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“amazing place to stay!”

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Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Sardinal
Certificate of Excellence
Rochester, Michigan
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“amazing place to stay!”
Reviewed October 16, 2013

My girlfriends and I just returned from this property. It was a wonderful experience, clean resort, amazing array of food (must put in rsvp to some of the restaurants), live shows every night, entertainment at the pools all day, not crowded at all, super clean beaches, most generous kind staff and people. Swiss travel was a great company for transport and excursions. Falcon tours is also another amazing company we used for tours and that was the best time and money spent. The massage ladies on the beach are spectacular, right in front of the resort. Estephanny, Doris, Karina. $35 massages for one hour and listening to the ocean for music!

Room Tip: all the rooms seemed like a good location and had all great views of gardens, pool, or beach double...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank arleen s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
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English first
Yardley, Pennsylvania
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2013

My husband and I went to a 7 day honeymoon in Guanacaste area of Costa Rica. We stayed in the RIU Palace. We had a great time! The room was great, especially the view, we were room 4044. The restaurants were amazing, we were able to go to all of them. We did go to the lady in the first floor to make a reservation, but this wasn't a big deal like other people and other reviews make it seem. Tokyo and Papagayo steakhouse were delicious! We loved the activities by the pool, and the lunch cookouts such as Paella and Chicken BBQ they had right by the pool. The shows were good quality, our favorite one was Michael Jackson. The staff was so friendly and we did tip our housekeeper for our room a few dollars each day and she treated us so well and surprising us with details in our room.

Also, we booked our tours through HotelBeds company, they were in the lobby of the hotel (very convenient) by the bar in the 2nd floor. We also rented a car through the hotel and spent the day driving and enjoying the beaches of Tamarindo, Playa Conchal, Playa Flamingo, and Playa del Coco. This was the highlight of our trip! We also did ATVing, horse back riding on the beach, and enjoyed the inclusive water activities of paddle boarding and kayaking on the bay. We had a great time, I would recommend for any honeymoon couple or anyone to stay in RIU Palace in Guanacaste, it is beautiful.

Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank TatiWorldtraveler09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lehighton, Pennsylvania, United States
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed October 13, 2013

Visit was 10/5 to 10/12. Read a ton of reviews on this site before booking this hotel. Majority positive. Got to say, those reviewers that had complaints must have been at a completely different hotel, or they don't know value for money or how to have a good time, could say some more about this aspect but would probably be censored...but anyhoo.

Food Quality in General: Excellent. Buffets were wonderful, such a wide selection, breakfast at Arenal was great, and lunch at Papagayo was spectacular and what a wonderful setting. Speciality restaurants...Italian, never could find it open, not a problem...Steakhouse, I ordered the Ribeye, very thin cut wasn't great but I realize now, as you all should, that it needs to be ordered rare and it should come how you like it, my wife's Lobster and Filet were perfect, Krystal, was very good, however, the best was the Japanese specialty Restaurant...loved it, every course was superb. Just an FYI, I love food, I love to cook...all in all a great selection for everyone. If you can look out for Mauricio one of the waiters at breakfast in the Arenal, wonderful service.

As far as booking the specialty restaurants, Carolina, went out of her way to help us when we had to make a seating change for the evening on the same day as our original reservation. As to the specialty restaurants, you may book up to two days in advance. During this time of year that is no problem whatsoever.

This time of year: Rainy season...what rainy season, as far as I am concerned this is the best time to visit, lush green foliage, best price and great weather...7 days...high 80's to low 90's all week, rained twice around 4pm for about 45 minutes, and then at night a couple of times...came back with a great tan.

The pools etc...: Spoilt for choice. Entertainment staff: Wonderful, absolutely wonderful, standouts, Johan, Adriana, Grevin...just wonderful, make sure you take part in as many pool side events as possible, you will not be disappointed. Waiter's, Esteban, bent over backwards to help. Oh, the proximity of the bathroom thing, hey it gives you a chance to get up and walk a little..lol...Papagayo is probably closest, make sure you wear your flip flops or whatever, tile is really hot in the sunshine, and very slippery when wet.

Beach: Dark sand = hot in the sunshine...however, you can put loungers under the trees on the beach and you might have a 10 foot expanse of sand to cover before you hit the sand that has been cooled by the tide.

Excursions: All companies offer the same kinds of trips. Go to the Palace area of the beach and speak with Daniel, at the Guanacaste area of the beach speak with Sergio, they will be able to help you with everything you would like to do. Speaking of Riu Guanacaste, do take a walk over to the hotel, it is very pretty and the grounds even more so.

Massage: Tent number 2 with Carolina and Isabela....$65 for a 1 hour massage for two you can't go wrong.

Beverage Service: Excellent, and choices the same...what we did was tip initially $5 to all the waiters/waitresses that took care of us and then $1 at a time after that...never had to wait for a beverage, and the bar staff at the Coconut, pool bar, were great.

Wildlife: Saw whales and dolphin/porpoise from the beach, also a couple of black sea turtles mating (nesting sites are on the beach, check them out) Howler monkeys. Dolphin on our sunset cruise...

Go, have a great time....you won't regret it...in mho.

Should anyone wish, please feel free to contact me.

Room Tip: Go high, we were on the 4th floor garden suite. Which had the sun streaming in through the windows o...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank AvidGolfer42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Dover, Canada
Level Contributor
104 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed October 11, 2013

We just returned from this beautiful property. I read some negative reviews before I went and even after I returned . I am not sure that these people were at the same resort unless they went there in a bad mood. This resort was excellent all round . The staff was the biggest reason I say this. I wish I could remember all of the names but so many were great . Roth who was the top guy in the Krystal was so professional and even put up with us as we celebrated a birthday with 10 . He also worked the Steakhouse. Esteban spoiled us at the pool bar and served the chairs all around it . There was a couple of others at the pools but cant recall the names one was a young lady and I feel bad that her name no escapes me.. These people are truly special . Adriana met us on her first day and she will be further enjoyed by anybody who meets her . Another young fellow we met from the animation team and had lunch with had a girlfriend who worked at a hotel we visited in DR . The restaurants may have been closed on occasion because the hotel was not full . That makes sense to me as they provided excellent service everywhere that was open and it was efficient business. Each morning the staff would assist us with a little Spanish lesson . The resort was clean the pools were fun the animation staff were great the rooms were lovely . The beach was long and we walked it many times. We are avid travelers and this place was top shelf ( 33 All- Inclusives) . Take the stroll to the Monkey Bar Feel free to contact me for any advice .

Room Tip: We were in room 3094 and could not ask for anything better . Close to the pool , elevator , etc. gre...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank johnniebdover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MA
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for 9 nights on our honeymoon. The 5 pools are well-maintained and big enough that we never felt crowded. We never went into the swim-up bar because it was crowded and at times pretty rowdy. There are several waiters at each pool to bring you drinks. The service they provided was great, the drink quality average.

The hotel advertises having 5 restaurants...DO NOT BE FOOLED! The buffet is the only one that is open every night. On average there were only 2 to 3 restaurants open each night, some nights only one. Three of the restaurants you must make a reservation for and you only have 2 time choices 615 or 815 (don't try going early because they will not seat you even 1 minute early) The main restaurant is where the breakfast and dinner buffet are served. Although there is a wide selection to choose from, everything was luke warm or cold, which made Riu's average food taste poor.

Our room was the strangest room we have ever stayed in. There was 1 king bed in the middle of the room with a bath tub next to it. The shower wall is glass and the tile an ugly transparent purple. The sink was between the tub and the shower, but without any wall. So don't plan on any privacy! The toilet was in its own tiny room similar to a jail cell...cement colored walls with just a toilet and roll of toilet paper.

The front desk staff were less than helpful and seemed annoyed when anyone asked them for anything. I witnessed a woman ask Julia B for something from the medical kit. Julia said something to a co-worker followed by an eye roll. She also tried to short change us a dollar on a currency exchange and when called out on it offered no apology. She seemed troubled in asking the manager for the correct change,

On the weekends, vacant rooms are discounted very low for the locals. Thursday nights buses drop off loads of locals for the weekend. It was a nuisance that we were paying almost three times as much as a local paid for the weekend.

When my husband told the manager about the below average food quality at check-out he was very dis-interested. " We'll tell the chef's"...right!

It was also interesting how they brought out the review cards on Wednesday when the resort was empty and the service improved.

If you are a college student looking for all inclusive drinks and convenient meals this is your place. Honeymooners should look elsewhere unless the food drastically improves along with Julia B's attitude and math...

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Lauren W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2013 via mobile

We have stayed before in Palaces around Mexico and we have experienced extreme good service, food, amenities and more, somehow something was wrong in this hotel, people weren't that friendly or attention orientated, there was a lot of humility but I mean extremely high humidity in our room that all our clothes and luggage were wet, we couldn't do anything about it, and I am sure it happens to everyone who stays here, the hotel needs to install doors at the entrance of each hall to seal the entrance of humidity.

Anyway, we grabbed a Kayak to go around the beach and it was damaged, we almost drawn in the sea because of their lack of maintenance to their equipments, we complained but again the service was so badly that nobody cared so we thought that at least we can warn people here.


Their alcoholic beverages are so bad you won't drink much or enjoy drinking, maybe only beer.


Anyway, we found better value places nearby that made us decide never to stay here again.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DasOliver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seal Beach, California, United States
2 reviews
Reviewed October 8, 2013

Took a trip here in June and had a fantastic time! The hotel is very quiet, versus the bustling nature of the next door riu (which you pass gives you entry to). The staff went out of their way to be helpful, the weather was beautiful (I expected it to be a bit rainy) and I loved my time here.

Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Gabriel A
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 Costa Rica

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
Address: Playa Matapalo | Sardinal Carrillo - Guanacaste, Sardinal, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Gulf of Papagayo > Sardinal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling 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:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Sardinal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica 4*
Number of rooms: 538
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The hotel lies directly on the beautiful, fine-sandy Matapalo beach, next to the hotel Riu Guanacaste. * The guest of Riu Palace Costa Rica may use the facilities in sister hotel Riu Guanacaste, except dinner meal * Main Building 6 floors 538 rooms * Next City Liberia 42.0 km approx. * Airport Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR) 33.0 km approx. * Next ATM / Bank: 200 m * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica Guanacaste

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