Where to Stay: The Riu Palace in Costa Rica

by Emma Hackwood

Planning a trip to Costa Rica?  We sent our Flightie Ryan Milne to the newly opened Riu Palace to test it out and he shares his experiences with us today:


The new Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica, is located in Guanacaste, Costa Rica on the edge of the beach of Matapalo. The hotel was just opened for two weeks when we arrived and the service was fantastic.  Sometimes at new resorts you find that they still have to work out the kinks, but not at the RIU.  When they open a hotel, it is fully functional and you would never know it was new other then the look of the property.



Hotel Riu Costa Rica

The rooms offer a beautiful views of the grounds, beach and pool area. They are very quiet with dark shades and very comfy beds! The rooms were modern and decorated with whites and purples (and even cleaned two times per day!).

All the guest rooms have:

  • Room service 24 hours a day
  • Turndown service
  • Bathroom with hydromassage bathtub and shower cabin, double-sink
  • Bathroom amenities
  • Free WiFi
  • Central air conditioning
  • Ceiling fan
  • Mini-bar
  • Coffee maker
  • Satellite TV
  • Electronic in-room safe (laptop size 15″)
  • Balcony or terrace


Pool area

Riu Palace Costa Rica Pool

The pool area was incredibly relaxing and offer loungers in the water. There is no need to reserve a seat like at the RIU Guanacaste next door to the property. Did I mention they have four swimming pools to choose from?



The quality of the cuisine offered at the different restaurants of the hotel is fantastic offering a variety of dishes, from classic to the most exotic. Thanks to the all-inclusive service, you will be able to enjoy the buffet restaurant or the four different theme restaurants of the hotel. They will make you something if you have a specific request or allergy.



The lobby bar is modern, air conditioned and offers great views of the grounds and pool area which is beautifully lit up at night time. All of the drinks were great! There is the cappuccino bar which serve coffee and snacks, as well as the lobby bar which has snacks 24/7. The shows are held every night with live music.



Riu Palace Beach Costa Rica

The hotel offers a variety of activities on the beautiful beach such as diving or fishing in the Pacific waters, ecotourism in the volcanic areas, and during the day several programs of entertainment for all ages, whether you’re with family or friends. It is your typical dark sand beach that you will find throughout many parts of Costa Rica.  It’s important to note that the Pacific waters are usually a little rougher, so don’t expect a calm beach.

The resort is set in a valley between two large hills.  Very scenic and makes for great photos.

Riu Palace Costa Rica


Drive time from the airport to the resort is about 45 minutes.  I would suggest that you take the water taxi from the beach to Playa Coco.  I also recommend the excursion to the zip lining, horseback riding, hot springs and mud bath.  The excursions are all sold at the hotel by the tour operator or booked in advance through your travel agent.


Looking for more information on travelling to Costa Rica? Check out our Costa Rica Vacation Packages or contact Ryan Milne a Travel Manager with Flight Centre FC Business Travel Oakville based in Ontario by connecting with him online or calling 1-855-898-6801.