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Clubhotel Riu Karamboa
Ranked #2 of 11 Hotels in Boa Vista
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 31, 2013

things you don't know;
January cheapest time to go. Waves red flag most days green flag still too scary for mum!
big pool heated wee pools not. cant buy tobacco Marlboro only cigs available NO CIGARS ANYWHERE on island. buy at duty free on way out. euros used for currency but they try to give you there own currency when you ask for change. girls in shop try to diddle you when you first arrive but just don't accept money unless change in euros. 16 euros for paracetamol. 28.50 for zovirax. take all meds you need with you. Thomson gather all meds you want to donate and give to hospital once a year. we gave ours to staff. bar tender almost kissed me when I gave him a pack of ibuprofen. when you get 200 euros a month no one buys medication. very poor area up in sal Rae 2 miles along the beach. riu spent 70 million investing in there hotel (which is better value compared to most of the Caribbean-£1000 per person cheaper, closer travel time and just as scorching hot) but 2 miles down the road people are living in squalor under tarpaulin sheets.
we did the quad bike 4 hour tour FANTASTIC. need your driving lisc no.although we shared a quad me on back and it was awesome, took in most of island, santa monica beach 18 km of nothing apart from 200 other tourists doing safari tours quad biking and beach bugging...... ha-ha but still lovely just like Scotland with heat.
food on resort fab,drinks fab,staff fab,everything fab beds a bit hard for me and had to ask(tip) for more pillows but no probs.
safe family resort my kids got drunk and reception staff walked them back to their room kids 18 but only just. food everywhere our favourite was the Asian restaurant actually Chinese. African served rabbit stew and horse. don't mock it, it works for tescos! didn't often have chicken just not available but it was a roast one night so over dosed then. the green ice cream isn't mint its pistachio and its theeeeee best pistache I've ever eaten and I've been to Italy!
big groups of men kept arriving at this hotel why I don't know they behaved mostly and were quite polite but it was a bit strange that BIG groups of them were always around. saying that if your a group of single women get yourselves out there.
loads of gay couples around the place too and it was just so relaxed and mixed its a definite no stress island resort right enough .
we mingled and met Dutch, French, British and Italians, as well as all the staff from many of the islands, we felt looked after from the minute we landed. Jamie and Sarah and Nadine the Thompson reps were fantastic. we didn't need them for much BUT 2 flights couldn't land due to sand storms in 2 weeks and one flight didn't even leave Manchester because of the snow. much fuss was made in the hotel and poor Jamie was professional in front of everyone but what could he do. people got to stay another day or two and what a place to stay. We were hoping it would be sand storms on our day but alas no. even though I say sand storms you can still lie at pool or on beach not hindering tanning time at all, remember wind burn took factor 6 and 10 sun cream still winter in my head but we all suffered next day bought factor 20 and factor 30 no kidding you'll need it.spoke to loads of folks around resort many of them been there before(good repeat business) august/September wet season.october bug season December expensive and rocking. so I think we went at a good time. my husband and I are thinking of going back for a week in November when we shall have loads of time and maybe a wee drop of money!
we went from Manchester 10th jan for 2 weeks we stayed at bewleys hotel the night before also brilliant and they looked after our car /transfers etc. the whole thing was just lovely. WE'VE BEEN ALL OVER THE WORLD TO ALL INCLUSIVE AND THIS IS GOOD. I PROMISE YOU.

Room Tip: WE WERE IN 1088 AND THE KIDS IN 1087 one block from reception handy to grab a coffee in the morning...
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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9  Thank shoneblether
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,316 - 3,322 of 7,344 reviews

Reviewed January 31, 2013

You pays your money and you takes your choice! As a reasonably priced,all-inclusive holiday sun destination in January, Riu Karamboa,Boa Vista,Cape Verde is more than value for money.
This was our second visit to this hotel in 3 in three years and there were two major differences since our last visit.The first was that the gardens are now mature and quite lush with palms,banana trees with bunches and flowering shrubs everywhere,oh! and not to forget the grass now growing in parts - no mean achievement since the place was originally built on sand.
The second difference was that it was noticably busier than our last visit with the whole of the EU being represented mainly German and French some Italian,Finnish and Danes. Nevertheless although busy it did give it a unique atmosphere and most people were friendly we found. If you wanted piece and quiet the hotel is big enough to find it without going to far.
The design of this hotel in the desert is unique like a series of sand castles that take on a glow in the moonlight. The rooms are spotless,sorted everyday and have a fridge and safe. Take your own kettle for tea if needed and the hairdryer is crap. Our room No 2247 had a sea view to the right complete with sunsets at 6pm and to the left we saw the sunrise at 7am from the balcony.
On the food side of things - there is without doubt plenty and argueably too much choice in the main buffet. We found two faults,if you wanted toast in the morning be prepared to queue as there are only two toasters which are so slow,anyone who invents a fast and efficient toaster will make a killing. The second,the chefs for some reason can't cook veg,especially cauliflower and sprouts - they were both well overcooked - although not many will care about that on holiday I must admit. There are 3 speciality resteraunts but they are all busy and you have to book 3 days in advance so you will have to be in reception for at least 8am and even then there will be a queue - all 3 are average and adequate and they are still buffet style but without the scramble.
The pool was cold and it gets busy round the main area with not much bed space around you,we just sited ourselves a little further back where there are plenty of beds and more room to breathe. The beach either side of the hotel is pristeen and goes for miles mostly deserted,to the right you can walk into Sal Rei the nearest town,just stay on the beach and keep walking,the hotel do an organised walk twice a week if you prefer. The kite and wind surfing facilities are exceptional especially in windy January with hiring from hotel or a few other providers further up the beach or for the expert take your own gear. The red flag came out on the beach 3 days out of the 14 we were there after all it is the Atlantic but the rest of the time even on the yellow flag the swimming was great with the sea warmer than the pool.
I'm not a particularly good flyer and I found the flight claustraphobic 3 seats either side and we both go for aisle seats but still its to tight especially having to come home like that which is bad enough. You can pre-book the exra leg-room seats to be fair,but you have to be quick. One day when they make the runway longer the big jets will arrive,when that daycomes maybe it won't be quite the same unique place any more.
Overall and as a first time winter break for us it hit the spot.

Room Tip: As you look at the beach from receptions veranda ask for last block on far right. You don't hav...
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Frank B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

hotel good ` staff cant do enough and work so hard , from entertainment staff to maids , bar staff and gardeners , they never stop. food , very good . good for families and couples alike.
try the beach walk on wed and sat to the village with the rep . no cost.
only down side is there needs to be more toilets on the ground floor level apart from the ones on the beach.
try taking paracetamol , ibrufen and other meds for the hospital , school and orphanage as they are so expensive . £15 for paracetamol. also note books , pens and pencils for the school. woman staff like trinkets for there hair, ie, clasps , bobbles, clips and slides.
very good over all holiday would go back and see the other Islands.

Room Tip: it is quieter by the sauna and top floors. A travel kettle is a must for your rooms as no tea and...
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank zacmoyra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

We are two couples who have just arrived back from the Karamboa hotel.We were a bit apprehensive as to what we were going to find after reading some of the bad reviews.When we arrived we thought we were in a different hotel to where these people had stayed.We were suprised how big the hotel complex was but although we were round the outer edge we were no more than a 3/4 minute walk to the reception,resteraunts,bars,pools or the beach.Our rooms were spotless and remained so for the two weeks we were there thanks to the maid who also made us some lovely towel creations each day.
The food was lovely wherever we ate and we ate in all the resteraunts and never had to have the same thing twice due to the huge selection of starters,mains and deserts {which were to die for}
We never had to push and shove and always found seats easily and the waitresses were quick and efficient in bringing us drinks and clearing our table beteen courses.
All the bars had self service stations for beer,wine,soft drinks and tea and coffee which eased any congestion at the bars if you wanted spirits or cocktails.
There is a full entertainment programme during the day for anyone to join in ,bouls,darts,shooting,water polo and aqua aerobics even bingo or you can just laze by the pool or on the beach soaking up the sun.We never had problems getting sun beds as the rule is no towels on beds before 9 am and the staff had no hesitation in removing them which upset some people who are used to going down an putting them on at 6.30.The entrtainments team do a great job keeping the guests happy and their shows at night are very amusing.
We went on the 4x4 jeep island tour which was a full day and we visited some interesting places and saw the cultures of the islanders.Well worth the money.There is also a walk along the beach with the reps to the famous social club which takes about an hour to get there.As I have walking difficuties we took a taxi and met the group there.We had a walk round Sal Rae and then went back to the social club where we had the most amazing curry which were served in very large portions after which we got a taxi back to the hotel paid for by thomsons.
The reps,the whole staff team from maids to managers and the entertainment team deserve BIG BIG credit for the jobs they do and all so happy and polite to guests.
For the people who are hard to please and like to winge on here why not try staying in the comfort of your own home or try the only uninhabited island on cape verde.

Room Tip: We did not upgrade and found our room comfortable enough and quiet at night.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank windhilltravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Just returned from 2 weeks at Riu Karamboa. Fantastic holiday.

Hotel staff were great, very efficient, pleasant and helpful. If ever we requested anything in our room (more shower gel for example) it was attended to immediately and a follow up call was made to check that it had been completed and we were happy. Everything was instant. We never had to queue at reception, never had to queue to get a drink and dining room service was very slick, seamless and efficient. Staff were very attentive.

Food was brilliant, delicious with lots of variety and of really high quality. Asian, African and Fish restaurants also very good.
Very handsome European chef some nights!

Pool area lovely and well maintained.

Would thoroughly recommend the Quad biking trip. Really good fun.

I would avoid the nail spa, i don't think they really know what they are doing. I had a UV manicure which was a total disaster.

My only concern about the island is that it will become too commercialized and developed. Particularly on the turtle beaches, I hope no animals are never forced from their natural habitat or any animals are taken into captivity. This would be the only thing that would stop me from returning.

Otherwise, I would definitely go back and would thoroughly recommend the area and hotel. Came home thoroughly relaxed and happy.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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3  Thank Katie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2013

just got back on the 28 jan 2013, 4 of us went on the this 2 week holiday and after reading some of the reviews before we travelled i was a bit worried that we had choosen the wrong hotel and the wrong location how wrong i was we had a fantastic time hotel was brilliant weather fantastic and we all came home really chilled out and all of us had lovely tans, there was a breeze all the time but i think you need that breeze other wise it would have been very very hot, the food was amazing something different every day i will say the first time you go into the dining room it does seem a bit over powering poeple all over the place getting their food but you soon get into the jist of it dont let it put you off, the only down side of the hol was the flight which was a nightmare but the holiday rep did tell us that they were changing the size of the plane as from next month if you havnt booked extra leg room i advise you to do so i wish we had done it, and if you or any member of your holiday party take medication take a couple of days exta with you just in case your flight is delayed it happened twice while we were there and both flights didnt leave cape verde until the day after once because of as calema and once because of bad weather back in the uk, We will defo be returning to this hotel excellent

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank jayne b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2013

Hotel is enormous and looks like a giant sandcastle from a distance & once inside it felt like a small village with shops etc. Check in was fine & suitcase taken to your room, only fault, found it difficult to find room even with the map given. Room was clean, spacious, and quiet & on high floor as requested due to travelling alone. Room cleaned daily to high standard with towels changed even if they had not been placed on the floor.

Tea, coffee, soft drink & beer pumps could be found in several places together with loads of bars if you wanted something different. Main restaurant food was of good quality & varied & could be eaten in areas outside of the restaurant which I liked. Also has 3 speciality restaurants, African; Asian & Cape Verdean which I didn’t have a problem booking. If you didn’t want to go into restaurant at lunch time food was available by pool area.

Pool area was very good & clean with plenty of sunbeds available whatever time of day. Swim up bar pool with Jacuzzi’s Beach towels provided free. All of the staff were very pleasant, particularly the waitresses who always had a smile and were quick to remove dirty plates & cutlery when finished with them.

Beautiful beach with plenty of sunbeds, sea could be rough so not always safe for swimming. You can walk along the beach to the capital of Boa Vista (nothing much there though) & this can take anything from 1hour depending on how fast you walk.

Didn’t bother with the entertainment as I went to do nothing but chill, relax in the sun and stroll along the beach when the fancy took me so it was the ideal location.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank PoshPanther
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Clubhotel Riu Karamboa

Address: Lote HO 1, Urb. Morrinho de Baguincho | Praia de Boca Salina, Boa Vista 4110, Cape Verde
Phone Number:
Location: Cape Verde > Boa Vista
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Boa Vista
#2 Spa Hotel in Boa Vista
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Boa Vista
#2 Luxury Hotel in Boa Vista
Price Range: $160 - $373 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Clubhotel Riu Karamboa 4*
Number of rooms: 750
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on the island Boavista in the Cape Verde Islands. 2-Storey main building and 3-storey annexes. Situated on the beachfront. Complimentary sun loungers and parasols on the beach. 7 Km to Sal Rei. 1,5 Km from the airport. Credit cards accepted: Visa, Mastercard ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clubhotel Riu Karamboa Hotel Boa Vista
Clubhotel Riu Karamboa Boa Vista
Clubhotel Riu Karamboa Cape Verde/Boa Vista

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