portuguese words for all inclusive are, tudo incluido. with all the pros and cons of such facilities. overall a great experience and what i really consider the perfect vacation.
3/or 4 self service restaurants, a dozen bars a wide pool covering about the all campsite, and of course in the morning breathtaking sunrises.
When we came the first evening they had placed us in room 2308. This room is not the best there is...inside its okey, but you are near the pool, Mamajuana, the theather and a bar. So if you want a early night you have a problem...and the same if you want to sleep a little longer.
Its not a cheap hotel, but you get what you have payed for. Good help, nice people, good service, wonderfull food, clean rooms and surroundings....its the best, luxury hotel i have ever been to.
And not to forget, my little friend came by everyday on television....also all-inclusive...ha ha.
Cause we wanted to have room next to our English friend who came 2 days later, we only have been in room 2308 for 2 days. After that they offerd us room 3116. And this is a good room. No noise from what so ever! And not to far from what you would like to do or where you would like to go.
Clean, good service when we went, 2nd week in May, but I hear it gets very bussy during their peak season. Anyway, this place will run you about 40% more then your average all- incl resort but you get name brand beer, great wines, and up-scale food.
Great beach and pool, Scuba diving is great and the prices are good.
Flight: Left from Montreal April 2005,with Sky Services, Very small charter flight, left on time, friendly staff…had even an extra pillow. Arrived at the Punta Cana Airport on time.
Arrival: They are fast and very helpful, even take a picture of you when you arrive. You pick it up on the way out. The bus ride to the hotel though was a bit ruff, thought we lost the luggage in the back of the bus a couple of time. Travelers beware the Dominican’s do not drive like us Canadian’s. Hotel Room: Arrived at the Hotel and was received very well by the hostesses with a fruit punch drink and 2 dancers. This resort is beautiful… Our room wasn’t quite ready when we arrived but that was fine, cause we are on vacation so we walked around a bit in the front lobby, just smelling the warm air felt good. Once we did get to the room 32212 was very clean, fresh towels, king size bed, Satellite TV, and the fridge wasn’t quite full missing water called and 5 minutes later it was delivered, services was impeccable. Beach towels supplied to us every day. The maid service was good. We had the pool view which was better than the swamp view. We had 2 mosquitos in the room. The Resort: This place is clean, very clean. The grass is green, flowers are beautiful, tall palms trees. The washrooms were very clean also. The Staff: Cannot complain at all. Very polite & even try to speak your language if you try to speak there’s and very funny. There all great!
The Food: I’m not a big eater when it comes to the heat, but trust me I ate; my boyfriend (at the time) was even surprise at how well I ate. The food was great at every buffet, even the restaurants you had to choose from. Our favourite was the Café de Paris. It was the top notch restaurant of the resort, the only one we really we were not crazy for was the Fish restaurant. Near the beach, But after all it is a different country and I have really no complaints on the food. Excursions: We did 1 only went with the Bavaro Runners; we were a small group and had lots of fun. Visited the island a bit more, but we really wanted to relax so only 1 excursion was done after a long cold winter you need to relax in the sun.
Will we go back? Definitely in about 5 years time for it to grow and see the difference. But will surely recommend it to anybody it’s worth the 5 stars that it’s rated for. Had a wonderful time at the Bahia Principe
This resort was a 4 star superior. It has about 8 restaurants (two of which are buffets). It's located right on the beach. It's clean, spacious and located in a cluster of neighbouring resorts. There is a neighbouring casino and is close to the main shopping plazas. There is both daily and nightly entertainment and activities. Family friendly as well. Highly recommended.
We stayed at this hotel during our honeymoon. The hotel came as part of the package through Apple Vacations. Until then, we never did all-inclusive.
This actually brings me to the most surprising conclusion from tasting the hotel food: In a region where mangos, papayas, pineapples, mellons, and myriads of other fruits basically grow wild, our hotel somehow managed to procure the most tasteless specimens of each of the species. Given the abundance of local produce, that must have taken some effort!
The rooms are all Jr. Suites, garden view. There are no ocean view rooms, which was disappointing, considering the hotel's close location to the ocean. The room design and condition is on par with a "Holiday Inn" or similar midrange hotel in the States; given the prices we expected at least a nice comforter in the room instead of a dingy blanket.
The final peeve comes from the service at the hotel. Most arrangements (e.g. dinner reservations, tour booking, buying a password for Internet access) cannot be done over the phone and require going to the front desk and standing in the inevitable line for 20 minutes. The front desk staff is either incompetent or plain lazy - with a couple notable exceptions. If you end up in this hotel, look up a girl named Laura among the front-desk staff; she'll cut the red tape with a smile.
The dive-shop was well-stocked with good equipment, and the dive instructors were competent. Make sure to sign up for dive excursions or training at least a couple days in advance - the instructors are overworked as it is! There's a shipwreck nearby that is accessible to novice divers ( 12 meter depth), but it's a boring freighter, and the stern part with all the machinery is completely gone.
The hotel is rather secluded from the mainstream Punta Cana population. It offers unlimited food facilities, all-you-can drink alcohol and several ethnic restaurants (i.e., Japanese, Mexican). 24-hour room service is offered, but the food is largely inedible, and they don't offer alcoholic drinks (forget asking for a bottle of champagne!)
The resume is:
If you come on a vacation to lay on the beach and do nothing, this place is perfect. If you come to dive or snorkel, stay in the La Romana area and spend some quality time on the Saona island - the visibility is much better and there's much more life around the reefs. If you come to be active, to sightsee and interact with the locals, this is NOT the place. In fact, the hotel staff goes to great pains to make sure that you stay inside the hotel complex.
I was at Going One Club Bavaro, an Italian holiday village near the international resort Fiesta Bavaro. You can take part at many activities organized by the village staff. You can play beach volleyball or play bowls on the sand. There are two tennis courts and one archery field: There is a little football ground too. You know, italian people love football so much!! You listen to the music all the day and you can try to dance the merengue.
Here is our experience at Bahia Principe, 24April 2005 - 1May 2005
Three of us had some kind of stomach sickness. We didn’t take Imodium with us, nor did we use Malaria pills. It is advisable to do so, as there is a swamp full of mosquitoes in the middle of the resort. A mosquito repellent bought from the resort at an exorbitant price didn’t help: mosquitoes landed and ate comfortably from areas of our skin previously sprayed.
Be on time at your a-la-carte restaurants! At Mikado we were late by 12 minutes. The manager wanted us to reschedule, since the persons with whom we were scheduled to share the table were already there. We refused to go away: being in vacation and not in the army, a 12-minute-late wasn't such a big crime. Finally, the manager agreed to squeeze us in, saying we would have to skip the Miso soup and the Tempura shrimp, our co-table partners had time to eat in those 12 minutes we were late!? However, he seated us at an empty table. While eating our sushi, he came and said: “I see you are eating very fast, so I can offer you our Miso soup, too.” We refused, as we didn't like to be treated as if were at someone’s mercy.
As its location is next to the ecological swamp full of mosquitoes, we asked for our daughter not to be taken on their outside playground. There were no special activities, probably because there weren’t enough kids. A teacher also advised us we couldn't leave her with them more than 3 hours at a time.
Our flight was scheduled to leave from terminal #1, which isn't airconditioned. We found very hard to breathe surrounded by smokers and the fuel "breeze” coming from the planes (this airport is an open one :) However, in the adjacent terminal #2 that is airconditioned, one can enjoy breathing, and also eating at some restaurants, or shopping at the duty-free shops. As there are no chutes or shuttles from the airport to the plane, walking to the plane in the tropical heat and fuel vapors was also annoying.
TIP: It was well worth the Bahia Principe Golden Club upgrade, as they did our check-in while we were in the bus to our hotel!
RESTAURANTS AND FOOD
We would recommend going to the French restaurant, “Le Gourmet,” even four times. It was the best! In general, at the buffets, the food was plentiful and there was a good variety but we all seemed to have a problem finding something we liked.
RESORT & BEACH
Awesome room-service (thanks Ramona!), awesome aerobic classes on the beach (thanks Jose and his colleague who’s name escapes me!), and awesome beach (thanks God!). Very, very friendly staff!
TIP1: If you want a hut that is closed to the beach AND the swimming-pools, get up early. Around 6:30 am they were all taken. The tip I’ve read that you can throw your towel on a chair by the midnight wasn’t helpful, as they clean the beach and stack the chairs on almost every evening.
TIP2: Don’t miss the shopping village located a 20-minute-walk from the resort. They have very good deals on oil-on-canvas paintings! They can wrap you the canvas, so it is easy to transport them back home.
We would go back to this resort tomorrow!
I have posted a more detailed version of this comment on tripadvisor.com, where I am also a member, yet under a different nick.
I recently traveled to Punta Cana for a 7 day stay. This is a new resort. We had a fantastic time. Be prepared to overlook the small stuff and you'll be fine. The staff were remarkably friendly and bent over backwards to make our stay memorable.
I did as much research online thru Debbie's Dominican Republic page which proved quite useful with information . It was well worth the money to go. A bit secluded but great place if you need a get away.
The lazy river pool ran the length of the resort. The beach chairs were plentiful and never a problem.Our room was spotless and the bed turned down each night with candies or fresh flowers on the bed. Nothing was bothered by way of our personal items.
For the most part the food was great. Be prepared to
eat a lot of fresh fruits, vegetables and fish. However, it was all in abundent quanity.
If you want a great beach ....go to Punta Cana . Neil and I just came back a few weeks ago and I have to say it is one of the nicest beaches I have been to ...and I use to live in The USVI !! The place we stayed at was ok ....no 4 or 5 star ..but the room was fine and the air worked !! The place was an all enclusive ..so ..ok the food was basic , the drinks a tad watered down but with that beach who cares .. If you go and are from the US bone up on your German , French and Spanish ..Most of the folks there are from Europe and English is not the first language .. Actually we had a fantastic time ..We met nice people from all over the world .. We would go again ..any time ..
If you want a room near the beach ...ask for a room in the 4000"s . It might take a while but with a tip you just might get lucky .
I would recommend this hotel to everyone.
There were a lot of things to do.
People were always very friendly.
Santana Beach hotel was a dream come true.
The hotel was great! Rooms were big. Food was good.
The beach could be better, but if you are used to the Belgium beach, you don't complain.
There was a fantastic swimming pool!
Animation was great!
This is a beautiful hotel facility. The grounds are well groomed and the beach is awesome. We traveled in May, the second rainyest month of the year. This is definatelty off peak time the hotel was maybe half full. Air Canada has a huge presence at this hotel, but many Germans and French people come here on holiday. Punta Cana in general seems to be more favored by Europeans than Americans.
Hotel service was very good. Air-conditioning did go out for 1 night, but with cieling fans wasn't too bad. Food was OK you can always find something good to eat at the buffet and the a la carte resturants were really good. Menu items are not prepared as you may expect the same items to come in the US. Not at all bad just done differently. If your a picky eater you may not do well. Never knew that there were so many way to prepare banannas. The breads are awesome!! The bakers here really know what they are doing. Lots of fresh fruit and some very elaborate friut displays.
The beach is great. There are lots of chairs and if you want a palapya you need to get out by 8 or 9 and reserve one with your towel or bag. There is some seaweed that accumulates, but there are workers cleaning it up everyday. If you bring a bananna or bread and throw some small bits in the water you will get a lot of fish to come to you.
CAUTION to AMERICANS: There will be topless sunbathing!! I've read a few reviews on some other sites complaining about this. If you don't like topless sunbathing, men in Speedo's, or kids playing without suits don't come to Punta Cana. Personally it's nice to see normal people who aren't up tight about thier bodies. Yes most are normal people, not many model types (there are a few!!).
ANYONE WALKING THE BEACH AREA WITH A NOTEBOOK OR BINDER IN THEIR HAND IS GOING TO TRY TO SELL YOU SOMETHING!!
Overall we enjoyed the resort. This was our first trip to an all inclusive. I think we would do all inclusive again and may even look for an Occidental resort but go elsewhere just to compare the experience.
We went for our wedding aniversary. My wife wrote to the hotel and got us an upgrade to a beach side (almost a beach view) superior room at no cost. We did have to fax a copy of our marriage licience to confirm the info.
The nightly stage shows were great and the entertainment staff works very hard.!! Could be a little loud if you turned in early, most events were done by 11.
Bring more essentials ,like sunscreen, with you than normal. If you run out there is a souvenir, cigar, photo, and sundrie store at the hotel. The are EXTREMELY expensive. A tube of sunscreen will start at $20 and up from there. Other snack and essentials are sold for equally high prices.
Two times per week the hotel has vendors set up in the courtyard by the pool and buffet hall. I found this super annoying!! These guys made the beach flea market seem like girl scout camp. Everyone was on you to "look" at their wares. "Cheapy ,Cheapy for you my friend." "You look for free!" There was no way to get to the buffet hall or pool bar without dealing with them usually by saying no thanks two or three times. The prices these guys offered were astronomical. My wife had a couple drinks and tried to deal on some work carvings and didn't do well. Many many sellers would try to guilt you about being a "Rich" person on holiday and don't sweat a couple dollars.
Another annoying feature of the hotel was the"information" booth conviently located at evey bottle neck in the resort. These are actually sales people for the Occidental Club to get time shares. They do also sell on the beach. The watersports booth and the Occidental club are the only people allowed to sell in the beach chair area. On the beach front you will also be approached by the watersports staff, Occidental time share, and locals selling shells, hair braiding, and the like. Not too bad as to distract from the beach. Just say no thanks and they go on thier way.
We vacationed here about 2 years ago and have sent many people there since. The hotel ,which is an all inclusive, is very clean and the rooms are very large. The beach is by far the most beautiful with trees for shade and plenty of chairs. The food was very good -we loved the fresh fish grill which was right on the beach! There is a trolley train system which allows you to visit other hotels in the Barcello complex where you can have meals too.
The best was the beach but if you like pools the pool was huge and very well kept.
Nighttime entertainment was good and drinks, which are included were for the most part ok. Margaritas were not as good as other places we've stayed. Tours seemed reasonably priced. If you want to golf, the golf course is good but tee times can only be made the day before.
My bride and I went to the Occidental Grand, Punta Cana for our honeymoon. I paid extra for “A Grand Romance Deluxe Room” with, “Bottle of champagne, strawberry covered with chocolate, first morning breakfast in bed, romantic dinner, turn down service, and 10% discount on spa treatments”.
We received none of these things or services. When we checked in, Johanna seemed to be too busy to help us get registered. Our room had water standing on the floor and the A/C did not work. Back to Johanna who rudely told us that the A/C did work and that the floor would dry but she would send someone to check it out.
A nice technician came to the room, verified the A/C did not work and said he would fix it. 2 hours later, still no A/C. Finally found a “manager” and in 15 minutes the A/C was working. We spent 4 hours trying to get this taken care of. The room was not a “Grand Romance Deluxe Room” in fact the “manager” said they did not have “deluxe rooms”.
Day two and we were corralled by the “vacation club Nazis.” Actually time share dressed up. My new bride insisted on listening to their spiel and we spent 4 hours, (wasted) that turned into bullying and cajoling. They charged over $6,000 to my credit card, without my knowledge or permission but I didn’t find that out until later. We finally became rude and left with them still trying to get me to talk to one more manager who would make me a better deal. We left but they said we had to sign a release so they could refund my money. I had not paid money, (I didn’t think) so we left.
The next day they tracked us down and convinced me I had to sign a release because they had charged my credit card. I never signed anything and never gave verbal permission for this charge. I signed a release then tracked down a real manager. After I told him my story he said he would get us a 2 day refund and a certificate for a free 7 day visit in the future. He said to email him personally when we came and he would make sure we had a great time. He told us to come back to his office that afternoon and he would have the certificate and refund.
We came back and he regretfully told us that the “general manager” had denied the 7 free days but he had a letter for me to give to my travel agent, GoGo Tours, and they would give me the 2 day refund. Yeah right.
The resort is beautiful, pools clean, beach fantastic, and the staff is very friendly and helpful. But the time share Nazis are a bummer. You have to be rude before they leave you alone. The room was marginally clean but needed updating and the hassles we had with A/C and promises not kept make this a resort that we will not return to.
Excellent beach, great pools and friendly staff
My fiance and I traveled in September 2011 to the lovely Majestic Elegance in Punta Cana. I have been wanting to write this review for awhile and I am finally getting around to doing it. We had a wonderful stay at the Majestic Elegance (adult section). From the arrival at the airport to that crazy taxi ride to the hotel and through are trip everyone and everything was wonderful. The taxi ride was very interesting. They pass people very quickly with near oncoming traffic! We made it safe though to the Majestic.
They treated us well from the moment we got out of the cab. We received drinks and a walk around the beautiful resort. We celebrated our 5 year anniversary there and they upgraded us to a suite overlooking the pool and the beach. Our suite was amazing! It was huge and we had a great balcony in a perfect location. We were moments from the pool, pool bar, beach, computer lounge and a staffed desk. The beach is by far the best beach front compared to what we saw when we walked 3 miles in each direction on the beach. Others were very crowded and loud music blaring. Majestic was quiet and romantic. Couples were all around and everyone was respectful. The water is beautiful and warm! We lucked out on the weather in September! 80 degrees sunny every day. It rained one time at 3am, it was so hard it woke me up, but by morning it was gone :)
The property is very beautiful, you always saw people working and up-keeping the place. The restaurants were good/decent at best. But you can't expect the best for all inclusive. My favorite restaurant was the french restaurant. The breakfast was always great. Fresh fruit, ready to order omelets, croissants, juice coffee, others. Waiters were always watching to see if you needed more water or coffee or juice. A couple times you would ask and they would forget, but it was no worries. Just ask the next person you see and it was right out! I didn't blame them, no worries, you're on vacation!
The activities were fun and cheesy at times, but it was a sight to see. The couple game was really funny. There was an older couple and when the wife saw how she had to pop balloons on her man she walked off the stage! It was all great fun and a lot of energy. The music was always great, they had some beautiful jazz and couples would dance it was outside, just beautiful mood.
The staff was always pleasant and willing to assist. People I see complain about the language barrier, but what do you expect when you go to a Spanish speaking country! I used my best high school Spanish when speaking with them and you could tell they appreciated it, even though I probably butchered the language. And a simple hablo ingles? And the ones that could speak English would.
Overall excellent time and wonderful people, property and mood. Would definitely go back for another anniversary.
We walked up amd down the shores of Punta Cana and it seemed like the Majestic Elegance had the best beach, water and atmosphere.
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