Well, my boyfriend and I and another couple (we're all 24) got back yesterday after an amazing holiday at the Riu Vistamar. We stayed for 2 weeks, and our friends came out to join us for the 2nd week. When we arrived at 2am food was laid out for us, we weren't hungry so we did not have any but our friends did when they arrived. They said it was mainly salad and bread but I thought it was impressive to offer food at this time. We had emailed in advance asking for a room on the 5th floor and said we wanted to eat our evening meal at 8:30pm (they offer 6.30 or 8.30), both requests were granted, so a very good start! Our friends asked for a close to us and they were located 2 rooms down from ours.
The rooms were lovely, the views from the balcony outstanding - all you could see was the blue ocean, there was lots of storage space (very handy when we did not pack lightly!), plenty of hangers which makes a change, very clean, free safe box, fridge and powerful shower which again makes a change! The only negative was that the air con was ok, but not great. I would agree with a previous review and say the 5th floor is probably not the best as the sun beats down on it, the 4th floor would probably be better in hindsight. However, it did not affect us much. The maid comes in daily and always left the room really clean and tidy. You can ask reception for as many free litre bottles of water as you want - really helpful having them in the fridge in the room.
The staff are absolutely wonderful, definitely the friendliest staff I have come across, they were even friendlier than on a 5* cruise I have been on! The very trim and fit guy who does the aqua aerobics was hilarious (he reminded us of a gran canaria Louis Spence!). Definitely a highlight of the holiday, his camp dancemoves had us all in stitches! It was my holiday when I was over there and lots of different staff sang happy birthday to me and arranged a special decorated birthday breakfast table. They also left a fruit platter and bottle of wine in my room which I thought was lovely.
The food was incredible. I usually prefer self catering places but this hotel has definitely changed my mind! I am a pretty fussy eater but the gorgeous food even got me trying new things. Everything was so so tasty, even down to the vegetables. Contrary to some previous reviews, the food was plentiful and was very varied. The only snag (and I am being picky!) is that the tables in the restaurant are placed very close together!) However when our friends arrived the 2nd week a 4 seat table was arranged and that felt less cosy with the next tables. You can also choose to book a table in the pool side bar where there are themed evenings - there is no exytra charge. BBQ was Tues-Weds, Asian Thurs-Fri and Mediterranean Sat-Mon.The BBQ night was our fave (we had it 3 out of 14 nights) - the meat was so tender and fell apart. My boyfriend would have about 6 pieces of the steak on his plate! The drinks were also really nice, plenty to choose from. Personally, the wine on tap was lovely and I enjoyed the cocktails on offer. Not once did we feel like eating out. We only did once, on my birthday as we ventured along to Playa de Ingles.
The only real negative about this hotel was the evening entertainment. The day entertainment programme was really good (sports, bingo, aquagym were the ones we sampled) but most of the evening stuff was poor. Saying that, the external acts were pretty good (eg. an acrobatic act, Michael Jackson and Tina Turner tributes, African dancers act), but the shows by the internal hotel entertainers were disappointing and cringy at times. They did give it their all though and were trying really hard to entertain. Therefore some nights we ventured out to the centre of Puerto Rico (a bar called Tropicana was good fun). Taxi was 3-4 euros each way so pretty cheap, especially when there was 4 of us. There is also an area of bars, restaurants and shops a 5 min walk from the hotel. There is a bar there called XTREEMZ and it was brilliant, I would definitely recommend a visit. The DJ Russ is hilarious, there are shots at the DJ booth and he is a comedian/quiz master. He gives people nicknames depending on where they live (I was Miss Bristol), or your football team etc. He jumps between telling jokes and asking questions, if you know the answer you shout it out and you either have the shot yourself or nominate someone else in the bar (at his discretion!) Always had a wicked night there!
People have said there is no problem about getting subeds, but that's rubblish. If there is more than 2 of you, you do need to get down by the pool by about 9-10am to have a chance really. When it was just the 2 of us, we strolled up at about 11 or 12 and we were fine.
I would recommend a trip to Paltimos animal Park. We went there on my birthday and it was a lot better than anticipated. People have moaned about the 28euro price but it is definitely worth it! We were there from just before11 to half 4 and we had a wonderful time. There are loads of types of animals and the setting of the parl is lovely - it's surrounded by greenery and so there is lots of shade which was nice in the intense heat!
I would not recommend going on the SuperCat catamaran, at 50euros each I thought it was awful. I thought we would stop off for several swimming stops in the sea but there was just one. It boasts an all inclusive day and the food was nice - chicken, potatoes, salad and bread but the drinks were cheap and nasty, really cheap and horrible fizzy drinks. Real rip off, we figured out they make 12,500 euros on each 5 hour trip. My advice is do not bother!!!!
My boyfriend was violently ill one day but it only lasted 24 hours. Initially we thought it may have been the dreaded food poisoning but we soon found out (from talking to others) that others had had it and seemed to be a 24 hour bug. The hotel is really, really, really clean so I can only imagine that guests had brought the bug in. Despite this, it did not ruin our holiday, but I imagine it would have been worse if we had only been there for a week. When he was ill the staff were again really lovely, calling our room phone to see how he was.
There is a little fishing village place called Puerto Mogan nearby (you can catch a sea ferry there for 8euros each return) - definitely go there, they call it "Little Venice" and it is SO pretty! There is a market on a Friday so worth going on that day.
On our last day we wanted to keep our room (as we were not leaving until 12 hours after checkout) but we could not as the hotel was full. However they arranged for us to have use of a complimentary room to shower and get ready etc (this was because the shower room to be used for this purpose was very busy). So again they went the extra mile to make us happy. It was also a bonus as we did not pay the 50euros to keep our room and ended up getting to use a room anyway!
Overall an AMAZING holiday. The gorgeous sea views, the friendly and accommodating staff and the wonderful food are the main benefits of this hotel. We have come home with amazing memories (and larger waistlines- oops!!) We would definitely return. In fact there was a family there who had been to this hotel 8 times and I can understand why. The only reason I would not go back is that I like to experience and explore different places, but I will definitely pick a Riu hotel if I go to another resort/Country.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Set on a cliff overlooking the sea * 9-story building * 900 m to the beach * Complimentary bus service to the beach * 2 km from Puerto Rico * 900 m from various shops * 45 km from the airport * 100 m from a bus stop * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa, Diners ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotwire, Travelocity, TripOnline SA, Cancelon, Hotels.com and HotelQuickly so you can book your ClubHotel Riu Vistamar 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:
- ClubHotel Riu Vistamar Puerto Rico, Gran Canaria
- Club Hotel Riu Vistamar
- Clubhotel Riu Vistamar Hotel