Arrival First of all when we got to Punta Cana and drove through the gates of this hotel we were excited about how pretty it was. Well, beauty is only skin deep. When we checked in, they did not have the information about the $400 upgrade for VIP, so we were put into a regular room. The rep from our tour group was to talk to us the next morning. When we reached our room, a good half mile from the front desk, it was ice cold. Two lamps did not work, the remote control did not work, nor were there any alarm clocks. We had virtually no idea what time it was the whole time we were there unless we used our cell phones. The only light source we had was from a ceiling fan, but in order to use it, we had no way of turning off the fan, because the pull cord was missing. We could not adjust the air conditioner, or turn on the heat, for some reason, they must not allow people to do this, because the thermostat had no response to our adjustments. The water in the shower was ICE cold and there was NO WATER PRESSURE whatsoever. The reason we purchased the VIP package was because I had called the hotel and said I wanted a jacuzzi room, and whoever I talked to, told me the VIP rooms had jacuzzis. Well, with the water pressure as it was, it would have been absurd to fill a jacuzzi anyway. The hairdryer had only one setting, low. We talked to the concierge about the remote control, he told us. "You are VIP, you just call… we come take care of you" Two days later we received our working remote. The next morning, we voiced our concerns with our rep, had to sit for almost two hours while he sorted it out, even though we had all of our papers which stated "VIP" quite plainly, the hotel was denying it. We were handed the correct tags, internet, meal, massage and watersports coupons, but did not receive the rum or cigars.
There were never any watersports available, never any snorkles or parasailers. Who wants to use the internet on vacation anyway? The first full day we spent there, we were locked out of our room for nearly an hour, because our key did not work. We lost electricity and the ceiling in our bathroom was dripping on us. It took four phone calls to various people there before anyone came out to fix it. We had to get ready for our dinner with water dripping on our heads. My boyfriends eye was nearly swollen shut from a bug bite he received while sleeping on the first night. I had a bite above my eye, and two on my arm. He had three on his. Our room was full of mosquitos and ants. If you sat down a soda for five minutes, you had to look in it to make sure it wasn’t ant infested. The buffet food is absolutely horrible. I never once saw chicken, and the only time I ever saw beef was "head". You could order a cheeseburger from room service, but it took two hours to get there and was cold and disgusting.
We continued to ask about the rum, the cigars, and oh, don’t forget the bathrobes we were to have received in our room, which would have been nice coming out of a freezing cold shower and into a freezing cold room. In all, we probably made six phone calls, and stopped at the front desk four times, asked the concierge twice about the rum and cigars, everyone just wrote it down on a piece of paper. Nobody ever did anything about it. You couldn’t swim at night if you wanted to, they turn off all the lights surrrounding the pool and on the beach. Which was actually fine, because this hotel boasts that they have several jacuzzis, but we never did find one that was heated. All the water in the jacuzzis was as cold as the pool, which was too cold to enter. Nobody seemed to know anything about anything. I think that sometimes they just pretend to not understand so they don’t have to deal with you.
On our last day, I went again to Guest Services, which had a very surprisingly long line, each and every time we were there. (obviously there were LOTS of complaints). I told the gal at the desk that we were leaving and would like to get the rum and cigars, she told me that her supervisor had taken it to our room the day before. I informed them that we had not received it, I wanted someone to come to our room, and show me that it was there. She said it was "Impossible. My Supervisor is very very busy right now, and she is very good about doing what she says" She ended up getting the supervisor on the phone, but the "good supervisor" would not talk to me. I was basically called a liar. I never did receive the rum or the cigars. We don’t smoke, and we don’t drink, but I feel like I paid $400 for the rum and cigars, because that was the price of the room upgrade for what I believed would have a jacuzzi and did not. We did not use the other coupons, with the exception of the meal ticket. Which, when we showed up at the steak restaurant, we only had our ticket, not the paper it was stapled to, and my boyfriend had to walk all the way back to the room to get it. I watched this happen to two other people while I was waiting on him. The steak was edible, but a dollar menu cheeseburger from McDonalds is better, especially since we had to wait two hours to get it.
The day we were to leave, the bellboy put us on the wrong bus, and we ended up having to pay another 30 for the ride while we were on it, even though we had already paid. If we hadn’t had the money, I imagine we would have been dropped off in the middle of one of the scary neighborhoods we drove through. At the airport back in the states, my boyfriend and I both noticed a bunch of itchy bumps on our genital areas. Apparently whatever bugs bit our faces and our arms were crawling all over our most private parts while we were sleeping. I feel absolutely violated and disgusted by this fact. I am so disturbed, I can’t even sleep at night due to the itch and the emotional aspects of this. Just imagine yourself. We don’t even know if it was ants crawling on us, or some other type of bug. This hotel was supposed to be all inclusive, but unless you flashed cash, nobody could understand a word you say. But once they see the money, they are all fluent in french and english. The only nice thing I have to say about this trip was our dune buggy excursion. We booked it by the hotel, it was only $130 for both of us, and took us away from the hotel for about four hours. We rode dune buggies in town, on the beach, on on muddy paths, (you could avoid the muddy puddles if you wanted) we swam in a cave, on the beach, and visited a banana plantation. It was absolutely awesome. Only downfall were the kids begging. Of course, they had their little shops and jewelry stands set up at each pit stop, but the guy who booked our trip had already warned us of this. They went out of their way to get us coffee when we got there, all they had were sodas and beers, which they offered at no charge to all of us. They also offered us ice cold bottled waters during the excursion as well. This was a lot of fun and I recommend it to anyone. It was called Rancho Xtreme. All in All, I spent a lot of my vacation in tears, even when we got back to the states, since that is when we discovered that we weren’t only bringing back souveniers, but also some creepy crawly bites as well. Disgusting.
I am so glad to be home and I really ask that anyone think twice before booking at this hotel!! The bad thing about all this, is that I probably forgot to even mention everything bad here…. In the states, this hotel would have been shut down from lawsuits.