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Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
Ranked #74 of 114 Hotels in Punta Cana
Reviewed February 9, 2014

This was my 11th trip to Punta Cana. We decided to upgrade this year and picked the Riu Palace. I did not read the reviews until after I booked so was really nervous after some of the bad reviews. We were pleasantly surprised. I do not think it is a 5 star hotel but it is quite nice. The common rooms look like a palace, very elegant and beautiful, the bedrooms are large but need some updating as does some of the paint in other areas,but all in all it is beautiful. We did not have musty odor and the airconditioner worked great.
The beach was wonderful with plenty of chairs. There was a beachboy who came around with drinks all day so you did not even have to get up and go top the bar. The food was quite good with a big variety including lobster one night . You must remember this is not America so the food is different but anyone should find something they like. The desserts were spectacular! Tiny confections with very interesting decorations.
The staff was very friendly except for on bellhop.. Our maid was wonderful and made towel decorations with flowers every day. Our bed was also turned down a couple of nights
All in all, we were very pleased

Room Tip: I was disappointed that we had a rom in back on the second floor but with elevators it was no proble...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank wagnersinn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 8, 2014

We loved the Riu Palace and Punta Cana! We stayed at the Riu Palace Punta Cana last week and had a fantastic time. I would definitely recommend this hotel. We had beautiful weather, great staff, fun entertainment, buffet was good, restaurants on premises were good. Hated coming back home to all the snow and cold. Wish we were still there! We will return!

Room Tip: Ask for an inside room that faces the center courtyard
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  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled with family
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8  Thank Debra D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 7, 2014

We were just looking for a relaxing break in the sun. After checking out lots of properties on TA, selected the RIU because we enjoyed a wonderful stay in a RIU at Paradise Island a few years ago.

Perfect choice. Impressive from the time we rolled up in the shuttle from the airport, and walked into a huge, high-ceilinged and light-filled lobby. Check-in was flawless including the welcome cocktail! The room was terrific ... lots of space and a great balcony overlooking the plaza and with a view along the fountains and pools to the beach and water. Had a whirlpool tub! We found we spent most mornings on the balcony, just soaking up the view and people-watching. Food was very, very good. We tried three of the specialty restos, and, of course, the 2 buffets. Lots and lots of excellent seafood dishes from ceviche to, one night, a special lobster BBQ! Drinks were good quality. Entertainment every night was very good. Relaxed on the beach, people-watched over a drink in the plaza. We found our favourite resto was at the edge of the beach, the steakhouse. Usually took our wine to the second floor to enjoy the view. Terrific, friendly service from every staff person we met.

Oh, I mustn't forget to mention the 'mini bar', a standard feature in every RIU, apparently. Four full-size bottles in a wall-mounted dispenser!!

Terrific sleep every night ... entertainment ends and it's nice and quiet, even overlooking the plaza.

Gets a very solid recommendation from us!

Room Tip: Ask for an ocean view, ideally one overlooking the plaza!
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank TO_Trips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 4, 2014

This hotel will take your breath away. It truly looks like a palace. The rooms are like mini apartments; they are large, spacious, clean and quiet. It is easy to want to just hang out in your room all day and relax. With room service and the mini bar included in the all-inclusive rate, staying in is definitely a possibility. We took advantage of the room service a couple mornings during our stay and were pleasantly surprised. We did notice a couple cultural differences; for example, my husband ordered milk thinking it would be a cold glass of milk but was a hot glass of milk instead. The beach is the best one I have ever been on; there is numerous coconut trees to provide ample shade and a cool breeze coming off the ocean to help keep cool. The hotel staff is very welcoming and friendly. The only downsides to our trip were the extreme difference in temperature between home (-3 below zero when we left) and here (84 and very humid) which took a toll on our bodies and the shirt requirements for men. About the time we were getting used to the warmer temps, it was time to go home. My husband packed almost all sleeveless shirts and could only wear them in the sports bar to eat; we would have liked to have had one other option for eating in casual wear. We only did one excursion while visiting, the Outback Safari, if you want to check out my review.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled on business
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5  Thank Lisa S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2014

THis is the first RIU we have been to, and we have to say the Bar is set now.. This Riu Palace was Gorgeous.. from the Chairs and Chandeliers in the Lobby to the Suite that we stayed in was beautiful.. The Pool was gorgeous and awesome too.
We received welcome cocktails while we were checking in.it was easy, very fun..the beach is right there and the People are friendly. The best Maid ever - we had was Anna.. she left beautiful creations made of towels and flowers in our room everyday.. and even flowers on the bathroom sinks. and the best waiter was Juan1. Everyday going to breakfast and supper, He welcomed us and had a table ready for our party of 5. The buffets were Outstanding.. Everyday there was Amazing, beautiful food creations. i cant even describe it.. The atmosphere was very friendly. We even had liquor dispensers in our room if we wanted.. and They always made sure our fridge was stocked with water, pop and Cerveza.. yummm.. This is a great place to be. For us, We would go on this trip again, but not with kids.. There was a little play area for kids, but I felt this resort was a more mature resort, not a young party every night, all night type of resort. which we liked. They also had a small area of Souvenir shops, which started out expensive, but you can make deals at some of them. We took US cash and it was a good idea, because they did not see to want our Canadian Cash. We only booked the Japanese restaurant at the resort, I expected them to cook in front of us, but it was more of a Sushi Restaurant...I have no complaints about this hotel, and would go back again. Oh and it said stay and play at 5, however if your in a palace you cant go to another palace and can only use certain things at the other resorts.

Room Tip: ask for a room on the first level.. the 1--- and try to get a room facing the fountains or pools.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with friends
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7  Thank WenMichele
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2014

Were repeatedly harassed by entertainment staff, very rude and intrusive, the same to be said of the housekeeping ladies. When housekeeping asked to leave my hotel room, she spoke in Spanish, stating clearly that she did not understand, funny, after asking nicely in fluent Spanish, she continued to clean and pretend not to hear me. The food was horrible, rancid, actually lost weight on this vacation. After asking entertainment crew to please refrain from harassment, they were all very rude and insulted us in Spanish repeatedly, which I understand and speak fluently.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank anna c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2014

I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this resort to anyone and I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have by email. Our email is inthepool@sympatico.ca My wife and I travelled to this Riu on the advice of our travel agent. Overall it was a great experience. About 25 mins from the very quaint PC airport - complete with thatched roof ! Highway to resort is two lanes in both directions and in A1 condition. There are 4-5 Riu hotels side by each and I would say that the Palace PC is the nicest of them all. Our room was in the 2000 series and we were on the 3rd floor...the first floor is the 0000 series. There is an elevator and we used is only to take our luggage up and down. The rest of the time we took the stairs - gives you a chance to wear off the food and alcohol ! The rooms were very spacious and fairly well appointed. A lot of people say they smell musty and I would agree - kind of like going to a cottage in the summer. The weather is hot and damp - although it didn't feel humid. After the second or third time returning to the room you don't even notice it and it was by no means unpleasant. The king sized bed was firm and very comfortable. The AC worked perfectly. Everything in the bathroom worked perfectly - there is plenty of hot hot water ! Our housekeeper kept our room spotless and the linens and towels were of good quality. The mini bar fridge is always restocked with beer, water and pop. We kept all our valuables in the room safe and never had any problems - keep the key with you - they say there is a $50 charge if you lose it! There is a deadbolt on the door as well and we felt very safe. The resort itself has a very Spanish influence. From the moment you enter the lobby you know you are in a 5 star Caribbean resort - quality furnishings everywhere. The open air plaza is where we spent most of our evenings - plentiful tables and chairs. The ala cart restaurants were great - especially the Krystal and the Steakhouse - my wife had surf and turf on more than one occasion and the lobster tails were enormous - cooked perfectly and the beef tenderloin could be cut with a butter knife. The grounds are very lovely with all the hedges, plants and fountains. There are two pools - side by each...one is a round infinitely pool - maybe 25-30 feet in diameter and the larger pool in right in front of it. The pools are fresh water and probably 4 feet deep or so. The pool was always very clean and the swim up bar always very popular. I would say one of the best features of the resort is the beach, it is quite wide and full of mature palm trees. Loungers are plentiful - but if you wait until 1030 or 1100 to look for one you might have to look harder - lots of people do "save them" by putting their towels across them. Honestly, we never were disappointed in finding one. Plus there are lots around the pool as well, in 2-3 rings separated by privacy hedges - a really neat feature actually. There is always music playing around the pool and a lot of the activities occur here as well - the staff are very friendly and try to get lots of people involved in the activities - but they don't bug you if you just want to sit and read or drink, etc. I would say the beach is busy - there are quite a few resorts along that stretch of beach and I would guess literally hundreds of people on the beach walking past. There are also a lot of water activities in front of the resort like parasailing, sail boats, motor boats and the like...and while the beach and the water was very busy it wasn't terrible at all or noisy - there were no jet skis and those can be quite loud. The water was fairly calm and very warm and clean. The beach is very clean - there is a very little bit of seaweed stuff but it is raked up everyday - there is no jelly fish or anything nasty like that. The beach is public and our onsite tour rep said not to walk the beach at night. Also, there are a number of "sellers" (beach clothes, sunglasses, cigars, etc etc. along the beach - they make themselves visible to you but they didn't bother us at all. The water gets quite deep quite quickly and all the resorts have a roped-off swimming section. There are no life guard on the beach in front of the Riu - there are some in front of other hotels. I would say the Riu beach is about the best there is - lots of palm trees instead of man made sun shelters that some of the resorts have - it truly is awesome. It's a fairly quiet resort - there is a small area of slot machines, no night club/disco. There were nightly "shows" in an indoor theatre area off the main plaza but we never went to them - I really don't think they were that great - we could always see them in the distance - but you're not going there for the nightly shows anyway. All the staff were excellent. The food was better than average I would say. Tips ($1 US) always appreciated by the wait staff. You will always find a broken chair or umbrella around the pool as well a chipped marble tiles, etc...but don't sweat the small stuff - if your closet door sticks a little bit, live with it - this is a great resort - built in 2006 and they do get "lived in a lot" so things do get worn and broken - but it's minor stuff...this is an A1 resort and if you choose it you won't be disappointed.

Room Tip: If you want a room with a nice balcony overlooking the gardens and fountains...I would say a room in...
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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20  Thank RMoyer2014
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
#62 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#63 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#67 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#67 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $237 - $464 (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):
The 24-hour All Inclusive Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana opens all year round and is located in holiday area Punta Cana on the Dominican Republic's eastern coast, it is part of RIU Resort with four sister hotels, is situated on the Playa Arena Gorda, which stretches for 26 km. RIU Palace is the most elegant category in the RIU hotel chain, with hotels that meet the highest standards in terms of luxury, excellence and sophistication, creating a unique experience. The location is ideal due to its proximity to Punta Cana Airport PUJ (25 km) and El Cortecito (10 km) and invites you to explore the area. The hotel has 612 cozily furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi and offers many amenities. Relax in our spa, or get in shape at the gym. 4 outdoor pools, 1 children's pool. Day and evening entertainment, as well as our Pacha discotheque. For lovers of gastronomy, we offer live cooking stations at our main restaurant, Japanese, Brazilian, Italian, Fusion restaurants, as well as 5 bars. ... 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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