Bahia Principe Punta Cana Reviews

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Bahia Principe Punta Cana  

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Awful service and dirty
Posted by: Michelle on Jun 6, 2017
see all reviews

Bahia Principe Punta Cana Reviews
Bahia Principe Punta Cana Pictures and Information
Bahia Principe Punta Cana Punta Cana-Bavaro Dominican Republic

#10 of 80 Hotels in Punta Cana-Bavaro

user rating 3.4

based on 48 review(s)

Bahia Principe Punta Cana Information


Gran Bahía Príncipe Punta Cana is set above a beach of white sand, with 500 m of beach front. It extends over 500,000 m² and has numerous tropical gardens and gorgeous walking paths refreshed with the soft sea breezes and natural surroundings.

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Bahia Principe Punta Cana Reviews

Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 3.4 of 5 48 review(s)
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* The resort is absolutely beautiful and spotlessly clean.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Debbie  on Nov 1, 2004  >  27 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Nov, 2004
529 people found this review helpful

November 6 – 13, 2004

We flew Air Transat out of Toronto. We purchased the Club Transat upgrade, and it is well worth it. The upgrade gives you big seats, with a separate checkin at both airports. Your luggage is given priority, first off the plane. You are allowed twice the baggage allowance as well! Whereas with the cutbacks regular passengers are just given a sandwich, and you have to pay for snacks and anything you want to drink except water, tea and coffee, with Club Transat you have unlimited drinks, a menu with 4 dinner choices, free snacks, free headphones, etc. The flight staff were excellent. I only wish they had better flight times to Punta Cana. We didn’t leave until 4 in the afternoon, making for a late arrival in Punta Cana, and the return flight didn’t leave until 10:30 at night, getting us into Toronto around 2 a.m. (although our return flight did leave half an hour early). A long day, particularly if you can’t get late checkout at your hotel.

We arrived in Punta Cana in a thunderstorm, and had to circle for about 15 minutes before being able to land, then wait for them to bring a shuttle out to the plane to take us to the terminal. When we got to the terminal building there were, as usual, two girls and a photographer waiting to take your picture. We “by-passed” this, as did many others, and went quickly through customs. Our luggage was first off and we were out of the airport in 15 minutes. There are porters waiting to take your baggage as you exit the airport, it is easiest to just let them take it and give them a few dollars. A $24.00 U.S. cab ride and we arrived at Bahia Principe Punta Cana. It is about half an hour from Punta Cana Airport.

Location:
Bahia Principe Punta Cana is located in the northern part of Punta Cana, just north of the Riu Hotels. Along the beach it is about a 10 minute walk to the Riu Hotels. If you walk north on the beach, it is about a 20 minute walk to Grand Paradise and Superclubs Breezes. The “Astron” wreck is offshore, right in front of the hotel.

Bahia Principe Punta Cana opened in June 2004 and is comprised of 708 junior suites. Its sister hotel, Bahia Principe Bavaro, opened on November 6 and has 540 junior suites. It has its own lobby, and is pretty much a mirror image of the Bahia Principe Punta Cana. As you walk down the main pathway from lobby to beach, Bahia Principe Punta Cana is on the right and Bahia Principe Bavaro is on the left. They each have their own buffet restaurant, Japanese restaurant and Gourmet Restaurant, with the same food. The Italian, Grill, Mexican and Seafood Restaurants are shared by both hotels. So if you’re laying awake at night trying to decide which one to stay at, it really doesn’t matter, both offer the same facilities. By the end of our stay there both hotels were fully booked. Due to the layout of the hotel and the many pools and restaurants, it never seemed to be crowded.

A third deluxe hotel, Bahia Principe Premier, with 288 suites, is scheduled to open on December 23, and is located in front of the Bavaro section, and is furthest from the beach.

Check-In:
Checkin is at 3 p.m., checkout is 12 noon If you have an early flight into Punta Cana, you may have to wait a while for your room to be ready. Late checkouts may be available (at an extra charge) if you have a late flight going home. They put your luggage in a locked room off the lobby and you can have access to it during the day. If you have made charges to your room, you can pay in U.S. dollars or pesos. Ask what the exchange rate is…we had charges for some local phonecalls we made, which came to 121 pesos, and when I said I wanted to pay in U.S., he told me it was $7….not. I questioned this and he revised that to $5, which was still a bit high, I think they round up to the nearest dollar.

We were the only ones checking in at 10:30 p.m., so it went fairly quickly once they located our reservation. We were given wristbands, towel cards, a map of the resort and our room key card (only 1). I enquired about the in-room safe and was told to come back in the morning to arrange it. Remote for the TV is in the room. The bellboy took us in a golf cart to our room, with our luggage, which was in Building 5, the Club Golden section. We then realized we had the wrong bracelets on, they hadn’t given us the Club Golden bracelets, which are gold. Pat also discovered he didn’t have his jacket containing his glasses, etc. We called the front desk and were assured that if it was found it would be taken to Guest Services and we could check with them the next morning. We decided to go back and check for it ourselves and a bellboy told us they had found the jacket and it was in guest services, which unfortunately was closed by that time, but we picked it up the next morning. While there we also made a quick trip to the lobby store, just as it was closing, where we bought milk to keep in our room for coffee in the morning, and a big bottle of water, as they had not filled our mini bar prior to our arrival and it only contained two bottles of pop.

The resort is very large, and trams run from one end to the other on a regular basis. We took the tram sometimes, but it was a pleasant walk. It only takes about 15 minutes to walk from the lobby right down to the beach. There are umbrellas in the rooms to use when it’s raining, as the walkways are not covered.

Monday morning we awoke to blue skies and a hot sunny day. Had I known this was going to be the best weather of the week, I would have spent more time in the sun, I was trying not to overdo it on the first day! Unfortunately the weather was not good during our vacation. It rained a lot, both during the day and in the evening, and even when not raining it was very overcast and windy. If we saw the sun peeking through, we’d head for the beach. We still managed to spend quite a bit of time at the beach, though. This weather is very unusual for the Dominican Republic. I see from the forecasts that the weather is better there now.

Photos: http://community.webshots.com/album/223981719qlUyzp

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* The resort is absolutely beautiful and spotlessly clean.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Debbie  on Nov 1, 2004  >  27 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Nov, 2004
529 people found this review helpful

November 6 – 13, 2004

We flew Air Transat out of Toronto. We purchased the Club Transat upgrade, and it is well worth it. The upgrade gives you big seats, with a separate checkin at both airports. Your luggage is given priority, first off the plane. You are allowed twice the baggage allowance as well! Whereas with the cutbacks regular passengers are just given a sandwich, and you have to pay for snacks and anything you want to drink except water, tea and coffee, with Club Transat you have unlimited drinks, a menu with 4 dinner choices, free snacks, free headphones, etc. The flight staff were excellent. I only wish they had better flight times to Punta Cana. We didn’t leave until 4 in the afternoon, making for a late arrival in Punta Cana, and the return flight didn’t leave until 10:30 at night, getting us into Toronto around 2 a.m. (although our return flight did leave half an hour early). A long day, particularly if you can’t get late checkout at your hotel.

We arrived in Punta Cana in a thunderstorm, and had to circle for about 15 minutes before being able to land, then wait for them to bring a shuttle out to the plane to take us to the terminal. When we got to the terminal building there were, as usual, two girls and a photographer waiting to take your picture. We “by-passed” this, as did many others, and went quickly through customs. Our luggage was first off and we were out of the airport in 15 minutes. There are porters waiting to take your baggage as you exit the airport, it is easiest to just let them take it and give them a few dollars. A $24.00 U.S. cab ride and we arrived at Bahia Principe Punta Cana. It is about half an hour from Punta Cana Airport.

Rooms:
This resort is all junior suites, in 2 and 3-storey buildings (no elevators). Due to the layout of the resort, few rooms appeared to have an actual full ocean view. We were in building 5, a 2-storey building, in Room 5208, and if we looked to the right from our balcony we could see the ocean in the distance. It was actually a pretty good location.

All the rooms are the same. The Club Golden upgrade puts you in a section closer to the beach, but the room is the same as the others. Rooms are large and nicely decorated, and have two double or 1 king-size bed, and a seating area with couch, table and chairs. Rooms have a telephone, coffee-maker, clock-radio with alarm, satellite TV (19”) with a lot of English stations (network channel NBC, cartoon channels, CNN, movie channels, sports channels, etc.) and balcony or patio. There is a full bathroom with Jacuzzi tub and shower, hairdryer, and makeup mirror. You also get a few extra goodies like razors and toothbrushes in the basket of amenities, as well as shampoo, bath gel, body lotion, shower cap, etc. There is a mini fridge stocked daily with 2 bottles of water, 2 Pepsi, 2 Seven-up, 1 Diet Pepsi, some apple juice, and 2 Presidente beer. If you want more of something, leave a note and a tip in the fridge, and you’ll get whatever you want. We always asked for extra water, as it is impossible to get bottled water elsewhere in the resort unless you buy it. If you ask for it at a bar, they give it to you in a glass.

In the Club Golden rooms you also have two beach towels, you can use your towel cards to get 2 more if you want them. There are also bathrobes, and an umbrella. There was no iron in the room, but you can request one from housekeeping. I take my own travel iron with me, that way I don’t have to worry about tracking one down if I need it. With the humidity down there, things don’t get that wrinkled anyway – just hang them up for a while. Electricity in the DR is the same as North America, and our plugs fit the outlets just fine. I believe turn-down service at night is another feature of Club Golden, but we only received this on the last night. Perhaps we had the Do Not Disturb sign out when they had come other nights?

Maximum occupancy in the rooms is 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children. Rooms with connecting doors to the next room are available. They also have some handicap rooms available, as well as highchairs and cribs for children. If you’re traveling with small children I would suggest you bring a stroller.

Maid service was very good, our room was always cleaned by noon. Suggest you pack a washcloth or two, we had them most days, but sometimes the maid didn’t leave any. We left a $2 tip each day for the maid. The whole resort is spotless!

The air-conditioning went out on Thursday, and was out for two days. To fix it they had to dig up the area in front of the hotel entrance, and seemed to be working pretty much around the clock to fix the problem, lots of heavy equipment and noise. Because the weather was overcast and not really hot, it wasn’t any particular hardship not having air conditioning, at least in my opinion. I didn’t even really notice it wasn’t working until Thursday night.

Staff here is very friendly, always ready with an “Hola” as they pass you. Key employees all speak excellent English, some of the staff do not speak much English. Remember you are in a Spanish-speaking country and take the time to learn a few phrases in Spanish, they appreciate it.

Bars and Drinks:
Pat is not a drinker, and I drink mostly white wine. I didn’t find their house wine too bad. I tried a few daiquiris which were pretty good, except they were never the same twice. They seem to have some international liquors available in the all-inclusive, others such as Beefeater gin, Canadian Club, Chivas, Black Label, Absolut vodka, Bailey’s, Grand Marnier, etc. are available at an extra cost of between 140 and 300 pesos ($5 to $10) – pretty pricey. Presidente beer is the only beer they have. The a la carte restaurants also have a wine list if you want to purchase a bottle of wine with your meal.

Restaurants
All restaurants (except for the beach snack bar) are air-conditioned and non-smoking. Men must wear long pants in the a la carte restaurants at dinner, they can wear shorts to the buffet.

If you are in Club Golden, you can make 4 reservations at a la carte restaurants during the week. Otherwise you can only make 3 reservations for the week. We chose to make reservations at the Japanese Restaurant, Italian Restaurant, Grill Restaurant, and Gourmet Restaurant. There is also a Mexican restaurant and Seafood restaurant we did not try.

There is a main buffet restaurant in the lobby area, open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
It is open from 7 to 10:30 a.m. for breakfast, 1 – 3:30 p.m. for lunch, and 7 – 10 p.m. for dinner. (would have been nice if it opened a little earlier for lunch and dinner. 7 p.m. is late for some, especially those with small children). A smaller buffet for breakfast and lunch is also served in the Seafood Restaurant near the pool and beach. Food here is the same as what is served in the main buffet restaurant, just on a smaller scale (ie. At breakfast it is all buffet, they do not have a cook there to make eggs, etc. for you). We ate breakfast here a few days, but usually went to the main buffet for the freshly-cooked eggs. The pre-made scrambled and fried eggs tended to be cool in both restaurants, as were the hash-browns. The Seafood restaurant was our favourite place for lunch.

Overall, I thought the buffet food was excellent. There was a large choice and always something I liked, and things I hadn’t previously seen at buffets, like Caesar salad and fajitas. They also had my favourite, fried eggplant. And my favourite desert here, oddly enough, was Jello! And of course, pineapple. Cheesecake was good too.

There is also a snack bar with tables and wait service for drinks located by the pool, where they serve hamburgers, hotdogs, French fries, nachos and cheese, chicken, pizza, etc. This is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

There is a limited room service menu. We didn’t try this. It is available from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Photos: http://community.webshots.com/album/223981719qlUyzp

Was this review helpful?   Yes Thank you for giving us your opinion.

* The resort is absolutely beautiful and spotlessly clean.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Debbie  on Nov 1, 2004  >  27 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Nov, 2004
529 people found this review helpful

November 6 – 13, 2004

We flew Air Transat out of Toronto. We purchased the Club Transat upgrade, and it is well worth it. The upgrade gives you big seats, with a separate checkin at both airports. Your luggage is given priority, first off the plane. You are allowed twice the baggage allowance as well! Whereas with the cutbacks regular passengers are just given a sandwich, and you have to pay for snacks and anything you want to drink except water, tea and coffee, with Club Transat you have unlimited drinks, a menu with 4 dinner choices, free snacks, free headphones, etc. The flight staff were excellent. I only wish they had better flight times to Punta Cana. We didn’t leave until 4 in the afternoon, making for a late arrival in Punta Cana, and the return flight didn’t leave until 10:30 at night, getting us into Toronto around 2 a.m. (although our return flight did leave half an hour early). A long day, particularly if you can’t get late checkout at your hotel.

We arrived in Punta Cana in a thunderstorm, and had to circle for about 15 minutes before being able to land, then wait for them to bring a shuttle out to the plane to take us to the terminal. When we got to the terminal building there were, as usual, two girls and a photographer waiting to take your picture. We “by-passed” this, as did many others, and went quickly through customs. Our luggage was first off and we were out of the airport in 15 minutes. There are porters waiting to take your baggage as you exit the airport, it is easiest to just let them take it and give them a few dollars. A $24.00 U.S. cab ride and we arrived at Bahia Principe Punta Cana. It is about half an hour from Punta Cana Airport.

Photos: http://community.webshots.com/album/223981719qlUyzp

Was this review helpful?   Yes Thank you for giving us your opinion.

* The resort is absolutely beautiful and spotlessly clean.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Debbie  on Nov 1, 2004  >  27 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Nov, 2004
529 people found this review helpful

November 6 – 13, 2004

We flew Air Transat out of Toronto. We purchased the Club Transat upgrade, and it is well worth it. The upgrade gives you big seats, with a separate checkin at both airports. Your luggage is given priority, first off the plane. You are allowed twice the baggage allowance as well! Whereas with the cutbacks regular passengers are just given a sandwich, and you have to pay for snacks and anything you want to drink except water, tea and coffee, with Club Transat you have unlimited drinks, a menu with 4 dinner choices, free snacks, free headphones, etc. The flight staff were excellent. I only wish they had better flight times to Punta Cana. We didn’t leave until 4 in the afternoon, making for a late arrival in Punta Cana, and the return flight didn’t leave until 10:30 at night, getting us into Toronto around 2 a.m. (although our return flight did leave half an hour early). A long day, particularly if you can’t get late checkout at your hotel.

We arrived in Punta Cana in a thunderstorm, and had to circle for about 15 minutes before being able to land, then wait for them to bring a shuttle out to the plane to take us to the terminal. When we got to the terminal building there were, as usual, two girls and a photographer waiting to take your picture. We “by-passed” this, as did many others, and went quickly through customs. Our luggage was first off and we were out of the airport in 15 minutes. There are porters waiting to take your baggage as you exit the airport, it is easiest to just let them take it and give them a few dollars. A $24.00 U.S. cab ride and we arrived at Bahia Principe Punta Cana. It is about half an hour from Punta Cana Airport.

Photos: http://community.webshots.com/album/223981719qlUyzp

Was this review helpful?   Yes Thank you for giving us your opinion.

Excellent time at the Gran Bahia Principe Punta Cana
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Tracey  on Jan 17, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United Kingdom
Visited on: Nov, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
517 people found this review helpful

Your Arrival:
Arrival was a little confused as 2 flights arrived at the same time and check in details for the hotel was done on the coach at the airport. The staff did not have all guests information so it delayed us and we were sat in the airport car park on the bus for approx 1 hour ( a thirsty wait). All was sorted once we got to the resort and although we were booked at the bavaro side - we were allocated a room on the punta cana side. No worries though as they are both the same.

Rooms:
Stayed in room 17306 - block half way between the reception and pool, approx 10 mins walk from the beach. Nice and quiet with no noise at night. The room was always spotless and the maid left us swans etc made with towels. I took a phrase book and left little notes in spanish with a tip if I needed anything else and it was always sorted immediately.

Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet lounge was excellent - Iris and Daniel were the best waiting staff and looked after us very well. As I am gluten intollerant I have experienced problems before through lack of choice (I cannot eat sauces/flour/pasta/bread) however the amount of choice was fantastic - lots of different salad and freshly grilled meat options. There was never a single day when I could not select a very enjoyable meal. As I cannot eat cakes etc - I was very pleased that there was also a selection of jellies and fruit for desert! Also ate at the fish/steak and japanese - all very very good. The pool bar was fantatic and Francisco worked his socks off keeping our glasses topped up! The guys would also come round in the afternoon with a trolley serving freshly made sangria and mamajuana - Yum ! Went to the theatre shows a couple of times which were very cheesy and entertaining but remember that this is not the West End and loosen up a little ! Most evenings we stayed in the lobby bar listening to the pianist, watching the dancers and chilling with a G & T and a pack of cards. Good gin good friends and good conversation! What more do you need ?

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The grounds were spotless - as were the pools and beach. Only ventured to the beach once as enjoyed lounging around the pool. Found everyone to be very friendly and met some very nice canadian people whilst we were there. Hi to you all - Trish, Nikki Jody and your significant others - we really enjoyed the afternoon bar sessions. Also Bill and Mary who shared our last week where Bill and Phil sorted out the worlds problems over a cerveza or two !

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Never strayed off the resort as we have stayed in the DR so many times and just wanted to chill out. Lots of activity going on in the resort - the afternoon aerobics in the pool were a hoot to watch, particularly the young lady getting all the old guys to do aerobics and Mr Universe contest - what a laugh!

Other Comments:
Have read some of the other reviews with I guess what can only be described as amusement !. This is a great resort - BIG - yes ! , but take a risk, have a walk and get some of that flab off ! You need it after the great dinners and deserts. Yes - there may be some mossies - but its hot !! Yes - you may have your towels moved - but there are big signs saying you cant reserve a sunbed !!!! So don't - if you want a bed - lie on it and stay there - or let someone else use it when you aren't. Seriously though - this is a fantastic place - so go,relax and leave the stress behind you, peoplewatch, snooze, read a book and most of all, learn from the people there to serve you, who love life, are proud of their country and work so hard for not a lot of money to make your holiday the best.

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Beautiful resort great weather amazing food.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Cindy  on Mar 6, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
482 people found this review helpful

Left Montreal December 31 2009 9:00 am flight with Can Jet Airlines,4 hours with no leg room,a sandwich only to eat.i will not fly Can Jet again,will fly Air transat or sunwing,and i think i will go for first class.Four hours is too long to not be comfortable.It took only 30 minutes to get to the hotel.
we had reserved the royal golden deluxe,The difference with the royal golden deluxe.they call it the Esmerelda, there is 4 villas,closest to the beach.the safe is included with the royal deluxe.

Your Arrival:
Rooms are just ammazing, we had a king size bed,jaccuzi in the bathroom
could not ask for moore.

Rooms:
we went to book our a la cartes at 8:30 am the next morning,computer was down.
we went to the pool came back 1 hour later,she gave us 5 ala cartes, instead of 4. the only one we couldn't get was the steak house.we went to the japonese
restaurent, meat was overcooked,has they cook the meat first instead of last
Sushi was great, ambiance fantastic.we went to the Bella Italia.we didn't enjoy it.the main buffet at the principe lobby is huge great food can't complain.over all we did like the food.

Restaurants and Bars:
The beach is beautiful white sand.the pools are great cleaned daily.this is a 5 star hotel, it was my fisrt time in the dominican republic,and we will be returning for 2 weeks next time. we have travelled to cuba 4 times puerta vaillarta , jamaica, and puerto rico, this being the best resort so far,so please do not take in consideration all these negative reviews,some people complain about everything.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
We went to the casino we did not do any excursions, we just wanted to relax on the beautiful beach.

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Poor Management Attitude - Disastrous Xmas Eve dinner experience
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 1.00 of 5

Posted by:  Mike from Ottawa  on Jan 10, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2009 | Leisure | Family and Kids
535 people found this review helpful

I booked three families and arranged for another two families to join us for a week of vacation at this resort. Unfortunately, I found the service to be poor, staff had difficulty of communicating properly in English and at times giving wrong information. Despite our initial request, at the time of reservation to be placed close to each other, we were spread around the compound, not able to have breakfast or most dinners together. Worst of all, it was the Xmas Eve dinner. Having booked our dinner table to be together and promised to have this arranged, we were spread all around the restaurant at individual tables. The dinner menu was preselected and handed to us at the restaurant, consisting of: Lobster & prawn cocktail, Langoustine soup, spiral of sea bass Mornay (half cooked), lemon sorbet, stuffed turkey roll, creamy gem squash cheesecake, coffee/tea/liqueurs. No considerations were made for kids, people with sea food allergy or dislike, vegetarians, etc. When aske! d for an alternative to some menu courses, servers promised to bring something else, which never arrived. All the kids in our group went to bed hungry that night. Our reservation was for 9 pm, the turkey was served at 11:15!! Many left the restaurant before the turkey dish arrived. We were still waiting for the French Fries for our kids, so that they would not go to bed with empty stomach, which never arrived. TOTAL disaster. We managed to talk to the night manager, Daniel, after a lot of difficulty. He initially did not want to hear us, at the end apologized and promised to talk to the General Manager and get back to us; we are still waiting, but not holding our breath.

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A Beautiful Paradise!
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Terri B  on Feb 20, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2009 | Leisure | Family and Kids
462 people found this review helpful

This was our first holiday as a family and it was wonderful. We had 2 adults, and 3 boys 17, 17 & 18, and we also went with another family of 6 - 2 adults, 3 girls 18, 17, 13 and one boy 11. The weather was hot during our entire stay. We had a shower once during the day for 10 minutes otherwise it was hot during the day and warm at night. The day we left December 24th we were at the beach until 11:00 am then came back to the room to pack up to go home and then the rain came.

Your Arrival:
We arrived December 17, 2009 at 4:30 pm. The weather was so warm compared to what we left behind in Edmonton, Canada. Going through the Punta Cana airport was fast and organized. The buses waiting to take people to the resorts were all properly labeled. The ride from the airport to the resort was approx. 25 minutes. The driver and tour guide on the bus were very helpful and had everyone's information for their resorts except for us. The reason being is that instead of us staying at the Gran Bahia Punta Cana, they upgraded us to the Esmeralda. We arrived at the main lobby, and then a driver grabbed our luggage and drove us to our resort. The staff at the front desk were very friendly. We were greeted with a cool towel and a drink. They were very accomodating by giving us 2 rooms joined.

Rooms:
The boys room had 2 double beds, and our room had a king size bed. The rooms were grand and fit for a king and queen. The bathroom had a rain shower, a jacuzzi tub and 2 sinks. Everything in the bathroom was in marble, and had a window to the room, which you could easily pull the curtain over it. The rooms were clean, the air conditioning worked, the maid service was wonderful, they cleaned the rooms daily, left fresh towels, fresh pillows and towel art on the beds daily. They even came back in the evening to turn down our beds. The rooms also had a couch that pulled out to a bed, there was a table with 2 chairs and a balconey. We were on the main floor, so I would go out to the balconey to warm up because my husband was enjoying the air conditioning to much. The balconey had a table with 2 chairs. Our rooms were non smoking, but you could go out on the balconey to have a smoke. Sitting on the balconey in the late evening was very warm and calming.

Restaurants and Bars:
The restaurants were very good. We ecspecially liked the Japanese restaurant. The buffets at our resort had a vast variety of food. They had all kinds of meat, fish, soups, pasta, vegetables, fruit, cakes... you name it they had it. The buffets had a different them everyday from canadian, italian, chinese, american to mexican. They still had alot of your basic foods as well. The buffets breakfasts, lunches and suppers were just a good if not better than some of the A La Cartes.We tried other buffets at the resorts and they were the same as ours, very good. The bars whether at the main lobby, or the lobby at our resort, or the swim up bars. The people there work very hard to please us, and we had a wonderful time. Manwell, and Abraham are the best bartenders at the swim up bar, and the bar at Esmeralda. We had a great time and a lot of laughs with them.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach was gorgeous, there was plenty of chairs, as well as the sun huts. The kids played beach volleyball everyday. They had games at the beach, they had a bar at the beach, and they also had security which you didn't see unless something went wrong, then they were there immediately. The sand is so soft and white. The overall smell of the outdoors had a floral hint to it. The grounds at the resort were immaculate. There was always someone working on the grounds either doing the plants, painting the borders, cleaning up dead leaves, sweeping the walkways, or cleaning the tables at the pools.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
There was always something going on day or night. During the day there was plenty happening at the beach, the pools had activities, there was snorkling lessons, they had excursions to go on. There was a market on the resort you could do some shopping, they had a mini golf course, a spa, the kids even went and played basketball at the courts, but only lasted 15 minutes, it was to hot for them to play. Again the weather was great!! The evening had shows at the main theater like 80's show, The lion King and Michael Jackson look a like. The shows were very entertaining. The main lobby had a big meeting place you could sit and visit and have a drink. It was a nice place to meet other people.

Other Comments:
I don't have one bad thing to say about this resort, they spent alot of time trying to please everyone that stayed there, and they even went out of there way to make your stay there enjoyable. The people there are friendly, and funny. English isn't a language barrier there, because they try so hard to please everyone. I would definitely return to this hotel, and I would 100% recommend the Gran Bahia Principe to anyone and everyone. I can hardly wait to go back there again!!!

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Very Pleased With Trip...First time ever did a trip like this
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Barbara  on Jan 11, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
564 people found this review helpful

We read alot of reviews from this website some good and some bad. So we went ahead and did discover our own reviews.Its a beautiful place. Not alot of English spoken and the trolley drivers dont know the resort..like where the restaurants are you have to study the map. Which is your job !!!Kinda like a maze..lol

Your Arrival:
We arrived at 1am with Airplane delays. At first we got there we wernt direct to the VIP. Thus waiting in the general line for 20mins before we were told different. Then when directed to VIP we went in and got a room package. With our allecartes already assigned. And our purple bracklets disappointed we got no other direction. That was a lil sad as we didnt know what trolley to get or where even to go.but we found our room and was in bed by 230am

Rooms:
We asked for 2 double beds. But oh well we gotaking and a single it still worked so no biggy. One thing you need toknow is the dominican peopleare very smart as when u get a room you get two cards one for the door and the second one there is a slot inside the room for the other one and u put it in there and it works the air conditioning and lights (trick bring a walmart gift card and it works too and allows the air to continue to run when ur not there)as your card gives the power to the room. The bathrooms are all tile and real nice the tube is a jacuzzi....its nice blow dryer and huge mirror and a mini mirror...they supply lots of shampoo/conditioners/combs/sewing kit/combs

Restaurants and Bars:
The main buffet is great...the snackbars are fabulous....the alle carts well we only did the bbq one as we arent ones to try new things so the paris/japenese/meditrainin were the others and we didnt go..the main buffet kept us for the week. So the food islike chicken turkey ham roast beef lamb pig carved as you ask.....there is tons to eat burgers fries pizza fried tomatoes veggies omelettes/pasta bar and breads and steak and pork chops baked /boiled potatoes....you will not go hungry the snackbar is a mini buffet plus allthe sandwich meats and cheese.If your nota vinigertte dressing person forsalads bring ur own and also if u like HP sause bring it as they have none.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach/ Pool beautiful clean and tested daily...the pool checkers walkaround in white jackets like they are doctors..lolThe grounds are WELL maintained and there are tons of people cleaning everything railings..floors...balcony..its trulycrazy howmuch cleaning goes on here and you can smoke anywhere as well.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Theone activity wedid was the mega truck and its 95.USA and it was wellwoth it. Our tour guide was Alex and hes so funny ..We visited the children school..sugar cane fields..seen the country side..went to a ranch horse backride and had a lunch..seen how cigars are made seen how people live there also seen how they jar and make coffee..coca..vanilla..met afamily toured their house.Also if you take this tour bring school supplies for the school and the soaps from the hotel. But most of allcome with a strong heart as their are children there that beg...and its not allowed to give them anything for their own safety you have to give the items to the school.

Other Comments:
We have never done a holiday like this ...i am ready to do another trip and see what is all out there....its like heaven with no responsibilities.....iwould return in a heart beat......planning one for next February with my kids. They look after every detail...like a sticker on the toilet paper...the maids if you tip will be very good to you too

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Awesome resort and beach.
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 5.00 of 5

Posted by:  Karla Burkholder  on Jan 11, 2010  >  2 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
570 people found this review helpful

This is our third trip to the Dominican Republic. It is a beautiful country. The people at the resorts work long, hard hours. They are friendly and always willing to help you. The Bavaro beach area is beautiful. We highly recommend this area of the Dominican.

Your Arrival:
Arrived on time flying in from Detroit, Michigan through Apple Vacations. Apple rep. there to greet us upon arrival and direct us to the bus that would take us to our resort.

Rooms:
Room was nice with a king size bed, jacuzzi tub/shower. Large closet for clothes. They provided you with robes and an umbrella to use during your stay. Robes are available for purchase if you choose. Maid kept room clean and tidy. Refrigerator was kept well stocked with beverages. Coffee maker in room with coffee and tea available. Plenty of bottled water available.

Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet restaurants were excellent. Always a lot to choose from. The buffet restaurant in the Principe Premier area was smaller and not as crowded as the one in the Principe Bavaro area. Ala carte restaurants: we ate at the French restaurant, the Garden Grill and the Japanese. All were excellent. Did not use the bar areas.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach is awesome, beautiful white sand and you can walk for miles. Pools were nice, kept clean, landscaping was beautiful and well taken care of. Beach got crowded by 11:00 a.m. and cleared out some by 5:00 p.m. Best time for walking is early morning or late afternoon.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Did not do any optional activities.

Other Comments:
The only downfall to the trip was upon returning to the airport to fly back to Detroit, the lines were long and slow moving. We arrived 2 hours before the flight was to leave. It took us two hours to get checked in and go through security. Flight was late leaving. Make sure you get to the airport at least 2-3 hours before your flight takes off.

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Some good points, some not so good
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Wilma  on Jan 25, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
573 people found this review helpful

This was our second trip to Punta Cana, but first to this resort. We stayed at Gran Bahia Principe Bavaro - Club Diamond Section. This resort is massive. It has the following sections: Punta Cana, Ambar (Adults Only), Bavaro, Premier, Club Diamond and Royal Golden. It was full. One of the staff told us they had 4500+ guests. The trolley system works great. You never have to wait more than a few minutes for a trolley.

Your Arrival:
We arrived on 27 December in the evening. It took us a while to find the Club Diamond check-in location. Once we found the right location, check-in was relatively smooth, except for the fact they had booked two rooms for us instead of one. We explained that there were only two of us, thus only one room required. We had requested an oceanview room, close to the beach, but were told none were available. We were given a room in Building 27 and only had a short walk to the beach. We were in our room in approximately 45 minutes.

Rooms:
We had a junior suite on the second floor with a balcony, and king bed as we had requested. The room had a nice sitting area, plus a table and chairs. coffee maker, mini bar and safe (had to pay for safe). We waited 3 days to get a remote for the TV. There were no ironing boards or irons in the rooms. You had to call Guest Services to request one when you needed it. Considering the length of time it took to get a TV remote, I didn't bother asking for an iron. We did not have an umbrella in the room either. When we asked for one, we were told to look in the room. I was quite sure there was none, but looked anyhow. I then called to request one and was told that since it was raining, everyone wanted an umbrella and they didn't have any!! The bed sloped to one side, making it feel like you were going to fall out of bed. The lighting in the room was terrible, very dim, difficult to see what was in the closet or the safe. For anyone going to this resort, take a flashlight. One lamp had a broken socket and one of the lights in the bathroom didn't work. We reported it and they sent a "technician". The fellow managed to fix the broken lamp, seemed quite perplexed why the light in the bathroom didn't work (we thought it needed a new bulb). He left without fixing the bathroom light. Communication with him was extremely difficult. We had very small white bugs or spiders on the night stand and floor. We also found a bug in the bed. I showed it to the resort doctor and she thought it was a baby cockroach. I had a very bad reaction to insect bites and had to seek medical treatment at the resort medical office. The doctor felt that I had been bitten by mosquitos. I saw my family doctor the day I arrived back in Canada as I had even more bites than when I saw the resort doctor. He said that some of the bites could have been caused by sand fleas and/or mosquitos, BUT felt the other bites were caused by bed bugs. Both my husband and I were bitten all over our backs, legs, and arms, plus I had bites on my face. We didn't asked to change rooms as we could have encountered the same problems elsewhere. Plus one of the Club Diamond staff said they were full and had to send some guests to other hotels for a few days until space became available. Our maid, Belkis, was quite good. She would leave extra water for us and extra pop and always left flowers and towel art.

Restaurants and Bars:
Club Diamond had pre-booked 4 a la cartes for us, which we could have changed but decided not to. For the most part, the a la cartes were quite good. The Garden Grill (Steak House) was definitely our favourite. The steak was wonderful. The Tex-Mex was our least favourite, but still okay. Most of the a la cartes had an appetizer, soup, salad and dessert buffet as well as the menu selections. One problem with the buffets was that the food which was supposed to be hot, was for the most part lukewarm or cold. The same applied to breakfast items. If you wanted hot food, it was best to order an omelette or fried eggs. Diamond Club had its own restaurant for breakfast and lunch so we ate there most days. The staff were friendly and the food was good. The first night we went to the Japanese it was a wonderful experience and very enjoyable. The second time was something else indeed. They sat us with 10 other people who were already on their 3rd or 4th course, the food was all cooked and they were serving the rice. They did not offer us a drink nor did they offer to serve us the sushi and appetizer until my husband complained. Then they put 2 plates in front of us, followed closely by the soup. In the meantime, the cook is serving our rice and asking what meat we wanted. It was a very uncomfortable situation both for us and the other people at the table. We didn't want to cause a scene at the table as that would have ruined the meal for the others. We tried to complain on leaving the restaurant; however the hostess either did not understand or pretended not to. We ate at the main buffet only a few times.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach was lovely as usual; however, it waas jam packed with beach loungers and people. What a shock that was the first day. It was like a maze trying to find an open path to the water, bar, or wherever you wanted to go. If you moved your lounger the least bit, someone else would move their lounger under your palapa. Often times, when we were laying under our palapa, one or two other people would be laying right behind our heads. They would move their loungers so close to yours - sometimes only a couple of inches separating you from a total stranger. The Bahia Principe Ambar (Adults Section) appeared to have their own section of beach and was not nearly so crowded. Club Diamond had its own pool, which we thoroughly enjoyed. The grounds were very well looked after. It is a beautiful resort.
We had the pleasure of meeting Saline, who cleaned the main lobby area and the washrooms. She was a joy to talk to, always had a smile and such a positive attitude. You always knew when Saline was working as the washrooms were sparkling. We also had the pleasure of meeting Dorotheo, who cleaned the sidewalks in a couple of areas. What a wonderful gentleman - such a big beautiful smile and so pleasant to chat with. Both Saline and Dorotheo made us feel so welcome. It was obvious they both loved their jobs and enjoyed doing the best job possible.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Since this was our third time to the DR (second to Punta Cana). we didn't participate in any of the tours.

Other Comments:
Communication was a problem at times, even with the Club Diamond staff. At times, you would stand in line only to be told they couldn't help us that we would have to go to the Main Reception desk. We asked at Club Diamond about cashing travellers cheques. The person told us we should see our Sunquest rep as they are the ones who cash the travellers cheques. We thought that rather odd, but approached the rep. He was amazed that we were told to see him. He then told us where to find the currency exchange.
On the up side, the weather was fantastic for the most part.
On a rather humorous note, my husband wanted to purchase some throat lozenges at a small store on the resort. When he asked the sales clerk how much the box of lozenges cost, she asked how many he wanted. She opened the box and sold him 5 lozenges for $5.00 US!!!

Air Transat:
Our booking was through Sunquest Holidays, but we flew Air Transat. We upgraded to Option Plus on our outbound flight and to Club Class on the return. It was worth the extra money to get priority check-in, particularly in Punta Cana. Our luggage with the first pieces off the plane in Punta Cana. The food and service in Club Class was wonderful!!!

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Never Again
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 2.00 of 5

Posted by:  Craig  on Mar 8, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
489 people found this review helpful

Let me start off with saying,we are AMERICANS, we are a average couple,50ish in age,have traveled to Mexico 13 times, 3 cruises, and twice to the Dominican Repulic. So we have seen and experienced quite a large field of differences. Our trips have always been to all inclusive resorts.
THIS WAS AT THE " GRAN BAHIA PRINICPE PUNTA CANA BAVARO "

Your Arrival:
When we arrived in the Dominican we were greeted by warm air and smiles, we did not have transfers arranged, so when a baggage guy came up to us and started talking, we asked where to catch a Taxi, with smiles he brought us to where the taxis are, and thanked us, we tipped him a couple of bucks and he was happy. ABSOULTELY NO PROBLEM with finding a Taxi, the cost to our resort was $40 which we found out was the going rate and had no problem paying it, tipped him a $5. Takes about 30 minutes to get there.
Checking into our resort was some what of a hassle, because the really do not speak english very well at all, if any !!! It took us about 20 minutes to finally get a room. Some of the staff are alittle better at thier jobs then others, just like any where. During this transaction I asked which way the beach was and he pointed to his left, then I asked him which way our room was and he pointed to his right, no way was he going to move us closer, but he did let us know there was a pool right outside our building. The POOL was a small shallow piece of cement with 3 COLD whirl pools in it. After we took a trolley to our building ( building 51 ) we started to get a feel for how FOOLISH LARGE this resort is.

Rooms:
We were on the 3rd floor, overlooking the pool (LOL), Just about as far from the OCEAN AS POSSIBLE! King size bed, which was extremely firm, Bathroom where very nice with a exceptional shower, just like anywhere you had to rent a Key to Activate the safe, well worth the $26. My wife and I had been bit in the night by bugs, 2 nites in a row, so on the 3rd day, we stripped the pillow cases, sheets, and comforter off and threw them out side our door so the chambermaid would totally understand, she did not speak any english what so ever. Rooms were pretty good size, and air conditioner worked well, as well as the ceiling fan. Very comfortable temp. Plenty of closet space, iron, blow dryer, and your frig was stocked every day.

Restaurants and Bars:
BOOZE, weak, very weak, and your FROZED DRICKS, where not FROZEN, they came out of a chilled slushy machine. This was the only place we have seen that there was a charge for stronger drinks, good scotch, brandy, ETC. OK OK, NOW ABOUT THE FOOD. WHERE SHOULD I START!! COLD, to LUKE warm, now when I say this, please don't say I'm being to picky, it was EXACTLY THAT. Every meal, morning noon and night, and the selection of food was diffenetly catering to the people from germany,Italy,Spain,France, not the Americans, you have a better Quality of food you enjoy in your local buffets. It got so bad, we started making grinders to take back to our room, because of the selection of american food. Once again they the staff did not speak english. They did not even know what a cup of ice was.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
One of the nicest beaches we have seen. Clean, Sandy, no Rocks, very very comfortable water temp. Some topless, no major issue, alot of chair saving and then never showing up. Same with the little covered Cabanas. LOL, it got so bad with the saving thing, that if I had not seen anyone show about to the covered cabanas far a few hours, I would throw the towels and books,hats off on to a nearby chair so other peole were able to enjoy them.
Pools down at the beach area where kept up nicely, and very clean. The beer at the snack bars in the beach area were the coldest, food still was cold to luke warm, but the beer was cold!

Other Comments:
Absolutely not American friendly, ( American food,speaking english or lack there of)
We had to take a trolley from our room, to get to the lobby, then take a different trolly to the beach that was about 1/2 mile away from the lobby. To time consuming and inconvient. Did not enjoy it.
To large of a resort, (3500 people and it was booked full)
Staff - did not speak english, and the evening shows were terrible, now we were not expecting las vegas by a long shot, but these people never practiced and it showed, could not even keep in step with ANY and I measn ANY dance routine. Sound system was loud and very blurry, could not uderstand what they were saying, even the few very very broken english words they tried. WE WILL NEVER GO BACK, I HOPE SOME OF YOU READ THIS AND CHANGE YOUR PLANS, YOU WILL BE DISSAPOINTED IF YOU GO. YES THE WATER IS NICE, YES THE WEATHER IS NICE, YES ITS IT JUST PLAIN NICE TO GET AWAY WITH YOUR SPOUCE, HOWEVER YOU WILL NOT LIKE THIS RESORT.
TheY work off of QUANITY, NOT QUALITY !!

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Two reasons for a Four Star rating
Bahia Principe Punta Cana

User Rating:  Bahia Principe Punta Cana Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Kayne  on Feb 5, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
496 people found this review helpful

Recently back from the Bahia and will keep this short.

Your Arrival:
Arrival was a pleasant surprise, rather than stand in line at the front desk we were escorted to take a seat and brought a cold drink. The receptionist came to us to check us in. Before our departure we had written the resort telling them that we were repeat guests, we asked for any available upgrades but didn't know what we would get. Well, at first it didn't seem like we would be getting anything but then a second lady from the front desk came over, confirmed who we were and then proceeded to cut off our bracelets and replace them with the VIP ones! Wow, we were spoiled every where we went. Not that manners and some small tips hurt but still amazing.

Rooms:
The room was huge and gorgeous. The only issue I had was that the shower would keep cutting out almost as if there wasn't enough water pressure to keep it flowing. We were on the third floor though. Oh yeah, one morning while enjoying my coffee while waiting for my sister to get ready to go, a man came around the corner from the next balcony onto ours to clean cobwebs from the ceiling! Good thing I had on the bathrobe, LOL!! He took me quite by surprise! Dangerous too, the rooms must have 10ft ceilings.

Restaurants and Bars:
All excellent. Had one piece of fish that was undercooked (out of 30 so that's not bad.) Garden Grill had the best steak I've had in a long time, yummy.
Here comes bad point number one: the liquor was all watered down! I'm not that big a drinker but it still really bothered me, a lot. Tried ordering doubles but even that didn't cut it.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Spectacular everywhere.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Did one catamaran tour, basically a snorkel booze cruise. Had a blast. Not the best snorkelling I've done, there was another boat out at the same time and it was way too crowded to try and see any fish. When I went away from the group out on my own, I got called back closer. Oh well, their rum wasn't watered down.

Other Comments:
Here comes bad point number two: the resort was too big. Didn't like meeting people and then not seeing them again for the entire week we were there. Beach too crowded.
Amazing staff, polite and courteous.
Wouldn't go back because of the liquor or size.

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