We were greeted upon arrival at Riu Palace Bavaro with high-fives and tropical drinks. Check-in was quick, which was great because we couldn’t wait to get to the beach. Great start to the vacation!
Our room was very modern with great amenities: comfortable king size bed, flat screen tv, in-room Jacuzzi, rain shower (the best!), mini-bar with wall mounted liquor dispenser for rum/vodka/gin/scotch. From the balcony there was a striking view of the resort with the Caribbean Sea on the horizon. We got into a habit of ordering room service for snacks and having a few drinks on the balcony after the sun went down before we’d head out for dinner.
The Beach…Oh man… what a beach! I’ve often visited resorts where the beach was very small, or a little rocky for my taste, but this beach is huge with fine sand. Instead of having palapas for shade, there are towering palm trees that provide ample shade if you want to lounge all day without worrying too much about the sun. On our 3rd day at the resort, we fell asleep under the palms and didn’t leave the beach until the sun went down. It was as close as you can get to a perfect beach day. The Caribbean Sea was quite warm and we would swim or float around for an hour each day. It was peaceful.
The Pools … We spent a lot of our time at the “Taino” pool sitting in the whirlpool or laying on the water loungers. We never had to get up early to reserve a chair and there was always space at the swim-up bar to get a drink. The pool was surrounded by about a dozen canopy beds where you could take a mid-day nap while enjoying the breeze and Caribbean music. In resort, a lot of times the pool is too noisy and crowded for me; this was serene and perfect.
The Coffee-Shop … We’re city dwellers accustomed to having several café’s within a few blocks walk at all times. It’s a bit of an essential part of my weekend morning routine. It was exciting that Riu Palace Bavaro had their own coffee shop “Cappuccino” where they had a menu of coffee drinks and delicious little pastries. I recommend the macchiato with a couple shots of Irish whiskey.
The Restaurants … Riu Palace Bavaro has 5 restaurants to choose from. We ate breakfast each morning at their international buffet “The Montecristo.” We particularly enjoyed the fresh fruits, breads/meats/cheeses, and the omelet making station. One evening we also enjoyed dinner there with some champagne and Caribbean musicians performing table-side. We made reservations our 3rd night for the a la carte fusion restaurant “Krystal” where we were greeted with champagne and given a tableside bucket with libations. The meal was served in 4 courses. We had for openers: Beet Gazpacho, Peanut Brittle, Ahi Tuna; Appetizers: Dome of Salmon, Summer Vegetable Rolls, Beef Carpaccio; Main course: Red Snapper, Grilled Shrimp with Vegetables; Dessert: Apple Pie a la mode, Chocolate Truffles with a Raspberry Meringue Macaroon. I’d definitely recommend eating there.
The Casino… We were given $40 in coupons to gamble at the casino in the Riu Palace Macao, but it seemed we used up all of our luck on the beautiful beach weather.
The Bars … Our favorite bar at the resort was “The Daiquiri” (Lobby Bar) where we would spend most evenings drinking dirty martini’s made by Elise. We tried many of the specialty drinks including blanc & mint martinis, mumbumbas (Caribbean mudslide), caprinhas, mojitos and of course piña coladas. The “Taino” swim-up bar served us well at the pool and the beach. I recommend having a gin & tonic on the beach as it keeps you feeling much better than the sugary drinks.