Just returned from a week long stay (Mar 27 – Apr 3). Arrived around midnight, but checkin was quick and easy (received a free 350ml bottle of rum as a welcome gift!). Resort is on same property as the Grand Oasis Punta Cana, which we had full access to. Checkout was quick and easy as well – this resort is only 15 minutes from the airport. Our tour guide on the way back to the airport gave quite a spiel about needing money to get back to Haiti to visit his family this month and would appreciate all you could give him. The majority of people on the bus felt this was unauthorized begging and were turned off. We all realize what a catastrophe happened to Haiti and many of us have supported the relief efforts here at home in Canada, but were really turned off with the way this plea for money was conducted and tipped accordingly. Speaking of tips, we spent about $35 in tips for the week (maids, bartenders, waiters, tour guides, etc.) We’ve found that the Dominicans tend to prefer the little gifts/trinkets, while the Cubans prefer the money.
All in all, we had a great time and I would definitely go back to this resort!
Room was ok – albeit a little musty, but the humidity was extremely high for most of our stay so there wasn’t much we could do about it. All 3 of our rooms were on the ground floor of either building 9 or 11 and our patio doors looked out onto one of the pools – very nice for the late afternoon when we would come up from the beach. We had a king size bed (which was very firm – so if you like a soft mattress – you’re out of luck), sofa and small flat screen TV, lots of space for setting or storing the luggage and extra footwear. Closet space was ample and the small fridge was re-stocked daily. The beer and pop is free, but if you consume anything else – you will be charged – be aware! Two large bottles of water are provided daily free of charge for drinking, brushing your teeth, etc.
Restaurants and Bars: Food was the best we’ve had at any of the resorts we’ve stayed at in Dominican Republic, Cuba and Mexico. Our group of 6 (3 couples) went to 4 a la cartes and enjoyed them all. The Japanese restaurant is an experience – even if you don’t enjoy the cuisine. One of the waiters at the Windows Buffet Restaurant stood out – Eldis – he is an absolute gem and will do anything to please – great job! Bars were plentiful as was the liquor.
Beach/Pools/Grounds: The beach is gorgeous and was only 2 minutes from our room. Resort had at least 5 pools – one with a swim-up bar.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: Many excursions are available. Four of our group did the zipline tour – left at 10 a.m. – returned around 4 p.m. 11 zip lines in all – one is almost a kilometre long! All had great fun, but it’s not for the faint of heart, nor someone who doesn’t like climbing stairs or hiking. Shopping is available on-site as well as just outside the gates – be prepared to haggle, but the vendors aren’t pushy. Internet is available to purchase $4 US for 15 minutes – one time use….so even if you don’t use all your minutes, you must pay again to use it another time.
Other Comments: The safe is an extra charge – $21 US – but well worth it! The electricity had some issues a couple of days, but it was only out for a few minutes at a time – nothing to get too concerned about.