My best friend, and I both around 30, got back a month ago from our trip and we are still talking about all the fun things that happened on our trip, the fun people we met and how much we wish we were still there, a week goes by far too fast- make every moment count!!! This was my friend’s second AI trip, she had been to Cuba before, and I have been to Cuba, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Jamaica and now the DR.
We both had no issues with this resort. The staff were really friendly and got to know our drinks by mid-week, the people were great and the animation team- both the Resorts and the French speaking one- related to Air Transat Europe- were fantastic- special mention to the French one as they had activities every night that were very creative and exciting. Even if you don’t speak French you should definitely check out their nightly entertainment, every time it was a blast! Luckily, my gf and I both speak French well enough that we made quite a few friends from France. See video of J doing the Limbo!
The resort is one of the last resorts from the airport, it only took about 30-40 minutes to drop off the other 16 or so passengers at their resorts, was an interesting ride and our driver played DJ for us, was a bit cold so don’t get sun-ready too quickly like I did. Checking in took a little while, there seemed to be quite a few guests who needed help besides us checking in so it took a little longer- 20 minutes at most. Spent the 20$ for the safe as recommended, didn’t have a single problem with that- see Rooms. We were given a room in building #8 as opposed to the club section for Sunwing, thank God!
Rooms: We were in room 816, the furthest building on the north side of the beach, was very convenient and quiet all the time. The flowers on the sink were a nice touch, toiletries went unused as we girls are picky, but they looked pretty decent and washcloths were provided- again unused… The safe lock seems complex when they hand it to you at the front desk, but was very simple to get it in and worked well all week- try to connect the key to something like your purse or wallet so you never forget to lock it or forget the key in the lock, something we did absentmindedly more than a few times, until we started doing this- too many drinks on the beach? Our room was always kept very clean, no matter how much we tried to make it otherwise with all the sand everywhere, and so cutely on the first night, in the hopes of making my going to bed routine easier I put my nightie on the bed-when we returned the turn-down maid had arranged it in the prettiest way! We didn’t remember to tip every day, but it definitely didn’t seem to matter, our room was always very caringly cleaned regardless of what we left, great staff and great rooms, the shower/toilet being in a separate room from the sink was really great too, not all resorts do this, was great with 2 girls getting ready! Balcony was nice, view into the building beside but most people drew their curtains unless on their balconies.
Room keys didn’t work all the time, but after a while I found if you repeatedly tried it you could get it to work eventually, the machinery seems to be a little faulty.
Restaurants and Bars: The buffets were great, not perfect but pretty standard. Service at times was difficult, and once we got up to get seconds and came back to a cleared table- a bit frustrating but we do take a long time and had nothing to leave there to show we weren’t done. Salads were really great, and overall there was good choice at all meals and we never went hungry. The beach buffet has great choices, they change it most days we never made it to the main buffet for lunch so I can’t say much for that but I am sure it was as good as brekkie and dinner. We were lucky enough to try 3 of the restaurants besides the buffet. We met a single traveller who seemed to have an in with the management and we got to try the Italian restaurant on our last night, everything was really great there, the pizza, the prosciutto and the pasta. The Dominican restaurant was really great except for the beef that I ordered, it was a little overcooked to say the least, the service was great nonetheless. The steakhouse was pretty good too, loved the soup, had the fajitas for fun- wow there was enough for 4 people in my 1p serving! The after hours restaurant was great after a night of fun, was a great place to relax unwind and grab a snack, most of it very mediocre but at that time of night anything warm is nice. The alternative to this is the sports bar, the ham and cheese sandwiches get a little repetitive by the end of the week though, and 🙁 they run out of them at times!
The bars- all were ok, some didn’t have fruit to put in your drinks- lemons and limes- some had pineapple by special request and most of the drinks were nothing special, but at the price you pay it is to be expected, sticking to beer or vodka&sprite con limon will save you from an upset stomach- Pina Coladas and Rum and Cokes are a little hard on your stomach, don’t even try to blame it on the food! My gf and I drink a lot, an Immodium before dinner helped us immensely when we could remember, a good tip perhaps even if you don’t drink much.
Wow, everything was so gorgeous, walking back from the Disco at night was a surreal experience, lots of jungle noises and gorgeous greenery everywhere. The walk is long- take the train if you can. The pools were a bit cool but sooo refreshing and we quickly staked out a spot close to the beach bar and beach bar bathrooms- best spot for sun/drinks and washroom breaks. The beach was gorgeous, very soft sand most spots and lots of chairs everywhere, never had a problem finding chairs and when it did rain twice I think, it was only 15minutes or so- if it starts to rain find cover asap! The rain comes quickly when it starts a little get outta dodge!
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: We did the Caribbean Festival half day trip, swimming with sharks/manta rays, snorkeling and catamaran trip. Was definitely worth the money if you are easy to please, but the snorkelling was mediocre at best, and the day did seem to drag on a little, my gf and I enjoyed ourselves but could see that others might not be as impressed.
We went to Imagine discotheque, was so cool, it is in a cave and jam-packed with people! Definitely worth checking out if you like dancing, mostly played Spanish music- understandably!
If you want to stay somewhere really nice pay a bit more! IMO this place is great and really is amazing but yes there are better resorts out there, it is not a 5 star, but a great 4star for the DR. For a great bargain and fun trip this is the place! Great for couples (young and old alike), families(though the water can be a touch rough), singles and girlfriend- guys week getaways!