Advice on hotel/activities in the Dominican Republic?
January 4, 2007 9:57 AM   Subscribe

Posting for a friend here... she is looking for advice on a hotel as part of an "all inclusive" beach resort package around end of February/early March, to Dominican Republic. There is a little

More specifically, it is for a couple in their mid to late twenties who wish to avoid "spring breakers". Looking for a nice hotel with access to other hotels and/or activities ie: entertainment, swimming with dolphins, day trips, etc...

Apologies, MeFites, my GoogleFu is failing me, I did find a number of questions on the topics but they weren't specific enough for my friend's inquiry.
posted by irishkitten to Travel & Transportation around Dominican Republic (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
We stayed at Club Carabela in Punta Cana, and I would not recommend it. It was quite cheap, and we got our money's worth, I suppose, but it was very difficult to get to any activities, not to mention other hotels. It was pretty much in the middle of nowhere, not close to anything fun to do. Very relaxing, to be sure, but that was about it.
posted by MrMoonPie at 11:04 AM on January 4, 2007


My wife and I stayed at the "Secrets" resort in Punta Cana for our honeymoon last May. I've since heard that it is scheduled to close. In any case, I would not recommend it. Some general advice to your friends: If possible, I would recommend that they ask for recommendations from people who know them. I've found that people's vacation experience is very subjective, i.e. a resort that one person may love another may hate, and the true reasons for this difference are often difficult to parse.
posted by metawabbit at 11:15 AM on January 4, 2007


check tripadvisor dot com. They have lots of user reviews of just about every hotel anywhere. If you read enough of them you'll get a good sense of the hotels and the location in general. It's a great site for planning a vacation.
posted by annabkr at 12:00 PM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


check tripadvisor.com. They have lots of user reviews of just about every hotel anywhere. If you read enough of them you'll get a good sense of the hotels and the location in general. It's a great site for planning a vacation.
posted by annabkr at 12:00 PM on January 4, 2007


I second the recommendation for checking the user ratings at tripadvisor.com. They're almost always pretty accurate when there are more than 4-5 reviews. I would not trust any aggregate rating for a hotel with less.

As for finding good deals, I routinely see decent all-inclusive packages offered through cheapcaribbean.com. Be sure to check the ratings at tripadvisor.com though since the star ratings at CC are often higher than they should be.

Always take personal reviews with a grain of salt. Some people expect a lot for very little money and their reviews reflect this. I've stayed at places that are amazing yet routinely see reviews from disgruntled guests who were upset over the most ridiculous little things. It's amazing that people want 5-star treatment and amenities when they're only paying 2-star rates.
posted by camworld at 12:12 PM on January 4, 2007


My friend has noted these responses and would like to say:

"Very much appreciated advice, I will definitely take a look at TripAdvisor. There are so many sites out there, that it's hard to identify whether these sites are legit and/or actually helpful.

Any other comments are much appreciated."


(I suspect she will be signing up for her own account shortly. She is very impressed at the speed and quality of the responses thus far. Thanks MeFi!)
posted by irishkitten at 12:21 PM on January 4, 2007


My wife and I stayed at the Iberostar Bavaro at Punta Cana last May. The staff was more than polite and accomodating. The rooms (4 to each unit) were clean and comfortable. The food was excellent and diverse. The beaches were very clean. We didn't see any teenagers or Spring Breakers (though it was a bit late in the season for that). We did meet a number of very friendly and fun European folks.

There were plenty of opportunities to go on sightseeing trips, scuba diving etc.., but we chose not to do any of that. Some friends that were with us decided to take a 4 wheel ATV tour of some local sugar plantations and they said it was awesome.

We are 30 years old if that matters.
posted by lyam at 12:58 PM on January 4, 2007


A group of us went to Puerto Plata for a wedding last year. We all stayed at the Iberostar Costa Dorada and we all thought it was great. It was fairly new and had good rooms and great food. The beach had a bit of a seaweed problem, but it wasn't really a problem. Easy access to lots of tours - there was even a tour company just across the road the catered very well to our large group. I would recommend it. We were a group ranging from their mid twenties for the bride, groom and friends, to their fifties/sixties for the parents.
posted by Jupiter Jones at 9:54 AM on January 5, 2007


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