I visited the Rui Playa Park from 1st to 4th January 2008 with my husband, sister and brother-in-law, for a little New Year’s R&R.
We’d read mixed reviews before we booked directly with the hotel, but, having stayed at several other Riu properties around the world, decided to give it a go. The hotel cost approx €330 per couple for 3 nights on an all inclusive basis, so wasn’t “cheap” given the current exchange rate, but we were hopeful that the all inclusive experience would mean we would get our money’s worth.
On arrival we were checked in without any hassle at all. There was no champagne to greet us, however we were given our all inclusive bands, and allocated rooms on the same floor quickly. We were told that our rooms contained a safe and given keys to this also. We arrived at around 10:30pm, long after evening food service had finished, but were told that a cold platter had been kept for us and was in the dining room for us to collect when we were ready.
When we got to our rooms these too were quite functional and Travelodge-esque. Unfortunately my sister’s room smelt heavily of smoke (despite the smoking ban in force in Mallorca as in the UK). We each had twin beds pushed together, despite requesting double beds, but were later told that this was standard throughout the hotel.
We dropped out bags and headed straight to the dining room to collect our food. This was quite basic but did the job and consisted of bread, cheese, cold meats and fruit. There was beer and wine on tap in the dining room, together with juice, soda and tea / coffee from a machine. I tried the “juices” and was very disappointed – these all tasted of incredibly weak cordial and were definitely not fruit juices. My sister tried the fizzy drinks – these too tasted weak and tinny, almost like cheap sodastream pop, as if the syrup being pumped into the machine had run out.
Next we headed to the bar. This is where the real disappointment for us started. The boys happily ordered a beer each – Cruzcampo was what was on offer, and they were pleased with this. They were each given a small beer (approx half a pint), which would cost the princely sum of €1.50 to those not staying on an AI basis. My sister and I decided to try a cocktail, so started at the top of the list with a Vodka punch. Sadly, this was pre-mixed from a plastic contained and seemingly contained no vodka. Instead, it tasted EXACTLY like the weak cordial I’d had in the
Not to be deterred, we tried another cocktail – this time a pina colada. This too was horrific, and clearly contained none of the ingredients of a genuine pina colada. Sadly, every other cocktail on the menu was as bad. Each was either watery or tasted like too-strong sunny delight. None contained any fruit “juice”. Sadly the pop dispensers behind the bar were as bad as those in the dining room, so even spirits and mixers weren’t an option.
Similarly the wines weren’t very palatable either. Although I’m no wine buff and certainly not very fussy, these were particularly bad. We asked about whether Baileys, or a local alternative, was available. The bar only had the genuine stuff – charged at €6.50 for a shot. In the end we drank the non-alcoholic slush puppies for most of our stay. Very disappointing.
Later that evening we returned to our rooms, where we discovered that neither of the patio doors in our rooms locked, there were hairs on the floor in the bathroom, and that the sheets on my bed had stains that looked like blood on them. As it was now after midnight and we were exhausted, I reluctantly slept on top of the bed that night with the intention of raising the matter in the morning.
During the night it also became apparent that the walls to the rooms are paper thin. Although not a light sleeper, I was awoken several times by the people in the room next door coughing, or by people moving around in the corridors.
After breakfast the next morning, we came back to the room to find the maid in there, so waited in my sisters room until she had finished. When we went back later, however, the beds had not been made, let alone changed, but we traced the maid and showed her the stains, and she changed the linen immediately.
That day we also reported the problem with the patio doors, and although the receptionist pledged to get someone to look at them, this was never fixed during our stay.
The food during our stay, was OK. We were allocated a table on our arrival and told to use this each mealtime. On a couple of occasions other families were at our table, but as there were plenty of other tables free, this didn’t pose us a problem – although we were challenged by the head waiter on our final day for sitting in the wrong place!!
“First Breakfast” – ie proper breakfast – was good, and plentiful, with enough choice to keep us all happy. This finished at 10am and if you missed this, you had to go to “Second Breakfast”, which was very poor – literally bread and cheese, served in the bar. Lunch was also very good, and coffee and cake was available mid-afternoon, for those who got the munchies. The choice of cake was, however, limited, and the quality fairly poor.
Dinner came in two sittings (to ease the queues in the dining room I imagine). We were asked on arrival which sitting we would prefer, and chose the second of the 2, served from 7:30 to 8:30. Sadly, after this point, there was no food available at all until breakfast. During the entirety of our stay, even the snack machines near the pool were out of order, which necessitated a trip to a neighbouring pizza shop one night for the ever-hungry boys. This was also very disappointing, and something we’ve never experienced at any other Riu hotel.
As previously mentioned on this site, the visitors to the hotel were almost exclusively German. The staff spoke English just fine, however, and this had no impact at all upon our stay.
Finally, a quick word about the “entertainment”. This was provided by 2 animation employees, and consisted of limited daytime activities (tai chi, aerobics, pool tournaments etc), a children’s disco from 8 until 9, some sort of “show” between 9 and half past, and then a disco (played from one of the staff’s CD collection) until 11pm. The entertainment room then closed, and guests were asked to return to the upstairs bar, which closed at midnight. The neighbouring area contained several bars and restaurants, but almost all were permanently closed as it was out of season. We had anticipated this before we went, however, and took card games and books to keep us occupied. Without these we would have been quite bored.
The hotel is approximately 5-10 minutes walk to the beach, which is pleasant and clean, but was far to cold for us to take a dip in January!!
So, would we return to the Riu Playa Park? Definitely not. Nor would I recommend it to friends. All in all, this is probably best ranked as a Spanish 3 * hotel, and on that basis the price we paid was overpriced. In retrospect, we were swayed by the Riu brand, but this adds nothing to the quality of the hotel at all.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * Located in Playa de Palma * 9-storey building * 14,000 m2 garden * 350 m from the beach * 12 km from the centre of Palma * 100 m from various shops * 5 km from the airport * 300 m from a bus stop * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa, Diners ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Playa Park Hotel
- Riu Playa Park De Palma
- Hotel Riu Playa Park Playa De Palma, Majorca