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“Well Kept Resort With An Active Atmosphere”

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Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
Ranked #68 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Spearfish, South Dakota
Level Contributor
29 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Well Kept Resort With An Active Atmosphere”
Reviewed 15 February 2012

My advice to anyone considering booking this property would be to do it! I know that some of reviews made me a bit hesitant, but we definitely don't regret staying here.

Upon arrival, you're offered a sweet tasting beverage, as well as a relatively smooth check in. Please note that you should definitely bring some sort of paper proof of your reservation. They will ask you for a "voucher", but a copy of your reservation is really what they're looking for. They do keep the sheet, so if you need a copy for yourself, bring another one. Once you arrive in your room, you'll be greeted by a cute towel creation. Ignore the comments made about the musty smell. We never did notice anything worth bringing air freshner for. However, if you do decide to turn the air conditioning off and open your sliding glass door for awhile, there may be a damp feel to the room (you're in a tropical destination after all). I must say that I wish the resort offered electronic key cards instead of a standard key on a huge keychain (by the way don't lose the key, because the keychain has your room number on it). Be sure to utilize the safe in your room too. Don' t take any chances! As far as the beach goes, it's quite lovely with plenty of chairs and activities.Do remember that the pool chairs fill up fast though (sometimes with topless tanners).
If we had to leave any constructive criticism, we would love to request that there would be designated smoking areas for the MANY, MANY smokers who choose to do their nasty habit everywhere and all the time. We couldn't even enjoy the nightly shows due to the overwhelming smoke filled areas (inside and out). We would also like to notate that communication can be a real test. Understandably so, we don't expect perfect English, but I do wish that at least the front desk clerks could communicate a bit better. The Dominican Republic is a huge destination for Canadians who speak English and French, so I would hope that there would be at least a few employees who could accomodate to these two languages.

Finally, tip the help. Most employees make $8.00 a day, so any extra gratuity is appreciated immensely! Note that you are able to tip with US currency.

We had an enjoyable time all around. Keep your expectations in check and look for the good. If you follow this advice, you'll have a great time!

Room Tip: Rooms that overlook the center fountain courtyard (can be noisy at times though).
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank sdgirl077675
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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4,946 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (947)
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English first
Dubuque, Iowa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 February 2012

We stayed here feb 5 thru 12 . Great service , great food , great weather . 5th time in Punta Cana , 2nd time here at the Riu Palace PC , will go back .

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank shoe681
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ct
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 February 2012

the palace is a beautiful hotel and resort. The whole riu complex is beautiful and well kept but it seemed the palace was the nicest. the palace bravaro was a bit too modern looking. the palace is elegant. the staff was friendly and very accomadating. the entertainment staff were especially active and fun. we travel a lot and this is definately one of, if not the best ones. would definately go to a riu resort again and would not mind going back to the palace. any complaints were so minor i wouldn't want to mention them.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank ghan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Terrebonne, Canada
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 February 2012

We stayed for a week at this hotel jan 22 to 29 2012. we actually didn't booked this hotel but due to overbooking we had the pleasant surprise of being moved to this incredible hotel.

Want can we say, spectacular lobby with free wifi, great buffet, firendly and helpfull staff, superb pool, and pristine beach !

You will certainly get what you paid for with many extras we never got at any other hotel we've been like free bar with alcool distributors.

Splendid and carefully groomed landscape ! And cleaness everywhere. Reception staff made sure we were satisfyed and were very helpfull ! Security personnel went on high alert when we lost track of our autistic son for a minute and he was rapidly found back. They even gave him a red baseball cap to make him easyer to locate if ever that happenned again, witch fortunatly didn't happened :)

We weren't exactly moved by the two a la carte restaurant we went. The buffet was so good, we decided to stick with it. Animation was okay, but we preffered to stay in our little bubble and they weren't trying to get into it. Show were average, but there is so many nice places to spend the evening, we didn't cared.

Would we return there ? Certainly !

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
11 Thank Coinopolis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ontario
Level Contributor
61 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 February 2012

This was our first time at this resort but not our first time at a RIU Palace and we certainly weren't disappointed. RIU Palace's are top notch in beauty, service and excellency.
I say "Very Grand" as that is the feeling you get as you drive up and walk around this beautiful resort. It's not so huge that you do a lot of walking, it's just perfect, everything is within a good walking distance. Rooms are lovely, and the desk is always so willing to switch your rooms if your view obstructed etc. We waited a couple of days for this as the hotel was busy during the New Year week. The wait was worth it, we ended up having a courtyard view where it was easy access to walking to dinner or the beach. The only thing I was disappointed in was the weather during that week but that was no fault of the hotel. Rooms were a bit damp and musty but turn on air conditioner and bring a candle. Love the towel animals each day from the house keepers..nice touch with the flowers.
The walk from the beach back to your room is just a glorious feeling, so beautiful and GRAND!!
We will definitely return!

Room Tip: Ask for inward court yard view in the center if possible.
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Tomcat16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chillicothe, OH
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 February 2012

We have stayed at the Riu Palace the past 2 years and are counting the days until we go back for the 3rd time. I have read both good and bad reviews and from my past 2 experiences there is some truth to most of them. In my opinion it just depends on what you want out of a vacation. The beach is the most important part of a vacation for us and you just can't find a beach that is better. We always go with an open mind and try to remember we are in another country so of course it's not going to be like the US. There is a musty smell in the rooms and I noticed it more when we came home & opened luggage. No problem, just wash the clothes & it's gone. Didn't ruin our beautiful vacation. The food is not what we are used to but we all ate more than we should have and no one has ever gotten sick from the food. The entertainment is ok but after 1 night we went to the Riu a couple hotels down & had a great time and will definately go back. The staff is great and always eager to please. They work very long days & still smile & greet you with a friendly hello. If you are considering Riu Palace you should probably decide what is important to you on YOUR vacation. We like a relaxed atmospher and generally this is the case. We usually like the beach during most of the day & then move to the pool later in the afternoon. This works for us so we didn't have the chair issue. I hope this helps you make up your mind.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
9 Thank Tammy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wisconsin
Level Contributor
20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 February 2012

We were a group of 4 couples, ages 62 to 65. We spent one week at the Riu Palace Punta Cana. Our overall experience was very good. The service and staff were excellent, and we found everything to be very clean, despite some previous postings. We were offered to upgrade to a room overlooking the plaza for $35 more a night, but decided against that. Our rooms were midway between the lobby and the beach and we found that to be very convenient. The "U" shaped layout of resort made it very easy to get around, not a ton of walking. Since the pool area was rather sheltered it was much less windy than the beach. It was crowded, so we took turns going down at about 7:30 to save lounge chairs by the pool. This way we were assured 8 chairs together. Drink service was very prompt and delivered by very good looking young men. Yes, ladies do notice!
The food was above average, but seemed to cater more to European tastes. They could do a better job of labeling the salad dressings, and the rolls were always dry. At the Steak specialty restaurant the steak was okay, but the lobster was awful. We also ate at the Brazilian and found that to be hit or miss. Some of us had really great meat and others was overcooked and dry. The Italian was our favorite, but thought it odd to not have Caesar dressing on a Caesar salad. The breakfast buffet offered plenty of choices. The made to order omlettes were excellent, and we loved the fresh donuts. We ate lunch at the place nearest the pool for a few days but soon tired of the same offerings day after day. We took a walk to the Riu Bavaro and had lunch one day. WOW! I advise taking that walk for lunch at least once. So many more choices of everything, paninni sandwiches, many kinds of greens for salad, etc. We also stopped at the Riu Bambu for a drink on the way back. Cute place with a nice little bar right on the beach.
One of our group had an issue with the lock not working on his safe, which was addressed and taken care of promptly. However, we had a problem with trying to cancel a restaurant reservation twice due to change of plans. We were not able to communicate that we wished to cancel our reservation for 8. I understand this is a Spanish speaking country, but when a large percentage of your guests are either American or Canadian, you need to be able to communicate, at least in key areas. So, twice there were tables set for 8 that we tried to cancel.
We took the "sunset" cruise offered through the on site dive shop. It was a nice way to spend a couple of hours. There were to be snacks and drinks. The snacks were just chips and nuts, but the rum was very good, and there was plenty of it. My expectations for the snorkeling part of the trip were pretty low, having read some of the other forums related to snorkeling, or lack thereof, but we were pleasantly surprised. There was a good variety of fish and the water was clear. Of course we returned well before sunset, but we had a good time and thought it was worth the price of $39 each.
The nightly entertainment was not great. The local dancers are very good, but it seems like mostly the same dancing but with different costumes. We watched the show once.
In conclusion, the staff was helpful and very friendly, our rooms and the grounds, restaurants, rest rooms, etc., were spotless, and constantly cleaned. The food was slightly above average on the whole, with some standouts and some misses, mostly due to personal taste, I suppose. We all had a great time and would likely go back to the Riu Punta Cana.

Room Tip: Not many rooms face the ocean. We were on the side facing the Riu Bambu, but with a thick row of ba...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank nubievagabond
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 Punta Cana

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana
Address: Playa de Arena Gorda | Punta Cana - Dominican Republic, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#43 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#44 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#56 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#59 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#61 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#62 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Punta Cana 4*
Number of rooms: 612
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Located on Arena Gorda Beach in Punta Cana * Inside the Riu Resort, along with the Riu Palace Macao, Riu Palace Bavaro, Riu Naiboa hotels and the ClubHotel Riu Bambu * The Splash Water World will be opened from 1st November 2016 * 4-story building * Surrounded by 63,000 m2 / 75,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 40 km / 31 miles from Higuey * 30 km / 19 miles from Punta Cana Intl. Airport Accepted Credit Cards: MasterCard, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Punta Cana Riu Palace
Riu Palace Hotel Punta Cana

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