My boyfriend and I stayed at Blue Bay from March 31st to april 7th. I had very high expectations from reading people's reviews on here, seeing as it was ranked number 5 in Puerto Plata resorts. My expectations were not fully met but overall I did have a good time. I'm going to break my review down in to sections to make it easier to read.
The quick trip from the airport is ideal. The last thing you want to do after a long flight is get onto a cramped bus and travel for a long time. It was a pretty quick 20 minute ride. Esthetically the hotel itself is beautiful. High cielings, breezy white linens, tourquoise accents, beautiful large hanging lights along with incredibly lush plantlife complete with open concept walls for the lobby and buffet really make you feel like you've just arrived in paradise.
Our room was located by the quite pool in the 7000's. We were 7116 right around the corner from the place where you exchange towels by the path to the beach. We emailed in advance to ask for a room with a king size bed, on the ground floor, by the quiet pool and we got exactly what we wanted. The room itself is basic but nice. But seeing as you spend very little time in your room, all I really care about is: is the room clean, is the bed comfy. And the answer to both those questions was yes! People have complained the bed was too stiff and the pillows too floppy and lumpy, but I slept like a baby! I guess if you like mattresses that sink and sag you won't be happy, but I was more than comfortable. We tipped our maid everyday, and she treated us well. I went to the dollarstore before I left and bought some lotions and nailpolish so that I had enough for each day. We always had fresh towels, and full water, and she even brought us more beer when we drank them. She also made us little swans and left us flowers.
I really enjoyed the buffet. There were always tons of different options and I got to try some new thinks I'd never had before like the various plantane dishes they had, which are awesome! So delish! Try them. The fruit there is delicious, very fresh and I believe all organic. The bananas are the best I have ever had. The skins look bruised but the insides are pristine. Also one night the had a full cooked turkey and me and my boyfriend loved it! Most tender turkey we've ever had.
The alacartes were kind of a meh. They were nice because I enjoy getting dressed up, and its a nice change of scenery. You get to be somewhere quieter with less people so its much more intimate. However the food isn't that much better than the buffet. Of the 3 I'd say El pascador (the seafood) was our least favourite. We ordered the mahi mahi which was fine, the sauce was really good, but we decided we didn't really like that type of fish. But hey if you like mahi mahi you might love it! We also paid extra (32$ american) for the Lobster which was huge!! Two full large lobsters! It was really good, not as good as expected(its different lobster than the kind we're used to in Canada) but still quite enjoyable. A lot of people complained about the beef alacarte (the El dorado) but I really liked it. Out in the open air, and not the best steak we've ever had, but I've also had a lot worse here in Canada. The asian restaurant was probably our favourite, best decor and yummy food. We were really dissapointed not see any sushi on the menu!! But they did bring us two sushi tasters before our appertizers. We shared the thai salad (very good) and the spring rolls, and then I had chicken and pork satay in peanut sauce with veggie fried rice and my boyfriend had beef stirfry in black bean sauce-both were very good.
We only went to two shows both were silly competitions that had everyone laughing hysterically. The 2nd one we were both a part of and even though we didn't win we got a bottle of rum.
The walk down to the beach is lovely. Pretty bridge with white curtains at the beginning and end. There are always adorable little brown or green lizards around. The first part is over a bog that sort of smells, but hey, its nature guys! Didn't bother me. You walk a few more steps and there's a big pond an it no longer smells. The staff on the beach were always very helpful with getting you chairs. We never had a problem. You can't always get the exact spot you want, like shade under the grass canopy, but you will always get chairs, and they will take them wherever you want. They also have a server walking around who will bring drinks. The beach sellers can get a little annoying but a simple smile and no will suffice. We bought some stuff though, and wished we'd bargained more. The water itself is murky but very warm. If you walk down the beach to the left it gets clearer but the beach gets a bit dirtier. They did a good job of maintining the beach infront of the resort.
The drinks were a BIG dissapointment. Some tasted great but it was clear that even though it looked like they put in lots of alcohol, they really didn't. The alcohol had to be watered down, cause even in a vodka cran you don't taste it at all. Stick to wine and beer there if you want to get drunk. The wine isn't great, but I still drank it, and the beer Presidente was quite good.
We did two excursions: 27 waterfalls and paradise Island. We were originally going to book through the hotel rep but then we found Nelson (who we'd heard great things about on here) and he gave us lower rates so we booked with him. If you're going to do excursions go through Nelson! He's a great guy, and good deals!
The waterfall excursion was incredible! Best thing we've ever done!! First you get a tour of the land, and then this place where they make coffee and chocolate and cigars. We got to try the coffee and chocolate and hot chocolate! Mmmm! Then We did the first 7 waterfalls and it was incredible! A must do!
Paradise Island was beautiful but if you've gone snorkeling before, I'd say stay away. But since it was our first snorkeling experience it was pretty darn cool! One of the guide took our camera for us and got us some really great photos. The water was so incredibly clear there! Gorgeous! But its a long day and the drive back was dismal. Very long! And we were all hot, tired, dirty, covered in sand and salt. So it sort of put a damper on things. But I don't regret it.
We also did the perto plata city tour with a taxi and this guy Miguel who lurks by the front of the hotel. DO NOT DO THIS! It was a waste! He just took us to his friends shops in hopes we'd buy stuff! We felt pressured and uncomfortable the whole time. The only cool part was the fort which was neat to see but still, could've gone with out. If you do want to see the fort just take a taxi straight there and no where else.
Very warm and clean. You don't get bugged by sellers there. And the hotel is kept very clean except when it came to cleaning up spills or empty cuPs around the pool. Not a huge complaint but still.
Overall it was a great resort for our first time and I really enjoyed it and definitely don't regret going! But for our next vacation we will definitely be trying somewhere else. New country, new resort!
One complaint: we asked severall times at reception if they could make change for us and it was a big hassle.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC