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Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica

Playa Matapalo, Sardinal Costa Rica
COVID-19 update: See the added health and safety measures this property is taking.Read more
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Payments made by partners impact the order of prices displayed. Room types may vary.
Travel safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your stay
  • All linens sanitized in high-temperature wash
  • Face masks required for guests in public areas
  • Face masks required for staff in public areas
  • Floors marked for social distancing
  • Hand sanitizer available to guests & staff
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
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Updated 18/06/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
A note from Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
Updated 18/06/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.


#1 of 2 hotels in Sardinal
Travellers' Choice
The 24-hour all-inclusive Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica opens all year round and is located directly on the beautiful Matapalo beach. Our guests may use the facilities in the sister Hotel Riu Guanacaste, except dinner meal. RIU Palace is the most elegant category in the RIU hotel chain, with hotels that meet the highest standards in terms of luxury, excellence and sophistication, creating a unique experience. The location is ideal due to its proximity to Daniel Oduber Airport LIR (33 km) and Playas del Coco (18 km) and invites you to explore the area. The hotel has 538 cozily furnished rooms with free Wi-Fi and offers many amenities. Relax in our spa, or get in shape at the fitness center. 4 outdoor pools, 1 children's pool. Day and evening entertainment, as well as our Pacha Discotheque. For lovers of gastronomy, we offer live cooking stations at our main restaurant, Japanese, Italian, Fusion restaurant and Steakhouse, as well as 6 bars and our Cappuccino patisserie & ice cream parlor.
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Room & Suite (1,010)1,010
Full view
Property amenities
Free parking
Free internet
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room
Bar / lounge
Casino and Gambling
Pool / beach towels
Infinity pool
Pool with view
Outdoor pool
Fitness classes
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Kid-friendly buffet
Swimup bar
Poolside bar
Entertainment staff
Evening entertainment
Table tennis
Nightclub / DJ
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Kids club
Airport transportation
Car hire
Business Centre with Internet Access
Conference facilities
Banquet room
Meeting rooms
Couples massage
Facial treatments
Foot massage
Full body massage
Head massage
24-hour security
Baggage storage
Currency exchange
Gift shop
Sun loungers / beach chairs
Sun terrace
Sun umbrellas
24-hour front desk
Dry cleaning
Laundry service
Ironing service
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Room features
Private balcony
Room service
VIP room facilities
Laptop safe
Flatscreen TV
Room types
Ocean view
Good to know
Great View
Languages Spoken
5,891Reviews1,812Q+A100Room tips
Traveller rating
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Popular mentions
Natalia G wrote a review Yesterday
San Jose, Costa Rica66 contributions52 helpful votes
The hotel is nicely decorated. The lounge chairs near the pool offer some much needed shade during the day. The pools don't have much shade (just the first one). Around the pool it is very noisy, given that the staff plays music, and they allow other guests to bring their own portable speakers and play their own music. That was very annoying. The room itself was stripped down due to covid restrictions, so it has almost no decoration. They also removed the licour bottles. Stayed on a room on top floor, with great views. Highlight for me was the spa. It was amazing! The staff is friendly and the rooms are nicely decorated. The restaurant in my opinion doesn't have a good covid strategy as they don't always have someone making sure that guests wear masks while getting the food. Each guest touches the serving utensils and they nir always are wearing gloves (depending in occupancy the hotel allows guests to not wear gloves while handling the utensils of the buffet). There can also be a lot of people in the restaurant waiting in-line. They don't ask guests to maintain their distance either. While on the restaurant that specializes in meat I asked for a farther away table (there were plenty free) however the waiter was not very happy about it... he actually asked why did I want one further away and he even made a "don't bother me" face. Italian restaurant menu indicated there was osso bucco we went there and there wasnt any(they publish the menu on the same day). Noticed that other guests had the same issue. Also some of them didn't wear masks not gloves to get food from the entree buffet. Front desk staff doesn't really explain anything. They just hand out an envelope with some instructions. Other than that you are on your own. It was only ok... would I return? Not really.
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Date of stay: August 2020Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Schmillary wrote a review 5 Mar
9 contributions3 helpful votes
Go to the beach from the hotel turn left and find a relaxing canopy and a sweet lady named Hannia. Hannia gave me one of the best deep tissue massages I have ever had and at a fair price. I HIGHLY recommend her as I went multiple times during my week long visit!!
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Date of stay: March 2021Trip type: Travelled as a couple
marrerocb wrote a review 4 Mar
Miami Beach, Florida21 contributions33 helpful votes
Our first disappointing day was on arrival when he security staff denied us the entry to the resort for not having reservation number whit me. After I get very upset with this attitude my wife suggesting him calls to reception desk to verify ours reservation. … Ours room a Junior Suites, had no hands soap, mini bar only one beer for two people, no coffee, and the air conditioning did not cool well. You can't reserve the "a la carte" restaurant in advance, you need to be in line for almost an hour before the opening to be sure to get a place, so you have to wait form 5 to 6pm. You are losing precious vacation time, so you can’t planning a dinner with your wife or family group, dining there would be on a first come, first served basis so it was impossible for us to have. There is no a bar with good selection of drink does not expect more than a JW red label; there is no music, no game room. T he bar service on the beach is lousy and nobody helps you with the beach chairs. The pool areas were superb with shade or sunny areas which ever you would rather have and adequate shade all round. The grounds are beautiful and picturesque and well maintained and clean. Hotel staff are very warm and accommodating. Rooms are a bit dated, especially the bed but clean This hotel is really well situated, the beach is beautiful, light dark sand but powdery. Water is warm, waves are perfect! lots of trees for shade, The resort is very clean and also the pools.
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Date of stay: February 2021
Response from RIU Hotels and Resorts, Owner at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
Responded 2 days ago
Dear marrerocb , Thank you for taking the time to write a review on TripAdvisor! While we are happy to learn you enjoyed the friendly and welcoming service of our staff members, the hotel´s cleanliness, the pool area and the beach, it is disappointing that you encountered certain inconveniences that made your stay less pleasant. Please note that the current lack of amenities is because of our strict anti covid-19 protocols, which has been implemented to safeguard our guests. We would have liked to have been informed about your wishes during your stay as many of the mentioned amenities are available to customers at our reception. We look forward to welcoming you soon in one of our worldwide premises. Best wishes, Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica Online Reputation Manager
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Angel M wrote a review 3 Mar
18 contributions4 helpful votes
This place is beautiful, the food is delicious, the drinks are great, it is impeccably clean I could go on and on about these things that you may be able to find at other resorts. What is harder to find is a staff like we found at this resort. It would be unfair to name names because everyone is fantastic! The entertainment team is top notch and really wants you to have a good time, the pool bar and restaurant wait staffs are amazing, they work very hard and always are smiling and happy and somehow remember every guest. It has only been a week since we left and we are already planning another trip. We can't get back there soon enough
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Date of stay: February 2021Trip type: Travelled as a couple
3 Helpful votes
NajahAdele wrote a review 2 Mar
Brooklyn, New York19 contributions21 helpful votes
I came back to Riu Palace by myself for 10 days for the first time since 2015. Extremely COVID compliant for anyone traveling during this time. Rooms were beautiful and clean, staff was extremely nice, views were AMAZING. A few things - they provide COVID testing at the hotel onsite for about $150 but it takes 3-4 days for results so plan accordingly! Also, NO SMOKING lol. Cleaning staff saw me smoking on the balcony and said it would cost $1k if the room smelled like smoke. Needless to say, I started walking down to the beach for my spliff and it was amazing and the energy I needed. Due to COVID, the restaurant hours are rotating, but if you download the RIU app it shows what is open when. The resort also wasn't crowded at all which I prefer. The only watchout I would have is beware of the flies at Papagayo. It's closer to the beach and open format so it gets a little busy for the flies but it's nature. Not because the place isn't clean. Also with COVID, all of the buffet food is being served to you instead of people touching and sneezing all over the utensils. They check your temp at breakfast, and there's hand-sanitizer literally everywhere. And if wearing masks are a problem for you - just don't leave your country :). Stay home, respectfully. Special shoutout to Monica, Brantly, Christina in waiter service at the Arenal/Papagayo restaurant. There are two other men who I forget their names, but one was the tallest server in Arenal and the other was probably on the shorter side with beautiful eyes. They made sure I was taken care of everyday and had a fresh mimosa by my plate for breakfast. I tried to tip them big at the end. Arenal was probably my favorite restaurant because of all the food choices. The lady who makes the tacos on TACO TUESDAY IS AMAZING. Best tacos I ever had and I've been to Mexico 3 times!!! You must also try Krystal when it's open. The lobster risotto and duck breast were so good. The desserts!!!! Don't even get me started. That is pastry artwork in there. Even the damn icecream was amazing. There are nightly shows (sad to say I missed them this time around) but it seemed like a really a good time. Entertainment normally stopped around 11p but if you close your balcony door you don't hear much. The water slides at the front of the resort was a beautiful surprise addition. Yes I did slide!!!!! ScubaCaribe - Diego is literally my savior. He scheduled the 2hr jetski coast tour and ATV through the forest for me. He also went the extra mile and helped me to schedule all my taxis and COVID tests once I realized the hotel results would take longer than expected. Diegeo deserves the highest praise and the biggest raise. Also, big shoutout to John who was my scuba instructor. He went with me alone out to the reef and was extremely patient after I panicked a few times trying to get comfortable in my gear. He also snapped some underwater photos of me! CocoLoco Adventure Tours (on the beach) - Frank is the love of my life FYI. I will marry him when I return. He took me alone on a remote beach ATV tour across 4 beaches and up into the mountains. We went into town and brought beers and ceviche and watched the sunset on one of the remote beaches and he got my little black a** back to the hotel safe after dark. It was probably the best experience I had. I think the people on the beach offer some of the same things as ScubaCaribe so it's your choice. I went with SC with most of my activities because I was alone and wanted the hotel to have record of my movements - but you can honestly do it with either or. Also recommending a massage from the ladies on the beach 5Hannian. They do deep tissue right on the beach and it was everything. I wish I went back before my flight. I met so many wonderful people! I love love love love this resort and think I decided I'll come back every 2 years or so. Thanks again guys for making me feel safe, putting good food in my belly, and getting me to do adventurous things that black people don't normally do - especially alone lol. I love you guys!
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Date of stay: February 2021
Sleep Quality
Room Tip: I had room 5064 which had the direct view of the pools and beach and it was in between the...
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3 Helpful votes
US$217 - US$483 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Costa RicaProvince of GuanacasteGulf of PapagayoSardinal
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
Which popular attractions are close to Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Nearby attractions include Monkey's Bar & Restaurant (0.7 km), Playas del coco (6.2 km), and Playa Danta (6.5 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include a swimup bar, a pool, and an on-site restaurant.
What food & drink options are available at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Guests can enjoy a swimup bar, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Conveniently located restaurants include Toucanoos, Sentido Norte Restaurant, and Restaurante Mar Azul.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Yes, guests have access to a pool, a fitness centre, and fitness classes during their stay.
Does Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica have an airport shuttle?
Yes, Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica offers an airport shuttle for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Are any cleaning services offered at Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica?
Yes, dry cleaning and laundry service are offered to guests.
Does Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica offer any business services?
Yes, it conveniently offers a business centre, meeting rooms, and a banquet room.
Does Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the ocean view available here.
Is Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica accessible?
Yes, it offers wheelchair access and facilities for disabled guests. For specific enquiries, we recommend calling ahead to confirm.