end)
Hotel Riu Naiboa (kinda like a motel/low end)

So, if you are staying at Palace Bavaro you can go to all 5 resorts, but if you stay at Macao you CAN'T go to Palace Bavaro. So, if you stay at this one Palace Punta Cana you can only go to the two below it Bambu & Naiboa!! You CAN'T go to the two above it!!
Now please note, the ones above the one you book that you can walk and look around but you can't use their pool or eat at their buffet.

(we were very happy with our choice as this one has the best decor & layout)

Things to know:
-Buy the plug adapter at gift shop for $2.
-Free Wi-Fi !!
-We were glad we didn't pay extra for the oceanview because we were never in the room!!
-Most of the staff DOES NOT speak English but they will find someone who does and then take care of your every need. (The translator app on my phone helped alot!) The front desk & main waiters speak fluent English, everyone else, not so much!!
-DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT DRINK THE WATER! It is not purified. So, no worries they have bottled water everywhere.
-DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT BRUSH YOUR TEETH WITH THE WATER! It takes some getting used to but better then being sick!
-Some people say do not have them put ice in your drink. We had it a few times as we forgot to tell them but we were okay thank goodness!
-Dancing every night but only for 1 hour. The entertainment staff dances with the guest! Nice touch!
-Nightly shows not as good as on the cruise lines....:(
-Entertainment staff very pleasant and were always around. All of the guest know all of their names. They all seem to know at least 4 languages-Spanish, English, French & some German. They were polite but not very professional. (only real negative) Cruise lines staff more professional. Not anything that would ruin a vacation though!
-The pool was awesome. We were there everyday! Be sure to go to the coconut party at the pool.
-Huge buffet next to the pool for lunch.Main dining room has lunch avail too.
-Oh, its HOT there!! Bring a hat and sun block....
-The beach-dancing & morning stretch on the beach. They constantly bring drinks out to you at the beach chairs!!
-Be sure to book your restaurant reservation between 8am-10am. They fill up fast!!The steakhouse on the water was the best out of the three we tried for my husband. The sushi & the fried ice cream at the Japanese restaurant I thought was awesome. Basically, you won't miss anything if you do not make any of the sit down restaurants because the dinner buffet was massive!!
-Jacuzzi at spa is only COLD water. So, if you want it hot use the Jacuzzi in your room.
-Massage was good but not as great as the cruise ship (but a lot cheaper!)
-There is a bar tap in your room with a fully stocked fridge!!
-You do not have to spend the $5 to print your boarding pass. Just go the the front desk and email them what you need printed and they will do it for you!
-As mentioned lots of Europeans so the ladies wear nice dresses in the evening! (dress code in all dining rooms for dinner)
-If you walk to the beach and turn right & past the Riu properties there are vendors to buy your gifts from. Be sure to bargain!! The ones on the resort are sky high. But, if you do decide to buy on the resort please note you CAN bargain with them!

Our only other disappointment was that it wasn't noted that the dance club was under construction. As my husband and I love to dance, if we would have known that we would have gone on a different date!! The one hour live band each night was not enough!! We flew home on May 7th & it was still under massive construction!!

In closing we definitively recommend this resort!! Have a great trip!

Room Tip: We were glad we didn't pay extra for the ocean view rooms because we were never in the room!!
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Yvonne S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2013

This was our 3rd visit to the Riu palace Punta Cana and I can only say it was just as good as the first. We did find that this year it was much busier in the area although the hotel was not as full as last year, we are not pool people so we spent every day on the beautiful beach with the breeze and the drinky drinky boys just perfect. There are always sunbed available through out the day either in the shade of the palm trees or full sun if you prefer.
If you are looking for a relaxed laid back holiday this is the place for you, if you need busy busy then maybe you should look else where.
We always eat breakfast early and dinner late so we were always able to have a table outside look for Thomas on the right hand side as you enter the restaurant look after him and he will look after you !!
One thing to mention if you have a late check out and you don't want to pay the $10 per hour to keep your room there is a lovely shower room (one male, one female) which you can use if you wish to spend the day on the beach.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank wendywoody
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2013

This hotel chain has very nice hotels. They feature lobbies with staircases and columns.
Beautifully sculpted walkways, nice pools and lots of entertainment.
All-inclusive is a welcome deal, with several restaurants for better dining than the ones that dont require reservations.
Rooms are comfortable, nicely decorated --clean and large.

Shopping and other amenities close by (taxi).

Night entertainment is good, plenty of international flair.
Open air venders in the evenings. Good buys on jewelry and art.
I have stayed at Riu palace in other countries as well. Nice decently priced hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Maisha4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2013

We have gone to many all-inclusive resorts and this one by far is at the very top of our list. We spent 3 full weeks from April 16th - May 7th, 2013. The rooms are very nice, very well maintained.
The facilities are breathtaking, the lobby is a work of art. The staff is very friendly, the waitstaff felt like family by the time we left. In fact we are face-booking with some of them. The food was fantastic, calamari, lobster, tenderloin, carpaccio, desserts to die for. The hot food bar in the buffet must be at least 80 feet long. There was something for everyone to eat, even Vegan selections if you desire it. The TV in the room had plenty of English speaking channels, as well as German and Spanish. We met Germans, Italians, Russians, Greeks, Dutch, Canadians and Americans. The rooms are very clean as are the bathrooms. The Riu are connected so you can walk the beach boardwalk and get to all the other resorts. If you need diapers or special toiletries bring them with you as things are very expensive at the resort. The resort does supply shampoo and cream rinse, also bath soap, anything else can be purchased at the Colonial Shopping Mall, (within the resort), however they are very expensive. ei: a roll of lifesavers was $4.00! Plan ahead, bring sunscreen with you. Bug spray is not needed as they spray the brushes and we didn't get bit by anything.
We enjoyed the Krystal Restaurant the most, the food and service was great, look for Benito the Maitre D' he is great. The La Altagracia was also great for dinner, we didn't care for the Bodega as we felt the food was overcooked. The entertainment was fantastic, in the 3 weeks we were there it never repeated. The dancers were very professional, and the routines were well directed. They even had a Michael Jackson impersonator that was very, very good.

Room Tip: We had a junior suite, on the inside room 2082, it was much quieter than the rooms that fronted the...
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Kathi48836
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2013

They say first impressions count as it is the most remembered, not sure if this is the case with the Palace Punta cana, yes the raised reception area is very grand with its polished stone tile floor and high furnished ceiling and is the first thing you see on arrival, then bell boys whisk you off to your room (in our case 2137), as a couple we found the room to be just the right size light and comfortable and spotlessly clean and the bathrooms was well supplied, the damp musty smell that other reviewers have commented on was present but IMHO not as bad as people made out (some other tropical luxury hotels have much worse smells), the shaped towels with flowers on was a nice touch .

As this was our honeymoon (after 20 years together) we had booked the 24/7 gold option, the fridge was stocked daily with fresh drinks and water and room service was fast and reliable any meals ordered by room service arrived on time piping hot and fresh.
There is a choice of restaurants, starting with the buffet restaurant, we always ate inside and the staff where quick to show you to your table and offered drinks as soon as you where seated, there is quite a good choice of food on offer at meal times, we found all the food to be fresh well preprepared and tasty, there are also restaurant other on-site that you do have to dress for, the restaurants that we tried where Japanese, Brazilian and steak house (we never tried the Italian), the Japanese was a disappointment as some of the food was undercooked and took so long to arrive that some guests got up and left (we did having waited over 30 minutes without desert), the Brazilian and steak house where our favourite, but I suppose it is down to personal preference.

The pools where OK, but because they are not huge they filled up quickly (more so for water activities), and I spent most of my time out of therm, I do advise getting to the pool early in order to get the best recliners parasols and little tables (if you do use a table leave something on it to show it is taken), the staff are good and are quick with bringing your order (as with all of the hotel staff if you tip them they cant do enough for you), the only downside is that the pools are not open at night.

Next to the pools is the beach, other reviewers have said all there is to say about it (away from the water you do have to watch out for stones and some discarded items in places) , but I do have to say it is a stunning and the water is gorgeous,

Overall the complex is very enjoyable that caters for most taste and is very safe to explore, Caribbean street can be a little expensive but do try bartering first as besides being good fun it will work out much cheaper, most of the larimar is real and good quality, but be very careful with the Amber (one shop had a large scorpion inside a piece that was just a cheap Chinese resin copy), there is also an ATM in Caribbean street, but if this is not working then follow the road to just after the security barrier and you will find another ATM on your left next to the staff quarters.

The trips that you can book where good fun (we booked ours through Thomson), the outback trip was our favourite and the guides are good fun and very informative, lunch was tasty, and they never stop offering you drinks, but it is a very rough ride and not recommended for people with spinal problems ( I am still suffering from my trip), the shopping trip was disappointing only in the fact we where told we would be going to where the locals shopped which was not the case, instead it was just a gift shop, retail outlet, and the parrot rum factory (which was good fun and value).

We only stopped for a week and packed so much into our trip that it would take so long to review it all, but the hotel is good value for money, and was one of the best breaks we have ever had, in spite of the poverty and constructions taken place just outside the complex I do recommend this hotel and the service they provide and we are planning to go back in the not to distant future.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank Chris R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana

Address: Playa de Arena Gorda, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#43 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#44 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#57 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#60 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#63 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#63 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $171 - $467 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana 4*
Number of rooms: 612
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana * Inside the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Macao, Riu Palace Bavaro, Riu Naiboa hotels and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu * The Splash Water World will be opened from 1st November 2016 * 4-story building * Surrounded by 63,000 m2 / 75,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 40 km / 31 miles from Higuey * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Intl. Airport Accepted Credit Cards: MasterCard, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Punta Cana Riu Palace
Riu Palace Hotel Punta Cana

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