|Costa Caribe Coral||Louise-Andrée ~ Montréal|
February 2009 Definitely not a 4* but a good 3* Group
We were a group of 7 friends and we stayed there for one week. Arrival/Check-out
Check-in (and check-out) went very well. The very nice check-in people spoke French (that surprised me!), English and of course Spanish. Hotel
Very nice and clean. Very big complex. Very nice curb appeal. Rooms
Previous reviews were unrealistic. This is a hotel in a very humid third-world country. Some complaints were ridiculous about quality of rooms, etc. If you want Marriot quality like in the States or Canada, go and stay there. The rooms were clean, simple and had no bugs, no problems with locking the patio or front doors (as was reported in earlier reviews). No mini-fridge as reported in the publicity, however, just ask for one and they’ll deliver it. We had some mildew in the bathroom over the tub and around the fan (yuck!). Bring your shampoo and personal hygiene items. The shampoo was terrible and no conditioner was available. I have an unruly lion’s mane, so I need the good stuff! Restaurants and Bars
One buffet restaurant and three à-la-carte restaurants (Italian, Mexican and Dominican). We ate quite well at all three à-la-carte restaurants. I L-O-V-E-D the Mexican. What I liked very much at this hotel was that you did not have to wait in line in the morning to reserve in advance your seats in the à-la-carte restaurants. First arrived first served. Also, in the evening, even though there was a dress code at the à-la-carte restaurants, it was not really enforced, except if you wear gym clothes, then you’ll get turned away. There are plenty of bars for everyone around the grounds. For the price of the hotel , I was impressed that the drinks were not watered down and, with tips, almost no juice at all! (lol) Food
This is where the glitch was for me. The food was okay but not great. There was not enough variety, same four condiments/salads at lunch and dinner at the buffet restaurant every day, very limited choice in hot foods, very repetitious, I am not a meat stew eater with thick greasy sauce (there were a lot of stews) [this is why it is not a 4* for me]. However, at the grill of the main buffet restaurant (where they cook the eggs in the morning), there was great fish (if you like fish) and sometimes okay meat (way way too cooked for me; even if you asked rare or medium-rare, they still didn’t get it right). The pasta bar was great: two to three choices of sauces for the pasta. I’m a picky eater, but I did not go hungry. I did manage to find something to eat. Warning: Everything is very salty. Taste before adding salt! The food was the main complaint in my group and seemed to be the general consensus with those with whom we spoke. I don’t drink wine, however, my companions told me that the house wine was "disgusting" (quote-unquote). By the way, the WATER on the hotel site is ABSOLUTELY SAFE; not the one in the rooms though, as is very well explained in the bathrooms… they do provide you with 1 to 2 bottles each day in the rooms. The vegetables, salads, etc. are washed with filtered water. I usually get a little sick on any trip and I did not get sick here… Over the past few years, the management of these types of hotels put a lot of effort into making their premises safe for the tourists. I cannot complain about that. Beach/Pools/Grounds
Beautiful grounds, well maintained, no bugs. Nice beach, it is kept clean of algea in front of the hotel, however, it gets messy when leaving the general area of the hotel until the next hotel. Long beaches to walk on. Beautiful picture spots. The water is not cristal clear like in Cuba or not as turquoise but it was okay. The pools are fine, one for activities and two for relaxing. I did not use the pool(s), I was there for the beach, the ocean and the palm trees. Bugs
Like I said, not even a bug in the room. Very few on the beach. I am painfully allergic to the sandfly’s bite, however, there were none there. I saw a few critters here and there in the evening, they don’t bother you if you don’t bother them. Activities on and off the Resort
Plenty of organized activities on the grounds… We played volleyball and baseball. There were aerobics classes both in and outside the water at different times in the day, yoga, etc. There were also various group games organized on the beach. Tours: My friends took the Catamaran and snorkeling tour to Samala (I think) Island and said it was not worth the price they paid but said it was okay. I took the dune-buggy tour which takes you into the local sugarcane plantations and small villages for several hours. Sadly, in my opinion, it is not a real dune-buggy and more like a go-kart with big wheels. It was a fun and VERY BUMPY ride, even with the odd vehicle. Bring swimming goggles to cover your eyes, as the sunglasses they provide you DO NOT protect adequately from the dust emanating from the dune-buggy in from of you! Evening shows: Some were good, some were bad… it’s a matter of personal taste. Disco: We went there in the hopes to dance the Merengue, Salsa, Bachata… but there was only the pop/dance/hip hop music that the teens seem to enjoy so much… nothing for us 40-year-olds! The DJ was kind enough, upon request, to give us a few latin songs, but it did not last very long. Shopping
There is a small street separating the hotel grounds in two and there are plenty of gift shops. The prices are great. I was impressed with the quality of the jewelry and the T-shirts. Worth it. Note: You WILL be harassed by vendors on the beach. If you’re not interested, just say no thank you and they go away. However, they sell nice things, and if you’re interested, do bargain. It’s fun. Service
Service was terrible, even with tipping. There is one speed and it is "very slow". I understand we’re on vacation but there’s a limit. I am not complaining about attitude, they work hard, however, the clearing away of tables at the buffet was inadequate and slow… there were bizarre mix-ups at the Italian restaurant… whether at breakfast, lunch or dinner, we would run out of certain items and their reaction time was inadequate or sometimes nonexistent (in my opinion). Baby/Kids Club
I did not notice if here is one, I don’t think so; I did not see activities with kids. Overall impression
I do recommend this hotel if you’re not a picky eater. I do not recommend it for a two-week stay because of the food. It is a nice and clean hotel, very well-kept grounds, clean rooms, clean beach.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Brian and Leisa ~ Renfrew, Ontario, Canada|
February 2009 Arrival: Feb. 9-16
Arrival was good. All information, including card keys, towel cards and bracelet was provided on the bus, as well as map of the grounds, where room was etc. Very easy and convenient. Rooms
Room was standard room on second floor. Basic, but clean and everything worked well. Beds were comfortable. No complaints. Restaurants and Bars
Buffet served everything that you would eat at home. Beef, chicken, pork etc. fish, pasta, rice,potatoes done different ways including french fries, various fruits and veggies, and many types of desserts. Ate very well and had no complaints at all. Bars all staffed and service was good and friendly. Beach/Pools/Grounds
Beach was very nice. Sandy bottom and clean of excessive weeds etc. Pools were well maintained and full of swimmers, so they must have been good. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel
Took the tour to Santo Domingo. Reasonably priced and very informative. Stopped at a Dominican restaurant named El Conuco and had a traditional meal with music and dancers-absolutely great! Many other excursions offered. Animation staff always had people doing some kind of activity. Other Comments
First and foremost let me state that these type of all inclusive resorts are not luxury resorts. People get hung up on the star ratings ignorant of the fact that all that they mean is that they receive stars for many factors and that they meet certain criteria. If you want the Ritz, spend your millions and go to a luxury resort, otherwise accept the fact that by travel standards and Dominican standards this is a 4 star resort. We had a wonderful vacation at this resort. The staff was always helpful and friendly. Remember, kindness begets kindness. I saw people demand and order like the staff were personal servants. Not a way to get kindness in return. We were always treated well, and have many good memories of the staff all over the resort. Oh and by the way. Quit complaining about peddlers on the beach. They are all over the island , at every resort trying to make a buck. If you don’t want to buy from them, then all you have to say is "no gracias"! They will move on- get over it. My advice, just go and enjoy the warmth and beauty of the Caribbean and don’t fret the little things. If something pops up, just inform the front desk and it will be taken care of. Some people expect too much. Take it easy and just count your blessings that you can be in such a beautiful country, not missing winter back home. Have a pina colada and soak up some rays and relax.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Tamara ~ London, Ontario, Canada|
February 2009 Arrival: February 3 – 10
We arrived at approximately 6:00 a.m. There were only two representatives working at the check-in counter which was not surprising at that hour. The representatives had very little english which did make checking in a little difficult. The one serving us took us outside and sort of pointed to where our room was. Luckily, they do not allow you to take your own luggage so we waited and followed our bags to our room. Rooms
Our room was definitely not a 4 star room. When we arrived, the air conditioning was not on and the room was extremely hot and humid. The bell hop turned it on and some lights. It was a bit of a shock due to it’s condition, it was fairly clean but very old looking. We were on the first floor and anyone could have easily climbed onto our balcony. Thankfully the balcony door did lock at both ends. The curtain, however, did not come all the way across. There were no washcloths or handtowels in the room. In our room, the bathroom was divided – the toilet and tub in one area with a door and the sink on the other side of the door. There was only a small ceiling light in the toilet area and this made for very dark showers. We did not have a problem with hot water, but there was no water pressure. There was a sign on the lid of the toilet not to flush toilet paper but to put it in a waste basket beside the toilet. This was something we had not run into before, and I must confess we did not always follow this request, because the thought of not flushing the paper after a bowel movement wasn’t something we could do. The low water pressure caused you to have to flush two or three times to clear the waste. The lady who cleaned our room was very pleasant but did not speak any english at all, so we had difficulty getting the linens we needed. She also made beds differently than usual. Many times, we would find the sheets on sideways and nothing covering the mattress at our feet. The resort seems to have a shortage of bathroom linens because many days we were not supplied with any washcloths or two towels. One day we didn’t get a bath mat. We travelled with four other family members and they encountered the same problems in their rooms. On the positive side, we saw only one bug in our room and it was sprayed while we were there. Other problems we encountered: there was no refrigerator and when we enquired at the front desk, we were advised that we would only get one if one of us had a medical condition that required keeping medication cool. There were light fixtures in our room with no bulbs which made it very dim. Our television set did not work. We talked with the front desk about these problems two times with no results, so finally mentioned them to the representative of our Travel Company. We then got one light fixed, a refrigerator and a new television which did not work much better and had no hand control. The other thing we found annoying was the safe. It was probably 50 years old or older and you had to pay $24.00 to get the lock and key for it. So all in all, we found the room just passable but not what we expected in a four star resort. Restaurants and Bars
The buffet was very limited in choices. We ate breakfast there every morning. The omelettes or eggs were an everyday staple. No one went hungry but it was not what we expected of a four star resort. We tried lunch there one day, but there really was nothing we found palatable and, therefore, got in the habit of eating hot dogs and pizza at Mangoes (on the beach) everyday. The three specialty restaurants were great. We ate at all three (Mexican, Italian and Dominican) and enjoyed the food very much. Beach/Pools/Grounds
The beach was very clean and the water clear. We took advantage of the one hour a day free snorkeling equipment and found fish and sea urchins to watch everytime. There was a shortage of umbrellas and unless you lined up at 7:00 a.m. and fought the crowd you would not get one. There was an older man who worked the beach all day cleaning up garbage left behind by inconsiderate tourists. He would find you a lounge chair and drag it to where you wanted it and if he found a small table to hold you water or drinks he would also bring you one of them. We tipped him $1.00 and he tried really hard to make sure we had enough chairs for our group and two days even managed to get us an umbrella. The beach vendors are the same as other resorts I have been on. If you show no interest, they leave, but there are lots of them, so be prepared for some interruptions. If you purchase anything from one of them, I think they pass on the information and lots more will come to see you. The prices for the articles they were selling was cheaper than those same items sold on the beach in Punta Cana. We made friends with a few of them and they came just to visit us and gave us small gifts our last day there. I have no problem with vendors, this is how they make their meager living and anyone who travels to these resorts should be ready to be approached. A polite no is all they really need to hear. Pools – there are three of them. The main one is the newest and has a swimup bar. It has a beautiful waterfall feature and behind this is the jacuzzi. The pool was always clean and fallen leaves, glasses left by inconsiderate guests and any other debris were frequently removed. The jacuzzi was quite large and clean but too warm for my liking. There is a second pool a short distance away with a small bridge over it and another waterfall feature. It also has two small islands with palm trees and other vegetation decorating it- this pool is older than the main pool and has some cracks starting around the edges. There is a third pool across the road from the main lobby. There was no-one else there either of the two times we visited it. It was clean but very old and crumbly at the edges. Nice though to have a private pool and lounges. The grounds were nothing special. There were some flowering bushes, and everything appeared well maintained. Not the breath taking beauty I have experienced at other resorts though. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel
We went on a snorkeling tour offered by the hotel. They took us about 20 minutes down the beach and landed the boat. There was a coral reef only a brief swim out and the number of fish and sea creatures we saw was great for only $20.00 US per person. We swam for over an hour and the guide did not rush us to return to the boat. He did swim out with us at first to show us the best spots and brought a couple of baby star fish to the surface for us to see and hold. Two members of our party went on a horseback riding tour through a couple of small towns and along the beach and thoroughly enjoyed it. Other Comments
You know what you are getting when you enter the front lobby. Although the flooring and ceiling are beautiful, the walls need some repair. The only seating is wicker couches, with yellowed cushions and were not very comfortable.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Carol ~ Montreal|
February 2009 Arrival: Feb 2-9
After feeling we had been misled by GoTravel by reserving a 4* wildcard in "La Romana", then being driven out 1 1/2 hrs away from "La Romana" airport into Juan Dolio….we thought well, we’ll take a go at it…even though it wasn’t what we expected….the only thing that worked well was the check-in on the bus. Rooms:
Absolutely disgusting…after first being loaded into an elevator that the doors didn’t even close and really rusty, we were led down a maze of hallways that some didn’t even have any lighting (kinda of freaked me out!), to opening our door of a room that was pretty sparse, dirty, and had a moldy bathroom. We thought we’d make the best of it, but things started to go wrong and went worse. No water at all (toilet empty)….moldy tiles and dirty bathtub….air conditioner that leaked in the room and on the balcony (unusable), bed bugs (itched to death at night), TV that didn’t work (despite 3 different visits from staff)…To be honest, we go for south for the beaches not the rooms, but this was unacceptable for a 4*. Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet was 1.5*, decorations around the salad bar were dirty carrots and moldy cauliflower. Didn’t feel the refrigeration on the salads was sufficient as they were usually warm (MMMmmmm warm lettuce!)…and the few choices on the hot buffet were not really edible. Few meat choices….didn’t even want to venture there. We went to the Dominican restaurant one night and I ordered Boca Chica fish, and what they served was a batter coated fish, deep fried, slopped on a plate (head and all). I ate that while watching the waiter seat a local prostitute to a table to wait for her date. Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Wouldn’t go near the pool and there was algea all around the sides, and the water was cloudy, and full of sticks and dirty bottom. Beach was decent, but the vendors became a real pain, I disagree with a previous review that said they leave you alone if you say no…well we were bothered at least every 5 minutes (by the same guy!)….Apparently it is illegal to sell wares on the beach on this island…but you could see that the beach guards (yes some with guns) were being paid off. Then of course the prostitutes….it was the only show in the evening to watch, before all the outdoor bars closed at 11:00. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Didn’t hear or see anything but a game of horseshoes that was being played in a spot on the beach where a teenager just vomited (I’m serious). Other Comments:
After spending our 1st night we approached our tour rep and told her we wanted out….so we only had to spend 1 more night before arrangements could be made for a transfer to another hotel in "La Romana"….that’s a whole other review in itself as we didn’t feel that our comments or feedback were being taken seriously. It is the first 4* hotel in D.R. in the 7 other times we’ve been there that was so bad "to the extreme" When you would go in the lobby, there were guests constantly requesting change of room, or a repair etc, it didn’t make sense to us. So all in all DON’T GO, there are so many other hotels that go for the same price, even 3.5* would be better!
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Sue ~ Cornwall, Ontario|
February 2009 Arrival: January 26 – February 2
We had pre-registration and were given our room keys, towel cards, resort map, etc. on the bus from the airport. When we arrived at the resort a bellhop was ready to help us take our luggage to our room. Rooms: The rooms were modest, but clean and comfortable. I didn’t go to the Dominican to stay in my room!
There wasn’t a fridge in the room as described. But one was delivered shortly after I requested it.
Restaurants and Bars: The buffet was wonderful. Yes, there were black beans, mashed bananas and chicken livers at breakfast. But you are not forced to eat them!!!! There were also, French toast, pancakes, eggs and omelets cooked to your liking, meats, fresh fruit, cereals, yogurt , pastries and bread. There was always plenty of variety at the dinner buffet. Every night had a different theme, i.e. BBQ, Asian, Spanish, etc. One night dinner was served on the beach. Of course people complained about getting sand in their food. I didn’t see any sand in MY food! If you went hungry, then it was your own fault. Sant Fe Grill, the Mexican A la Carte restaurant was fantastic. The Mahi-mahi cooked in coconut milk and tequila was amazing!! Mangos, the snack bar served good pizza and had a good variety at lunchtime.
There was always plenty if great rum-based drinks at all the bars.
The beach was beautiful . Someone was always cleaning. There were plenty of beach chairs and umbrellas.Yes, there were vendors (as there are at most every resort I have been to) but if you told them you were not interested, they left you alone. However, you could get some great deals after bartering. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: We went on the Gran-Safari. It was not the greatest tour I have been on. But the highlight of the trip was lathering up with mud and showering it off under a waterfall. Wonderful. The nightly entertainment at the resort did not start until around 10 p.m. Of the 3 shows I saw , one was a fun night with audience participation . The other 2 were very well done with great dancers. There were aerobics in and out of the pool. Aqua Gym was great fun! We went to In Sense Spa for a Lava Shell Massage. It was one of the best massages I have ever had. The Spa was immaculate and the masseuse was polite and friendly. The prices were very reasonable.
There is a little strip mall down the road from the resort where you can get some great souvenirs…coffee, rum, wind chimes, t-shirts, etc.
Other Comments: After reading some of the other comments, I wasn’t sure that I had stayed at the same resort!!! I found the staff very friendly and happy to serve. I guess if you treat people right…you get treated right!! The grounds were well manicured and there were people constantly cleaning up glasses, etc that the guests left laying around.
All in all I got what I went for….sun, sand, fun. Not to mention some great rum drinks!!!!!
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Christy ~ Tillsonburg, Ontario|
January 2009 Arrival: Jan. 2008
Check in was extremely slow: we were not able to get into our room until later than we were told. Rooms:
Disgusting! Stains and holes on bedding, holes in wall, when people above us took a shower water ran into our bathroom, toilets do not flush (staff was extremely slow to fix it, and left a huge mess for us to clean up afterwards). Floors were rarely clean even after giving generous tips to maid. Everyone we talked to had the same problems. Walls are paper-thin: we got to listen to our neighbours fight all week (and yell at the front desk about their broken toilet). They wouldn’t move us to a different room. Restaurants and Bars:
Food is horrible. Thank god for the omelet guy at breakfast. It took me 2 weeks to feel better when I got home. Beach/Pools/Grounds:
We went over New Years and the beach was mostly closed off for 3 days for the celebration. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Hookers at the casino are very persistent. Other Comments: Don’t be fooled by the pictures; they were probably taken 15 years ago (the same time that it was rated a 4 star resort). This is NOT a 4 star resort.
Toilets at hotel are all bad. (It’s customary to not flush your toilet paper.) We got some money back after writing a letter of complaint to Sunwing. I DO NOT recommend this resort no matter what kind of deal you think you are getting.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Josee ~ Toronto|
January 2009 Arrival: April 7-14, 2008
I should have sent this review a very long time ago, however I was hesitant. I always feel as though people complain and are not satisfied with what they get, but I have travelled quite a bit and this place was beyond mad. I treat the locals with respect at all times and I never feel as though I expect the world of them, I have kept in contact with bartenders that I have met at different islands, but trust me at this resort, it definitely was not the case. The check in was fine, I got in line; my husband retrieved the luggage and golf clubs. We were taken to our room by a porter. Rooms:
The room was ok if mold around the tub doesn’t bother you. We did go a few days where we had no water to shower. We had just completed an ATV tour, we were covered in mud and we needed to shower. I got in, had water with little pressure, shampooed my hair and low and behold the water cuts out. So off we went to the ocean shower to wash up. WHAT A JOKE! Please keep in mind that this only happened when they allowed the locals to come in the resort and the place was busting at the seams. We also had a few days with no AC, but we managed and it was fine. Restaurants and Bars:
The food was good, no complaints there. We always wandered to the snack bar at 4am and he always made us fresh fries and pizza. The guys there were great. The bar service was very poor (except the bar in the lobby. The one guy there his name escapes me was FABULOUS!) The dominican restaurant was our favorite and the service was great. This is a resort that allows locals to spend there weekends there. Come Friday night, anything that remotely looked like good service was gone. As the locals speak their language and they were served the rest of us were not. The line ups at the restaurants and buffets were INSANE. It was like being in a completely different world. I am used to going to resorts where the bartenders pour sambuca on the bar and light it on fire. In Venezuela the bar closed early so the bartender would fill our water bottles with liquor. Well at this resort, if they feel as though they do not want to serve you, they don’t. You can be standing there for 15 minutes and its like you are non existant. The service at the sports bar was pathetic. I was cut off … YES CUT OFF! I like to drink tequila and it was not provided to me, but anyone else aound me who wanted it, no problem. If my husband ordered my drinks, I was served. It was ridiculous. One night, they told us they were out of tequila, therefore my husband went to the front desk and demanded we be served. After about 20 minutes of them telling us they were out of booze, my husband told them we were at an all inclusive with 6 bars (they wanted us to go to the casino and BUY IT!!!!) and they should make the effort, they did. We were sitting in the front lobby and they brought us a 40oz bottle of tequila (this was on day 6). Needless to say, we had a good night! Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The pools and beach were suitable. No complaints. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We ate at an italian restaurant in Juan Dolio. It was very expensive (70$ US) for my husband and I and trust me it was nothing to write home about. Don,t do it, it’s not worth the expense, cause the food at the resort is not bad at all. The golf was well worth it. Our caddy was fabulous, knowledgeable and it was the first time in my golfing years that I pared most holes (he really was that good at directing me even with the language barrier!) We tipped him well! Other Comments:
My husband was offered prostitutes on a daily basis "Hey amigo. You want a girl" ARE YOU KIDDING ME???? The young girls did not look older than 14 years old were lined up at the door of the resort!!!!! We were sold this resort as a HILTON!!!! Mr. Hilton would be embarrassed to have his name attached to this place given the situation it is currently in. So as a final note, would I go back? ABSOLUTELY NOT! If you don’t drink tequila, it may be a nice place for you. The weather was great, the food was good, the room just OK but some of the employees PATHETIC!
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Robert|
January 2009 First I’m not high maintenance nor do I have overly high expectations but good service consideration of culture and good manners go along way… which most staff have there We got back yesterday from CCC in Juan Dolio the 4 star beachfront resort with 1.5 star FOOD… weather was beautiful, the beach was not overly crowded and cleaner than Veradero a very pretty place with a great location… the garbage they called FOOD they served us was consistantly tasteless and just not palate friendly…if this place was as diligent about its culinary choices and whats being served as they are about its appearance it would truly be a 4 star resort and well worth the $$ and trip returning+++ however this was just the worst food we’ve experienced on our 4th trip to the D.R they keep it looking good always cleaning tidying and washing things the entrance into the facility and most dining areas are clean the trip but the food made this a huge disappointment…chicken livers and onions for breakfast next to mashed Banana ad Black beans are you kidding me??
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|Costa Caribe Coral||L ~ Virginia, USA|
June 2008 Rooms
As expected, the rooms were sub-par relative to what we are used to in the States. The sewage system could use some work–two days we went without water for a few hours. However, the rooms were cleaned thoroughly each day, and we had a GREAT view of the ocean. Just mention at check-in that you’d like a room with a view–the front desk is very accommodating. Restaurants
The food was decent–I have food allergies, so I stuck to staples like rice, potatoes, and fruit, which were always plentiful. The people I traveled with enjoyed the variety of food, and never complained of the quality. The Italian restaurant, open on weekends, was the best. And contrary to some of the opinions on this site, the wait staff was VERY friendly–you just have to be friendly first! Remember, this is their country and their livelihood. A smile goes a long way here. Bars
The bars were awesome! The sports bar, which was open 24 hours, had pool and foosball tables, as well as a dance floor. The swim-up bar and garden bar were also great, and the bartenders were friendly and fun. The drinks were always delicious–make sure to ask for an ‘especial’! Each bartender has his own. They will make anything you want extra-strong if you ask, and most will even take shots with you. Beach and Pools
The beach was absolutely beautiful. During the week there is practically no one on the resort (off-season), and you can walk down the beach for miles without seeing anyone in the water. The ocean in front of the resort is a calm tide pool formed by breaker rocks, which makes it nice for swimming and kayaking. Yes, there are vendors on the beach, yes they can get annoying at times–but if you aren’t interested in what they are selling, simply give a firm ‘No thank you’, and they will move on. We bought a lot of paintings and wooden sculptures as souvenirs; and if you barter with them, the vendors will give you a great deal (especially if you buy more than one). We got to know them pretty well, as we were some of the very few people staying on the resort during the off-season. We had a great time talking and joking with them. Sit back and enjoy the breathtaking scenery. Grounds
The grounds were beautiful and well-kept. And I dont think we saw a single bug the whole time we were there! Activities, Entertainment, Tours
I would definitely recommend trying as many activities as you can fit into your trip. On the second day of our week’s visit we went horseback riding (seemed a little sketchy at first–they take you way out into the country), but it ended up being an eye-opening and fun experience. (Our tour guide took us to ‘Indian’ caves on our ride!) Later in the week we went into Santo Domingo with a resort tour guide, Roberto. He took us to the colonial part of the city to see the markets and the cathedrals. We took public transportation–a bus–and got to see how the Dominican people really live. On the resort, we took advantage of some of the free activites–sailing, sea kayaking, snorkel lessons, etc. I would definitely recommend all of these excursions and activities; they are much more enriching than simply lying on the beach drinking cocktails (which was also fun..) Departure and Check Out
Check-in and check-out were simple and quick. We asked for a cab when we were leaving, and it was there within 2 minutes. We did not check any bags, only carried backpacks as carry-ons. I would definitely recommend doing this–it saves a lot of time and hassle through the Santo Domingo airport. Conclusion
This resort is definitely for the laid-back, easy-going traveler. It is great for groups of friends and as a casual couples getaway. If you are high-maintenance and need for everything to be perfect and uniform when you are away from home (which it sounds like many of the reviewers on this site are..) then this is probably not the place for you. Dominicans are extremely friendly and chill, and it is very easy to make friends with the resort staff at Coral. There is always lots to do here; but if you are seeking relaxation, there are tons of nooks and crannies on the resort that are quiet and perfect for downtime. Have a drink and relax!
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Johanne|
June 2008 This was our third time traveling to the Dominican Republic but the first time to the South Coast. We arrived at La Romana airport and traveled about 1 hr to the resort. I had read the reviews so I was aware that this resort had some issues. Beware..This is certainly NOT a 4* property, 3 maybe! I was shocked at the litter and garbage everywhere from the airport to the hotel. I had seen it before in the DR but never this bad. We are not ones to complain and we fully appreciate that this is a third world country and the standards are not what we might expect at home but we expect to get what is advertised and this property didn’t even come close. We found this whole area run down. You didn’t get that lush tropical feel. The vegetation is very dry and burnt with few flowers and greenery. The beach, however, was beautiful with long stretches of sand both ways but the palm trees on the beach are under developed and there is no palpas so shade is an issue. There were always plenty of loungers but don’t turn your back on your towels …they will be gone. This happened to us numerous times through the week. We were traveling with a large group, some with children and more than half of us had to shift rooms due to water or septic issues. Ultimately the room we ended up with was ok, nothing special but fine. Beds were clean and made up each day with enough towels but I would still question the overall cleanliness. The mattress was on a concrete slab. I like a firm mattress but after a couple of restless nights I would dread going to bed. We had two bottles of water, sometimes three in the room each day but never anything in our mini fridge. We always left the maid a tip and a few items each day: slippers, jewelry, nail polish, personal care items etc. Our balcony door wouldn’t lock but we didn’t worry too much since we were on the fourth floor. The toilets are very poor to flush and the water pressure is so bad in some rooms you are not even able to have a shower. When we would open our door each morning and the smell of sewer gas was overwhelming. This hotel is experiencing major septic issues and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that it is shut down before long for that very reason. The hotel is dated and is in need of many, many repairs! The property itself is nicely laid out and close to the beach and restaurants, however, the hotel is divided by a main street so we didn’t feel very secure. The locals use the property on the weekends and I found them to be rude and disrespectful. We had a large family on the beach loungers next to us one day with two small babies. They changed the babies and they just threw the diapers wide open on the beach and left them there. I don’t know why this surprised me considering all the litter and garbage that we had seen on the way to the hotel but I found that disgusting. There is a small market just a few minutes from the hotel and the street is lined on both sides with garbage.You would think that the Resort staff would clean that up considering it is a pedestrian path to the market at least. I found that staff waited on you because they had to but for no other reason, they were not friendly and obliging at all. In fact, we got a sense that they didn’t like us (tourists) much especially when the locals came to use the resort. There was one exception… Cesar at the lobby bar, he was really nice and always happy and enjoyed having a little chat. The locals knew the resort staff so when they arrived they were served first and we would often be ignored for long periods of time while waiting at the bar etc. This was my first experience with day use guests on the resort and I really wasn’t comfortable with that whole concept. We found the service was poor in the restaurants, even the A la Cartes. The Italian was extremely slow, the Dominican was ok as well as the Santa Fe Grill. they were basically the only times you would be served a drink with your meal. After days and days of the buffet with the same food and very few new options it was nice to have a serviced meal just the same. We tipped at the A la Cartes as well but in my opinion it didn’t make any difference. Overall the food was ok but just ok! No one ever went hungry and much of the food was a matter of personal taste but again we just were not confident on how clean things were, especially at the beach snack bar. The beach vendors became extremely annoying after a few days. We gave them shirts, shorts, caps and children’s items just so they would leave us alone but each time you would sit down they would be back. The first day or two was fun , bartering etc. but by the end of your vacation you just wish they would disappear. Day after day of the same items, sarongs, hair braiding, cigars, jeweler, hats, paintings, music, wood carvings, sunglasses, excursions…then each night they would set up a market between the lobby and the pool area so if you wanted to buy something you could have a look then so we could have enjoyed a bit more quiet time on the beach. In ending…we made this the best it could be considering our thoughts on the resort and staff. I would be lying to say that I wasn’t disappointed in the resort…I was but overall we enjoyed our week. The weather was great, the beach was nice, we had a lot of laughs with friends so it was the company that made it all worth while. I wouldn’t go back to this resort again…in fact I would not suggest it to others. There is a lot to be said for a few extra hundred dollars to bring up the standard to what we would expect while traveling. Next time I would take a better look at what is available and stick to a reputable chain. We have stayed at the Bahia Principe properties before and had that "Wow" experience. I would go back to them again. I realize how fortunate we are to have the opportunity to travel on vacations and one of the things we have enjoyed most about traveling is giving back to the people who are less fortunate so this vacation was no different…but..I do like my resort to feel safe, comfortable and clean and this one just didn’t measure up.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Kathy ~ Canada|
April 2008 Rooms
musty smelling,black mold on folds of shower curtians,water and sewer problems ,balcony doors with no screens and did not lock,fridge was old and rusty and was unstocked unless you count the brick of ice that was in the freezer that melted and ran out onto the floor,could see daylight around the air conditioner.The towels and sheets were clean but i did not look beneath the mattress pad as i had to stay there for a week. Restaurants
Buffet had a very poor selection of food.Al a Cartes were closed for most of our stay.Open one minute and closed the next.24 hour snack bar left a lot to be desired in the cleanliness area. Beach and Pools
Beach was a major disappointment.The water was clean but you only would go in to your thighs and then it was full of eel grass.Most of the sand on the beach was man-made(ground up rock mixed with some unknown substance)Beach chairs were filthy.The huts shown in the travel book and online were non existant…There were none!!!!!Most of the palm trees were topless(no shelter there).Certianly not what would be expected at a five star beach!!! Grounds
Activities and Entertainment Golfing was not as advertised.Paid $90 us for one cart plus mandatory caddie fee to golf on a course that was completely burned and brown Tours
Tour to Sanoma Island with Evans (our tour guide)was a fun day.The Island was beautiful,with sand and trees like we expected on our resort. Departure and Check Out
No problems Conclusion
In all this resort was a big disappointment and i feel we were falsley informed by the ratings.I realize that we were in a third world country but what we recieved and what was advertised was entirely different.This resort definately needs to be re-rated.Leo,the Sunwing representive was helpful and made room changes happen without problems.He was available to us for assistance when needed.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Lisa ~ Toronto|
April 2008 I was very nervous about what the rooms would be like after reading some of the negative reviews on this site. Let me tell you, everything was wonderful! We can’t wait to go back here. The good experience started at the front desk upon check-in. We were served a cold slushy lime drink, which I was paranoid about drinking. After two days, I realized the water, ice, salads, were all safe. We did not get a sick stomach from anything. The lobby is beautiful…opens to the outside and very welcoming. we were checked in quickly. We were in the main C block, the room was fine, not fancy but our airconditioner worked and we had hot water all the time. I heard that the S block rooms were bad, but we lucked out. The beds are hard, unfortunately. However, we could live with that. The view was onto the main courtyard overlooking the pool and the main buffet restaurant. Palm trees right up to the window. Lovely! Restaurants
The good was great! Try the steak in the tex-mex restaurant and the flank steak, gnocci and chicken linguine in the Italian. The omlettes and the bacon were great in the buffett restaurant for breakfast. I worried that my kids would hate the food but they always found something. The open air grill by the beach is great for lunch..pizza, grilled chicken, hotdogs, etc. You eat at tables right near the beach. Line up before the places open at 6:30 or you may need to wait in line for a while. You get spoiled by having hot food at your fingertips all day long. Bars
My one complaint is the liquor is poor quality. The wine is like apple juice. Bring your own if you care. Beach and Pools
The beach is clean, water is calm and warm. We hardly ever used the pools because the ocean is so swimmer-friendly. Absolutely gorgeous…like a postcard. We got used to putting our towels on the chairs in the shade, because it really is super hot and after an hour you will burn. Grounds
Always kept clean. If you want to buy souvenirs, forget getting them onsite. Go down the street to a strip mall. For coffee — we paid $2 US for a pound, while the hotel shop charges $5. T-shirts are also available at the strip mall for $5 US and you can also get cheap vanilla there. Not much more worth buying..the rum is good to bring back as a souvenior or gifts also. Activities and Entertainment
Could use better entertainment at night. People really want to keep busy after dinner but there were limited things to do, unless you want to try the casino or watch kids play musical chairs on the main stage. My teenage son enjoyed the disco with a group of other teens he met. The beach is safe at night if you want to sit by the ocean. I always felt safe here…really good security. Tours
You must go to the day trip to Santa Domingo to see the architecture and experience life there. The bus drive alone lets you see the sites. We went horse back riding, which was a mistake although maybe others liked it. It is scorching hot here and three hours in the gruelling sun was not fun. Departure and Check Out
No issues Conclusion
We can’t wait to come back!!! the weather was hot and sunny EVERY day. But don’t expect perfection…and you will be pleasantly surprised. Remember to bring a lot of $1 in American bills for tips, otherwise you will be caught short and will overtip with large bills. Tip often…the people deserve it and work really hard. Bring all the toiletries you can, there is no place to buy them here or they are very costly. Bring extra that you can leave behind in the room. Bring chewing gum, etc. for the local kids if you are going on tours. Also, you can’t overdo it on sunscreen.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Sharon ~ Canada|
April 2008 This was our third time traveling to the Dominican Republic but the first time to the South Coast. We arrived at La Romana airport and traveled about 1 hr to the resort. I had read the reviews so I was aware that this resort had some issues. Beware..This is certainly NOT a 4* property, 3 maybe! I was shocked at the litter and garbage everywhere from the airport to the hotel. I had seen it before in the DR but never this bad. We are not ones to complain and we fully appreciate that this is a third world country and the standards are not what we might expect at home but we expect to get what is advertised and this property didn’t even come close. We found this whole area run down. You didn’t get that lush tropical feel. The vegetation is very dry and burnt with few flowers and greenery. The beach, however, was beautiful with long stretches of sand both ways but the palm trees on the beach are under developed and there is no palpas so shade is an issue. There were always plenty of loungers but don’t turn your back on your towels …they will be gone. This happened to us numerous times through the week. We were traveling with a large group, some with children and more than half of us had to shift rooms due to water or septic issues. Ultimately the room we ended up with was ok, nothing special but fine. Beds were clean and made up each day with enough towels but I would still question the overall cleanliness. The mattress was on a concrete slab. I like a firm mattress but after a couple of restless nights I would dread going to bed. We had two bottles of water, sometimes three in the room each day but never anything in our mini fridge. We always left the maid a tip and a few items each day: slippers, jewelry, nail polish, personal care items etc. Our balcony door wouldn’t lock but we didn’t worry too much since we were on the fourth floor. The toilets are very poor to flush and the water pressure is so bad in some rooms you are not even able to have a shower. When we would open our door each morning and the smell of sewer gas was overwhelming. This hotel is experiencing major septic issues and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that it is shut down before long for that very reason. The hotel is dated and is in need of many, many repairs! The property itself is nicely laid out and close to the beach and restaurants, however, the hotel is divided by a main street so we didn’t feel very secure. The locals use the property on the weekends and I found them to be rude and disrespectful. We had a large family on the beach loungers next to us one day with two small babies. They changed the babies and they just threw the diapers wide open on the beach and left them there. I don’t know why this surprised me considering all the litter and garbage that we had seen on the way to the hotel but I found that disgusting. There is a small market just a few minutes from the hotel and the street is lined on both sides with garbage.You would think that the Resort staff would clean that up considering it is a pedestrian path to the market at least. I found that staff waited on you because they had to but for no other reason, they were not friendly and obliging at all. In fact, we got a sense that they didn’t like us (tourists) much especially when the locals came to use the resort. There was one exception… Cesar at the lobby bar, he was really nice and always happy and enjoyed having a little chat. The locals knew the resort staff so when they arrived they were served first and we would often be ignored for long periods of time while waiting at the bar etc. This was my first experience with day use guests on the resort and I really wasn’t comfortable with that whole concept. We found the service was poor in the restaurants, even the A la Cartes. The Italian was extremely slow, the Dominican was ok as well as the Santa Fe Grill. they were basically the only times you would be served a drink with your meal. After days and days of the buffet with the same food and very few new options it was nice to have a serviced meal just the same. We tipped at the A la Cartes as well but in my opinion it didn’t make any difference. Overall the food was ok but just ok! No one ever went hungry and much of the food was a matter of personal taste but again we just were not confident on how clean things were, especially at the beach snack bar. The beach vendors became extremely annoying after a few days. We gave them shirts, shorts, caps and children’s items just so they would leave us alone but each time you would sit down they would be back. The first day or two was fun , bartering etc. but by the end of your vacation you just wish they would disappear. Day after day of the same items, sarongs, hair braiding, cigars, jeweler, hats, paintings, music, wood carvings, sunglasses, excursions…then each night they would set up a market between the lobby and the pool area so if you wanted to buy something you could have a look then so we could have enjoyed a bit more quiet time on the beach. In ending…we made this the best it could be considering our thoughts on the resort and staff. I would be lying to say that I wasn’t disappointed in the resort…I was but overall we enjoyed our week. The weather was great, the beach was nice, we had a lot of laughs with friends so it was the company that made it all worth while. I wouldn’t go back to this resort again…in fact I would not suggest it to others. There is a lot to be said for a few extra hundred dollars to bring up the standard to what we would expect while traveling. Next time I would take a better look at what is available and stick to a reputable chain. We have stayed at the Bahia Principe properties before and had that "Wow" experience. I would go back to them again. I realize how fortunate we are to have the opportunity to travel on vacations and one of the things we have enjoyed most about traveling is giving back to the people who are less fortunate so this vacation was no different…but..I do like my resort to feel safe, comfortable and clean and this one just didn’t measure up.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Jan ~ Manitoba,Canada|
April 2008 My husband and I just returned from a vacation in the Dominican Republic with Sunwing .Our destination was Coral Costa Caribe. What a marvelous time we had. I don"t understand the folks who have written negative reviews. We really enjoyed the resort . From the time our sunwing representative LEO met us to our ride to the resort . We enjoyed every minute. The resort is beautiful, the grounds immaculate , our room was clean and sufficient with a queen size bed ,a pull- out couch and table and chairs. We had air conditioning and the maids kept our room spotless- no bugs . The water pressure was not great at certain times of the day,yes the showers were refreshing.,but then the temps were hot so we did’t mind.We did not purchase the safe and experienced no theft. We did tip our maid everyday.The first day we even left her tip on the table, but she did not take it .So the next day we made a point of handing the tip to her. The restaurants were great , the service good and the food delicious.The staff was awesome and helpful. We fell in love wiith the people they were always positive and cheerful. The hotel also had elevators, which I understand some of the newer resorts do not have. The beach was beautiful and clean. There were a few vendors on the beach but they were not bothersome. The pools are beautiful with waterfall . They were kept clean and they weren’t crowded. We will definitely go back next year. We are bringing family members with us. We will also fly Sunwing their service was excellent.,with hot towels to hot meals and movies on the plane . They offered champagne as we bordered to toast our vacations, free wine with meals,soft drinks ,coffee and tea. A SUNWING rep. met us at the airport and was available at the resort for questions the full week we were there. We truly had a great relaxing holiday and were more than satisfied with the service we received.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Sheldon|
March 2008 We just got back from the Coral Costa Caribe and it was very impressing. Its great for everyone. I was there with a group of nine. 5 kids ranging from 7-15 and 4 adults. The younger kids had a great time swimming in the pool and being at the "Kids Club" where they can play and the older ones loved being around the beach. The beach is beuatiful and the pools are great. Also, although there was picky eaters with us, we all loved the food. Definatley some of the best I’ve ever eaten. There is 4 resturants at night, I reccommend them all. For breakfast, there is the buffet, which is very good, they serve omlets, pancakes, bacon, french toast, sausage and fruit as well as more Dominican type food. For lunch We always ate at Mangos which serves pizza, fries, burgers, hot dogs, and some pasta. Everything there was really good. The rooms aren’t 5 star, but they’re all that you need. Majority are only there to sleep anyways.Yes, there may have been a few little ants, but its Dominican, what did you expect. They’re certainly not that bad. But a tip for the maids may help, they will give you more towels, etc. More advice however: use the safe. The maids sometimes mistake things, thinking your leaving it for them, So for anything important, put it in. The staff and people though, are great. They’re extremly friendly. Plus they always have activities up during the day and night. During the day its aerobics, water polo and games, at night they will *sometimes* put on a great dancing shows but other nights just funny participating shows. We all loved it here, although we were nervous because of some unnessecary bad reviews. If your going, make the best of it and have a great trip! We sure did. Also, be prepared at the beach, many people will try to get you to buy things. They may push a little but just say No and they wil leave you alone.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Michael|
We stayed there and I was not really impressed. The service was offered with polite annoyance and if you tried to speak Spanish it made matters worse. Do not depend on the bank machines for pesos. They were out 4 of the 7 days we were there. The room was OK but the lock on the sliding door was broken, AC did not work and depending on the day you may get water in your room or not. The food was average ( I eat anything) but very repetitive. The evening " entertainment" was not what I would call entertainment. Free draught as far as the eye can see but no bottled beer with all inclusive and cheap rum as well. I will not be going back.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Harvey ~ Ottawa, Canada|
March 2008 Stayed here for 2 weeks-Feb.11-25th,2008. Harvey-Ottawa,Canada. I too read some very bad reviews of this place before I went there, but this was my 8th trip to the DR, and I know that you can’t always go by what others say. The more recent reviews posted here are more accurate, and they both say that this hotel is not a 5 star hotel, and don’t expect it to be. It is a lovely hotel right on the beach which we walked for hours in both directions. The 3 pools are all very clean and lovely settings with waterfalls and swim-up bars. The buffet is very adequate depending on how fussy you are, but we never had a problem finding plenty of food to eat. The 3 A la Carte restaurants were all very nicely furnished and nice locations. We visited them all, and loved the Italian one and the Dominican restaurants the best. The food there was really great. All in all, we ate at the restaurants 7 times out of the 14 days we spent there. The rooms were comfy and fit in to the hotel style and a poor third world country. We did not have hot water a couple of times, but we managed just the same. The staff were quite nice and friendly, and the room was cleaned nicely each day. A little tip here and there goes a long way and is very much appreciated. I will try to answer any questions on this hotel or another if I stayed there. Just email me email@example.com Thanks.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Randy ~ Sudbury, Ontario|
February 2008 I stayed at this place feb 14 to 21 2008. No hot water or water preasure food was ok but limited selection service staff were good bugs in rooms and cracks around air conditioning unit
THIS IS NOT A 5 STAR HOTEL MAYBE 2 STAR
WILL NOT STAY HERE EVER AGAIN
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Crayton ~ Kincardine, ON, CA|
February 2008 Rooms – We opted to go (as advised by our travel agent) with the superior (ocean view) room, which was great. Nice view overlooking the main portion of the resort, the main pool, some palm trees, and the ocean. Beds were fine, Rooms cleaned everyday, so our maid "Mercedes" took very good care of us, as we also returned the favour leaving her a small tip (2$ US) each day along with some extras from home (toothpaste, colouring books, crayons, pencils, deodorant, etc.) Our Balcony was very nice too, smoked a few cigars out there after some long days in the sun. The water in the shower ran cold a few times, and you know what, WHO CARES! We were in a 4-star hotel in a third-world country where the temperature everyday was well over 100 deg. A cold shower was refreshing in my opinion. All-in-all, I was quite satisfied with the room. In saying that, nothing to write home about, but again, 4 star hotel people, not 5 star! Restaurants – Buffet was awesome, the hotel themed most of the dinners (i.e. italian, chinese). This is what it seemed anyways. The breakfasts and lunches were good too. I mean, we stayed away from some of the food, but I do that when I go to a buffet in Canada as well! Italian Restaurant – "Rigoletto" AMAZING! We went there 3 nights that week, and they remembered us each time. We received speedy service, and our food came out lightning quick, I’m not kidding. From what other guests had told us, we would be in for some decent food, but we would have to wait. Well, I guess we got lucky with the speed of service… 3… times… ? I honestly don’t know what people expect when they travel to these places. I also tipped very well at this restaurant, I went around to everyone who came to our table during our meal and tipped them personally. One night I think I tipped 5 people in there. 2$ to 4 of them, and 5$ to our main server. We went to the Sante Fe restaurant (The Mexican themed restaurant) and this may have been the only restaurant we were not impressed with, but it was our fault. You have to be careful what you order, and we made a mistake. Overall, we were quite impressed with the food and the restaurants. The hostesses and servers were very hospitable, food enjoyable. Bars – Bars were great. Barely ever have to wait for a drink. Tip every now and again, but you really don’t have to. Beer "Presidente" was awesome. I would buy that back home if I could. Pina Coladas, Banana Mamas, Daquiris, rum and cokes, all went down quite nicely over the week. All I can say is learn how to order a drink! say "cerveza por favor" or pina colada with rum! or with white rum! They will understand. I found sometimes people would expect the bar tenders to understand what they were telling them in english, and as a matter of fact, most would. Remember you are in THEIR country, english is not their mother tongue. If you take a step back, you’ll soon realize that they can speak bits of english and french much much better than most guests there can speak any sort of spanish. Beach and Pools – Beach was absolutely beautiful. It was well raked every day (I guess), I mean, it was always nice when we went down. There’s a lot of people at this resort, sometimes it can be difficult to find beach chairs, but keep looking. As long as there are no towels or other belongings on them, they’re fair game! There are many vendors that are on the beach trying to sell goods (cigarettes, hair braiding, hats, necklaces, etc.) They’re not all that bad. We bought a few items from them, sometimes its fun to barter with them, and to see what they have to offer. The best is the guy selling coconuts, oranges, and pineapples. He walks the beach saying "coco coco coco coco" For a few dollars he’ll crack you open a coconut, pop a straw in it, and cut out the coconut from the top so you can eat it. Well worth trying in my opinion. Grounds – The ground were well-maintained. Maintenance employees were always out sweeping and picking up. I thought they did a good job. Activities – The activities were pleantiful, as long as you were willing to participate. The "Chocolate Friends" – who amazingly have their own theme some, kept the guests well entertained. They did step aerobics on the beach and in the pool throughout the day, they did water polo, and volleyball. I like playing volleyball, but it’s very windy in the dominican, so this makes a game difficult, and everybody looks like a beginner. We went paddle boating for a short time one day, but you could also try going out in a small sailboat or windsurf. At extra cost, you could also try the banana boat ride. The staff also ran other activites throughout the day as well to keep guests entertained. They had darts on the beach, baci ball, they had a beer-drinking contest one day, etc. They would also put on a show each night, although seemingly unessessary choreographed dances and such, the shows were entertaining nonetheless. We went to every one. The chocolate friends were good to the guests, spoke french and english quite well, and always had smiles on their faces. Tours – There were many tours offered, such as a tour into santo domingo for the day, snorkelling at a place called catalina island, you could try a 4-wheeler tour, or as we did, go horseback riding. It was just the 2 of us and our guide. I would highly recommend the horse back riding. Conclusion – This resort was great. The bad – the hotel is outdate, and I really could care less. The water ran sometimes cold in the shower, again, not a big deal. I guess some people would think this is a big deal, and if you are one of these people, don’t go to a 4-star resort in a third-world country, pay the money and go to a 5-star or go to hawaii. Now the good – Food was great, people were friendly and hospitable, beach was beautiful, Activities and tours were pleantiful.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Scott & Dawn|
February 2008 Hi Debbie, I stayed at this hotel from February 12, 2008 to February 19, 2008. I must say, after I purchased the trip I decided to investigate the hotel, it was a nightmare, the reviews I read were horibble. Needless to say I was terrified, but we went none the less. We flew into Punta Cana, a 3 hour drive from the airport to the hotel, not the hotels fault but still don’t go to that airport. Santa Domingo is closer. First, I want to say, most of the reviews I have read are from poeple who could never be satisfied any where they went. The food was great, a bit of a wait at the restaurants, but your at the dominican on vacation, if you want fast food go home….. Second, the room was clean and there were no bugs, the hotel has the building fumigated once a week to prevent this. Some cute little lizards wonder around at night but they are cute and harmless. I brought 2 big cans of raid that I didn’t use, not once. Third, this is a poor 3rd world country, the children truly do appreciatte books and crayons, gum, band-aids are a big help. The smiles and thanks are so worth it…. Leave the maids a little something everyday they appreciatte it and you will get better service. When you check out, leave the staff everything you possibly can in the room. Fourth, go to Happy Horse horse back riding, $30.00 american each person but its by far the very best deal for 4 hours of riding, you go to the sugar cane fields and you visit the indian cave and its amazing. You also get to see the way alot of the locals live , this is where you will see alot of children so have gifts $1.00 bills, gum and anything else, made me cry how grateful they were. The snorkelling was awesome and cheap. Fifth, the chocolate friends(they call themselves this), Ramon, Mr Bombam, we thank you for everything you all do there to make our stay great. The shows are good and entertaining. The sports bar make the very best banana momma’s. Pina Colada’s also rock. The vendors, what ever their selling divide it by half and add 2 dollars, they love to barter. I never ever paid for anything full price. Luis at front desk was amazing and very friendly. We wanted 2 extra pillows that first night and we got them within 15 min. Get the saftey deposit box its $3.50 a day but believe me it’s worth it. So….. yes I will absolutly go back to this hotel and next time I will be bringing my parents and my 4 kids. So if you have read all the reviews that I had, take it from me go yourself and judge for yourself. Believe me I was expecting the worse, I was actually looking for it, I didn’t find it. Leo at sunwing, what’s up buddy. I hope this helps to make the wait for your vacation a good one, remember to think to yourself, you’re going to have a good time and then you will. The Very Satisfied Canadians
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Ivory ~ USA|
Make sure you fly into the Santo Domingo airport, which is a 30-45 minutes away from the resort.
The rooms are not in the same zip code of a four star hotel. Our first room had dirty curtains, bed covers and bathtub. The mattresses were not level and the room did not have central air. Instead, it was a unit you put in the wall, except there was a one inch gap between the air-condition unit and the wall, which provided an uninvited view of the ocean. The second room had central air, but no hot water. We didn’t have hand towels and the tub was not clean. The head board was not connected to the bed frame and the mattress squeaked anytime you moved. Had the rooms been up to par, the resort would have been fine.
There are enough bars, but they do not have top shelf liquor. If you want GM in your Cadillac marguerite, forget about it. Otherwise, it’s easy to get a drink, even if you have to get up. I figured if I couldn’t stand up to get a drink, I didn’t need it, which happened every now and then. There is no problem with the cocktails.
They’ll make you an omelet and the potatoes are good. Other than that, you’re on your own for breakfast. Do not eat the cheese, even if somebody bets you a substantial sum of money, because it is two-toned, like they way cars were painted in the 1970’s. I don’t know about lunch, because we snacked on a little pizza here and there. For dinner, you have to get the beef tenderloins at the Italian restaurant or the burritos at the Mexican spot. Overall, food was average.
The employees were very nice. It always helps if you can speak a little Spanish, although they don’t seem upset if a foreigner can’t speak the language. The people of Dominican Republic are also very poor, so if you give tips, they become even nicer. Everywhere I went they said “hola amigo” because I made sure I tipped everyone. Coming from a wealthy nation, I felt obliged to do it, although that’s a personal choice. The people were nice.
Just because they were nice doesn’t mean the service was good as it pertained to our room. I thought “veinte minutos” was Spanish for “twenty minutes”. Apparently it means “we’ll get to it when we can”.
The beach was awesome, there are plenty of chairs and the water is beautiful, just don’t step on the seaweed. People constantly try to sell you things, but I would do the same thing if I had a tin roof and no running water at home. I would just say no papi (mami), no gracias or no me gusta and that was that.
This place is their Atlantic City, so it gets crowded on the weekend. This fact saved me the trouble of walking outside the resort to find out for myself what the people were like. Dominicans are no different than anywhere else: most are very nice and some are rude. They added to my experience.
This resort is not connected in any way to Hilton, who pulled their money out after they took big profits. I learned this from the locals.
I wouldn’t stay here again under any circumstances because I like hot showers, a comfortable bed and a clean room. I had a decent time, but the rooms are a train wreck. More importantly, my girlfriend had a difficult time with the amenities in the room, and if she’s not happy, well, you get the point.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Canada|
On March 23-30, 2007, I stayed at the Costa Caribe Coral, Juan Dolio. I booked it, because of Hilton being attached/advertised to the property. The following is an itemized account of my experience at said property.
Room 1: damp and moldy (1st day)
Room 2: cockroaches, no working toilet, no hot water (1st – 4th day), bug spray all over me physically by the attendant spraying my room while I was standing in it as well as all my clothes, etc. (4th day) Room 3: No power (5th day) Room 4: Mattress soaked with water, no hot water (5th day-6th day). Mattress changed (6th day), no hot water, which I could live with given the severity of the host of problems
Half of day 6 and all of day 7 satisfactory; left early (8am) day 8.
Out of an 8 day stay, only 1 ¾’s of it was satisfactory.
Additionally, on Day 1 (Friday), I complained of a large amount of vomit floating in the main pool. It took four hours and my asking several staff to clean the pool and my going to the General Manager, Tomas, for the pool to be cleaned!
I spent on average two hours each day (day 1-6) dealing with hotel staff: guest services, reception, management, registration and Hosea, Sunquest representative. It was not until Monday evening (day 4) where I requested a transfer to your other property, Costa Coral Hulmaca, before I was moved to rooms 3 and 4. I should have been moved to your sister property immediately; however, no assistance was forthcoming until the end of day 4 and then the two new rooms proved troublesome as detailed above.
In short, warn your friends to NOT GO THERE!!!!
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Location: Beach front – Juan Dolio – South Coast Costa Caribe Coral March 19th – April 3rd
I was sold this holiday as a Hilton hotel, however Hilton dropped their name from this hotel 6 months ago. I have since learnt that a Spanish hotel is looking to take over this resort. We flew to Punta Cana and it took almost three hours to arrive at Costa Caribe – after a 9 hour flight it wasn’t expected that the transfer would take this long. Once we arrived at the hotel, late Dominican time, we went to look at the room which really was very basic, it looks nothing like the pictures on the websites. The bathrooms are really awful and desperately need updating. The water for the shower was freezing cold most days. If you ring and complain they do try to give you hot water but can take a couple of hours for it to come on. There is a balcony for all the rooms, I stayed in a room on the 4th floor that sort of overlooked the beach. There are a few bugs in the room but we didn’t come across cockroaches.
All that aside, you spend very little time in your room and if you can put that to one side the actual surrounding resort is lovely. What made up for the poor hotel was the staff in and around the resort. They have what they call the Chocolate Team, your chocolate friends and they are always happy to talk to you or provide daily entertainment such as water polo, water aerobics, volley ball, dancing and the show entertainment they provide in the evening. They also have a sports bar with pool tables and football tables with a nightclub in the back that plays their local meringue music, R&B and general up to date music.
The beach is really close to the resort, there are several restaurants to choose from each evening, we found the Italian was the best (good steak) and you do not need to worry about water, salads etc, the food is very good here. But do bring some Imodium because the food contains a lot of salt and is a lot heavier than food you have back at home.
There is a pool bar but you can’t use it as a pool bar, you have to get out and get your drinks then come back in to the pool. There are lots of people trying to sell you items on the beach from Sarongs, Cigars, Sunglasses, wood ornaments – they are all just trying to make a living and if you don’t want to buy just say no thank you and they will leave you alone.
There is a Casino that you can venture off to in the evenings however your all inclusive band doesn’t allow you to get free drinks here.
There are excursions they sell such as horse riding, fishing trips and a trip to Saona Island which we went on. We traveled on a catamaran but it poured with rain which wasn’t fun but the afternoon on the island was fun, they provide lunch and then you travel back on a speed boat which is the best part. They only provide Rum and Coke on the Catamaran so if you like beer you will have to take your own (provided free in your fridge in your room). We saw some star fish and the island was very beautiful but you need to have a good day of weather for this trip. It cost us $64 per person and we purchased the trip within the resort near reception.
If you venture out of the resort then do hire a moped or get a lift on one from the locals that will cost you 100 peso’s one way. There is a mini market which sells souvenirs, food and drink which is just 5 minutes walk away and if you carry on to the top of the road there are some night clubs, restaurants and bars. We walked up here and saw all the other hotels that are just being built/finished along this stretch of the coast and if you are going to spend you money traveling to the Dominican then stay at Hotel Capella – it’s a 5*, beautifully decorated but the entertainment will not be as good as it is at the Costa Caribe so it’s all about what you want to get from your holiday.
The maids love to be given chewing gum and dollars and they do tend to clean your room better if you give them this. Also wise to bring colouring pens, pads, footballs, sweets for the children in the local communities if you venture on the local excursions such as the Monster Truck trip or to see the Dolphins.
I would not go back to this hotel again but for 2 weeks all inclusive I really did enjoy my holiday. I met some really lovely people on the trip and the staff are really very helpful and friendly. It is ideal for children with all the pools but the kids club costs $10 per hour and the show doesn’t start until 9pm (for kids) and 10pm for adults through to 11pm. Children under 18 can’t go in to the sports bar.
Take lots of sun cream and be aware that on the way there you can only pack 18kg of luggage per person at Gatwick – we got charged £130 for three cases being over weight and we didn’t even pack that much. On the way back we didn’t get charged at all. We didn’t have any jabs to travel here and we only got a few mosquito bites – buy the spray from Boots with ‘Deet’ in. Also take plenty of water for the plane both sides.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Michele|
We just returned from a week’s stay at this lovely resort and contrary to some of the negative reviews, I could find absolutely nothing to complain about. The resort itself was very pretty and everything was kept scrupulously clean. The staff bent over backward to be helpful and always with a smile. I heard some people complaining about trivial things like a running toilet or trouble closing the door to their room. I think people forget that they are in a different country and standards are completely different to what we are accustomed to. Many people do not even have the luxury of an indoor toilet there, so be patient and put things into perspective. The pace of life is much slower in the islands, and when we are told something will be 10 minutes, they don’t mean this literally. 10 Dominican minutes could be an hour or two – and really, what’s the emergency anyway? Go get a drink, sit back and relax. Our room had everything we needed, including a fridge they kept stocked with 2 beers, 2 soft drinks and 2 bottles of water daily. We had a wonderful view of the beach from our balcony and lacked for nothing.
The pools were prettily landscaped with rocks, palm trees and waterfalls. There were 3 or 4 whirlpool/hot tubs to choose from and food was available 24 hours a day. The beach was beautiful – you could walk for miles each way. The swimming area at the hotel’s section of the beach was small, but you could swim anywhere beyond that if you chose. I would suggest beach shoes – the reef that protects the beach is battered constantly by the waves and large chunks of coral wash into the shallows and litter the shore.
There was plenty to eat and we had no problems at all with upset stomachs or sickness. I have been in the Caribbean several times, including the D.R., and this is the first time I did not experience any sort of "traveller’s bug" or discomfort.
I would heartily recommend this hotel, unless you are one of those vacationers who really needs things to be exactly the way they are for you at home. If that’s the case, perhaps visiting another country is not for you – stay home where you’re more comfortable!
If you chose to visit in February or March, a trip to Samana Bay to see the Humpback whales is a definite must!
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Mike ~ Canada|
My wife and I stayed at the CCC from March 5-19 2007. After reading the reviews on several sites prior to going I was unsure what we would find. I have to say we were pleasantly surprised. It was obvious during our stay that the new management were working at getting things back on track and for the money we spent (~$3000 cdn total taxes and insurance) we felt we got a good deal.
Pros and cons: Every member of the staff was courteous and friendly and genuinely wanted to help make our stay enjoyable. Bartenders when out of a particular brand of liquor would either get a bottle or direct us to a bar that had it. Staff greeted us at the buffet and a la carte restaurants with a smile and several times surveys were handed out to get our feedback. The food as mentioned in other reviews was good, not fantastic but there was always lots of choice and I never saw any thing that resembled reuse of food etc. The room was dated but clean and large with a good sized balcony and the maid Margarita Diaz ensured we had water, pop and sodas in the fridge each day as well as clean towels etc. Also several towel creations and flowers appeared throughout our stay. We tipped moderately and my wife had brought some small toiletries/pantyhose etc. When we asked one bartender Clarissa Reyes (I think she may have been the only female bar staff) about directions into San Pedro (we usually try one trip as the locals do it) she tried to explain and when we seemed unsure she suggested we go with her after her shift and we did and had a great experience. Several bus’s and a bit of a walk and then once we had shopped she had and older friend (Jose in his 50’s) take us on his motoscooter to the bus for the return trip and the locals on the bus made sure we got off at the right resort. The next morning before her shift Clarissa looked for us to ask if we had any difficulty.
The beach is nice and large with lots of loungers (we never once put a towel out and always got a lounger). And the pool by the Santa Fe restaurant became our most used spot as it was quite and uncrowded. The casino was OK but we are not big on gambling but several folks we met had some luck.
We felt safe and secure the whole time and the only incident I heard of was a young man who lost his ID and money ( I believe from his room but I do not have details). As for hassles on the beach from vendors or from the timeshare folks a “No Gratias” was the most it took. As for the weekends with the locals we took the first Saturday for a trip to Saona Island (which we highly recommend) but Sunday was not bad. Yes lots of people so we stayed by the pool and I think the choice of food may have dropped but there was still enough for us to find something and yes there were lots of kids but most locals seemed Ok. The bars did get crowded and guess what the locals had an easier time getting served since they spoke the lingo and could communicate better but I never had a difficulty finding service from one of the bars.
My wife experienced trouble with the food or water upsetting her but this happens frequently when we travel and it has a snowball effect she get problems and then does not eat which causes other problems. We did manage to find some Kraft cheese in the Jumbo Food mart in San Pedro and that helped her through.
Will we go back to this resort? Most likely not. But that is because the world is a big place and there are lot of places we want to see. But if I was going back to the DR and to this area I would not hesitate to take a chance on this resort again. But we met folks from England who invited us to try England and bragged up the Maldives? And there is lots of Canada to see so we invited them to try that so who knows where next we will try.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Monica ~ New Brunswick|
Where should I begin. I booked a vacation for Feb 2007 at Coral Costa Caribe in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic with a travel agent. That night I looked at the reviews on the internet & I was terrified to go at this place. Called my agent the next day she said this is a 4* & sometimes the reviews are people that are angry – but in the meantime she really tried to cancel this vacation & booked me somewhere else. The agent (rep) in the Domincian couldn’t be reach for days ….. but in the end the trip couldn’t be cancel too close of the depature date — well let me tell you that I was very disappointed with this news if we cancel we would lose the 100 % percent of our money therefore we decided to go. Maybe I was over reacting…..well guest what ….I wasn’t read on. Drive from Airport to resort 1 hour & 1/2. finally arrived at the resort, we had to register at the Sports Bar which stinks by the way so we’re thinking is this what we have to look forward too. Looked old & needed paint, repair, or something. Then got to our room, well TV not working, room not in good shape, the patio was facing the maintenance building & was not a nice view to look at (real dump) then I looked down at the roof at our patio saw a old pair of men’s underwear gross… We were tired of the trips & couldn’t believe this, me & my husband look at each other Oh my God!
So tired as we were…off we went to lobby to change our room . My husband asked for a pool view gave $$ know what I mean, and we got a room. As we were going along the lobby we meet people from our plane that were changing rooms too.
When we got to our new room, it was nice, renovated nice view (at least this time), but don’t be HAPPY for us for too long … the toilet was leaking quite heavy had to put a pail. We went out for a bit & the pail was full I was starting to panic I taught the room was going to flood— Called the front desk & this was fixed.
Beach: Nice Beach, that all this resort has going for them.
The Food: There is not very much choice at the buffet very lame. Breakfast is a joke, the eggs the chef can’t cook it & in the buffet everything is gross looking to me mash bananas ??, fried chicken for the night before ??? I feel like throwing up just the taught of this place.
Lunch & Supper: The same not much, no decoration for buffet – the food is just thrown there not clean area staff not to nice either. There were people from our plane that saw big rat in the Buffet area. (GROSS….) the restaurant are not much either….
I got sick a couple of days in my vacation , my husband was very sick for 4 days. We have been traveling 12 years we know what a 4 * is. This is in not way close to it. 90 % percent of this resort was sick. There’s was people that had to go on IV cost them $ 320.00 and this particular person was sick for 6 days nice trip. – I would not recommend this place to anyone .
Once upon arrival at the Airport to go home you Rep. for Sunquest was asking who was sick at the resort it was a big joke – people were saying how about you ask who wasn’t sick. My husband is still sick he hasn”t eaten much since his back. We usally gain 5 pounds on our vacation this time we lose weight.
Prostitues… I never seen this in my life on vacation & especially at a 4* star resort ( what a joke). Old men with young local women, they told us they buy this women for 1 week get them braclets at the resort they sleep there they eat at the buffet …. now I’m really gross out.. I’ve seen them- it’s very obvious. And let me tell you there is not only one there are many.
Right next to the resort ( same side as Casino) there is a little store with Highspeed Internet – the internet at the resort doesn’t work or when it works it very slow. So a lot of people told us they went at the store at night & prostitue come out of the wood & go right at them – this is right next door to our resort.
When we left this resort & on to the bus people were clapping their hands, someone on the bus said this is no way a 4 *. He said was at a 3.5 * in Cancun & didn’t compare at all to this place & I know exactly what he means. I have sent a complaint letter to my travel agent & they have had numerous complaints over this resort . In fact they have stop selling this resort.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Andrea ~ Nova Scotia|
After reading everyone’s review on this resort, I was a little scared about going….I was pleasantly surprised when the four of us arrived at the resort.
Our trip was the last Sunquest Charter from Canjet comming out of Halifax, NS to Costa Caribe for this year, as they couldn’t sell all the seats, maybe people took the bad reviews too seriously…
Arrived at La Romana Airport. Very pretty spot, well manicured, clean, fast service through customs etc. Nice surprise, not the hundreds of porters wanting to carry you bag 20 feet to the waiting bus.
Ride to resort is approx 40-50 minutes depending on traffic, as most of the highway is new and fast. Most people are surprised to see garbage along roadside, as trash pick up is not always available.
Resort check in is 3pm, couple we were with got room right away so we just got porter to take our luggage up to their room for us. When we went back to see if our room was ready yet, my husband and Bro-in-law was smiling and dancing and we got a really nice room with a beautiful beach and ocean view. There were several other resort guests at front desk with nasty looks on their faces, being loud, cursing and typically acting like fools, who were getting no help (you figure that one out yourself).
I found the resort clean, comfortable, and attractive. We did loose water one night til about 9pm we were in room S401… The pool was treated each night, and cleaned in the mornings. Never an issue with not finding loungers to sit on.
The beach was raked each morning. Water shoes are a necessity on the beach. They’ve widened the beach with sand from another part of the island and it is very sharp with shells and bits of coral. In the water avoid the dark grass, there are sea urchins with very long spines and they will ruin your trip if you step on one or touch one. i suggest you bring your own snorkel gear, there are fish by the hundreds and if you bring some bread from the buffet, they will come to you to be fed. If you look around the coral where the metal pole is sticking up, you will see some beautiful blue and yellow fish and just below the water surface, small sword fish.
Buffet was very clean, service with water/drinks/coffee was fast, and always was a seat I personally was bored with it by the 3rd day. Found not a lot of choices and same things were offered. I really don’t care for the taste of the milk or cheese (just my opinion – a man I met said, "it tasted like a cow farted in his glass" ) I love the bread, the BBQ chicken, and the Italian restaurant was great for the beef tenderloin, we went twice. Snack bar Mangoes was good for fries, burgers and always had coffee available.
Yes, there are local people on the weekends, and the service is a little slower at bars, seating is a little more at premium in buffet, but, we took a day trip on Saturday, and Sunday kinda just hung out on balcony reading and drinking Presidente (we saved our daily 2 beer from fridge in suitcase and had it all on Sunday ) So, didn’t affect us, did however notice the resort was considerably louder on Weekend. Dominicans, tend to talk very loud with each other and enjoy loud music (for most peoples standards, so if you are looking for peace and quiet, then this is not the place for you!!)
Went on two trips,
Full day at Santa Domingo $50.00 US per Person- Great trip, must take it, includes the caves, historical sites, restaurant, shopping – Interesting and a great way to see the old city. Does not include the new city.
Day trip to Sanoa Island — Totally worth $70.00 US per Person — Pick you up at 8:15 drive to San Pedro de Marcois, commentary on Baseball history, stop to shop 15 mins, stop for swimming in middle of ocean (and rum), speed boat to island, couple hours on beach, lunch (rum), then Catamarin back(more rum) and another stop for shopping. Totally enjoyed the entire day. Got back to resort at about 8pm. I would recommend the DVD that they sell of your trip, also encludes a documentary of island history and most of the spots on the Santo Domingo tour. 35 US we split with the other couple with us. We also bought the CD and Bottle of rum with your picture which is just a photo taped to a a bottle of very cheap rum –$10. US but, who cares. It’s a nice memento…
Can’t comment on any of the shows, because we didn’t go to any.
Found all staff very friendly and helpful.
All-in-all, I was impressed with the resort, enjoyed it, and had a great time.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Lauren and Nick|
We flew into Santo Domingo airport and arranged with S.T. Silva Tranfers to be picked up and driven to the resort. Check in was very fast and easy. We arrived Wednesday around 4 pm and the resort was not crowded at all. We were greeted with welcome drinks (which were very tasty). We opted to rent the safe for the week and I believe it amounted to $3 per day.
We were escorted to our room to find the A/C working VERY well and cute heart-shaped towel art on the bed. The only complaint about the room was that we requested NO Smoking and were given a Smoking room. It did not smell at all like smoke, the only difference was an ashtray. The lighting in the room was dim but we were there for the beach and the sunshine so it didn’t matter. The light over the sink in the bathroom is very bright. The power never went out while we were there. We did not however, have hot water between the hours of 3pm and 8 pm which was probably due to everyone in the resort showering and getting ready for dinner.
Food/Drinks: We highly recommend Sante Fe (Mexican) and Rigoletta (Italian). The food at both restaurants was fantastic and we went back to each restaurant a second time. El Fogon (Domincan inspired) was not anything that impressed us aside from the atmosphere. Ambar, the buffet, was the usual food that is made for the masses. Breakfast was good here and the fruit was very sweet and juicy. We were open to trying everything and enjoyed some things that looked questionable. Mango’s the snack bar was very convenient. They were open basically all of the time and had pizza, burgers, hot dogs, French fries and some other items. There were a lot of bars; some of them made drinks stronger than others but we learned which bartenders were better at the days progressed. The drinks are great, they have some specialty island drinks and they can make all of the regulars as well.
Beach: not crowded at all until Friday-Sunday (the locals come in to the hotel for the weekend) the sand was a little rocky but the water was beautiful. The resort built a jetty-type structure out in the water to prevent the rough waves from hitting the swimming area. That made a big difference! The maintenance worked very hard to keep the beach clean like raking any seaweed that washed up. The vendors on the beach were pretty aggressive. If you are sleeping on your lounge chair they will speak very loudly over you until you wake up and say “No Gracias”. We made a game out of seeing who could say “No Gracias” more while on the beach.
The hotel staff is very helpful and willing to accommodate. We called down to guest services and requested more pillows on our first day. Within half an hour we had them delivered to our room. The maid was fantastic and we tipped her about $5 every day. She made awesome towel art and restocked our mini fridge every day. With the mini fridge you are allowed 2 beers, and 2 sodas as well as the water that is in there. The Chocolate Friends (the interactive entertainment team for the resort) only approached us once during our stay to do aerobics. The people that approached us every single day were the representatives from the Vacation Club. They said they would only take ten minutes of our time and it ended up being 90 minutes away from the sun and beach. Needless to say, this was not a happy part of our day.
Snorkeling: We went snorkeling through the Pro Divers group that worked within the hotel. We paid $18 each for a 4 km boat ride and 90 minutes of snorkeling. It was a great time and our guide picked up a blow fish so I could take a picture of him all puffed up with my underwater camera. It was a lot of fun and we recommend it.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Chrissy|
Last year I had to get a lawyer to come in to the Halifax airport to have an affidavit done up in order to board the plane, it cost me $150.00. Apparently you need a registered number on the back of your birth certificate. This year we were not planning a trip, but at the last minute we changed our minds. I had my lawyer do one up for $20.00…and guess what…didn’t even need it. We flew with Canjet, staff wasn’t as pleasant on the way there, but very nice on the way back. Our flight was at 7AM, this was the first morning flight we took. (Husband loved it and I would prefer my evening flights)
Arriving at the resort:
It was raining when we arrived at the resort around 2PM, most rooms were not ready, we were lucky because ours was ready. When we got to the room, we were very shocked at the condition of the room, it wasn’t what we had expected for a 4star…rust on the fridge and airconditioner, it was a very thrifty room. We could tell that mosts of the people that had arrived with us were also very disappointed. The staff at the front desk were not pleasant, it took a long time for guests to check in. Other than the rooms the resort is quite beautiful.
The buffet restaurant was clean, after a few days I noticed the same food was offer for each meal…rice, baked beans, potatoes, but I always found something good to eat. We didn’t have a problem with getting a cup of coffee or anything else from the staff. There is no reservations needed for the other restaurants, which was quite nice. We ate at the Italian Restaurant-food was good-delightful interior-very cold (bring a sweater). The Mexican Restaurant-first time the food was good, second night we ordered something different and it wasn’t so good-interior doesn’t look Mexican. We ate well all week.
Pools/Beach: There are 3 pools, very refreshing after spending some time in the sun. The pool bar was not available from inside the pool. A little waterfall is in one of the pools, nice for photos. The beach was the highlight for me, it’s big and beautiful. They did a nice job expanding, but could use some shade huts. You have to come up off the beach to get a drink or something to eat.
The was plenty of beach vendors as the other resorts are not to close. My husband and I walked both ways on the beach, it was pretty to watch the sun rise. The water was not to rough as they have a barrier up. There was lots of fish swimming around us, my husband saw some out snorkeling also. It was great to spend the week on the beach!
There was quite a line up to check our luggage, didn’t take too long. The restaurants in the airport were very expensive, but good food! Someone bought some Pringles for $5.00, ouch.
In General: It was very relaxing. I had heard about the locals coming in on the weekends. This did not cause a problem for us. The families were enjoying themselves and were not bothing anyone. We had no problems getting a drink or food. There is a small market about a 2 minute walk from the resort, you can find anything you may need, we went to the internet cafe a couple of time, it was clean and only cost us $2.00 for half an hour.
The rooms were kept very clean, the maids were friendly. I didn’t hear of any theft. The safe cost us $26.00 for the week, worry free. I would recommend this resort to others, just keep the thrifty rooms in mind.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Hugh & Debbie|
We have just come back from a week at the Costa Caribe Coral – 4 adults. We were really worried about staying at this resort after reading all the reviews and when we arrived after a 3 hour transfer we were given rooms in the main hotel on the top floor. It was horrible. I think these rooms are only given out when the hotel is full. There are no balconies and our room had been stripped of everything, no pictures on the walls, torn curtains, no shampoo, shower gel, bath mat, water to clean teeth, no hot water, only one dim light in the bathroom and one centre light in the main room that had to be turned off from the door – no bedside lights. No soft drinks had been left for us.
However the next day we were changed to new rooms these were in S Block and we found these to be okay. Plenty of hot water, cleaned everyday, they had a few minor problems over the week but the staff tried to solve them asap.
The staff were friendly and helpful, the food was what we expected with reasonable choice. Went to the Mexican and that was okay too but we all ended up on different days of the week with sickness and diarrhoea
The evenings entertainment is provided on an outside stage so you can’t get away from the noise but it does end at 11pm. It was difficult to find shade, none at all on the beach.
Overall it ended up not being as bad as we expected but we have been to the Canoa Coral at Bayhibe twice and loved it there. We would never go back to this resort.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Constant and Kay ~ Arnhem, The Netherlands|
We were at the Costa Caribe Coral from Februari 7 up to the 21st.
A group of 6, 4 adults and 2 children 12 and 15.
Airport / Customs : Coming and going from Punta Cana
The customs were no problem and both ways a quick passage.
The Hotel : The first impression was good, nice grounds and wel kept. Altough it looks dated and a bit more maintanace could do a lot.
At the weekend a lot of Dominicans who can be rude and pushy.
The Beach : The beach is wide and is cleaned twice a day. Staff is walking round for collect glasses and picking up sigarette buds, so use some kind of an ashtray. But no palmtrees or umbrella’s for some shade. A lot of beachvendors, bargain for good price.
The beach is a great place tob e.
The pools: On the main complex 2 pools, 1 with a waterfall. 1 whirlpool. At the kidsclub 1 kiddypool. Across the road by the Mexican restaurant 1 pool
All the pools are clean and threathet with chemicals every night.
The Staff : We found that 60 – 70% of the staff is walking round in a mood.
Not friendly and no hola or a smile.
The Rooms : We were given rooms S202 and S226. The rooms and bathrooms are dated and need a lot of maintanance From day one big water problems in all the rooms that start with S. So you had to be lucky if you could have a wash in the morning, a shower at night after a day on the beach, or to flush your toilet !!! We went everyday sometimes twice to guestservice for get something done, nothing happend, no water. If there was water you did not have enough towels to get everybody dry. SO STAY AWAY FROM ROOMS STARTING WITH S
Together with some other tourists with an S room we called it cellblock S.
The restaurants :
Amber buffet, The food is ok nothing special but good nothing more nothing less. Not a very big choice. The bigger tables for more ther 4 people are never complete, with plate’s, forks, knife’s, etc, etc. If you see butter in the morning get it before they run out. If you see the waiter with coffee kidnap him or you’ll have no coffee.
Nice place, good food, a saladbar, but the airco is freezing cold.
The Mexican, (Our favorite)
Good meals, taco and saladbar. Especially the steak and ribs are very nice.
Special traditional Dominican food, have a try.
Hotdogs, Chips, Pizza’s, Fish, Chicken, and a saladbar.
Very nice and good.
Animationteam : What a disaster, they group together and do not walk round for invite you in a game or activity and a hola is far away, totaly nothing. They should amuse us, but they do nothing
The shows are cheap, they like to take the piss with the tourists, some people might like it.
Guestservice, They listen to your problems after that nothing happens. We have had waterproblems for 10 days the man at the guest service did not do anything untill we shouted i stood there in the lobby with my body full of soap and my hair full of shampoo because the water stopped again after no shower for 3 day’s. Finally on day 11 we were given a different rooms #1512 and 1514.
Maybe you dont have the same experience as us but dont take no for an answer if you have a probleem.
Overall The total hotel needs a makeover including a lot of staff needs to be replaced. We will never be back here, it was our worst All Inclusive holiday ever !!!
If you have any questions mail us on,
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Wendy and Lloyd ~ PEI|
We just returned from our trip here and I must say we were pleasantly surprised. We were a bit nervous after having read the reviews but we were more than happy once we got there. The resort is clean and the staff are friendly. The only bad thing we can say about this resort is that the hot water wasn’t plentiful. Beach was great; bring flip flops as the beach is shelly and hard on the feet. The water is great; further out you go you encounter seaweed. Food was okay; we recommend eating at the Mexican; it was really good. Rooms were clean and all our doors locked. The remote for the TV didn’t work but who goes there to watch TV! The locals come in on the weekends but they didn’t bother us any. They need some down time as well. There was no difference in service or wait times. We always had a supply of water, beer and pop in our fridge. You can rent a room safe for $24 American which I highly recommend. If you want to call home you can use *20 from your room. This takes you to the Canadian operator and there is no charge to use this. You can also go to the plaza/phone centre which is about 2 minutes to the right as you leave the lobby. There is duty free at the airport but all they sell is perfume and liquor. Make sure you bring lots of sunscreen as it is expensive to buy down there. I would recommend this resort to my friends. We were a group of 8 and we had a blast! You make your own vacation! And you have to go with the mentality that you aren’t in Canada anymore. Overall, we had a great time and would return again.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Linda & Pierre ~ Scarborough, Canada|
The worst vacation ever!!!
My husband and I flew with Skyservice. We were very happy with the service. The cabin crew was friendly, courteous and very helpful. As we all know chartered flights are cramped, but the flight in not that long.
Airport/Customs: The airport is small and we went through customs very quick. The bus ride to the resort is one hour.
Resort: Well…I don’t know where to begin. We were very disappointed. The resort needs a makeover “Big Time”. The lobby is not very bright, the furniture is old. We were told to go to the disco to check in. None of the rooms were ready…when they were it was very disappointing. The rooms are so dated…just really awful. The maid service was excellent since my husband tip and gifts.
Buffet: We manage to find something edible the first night. I did not have any breakfast, because it was the same thing every day. My husband and I travel three to four times a year. We always manage to have a good time and enjoy the food…but this is first time the buffet sucked. There are three a la carte restaurants so we ate at those the rest of the week. We also ate lunch everyday at the grill. Needless to say we are now both sick with our tummy.
Bars: The service was good…but then again we tipped. The drinks are watered down and not top shelf. Luckily we picked up some duty free for our room.
Pools: This area was taken over by lots and lots of children. We did not use the Jacuzzi because the kids were always using it. The kids were noisy, jumping into the pools.
Beach: The nicest part of this vacation was the weather. The whole week was just fantastic…just beautiful blue skies. There was no shade on the beach…they had removed all the huts. The only shady areas were from the two trees around the pool. Everyone was constantly dragging their chairs around to find some shade. The beach was beautiful and calm.
Diving/Snorkeling: Sea Pro Divers was excellent. Henri was always helpful, patient and friendly.
Animation/Activities: This was a joke…ridiculous!!!
Overall: My first instinct was not to do a review on this resort, but we do find that most reviewers are honest…so it helps when choosing a resort. We would definitely not go back to this resort. We rate this resort a 2.5 star. Rating this property appropriately was very difficult. I always write reviews. I totally understand that these destinations try their utmost to make us happy and we should try to adjust to their way of living. I can be reached for any additional information. firstname.lastname@example.org
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|Costa Caribe Coral||Mr. & Mrs. B ~ Waterloo Ontario Canada|
We have just returned from the worst vacation in history.
The worst part is we were at the same resort 3 times previous and it was good. however Sunquest did not notify travellers that in the last 6 months Hilton no longer ran this resort. At the time we were down it was in the Banks hands and needless to say, things have changed.
My husband has been sick since the second week of our vacation. More than I bet half the resort were ill. The safe food practices really did not exist.
Flys were constantly on the food which was cold most of the time. We had our room cleaned only partially along with snorkling equip. stolen. When reported to desk and Sunquest Rep. it was like were made it up. We are couple in our early 50"s. Our so called golf inclusive was charged to us because they said contracts weren’t signed. After a lot of fights however in 4 day this was cleared up. We however lost 4 days of golf.
The daily activites, which in the past included a lot of games was then only arobics in the pool and beach and beach volley ball. Before they had darts etc.
The beach has been improved, but in the process, they removed all the shade huts.With l000 people or so there was a really fight to get one of the 3 to 4 shade spots at the resort.
All in all we will never return to this resort and can almost say not to many of the tourist there the weeks we were will either. It is to bad as it was a good resort once.
As for 4 star no way. 2 at the most.
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|Costa Caribe Coral||John and Wendy ~ Canada|
We just returned on Feb 2nd from 2 weeks at the Coral Costa Caribe. This was our 5th trip to this resort in the past 4 years.
The resort remains the same as when it was a Hilton. Anyone traveling there should not expect the same as a 4.5 star resort in North America. This is a different country and things move a little bit slower there. The changes to the beach are amazing! As usual – you never have any problems finding a lounger to relax in the sun. The evening entertainment has declined from what it was previously and the ‘disco’ is in definite need of a facelift.
Our room was clean, linens were changed daily and we had no issues other than an extremely flat pillow. We had an issue with our air conditioner and maintenance staff were there within 15 minutes to correct the problem.
The only issue we had was with Sunquest (our tour company) and its arrangements with Guavaberry Golf Course. The rates that Sunquest quoted were not accurate nor did they mention the mandatory caddie fee. The course was great as it always has been.
In summary, we had a great 2 weeks in the sun and we are only disappointed by our tour company.
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