by Hilarey Wojtowicz
The beachfront Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica offers families all-inclusive rates with breathtaking views in an exotic location. Stay in one of the 538 guestrooms or suites across six floors, each equipped with complimentary Wi-Fi, flat-screen TV’s and free mini-bar with snacks and refreshments, restocked daily. The resort has four pools, a separate children’s pool and beach access. There is a kids club for children ages 4 to 12, along with a playground. Teens and adults can enjoy the complimentary water sports, like windsurfing, kayaking and snorkeling, the tennis courts and the free introductory scuba lesson in the pool. There is also a night club and casino for adults.
The resort has five onsite eateries, each with a different international cuisine. Enjoy Krystal, a fusion restaurant with multiple flavors, Tokio for Japanese dishes, L’Anfora for Italian, Papagayo for steak and other grilled delicacies, or the Capuchino Cafe for dessert and ice cream. There are also four bars for adults and room service is available 24 hours a day.
Our Editor Loves
- Beachfront location
- Children's swimming pool and playground
- All-inclusive rates for families
- All Inclusive Rates
- Horse Back Riding
- Water Sports
- Children Programs
- Kids' Pool
- Onsite Dining
This was our 4th time staying at the Riu Palace in Costa Rica. First and foremost, if you are able to find something to complain about, you should probably just stop taking vacations and stay home. Seriously.....you're in Central America! Things are simply different there. If you cant understand that, stay in England or the USA or wherever you come from.
We had 6 rooms spread all over the resort and everyone loved their accommodations. This hotel opened in November of 2012. We know this because we spent our honeymoon here the week they opened. Not much has changed. The high humidity takes its toll on things and the Palace has done a very good job of keeping the appearance up to par. We are all early eaters and tend to wake up early, eat breakfast early and have dinner between 6 and 7pm. Not once did we have to wait in line for the buffet or restaurants. (For reference, our stay was from November 2nd to the 9th). We simply showed up between 6 and 7pm and were sat immediately. Our group tried all of the specialty restaurants and the food was very good.
Service at the Palace is still top notch! Cristina at the front desk is a credit to the hotel!
Our group tried several excursions all booked through Luis Solutions down by the beach. As stated, this was our 4th time visiting and we use Luis exclusively. He is fantastic!! His prices are very food and he goes out of his way to make your adventures special! I HIGHLY recommend taking his "Nature Expedition". We saw sloths, crocodiles, vipers, frogs and all manor of birds...all in their natural environment and not behind a cage. An all day event, we went rafting, waterfall exploring and sight seeing in the rainforest for the same price that the Diamante echo park charges for a full day. And ours included an authentic Costa Rican lunch.
A few of us also went on a 3/4 day fishing trip with Luis. I am a fairly experienced fisherman and the boat Luis put us on was outstanding! Those guys really knew what they were doing and were able to put me on a 60 grouper which we landed. We took half back to the resort and had a feast!! Look for the Pittsburg Steelers flag and little white dog (Mikey) and you'll find Luis!! Also.....his friend Carolina is the best massage therapist on the beach! Our group kept her busy all week. Do yourself a favor and go find her!! I am posting a picture of the two of them...seriously.....they will make your vacation that much better (especially if you tell them Shane and Terri sent you).
In short....the hotel is fantastic, the country and her people are fantastic and unless you're a pain in the butt....dont hesitate!
My wife and I spent 5 days at Riu Palace in mid-November as part of our honeymoon trip and loved it. The staff here was very friendly and fun, especially around the pool area. By the time we left we were on first name basis with several staff and bartenders. Walter, Eduardo, Luis, Junior, Victor and Anthony, just to name a few who were excellent people who made our stay that much more enjoyable.
There are plenty of activities around the pool bar throughout the day for adults to enjoy, different games, contests, dancing lessons, etc. Every night, there is a show in the Melody area which are well done. We saw a couple including the Michael Jackson experience.
We enjoyed the food options throughout the resort. The buffet at Arenal restaurant was always loaded with great options each day. I looked forward to meals throughout.
The rooms were nice. Nothing crazy on the inside. We had a balcony jacuzzi room, which we only used once, but was awesome. We also had a jet tub in our room which we never used. The shower was large and the views from the balcony were nice of the pool, landscaped grounds and an ocean view.
On the resort, you will see many different types of lizards from small to large, beautiful birds, devil rays leaping out of the water on the beach and howler moneys in the forest around the property.
Overall, we had an excellent time at Riu Palace. The all inclusive experience was all we could have hoped for and the people made it truly memorable.