I vacationed at Punta Cana Princess with my boyfriend and parents for 4 nights at the end of March/beginning of April. I am a religious review reader on trip advisor, especially of places outside of the USA. I will try to tell you as much as I can about the resort. I want to give a disclaimer that I expect to get what I pay for and I understand that you can’t always make everyone happy.
ARRIVAL: Arrival at the Punta Cana Airport was insane. There must have been 7 or 8 planes that arrived at one time. You must buy a $10 visitors card to get into the country (this is genius; I think the USA should do this to help solve our country’s debt problem). The line for this was very long and we stood outside of the airport in the sun for over an hour. If there is any way for you to purchase this visitor card online before you arrive, it would save you a lot of time. It is literally just a paper receipt. I did have a problem where my transportation was not arranged, but I blame this entirely on Travelocity. The ride to the resort is about 20 to 25 minutes.
ROOM: We booked the All Inclusive Platinum Suite. We had some problems at check in. Since I am an avid reader on trip advisor, I saw that many guests recommended building 4 and 5 (close to the beach). That being said, I emailed Hector, the guest services manager, and requested this in December. I requested a two rooms in building 4 or 5 on the top floor, two king beds. He emailed me back and said they did not have 2012 reservations yet and to email back 3 weeks prior to stay. I emailed him again 3 times leading up to our trip and never received a response. My confirmation with Travelocity had rooms reserved. When we arrived at the resort, they had us in 1 room. We told them no, it’s two. They put my parents in another room, but said it was not cleaned yet, so we went to my boyfriend and I’s room and it had two double beds. When we went back to say, no, a king sized bed, they kind of hemmed and hawed around it, saying the resort was at max capacity (uh, yeah right), but after a little more persistence, we were put in another room with a king bed. That being said, we stayed in building 1, rooms 1110 and 1209. They were completely fine and acceptable. They kind of have a musty smell, so I suggest bringing some air freshener. There are two beach towels in the closet (they are blue). Our maid did an excellent job and brought us extra pillows and bath towels. I tipped her $5 a day. Really you are only in the room to sleep and shower anyway. This resort is small and everything is close together. You get a free bottle of rum as well!
POOL: Did not use the pool. Looked nice but would rather be on the beach.
BEACH: As you may have read in previous reviews, the “towel game” is in full swing here. The resort is largely European, followed by Canadians, and then Americans. If you do not go out to the beach by 8am to put your towel out, you are going to be hard pressed to find a hut with shade. I didn’t see this happening at the pool; it always looked as if there was plenty of space at the pool, but who comes to the Caribbean to go to a pool? I don’t mind the “towel game” because I believe that if you want a good spot you must wake up early to get a good spot. You can’t expect to roll out of bed at 10am and get a good chair. Bavaro Beach is absolutely gorgeous. The water is beautiful and just a little chilly when the sun goes in. Punta Cana Princess does a really good job of keeping the seaweed under control every night. I can’t even call it seaweed; it is more like a hard grass. We walked the beach at length and saw that other resorts didn’t try to do this. You will not be disappointed in this beach! One thing that I missed from a previous visit to Jamaica was that the lounge chair pads double as water floats; this would be a great touch at this resort. Try the drink called Chunky Monkey!
FOOD: The food is some of the best I have had at an all-inclusive resort. We went to the fondue restaurant, which is a really cool experience, but takes some time. We also went to the steakhouse, which was very good. Sadly, my boyfriend was never quiet full so we always ended up at the buffet for “second dinner”. The buffet is really amazing and the food was really great there as well. They make some fresh food at the buffet which is great. Desserts are amazing! The beachside restaurant is really good as well. Love that french-fries and cheese every day and chocolate ice cream! The food is very good at this resort and not disappointing at all. Also, they say they have 24 hour room service, but there is a limited menu. Let me just tell you that the staff in these restaurants HUSSLE; they have excellent service. One down side, they say they have one restaurant that is open 24/7 (beachside), however when we arrived at 4:30pmish (restaurants don’t open until 6:30pm for dinner) we were starving after traveling, standing in the sun, transportation problems, and room problem and there was NO FOOD at the beach restaurant. Very disappointing when you just arriving and having all those problems, hopefully just timing issue because it was fine at lunch? Some ala carte restaurants are not always open, but there is no schedule as to what is open and what isn’t, so you never know? I have been accustomed to receiving the next day’s activity/restaurant schedule with turn down service. Also, all ala carte restaurants have a dress code or you will be turned away.
SPA: My mother and I both had massages at the spa and they were amazing. Full body massage was $65 for 55mins. Not bad at all for the price. It was an excellent and relaxing experience. I love going on vacations and getting massages.
ENTERTAINMENT: We usually went to the nightly shows. My parents stayed out later than us! The staff is amazing. Jose and his team do a great job of entertaining, making you feel welcomed, and getting people involved. They work very hard as well and have very long days. Also, they can dance like professionals! They have some serious rhythm!
I would say this concludes my review, besides a few other points. The grounds are beautiful here and very well maintained. The maintenance crew works tirelessly to ensure the property is beautiful! There aren’t many bugs at this resort either. There are a lot of smokers at this resort. I guess because I come from a state that largely prohibits public smoking, I didn’t realize how many people still smoked in the world. I think there should be some kind of restriction on this at the resort. I was sitting in the lobby trying to watch a show and the guy next to me was blowing so much smoke on me and then a few other people behind me were chain smoking and several people had to get up and move because of this. People also tend to use the beach as their ash tray which is disgusting and unnecessary. I also saw a couple women go topless on the beach, not something I was used to in the USA. Also, they have a few other Princess Properties. My boyfriend and I walked down to one and I used the bathroom, but the bartender refused me a drink and told me I could have only a coke. I don’t know how this exactly works when they brag “stay at one, play at three” especially when I have a bracelet on from the 18+ resort. The staff works hard at Punta Cana Princess and a few dollars here and there can go a long way to show your appreciation. They are very friendly and warm hearted people. Also, I suggest setting up a professional photo session. They take amazing pictures!
I hope this was helpful and please message me if you have a question because I would be happy to help. : D
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Punta Cana Princess All Suites Resort & Spa in an Adults Resort (18 years old and over) where the fascination of an unforgettable holiday is readily available to our clients. Caribbean style and art of living combine in each of the corners and rooms of this pleasant, high-category holiday resort in Bavaro Beach. Five-Star All Inclusive Hotel, quiet and relaxing, on a heavenly beach; that offers all the services and facilities of our sister hotels Caribe Club and Tropical Princess.The charm of the 263 beautiful Platinum Suites, the seduction of the 7 Honeymoon Suites equipped with a thousand and one details and including a full range of services are completed with the careful and selected menu of our 5 restaurants (main buffet, Italian, Tex-Mex, Mediterranean and Swiss), and a functional snack. Wedding packages available. A full range of daytime leisure activities, extensive gym and spa area, a beautiful bright environment, with a large number of evening activities, next to the famous Princess Tower Casino (located at Bávaro Princess Hotel), and Areito Disco (one of the best in Punta Cana); that add the pleasure of some days of rest and an unforgettable holiday at the famous Bavaro Beach. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Punta Cana Princess Resort
- Princess Punta Cana
- Bavaro Princess All Suites Resort Punta Cana
- Bavaro Princess All Suites Resort Spa & Casino
- Punta Cana Princess Hotel