|Oasis Hamaca||Aquilla Yoder Jr ~ Lancaster, PA|
Arrival: March 7-14 We arrived at 10:30 pm on Sat night. The cab ride from the airport was an adventure as traffic laws seem to be only a suggestion to drivers.
We used a time share and our room was waiting for us. Clean, nice modern sink in the back part of the resort
Restaurants and Bars:
We absolutely loved the bars/restaurants. Great food with fun staff. We always made an effort to try every bartenders’ special drink
Very clean and beautiful! We were in paradise!
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We went in town shopping one day with another couple we met there. That was quite an adventure as men on motorbikes were trying to pick my wife up as she and I walked along the street
We were not expecting much according to some of the reviews we read. We were absolutely surprised by how great our experience was. We had booked this as a celebration of our 20 years of marriage and went with the attitude that if nothing else, it would at least be warm there. This was the most perfect week of our lives and we were pleased with every part of the resort except for the people who kept trying to sell us another time share. Let us alone we were on our anniversary! I’ve never been to any other part of the DR, and we decided that we may try another part just to see if it would be any different. But overall we were thrilled with the value and beauty of this resort – topless beaches and all!!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Emily ~ Ottawa, Canada|
March 2009 Arrival: January 2009
My husband and I stayed at the Oasis Hamaca for one week in January 2009. I meant to write a report as soon as I got home but other things came along. Still I want to write so here it is: Based on the bad reports I saw on the web page before going (my husband booked the trip on a last minute thing) I was not expecting anything nice. In fact I expected things so bad I took toilet paper, bottled water, mosquito repellent, mice traps, tapes for leaking plumbing, soaps, towels and canned food!. Let me tell you right now, I would be happy to go again and probably will. So this review is for those who want to hear some good things about Oasis Hamaca (in addition to things that were, well not so good). Arrival
My husband and I arrived on different aircraft from different Canada cities. I travelled to the resort by bus from Punta Cana while my husband landed in the Santo Domingo airport only 20 minutes away from the resort. I was tired after the 5 hour trip by bus and arrived at 4p.m. My husband arrived well past 11 p.m.. My trip by bus was great! Got to see the country side and we stopped at little road-side shops for food, drinks and washroom breaks. Of the people on the bus with me, my stop was last. Therefore I also got to see all the other resorts where passengers were getting off at. I was impressed with most of them and thought "Oh golly my place is going to be awful in comparison!" I struck conversations with some of the people on the bus and we agreed we would share our experiences on our way back. The drivers were very nice. On arrival to the Oasis Hamaca I got a room right away. I found the front desk busy but it was fine, the staff friendly. The place was clean and there were wonderful fresh flowers in the main entrance. The staff had given me "two keys" and said they would notify my husband that I have his key. They would also phone me to let me know he had arrived. Imagine my surprise when my husband arrived and opened the door with a "third key" and I was never notified that he had arrived! Which means if there ever was another kind of mix-up a stranger could get a key to my room without checking with me that it was ok? Not good. Rooms
I was disappointed that our room was in the older section of the resort, over looking the garden with the pool on the opposite side. I could tell there were better rooms in the newer part by the beach. But, having travelled to so many poor countries in the past this was not a hotel that ranked as the worst I’ve seen. We decided not to pay the extra money for an up-grade. Our window was not closing well so the place was full of mosquitoes. We were prepared for them so the next night was all well. The staff managed to fix the window the second day of our stay. Our disappointment with the room included three things: no key to the safety box–there is a chronic shortage of keys. We waited 3 days to get one. Although I signed an agreement form about how many free drinks I could have from the in-room fridge there was no in-room fridge on my arrival. Finally got one but I had to wait in the room for it and it took 3 hours. The TV was broken so I waited for it to be replaced as well. I waited the same 3 hours for both TV and fridge. I missed supper because of the waiting. The cleaning staff were very nice and each day the beds were made up and fresh flowers placed on my pillow. Nice touch! Restaurants and Bars
"The food was tremendous and bountiful. The vegetables and fruits were fantastic, not to mention the freshly baked breads and desserts. The Bars were GREAT! The Bartenders were all attentive and innovative with drinks. " I agree 100% with those statements written by someone else on a previous report. Only to add that the food in the Italian restaurant was sumptuous! The Dominican food was very good too. We did not like the Mexican restaurant’s food but loved the ambiance! We did not need to go any outside restaurants nor did we go to the Fish restaurant on the beach. This was no so much to save money, as that restaurant is not part of the all inclusive, as to the fact that I didn’t want to eat fish. We enjoyed the piano player in the evenings in the bar/lobby off the two restaurants, the Dominican and the Italian. Wonderful views towards the beach! Beach/Pools/Grounds
The Beach, Pools and the Grounds were extremely clean and beautiful. We enjoyed our walks in the evening and it was a pleasure to stroll in the gardens to the restaurants for lunch and dinner. The Olympic size pool on the beach was hardly ever used so we were so happy to frolic and swim without any interruption from kids. The best advice I took from previous reviewers was to take my own towels. I’m glad I did. There was a towel shortage at the beach and people were hanging on to theirs with special care but was it a chronic problem and all the time? No. The weekends were a problem possibly because some patrons were there only for the weekend. There was construction next door and this was very close to the pool but that did not bother us at all. The pool in the garden was beautiful and we enjoyed reading books by the side and swimming up to the bar for drinks. The place is clean! Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel
We took two tours. One to the capital–city tour which I highly recommend for anyone who has a sense of history and loves to explore other cultures. The facts about Columbus are not correct but we have found that each country likes to embellish their facts to make tourists think they are in very important spots. For example we visited the sight of Columbus’s burial. Well, anyone who cares to read history knows that nobody knows where Columbus was buried. Spain claims to have him, Italy claims to have him, etc. He for sure is not buried in the towering mausoleum in the Dominican! However, it is a place to which many countries contributed to mark the historical significance of the European landing. Worth a visit. We however were not given a tour of the inside of this massive building, a pity. We visited a museum in the capital but only saw the first floor of it. I for one was very disappointed this was a great opportunity to see what the Dominican’s saved and what they treasure. On the tour we were taken to a local restaurant and saw a dance performed by local dancers, at one point a women dancing on the top of a wine bottle. Unbelievable! Something to see. The food was standard "tour" fare, spaghetti and meat balls and salad. Nobody got sick. The second tour was into the countryside. We signed up because we have been to Coffee Farms in Costa Rica and wanted to compare. This was a disappointment because the "Coffee Plantation" we were taken to on this Dominican tour consisted of one coffee bush. Our tour of a sugar cane farm consisted of being driven to the sugar cane field, a fellow chopped off a piece of cane and asked us to taste it. The highlights of the tour were: a trip to the most beautiful waterfall where everyone could go for a dip. Also we visited a school and children in grade 5. Very insightful. I wish I had had the presence of mind to have taken some school supplies with me, they would have been appreciated. If you plan on going take some candy. Kids are by the rad side and beg for treats. We were taken to a German restaurant in the bush at the end of our tour. The place was great. The owner considers himself a Picasso painter and his art work in the jungle creates a really great place for a restaurant. The whole place is built using beer bottles, chrisom blue in colour. When the light shines it gives off nice flows of light among the banana tree leaves. The tour participants were taught how to roll a cigar. Interesting procedure even if one is a non-smoker. Washroom was surprisingly clean but don’t eat the food! At least don’t eat the salads. I did not eat the salad and was fine, my husband had stomach problems for the next two days. I recommend the tour, money well spent. I also wish to add that both of our tour guides told us that Oasis Hamaca IS the BEST resort near Santo Domingo. We also walked in the Boca Chica. Lovely place. We had no problems with anyone trying to sell us drugs or anything else. As in all foreign places we don’t stray into off-roads from the main arteries. That is only common sense. Other Comments
Apart from bringing the towels and mosquito repellent I would also recommend that before going people should invest in immunization fit for the travel. This has nothing to do with the resort but the economy and geography of the country. On my way back from the holiday I met up with most of my former bus companions. It turns out that 3 young man left their resort because of food illness. And one couple were ASKED to move because their resort was having water problems. (The one they were up-graded to turned out bad too.) I also met a wedding party from Ottawa Canada that also travelled with me on the plane and they all got sick at their resort in Punta Cana. So, in comparison, I think I had a great trip, loved it and will recommend to our children to go there. Possibly we will return too. Most likely, if we go, we will up-grade the room. I would say those that are complaining a lot about this resort are either very rich or new to travel and expect "4 star" hotels in other countries to mean the same thing as what 4 star hotels mean in the US,Canada or some Western European countries. It may also just come down to luck. Many of our friends love Costa Rica but we will never travel there again because our experience was too disappointing. Two additional comments: the wine choices in the restaurants at Oasis Hamaca was magnificent and cheap! We tipped all servers even though this was not required. They need to go home and live some not just watch us having a good time!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Stephanie ~ Boston, Ma.|
March 2009 Arrival
My sister and I arrived with no problem and the taxi driver was amenable to the fare quoted by the resort Rooms
The room was spacious and very clean. The shower had hot water and pressure. The beds were extremely comfortable and it was a quiet, restful sleep Restaurants and Bars
The food was tremendous and bountiful. The vegetables and fruits were fantastic, not to mention the freshly baked breads and desserts. The Bars were GREAT! The Bartenders were all attentive and innovative with drinks. Beach/Pools/Grounds
The Beach, Pools and Grounds were extremely clean and fun, fun, fun! Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel
No tours but we did take a fantastic banana boat ride and my sister really enjoyed the exercise classes. I enjoyed the bowling on the beach. Other Comments I want to come back within the hour! Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Stu ~ Canada|
March 2009 Arrival
terrible. had to wait 11 hrs for a room. arrived at 4.00 am, no room until 3.00pm. rude hotel staff and tour representative. hotel lobby was dirty. plane load of people had all the same wait. this goes on every week according to staff. sunwing and hotel argue as to whom is responible for the wait to get a room. most people I talked to were unhappy with the situations and their rooms.management did not want to deal with the situation. Rooms
rooms at the old part of hotel are old, outdated, well used. leaking sewage lines from unit above. mosquitos in the rooms. mouldy smelling rooms Restaurants and Bars
ok, food ok, some staff are rude and don;t care, such as bartenders particularily Beach/Pools/Grounds
beaches are kept very clean. best part of the hotel. sewage smell on the grounds when they release the septic flush system in the mornings Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel none Other Comments terrible hotel overall as one would expect a better place for a 4 star. will never go back there again or for that matter another oasis hotel. poor management. Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Bill, Donna, Mike & Sherry|
February 2009 We stayed at this resort for seven days, Jan 22–29 2009. My wife & I have been going south every year for the past 17 years -Sometimes twice a year. I am disabled and would recommend anyone with mobility problems bring a wheelchair. I didn’t so I rented one from the medical folks at 10.00 per day. The resort is huge – the grounds and pools are VERY WELL MAINTAINED & CLEAN. The garden section is showing its age but the hotel section is worth upgrading to. The staff and hotel in general was an 8++ The bars were clean and we were looked after almost to well. Tips were never asked for and one chap wouldn’t take a dollar. "Just doing his job" The food was good but you have to be Hungary to eat pizza on the beach. I have read some not so nice reviews about this place and can report to all THEY AREN’T TRUE!!!!!
If we don’t get back again this year we will look forward to seeing you in 2010
Top of Page February 2009
This hotel was definately the worst we have ever visited. Our room was dirty and smelled really bad, and the bathroom vanity actually crashed to the ground during the night, revealing a nest of hideous black bugs, which scuttled all over the bedroom floor. The new room was equally dirty, and when I asked for it to be cleaned, the head housekeeper was really rude, telling me that it HAD been cleaned. The food was absolutely awful, (often unidentifiable!), resulting in frequent dinners at the non-inclusive privately owned restaurant at the resort. All the common areas had sticky, dirty tables, and the toilets were terrible. I booked this vacation at the last minute, looking for a quick break for my family, but I have learned the hard way that you should always check the reviews before you travel! I hope that someone will benefit from this one DONT GO!!!!!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Elva ~ Ontario, Canada|
February 2009 Beach/Pools/Grounds: January 24 – 31
The beach was nice and the pools were beautiful! The general condition of the grounds varies a lot, some areas look very tacky, complete with fake grass! Other areas are beautifully landscaped and well looked after. Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
I went on the Jeep Safari, fun and educational! Definitely worth the money! We also walked around the area on our own, around the Boca Chica area and into town. A word of caution, if you don’t like to be approached by drug dealers and prostitutes as well as constantly harrassed by vendors, you may want to stay away! Other Comments:
My experience at the Oasis Hamaca was not a good one. Before leaving on my vacation, I had read many mixed reviews about this resort, most of them, I must admit, not very flattering. But I decided to go anyways, as it was only for a week and it was a very last minute trip decision. Arrival was a disaster. The front desk staff were extremely disorganized and it took hours to get checked in. I was travelling with another couple and we had requested ajoining rooms on an upper floor. Not only did we get ground level rooms, we got them at opposite ends of the resort, and this particular resort is extremely large. For the most part, the hotel staff were unfriendly, unhelpful and spoke very little English. The rooms themselves were full of problems. Mine had a nonfunctioning air conditioner and a toilet tank that constantly overflowed. My friends room also had reoccuring problems with their toilet as well as constantly running water in their bathtub. On the second day, I was unable to access my room due to a nonfunctioning key card. Trying to explain to the staff the problem was an enormous issue, and I was locked out for a total of 2 hours before I finally got someone to the room and was able to show them what the problem was. On the positive side, the food was excellent and there was a good variety of it. The beach was very nice, however extremely crowded; you had to get to the beach by 7am every morning just to reserve chairs. There was also construction going on right beside the beach, not exactly the relaxing atmosphere one would expect on their tropical holiday! Brochure photos of this resort are very misleading. The first thing you notice is this big, beautiful restaurant/bar extending out into the water which is the main focus of every brochure photo I’ve seen. Suprise!!! It isn’t included in your all-inclusive vacation, it is for time share members only! The beach beds that are built on stilts out in the water are also not included…they will cost you a whopping $25 American per day to use!! I have to admit, I did relax and enjoy myself after the first few days of annoyance were over and I was able to get all the problems fixed in my room. However the final day was probably the worst. As our flight home didn’t leave until 10:30pm, we were told we would have a "courtesy room" to shower and clean up before the bus picked us up for the trip to the airport. We found out that the so called "courtesy room" was actually the washroom in the games hall!! It had two shower stalls, a toilet and a sink!! I have travelled extensively all across the Carribbean and I have never seen anything like this!! I have also never seen so many unhappy tourists in one hotel before! The talk on the beach everyday was about how unhappy everyone was with their rooms, the service and the staff! (I also heard people complain about the food, however as I already mentioned, I was actually quite happy with it). Please…save yourself the money and aggrevation and choose another resort!! Or, better yet, don’t go to the Dominican Republic at all, choose a completely different destination!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Judy – Ontario, Canada|
October 2008 Well, we read all of the reviews before we booked and knew what to expect and went with the attitude that we would just ‘take things as they come and not to expect too much’. My Husband and I (in our mid to late 50’s) travel about twice a year and this trip was what I call a ‘sneaker’..we snuck this one in even though our bigger trip was already planned for Feb. 09. How bad could it be? First of all, the resort itself is not a bad place – yes, it needs renovating and they are in fact renovating a lot of the rooms which I will talk about shortly. But the grounds are in nice shape and they do a good job of maintaining them and also the beach. The beach is nice, but we prefer a regular beach with waves and the swimming section here is roped off and reef protected (I believe its a reef – its either that or natural rock but its too far out to tell and you can’t swim to it) and you could not swim over your head. Great for children, but not for us. Beach is a slightly clay type sand and raked every morning. Now the rooms….that has to be the biggest complaint and not only from ourselves. We met many couples who had to change rooms for one reason or another. The first room we were given was in terrible shape and the balcony door did not open at all. Because I’m a smoker and my Husband is not, I do not smoke in the room and therefore needed access outside which made this room unacceptable. The next room was at the extreme end of the resort, facing the ten foot wall (with at least a six foot fence on top of it! – does that tell you about the need for security?) which faces the main road and all the noise and activity of the busy area. The local bar had very loud music which played into the wee hours of the morning. Security guards constantly walked by which I assumed was to protect us all from locals scaling the walls. The mattress on the bed was very worn and sunk in in the centre and I woke up with back aches every morning. We stayed in this room over the weekend until monday at which time we once again asked to be moved. This time we made a big fuss and we checked out the next room before we moved. Again, this third room was not acceptable and was not even as nice as the room we were in. Back to the front desk and after making a considerable fuss they finally gave us a renovated room facing the new olympic pool on the main floor. Now I say renovated (it could possibly have been new instead of renovated, hard to tell) with a grain of salt. Fresh paint, new dresser, somewhat of a new desk, lovely tiles on the floor and bathroom, but they cheaped out on the tub and sink and already they need to be replaced. The toilet leaked and overflowed from the tank but we got the ‘hang of it’ and learned how to flush without overflowing. There were no chairs/couches/lounges in the room, nor were there any pictures. But it was far superior to the previous rooms and the location couldn’t be beat. The food..well there was always something you liked at the buffet. Hot crescent rolls were wonderful if you were lucky enough to get them when they brought them out. Desserts weren’t bad. The meat was what you would expect at most islands – specially the beef; tough and tasteless. The chicken was hacked and in unrecognizeable pieces so I stayed away from that too although my Husband said it was tasty. The Mexican restaurant was very good. Italian was fancier and not bad. We didn’t go to the Domican restaurant. They closed all but one restaurant during the week and opened everything up on the weekend. Not too many were happy about that. Service was better than I thought it would be, and these servers work long and hard days for very little money. Tipping goes a long way and I would advise everyone to tip a couple of dollars for each meal. Two dollars isn’t much to us but its the world to them. We talked to a woman who was raised in the Domican but has lived in New York for many years. She told us that these workers get paid roughtly $120.00 a month; or $5,000.00 per year. The standard of living is no lower than the U.S. or Canada. Although it is all inclusive I believe we should all tip for service…good or average service. We didn’t go on any excursions. Would have liked to but found the afternoon sun too much and also, it seemed pretty scarey to leave the resort. I did see rats by the way..but they came from the area where they’re building and I only saw them very early in the morning and nowhere near the food (although I wasn’t in the area where the food was in the early morning). Overall, we had a nice time although we found it extremely hot, but we would never go back..to this Hotel or to the Domincan.
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Francis ~ New York|
September 2008 Arrival and Flight
Traveled with wife and toddler for a 7 days vacation. Flight arrived on time. Airport transfer by Turinter was already waiting and took us to the hotel within 15 minutes of clearing customs and immigration. Arrived at the hotel Saturday around 8pm and was asked by the front desk personnel to wait in the lobby as the room was not ready. The manager at the front desk was very disorganized, at times even cursing, trying to keep track of available rooms from a piece of hand-written paper. Rooms
After of one hour wait we were sent to a room in the “renovated” area of the hotel, which didn’t even had a door. Back to the lobby and another wait we were sent to different room. After unpacking we were disgusted to see water dripping from the bathroom ceiling. After multiple calls and trips to the front desk I was told to wait in the room for a repair person. Around 2am finally fell asleep. Next morning woke up all sweaty as the A/C wasn’t working during the night. Back to the front desk I was told that the A/C for that whole section of the building was broken. Then I was invited to enjoy the day in the beach as they would be sending a repair person to the room during the day. They promised that by the time we would get back to the room, everything would be properly working. Unfortunately that was not the case. By now it had been more than 24 hours since our arrival and I was back to the front desk requesting that the situation be properly addressed. Finally they agreed on sending us to a different room. On a different floor and wing but still in the same main building. The new room at least had a working A/C but next morning we noticed some water in the bathroom floor and then realized that whenever someone in the room upstairs used either the toilet of bathtub water would leak through the ceiling. Nothing compared to the previous room but still sewage water. Back to the front desk demanding to speak to a manager. It was Monday morning already. I was told manager didn’t arrive until 9am just to be told when the time arrived that he was on vacation. Finally someone from customer service understood our predicament and sent us to a different room in their vacation club area. Very outdated room needing a fresh coat of paint but at least didn’t have a leaking ceiling. Restaurants
Buffett restaurant has acceptable food but it’s obvious they are using food from previous days with different presentations/sauces. After a couple of days it gets to you. Italian restaurant was very good. The Dominican restaurant unremarkable. Both instances, the service a little bit slow. The non-inclusive seafood restaurant has good food and prices comparable to a moderate restaurant in the States. Also the location next to the water is very nice. We didn’t get sick with the food or water during our stay. Bars
Service very attentive. On the other hand, mixed drinks are very suspicious as well as the beer. The tap says President but I have good reasons to believe that’s not what they are serving. Beach and Pools
Beach is very safe for families with small kids. Also they are plenty of palapas. No need to get up early to get a shaded spot. Pool next to the beach was closed due to construction. Overall the maintenance crew makes a great job up keeping the whole area. Grounds Like the beach area the ground are almost immaculate. The landscaping is very well kept and lush. Activities and Entertainment
The shows are entertaining and have something different every night. The entertainment staff tries their best to get you engaged but with a couple of polite refusals they understand. Tours
Given the disappointment with the rooms we were in no mood to be taken for a ride again. Departure and Check Out
At check out they tried to charge me for some snacks and drinks that we supposedly took from the in-room refrigerator. The person at the checkout counter kept on insisting that if the charges were on the record it was because we had consumed the items. I forcefully refused to pay for something that I hadn’t consumed and reminded him that I had been in three different rooms. After failing to contact the person who the reported the items the front desk person told me that he was going to take the equivalent of 20 dollars under his responsibility, which I really doubted, and gave me a clear check-out Conclusion
We left with the sensation that we had waste our time and money by going to that resort. From our experience and comments from the front desk, they are severely overbooking the place thus when they end up with more guests than rooms one is bound to be given the run around until a room becomes available. Granted that they are very cheap but that doesn’t justify putting guests in inhabitable rooms. Exposure to sewage is a very serious health hazard for anyone let alone someone traveling with children. Management seems to care less about this issue as well as others since we came across more than its fair share of other guests complaining about all sort of problem. In no case there’s something as simple as an explanation or apology. On the contrary some of the front desk personal can be rather rude and combative. At times it seems to me that as an business they are counting on their vacation club as a more reliable source of income going into the future. Nothing else can explain their lack of interest or respect for guests. In a nutshell, there’s no way to ever get us back to the Hamaca. For a couple of hundred dollars more one can end up in Punta Cana where one is not treated like cattle and there are better accommodations.
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||John ~ Maryland|
September 2008 Arrival and Flight : Delta September 1 2008
Check-in was fine. We got there at 2:30 and had our room by 3:15 the other couple with us got their room immediately Clerks were very polite and some spoke english. Rooms : #1826 Garden Side. Room very clean typical Caribbean resort. No bugs,plenty of hot water. Only 2 towels but once we talked to maid plenty. Rooms rate: 4 Restaurants: Italian, Dominican very good. Buffet was good as well. Bars: Garden pool bar excellent! Sports bar dead. Mangos good overall:4 Beach and Pools: Garden pool very very nice. Beach pool ok. Beach was awesome. Overall: 4 Grounds : Very clean and maintained daily. Overall :4 Activities and Entertainment : Actually we were there when Hurricane Hanna stalled so a lot of activities were not available but that was not the resorts fault Departure and Check Out: Left Saturday September 6 as Ike was heading in. Conclusion: The reviews on this board is not very true. Many people exaggerated about the negatives. We were here during the worst storm they have in over 10 tears and still were able to have a good time. Do not let the reviews scare you because it a very nice resort and wheel worth the money we paid. We have been to Punta Cana 7 times now and this resort is just as good as any of the other 4/4.5 star ones. I would recommend this resort to mu friends however I recommend not going during Hurricane season!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Marinilda ~ San Juan, Puerto Rico|
July 2008 Rooms: Very poor conditions, outdated, dirty, no hot water, no electricity at least two times a day. Front desk and Customer Service personnel are TERRIBLE!!!!! Restaurants: Flies and bees all over the food. Bars: Good. Beach and Pools: Good. Grounds: Cats, rats and roaches are part of the hotel’s crew. Activities and Entertainment: No live music. Tours: By ourself. The hotel never offered any tour service. Departure and Check Out: the best moment of the vacations… going back to my home. I never heard a polite word from the clerk… such as “Thank for your stay” or something like that. She never looked at my face during the check out; and when she finally pronounced a word, it was…… Next! Conclusion: If you want to waste your time, your patience and your money during your vacations, or if you really, really, need to practice tolerance while receiving the worst service ever….. Go to Oasis Hamaca…… don’t forget. I told you so…….
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Earlene ~ Florida|
July 2008 Arrival and Flight: The flight and arrival went smoothly with transportation prearranged. Rooms: The room was dirty, no towels, no light bulbs in any of the lamps, the toilet seat was broken, the mini bar did not get refilled consistently and the free water did not get refurbished. We tipped the maid but this didnʼt seem to help matters. We spent way too much of our vacation time complaining at the front desk. Our room was on the backside of the property and the only view we got was of the local neighborhood and a woman who liked to run around naked all morning!! We requested a different room but after 2 days we realized that wasnʼt going to happen we decided to unpack. Restaurants: The food was acceptable but certainly not spectacular. The breakfasts were the most disappointing, donʼt expect to eat breakfast by the beach it was terrible. The Dominican restaurant had the best service and the most unique food. Bars: There is no alcohol content in the liquor that they are serving, no matter how much they pour in the glass. Ask for something specific and they will find it under the counter. This took us two days to figure out. The beer is not Presidente even though the tap says that, it is more like OʼDouls (no alcohol content). Beach and Pools: The beach was very small for the size of the resort but it was well maintained. The pool was nice but the hot tub was filled with kids every day even though there is a sign saying no children. The pool closed at 6 pm which was disappointing. Grounds: This was the best part of the place. The grounds were beautiful and well maintained. Activities and Entertainment: Not much to speak of at all. The shows were awful and the casino doesnʼt open until the evening. BEWARE of the casino!!!! They are running a scam at the door for a new game, although we didnʼt get taken we talked to and watched people lose thousands of dollars. Tours: The half day tour into Santo Domingo was the only one we went on. We had never been there and they took us to some very depressed areas. Departure and Check Out: No problems, we just wanted to check out two days earlier. Conclusion: We were extremely disappointed and felt like we wasted our money. Realize that it will cost you another $100 in tips while you are there. The city is not safe to walk around in and we are pretty daring people. There is nothing to see if you want to go snorkeling off of the beach except for some 2 inch fish. We will never go back to this resort and I am afraid that it has soured us on all inclusive resorts and the Dominican Republic.
Top of Page June 2008 Airport Arrival: Went well we had prearrange prepaid transport to and from the resort. I do have to say that it didn’t go smoothly. We were expecting our van to be there waiting for us, but we ended up waiting more than a half hour. Check in: We waited over an hour for check-in. While checking in I wanted to make sure that we got our rooms that were reserved which was lower level poolview rooms and I reserved two rooms. We had my husband and I and my mother-in-law and teenage daughter with us. I wanted the rooms side by side and also lower level due to the fact that my mother in law has bad knees and she has difficulty doing the stairs. After getting our room keys and being reassured by the guy who checked us in, that is what we are getting, we proceeded to our rooms which were located at the opposite end of the resort and redeption desk. It took about five minutes to walk with luggage in hand. We did have the option having our luggage delivered by bellboys, but chose to take our own luggage. We did have some bellboys meet us half way and they proceeded to show us where our rooms were. The rooms were located on the second floor, street view, and also opposite ends of the building. The bellboy did call to the front desk who directed us to the lower level pool view room and one lower level street view room. He told us that the room located next door of our pool view room will open up the next day. Well we had no choice to take these rooms. All said and done we didn’t get that other room until three days into our trip. The front desk service is very unorganized and no communication between employees. Our Stay for the week: We ended up moving into our new room pool view by the third day. The first night in this room when we woke up the next day we discovered that we had our camera missing in our room and my daughters camera and MP3 player were missing in their room. We notified security and it took the rest of our vacation to try and get this resolved. We were treated like criminals even though our stuff were stolen. After talking with several other vacationers, we weren’t the only ones. We did leave to go back to the states without anything being resolved. If you value your valuables either keep them with you or hopefully they will have a key available for the room safe which these keys are scarce. when asked to speak with the manager, the response we got all week was that he was busy. Upon checking out at the end of our trip we noticed they tried to charge us with drinks in the minibar in our room. I did tell the lady at the front desk that I wasn’t going to pay for something I didn’t consume. She then directed us to the vacation club desk and said they had to deal with it. I again asked to speak with management and they put me off. All said and done the charges were taken off and we were able to check out in just enough time to meet our transportation to the airport. Overall experience: I would not recommend this resort to anyone. I was on edge the whole vacation and did not enjoy this week at all. Most of the time was spent either at the reception desk changing rooms or with security trying to resolve the issues with the missing items, which was never resolved when we left the resort at the end our stay. This resort is also located right in town which is a bad town. They do have security posted, but not enough. It seemed to be the norm with people changing rooms and also items being stolen. This weeks vacation was not a vacation at all. This is the first time while on vacation that I felt uneasy and didn’t have a good time. I was happy to be coming back home. I would not recommend this resort at all for anyone, young or old.
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Courtney ~ USA|
May 2008 Background:
A friend and I traveled to the Oasis Hamaca on April 19th until the 25th. We booked it through Liberty Travel. We are Americans. I am early 30s and my friend is early 20s. All we looked for in a trip was a good time and a nice place to stay. I personally have been to Punta Cana twice and was excepting a similar experience… I had stayed at the Melia Caribe Tropical in punta Cana and it was amazing. Airport arrival:
We flew continental and the flight went great. We got there and had zero problems. Went through customs without a problem we got our bags and then headed out to find our transport. That is where it got a little tricky. A guy came and told us to go with him… his shirt matched what was on our vouchers. "Prieto tours". We waited about 5 minutes and then he took our bags and rushed off to the bus… You have to chase them because they tell you nothing and just go. So we got to the bus and he put our bags on and walks up to me and puts his hand out and said "tip". So I gave him 5 dollars (we only had 2 bags). He then walked up to my friend and said "tip" to her! That annoyed us! That was our first greedy experience. Check-in:
We arrived around 12 so our room wasn’t ready. We were able to get our bathing suits and such and store our bags for the day. We went to the beach until approx 4 while we waited for our room. We were told to be back at 3. We went back at 4 and we had to wait about another 30 minutes to get our room. We went to our room which was on the pool side which was #18. We got to it and 2 problems. One it was right by the outside wall and a gate that they claimed was closed and no one comes in… But then the bell hop walked through the gate and got a coconut… so obviously it wasn’t locked. We went in the room and it had one king size bed. We obviously need 2 beds! So we went back to the front desk. It only took about 10 minutes to fix this and get the proper room. So basically the check in went fine… just be patient… have money in your hand… they are greedy and will attend to you better if they think they are getting money. We didn’t work with "smelinton" but supposedly he is great! Our Room:
Our room was 920 it was just fine. We had two very comfy beds that had a warm blanket and comforter…which was great to have because we referred to our room as the "icebox" the air worked great! But it had only 2 ways… really cold or not! Ha. We didn’t have a balcony… but who really needs one? The bathroom was kind of gross but it did the job. The shower was very confusing. Everyone said the same thing. You have to put the cold water on for a few minutes then really slowly put on the hot. You’ll get it. I am 5’10" so I had to bend down to take a shower… but that I am used to. Our TV didn’t work. We called to the desk and it took about 6 hours and 3 phone calls before they came. The second call they said that someone already came and fixed it… but that wasn’t true. They finally came and fixed it and we had lots of channels. Towels are annoying to get. They give you 2 we needed 4. We had to call down to get them for the first 3 days. We would call at like 5:00 just before our nap and then we would call again at like 8 as we were getting in the shower. We got smart and started hiding our towels. We didn’t mind reusing them… thye just kept taking them. The mini bar had items in it that were free and to buy. We didn’t even touch it. We just wanted to keep our bottles of water in it. We got charged for cookies but we didnʼt’ touch them. So we tried to work it out and when we went to guest services she wanted nothing to do with us and kept looking past us trying to see if there was a better option one where she would make money off of us. Once we held money in our hand they pay more attention. It took us 2 visits to guest services to get this taken care of. We didn’t have to pay for the cookies… but they locked our fridge after that… they showed us! Layout/Facilities:
The resort is really nice… it is split into 2 parts. Pool side and Ocean side. It is separated by a street (wish I knew that) there is a guard there to make sure you are safe… but the locals are on the outskirts waiting to try and get you to buy somethign… but they are not bad at all. The pool side has the Mexican restaurant, the buffet, and the pool. The beach side has obviously the beach, the Italian and Dominican restaurants and another buffet. There are 2 bars one inside and one outside. There is a pool but it is a very small one and we didn’t go near it. There was construction going on this part of the resort so there was a bit of noise… but no big deal. Part of the pool was closed off for construction. The Beach:
The beach was really nice. We got down everyday by like 9am and never had a problem getting chairs. We never used the huts but from what I understand you have to get down at like 630 am in order to get one… but people share! Everyone is so nice. We met some really great people who have been to the same resort for 12 years in a row! There is water aerobics and such at around 10 am and the music is loud and fun… but it only lasts for 30 or so minutes… they "entertainers" come around every so often… but if you just tell them no.. They go away… they are great… they want to make you laugh and hve fun… We took our chairs into the water most of the days and just relaxed for hours upon end. Now… that is important… I am a tanning queen! I have used oil and Iodine my entire life and never have gone about 4 or 8 in NJ… but the sun is strong in DR. I wore 15 every day and reapplied constantly… I didn’t burn at all… the last day 7 days later… i didn’t use 15 and I used 8 and 6… Well I burnt! So use block! You still get tan. My students can’t believe how tan I am… so be smart… unless you want to peel! Waterfront Recreation:
We only kayaked… we were more interested in the the sun tan. But there were lots of really great things… like the banana boat and the paddle boats. There is snorkeling and much more… but honeslty we didn’t do any of it… again…getting tan was pretty much our goal! Restaurants/food:
We ate twice at the Italian restaurant – first time was yummy… got risotto with shrimps… that cracked me up, they put s on everything. The second time we went it wasn’t so good and they didn’t have much… but you are in domincan republic not Italy! The Mexican restaurant (the only open air restaurant besides the buffet) we went to the first night. I thought it was really good. We didn’t go back but it was good. We ate once at the Dominican restaurant. That was interesting and different but yummy. The food is pretty good! We didn’t do the buffets for dinner at all. We went to El’ Pelicano for dinner 2 times. We had the lobster and let me tell you it was sooooo goood.. Totally worth paying extra. Plus the restaurant is gorgeous and the view is amazing! Totally worth going. Breakfast was great. Went to the pool side buffet… just got eggs and delicious oatmeal and fruit. Lunch kind of stinks not much of an option… basically we had cheeseburgers… which were strangly delicious! There is a 24 hour pizza bar… really good! There is also a 24 hour food bar somewhere. But we didn’t stay up 25 hours to need it. Casino:
didn’t play at the casino walked through… looked nice. Entertainment:
There was a show every night at 945. Each night was different. We saw the tropical night and Michael Jackson night… they were pretty good. The other nights we didn’t make it to the shows because we were at dinner late… caught the end each night. We were looking forward to the beach night but because of rain they didnʼt have the fire breathing dancers and such… Tipping:
This is where I became very annoyed. Tips are included in our package deal, but I brought with me $100 in ones and $100 in fives with the intention of tipping… However I am not much of a fan of when someone expects a tip. The first experience that I explained before with the prieto tour people that was not fun. Then when we got to the hotel we experienced the same type of greed there. The bartenders were great. They were very helpful… but I did find that I would get waited on if I had money in my hand d far quicker then I would if I didn’t. Also the person who works for Priento tours was a real jerk… he iddn’t want anything to do with us once he found out we weren’t going to go on any excursions. Also we had to talk to guest relations once and while we were talking to her she kept looking past us to see if there was someone better. Once I pulled out a 10 dollar bill I got all the attention I needed. I didn’t give it to her though… I held it and had what we needed taken care of and walked away… Same thing during breakfast. No one really came up to you during the meal (to get coffee or water) but after we were finished and we pulled out tip 3 or 4 waiters would be hovering over our table… interesting. It is a very greedy resort… I will not go back for that main reason! Punta Cana was so much better! Safety:
The resort was very very safe. You do need to cross the street to get to the pool but there is a security guard at the crosswalk. The locals are not permitted to cross the resort. Shopping:
We did go into town. Here’s what you do… Walk to the end of the resort on the beach by the water sports. Look to there right. There is a little house that you walk through… that is the entrence or I guess you can say exit… when you get out there are tons of locals waiting to pounce! Basically the teenagers will follow you. What they do is help you find the best deals. I wanted a ring and they brought me to the perfect place. I wanted tortuous bracelets and they brought us to another perfect place… They really know where the best deals are! And the barter for you. The store wanted 50 for the ring I got and I said 30 the lady said no and kept strong at 50 and the teenager started fighting with them and then said to me… no we go…. and took me out of the store… next thing i know the store owner came out saying 28! I am sure it is some kind of scam… but it was fine… I gave the kid a couple of dollars and that is all they want! What to Bring:
Extra extra sun block! Aloe… I lived with aloe on me at night! It saved me. I didn’t bring a sweater… I wish I did for the nights… between sunburn and that it gets cool at night… Coming back to the United States: Very easy! We went back to the airport 2 hours before. We went with our tour company… but you can take a cab for $25.00. Customs in the US were simplistic it seemed. No problems. Got our bags real quick. The definitely went through my bags though, I had a bag with a plastic bag in it with all my toiletries in it and it was ripped open. Our Thoughts Overall: It was a beautiful resort and amazing weather… The entertainers were amazing… It was the staff in the restaurants and customer service that was greedy. You need to be very patient… you will wait to get anything you want! We will not go back to this resort… Punta Cana so much better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Stephanie ~ Florida|
April 2008 Arrival and Flight: beware of the greeters at airport who tell outright, you tip me and his partner when the only thing they have done is flag down your transport to your hotel. Rooms : Booked into the Gardens of Oasis Hamaca, King The cleaning service were below what a resort of this type should be providing. Towels were a premium and wash cloths were very limited (3 in seven days) Showers were not clean on a daily basis. Soda and beer bottles from previous guest were still left in bath vanity and the wall mirrows had handprints from previous guest and they were still there when I left(7 days later). Floor was only scrubbed once during my week-long stay. Room was not attended to until late in the day 3-4 pm, which was inconvenient for me as a guest when after a morning at the beach I wanted to take a afternoon nap. None of the amenities that you would get in the states such as shampoo/lotion. Restaurants : Nice variety of options, however, I was a concerned about the open air buffet presentation of foods with birds flying through the area. Beach and Pools: Nice beach and pool areas Grounds: Grounds well kept(maybe they should switch the grounds crew to housekeeping, they were more efficient at what they do) Activities and Entertainment : Nice evening shows Tours : Great tours, Santo Domingo, Safari and San Pedro Departure and Check Out : The person that handled my checkout was rude, she did not answer my questions about billing and went on to take another guest while I was still standing there, I had to get her attention twice to complete my check-out. Bell person was efficient in getting my transportation for me in a timely manner. Conclusion: The service level at this resort is in much need of an overhaul. I’ve received better service at a Super8. Customer Service training for all, management included would greatly benefit the resort. As a guest I was frequently told to come back in 20-30 minutes because the person who does that is not here now (cross-training). There seems to be a defecit in managements understanding of staffing and workflow. Staff according to the guest needs, not the staffs. Items such as buffing floors should be done during the off peak guest activity level to avoid accidents and guest inconvenience. Finally, I would not recommend this resort to others, unless you are young and want to eat, drink and party and have no priority for service.
Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Bonnie ~ Ontario|
March 2008 Arrival – Check-in was fast and friendly. One of our rooms wasn’t ready when we arrived but that was corrected within a few minutes. There had been some fresh painting done. Rooms – Rooms were spacious and nicely decorated. Restaurants – There are five excellent restaurants in the hotel. One, an ocean front sea food restaurant, El Pelicano, is not included in the all-inclusive but is well worth the extra money. Bars – We only went to the open air bars but they were great. The drinks were good and so was the service. Bartenders are friendly and helpful and do their best to converse in your language, whatever it may be. Beach and Pools – The beach was beautiful and clean. There was the odd bit of garbage that floated in but the resort had no control over that and cleaned it up daily. There were lots of activities going on at all times. The pools are very well maintained and they are in the process of building a new one at the beach. Grounds – The grouns are very well maintained and clean and they put a lot of effort into landscaping. Activities – There were nightly shows at the theatre and sometimes on the beach. There were exercise classes and volley ball games going on all the time. You could also take free diving lessons in the pool or use a paddle boat in the ocean. Tours – There were a variety of daily tours leaving from the hotel. Conclusion – We enjoyed our visit very much. The only problem we encountered was a shortage of hot water in one of our rooms and they did not stock our mini bar with what was supposed to be included. We did not consider this a big problem though because we spent very little time in our rooms.
Top of Page March 2008 The Complete Oasis Hamaca Travelers Review/Guide Background:
Full disclosure, we traveled to the Oasis Hamaca in late February, early March 2008 for a 6-night stay booked through Expedia. We are an American late twenties, early thirties couple. Our only expectations for the resort were a beach and good weather. What we experienced far exceeded those expectations. I hope to give the reader some tips on how to make their stay go well, and to shed some light on some of the resort¹s weaknesses. Airport arrival:
We arrived around 2:00 in the afternoon, quickly got our luggage and headed for immigration and customs. As a visitor you are required to purchase a Tourist card for $10 USD per person. (they only accept American currency). After filling out the forms, you must then hand in your card at immigration. Contrary to what we had read, you do not need this for your flight out of the country, and will not be charged a departure tax either. Once out of the airport, we were looking for a travel company (Hotel Beds) that we booked through Expedia for shuttle service from the airport to the hotel and back. We had our vouchers, but couldn¹t find our representative. Be aware, the local Taxi drivers will be happy to take you, but you will pay about $25 for this. In the confusion, we were being aggressively courted to go in the taxi (to the point that they had our luggage almost in the car). At that point, I said, ³WAIT!² and we took our luggage back and asked for assistance from another vendor. This was the only confusion due to the language barrier for the whole trip. The trip to the hotel is a quick 15 minutes at most. Check-in:
We were a little nervous about check-in and of course, had no idea what to expect. When we arrived, the guests need to leave their baggage out by the front entrance where it is watched by the Bellhops. We knew we were early, so we did not expect to get our room right away. They told us to return at 3:00 and our room would be ready. Tip: Call your travel representative ahead of time to have them confirm your room. We requested a non-smoking, king-sized bed in our room. We then walked around the resort to get the lay of the land. When we went back, our room was ready, but they did not have a lock-box key available. I tipped the check-in person $20 and asked if her could reserve one for us as people checked-out. He did and the next day at noon, we had our lock-box key. I tipped another $10 and he did not charge us for the key (normally $3 a day). Our Room:
Our room was in the main building room 114. It was an ocean view room, although we did not pay the price for one, nor request one. It overlooked the new pool, the beach and the ocean beyond that. From the beach side, it was one story up from ground level, but one story down from the main reception area. The room was very clean, large and everything worked. The pillows were a little lumpy, but otherwise fine. Overall, the room was a little worn, but nothing to worry about, or to detract from the fact that you overlook the ocean from your balcony. Tip, each day, you get two large bottles of water that are placed outside your mini-fridge. Those are complimentary. You also get two beers and two sodas a day from your mini-fridge. Those are also complimentary. Everything else you will be charged for. We didn¹t need anything from the mini-fridge, as it was all so easy to get elsewhere. We also tipped the maid $3 USD a day, as a result, she gave us three large bottle of water a day and added nice little touches to make the room even nicer. Our room was usually cleaned by 8:30 a.m. each day. Noise: The only real complaint was the first two nights we were interrupted by a lot of noise from the 24-hour bar near the beach and the upstairs neighbors. The air conditioner worked so well and was so quiet, that it did not produce any ³white² noise to block out these sounds. The final four nights were so quiet, we did not know what was going on. We slept well. Construction of the new pool is over and everything looks wonderful. Layout/Facilities:
The resort has two sections. The first is the main building, which is the hub of activity. The reception, guest services, casino, 5 bars, two pools (the new pool is beautiful), the Italian restaurant, Dominican restaurant, spa, Sports bar, pizzeria, retail shops and lounge. Of course the main building is also on the beach and was our main reason for booking this hotel. The other part of the resort if the garden section. Beautiful landscaping and also near the buffet, Mexican restaurant, most nightly entertainment, and street vendors that are brought in for a market. This side also includes the largest and most beautiful pool and swim-up bar. This side also hosts the mini-golf and tennis courts. It also seems quieter than the beach side. Beach:
The beach is a happening place. If you are looking for solitary relaxation with just the sounds of the waves crashing on shore, then you should either hang out at the beach before 9:30 a.m. or go to another resort. Tip: If you want to get a covered beach spot, go down early 6:00 a.m. and lay out your blue beach towels (provided from the dive shop, complimentary, don¹t lose them or you¹ll pay $20 each) on your chairs. They are safe. I would go down about 7:30 and grab a couple of chairs and pull them next to the waters edge. This was a very peaceful time of day. Then back up to the room to get ready for breakfast. Around 11:00 or so, the beach activities would begin with aerobics, bocce ball, contests etcŠ The music is played loud and constantly, however, we were at the end of the beach, so it did not bother us. Also, be warned, it is a topless beach, usually there was a half to a dozen topless women. If this bothers you, then be warned, however, it was not rampant. Waterfront Recreation:
The waterfront recreation is run by Dive Pro and a bunch a really laid back guys. You can SCUBA or take lessons in the pool, kayak, snorkel, windsurf, sail (sunfish), paddleboat, power dinghy¹s, banana boat, water-ski and tube. All non-powered stuff is included. I sailed for four days up and down Boca Chica Beach. TIP, due to crowds, there is no sailing after 12:00 on Saturdays and at all on Sundays. We also snorkeled, which was fun. I brought my own gear, but they have plenty as well. If you go out past the swimming area, there is some real neat shallow water snorkeling. I also kayaked and paddle boated. A very cool way to see the rest of the public beach. Restaurants/food:
We ate twice at the Italian restaurant, three times at the Mexican restaurant (the only open air restaurant besides the buffet and sports bar) and once at the Dominican restaurant. All were excellent and you never left hungry. At each one you would get a complimentary welcome drink, appetizer, entrée and dessert. Additionally, there was always some sort of salad bar. We tipped each waiter $10 USD each night and our service was excellent. The Italian bar had a pianist playing during dinner as well. This also seemed to be the most popular of the three, but we liked the Mexican one best. We usually at around 7-7:30 and there was never a wait, but there did seem to be a rush at 6:30. We ate all breakfasts at the buffet, which was great. Wonderful selection, fresh food, cooked to order and the coffee is amazing. We also tipped here as well, including the guy that made my omelets each day. For lunch, we could not tear ourselves away from the beach, so we had pizza most days. TIP: The pizza is popular and sometimes there is a long line. Just wait for it to go away and know that most pizza comes out every few minutes. Casino:
We played $10 in the slots, one $50, cashed in and walked out. It was clean and no one tried to push us to play anything. TIP: The casino has the only pay phone that you can use a CommuniCard at to make calls back home without being charged a connection fee. Entertainment:
Each night, there was entertainment planned. Most of it was great! Tropical show, beach party (on the beach with a full bar, fire breathing dancers and live meringue music, magic show, etcŠ The performers are good and it was nice to ³go out². Tipping:
We tipped $1 per round of drinks, $10 to the waiter each night, a total of $30 at check-in, $3 per day for the maid, $3 for the shuttle driver, and all kinds of misc. people that provided service for us. We spent somewhere around $125 on tipsŠwell worth it. Safety:
We felt safe the entire time we were there. There are tourist police at each end of the beach and while crossing from one end of the resort to the other. We were never approached or solicited by anyone. What to Bring: We brought sunscreen, books, snorkel gear and a few hundred in small bills.
Otherwise, buy your calling card at the retail store. We brought bug spray, but did not use it once, nor did we need to. TIP: Most staff understands some English and speaks it; some are fluent in up to five different languages. However, it helps to know some Spanish like: hello, goodbye, thank you, no thank you, how are you today and have a nice day.
Coming back to the United States:
At the airport there are a few nice duty free shops. Each person is allowed up to three bottles of alcohol and up to $800 worth of merchandise before having to pay a duty on it. However, once you arrive in the states, if you are then going on a connecting flight (I.E. JFK initial arrival, then connect to go to Maine) you must pack your goods in the checked luggage because you will be required to go back though security. We bought two pounds of coffee, some rum and vanilla. Our Thoughts Overall:
We had a wonderful time and would not change a thing. With that in mind, since this was our first experience with an all-inclusive and the Caribbean, we would probably go someplace else, but we are not typically people to repeat visits. There were several people that we witnessed that were unhappy with there room. On one morning, the beach level rooms below us were flooded because the septic overflowed. Some people were unhappy because they wanted to be on the beach, not in the garden section, others wanted the opposite. The computer system for reservations seems to be woefully outdated and unable to handle the number of people and requests. I even heard that the hotel was overbooked and some people were being put up in other hotels. You can guard against this by confirming ahead of time. TIP: If you want a decent room with a decent view, I suggest any room from 100-115, 200-215 and 300-315. This will put you in a room that overlooks the beach, new pool and ocean. The 200 and 300 level rooms will put you mostly above the palm trees. Although, from our room, we still had an incredible view. Any room above 115,215 or 315 on those floors will put you closer to the 24-hour bar and possibly give you an obstructed view. If you want quiet all day and plan on spending time in your room during the day, I recommend elsewhere, but be advised, the pools shut down by 6:00 or so, and are strictly off limits, so don¹t worry about that kind of noise. The strongest asset to this resort is there staff, food and wonderful weather and beach. Enjoy!
Top of Page January 2008 My wife and I spent a week at Oasis Hamaca in Boca Chic and had a good time. We are in our mid 50’s travel a fair amount but this was our first time at an all inclusive resort though we have done a few cruises. I actually lived in the DR for a year in the 70s when I was in the Peace Corps this is my first time back. I do speak rusty basic Spanish. The trip down was easy getting the luggage, customs, transport to the resort and check in was a breeze. Room-We were in Room 001 the first one on the ground floor beachfront on the Duarte St. side of the resort. It was a bit worn scratches on the furniture and some scuffs on the walls but big, comfortable and very clean. I loved the location of this room just walk out the sliding glass door and you were on the beach in 30 seconds. I also enjoyed sitting on the patio during the afternoon and evenings. The maid, like all the workers, was great I tipped her $5 a couple of times and there were lots of towels, water and the room was always meticulously cleaned. Food – Sometimes it was very good but always lots or choices and very adequate. I loved the Boca Chica fish in the Dominican you do have to deal with the bones but very tasty. The Italian was very good, great tenderloin one day, seafood the next the Tex Mex had good ribs. I never ate dinner in the buffet and ate at each restaurant twice and didn’t need reservations never waited more than 10 minutes but there is kind of a rush at about 8:30. For breakfast or lunch I either ate at the buffet or the place on the beach (Mangos?). During the main meal times they serve a smaller version of the buffet on the beach. Also if you want something you don’t see ask and they will try and get it for you. Beach- I enjoyed it a lot, a little crowded at times but fun. There was some (very) shallow water snorkeling that could be done right off the beach not fantastic but quite a few fish and some fan coral. They run a boat to the other side of the reef for $18 for better snorkeling each day at about noon. I brought my own mask and fins so every day I went off the beach and once with the snorkel trip. Staff – Universally great, friendly, courteous and if I asked for something they always tried to satisfy me whether it was food, towels, water, booze, music. The staff was a big part of why I enjoyed the resort. The much complained about construction – no big deal. They were building the pool right in front of my room it was never dusty or dirty and only noisy a couple of times for a few minutes. I actually enjoyed talking to the workers building the pool had a couple of rums with them at the end of the day, very nice people. Only complaint about the resort was the noise from the recreation staff at the beach I hate that techno/disco/ragatone or whatever it is but I’m kind of and old man give me Salsa and Meringue anytime and actually I wouldn’t mind some piece and quiet. This wasn’t a problem at night only during the day. Boca Chica- Duarte St is fine during the day and enjoyable to walk. The Tourist Police were quite visible but that doesn’t mean the locals won’t be trying to sell you something you don’t need for 10 times what it worth. It does get pretty sleazy at night. Boca Chica Public Beach- If you are there on a Sunday or holiday you have to walk the local beach it is a show unto itself, families, kids, old men playing Dominoes, music and salesmen. The Dominicans take there families, kitchen and living rooms and transport them to the beach for a party. Fishing- I am a fishing nut so I brought a three piece travel saltwater rod and some tackle. There are a number of options for fishing. If you walk down Boca Chica beach there is a sports fishing pier, you can see it from the Hamaca Beach. There are a variety of charters available from full blown 30+ Foot Sports Fisherman for $500 to $800 for ½ or full day to modified Yolas (the local open fishing boats16’ to 20’ fitted with mono and wire trolling rods) $40 -$50 and hour. I really didn’t want to spend a lot of money or leave my wife for hours while I went fishing so I took another route. Almost every morning I was out early walking the beach casting I did catch some small jacks and a small barracuda. The second morning I was fishing off the pier of the Pelican restaurant and some local guys came by in a yola catching bait. I called them over and they were willing to take me out for $10 an hour. This is a basic boat, they fish with hand lines, didn’t speak any English and you supply your own tackle though the next day they did come back with fresh ballyhoo for bait. I had fun with them they took me out to the point to the east and we caught big barracuda, spanish mackerel (that’s what I think they were) and jacks. Side trips- We took two side trips during the week and probably would have done another but do to a change of schedule I couldn’t arrange the other trip. We went to Santo Domingo by public bus and back by taxi in was fun and the bus trip was easy, enjoyable and cheap. I hired a driver and went to Jarabacoa and that was fantastic there is a there is a more detained description of the side trips in the trip report section of the DR1 website. On the whole the trip was very enjoyable but AIs are probably not for me I like to get out in to the local culture more.
Top of Page December 2007
This is long over due. I have stayed at the hamaca 4 times from 2003 to 2005. All 4 times where great. Is was coral hamaca all the times I have been there so cant comment on how it is now that its oasis. I have only stayed in garden rooms but they have all been fine other than the smell of mildew, but its in a tropical country so its to be expected. The pool on the garden side has a great swim up bar a a very large hot tub, but be aware of the many children that play in the hot tub. The beach bar did have last I was there 2 of my good friends Zoro and Cecil. They are both happy to serve. I did visit the hamacas sister resort the coral costa caribe once and I thought that the hamaca is a much better 4 star resort. I have not used the casino and never will due to other guests being cheated out of there money. But the casino is not managed by the hotel, so if your cheated the hotel cant do anything about it.So consider your self warned. I have stayed up the road at don juan resort and I can definitely see the difference in a 3 star compared to a 4 star. If you diside to stay here please remember that some of the resort employees go by dominican time and it may be a longer 10 minutes than you may be used to. And be aware of the vacation club people. They are voltures just waiting to jump on there victims. If you say no I am broke, it is still not going to protect you from them the next time you walk by. Most of the vacation club promoters can speak english, french, italian, german, and of course spanish. So when you walk by them pretend you don’t speak any of those languages and you should be ok. LOL. The beach is private so you don’t have to many vendors trying to sell things to you well you are relaxing. The chocolate friends are the men and women who try to get all the guests involved in activities. They are all so friendly and they work 12 to 14 hours a day. I find tips go a long way with most of the employees here. And lastly if you diside to check the hamaca out for a holiday, just have an open mind and remember that if you treat the employees with respect if things are not perfect, I am sure they will do what they can to provide a great holiday.
Top of Page December 2007
We stayed 6 days, 11/9/07 – 11/14/07 at the Oasis Hamaca Resort and enjoyed every minute of it. The flights, airport transfer and check in at the resort could not have gone better. The checkout for just a fast and efficient. Cheap Caribbean and Oasis Hamaca took care of everything. We were checked in our room within a hour of landing at the airport. For the price we paid the resort was excellent and we had such a great time. The room was not lush or fancy but was clean and spacious and more than adequate. The food and the amenities at the resort were great. We ate at the restaurants for dinner and the buffets for breakfast and lunch and there was always a good variety. Everywhere we went we got first class service. The beach and grounds are beautiful and clean . The staff (especially the entertainment staff) is so fun and as friendly as they get. I met many great people on my trip and can’t wait to go back. I have been back from my vacation almost a month now and I still cannot get over what a wonderful 6 day vacation we had for such a small price. I will definitely book my next trip with Cheap Caribbean and will go back to the Oasis Hamaca Resort in the Dominican Republic.
Top of Page November 2007 Arrival
Got there at 830pm on friday. There actually was a bus to pick everyone up but we were unaware so we cabbed it, which was probably better because we beat a plane full of ppl back to the checkin. Checked in right away. The clerk seemed pre occupied but had us out in 10 mins. Room
Had a garden room. Got the king size bed we requested, room was clean, just a small leak from the toilet that had a slightly wet bathroom floor all week. They did use 2 double sheets overlapping to cover the king bed which was kind of a pain. Keep your door closed at all times, mosquitos get in really fast. For some reason the maids crank the AC all the way when they leave so you return to an ice cold room every day. Got 2 fresh bottles of water everyday. Restuarants
Fantastic food. Buffet was always great with lots of selection. Mexican resuarant was decent. Italian was Amazing! Dominican was good too. The beach grill was just like a grill back home. Pizza was very good and fresh ones coming up every 20 mins or so. We found a little lupole, we had 2 couples and they only wrote down one room number so we doubled up on our a le carts. Most of the staff was very good with the odd bad apple, but that is no different than home so I had no complaints. Bars
The bar service was great. We tipped the pool bar guy a couple of bucks and we were front of the line and would have drinks ready for us as we walked up. One tip though, stay away from the beer. The tap says el presidente but the beer is not el presidente. They mix the drinks so strong you have to ask for weaker ones. Grounds
The landscaping was fantastic. The pool and area were kept very clean. There was some construction going on near the buffet and at the casino, but we were far away and it didnt bother us at all. There are lots of guys on motorcycles trying to sell you drugs and prostitues on the road between the beach and the garden, but a quick glance at the security guard sends them on their way. Beach
The beach was fantastic, very nice groomed sand. Lots of seats available, but if you wanted a hut you had to get up at 6 Am and beat all the old folks that just leave their stuff there and claim it for the whole day(even though there are only there for a small portion of it.) Snorkelling was decent inside the reef, but you have to watch for the boats flying only feet past you. Past the reef it is a little choppy but it gets better and deeper the further out you go. We used the paddle boats, windsurfer, and sail boats. All a lot of fun, but not too much wind. Extra Curricular
We did 4 scuba dives within boca chica. Visibility was decent 50′ or so, only because Noel had stirred things up a week before. Lots of coral, fishes, rays, eels… and jelly fish. The dive shop was probably the most professional and well run place out of anywhere I went. One tip though, do not bring your own gear. It cost 55 for 1 dive without gear, and 50 for a dive with gear, so i lugged a lot of stuff for very little savings. They also dont include wetsuit rental in the price. Its an extra 7US and they say you need it, but you do not. The water was 82F at 90 feet and I did multiple dives without getting cold. We did a tour to Catalina island which was awsome. stopped at 2 place to snorkel, which where both amazing. Got a hot lunch cooked for us on the island. All drinks, food, cabs, boats for 60US which is pretty good. We did a Quad tour through the sugar can fields that I quite enjoyed. Though safety was not a huge concern(as with most things dominican). They took us out onto the highway doing 70 km/hr without so much as asking if we had driven one before. The damn thing kept stalling and it wouldnt start. We had to get it jumped 2 times, then we just got towed back when we were close to home. A lot of fun though! We went into santo domingo with a tour guide from the hotel. He wanted 100US for the tour but we talked him down to 50. Not much of a tour though, he showed us a few sights and explained them…in spanish. My gf understood enough to get the just of it. He then dropped us off in the colonial village and let us shop. Night life The disco at the beach was horrible. Always empty and kinda shady looking. The casino was sketchy looking. I did not feel safe in it at all and it was full of prostitutes. We went out to a boca chica bar with one of the staff members. Drinking and driving seems to be ok in the dominican…
I did not feel safe at all in the abr they we went to. We were the only caucasians there and everyone was staring at us. When the 4 of us got up to dance, they all left the floor. It cost a local 2US for a beer but it was 6US when we tried to buy one. Stay away from the boca chica clubs as I think it is where staff members go to get away from gringos, not see more of them.
Conclusion We payed 1400CAN for the entire trip including excursions and suvineers. It was very much worth while. There was a small problem obtaining towels throughout the day, but I didnt really use one all that much so it didnt bother me. I would recommend this place to anyone. I probably wont go back here just because I want to see other areas of the country, but I quite enjoyed it!!! Top of Page
|Oasis Hamaca||Joya ~ Vancouver, BC, Canada|
November 2007 Arrival – Arrived at 8:30 pm. Fri. Nov. 9/07 for one week. Five or six desk clerks to assist. This went very smoothly. There was 4 couples in our group. 3 couples were assigned garden rooms and one couple a ocean view in the hotel (1st floor). No safe keys left. They said the hotel was full and new keys hadn’t arrived yet. It took 3 days to finally get safe keys. It was a pain in the butt dragging all our money and passports around with us. Rooms – The garden rooms are a nice size. We had to ask for a mini bar and within 10 mins. it was there with our 2 beer and 2 coke in it. You have to hunt down the guy each day for replacements. The room had one double size bed (lumpy). Not two queen or a king like advertised. Although the sofa pulled out into a bed and I used that. Maid came every day to clean and leave 2 big bottles of water. The couple who got the ocean front room on the 1st floor had a HUGE room and a king size bed. I believe this is the room they use for the video of the hotel. Their view was of a future site for another swimming pool. We didn’t notice much construction noise, although the hotel is under going lots of upgrades. Take a few air fresheners for the room. Makes it a bit nicer. The large pool is in the middle of the Garden rooms complexes. Restaurants – Excellent food. Both the buffets and restaurants. We tipped $5.00 a couple for the evening meals. The waiters were very attentive.
Big buffet, pizza hut and burger bar right at the beach. Also two beach bars. Bars – Very good drinks. Friendly faces. We usually tipped one or two dollars a couple of times through out the day. It is not expected but much appreciated and you get even better service. Swim up bar at the Garden swimming pool. Beach and Pools – Very clean and tidy. Grounds – Beautiful.
There is quite afew steps to reach the beach from the Garden rooms. But they go through gardens and are quite nice. There is also an elevator. We packed up for the day at the beach and didn’t have to come back to the room till it was time to get ready for dinner or take a nap. There is a little road that goes through the middle of the property, but there is very little traffic (mostly the odd motorcyle) and a security guard is posted at the crossing. Activities – Lots. We did the water exercises every day. Tours – We did the 1/2 Santo Domingo tour. Others in our group did the full day Santo Domingo tour and the Safari tour. They enjoyed them all. Although there is alot of vendors at each stop. They can be quite aggressive, but just keep walking saying no thank you. Conclusion – The casino is a mess, they are totally gutting it. It is up and running at night under dirty conditions. It should be finished soon. We don’t go to the casino so it didn’t bother us. A tip to make your trip less stressful is to take your own face cloth and hand towel. They don’t seem to have these down there. We even took our own beach towels in case they didn’t have "towel" service. But they did. I’d recommend this hotel for the price we paid. And I’d go again. It is about a 3 1/2 star. Go with a happy attitude and not expect a 5 start hotel that would charge you triple the price.
Top of Page November 2007 Nov 2-6 2007 – Would not be my choice for a return trip. Nicest people there were the waiters in the restaurants. Italian restaurant was excellent. Santa Fe Grill was the worst I have ever eaten, buffet breakfast was excellent every day. Problems with trying to change our room to ocean front – told for an additonal $120 we could get ocean front (cash would get you a better choice) shown the room and it was not worth any additional money – some in our group were given ocean view with no additional charge – they were told the same as us pay additonal (cash) we’ll get you ocean front – they refused and were given the ocean front. After 2 trips to the manager and two hours later we got ocean front – ocean front over looking construction of the new pool being put in. Room left a lot to be desired. You could go by the front desk at any given time and their was someone there complaining about their rooms. Water in some rooms, people were given rooms and found out there was already someone in them. Walls thin as paper, you could hear TV’s, people talking. Loud music at night from a club/bar or something next to the resort. We did not find many there who appeared to want to be of service to you, except the waiters in the restaurants. I feel the desk/lobby personnel were the worst. Had we have known about the garden area across the street, we would not have changed to ocean front. The garden area was beautiful, but we were told there was not a swim up bar there, and no restaurants, so we changed to ocean front. Should you ever go there stay in the garden area – it is like a different resort. This was our first resort experience – I was told this place was not the worst – but it certainly wasn’t the best. I prefer cruises – outstanding service, friendly people, every thing clean, people who speak english, and make you feel like they enjoy doing what they do. They always smile and say hello. Not there. I did not feel secure there – too many very dark areas at night – security guards who did not speak or understand english. I don’t know if we will go the resort route again, but should we decide to try it again – it will not be at the Oasis.
Top of Page September 2007 1. Upon our arrival, the front entrance looks well maintained with an international flare of flags waving in the air. Once we step to the concierge desk, during our check –in, a customer was complaining about her accommodations and that put the whammy on us. My girlfriend had paid in advance for a room with a king size bed. And before we left the front desk, we asked if the room had a king size bed and it was confirmed as the concierge checked his computer scene. Once we opened the door, there were two-twin size beds. Now we go back to the front desk for a room change and a supervisor is helping us now while he is dealing with the same irate customer from ten minutes ago. We get another room and it is very large, giant TV just like home. We can hear the conversations of the couples in the adjoining rooms as well as the TV programs. This room on the fourth floor is called the matrimonial suite as per the supervisor. 2. The next morning just a second before 9am, there is a jackhammer on the floor above us. Take a look at the movie clip. The room was on the fourth floor so if you stayed there before, you’ll recognize the view from the balcony. There was no warning about construction taking place and a good thing I didn’t have a hangover, I can’t imagine. We missed the American breakfast since we had to secure another room without construction noise. The front desk was trying to help us and he was sincere. He checked the area of the new room before we accepted it for no construction noise. The third room had an ocean view, king size bed without the jackhammer. 3. Navigating your way to the beach can be unnerving since the resort employees are always asking and or promoting local tours and other activities. Sure they are trying to make money but I live in NYC and I don’t like to get hustled when I’m away from Manhattan, let alone on my vacation. We were removed from this problem when we were staying in the last room on the first floor, which had quick access to the beach. Check out the view, it is very nice. 4. Getting away from the resort to the airport: The bus was late picking us up by 25 minutes. Once the bus took off, the driver circled back to the entrance and a resort employee jumped on the van and asked for the person staying in room 310. They have a problem with a bill and the resort had us all waiting, about 17 people to settle this dispute after that family had checked out of the resort. This jeopardized our check in time along with everyone on the van. No courtesy from the resort or an apology. Thus, we didn’t have any time to purchase any items in the duty free shop. 5. Parts of the resort are romantic. The Mexican food was good. The drinks were good, and at times excellent. The beach was very clean. The weather was great during the second week of September. 2007. The servers and host in the restaurants were good. The tennis courts were in okay condition and the pro there was great to hit with for anytime during the day. Cheap rate compared to NYC but they want US dollars, not Pesos. But the place is very affordable, super cheap for an all-inclusive resort. 6. Fifty percent of the time we past the check in lobby, customers were complaining; whatever. It is good to be back home.
Top of Page July 2007
We traveled to Boca Chica in the Dominican Republic and stayed at the Coral Hamaca Resort on July 19 and just got back. The flight there was pleasant. We had no problems at the airport. The pre arranged transportation to the resort was waiting for us on time and the trip to the resort took about ten minutes. When we arrived the bell service took our luggage and told us to let them know what our room number was so they could take our luggage there at check in. We were given bracelets to enjoy lunch and the facility until check in. When it was time for check in we were told that we couldn’t upgrade our room as we had been promised. We were a large group and had booked 4 rooms. We had asked that 2 of the rooms have king sized beds and that the 4 rooms have either the pool view or the ocean view and be together. We weren’t given none of the above. We wer e told to go back the next day to see if we could be given other rooms. That never happened as the resort was overbooked. Lots of people had been left without a room and had to stay at another hotel. The rooms were very far from everything and with a view of a high wall of barbed wire which got us nervous. The rooms were very shabby looking and the decor was outdated. We had to call down for towels and weren’t brought towels until the evening for two of the rooms. The other two rooms didn’t have towels until the next day. There was a water leak in two of the rooms. One of the girls slipped and bruised her large toe very bad that concluded in a severe sprain which the doctor told the young lady. The doctor’s bill was not included and when the hotel was asked to refund the money they refused saying that it was her fault for not having reported the water leak. Which had been reported immediately way before the incid ent occurred. The customer service was horrible. The food was okay. The beach was lovely. But we’ll never go there again or recommend the place to anyone else. I would not rate this place as a 4 star. It was a 2 star for me. I was very happy and looking forward to the arrival of the bus to take us to the airport for our departure home.
Top of Page June 2007
For those of you who do not know this resort, this resort is actually in Boca Chica. It used to be a Hilton hotel but as of January it has changed over to “Hamaca Coral” and now it’s one of the “Oasis” chain. We flew out of Ottawa on Zoom Airlines, at 9:30 a.m., leaving a half-hour late stopping in to Montreal to pick up more people, left Montreal at 10:45 and on our way. The flight had quite a bit of turbulence but not bad overall. We arrived at La Romana Airport at ~4:00 p.m. local time, spent an hour at the airport and then boarded a bus to take us to the resort, which is 90 minutes away. We finally arrived and were just in time for supper at 6:30 p.m. It was a very long day!
This is a very large resort, with 598 rooms and not a really good choice if you have trouble walking. It is divided into two sections. One section contains the “Garden view” rooms, Kid’s club, with a Kid’s pool, Adult’s pool with a swim-up bar and a Hot tub, Tex-Mex restaurant, Buffet restaurant, Theatre, Mini-Golf and Gym. You have to cross a street to get to the Lobby. This street is open to anybody and everybody so traffic can be heavy. There are “guards” that watch vehicles go by but it was not the “safe” feeling we are used to. Once you are in the Lobby, ther