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“PLEASE Book Somewhere Else; PLEASE Trust Me; Facilities Are Old; Needs Renovation; I'd Suggest Excellence Punta Cana”

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Hotel Riu Palace Macao
Ranked #43 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 7 June 2010

I should have know when the welcome drink tasted like watery kool-aid that something was up. My wife and I arrived at the resort with high expectations and were immediately disappointed. If you are a young couple looking for a place to relax and unwind, this is NOT the place for you.
The rooms at Palace Macau look and smell like your grandmother's house. Look at the user photos here on tripadvisor and see the broken refrigerator (ours was broken and took 4 hours and a second call to the front desk to fix).
The bed covers are damp and wet. Not romantic. Doesn't quite get your woman in the mood. Neither do the hideous curtains from 1955. Or the two moquitoes flying around the room that blended in with the paint and were really tough to locate and kill.
We ordered room service one day and put our food outside of the room for someone to take. 12 hours later the food was STILL there. Hotel workers just walked by and ignored it for hours. Not a good idea considering the number of bugs and nifty mosquitoes flying around in DR.
The fan in the room was very loud and seemed in need of repair.
The food at the outside restaurant near the pool is not good. Stay away.
Macau has no bar in the pool. The bar near the pool is dark with little visibility of what liquor is available.
The hotel does not put out enough serving spoons to match the number of food dishes in the buffet. As a result, guests are dipping the same spoon into serveral different dishes. This is very easy to remedy, yet this hotel's management does nothing.
The tableclothes were dirty at dinner.
The headphones in the Internet center do not work. Doesn't sound like a big problem until you are trying to use Skpye to get away from this wretched place and the person you are calling cannot hear you on the other line.
We were so disenchanted that we left abruptly in the middle of our vacation and booked at the Excellence Punta Cana, which was fabulous. No comparison between the two places.
If you must book at a RIU, please book the RIU Punta Cana. We walked there from our hotel and felt like we were robbed. The lobby is gorgeous. The grounds are well kept. The restarants looked much more modern. RIU Punta Cana is $25 per night more expensive but the difference is huge and worth it.
The energy level here is dead. The nighttime shows were blaze. People resorted to playing cards and dominoes to occupy themselves. If that's what we wanted on vacation, we should have just gone to the park near our house.
This is NOT a 4 star hotel. This is NOT a 4 star hotel. This is NOT a 4 star hotel. I can't say it enough. Save yourself the trouble and go somewhere else.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank knowmadd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,353 - 2,359 of 3,971 reviews

Reviewed 4 June 2010

This is an honest review of the hotel, as stated in previous reviews the hotel is a little tired in some places. I travelled to Sandals St Lucia in November and would have to say that this hotel is on a par with that one. The staff are falling over themselves to do whatever they can for you. I think if you tip at the beginning of the week your service will be slightly better, and they all deserve the tips anyway.
The food quality is really good for an all inclusive, everyday they had fresh fish including mussels which were cooked right in front of you (cant get much fresher).
Crystal restaurant was very good, recommend the seabass :-)

The whole place was fantastic, the only thing that i would say is that make sure you are not opposite the Bambu hotel, they are currently doing it up and the building work starts at 7am.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Rites
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2010

I think this will be a nice place after they tear it down and renovate. Right now it is musty, moldy, and old. My fridge is broken, there is no battery cover on the remote, the banasters are rotting at the bottom and I feel far from paradise. The service is ok and the book is not great but I am disturbed by the cross contamination in the cooking pot and serving spoon since I have a food allergy. The buffet food also sits out for a long time.

I have been to two star hotels which are much better. Save yourself and go with a top 5 hotel if you are coming to DR. Now that I am here I feel trapped and I booked with Priceline so the hotel won't help me out of here and I can reach Priceline. Do yourself a favor and don't come to DR unless you spare no expense.

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1  Thank Jjordan220
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2010

I had a great time at this resort to celebrate my friend's wedding. I was amazed at the impeccable cleanliness and size of my room. The food was delicious and home-y (Dominican fare being my favorite). The wedding party couldn't stop praising the freshness and tastiness of the food. There was entertainment everywhere you looked (those provided by the staff and those of the hotel guests, if you know what I mean). The staff was genuinely courteous and friendly, always trying to make everyone feel comfortable and welcome throughout their stay. I met a Belgian couple who has been coming to Palace Macao for the past 10 years. I believe that kind of customer loyalty speaks tremendously about the quality of the location. I must say that Pablo Picasso, Sexy Boy and Tweety (the entertainers/dancers) outdo themselves every day and night with their tremendous energy and hospitality. I wish I could have taken them home with me!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled solo
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4  Thank Bruja83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 May 2010

This is my 2nd time at the RIU Palace Macao. I had a wonderful 1st experience two years ago. I will definately return to this resort again. I traveled with a group of 7; two couples and 3 single ladies. The staff is great! They were friendly and kind. We reunited with most of the staff we met our first year there. Neitherless to say, they recognized us right away.

We were greeted with a welcome drink. Rosemary at the front desk was extremely helpful. There was a mix-up with my friends luggage. A party grabbed the wrong luggage, very identical. Rosemary took the information from the luggage tag and called the party right away. She found out which resort they were staying at and had them place the luggage in a taxi to our resort at the Macao. She went the extra mile. The airport baggage claim was not re-assuring itself.

Drinks of Punta Cana is the mama juana. You must try it. I believe its is vodka, rum, and honey. Note: You cannot bring DRY mama juanas to the airport. You must have it wet, therefore fill the dry mama juanas with rum from your hotel room.

Food is great. I would recommend buffet all the way. Or you can try our method: Have a late dinner seating at the buffet. Make reservations at restaurants for an earlier dinner time. Therefore, if you do not enjoy the food, you will always have the buffet as back up! My least favorite would have to be the Sushi. Ham and cheese sushi??? Steakhouse was great, but keep in mind that the restaurant is outside. We were practically sweating at dinner.

The beach is beautiful at Macao. No seaweed. Fresh coconuts are warm of course. Plenty of beach chairs available. For excursions, we did the Carribean Festival with Sting Rays, Sharks, and snorkeling. Well worth the money! We also did zip-lining. Zip line was awesome but the ride there was a bumpy adventure in itself.

They have evening shows to attend. Not the best, but entertaining. As a young group, we enjoyed sitting at the lounge and dancing at the PACHA. There is one pacha night club for all the RIU resort, or near the Macao. The other is call the Imagin but we did not go to that one. The pacha plays house, merenge, and mix music. Drinks are not included in the all inclusive package at the pacha. There is no cover. However, the majority of your staff from the resort will be there after their shift. Very respectful and will teach you how to dance. Its a great opportunity to buy your waitors drinks for a job well done. (Even though we tipped all the time.) After several conversations, you realize how much they get paid and the hard work that they do. $1 and $5 goes a long way. And you would think that the staff would treat their guest differently from those who tipped and those who didn't. They don't.

All the major resorts are all lined up along the beach. As you keep walking, you will notice yourself walking pass different resorts. There is a market on the beach. Make sure you barder! Immediately drop the brings down to 50% and work from there.

Rooms was fine. AC was awesome! Didn't care to spend any time in the room. No complaints. Naps were taken on the beach.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with friends
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4  Thank Nit_B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 May 2010

I have taken five holidays all staying in Riu PALACES, in Cancun, Aruba, Playa Car and Dominican Republic. I had always been told and experienced the fact that if you were a guest at a Riu Palace you could eat and drink at ANY of their Hotels ANYWHERE. ( You just had to get yourself there)

Well This as far as Dominican Republic is concerned is NOT the case. We booked a Junior Suite at Riu Palace Macao, assuming that we would have the full use of the NEW Riu Palace PuntaCana Next door . This is NOT the case, RiuPalace Punta Cana strickly OFF Limits.

Riu Palace Macao is NOT a Palace and should be reclassified as a Standard Class Riu and Not a PALACE.

Accomodation is Tired, Food is limited , and there are no air conditioned public areas whatsoever. Service is still Good.

WE paid and moved into the Riu Palace Punta Cana where our expectations of Riu standards were fully met. If you are going to Dominican you will struggle to beat the Riu Palace Puna Can. Do not go for any of the others.

You Have Been Warned!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank flybiggles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 May 2010

We had a great trip to the Macao. When Printing my departure pass 5/19 with US Airways and trying to pay my and four others bag fee the site pulldown said fee waived. Great news but not true, Upon arrival at airport had to pay $160 and have had 0 luck trying to resolve issue with US Air. Did anyone have similar problem and were you able to work it out with US Air?

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with family
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Thank jfxRaleighNC
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 Macao

Address: Playa Arena Gorda | Punta Cana, Punta Cana 35100, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#19 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#37 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#40 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: £137 - £328 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Macao 4*
Number of rooms: 364
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana. * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. * Within the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Punta Cana, Riu Palace Bavaro, Riu Naiboa and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu. * The Splash Water World will be opened from 1st November 2016 * 3-storey building. Colonial style architecture. * Surrounded by 30,000 m2 / 36,000 sq. yards of palm groves alongside the beach. 50 km / 31 miles from Higey. 200 m / 660 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 Palace Macao Hotel Punta Cana
Riu Palace Macao Punta Cana
Riu Palace Punta Cana
Rui Palace Punta Cana

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