ClubHotel Riu Merengue
59 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Riu Merengue pictures & Photos at ...
"We stayed at the RIU Merengue on Dec 08-15, 2003. We took all 3 of our boy and had a blast. We posted our photos at ... This is an excellent resort. We recoment it to all. 2 thumbs up!!!"
- Travel date: Fri 7th of March 2003
Had a great time.
"My boyfriend and I just returned on the 28th of January. The resort was very nice,however we were disappointed with the color of the water, and the pool was not much to look at. The food was ok but plenty of it. We thought the service was great and the people who worked there were fun to be around. We would return again onlt if we got a great deal in price."
- Travel date: Thu 6th of March 2003
"I took my wife there on vacation and we had a great time. Love the food, drinks and activities. I have seen better beaches, but the overall experience was fantastic. I loved the attention and service we received from the staff. Right now we are planning another trip there. I can't wait to go back."
- Travel date: Wed 5th of March 2003
Great Time with Two Young Children
"We used this site extensively prior to visiting. All the reviews and tips were so helpful we're compelled to offer our opinion. Everyone travels with different expectations, for us, we wanted a fun resort with plenty of activity, good food, great weather and friendly service. We brought our two sons ages 4 and 3, so our expectations were high. We visited Feb. 20 thru 27I'll break this down into digestable pieces:The Room The rooms were of adequate size and very clean. Maid service was prompt and cleaned everyday. The balcony was large and great for relaxing before dinner or just before bedtime. The beds left a lot to be desired, but we all managed. There's really is nothing like your own bed where ever you go. Remember the middle two digits are your villa number, not the first two or last two. With room number 1138, we had initally thought we had villa 38 by the tennis courts, bummer....but after inquiring we had villa 13, first villa before the Bachata and right on the beach (garden view), just what we had asked for The Food Despite a few negative reviews of the food on the site, don't be too persuaded by them. There was plenty of variety and whatever we had was very good. For the price, I really don't know what more you'd ask for. My wife and I did the Ala Carte one evening at the Steakhouse at the Bachata. Other than the white wine (it was pretty bad) and the beef selection on the Grill Plate, I found nothing to complain about. One reviewer wrote that there is not any good beef in the Dominican, I whole heartedly agree. Perhaps knowing that before heading down lowered my expectations so I was not terribly dissapointed. The pork in the Dominican, however, more than makes up for it. The GroundsBeautiful, gardnesque and what you'd hope for in a tropical environment. The gardneners were working everyday to keep it clean. The main buidlings, bar areas and eating areas were spacious. The Plaza Bar was close to the beach with a large veranda and patio. The Pools The Bachata pool was much larger, had interesting shapes and a swim-up bar. There was much more space than the Merengue pool. Aesthetically, the Merengue pool offered very little. It was square and considerable smaller than the Bachata. However, the size made it more intimate with entertainment and other guests. We ended up spending most of our time there. No matter what the activity, it was as if everyone was involved. In short, it was hoppin', especially in the afternoon. For this, the Bachata could not compare. It was too large. If you wanted to relax and keep to yourself, the Bachata was perfect. If you want a party, go to the Merengue. Animation Team, Babysitting and Kids ClubAll of it Fantastic! It took our kids a few days to adjust to all the activities (due primarily to their age), but they caught on and had a wonderful time. By the last night they were dancing on stage and playing games with Big Mama and all the friends they met at the pool. We were a bit apprehensive leaving them alone, but a few hours with Big Mama changed all that. She's wonderful with kids. All the children respected her, listened to her and loved her...even when she disciplined them. She's got the touch.We used the free babysitting service for out night at the Steakhouse. Maxxis (who was due anyday with her second child) was on time, gentle and had the perfect demeanor. We left our kids with no fanfare. We told them they'd have a sitter so they were prepared, but Maxxis made it very easy. Franky Boy and crew (Kelvin, Johnny Bravo, Alex, Elisabeth, Julio, etc.) were wonderful. They encouraged you to participate in the days events, but never pushy. They were the most pleasant hosts and were the source of all the "good vibes" at the resort and passed it on to others. They threw a terrific Manager's poolside BBQ -great food!!! and a lively Beach Party at night and another one the next day in the afternoon. One afternoon there was a Coco Party on the beach which featured fresh Dominican fruits and drinking from live coconuts! The most lively evening was the Caribbean Street Party-this was fantastic, the shops were open late, bands playing, children dancing in street a beverage tent,music and both ends of the street. It was the last thing I expected to see at a resort. It was a very pleasant suprise.The BeachThe beach at Punta Cana was superior to Puerta Plata. For us, however, it was not a big deal, the water was warm, the waves were fun, there was a Bay at the far end of the Bachata that wasn't so windy (the kids loved that) and it by far beats anything here in the midwest.Bottom LineWe had a great time. It is always unnerving traveling with kids and the Merengue made it easy.We'll be back in 2004! Without a doubt."
- Travel date: Mon 3rd of March 2003
"What a fabulous week we had at the Riu Merengue. We also visited the Bachata and the Mambo. Loved the swim up bar at the Bachata. The food was exceptional. Our favourite was the steak dinner at the Grill House. It was so tender, melted like butter. The theme night, Chinese food, was also exceptional. Best spring rolls I have ever eaten. The staff was superb. The rooms were very clean. Loved the beach party and the Caribbean night. Karaoke night was awesome. The Manger's lunch with island drinks served in fresh fruit was terrific. I certainly would not hesitate to go back. The weather was also superb. Hot, hot, hot."
- Travel date: Sat 1st of March 2003
"We arrived in a shower of rain and were immediately greeted with large umberellas and taken to our accomodation. It seemed like a tropical paridise in the evening. The room was very spacious and clean. Two double beds greeted us like a giant bed. Fly nets at the windows and air conditioning made it the perfect retreat when it got too hot outside especially with all the cool drinks in the mini bar. We went to dinner and were greeted with a room full of food from all nations. The awful thing was that you had to choose from such a selection. As we were there for a wedding we booked into the ala carte restaurant the night of the wedding. A wedding cake was produced. We did feel that the buffet restaurant meals gave a better selection. the whole place was very clean and tidy. The cleanliness of the whole complex was to be admired. The selection of drinks at the bar was also very impressive. Measures were on the large size especially for daytime sunbathing. Water was available at all times around the pool and near the bar. We went on the monster truck safari and white water rafting. Both trips were very good stopping at a lagoon type place to swim on the way back from the safari. The rafting was an exhilerating experience. Despite having a knee problem I was still able to go and the people in charge of the raft made sure that I was ok all the time and that I didn't fall out. This had been the best holiday I had ever had and can't wait to go back again."
- Travel date: Sun 23rd of February 2003
Riu Merengue - A Must Visit
"Real value for the $, my wife and I enjoyed a much needed break from the cold and day to day life, the Riu Merengue has superior food, endless drinks and a quite/fun tropical atmosphere. Evenings can be spent either in romantic or party mode...20 mini stores were great for shopping. Native carvings were overpriced, always offer 40% of asking price to start at, hang tuff and settle for 1/2or less. recommend the outack safari trip, worth every penny. take along 2 large mugs (insulated) for drinks, 8 0z plastic cup for the beach and pool can cause excessive foot wear for drinkers. Staff are second to none, take good used summer clothing for native children , books , pens and pencils. Outback tour leader will distribute. Tipping is not required but a few US $ goes along way , considering they only make $0.50 /hr."
- Travel date: Mon 17th of February 2003
Whoopah! Amazing Resort and Vacation!
"What a great week I had with my girlfriend at the Riu Riulette. We bought a last minute deal from the internet and a stipulation in our package was that we would find out which hotel out of the three (Mambo, Merengue and Bachata) we were staying at when we arrive at Puerto Plata airport! Reading some of the previous reviews, I was concerned about which would be the best to go to and I think we did get in the best, which was the Riu Merengue! Some of the reasons why is was the best: Location! it was the hotel in between the mambo and bachata so it was easy access to both hotels. it was also the best for access to caribbean street for shopping, the disco, not to far from the watersports beach which was at the bachata, and not as crowded or uppity as the bachata crowd. The food was definitely above average, there was a huge selection for every meal so if there was something you didn't like, you would find something you loved with no problem. Great salad bar with smoked salmon, lots of fresh fruit (Amy had Chinola - passionfruit - with honey at every meal!) and lots of meats. Our favs were the ribs, fish fillets, leg of lamb, veal in stew, various seafood dishes. Against our better judgement, we decided to go to the a la Carte dinner at the Mediterranean Restaurant, which is basically the Bachata snack restaurant with fancy table cloths. The food, which was terribly disappointing, took an hour to come to the table. The meal was not remotely worth the trouble of waiting in line that morning to make the reservation, and waiting until 8:45 that night to eat our crappy dinner!! My advice, stick to the buffet!!! The room was terrific, granite bathroom counter, large bed, cable tv, huge balcony, but the peice de resistance was the minibar that was included in the AI. Big jug of water and bottles of coke and a liquor dispenser was great. Also, there is a safe in the closet so we felt that our valuables were secure throughout our stay. The staff were very courteous and friendly, everyone you met would greet you with "Hola" and I guess I got some special treatment since the Dominicans don't see to many Chinese guys. The bartenders were always great and work pretty hard to make awesome drinks for so many people. Our favs were the Mojitos (rum, tonic, lime, sugar and fresh mint leaves) and banana mamas! Cappuccinos were also terrific at the Plaza Bar near the beach! The shows were usually entertaining, especially when they use the hotel guests as contestants. They have a different show every night for three hotels so some of them may not be as entertaining as others, but hey, these are enthusiastic dominicans who get payed very little for the effort they put in. We had a blast at the disco, celebrating the b-day of some friends from Brighton that we met during our snorkel trip. The beach was a little disappointing since it was quite windy during the week we were there (early Feb 2003) and the water was wavey and turbid, so snorkelling is not great near the beach. Also, there are sharp bits of coral, shells, urchins, etc so wear wet shoes. We bought ours on Caribbean St for 10 US each, and they were worth it. Watersports, that were included in the AI, were pretty fun. There is a bay in which you can do kayaking, paddleboating, windsurfing, and sunfish sailing. Don't bother renting snorkels there, since they all suck. Its like breathing through a leaky straw. And avoid the snorkel tour the hotel offers. You have to take a 45 min boat ride to swim in two areas of Sosua Beach for 20 mins each, which by my opinion, were pretty decrepid reefs but lots of great fish. The ride back was even worse since it was against the current and we were battling 6m swells. My gf thought we were sunk and I would have been fearing for my life as well if I wasn't concentrating on keeping my breakfast down. But alas, with this advice, you will avoid this and go on the much more fun trip to Puerto Plata and Sosua through the Sunquest reps. It was the same price as the snorkel trip (35 US) but it included a great day in town with visits to the rum factory, amber museum, terrific buffet lunch at a local pizzeria, and then...2 hours at Sosua Beach!! This is a must-do day trip since you get some good bargains at the shops in town and you get to snorkel at your leisure at Sosua. The tour guide was great and everyone felt secure to leave their valuables on the bus during each stop. To sum up, our trip was pretty fantastic. Every aspect was great, including the warm breezy weather we had all week. The Dominican people, despite living in a developing nation ravaged by poverty, crime and political corruption, are extremely cheerful and full of life. I recommend this resort and this country based on the experience my gf and I had over the last week."
- Travel date: Thu 13th of February 2003
"Just arrived home from a week at the RIU Merengue. Absolutely, bar-none the best holiday we have ever taken. The hotel is absolutely beautiful, and we were provided with a well-situated room facing the courtyard. The room was absolutely spotless, and barring a small issue with a TV not working (was fixed in minutes when I called). I couldn't find a single thing to complain about. There is something seriously wrong if you can't enjoy yourself at this resort. We tried the Dominican and Steakhouse A La Carte restaurants, I recommend the Steakhouse (order your steak a little on the rare side!). There was absolutely nothing wrong with the main restaurant, and there was plenty of selection of fish, seafood, as well as chicken, beef, veal and the like. Even had lobster and mussels one night... fabulous. I have already begun to plan a return trip for next year. The staff are remarkable... nothing.. absolutely nothing was a problem... and they bent over backward to be helpful. One last thing... the guests were primarily canadians and europeans. The Bachata had more Americans and you could definitely tell a difference. Nice hotel, but way more drunken people and general rowdiness. Overall a terrific holiday... and I would recommend to anyone looking for a great getaway. Good value for the money."
- Travel date: Wed 12th of February 2003
"It was great!!! my family and I went down there. My husband and I got married there in the gazabo. It was very beautiful and the pictures are great!!! the wedding cake wasn't the greatest but very pretty. We went in March 2002, it is musty and nothing dries, it did smell like buring plastic. but other then that was good. the staff is all very frendly. If you do go on adventures don't do the catamaran, everyone was sick. It was the day after the wedding and wasn't worth the $75 US or whatever the price is. If anone is getting married there fell free to e-mail me! Jen"
- Travel date: Mon 10th of February 2003
"Spent a great two weeks at the Rui merengue in June 2010. Found it to be a wonderful location with very friendly helpful hardworking staff. The drink and food was good in my view as well. The room although not exactly the Hilton was comfortable,clean and more than adequate for our holiday,but especially liked the balcony due to being a floor up and great to sit and relax on with a drink in the evening. I'd agree to an extent the thing about the locals at weekends,though I'm not prepared to say it was all of them as if you take the time to actually speak etc with them you will find that most are decent people just they're for a weekend break but even they admit that a few are ignorant/spoiling for others around them,but in my view is the minority spoiling things for everyone else. To be fair it was only the second weekend we really noticed vast numbers of locals though I can honestly say it never spoiled my weekend for me. We did a few things on the holiday also like the catamaran at sea which was a great day out and also a taxi tour with the private taxi guys at the main entrance which was totally worth every penny and seen a lot of sights and things you wouldn't normally on a bus tour etc but we had a driver and guide and they are very nice and friendly plus they take your safety to the utmost. I'd recommend this day out totally. All in all a great two weeks in a nice resort and beautiful beach and climate. "
- Travel date: Sat 14th of May 2016
rui merenge ,love it
"june 2011 myself ,husband,3 kids,dad and 2 others spent 2 wks here, all agreed it was a lovely value for money holiday,. slightly spoilt by the locals at wkends ,but over all a really great place .going again soon .oh and there was a delay in the flights for our return journey and after a lot of waiting around in the airport we were putt in another hotel for the night which meant an extra couple of days in a another lovely hotel all inc. so not so bad afterall."
- Travel date: Sat 2nd of March 2013