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Reviews (6,434)
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All reviewscolonial restaurantdeluxe roomswim up barpalm treescaribbean streetevery other daythomson repssteakmain restaurantmama juanamini bardominican republicsmaller poolentertainment staffoutback safaribeautiful beachmain pool
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Reviewed 2 February 2012

Since my 2 girlfriends and myself had such a great time at the Bambu last April, we decided to return and were able to go for an 11 day trip.
It was like going home!!! Got into our room, threw on the suits and ventured to the pool bar where Junior comes out from around the bar takes my hands and says "Hola, I remember you. Do you remember me?" They are such a fun, fun bunch of people --Junior, Victor, Pasquale, George, Milayas and took really good care of us.
We had a bigger room this time, which was helpful, clean and always well stocked. We had some cool nights, so called and requested extra blankets and pillows and were taken care of asap.
Checkin people are amazing and helpful!!! Try to go down with $1 american bills (to tip if you wish and when you hear what their monthly wage is and see how hard and what long hours they work, you won't regret it).
Restaurant staff are incredibly friendly and helpful as well. Of course our favourite is Wilken who is outside at the buffet for lunch and dinner. Breakfeast, lunch and dinner at the buffet is a huge assortment of food that is always hot, being replenished regularly and for the most part very, very good. Watch the smile on the omelet guys face when you tip him a $1 for the most delicious and well cooked omelet. We also enjoyed and received great service from Franklin, Mendes and Samuel, so shout out to them too.
The entertainment crew are the hardest working of the bunch!!! They go around each day pumping everyone up, stopping for a chat as they smile and dance their way thru their days.
David and his crew of Chris Rock, Kathy, Obama, Joel, Machine, Carmelo, Romeo, etc do such a good job. We would watch the kids run up to them each day, so you know they are good people if your children are happy to see them and want to spend time with them.
Funnest group of guys EVER are at The Plaza in the evening!! Luis Miguel, Gregory, Edward, Tavares, Moses, Alexander, Marino, Carlos, Juan Carlos, are a fast moving, friendly, animated group of guys. We took a 10 minute video of them our last night and hope to post it on utube as it is hilarious.
The evening shows are ok, some better than others, with the Michael Jackson show being the best. Remember, this is the same group of entertainment crew that you saw out by the pool from 9am-1pm, 3-5ish that are back again from 8ish - 11ish.
The pool is clean, lots of beach chairs, fresh towels daily. The beach is so close by again with lots of chairs and the best damn beach you will find anywhere. Water was warm and very inviting.
Can't say enough good about this place. Yes of course you can find better for more bucks, but you will not find a more friendlier, fun, more entertaining, accommodating hotel with gorgeous beach and weather!! Im back in April with same group of girls, my daughter, her friend and 2 people from England that we met last year there and I CAN'T WAIT!!!!

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with friends
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16  Thank Tiffanis123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2012

My husband and I stayed at Riu Bambu January 21 - 28, along with our 3 small children. We had a family room, which was very convenient, as it offered us a huge bed, a fold out couch for our 4 year old, and 2 pack'n'plays for our youngest kids. The hotel is very clean, and the staff was very friendly (most staff stopped to give our children "hi-fives", and chat with them). The food was great, and a good variety was offered at every meal. We never had an issue feeding even the pickiest of our kids. RIU offers a lovely promenade within the resort, which runs along the beach -- great for taking a romantic walk, or putting kids down to sleep in the stroller. We also utilized the services of a staff photographer to take some professional pictures of our family on the beach, and I was extremely happy with the results (this was not a part of the all-inclusive package, but definitely worth the extra money).

Room Tip: Try to ask for a room closer to the beach.
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank irishechka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2012

A couple girlfriends and I went in December. We read the reviews, some good and some bad, but had an open mind. The beach was beautiful. Chairs were always available and you never needed to get up at the crack of dawn to reserve them with your towel. We didn't spend any time at the pool but it appeared fun. The evening shows were entertaining. The disco was fun too other than on our last night as it was dead. The food on the other hand was crap:( I didn't think I was that picky but I was on this vacation. I survived on fries and pizza. I've stayed at the Riu meringue in Puerto Plata and the food was wonderful. Too bad the Riu's aren't consistent. The room service was horrible too. We had to get our own toilet paper and they didn't restock the fridge. The toilet that kept running was a little annoying too. The walk along the beach to the market was lovely and the weather cooperated for the most part. We had an afternoon of rain and a couple of sunshowers. There was lots of hot sun and a beautiful ocean breeze:)

  • Stayed: December 2011
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5  Thank Tam140
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2012

We stayed at the Riu Bambu for a week in the middle of January and it was wonderful.

Rooms
After a short trip from the airport we were immediatley checked in. When we got to our room it was clean and well stocked. It had 3 liters of water for us to drink, 2 bottles of pepsi and soda water, and one bottle of 7 up and diet pepsi. Along with 2 cans of beer and the booze dispenspers. The bathroom was clean and had handsoap shampoo and body wash. However conditioner is not provided so I would advise bringing some. If you are from America don't bother bringing your blow dryer or flat iorns because they dont have outlets for them. There is a safe in the rooms in case you are worried about anything getting stolen. Our safe was broken and we asked for someone to fix it on several occasions and no one ever showed up. We waited two hours and finally said skrew it. The rooms were of average quality but we didn't go to the Dominican to spend time in our room so it was fine.

Food & Drink:)
The main buffet had a huge variety of food. Breakfast was average with fruit, cereal, pasteries, eggs, meat, pancakes, and much more. I thought the meat looked suspect so I didn't eat any. But they had an omlet station that I enjoyed every morning. Also, they do have coffee, you just have to ask your waiter for it and they will leave you a pot. I went the first three mornings without coffee because my waiter did not offer it. The lunch buffet was good with burgers, hotdogs, chicken, pizza, french fries, fruit and much more. However, the lunch at the buffet by the pool is in an open restaraunt with no walls, so I would suggest eating there when they first open. We went at three one day, and there were flies all over the food and birds all over. The dinner buffet was ok. My boyfriend is a picky eater and didn't like much. I however, found something new and delicious to try every day. We tried all 3 of the "A la carte" restaraunts. The chineese food was good, but made me sick and the other two were very dissapointing. As for the drinks, I can't complain. I'm a beer girl and enjoyed the interesting cocktails that the bartenders made for me.

The Beach
This is what made our thrip! The ocean was amazing! The venders were slighly annoying but also very helpfull. We spent 8 hours a day just watching the ocean and swimming and loved it. Also there are guys that go around and sell coconuts for $3 and put rum in them, super nummy. It was not that hot when we went. And we never got sun burnt.

Day trip to Sonama Island
We did one day trip and it was amazing. We drank all day got to see more of the Dominican and see the Caribean. The food and drinks were fantastic, we even bought a video of the excursion. I would strongly recomend it.

Overall
If you are going on a lovers get away, this place is great bang for the buck. The rooms and food are average, but the atmosphere and beach are amazing. Also because this is a "child friendly" resort I was worried about a bunch of kids crying. But overall they were very behaved. All of the bartenders were awesome and the place was very beautiful. Although my review may not sound good, I had a fantastic time, it is harder to pin point the things that were great, but I would go back again.

Helpfull hint; for all you cigar lovers, don't buy them off of the venders at the beach. They are fakes. Unless you don't care about quality.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank Amber W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 January 2012

My Husband and I stayed at the Riu from 11th - 25th January and the rooms are ok we were quite near the actual reception which was good 1905 ask for this room / block.
Rooms are ok really annoying maid turns all electric off each day(despite leaving a note asking not to and tip!!) so had to keep re setting clock etc thease rooms really need Tea / Coffee making facilities and also more plug sockets we had one miles from mirror which was a real pain with hair straightners and as other reports beds are really hard. Bathroom small ish and bath very small the rooms lack luxury. Mini Bar topped up every two days.
All the staff are really friendly and tips help but are not expected food ok but very very repative and the Coffee is awaful one person I met took to getting a free bus that runs to a Shopping Mall to buy a proper Coffee every day!! We did all restaraunts and Asian far by the best with Italian close second steak house great steak rubbish location starter etc and why thease Restaraunts lets screaming kids in at 8.30 sitting I dont know
The beach is lovely / clean and easy to get a bed as was the pool on most days. Also think that it is an issue that the other hotels on Riu site can use Bambu for Breckfast/lunch/ drinks /pool but Bambu Guests are the poor reation and as our Rep put it at welcome meeting you can go and look in other Hotels only
My problem with the Riu is that it is not the high star rating given by either the Riu or in our case Thomson and I can only liken it to Butlins in the Sun !! I love the Dominican and the place and will be going back next year but to the Riu Palace next door which when you look at it looks so much nicer and up market
Did a couple of trips Outback Safari is best Trip I have ever done going into School and a Dominican home makes you realise how little people have Top tip take loads of pencils colouring books and rubbers and also freebie shower gels etc given in room the Children are so gratefull.When you see the Kids faces over being given a pencil it is so humbling also they share rubbers that are on strings so take some. You Have to Do This Trip

We also went to Catalinia Island not the best for me but for Divers great long day 12 hours from time you leave to time you return. For shopping walk along beach past other Riu's and Iberstar interesting shops that are shacks on the beach where bartering is essential interesting that Holiday Reps neglect to tell you about this place and try to sell the Shoping Trip instead.

Hubby is a Padi Diver and was very impressed with the Dive School and the guys that ran it he did 12 dives all together also found out when we were there that if you are a Padi Diver and Travel with Thomson you can take an additional 5 kg of luggage which Hubby was not happy about as we had advised Travel Agent of intent to Dive and they didnt tell him this so he did not take all equipment even Rep on Resort had to check so Divers out there read small print of holiday docs as you can certainly with Thomson have additional weight.

Airport no problems a little delay coming back but on the whole good Airport, was however annoyed with Thomson as booked premium ecnomy that means you board first and they just opened the gate and it was a free for all as I have walking difficulties this was a problem. Also Thomson give you a date that you can pre book seats and it turned out on this occastion that they opened bookings over a month earlier and would do nothing for me when contacted however based on flight home another letter I think
To conclude if you want a basic ish hotel and have kids and like Butlins you will like the Riu Bambu if you are a couple pay the extra and go to the Palace whoever you are take the Pencils and rubbers and do the Safari Trip

Room Tip: 1905 Near but not to near to Reception / Pool etc
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Michele197002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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