Having been transferred to the Maspalomas version of the Riu Palace as the Meloneras resort was shut for refurbishment (our usual hotel for Gran Canaria), we had reservations as to whether we would like to stay in the more busy and bustling Playa del Ingles. But we have to say that this holiday was just great.
The hotel, as usual for Riu, was clean and looks good, although the wooden decor was slightly a more dated look than Riu's new purple look at the ClubHotel variant. The rooms were excellent and as usual the team of cleaning staff for the rooms are literally what makes this hotel work. They are outstanding and deserve a lot of praise from the management. Important note and tip: as with all spanish hotel chains the mattresses are so hard. So ask at reception for a Tempur mattress replacement - lovely and comfortable and so much nicer than two weeks lying on a piece of hardboard.
Definately try and get a room between 1066 and 1060 if a sea view is not an important criteria. Although the view of the pool is compromised on these numbers, the balconies are MASSIVE and the sun is there all day right up to 6.30pm during May.
The restaurant was good with pleasant staff. Special mention to the waiter Enrique, who always had a smile and was always on hand. The food was on a weekly rotation, so if staying for more than one week, it can get a little boring. Plenty of it, just the same menus week on week. One BIG gripe however was the fact that, as is usual with Riu, the French, Germans and Italians are catered for with their own style food, the Brits are left to their own devices and once again some nationalities firmly believe that it is their right to push into a queue. But hey ho, nothing unusual there. Also might I suggest to the management that when offering a cheese platter, whilst Canarian cheese is lovely, Bavarian Blue is OK, Parmesan for the Pasta and Brie etc is mandatory, but why no Cheddar! British under-catered for again.
Staff on reception were very pleasant and very helpful. Reception doesn't really cater for the masses and masses, in terms of enough seats for all now requiring WI-FI and once again - come on RIU Management - the Palace is supposed to be a spanish FIVE star hotel experience - WI-FI in the lobby only is a disgrace now and is becoming a very repetitive gripe of many a visitor. Just up the road, the IFA Catalina has WIFI throughout and that is four star. Management, you are missing a trick and seriously you MUST address this matter.
The pool areas were very comfortable indeed and there did seem to be some sunbeds available, even after the germans and french once again stake out at 5.30 to 6am in the morning. The main pool area was very quiet and relaxed whilst the second area was great, especially the jacuzzi beds - this second area seeming to be slightly more for the active swimmer.
The famous dunes white wall has sort of gone (only a small section left) now that the entrance to the dunes is being rebuilt. With the main entrance to the dunes (for all the public) going right through the middle of the hotel complex, this viewpoint has temporarily gone so no white wall photo opportunities. Currently access to the dunes and beach is rather difficult for immobile users but once the rebuild is complete it should be great (white wall sadly missing though).
We booked through Thomson and the transfers to and from the airport were not as good as previous, with a multi language coach employed now instead of a single language coach with an accompanying rep. At the airport it was a free for all and confusion with the new system of pre-checked in bag drops. Thomson (TUI) - this is too much cutting back in costs. However a special mention must go to Scott, the hotel representative, who was exceptional and deserves to go far in the future. Dedicated and always with a smile. A real pleasure to have known.
All in all, this was a good holiday and a good hotel and as regular users of the RIU experience worldwide, we would recommend this to anyone. Just sort out the WIFI - you are missing a trick.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in Playa del Ingles. Next to the Maspalomas sand dunes. 4-Storey building. Colonial-style architecture. 28,000 M2 of subtropical gardens. 800 M from the beach. 2 Km from the city centre. 500 M from various shops. 30 Km from the airport. 50 M from a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Diners ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Palace Maspalomas Hotel Playa Del Ingles
- Hotel Riu Palace Maspalomas Gran Canaria/Playa Del Ingles