Paradisus Punta Cana Info Requested

Old Apr 26th, 2006, 11:36 AM
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Paradisus Punta Cana Info Requested

My husband and I have booked our second trip to Paradisus Punta Cana. Our last trip was in 2002, and there was no such thing as Royal Service. We stayed in Building 10 and loved it. This time around, we did not book Royal Service (I didn't even know about it), and I would appreciate any advice on room locations.

In 2002, the management was very kind in affording us the room location that we requested; however, Building 10 is now for Royal Service guests. I'm not so sure we will be given a room in the building that we request, but it will be worth a try.

Any assistance regarding good room locations would be greatly appreciated.
BTW, I frequent Debbie's Dominican Republic website, and I haven't gotten the info I need there.
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Old Apr 28th, 2006, 07:01 AM
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We were there 2004 & 2005, here is my trip report.
Paradisus Punta Cana April 2004

Punta Cana airport: Best way it describe itÖSLOW. Customs was very fast but after that, expect to wait. They have one luggage turnstile per plane that is about the size of my closet. Plan to be crowded in by the other 300 persons on your flight also looking for luggage. And on the way home, bring bottled water and comfortable shoes. Our wait in line for checking in was over 1 Ĺ hours.
* Donít forget youíll need $20 US per person for departure tax.
* We took a cab from the airport to the resort instead of waiting for the resort bus. The cab was only $22 US plus tip and we got there in about 25 minutes. Taking the bus you have to wait for all the other persons to get their luggage, get signed in and then you have to make to rounds to all the resorts for drop off, not just yours.

Resort check in: We chose the Royal Service and I would highly recommend it to anyone. Upon arrival to the resort we were taken to the Royal Service offices for check in. Yisel took care of all our paperwork pleasantly and efficiently and in no time we were off to our bungalow #30, and it was only 11:30 am. Tons of beach time ahead of us.

Bungalows: These are 16 unit buildings, 8 to a side, 4 up & 4 down. Get 2nd floor if possible; more private and has vaulted ceilings. Also try and get the corner rooms. Their balconies wrap around the side of the buildings so you actually get two views. The rooms have a large bathroom with a separate room for the toilet and Jacuzzi tub/shower. It also contains the closets, safe, ironing board and full length mirrors. Next is the king-size bed, nightstands and dressers. Then two steps down is a sitting area with chairs, table and desk. TV is located on a ledge between the two areas so you can either watch in bed or in the sitting area. From there you lead to the balcony and a perfect view. Royal Suites are on the beach so your view is wonderful. Of course the whole resort is so beautiful and well maintained that garden view is just as great.
* If anyone can figure out how to run the shower without flooding the bathroom, please let me know. We tried turning the shower head in every direction and even stuffing towels between the walls but that only caused a dam effect. In the end we just used the shower handle that was part of the Jacuzzi tub.

Restaurants: Seemed that the crowds started around 8:00-9:00 pm.

Hibiscus International Buffet. Nice selection, very fresh, made to order pasta bars. Plus large range of meats & seafood. Very nice for a more casual breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Marino Seafood: Dinner. Outside patio facing the beach. Shrimp casserole for starters. Great but garlicky so make sure your partner eats some too! Lobster with lime was amazing. Service always smiling.

Dolce Vita (Italian): Lunch & Dinner. Ate there four times and three of those I had the Ravioli. Hot and very tasty. Starters were either Capri salad (tomatoes and mozzarella) which was very fresh or octopus salad which was also very fresh. Besides the raviolis and other pasta dishes, they have great thin-crust pizza with about any imaginable topping. Dessert was an assortment of cookies. Service was fast and fun.

Pavilion (Chinese): Dinner. Starters of spring rolls were great. Very crisp and light. But donít expect hot mustard, the closest they could come up with was a bottle of Tabasco sauce. Lobster was very good and the pork chow mien was wonderful. Brother & I ordered another helping to split it was so good. Service was nice.

La Romantico (French): Dinner. Starter of shrimp cocktail was baby shrimp on a bed of lettuce with a wonderful pink sauce. Ox tail soup, very tasty. I ordered the lamb and it was done to perfection. In fact we all commented that we really did not need knives since the meat was so tender. For dessert order the crepes. The show alone is worth it but then you get to eat them and they were wonderful. Donít forget your cigars.

La Albufera (steak house): Dinner. Open salad bar with meat, cheeses and assorted salads. Ask for the tenderloin, is the best and most tender cut of beef. Again cooked to perfection. We each ordered a different rareness and each order was perfect. Scalloped potatoes were very good. The stuffed potatoes were a tad dry. Dessert was also a serve-yourself variety. Very nice.
*When you make reservations, ask for outside seating.

Rodizzio (Brazil): Dinner. Probably our least favorite restaurant. Food was good, but the set up was kind of strange. Start with a salad and soup bar that has a limited variety. After that a waiter will come to your table with a shish-kabob. You will receive pork, chicken, turkey, lamb, a potato and beef. Each is served as its own course, so you finish your pork, and then they bring you your chicken, and so on. Beef was a bit dry and tough. Plus did not like the lack of a vegetable besides the potato. But the service was wonderful and entertaining.

Antojitos (Mexican): Dinner. Great food and wonderful, fun service. Taco/salad bar for starters had a nice variety and very tasty. Watch out for those peppers though, HOT!! I had the cheese quesadilla and others tried the beef & cheese. All very good. Tried the flambé for dessert. Another restaurant to try and book the patio seating if possible.

La Palapa: Lunch. Skip it! Always way overcrowded and the food always looked picked at and not very hot (temperature wise). Staff tries their best but with so many persons, they are way outnumbered. We always opted for the Hibiscus or La Dolce Vita for lunch and never had to wait and were always pleased with the selection and service.

Breakfast
Hibiscus: Large buffet with made to order eggs, pancakes & waffles. Also yogurt, cereal, fruit, pastries and all the usual sides (bacon, sausageÖ)

Pool: It was large, clean and had many little alcoves for floating and relaxing. Always enough chairs and palm umbrellas for everyone. Pool bar is both upper (out of pool) and lower (in pool) and those guys hustle.

Beach: Long, clean and beautiful. We would walk a few times everyday from one point to the other. Seemed to go on forever. From our walks I can say that the Paradisus beach is one of the cleanest areas. The crews are out every morning around 6:30 am raking and there is always some persons walking around during the day picking up glasses, cigarette butts and such.
* There were issues regarding the beach chairs. Since I am an early beach walker (5:30 am) and usually on the beach for the start of the day by 7:30 we never had any troubles. But those coming out late mornings, did not always find the shady spots that they were hoping for.
* At the left end of the beach, around the turn, are a collection of vendor shacks. You must take the walk to see the deals. Coffee, clothes, sculptures and other souvenirs can all be found and haggled for.

Grounds: The grounds at the resort are amazing. So lush and green with flowers and trees everywhere. The maintenance crew is always working on something and it shows. We were really surprised that for a resort of such size just how clean the grounds always were. No cigarette butts, empty glasses or any other debris anywhere. There are also flowing ponds stocked with Koi (bring a roll from breakfast and they will love you) and beautiful statues throughout the resort.

Royal Service: We chose the Royal Service and I would highly recommend it to anyone. From the moment we booked our trip I was in contact with Mariana, the Royal Service Manager and she was wonderful. She took care of our room requests (we were 2 couples and wanted to be near each other at the resort), made all our dinner reservations before our arrival and even offered to book our golf times ahead for us. The Royal Service lounge offers free internet access, daily newspapers and an assortment of books and movies. They also have a wonderful little restaurant that we used for breakfast everyday. The variety was the same as the larger Hibiscus but much more personal service. We always had Sonia who is an absolute gem. She even tolerated my attempts at Spanish (no easy feat). You can get beverages there all day long including espresso. Also, they have cookies and canapés at 4:00 pm and cocktails before dinner. Royal Service guests also have a reserved spot on the beach and have waiter service for its guests in that area. There wasnít anything that you couldnít ask of the staff of the Royal Service. They were highly efficient, very knowledgeable and still the nicest persons you could ever meet. We are planning a return trip for 2005 and will definitely use the Royal Service again.

Overall view:
Wonderful vacation!! We first tried Paradisus in Costa Rica in 2003 and were amazed at their outstanding service and beautiful resort grounds. That made us decide to try another Paradisus location just to see if it was the norm or a fluke. We were pleasantly surprised to find the same high level of quality at both locations. We have traveled to various Sandals locations for the past 7 years prior to Paradisus, but must now state that we will probably be traveling the Paradisus sites in the future.

My Webshots page for photos: http://community.webshots.com/user/lisa490

Any questions, you can email me directly at [email protected].
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Old Apr 28th, 2006, 01:18 PM
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Lisa1271,
Was your golf included in your AI price? Or was it part of your Royal Service package? How far away was the course? Was transportation available, or provided? Were you able to play every day (you may not have, but could one play every day?)
If the golf was not included, do you remember what it cost -- greens fees, cart, caddies (if there were caddies)?
Thanks!!!!
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Old Apr 29th, 2006, 01:36 PM
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Just realized I posted Paradisus Costa Rica. Here is Punta Cana. Sorry about that.
Paradisus Punta Cana May 2005

For starters, we were there in April 2004. Some of this report is a repeat from 2004ís report since there wasnít much changed, but there are some additions.

Air travel: Living in Niagara Falls NY, we usually travel out of Toronto, Ontario. The flights are non-stop and the Canadian exchange is nice too. This year when we booked with Air Transat Holidays we upgraded to Club Transat. Major difference and I would highly recommend it. Seating was 2-3-2 in very roomy leather seats compared to the 3-3-3 cramped seating in the remainder of the plane. Also the fast Club check in both at Toronto and Punta Cana really made the upgrade more than worth it for the fee.
* Donít forget youíll need $20 US CASH per person for departure tax from Punta Cana.
* We took a cab from the airport to the resort instead of waiting for the resort bus. The cab was only $22 US plus tip and we got there in about 25 minutes. Taking the bus you have to wait for all the other persons to get their luggage, get signed in and then you have to make to rounds to all the resorts for drop off, not just yours. All depends on your budget and patience either to choose the cab or not.

Resort check in: We chose the Royal Service and I would highly recommend it to anyone. Upon arrival to the resort we were taken to the Royal Service offices for check in. We arrived around 2:30 and by the time we finished our paperwork and some catch up with the staff our rooms were ready and we headed to building #30 as we had requested.

Bungalows: These are16 unit buildings, 8 to a side, 4 up & 4 down. Get 2nd floor if possible; more private and has vaulted ceilings. Also try and get the corner rooms. Their balconies wrap around the side of the buildings so you actually get two views. The rooms have a large bathroom with a separate room for the toilet and Jacuzzi tub/shower. It also contains the closets, safe, ironing board and full length mirrors. Next is the king-size bed, nightstands and dressers. Then two steps down is a sitting area with chairs, table and desk. TV is located on a ledge between the two areas so you can either watch in bed or in the sitting area. From there you lead to the balcony and a perfect view. Royal Suites are on the beach so your view is wonderful. Of course the whole resort is so beautiful and well maintained that garden view is just as great.

Restaurants: Seemed that the crowds started around 8:00-9:00 pm.

Hibiscus International Buffet. Nice selection, very fresh, made to order pasta bars. Plus large range of meats & seafood. Very nice for a more casual breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Marino Seafood: Dinner. Outside patio facing the beach. Lobster with lime was amazing. Service always smiling.

Dolce Vita (Italian): Lunch & Dinner. Starters were usually Capri salad (tomatoes and mozzarella) which was very fresh plus they brought tomato brushetta and garlic bread to the table. They have great thin-crust pizza with about any imaginable topping. Service was fast and fun although the restaurant is too lit for dinner IMHO.

Pavilion (Chinese): Dinner. Starters of dumplings were great. Service was nice.

La Romantico (French): Dinner. Had the Risotto for the main course, very nicely done. For dessert order the crepes. Donít forget your cigars.

La Albufera (steak house): Didnít do this time. (See 2004 report for details).

Rodizzio (Brazil): Didnít do this time. (See 2004 report for details).

Antojitos (Mexican): Dinner. Great food and wonderful, fun service. Taco/salad bar for starters had a nice variety and very tasty. Watch out for those peppers though, HOT.

Sahura (Japanese): Hibachi seating with about 12 persons. Started with appetizers, then soup and a choice of various dishes with chicken, seafood or meat. All meals were well done (chicken a little over done) and the service was very good, although a bit conservative for a Hibachi chef (usually they are quite flamboyant!). The deep-fried ice cream for dessert definitely needs some work.

La Palapa: Lunch: Always seemed overcrowded and the food always looked picked at and not very hot (temperature wise). Staff tries their best but with so many persons, they are way outnumbered. We always opted for the Hibiscus or La Dolce Vita for lunch and never had to wait and were always pleased with the selection and service.

Breakfast
Hibiscus: Large buffet with made to order eggs, pancakes & waffles. Also yogurt, cereal, fruit, pastries and all the usual sides (bacon, sausageÖ)

Pool: It was large, clean and had many little alcoves for floating and relaxing. Always enough chairs and palm umbrellas for everyone. Pool bar is both upper (out of pool) and lower (in pool) and those guys hustle.

Beach: Long, clean and beautiful. We would walk a few times everyday from one point to the other. Seemed to go on forever. From our walks I can say that the Paradisus beach is one of the cleanest areas. The crews are out every morning around 6:30 am raking and there is always some persons walking around during the day picking up glasses, cigarette butts and such.
* There were issues regarding the beach chairs. Since I am an early beach walker (5:30 am) and usually on the beach for the start of the day by 7:30 we never had any troubles. But those coming out late mornings, did not always find the shady spots that they were hoping for.
* At the left end of the beach, around the turn, are a collection of vendor shacks. You must take the walk to see the deals. Coffee, clothes, sculptures and other souvenirs can all be found and haggled for.

Grounds: The grounds at the resort are amazing. So lush and green with flowers and trees everywhere. The maintenance crew is always working on something and it shows. We were really surprised that for a resort of such size just how clean the grounds always were. No cigarette butts, empty glasses or any other debris anywhere. There are also flowing ponds stocked with Koi (bring a roll from breakfast and they will love you) and beautiful statues throughout the resort.

Royal Service: We chose the Royal Service and I would highly recommend it to anyone. From the moment we booked our trip I was in contact with Mariana, the Royal Service Manager and she was wonderful. She took care of our room requests (we were 2 couples and wanted to be near each other at the resort), made all our dinner reservations before our arrival and even offered to book our golf times ahead for us. The Royal Service lounge offers free internet access, daily newspapers and an assortment of books and movies. They also have a wonderful little restaurant that we used for breakfast everyday. The variety was the same as the larger Hibiscus but much more personal service. You can get beverages there all day long including espresso. Also, they have appetizers and cocktails before dinner starting at 7:00. Royal Service guests also have a reserved spot on the beach and have waiter service for its guests in that area. There wasnít anything that you couldnít ask of the staff of the Royal Service. They were highly efficient, very knowledgeable and still the nicest persons you could ever meet.

Manager Party: Outside the Main Lobby in Wednesdays starting at 7:00. Loads of food and drinks and a great opportunity to meet the managers and discuss the resort.

Beach Party: Saturday nights. Fun on the beach with games and grills!!

My Webshots page for photos: http://community.webshots.com/user/lisa490

Any questions, you can email me directly at [email protected].

Lisa S


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Old May 29th, 2006, 12:22 PM
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LS
 
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Hi Karin -

Just returned last night from our first trip to PPC. We were in building 29 and were really pleased with the location. It's away from all of the noise of the central restaurant/pool area. We were with friend who were in building 21, and they heard a lot of noise from people returning to their rooms at night.

One note - building 29 is near the edge of the property, so it's a 3 to 4 minute walk to restaurants, bars and pools. So if you want to be in the middle of all the action, 29 would probably not be right for you.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old May 29th, 2006, 12:55 PM
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Golf Guy:

Yes, the golf is included, greens fees only - with "regular" service - don't need to be Royal. The course was lovely, not very difficult, and fun to play. It is 15 min from the hotel and they provided transport at no charge.

You can play as many times as you like. You'll want to take a cart - too hot to walk - which costs $35 per person.

You can rent clubs - I think they were Calloways - for $50.
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Old May 31st, 2006, 05:38 AM
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LS,

Thanks very much for the golf info.

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