It is such a shock to come onto this website and see that people are posting positive reviews. Either they have never been to a decent resort in their lifetimes, or perhaps they are referring to a different hotel, which is completely possible. The Riu resort has several "portions" to it that differ in price range. You are allowed to access all the amenities of the pay range lower than yours, but you cannot go to a higher priced hotel (makes sense).
The actual Riu Bambu I went to via Apple Vacations was sub-par at best. The biggest qualms I had was with the service. Never have I felt so unimportant in my life. The workers here carry on conversations with their co-workers as you are speaking to you and grudgingly offer assistance. The bartenders make crude remarks and enjoy your bikini line. We actually had a gardener offer us a coconut that he would cut open with a machete (which we took) and then he prompted us for payment. Out of no where. He works there!
Standard two bed bedroom was small. It wasn't European small; the room itself was just low quality. The shower was surprisingly small and so was the television. For the price I paid, I felt like I was in a motel. There is no wi-fi in the rooms, but the lobby does have a decent signal.
Don't plan on enjoying a high quality meal either. I saw other reviews tackle this, and I agree. The buffet has the same thing every night and calls it "international night". There were occasional good dishes, but they simply recycle them. Literally. Do they think we have no sense of what food is supposed to taste like?? They had restaurants that are supposed to be higher class since you had to make reservations, but this also was a joke. There was an Italian, Japanese, and steak house. I can't understand why they would chose to take on cuisines and not actually learn that particular cuisine. Italian was Dominican with parsley soaked in butter. All appetizers and desserts were the same as in the buffet. Japanese had CostCo style sushi and miso. This is the only thing that was Japanese about it. The main courses were cheap Chinese buffet and again, the same desserts as the regular buffet. I did enjoy the lychee tart and fruit tart that they had out once...but the second time we went (the regular buffet was really getting old), they used pastry that had clearly been sitting out; it was so soggy you couldn't eat it. Steak house was alright, but again, far below average to consider itself a steak house. How about a diner with ribeye? That would be more appropriate. I should also mention that they only have decent coffee in the mornings. The rest of the time, it all comes from a NesCafe machine.
This goes for all hotels in the Riu Bambu: the beach is not clean. It has the Caribbean water, but it appears murky. The beach is long enough to get a good walk in, but it is also so crowded that even if you get seats early in the morning, you are bound to be surrounded by people by noon.
Another side note: If you are not from a European nation and have children that are old enough to want to get dressed in privacy, be forewarned about the nudity on these beaches. Be prepared for a great deal of toplessness, speedos, and thongs.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located in Punta Cana * Situated on Arena Gorda Beach * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Palace Macao, Riu Taino and Riu Naiboa hotels * Main building and 1-story bungalow complex * Surrounded by 46,000 m2 / 50,300 sq. Yards of palm groves, adjacent to the beach * 50 km / 31 miles from Higley * 600 m / 1,980 ft. From Caribbean Street * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Int€™l. Airport * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Bambu Punta Cana
- Riu Bambu Dominican Republic