More about Tortuga Bay
We stayed in an Ocean View two-bedroom suite which overlooks the Caribbean Sea some 50 yards away. Tortuga Bay consists of 15 Villas with either ocean or golf views inside the Punta Cana Resort and Club. Everything was perfect; the weather, the accomodations, flat screen TVs, the help, especially the bartenders at the Bamboo and the Villa Managers who take care of your every need, the beach. The Punta Cana airport arrival and departure alone is worth the money - a representative literally whisks you through every line and the customs and passport inspectors give the Tortuga Bay residents and guests preferential treatment. We went to the head of every line and could wait for our departure flight in a beautiful air-conditioned lounge with food and open bar. We left our home at 6am in the Philadelphia area and were on the beach (losing an hour) by 1:30pm in the afternoon. Golf is pretty good at the resort (6,600 yards from the member tees) but I heard that Cap Cana 10 minutes away is even better. Some of the restaurants were less than perfect; La Choza left something to be desired but La Yola and the restaurant at the golf club were excellent. You do go broke with tips, so bring some cash with you - a no tip policy would be very nice.
Just back from 5 days at Tortuga Bay. It was everything we hoped it would be and more. Spectacular scenery, gorgeous property, spacious, clean and luxurious room, and 1st class service. We took our golf cart over to PC Resort and although we do wish we had eaten at la yola at the marina, we were perfectly happy staying at Tortuga. Actually, I can't imagine ever wanting to leave! We have been to many wonderful first class resorts.......this is our new favorite. TOTAL relaxation.........I can't wait to go back.
Terrible service in beautiful setting
First the pros: beautiful room, great beach.
But sadly the cons are pretty bad. The service at Tortuga Bay thankfully is OK. But once you venture to the main hotel of Punta Cana, all bets are off. The staff members aren't just slow. They're just plain not nice. No smiles, no greetings. I spent a whole morning commiserating with another woman who traveled from NY. Also, many people do not speak English but pretend they do. For example, I ordered "noodles" for my son and was given some sort of brick hard chicken diskette. The waiter insisted that these were indeed noodles.
If all you want and care about is a great beach, this is your place. But for service and food, stay away. This is also not a family friendly. My 2 and 4 year old kids had to drink out of wine glasses for the week. And the kids menus are extremely limited.
Great Place to Relax
We just returned from vacationing at Tortuga Bay and we can't say enough good things. As soon as we arrived, we were greated by the hotel and wisked past the custom lines. Upon arriving at the resort, we were checked in at our villa and were even upgraded to Ocean Front Villa. The views are amazing and we were able to sit on our patio for hours relaxing to the sounds of the ocean.
The beach is excellent as the water is aqua, calm and relatively warm.
The resturants are above average as we ate at La Yolla, Bamboo the most. The golf course is pretty good; however, CapCana's course is better. The spa is top notch and worth going to the resort just for there services.
In the end, if you are looking to soak up the sun and relax away from the hoards of people, this is the place.
FYI, the service at the airport is amazing, on departure, we were greated at the airport, wisked to the front of the AA line, processed through customs and then escorted into their private lounge for a few cockatils.
Tortuga Bay was delightful. We stayed in an Ocean front one bedroom...2 full baths (big plus!), lots of windows, a terrace and an outdoor hot tub, de la Renta decor and the best part, the privacy. Because Tortuga is separate from Punta Cana Hotel, our beach was long and only the guests of TB were dotted along the beautiful shoreline. Plenty of comfortable chairs, towels, umbrellas, palm trees and it's a great beach for walking! We had our lunch on the beach each day under the palms.
Our meals were good. We liked La Yola at the marina best. Request a table along the water.
Bone up on your Spanish, but we never felt it was an issue at all! The staff was lovely and went overboard to accommodate us. We aren't golfers, but the course looked great. The spa was very nice...the Reflexology was my favorite treatment.
The arrival and departure from the lovely Punta Cana airport was first class all the way! Almost embarrassing as the PC employees whisk you to and from your plane by golf cart! They offer a fabulous lounge with refreshments, tvs and computers to relax before take off.
Truly, from the moment you land to the last goodbye, Tortuga was fantastic. We will return soon!
Overrated & Overpriced
Poorly managed upscale hotel that switched category room without notice. Although 51 units here with most empty and after arriving at 9PM from a 4 hour flt from Santa Domingo, kept us waiting 2 hrs to clean the room. Our villa manager was poorly trained - provided no orientation info nor map of the facility so we would know how to get around. Room problems = doors and windows wouldn't open or unable to secure, broken window louvers, no shower drainage so water just sat there all day long, cheap alarm clock you can't read during day, loose toilet seat, and TV facing wall so no easy way to watch. Provided no menu at breakfast until we saw people eating items other than those provided on the banquet. When we finally had to ask for one two days later, given one with prices on it, suggesting items on it are not complementary when they are. Beach attendant frequently missing, failing to offer beach amenities or inform that beach chairs are assigned, and talking and laughly loudly with security guards while guests are trying to read or sleep. Tried to scuba dive but dive master was inexplicably absent and no one to take his place.
If you want to get away from cell phones, this is not the place to be since they give you one and it is the only way to communicate with your villa manager. Stayed at upscale resorts many places but this was the most poorly trained staff we have ever found with room problems we have never before encountered. For the money they charge at Tortuga Bay, you get a lot more at the Four Seasons and other upscale resorts. Definitely not worth the price.
Your own private resort
Our stay was everything we hoped it would be; relaxing, luxurious, peaceful and tranquil.
The aim was to do some serious chilling prior to the arrival of our first child and Tortuga Bay was the perfect destination.
The room we had (Ocean view Suite) was right on the beach, perfect location. It had a kitchen, huge bathroom, huge sleeping/living area and a massive wrap around balcony. We thought the décor was just right, slightly modern but still traditional. The view was to die for.
The beach is postcard perfect. During our stay it was quite windy which was actually not bad because it stopped me from over heating.
We had a couples massage on the beach front at the spa, it was excellent. The overall ambience of the spa is very relaxing and luxurious.
The restaurants are spread over the resort. We tried The Marina, Bamboo and the restaurant at the golf clubhouse for dinners, our favorite was bamboo. The food was very good and the service excellent. We did not try any of the restaurants at the Punta Cana Resort hotel next door because we heard mixed reviews. The meal we had at the Marina Restaurant was very average (my wife’s fish was under cooked and she was pregnant!) but others said it was very good.
For lunch we definitely liked the Grill (at the golf club) best. We had ordered lunch from the beach a couple of times, but to be honest the beach service was a bit spotty.
I thought the resort had a good layout but you will need the golf cart to go to the golf club / spa and the marina. The pool area, bar and bamboo restaurant was very nicely done. It is well maintained by an army of landscapers.
Finally the icing on the cake are the staff; really really nice helpful people. From housekeeping; bar staff, waiters, villa managers, everyone was so nice. They took the time to remember our names and drinks & food preferences and made us feel at home. One highlight of the service was the surprise candlelit bath with flowers.
Overall all ambience of the resort is peace and quiet at a beautiful location; we stayed for a week and despite having 80% occupancy at times there was no one around. More often than not we had the whole beach to ourselves. On a couple of occasions we were the only folks at the restaurants.
We definalety highly rate this place and will be coming back some time in the near future (kid in tow).
great beach front home, i mean resort
This resort is absolutely fabulous if you are looking to get away from it all via high quality accommodations and service. If you are looking for nightlife or partying or spring break this is absolutely not the place you want to go.
However ,if you are looking for total relaxation in a private secluded luxurious beach setting there are very few that could compete with this resort.
I took my wife here for our 5 Th anniversary in early November 2007. Granted it was "off-season", but there was literally no one here. This place feels more like you are the guest of a billionaire friends and you are staying in his private compound than a hotel. The rooms are extremely large, modern and luxurious, because you are really staying in a large brand new house, the resort is less than 2 years old. The beach is easily one of the nicest that I have ever been to. There is nothing to do here but relax and enjoy. The villa mangers took care of our every wish and even upgraded our room. This place will exceed even the most demanding guest's wishes and is truly a boutique hotel and one of the finest in the world.
I am a serious golfer and the course was very nice, but not world class. However, it is in superb condition and a very enjoyable track. The only thing it lacks is a replay package as one day I played 18 holes and finished in 2 hours 20 minutes and only went through a single foursome on the course! Additionally, CapaCanas course is just 15 minutes away as well. The facilities at the Puntacana's golf course and beach club are extremely nice. My wife loved the spa.
The service at Tortuga bay is extraordinary, (think Ritz Carleton, Four Seasons level) The Bamboo restaurant is extremely tasty and the decor is wonderful. (the only strike i would say is that it is "very heavy cuisine" and a bit pricey with limited dinner selections, maybe 10 choices and ala cart at $50 minimum for an entree, and they wont permitt you to order the lunch menu at dinner)
However, the lunch menu is the same as room service and is very large and excellent. The restaurant is very tasty and has the best crab cakes I have eaten. The beach front dineing is great. The bar staff is fun and you feel more like a part of the family than a guest. The butler service is there to answer any question you may have and fully takes care of your every wish via a cell phone. This place is truly one of the nicest you will ever see.
The only negative of the whole experience was the limited dinner selections and the beach front beverage wait staff service was very sparse. I am not sure i would want to be here at peak season. The sister resort is more than 40 years old and it shows. We had dinner here one night and it was poor, However we had dinner at the marina restaurant and it was world class. on both occasions.
Even more incredible is the fact that Puntacanas owner is the only man in the world to own his own international airport. (less than 5 min away) The "round-trip transfer service" is completely understated. They pick you up and guide you the second you step foot on the tarmac. The guides then bypass you through all of the hundreds of people standing in line to clear customs. On the departure it is even better because they fast track you by every person in line for customs, immigration, and ticketing. They then take you to a beautiful air conditioned lounge that feels like a South Beach night club more than an airport lounge. It has flat screen TVs, and complimentary bar and food service. They then wait to the last minute until your plane is fully loaded and whisk you onto the jet, you will be the last one seated and they will not leave with out you. I have flown private jets a great deal and this is the closet you will come to a fix based terminal going commercial. This service really makes you feel like a rock star and is a giant plus.
Overall, I would highly recomend this resort to anyone and cant wait to get back there.
Exceptional service, wonderful resort
Just back from 5 fantastic nights at Tortuga Bay. If you are looking for total relaxation at a gorgeous and quiet place, this is it!
It is hard to explain the level of service -- it is like nothing we've ever experienced, an especially welcome surpise for the carribean (and we've been to various high end resorts on different islands each winter for the past 5 years).
From the moment we stepped off the plane & saw our name on the placard, we were totally taken care of a la rock stars! We were in our villa within 30 minutes of landing & began to relax right away. The staff was so kind and efficient -- everything just worked so smoothly. I speak Spanish which helped at times though it seems most have passable (though not great) English.
The place is simply immaculate with an army of landscapers constantly grooming the beach & walkways. The room is just as pretty as it looks on the website and perfectly maintained twice a day by expert housekeeping. Truly comfortable & open with a fantastic balcony (we were in an oceanfront junior suite) and unobscured view of the beach just below. Decor is minimal & elegant which really appealled to us. The sort of room you don't mind being in for a little while in the unlikely event of a storm (we had a one afternoon of bad -- windy -- weather which they said is pretty unusual).
We had great fun tooling around on the golfcarts & also riding bikes though the enormous property. We are not golfers though many guests raved about the challenging courses. We went snorkelling which was fun & really clear with lots of nice fish & coral to look at. Also went on the included "ecological" tour. Part of what these owners have built on the property is a sustainable farm... they are very proud to show you around. We liked seeing & swimming in the natural lagoons but were not wild about riding donkeys, holding hens, feeding goats, etc... it took longer than we expected (2.5 hrs) so just know that before you go...
Otherwise we just relaxed on the nearly deserted beach. The chaises are really comfortable & umbrellas plentiful. The ocean is quite calm because of where the resort is sited. Not too many waves.. nice to just swim in the warm waters! We did a lot of walking -- you can wander down the shore for a very very long stretch & it is totally natural. You don't see ANY buildings -- no other resorts (only club med is remotely close though we only saw that when we were out on a boat). All of the big hotels, all inclusives, condos, etc are in a totally different part of the area. So we just walked -- really flat & nice for strolling or jogging.
Sometimes we would head to the beautiful golf clubhouse which has a magnificent pool and nice spot for lunch. The 6 senses spa is also there. The spa is fantastic -- seems to be run & staffed by Thais. It is truly exquisite -- very asian feeling.
Meals were better than we expected for the caribean. Breakfast at Bamboo, beside the pool, was very nice. Excellent coffee!! You can go for the buffet or they will prepare anything you want (omlette, oatmeal, fruitshake). We had excellent salads for lunch each day from either Bamboo (which will bring you a meal at the beach if you prefer) or the Golf house. Dinners were pleasant but less impressive. Best dinner was "Dominican BBQ" at Bamboo on friday night -- lots of fun & great food!
We loved the fact that we didn't feel compelled to really dress up for dinner. It is a very relaxed place -- pretty quiet & private. If you are looking for a party atmosphere & intense night life, Tortuga is not the place. With that said, we certainly met a lot of really lovely people -- mostly Americans though some Europeans, all quite active, sophisticated & well travelled. At first we were shocked by how few people seemed to be there but we quickly got used to it & enjoyed being at a resort that is large in size but small in number of people -- it is so spread out that you just don't run into crowds in any way.
While we like to try new resorts each year, we feel it will be hard to match the experience at Tortuga! It just feels incredibly exclusive & everything we had hoped for in a relaxing getaway.
Nice Place - Wacth out for the Taxes and Fees !
The villas were very tatsefully appointed and the staff was very accommodating all around, although at times there were just too many in staff, to the point where there was true disorganization. There is a big language gap, as most of them speak very little english, so the restaurants frequently get the orders wrong. Time and patience perservere here, and they were always willling to correct it. The personal concierge was a nice amenity and helped smooth thiings over. Watch out for the surcharges, which are 26% (16% for D. Republic and 10% for the "legal hotel service fee") It adds up quick and makes this resort, in my opinion, not very value driven, nor does it rise the level of five stars.