Our vacation January 16-22, 2016 to the Riu Palace Bavaro in the Dominican Republic was not enjoyable and we were not compensated or helped with the unacceptable situations. When we booked the vacation we were looking forward to a beautiful, peaceful and all inclusive vacation which we did not receive.
It all started upon arrival to the Dominican Republic. We booked the hotel shuttle through hotelbeds. Finding our shuttle was close to near impossible. We went to the kiosk and was told which bus to find out of a ton of buses and people who didn’t speak english to help us. It took over an hour to finally find someone who could call a shuttle to pick us up. The shuttle driver almost crashed many times speeding and weaving through traffic in order to get us to our hotel as quick as possible, rather than being concerned about our safety.
When we arrived at the hotel the bell boy took our bags up to our VIP room we paid for. He stood in our room waiting for a tip. I did not have change and since the website said all gratituties were included was not prepared to tip. However the next day I did get change and gave him a tip. I was confused and asked the front desk about tipping and was told it was not included even thought it was on the website. The day before we left, the director Miguel told me it was included and was up to our discretion.
Our first room was not very clean, looked run down, there was hair on the bed, floors were dirty, the sinks overflowed that the cleaning ladies removed the stopper, mini bar was not stocked, in fact there was a open bottle of tonic water in the fridge, we paid for a ocean view room and could barely see any water and the cards to order in room breakfast were missing. But that was not the main issues. The deadbolt on the door did not lock and the worst was the thermostat was broken so the room did not get above 63 degrees. So we felt unsafe at night and absolutely freezing to the point I couldn't sleep. I made the hotel manager Enrique aware of the situation and he sent a supervisor to check on the issues. After confirmation, he said he can move our rooms but not until the next day. Therefore, we were forced to sleep in that room for another night. In addition, they did not attempt to fix the issues with the room which was a VIP room we paid for. When I asked for be upgraded if they didn’t have a comparable room, I was told he didn’t have anything available even though the hotel was very quiet and I later found out from the director Miguel that Enrique could have assisted us with an upgrade but chose not to and left us in that room.
The next day we moved our room without any help from the hotel. The were no elevators and both rooms were on the 3rd floor. The next room had issues also. The upper rain shower was broken and sprayed water everywhere, they had painters above us who were scrapping pain on us as were sat on our balcony. When I spoke to Enrique again he said “this doesn’t happen. I have many customers who don’t have problems like this.” He blamed us even though all the problems were confirmed by their supervisors. They had to fix our shower and ask the painters to stop scrapping paint on our balcony. Again no compensation was made. When my husband went back to the room one day, there were 5 painters in our room doing our balcony with our room door propped open. We had no notice of painting being done on our balcony or wet paint signs. Plus our room was open to whom even wanted to come in. Nelson the manager said we are just painting, this happens and dismissed our concerns.
I feel the hotel was oversold online. The casino was extremely small and dirty. The wifi didn’t work most of the time. The only time I was able to login repeatedly was on the balcony in my room and the lobby. Free wifi was also marketed aggressively the same as all inclusive on the hotel website where I booked my vacation. It was marketed as one of the newest hotels and was very run down. I was treated with disrespect by the staff. I do not speak Spanish but can understand it enough to hear that I was made fun of by the casino hosts for not being able to have a conversation with them. We tried to use the other hotel cafes which were supposed to be included only to be turned down therefore were forced to only use the amenities in our hotel. The restaurants only had a few options and the food was horrible forcing us to eat in the buffet for most meals. One restaurant caused actually me to have a severe food allergy reaction. I was recovering from tooth pain and asked for ibuprofen or Aleve. They understood at the front desk what I was asking for and said they don’t have a shop that carried medicine. So they called the pharmacy and tried to charge me $22. The next day I found the same amount of Aleve in their gift shop with many other medications for $8. So I felt conned and lied to.
Overall the vacation was absolutely horrible. From the room experiences, customer service, food, managers attitudes; I was left very disappointed. The evening before we left I was advised to file a report with corporate and was able to speak to the director of the hotel named Miguel. He said corporate should rectify this terrible experience and I agree. I was also told that this situation and report was submitted to corporate on January 22nd but have not heard anything yet even though I was told corporate would contact me.
Reason of review: Poor customer service.
Monetary Loss: $2500.
Preferred solution: Full refund.
I didn't like: Customer service, Rooms, Food, Management.