Playa Dorada, Puerto Plata
"Good Value for your cost."
Posted by: Bob on Feb 6, 2014
see all reviews
The Grand Paradise Playa Dorada has everything you could want in a tropical vacation. The resort lies on a beautiful beach on the Dominican Republic's scenic northern coast.
Share your experiences with others. Don't forget to send your review to Debbie by using an easy form.
"I still think it is the best resort in the Playa Dorada complex"
Gina and Rick on Feb 1, 2009 >
1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2009
244 people found this review helpful
Jan 29th with sky service. A group of ten of us went on Holiday. Flight was late but nothing you can do about weather. Flight home was even later and our luggage was in Toronto long before us.
The rooms are clean and well kept. The only problem was we were on the ground floor and the patio door didn't lock. After a few complaints to the front desk they screwed it shut and we couldn't open it for the rest of the holiday.
Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet and Italian was very good. Edens was very poor service and never did get dinner rolls or dessert. The waiters were not busy but didn't seem to want to wait on us. After 2 hours left and never did get offered coffee or dessert or wine. The salad bar lacked the main ingredient Lettuce. The Buffet is the greatest always something to eat and lots of choices. When I go back I wouldn't waste my time on the ala carte restraunts.
The beach was beautiful and the ocean was great for swimming. The pool was to cool for us and it didn't seem to get much use.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
DO NOT BOOK AN EXCURSION WITH CARLOS...He is a rip off. We booked the jeep safari and didn't get to see anything we were promised. Picked us half and hour late had to stop for gas,pop and ice. A very disappointing day...John is the guy on the beach to book tours with. Don't forget to go down the beach to the left to the orange market great prices and alot of fun bargaining.
A great resort but still has a few growing pains from the major renovations... I still think it is the best resort in the Playa Dorada complex.. Would I go back.........in a heart beat
"It rained all week but we really made the best of it."
Linda on Feb 1, 2009 >
15 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2009
267 people found this review helpful
Arrival: February 2- 10
When we arrived the staff was excellant . They Welcomed us with a tropical drink waited a few minutes for check in. We arrived at around 5 Pm. We had reserved a 2 bedroom suite. Our friends room was ready but Ours ajoining was not going to be ready till about 7. We were not happy due to flying all day and wanting to change our clothes but we put our suitcases in our friends room to proceed to check out the property.
This was our night mare for three days. The rooms operate off of your room key for electricity to your room. We put our key in and it blew a few fuses. When we went to reset we were zap by the electricity. No power could not reset called the front desk at 9 they stated that they would send someone to our room. Midnight went to sleep with noone coming to our room. We sat in the dark with no aircondioning for 2 hours.
This situation happened again the next day when they claimed they fixed it in the morning. Once again waited for it ot be fixed. On Wednesday we went on Our excursion after this happened again called the front desk was told that it would be fixed. Come back to the room nothing was fixed. Went to the Front desk asked for manager not there. Directed us to Guest Service and this woman had me sit there for 30 minutes. Missed lunch. Went she went to the room when she got Zapped then it was important. At this time very frustrated with the whole thing of getting zapped not feeling safe in the room (just thinking electrical fire) so we even went to the RCI rep on property . No concerns. I called RCI directly then things stared to happen. On Thursday they finally put us in two very nice rooms. Mind you the decor was beautiful in the other room looked out at the Ocean but just was frustrated about the whole electrical thing.
Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet was wonderful at each meal. Did not know about hte hamburger & Pizza that is at the Edens resturaunt until Friday.
Do not reccomend Michangelo. The sauce is nothing like you get here in Chicago. Edens was wonderful everything that we tried but the service was poor.
If you go here look for Allen. He is the funniest Bartender. They switch bars everyday. But he will remember your drinks and make you laugh. Swim up bar was cold but I had to try it.
We could only lay out for two days due to rain most of our trip.
They really take care of their beach and of the grounds and pool.
Just beware you will be bugged by every beach vendor just Say no if you do not want to be bother. The funniest thing we saw when we were asking about the bartering they started with a price say it was $10 we would say $7 then they would come back and say $15. Never ever saw this before . We all had a great laugh about this all week.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel::
Activities were never posted until Saturday at the front desk and the towel desk. So we never knew what was going on. Just watched the crowd.
We took a private tour from a Taxi driver who introduced himself at the hotel on our second day in the morning at the entrance. Felix was wonderful. Showed us the best places to shop. Took us in the mountains and was very reasonable. If you ask anyone of the Taxi or people at stores or airpoert they know him.
All in all in rained all week but we really made the best of it. The hotel really needs to get people skills and managers need to stop hiding. We had no idea about tours because the RCI rep was not there at the hotel until Wednesday so we would ask questions and poeple would look at us stupid.
We met two gentleman from Austria on the first day who had their winter parka's and hats on who jumped into the pool were these coats on. They helped to make our trip wonderful and enjoyed talking to them each day.
"I would recommend this resort to almost anyone"
Margaret on Feb 1, 2009 >
4 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2009
254 people found this review helpful
Arrival: Feb 9 - 16
Booked last minute so was very happy with the price and definitely got my money's worth. Flew with Skyservice and I will not fly with them again. I'm 5'4" and had no legroom at all; I don't know how anyone taller coped. I've flown many times and have never had this little room.
Check in was very smooth, probably helped by the fact that only a dozen people from the flight were at this hotel. I was very happy to get the key to the safe and the TV remote at check in; usually you have to go back to the desk later for these. Also pleased to be given 2 room keys [again unusual in my experience].
Had a superior garden view room, 3rd floor in building 2. I had asked for a quiet building and this is what I got. The ocean view would have been very nice. The pool view rooms would have been nosy until after 11pm as evening activities are right at the pool.The view wasn't the best, looking out onto the roof of the lobby/reception building, but it was still very pleasant to sit out on the balcony. The 3rd floor room had a vaulted ceiling which made the room look even bigger. Very nice room, very clean and obviously new. Didn't have any problems with hot water at any time.
Our phone wasn't connected but we didn't realize this for the first few days. Hadn't been fixed by the time we left. There was a phone in the lobby that we were able to use.
Had a chance to visit one of the junior suites on the 4th floor. A much larger room with 2 rooms. Very nice but none of these rooms have a balcony
Restaurants and Bars
The buffet was very good at each meal. We didn't visit any of the A-la-carte restaurants, but that was out choice. The pizza and snacks at Edens were nice as well. The bars close at midnight. This was one of the reasons we booked here, as it usually makes for a quieter resort. There were a fair number of people who were annoyed by this though, obviously expecting more nightlife; they were quite vocal about this affecting their alcohol consumption. The drinks were not watered down and service was excellent at all of the bars.
Rained for the first 3 days, but sometimes that happens. Spent the rest of the time at both the pool and the beach. More shade available at the pool though. The beach and grounds were well taken care of. If you are particular about where you sit, you may have to get out earlier and 'save' chairs with a towel. I was able to get the chairs I wanted at 8am. There wasn't too much abuse of this, which was good. I've been to other eresorts where it was a real problem. Nothing is more annoying than people who save chairs and then don't actually sit in them. No problem at all with the beach vendors, if you said no thank you, they left you alone.
I would recommend this resort to almost anyone [maybe not if it's important that you drink your body weight in alcohol]. Please please remember that this is not Canada/US. Don't hold them to your usual standards. Everything is not going to be like it is at home so you're just setting yourself up to be disappointed.
"It is a terrific place to visit"
Ann on Jan 1, 2009 >
8 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2009
231 people found this review helpful
Arrival: Past 7 years recently Dec 18
Dec 18 and going again Feb 3 We have been to 3 other hotels in Puerto Plata and this one is by far one of the best especially in the food department. What is a vacation without good food.
The rooms are beautiful and comfortable, very clean and relaxing with the new furniture. It is nice to have balconies in every room as it's nice to sit out at night or in the morning, watching the sunset or sunrise if this is the side your on of the resort.
Restaurants and Bars:
The food is acceptional, the variety is endless if you don't like something there is something else to chose from. If you want it simple they have that also. They have it so your eating right on the beach you can just look around and see the beautiful surroundings. The servers are very friendly and efficient.The food is kept hot and fresh along with good presentation.
This resort the beach is one of the nicest beaches I have seen in Puerto Plata very clean and well kept. Very close to everything so if your there to just relax then you can do that without having to go very far for snacks, drinks or if wanting to take part in the daily activities they are right there as well along with the water sports again not having to go far it's all right there. Everything is very convienently right at hand.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The daily activities are great fun there are activities for all ages. If you want something simple as darts or very physical they have it. The staff presenting these games are a hoot, they make is so fun having so much laughter. The shows at night were very good a variety of shows with having the audience involved. Again laugh and laugh at what they come up with. At that time they were just getting some acts together so there were many nights of the dancing got to be a bit much but was told new shows were to come.
Pool tables, Ping pong tables to many things to mention. Can't wait until the gym is open, don't know when that will be.
We always go on the tour Jeep Safari this is the best for your money. Climbing the falls in the mountain is an experience of a life time. No need to worry about purchasing your tours on the beach it is safe we always do as it is cheaper.
This resort is very close to the plaza and not far from Puerto Plata it is safe even to walk to the local highway and hop on a local bus for 20 peso's and go to Puerto Plata. Just down the beach a nice walk there is a mini flea market. When you shop always go at least half of what they are asking as they bargain and will try to get as much as you will give. Half of what they are asking is plenty and sometimes still to much. When you shop at any of the markets it will be a pain in the butt as each one will say come to see mine (when you go you will understand what I mean). Just make it clear when shopping that you will let them know if you want something not to bug you.
The resort has been recently renovated so as was mentiioned still some little gliches but they are right there to fix anything your not happy with. It is a terrific place to visit and meet great people or just stay to yourself. There is not just one word that can discribe the feeling you get while vacationing at this resort. Hope to see you there some time.
"The whole hotel has really been improved appearance"
Bob on Jan 1, 2009 >
10 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2009
243 people found this review helpful
The whole hotel has really been improved appearance wise and the rooms have all been gutted and redone and really look nice with all new furniture and a brand new wide screen TV in each room.
Buildings 1 through 11 on the west half as well as 12, 13 & 15 on the east half are open for occupancy and they expect to have Buildings 14 & 16 facing on the east beach open next week with Buildings 17 through 20 being opened as they are completed.
Staff wise there a many new faces, but also some of the old staff has returned with more returning as they open more rooms and need more staff.
They have added features the will make it better for children especially teenagers, like pool tables, game tables and such, which are located in the building where the old casino was located.
Also in the building where the old casino was located is the disco, a new gym/spa and a large room for the shows so that they can be preformed no matter what the weather.
The casino is now located off the lobby where the Crazy Moon Disco was but at present it is not open as they are waiting for new slot machines, also the gym is not open as the equipment for it has not been delivered yet.
Like any resort that has been re-opened after major renovations, there are a few minor teething pains which are being quickly resolved.
They have added many new features and you can see some of them on a Facebook web page my son created and you do not have to be a Facebook member to view them as he made it open to the public. At this time there are 173 pictures with more being added from time to time. The Facebook URL is:
The food as always is as good if not better than has always been.
And the staff old and new are as pleasant and helpful as possible.