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“Good fun filled week but not 5 star”

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ClubHotel Riu Bachata
Ranked #10 of 40 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Reviewed 30 December 2010

Arrival was brilliant, we had a cocktail on arrival and check-in was quick.
Room: There's an optik in your rooms (changed every two days) and the size of the room was ample, the maid's are great and make different patterns out of the towels.

Staff: Very friendly (especially to young blondes) but always very happy and helpful.

Food: Slightly bland (and what let the hotel down) plenty of variety but quality nothing special for it's star rating. The gourmet restaurants weren't great and the snack bar wasn't refilled.

Entertainment: Brilliant! An enthusiastic animation team (and what made the week so fantastic! Plenty of activities day and night with great variety!

Cleanliness: Very clean with alcohol gel provided before entering the restaurant and grounds kept well.

Location: Not great. Too far out of town (5miles) for our liking so we felt very restricted to the complex (being two females) But you could always walk to the other two riu hotels or down the otherside to the beach.

Excursions: We travelled with Thomson's and did the outback safari with Jose and Kenny (Great fun) definatley recommended for a fun-filled day of seeing the real dominican and doing body boarding in the afternoon.

The hotel does fill up with locals at weekend's however they are pleasant enough!
Overall it was a good week and the hotel had special touches like special cocktails before dinner and some themed evenings. It also had plenty of facilities on site however it does not live up to it;s 5* rating due to it's food quality and slighty "caravan park" feel!

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank Welsh07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3,588 - 3,594 of 5,420 reviews

Reviewed 28 December 2010

Pro:
Good food for being an all inclusive resort. Lots to choose from and very fresh.
Nice and friendly staff.
Good cleaning both in the room and in the public areas.

Nice beach and beautiful surroundings.

Con:
Far away from any big city and going by taxi is very expensive.
The merchants that were allowed to stand in the lobby by the main restaurant once a week.
The bed was a little to hard for me.
The shows by the animation team were really bad.

Tips:
It rained a lot during the two weeks I were there. So don't go in the the beginning of December.
Buy shoes for the beach. Sharp corals and Sea urchins lure beneath the surface.
Take a trip to paradise island. Wonderful!

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Ullis_1982
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2010

Beautiful grounds, beach and pool. The staff was extremely friendly and went out of their way to make you feel comfortable. The food was not what a 5 star resort should offer. It was the same buffet every day- breakfast, lunch and dinner. It was bland and tasteless. The hamburgers were always raw, and it was definitely not 24-7 food. It was offered at the Merengue, but only until 2 am. The bar in the Bachata was open until 6 a.m., but the 'snack' fridge was often empty and not replenished.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with family
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3  Thank sisofkaroni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 December 2010

Just came back from the riu bachata on the 23rs with a delay of 24 hours, we were however looked after very well by the Thomson rep and the hotel who let us keep the same room. The hotel entertainment was simply excellent! They looked after the whole family the whole stay! There was an wide variety of food on offer everyday, something for everyone! It was all lovely! The cleaning staff clearly work very hard to keep the hotel as spotless as they do! Rooms are cleaned excellently everyday! And fridges and bars are also filled every other day! Food is on offer all day therefore no one goes hungry! Bars are open all day! Reception are on hand 24 hours and are a great help with anything that you need them for! The entertainment staff work tirelessly and on tiring shifts! From morning to night they are quite honestly an amazing team! I can't speak too highly of this hotel and how we were looked after on our second return! Outstanding!

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4  Thank Frankie_096
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 December 2010

Just returned after 2 weeks. Unfortunately ony had 5 days of sunshine but that's the luck of the drawer (worst weather in 120 years I was told - just my luck). Grounds are good, but I wouldn't class this hotel as 5*, more 3* really. Rooms quite small if you've got children and they'd only put 1 extra bed in (so ie 3 beds for 4 of us) which could have caused problems as kids wouldn't sleep in the same bed!!!
Had awful problem with 'sand flys/fleas' - legs were covered and spent many nights awake scratching like mad. Had to buy antihistamines from the pharmacy - and was also given them from our new friend 'Tommy' ;-) Word of advice - make sure you take medication of every kind with you as the chemist there is pretty expensive.
Found the kids entertainment very poor. First week they did nothing with the kids until I intervened and said the kids needed to do something (especially as the weather was bad). Livened up a bit on the second week but still was no where near my expectations. Kids came and went as they pleased with no supervision (so I was constantly up and down checking on them). Some entertainment staff seemed really 'unkiddy-friendly' and got irritated if the kids asked to join in with the adult entertainment (even though it wasn't exactly taxing stuff... ie hit the lemon, get a ping pong ball in a cup, etc...if you get the gist). Had a few problems with non-residents using the pool and getting extremely drunk and using bad language etc - which with children is just not on - the security did nothing much to intervene and we ended up having to move where we sat twice to protect the children. Evening entertainment was OK but bit cringy at times. Overall, I think my son 'Kai' who's 5 provided the best entertainment for everyone during the day and in the evening - even participating in taking the aqua classes ;-) If you were there between 7 Dec and 22 Dec - you'll know who he was!!!! Overall, not bad, but think I paid over the odds for it as it went drastically down in price before we flew (much to my annoyance) but hey ho. Met some lovely people and had 5 days of lovely sunshine to end the holiday with. Good if you can get it cheap enough but personally I was just a bit annoyed with the children's entertainment as this was one of the reasons we picked this hotel. Also, had no sleep for the last 3 nights as the 'Canadian's in our block came back in the early hours and had no respect for people who might be sleeping with small children'. Definitely wouldn't class it as a 'Platinum Hotel' as on the Thomson website.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with family
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3  Thank KentMic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 December 2010

This is somewhat of a long review, but its a fair read and I hope it serves you well :)

It's been awhile since I stayed here, so why write a review now...well, for one good reason...I didn't have the greatest stay at this hotel and wanted to take a step back after some time and really evaluate the vacation as a whole. In all fairness, I had spent a week at the RIU CARIBE (an absolute steal for the money) in Cancun 3 months earlier which ended up being phenomenal. BUT the things I do have to complain about, are legitimate...but might not end up being the case for you. Regardless, its NOT a 5 star by any stretch of the imagination, more along the realm of a 4 star.

**** FOR STARTERS: ask for booze in your slushy drinks, because if you don't...they won't. Seriously. In fact, I eventually got into the practice of ordering a glass of straight rum with my drinks so I could pour my own mix. I didn't see ANY name brand alcohols by the way, if that matters to you.

Now with that said, this hotel COULD be EXTREMELY good. The grounds are gorgeous,
not just the main grounds, but all around the resort...its definitely worth walking around and taking it all in, especially by the cliff at the end of the property. The pool is very nice (with a swim up bar) and the other 2 franchise hotels add something fresh to the mix each and every day whether it be food, entertainment or people.

The rooms, well...my room, was basic but nice and nothing to complain about. Keep in mind that the outlets need adapters for your electrical devices to work, the ones that I got from the resort were shoddy and unsafe. I would suggest bringing your own, but its not that big of a deal.... if you like to iron, boy are you in for a treat...you must RESERVE one. Again, its not a HUGE deal...but if you're selling yourself as the FLAGSHIP 5 STAR resort , you should pony up an iron. Thats just my opinion. The fridge always had beer (only 2 at a time though, so hide the ones you don't drink) and housekeeping was on top of their game :)

Food was good, nothing great... like most places, you have to make a reservation, which was never a problem. I enjoyed the Mexican restaurant but the choices were limited and is nothing special if you're expecting something sensational. The Asian restaurant was good, but wasn't really Asian food.... the STEAKHOUSE was the best, from what I recall, I ordered the prime rib and it was good. The other dishes I had were not good at the STEAKHOUSE. The buffets were limited for my liking, not to say that YOU wouldn't like it...but I don't consider myself to be too picky with that kinda stuff and found it difficult to find things I really enjoyed, but there was always something to eat. There is a buffet next to the pool in the main building and one not that far away from the pool on the other end. BREAKFASTS were awesome, no complaints there.

Beach and Pool were great. I have read about sand flies or something of that nature...this is something you may or may not have an issue with. The first day I went to sleep on the beach, woke up 2 hours later with small bites that were very itchy and raised the entirety of the trip. There was one lady that got bit REAL bad and her entire leg was treated with medicated ointment. My girlfriend on the other hand, sleeping right next to me, never had any issues....nor did the couples we befriended. The pool was nice, always something going on and the water was at a great temperature. They would also play games in the pool, like CONTACT water polo...Lol, which for me at 33, was fun....maybe not so much for others, but they did have a kids game after the adults played. I was fortunate to have six full days of sunshine with only one day of rain. In fact, its the sunniest vacation I've ever taken...and SUNSCREEN is a must, you WILL
peel, bubble and blister.

There is also 24 hour bar which has sandwiches and coffee, as well as drinks of course...nothing special, but gets the job done. The night time entertainment is hit or miss, the Michael Jackson show is good and people liked the GREASE play they put on. There is also a lil casino on the resort which I found quite fun :) I enjoyed my time there...and if you see an older gentleman standing by the door doing security who smiles a lot and speaks next to no English, toss him a cigar if you happen to have one,he enjoys a good smoke :D

The service was there AWFUL...nobody went out of their way to resolve any of our issues, from the shoddy adapter in our room, to simply getting an iron when promised....they weren't rude, but came across uninterested. If the service would have been on par, it would have made it a much more enjoyable stay. But every time we had a request, nobody would or could go out of their way to lift a finger....including the servers at the BUFFETS.

Hopefully you have a better experience than I did, because if you do...you could possibly fall in love with this place for the price, if you could get this for $1000 or under because its not worth more than that in my opinion. Personally, I wouldn't go to this place again, even on a good deal...they didn't earn that from me...but they COULD earn it from you.

Regardless, I did have a good enough time (no thanks to the staff) which is usually GRADE A at a RIU...so it was a real letdown to have the "help" not help. I'm not some stingy, cranky and hard to please kinda guy...in no way am I stuffy or MR FIVE STAR. I just really appreciate good service and it just happens that this time around, I didn't get it. It happens.

With that said, safe travels my friend and if you have any questions, feel free to email me at
dmcmorris@hotmail.com I have loads of good quality pictures that I would be more than happy to share.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Canadian_Bacon_eh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 December 2010

Ok, this is pretty long winded but I want to give as much detail as possible as I don't think some of these previous reviews slating it are fair at all!

I took my girlfriend for her first long haul holiday as I have previously already been to cuba, costa rica and mexico and have always told her how amazing these holidays were. Well the Dominican and the Riu Bachata surpassed every aspect of previous holidays! The hotel check in was the easiest I have ever had. We just handed in a form we filled in given to us on the transfer, and they handed over a envelop with keys, towel cards and welcome note. The room was large, immaculate and well furnished, and as for the bed, I've never seen such a size! And then there was the complementary drinks bar that I made a lasting bond with, topped up every other day, optics of rum, vodka and brandy and a fridge of water, soda, coke and beer.

There were so many aspects I want to cover so I will break it up....

Hotel grounds- Bachata is the largest on 3 Riu hotels on the complex. Visitors can use the facilites of any of the 3 hotels except for dinner, however Bachata has it all so we only walked around the others but stuck to using our hotel. The pool is split into 3 sections with net for water volley ball, nets for polo, kiddies pool and swim up bar. The pool is immaculate and is cleaned daily and I mean scrubbed! The complex has its own long stretch of beach that is the perfect picture of caraibbean, with plenty of beds, shade from palm trees and soft sand. There is 2 outside bars near the pool, and bar staff that walk around all day fecthing you a drink of your choice.
The gardens around the complex are kept perfectly, and are great for that early evening walk to take in the sunset before dinner, or if your feeling the need a nice jog (personaly I chose to chill out for the holiday!)
The reception area of the hotel was a great place to sit about on comfy chairs and use the free wireless available if ou have taken a laptop or an internet phone. Being December they had the best Xmas tree in the middle I have ever seen! There are 2 restaurants that are clean and comfortable and do not have that school canteen feel that some all inclusive hotels tend to have.
there is also a small street just out the hotel thats part of the complex called caribb street that has shops selling cigars, souvenirs, etc, a small gym and a pool hall both free to hotel guests.

Staff- These are the nicest, most hard working, well trained staff I've come across, from the what seemed hundreds of cleaners that never seemed to go home, the smiley gardeners, the hyper active entertainment teams and the singing bar staff! Everyone says hello, every single one smiling and every single one works so so hard.
Dispite being surrounded by bikini clad women all day the staff do not perv at all, and were very respectful.

Food- WOW. And WOW. I had 3 courses for breakfast, lunch and dinner! Everyday. Were wary of the food before leaving and packed the pills first ready for the upset stomachs as mine isn't the strongest and I can get ill even smelling a curry! But I was fine all week! The food was amazing from fresh fruits, lovely pasteries, baked deserts and assorted dishes. There is the option to book a table in the other restaurant for a italian dinner or steak meal depending on the day. We had a steak dinner one evening and it was delicious! You don't have to worry about the water used to wash salads, poured for dinner or ice cubes in your drinks, they use bottled water for everything.

Entertainment- If you are worried about getting bored laying around all day in the sun then there is more then enough to kepp you busy. The staff run around sorting darts comps, putting comps, volley ball both beach and pool, water polo, table tennis comps, salsa lessons, beach football and more all day. There is also wind surfing, snorkelling and scuba lessons run from the beach, all inclusive of your holiday.
In the evening the is the nightly show time with plenty of dancing, some games and lots of laughs, with the same staff as the daily entertainment. I cant see where they get the energy, I struggled to stay up past 10! There is also a small casino just off the main bar that runs every evening.

I think the major reason this hotel works is because hwo well the staff are trained and how much they seem to love their work and take pride in their hotel.

There is plenty more to this hotel but I will stop going on now, I just can't wait to go back in the new year! Keep it up Riu!

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank deanofitzy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Bachata

Address: Bahia de Maimon, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#5 Spa Hotel in Puerto Plata
#8 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range: £88 - £170 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Bachata 3.5*
Number of rooms: 610
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on the beach in Maimon Bay * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Inside the Riu Resort, along with ClubHotels Riu Merengue and Riu Mambo * Main building plus 1 and 2-story bungalows * Surrounded by 50,000 m2 of tropical gardens * 9 km / 5.5 miles from Puerto Plata * 25 m / 81 ft. from Caribbean Street * 25 km / 15.5 miles from Puerto Plata Intl. Airport * 500 m / 1650 ft. from a bus stop * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Diners ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Bachata Puerto Plata
Clubhotel Riu Bachata Hotel
Clubhotel Riu Bachata Puerto Plata
Riu Bachata Dominican Republic
Riu Puerto Plata
Bachata Riu
Club Hotel Riu Bachata
ClubHotel Riu Bachata Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata

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