Ocean Blue and Sand Reviews


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Ocean Blue and Sand  

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

"Great vacation"
Posted by: John  on Nov 22, 2014
see all reviews

Ocean Blue and Sand Reviews
Ocean Blue and Sand Pictures and Information
Ocean Blue and Sand Punta Cana-Bavaro Dominican Republic

#10
of 78 Hotels in Punta Cana-Bavaro

User rating 4.1

Based on 46 reviews

Ocean Blue and Sand Information


Right on the sea front at the wonderful beaches of Bávaro, immersed in the luscious tropical green of palm trees and close to the White Sands golf course, the H10 Ocean Blue and H10 Ocean Sand hotels dispose of complete suites, all-inclusive services*, and an extensive activity program to make your stay an unforgettable experience.

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Ocean Blue and Sand Reviews

Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.1 of 5 46 reviews
Excellent
  15
Very good
  20
Average
  7
Poor
  2
Terrible
  1
By Occasion...
Business (1)
Leisure (23)
Wedding (3)
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By Traveler Type...
Family and Kids (14)
Solo Traveller (1)
With friend (3)
With Group (4)
With Spouse/Partner (5)
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1 - 10 of 46

"Great vacation"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  John  on Nov 22, 2014  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Nov, 2014 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
11 people found this review helpful


My wife and I spent 10 days at Ocean Blue and Sand,we have been to this resort 3 times.We cannot say enough about the excellent service we received from Judith,Davila,Luis,Junior,Jonathan,and Miguel in guest services,and our housekeeper Sandra.The service in the restaurants is very good.the grounds are kept very clean.My wife and I will definitely return to this resort

Room Number:
6111

Room Block:
Villa 6

Arrival:
05/11/2014

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"o jokes, this is paradise on earth!!"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  penny  on Sep 10, 2014  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jun, 2014 | Leisure | Solo
19 people found this review helpful

This resort is paradise on earth, this no joke and I highly recommend it to you if you are looking for a place to spend your vacation. The staff is extra and extremely hardworking, always checking on you to make sure you are enjoying yourself, they are so friendly here, very special people. The rooms are immaculate, they are kept clean every day, big and has everything you will need. The place is breathtaking and beautiful. This resort is outstanding, extremely comfortable, in fact, I can’t begin to describe how wonderful this place is, and you need to see it for yourself. It is a great choice of resort if you want to unwind, relax and have fun all at the same time. They have the best and most talented animation team in charge of making sure no day goes by without you having as much fun as you can. Lots of shows and fun things to do, the team is very energetic. The restaurants are great, they have extensive cuisine choices and they are delicious, the staffs that serve the food wear contagious smiles and are friendly. There are different ranges of drinks available for the guests; they serve the best coffee in the mornings here at Ocean blue. The lobby bar has exquisite range of drinks; there are lots of bars, swim up bar, beach bar, theatre bar and all of that. It is a 5 star hotel that I will definitely come back to, thanks for a wonderful time.

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"Very Poor Experience"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  Marie  on May 8, 2014  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2014 | Wedding | Family and Kids
88 people found this review helpful

We went to Ocean Blue for a family wedding. Let me first comment that the wedding was absoutely beautiful and perfect.

However a number of flaws in the visit overshadowed the wedding. We traveled with a 14 month old who became very sick. We asked the hotel staff to call the on site doctor and we were told the doctor would be 40 minutes to 90 minutes before he could visit. The baby started to have a reaction to a high fever which the mother knew immediately medical care was needed asap. At that point rather than wait for the on site doctor to come we asked the hotel staff to call a cab to take us to the hospital. Noteworthy it was late at night, everything was dark when we arrived. Ten minutes into the ride the cab driver stopped and told us he ran out of gas. Keep in mind you now have a crying, coughing baby and two terrified women in the vehicle in a foreign country. Motorcycles stopped on the side of the road to take a look and left, cars whizzed by....then we realized the cab was still running. If he ran out of gas why was the car still running? About ten minutes later another cab pulled up and took us to the hospital. This cab driver recognized at least how sick the our little passenger was and traveled at great speed, albeit on the wrong side of the road with oncoming cars, cut people off but we did get to the hospital. At the hospital as would be expected in a foreign country, we were not admitted (no matter how sick you are) until they could valid that an insurance company was covering the cost of the visit. After 45 minutes on the phone with the insurance company and the receptionist it was confirmed the visit was covered. It was determined by the doctor the baby had a temperature of 104, pink eye, a chest infection and croup. After receiving treatment and the prescribed medication we asked the receptionist to call a cab to return us to the resort. She informed us she would not make the call until she received the approval from the insurance company for the payment of the visit. Another 45 minutes later approval was provided, a cab was called and we returned to the resort.

Room Number:
3211

Room Block:
3

Arrival:
April 27-14

Rooms:
clean when you kept after the staff.

Restaurants and Bars:
In addition to the above horrible experience, the food was an embarrassment, it was unappetizing, not preserved well and no variety. There is nothing open 24 hours to eat at, no poolside cafe that you are able to get a snack which does not work well when travelling with children. When they are hungry they want to eat, they won't wait.

Other Comments:
The following morning I asked to speak to the resort Manager and was told he was unavailable and I was also told that the individuals who called the cab (the bell boys) were not the responsibility of the resort and I had to go to another area to voice our complaint. I went to the designated area and explained to the gentleman behind the desk what happened, and his response was in a sarcastic tone "What is it you want me to do? We can't do anything about this." Perhaps not him personally but the resort should be responsible for the safety of their guests and if there is a medical emergency that they cannot accomodate on the premises and they send the guest off site, you would expect the well being of that individual would be first and foremost on their minds. There should be procedures in place that are followed such that validate the arrival at the hospital and the return back to the resort safely. A courtesy follow up with the guest and a report shoud be on file. If they call a cab in these circumstances they should ensure it is able to fullfill the requirement, not leave them stranded in the middle of nowhere.

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"Blue and Sand, just what we like! "

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  ML  on Oct 28, 2013  >  3 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2013 | Leisure | With friend
193 people found this review helpful


Once we got to our rooms, our bags were quickly delivered, and the rest of the week was great.
The Privilege service was worth the upgrade for the nice room location, which was also nearby to the Privilege lounge and the Privilege a la carte breakfast restaurant.
We also enjoyed service during the day at the Privilege beach area, and having the Bucanero lobster dinner included at no extra charge. (non Privilege pays $40 or more for this).
We never did visit the spa as planned because there were massages right on the beach which was nice, and something different from what we could get at home.
Rooms were spacious and our second floor room had a larger balcony with great view. Room could have used a few more drawers or shelves, but we made do. Due to the humidity (even though it is not bad in January) the wooden drawers did stick a bit.
Mini bar was replenished often with various liquors, two bottles of wine daily, and the usual beer and soft drinks.
Apple had a party for its clients one night with very good entertainment, lots of singing and dancing, and a buffet dinner, and the drinks flowed freely with good table service.
During our stay we also enjoyed the Mexican, Italian, Steakhouse, and Dominican restaurants.

I would return to this resort. In fact we are now booked to return after the first of the new year!

Room Block:
6

Arrival:
I'll start with the con, as there was only ONE. Checkin.
We were booked Privilege, and first they said they couldn't find our reservation, then they did, but no record of the email requests sent by our TA nor the ones I personally sent via their Privilege website. There was confusion caused by two persons checking in our party of 4 for the two rooms.
Paperwork was passed back and forth and some of my Apple documentation was not returned to me, which should have been.
We were not greeted with any refreshment, nor any cooling towels as others have indicated are standard greeting. After being there for some time, I asked for some water and it was brought.
Despite this, Jonnathan did continue to smile and worked on getting us pool/ocean view rooms in Privilege Villa 6, and also arranged a dinner reservation for our first night since they could not find any of the requests sent. Apparently the problems are with their computer system, not their employees.

Rooms:
Rooms were very nice, plenty of space, and nice large bathroom---convenient for two women prepping for dinner each night!
No problems.
We will book Privilege for the nice location again for sure.

Restaurants and Bars:
Lobby bar did not impress, but apparently it was prepping for renovations which are going on fall of 2013 and will be completed in time for the holiday high season.
We got great drink service on the beach, plus we had use of the Privilege lounge.
Enjoyed all the restaurants, tried a different a la carte each night--another good reason to book privilege, it's better than not booking privilege and then whining that you couldn't get dinner RESERVATIONS, haha.
Our "no extra charge for Privilege" lobster dinner at Buccanero was fun, I'd warn folks that it can get windy at night there on the beach, ladies might want their wrap.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Very nice, never had a problem getting a seat at the pool in late afternoon, after spending most of the day at the Privilege beach.

Other Comments:
Special note of excellent service and friendliness from server named Algeron (Chino) at breakfast and at the Dominican restaurant (Casa de mi abuela). Very friendly and respectful, never too pushy, but always a smile and joking, adding to the enjoyment.

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"not really a 5 star!!"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 3.0 of 5

Posted by:  kelly  on Apr 28, 2013  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2013 | Wedding | With Group
255 people found this review helpful

45 people arrived for a wedding on Saturday the 20th at 10:30am.....couldn't check into rooms until 4:30....wasted a whole day....staff kept telling us only 10 minutes, only 10 minutes!!! Not impressed! Showers were a night mare...only "half" shower door....water leaks all over MARBLE FLOORS which are very slippery when wet!!! On several occasions we found staff at least 4 or 5 sitting on the stair case and when trying to get by(excusing yourself)received dirty looks!!! We tipped our Maid 20 US dollars a day plus gifts!! and lucky if our room was cleaned up by 4:00......

Food was no great shakes!!! enough so that you didn't go hungry, but very unorganized...no reservations taken! line up only,,,,poorly cooked meat,,,small steaks served to three out of 4 people (who returned the steaks as they tasted "off" one friend became quite ill later the same night from the steak.....burgers were ok on the beach grill....grounds were beautiful,,,,pool great....but very long distances between dining rooms/rooms/beach.....but walking was wonderful when able to avoid "Sales pitches" and beach "bartering was becoming ridiculous!!!would we go back...probably not...just not impressed with food at all...and staff were not that pleasant....the trip to the Island was breathtaking!!! Franklin was our guide and would highly recommend this excursion!!!!!

Arrival:
Poor 5 hour wait for rooms

Rooms:
Clean

Restaurants and Bars:
Poor

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Excellent

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"Grossly Overrated"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 3.0 of 5

Posted by:  Leon  on Aug 27, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Aug, 2012 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
415 people found this review helpful

It is logical for most to peruse the reviews of the various resorts available and then make a decision because on the extent to which the positive reviews outweigh the negative ones. I chose Ocean Blue based on this logic, but I also noted what the nay-sayers wrote as well. My wife and I just returned from this short trip (8/23-8/26), and although the weather was impacted by rain from storm Isaac, I will not include it as a factor here in my observations.

This resort and its services are grossly overrated. I would rank it a score of 3 of 5 overall. I would recommend prospective visitors to explore other options at the same price. It did not meet my expectations at all. I have read some positive reviewers advise that if you come with “reasonable” expectations, you would be pleased. My response to this is that I believe that most hard-working Americans (and others) who spend this kind of money for a resort are reasonable people who know when they receive or do not receive reasonable value for their money. Ocean Blue falls noticeably short on this.

I would say that I am certainly not impressed with Ocean Blue and cannot recommend this resort for the price paid.


Room Block:
Villa 5

Rooms:
Well maintained.

Restaurants and Bars:
Food is always an important element of any vacation and it is with me even though I am not complicated when it comes to meals. But I expect quality that befits the reputation of the resort. My wife and I ate at the buffet most of the time, as well as at the American diner Route 66, Mi Abuela (Dominican cuisine), the beach buffet, and Bucanero seafood restaurant. We tried making reservations and the steakhouse and Italian restaurant but the process is utter nonsense. There is a small window of time to line up and make reservations at these restaurants, and if you cannot line up at these times, you are out of luck (and there is no waiting list or second chance later in the evening). Don’t waste your vacation time to spend on a line to do this. That is one way they try to persuade guests to sign up for their H10 Privilege Club.

The buffet food in all respects (options, quality and service) is disappointing. I do all-inclusive a few times a year, mostly in Cancun, and the buffet at Ocean Blue is NOT up to par. I found much better meals at Route 66 and Mi Abuela. The Bucanero seafood restaurant is a paid restaurant at $40 per person. It is a plain ripoff. Basically, it is an open-sided thatched-roof shed at the edge of the beach with about eight wooden picnic-style table-and-benches on the sand. They call the dinner a “romantic seafood dinner for two.” I ordered the lobster dinner for both of us. We got a small grilled half-lobster, the tail the size of a jumbo shrimp (the rest of the body roasted an inedible because it contained nothing, not even claws), a tiny piece of fish (grouper filet), a tiny scoop of rice, and some vegetables. Remember, now, this is a tiny lobster, the tail the size of a large shrimp, and each of us got half of each side. We had wine which was good. They listed about four dessert items and all were unavailable except one. We were done with this fiasco in less than 30 minutes and headed back to the main buffet, while my wife nursed the many bites from the mosquitoes there. Luckily I wore long pants with shoes and socks. I would say that the food tasted good, but the size of the portion was an absolute ripoff.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Here are the positives. Nice layout and design of the resort area and in good condition throughout. Up front is the main check-in lobby that includes a bar and lounge area and other guest service offices. Immediately behind the main lobby is a circular courtyard with ponds flanked by the main restaurants, casino, gift-shop and “disco” (my kids remind me that they call it a “club” nowadays). Two parallel rows of three story villas with balconies lead from the courtyard area down to the beach, separated in the middle by the pools. It is a rather long walk down to the beach from the front, but there are always golf carts passing by to take you back and forth, a day and night, sun or rain. The grounds and pools are well maintained, the room was clean, in good condition, spacious and well appointed, everything worked, and the attendant did a fine job.

Now here are some issues that other guests have written about that I would validate as true. First, there is a noticeable odor of sewer as soon as you step out of the lobby area into the courtyard right behind it. It smells like an overflowing sewer and seems to be more pungent near the casino area. This odor did not dissipate during the four days I was there. Note that this is the same area where the restaurants are also. Someone who is there at this moment and reading this might want to check it out and verify.

The seaweed on the beach is a major issue, not a minor problem. Especially at Ocean Blues’ beachfront it was piled up in huge mounds along the beach. About 20 feet into the water, everything looked like a muddy mess. Not a pretty sight (I took pictures). About six workers came with their rakes to tackle the problem, they looked around in despair, made a few gestures with rakes in hand, and then left having done nothing. A few hours later half of them returned with rakes in hand while the tide was rising. They looked on as the waves did the job of pulling the mounds back into the ocean. Not a rake was lifted in the process to clean up the seaweed. So I walked over a mile down Bavaro to see how the other resorts were handling this problem. Much smaller mounds of seaweed at the other places, and workers carting off the seaweed with wheelbarrows. I noticed treadmarks of tractor wheels on the compressed sand, so I figured that they must have used a tractor to shovel off the seaweed. Ocean Blue’s seaweed was the worst and it was left unattended until the high tides came and washed it back into the ocean. I can also tell you that the seaweed problem was evident along the entire stretch of Bavaro beach that I walked (about 2 miles). The beach itself, however, is nice, wide and with soft sand. The water is not too rough, with gentle waves.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Other items of brief mention. There is really no full-cast entertainment show that I saw when I was there. Just three young men dressed in white everything every evening doing some dancing and comedy skit on stage for about an hour or so. The main lobby has wifi that is painfully slow. You have to pay for Internet near the lobby area to get decent service. If you wish to make a phone call back home, they sell a $5 US Claro phone card that gives you a whopping 15 minutes of call time. The drinks are normally what you would expect at an all-inclusive. I tried a few and they were decent. I am not a drinker and had just one Presidente beer from their well-stocked refrigerator in our room. Always had bottled water and soda supplied with no problems. My wife, an avid coffee connoisseur, enjoyed Mike’s Coffee. Did not partake in any excursions as I prefer to spend my few days just relaxing without hassle to join or buy anything or engage in adventure.

Other Comments:
Room maintenance was excellent, and transportation around the resort the same. But there is big problem with the men who work at this resort and I blame management for this. Yes, they constantly stalk you to sign up for their Privilege club. They are everywhere, aggressive and sometimes impolite. They drive around in the golf carts, stop when they see you, and say “come here.” If you go, they start asking you intrusive and deceptive questions with the intention of taking you to the privilege club reps at the front. We were at the beach buffet once and one of the cooks came around and put his hand around my wife’s waist asking if he could help her. She immediately told him to get his hand off her and he should not be doing that. The men I also noticed are constantly winking at the female guests, even when their husbands or boyfriends are around. I have read similar reports of this type of behavior.

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"Beautiful Resort"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Danielle  on Apr 1, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Mar, 2012 | Leisure | With Group
598 people found this review helpful

Stayed at Ocean Sands for a week, a beautiful relaxing vacation. Bavaro beach was amazing, the staff were so involved with the guests, very friendly service and a flawless experience. We stayed with a group of 9 and travelled with 2 kids under the age of 5.The staff were great with the children and always loved to make them smile. This vacation hot spot is highly recommended if you are looking for a "kid friendly" vacation. Everynight at the buffet was a theme night, therefore lots of variety but for the most part you saw similar foods being offered. A special thanks to "Willi" who made our vacation very memorable and made us feel like one big happy family. Mickey mouse, elmo, charlie brown were all amazing from the animation team. Keep up the great work!

Room Block:
8

Rooms:
Rooms are clean and spacious, always smelling fresh each day. Often found that bedding was damp only because it's so hot in those places.

Restaurants and Bars:
Not too many bars in the resort! The pool bar was always packed with party people. Not your typical quiet resort, we stayed during spring break where crowds of young people surrounded the grounds.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Pool was amazing, never too packed in the morning or afternoon. However, if you plan on visiting the beach at some point throughout the day, make sure to save your seats by the pool.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
More activities are offered at the pool, there's a kids club, however not too much going on there.

Other Comments:
Great stay, friendly staff, amazing vacation...highly recommended! :)

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"Wonderful Family vacation @H10 Ocean Blue"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  barb  on Feb 11, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2012 | Leisure | Family and Kids
614 people found this review helpful

We have just returned from the Ocean Blue h10, after a week and are planning next years return trip. Its the staff that make the stay to wonderful. The entertainment staff, Willi, Charlie, muscle man Dori (Sp?), Samuel, and all the rest, and the staff, Carlos ( my daughter just loved you), Francesco (thanks for the hat! your great!), Efran, who had my tea for me ready in the afternoon,and I wish I could remember all the names, they were all wonderful and made the trip so enjoyable. Go to the Ocean Blue if you want the vacation of a life time.
The hotel was clean and so nice, the pools great, the beachfront was superb, but again its the people, that make it, they were so much fun and so friendly, they made us feel like part of the H10 family!!
We will be back.
Barb Miller

Room Number:
9117

Room Block:
villa 9

Arrival:
Feb 1st, 2012 to Feb 8th, 2012

Rooms:
So clean and neat the cleaning staff was great, way to go cleaning staff good job

Restaurants and Bars:
So much variety, the serving staff at all restaurants were great......we love Mikes!! The bar tenders at all the bars were A1, great fun.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Pools were spectacular, the grounds manicured, and the beach was the best on the stretch of beach

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The guys in the morning at the beach and afternoon by the pool and at night in the theatre, each and every one of them brought a new and fun side to our trip, they were sooooo much fun!! keep them all, the H10 Ocean blue are lucky to have them all, we love Willi, Charlie Brown and Sam and the rest of the guys!

Other Comments:
I just wish I could remember all the names of those who made our trip so memorable, the whole experience was wonderful, this was our first all inclusive, but it will not be our last, we will be back to see everyone next year!

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"Gorgeous"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Theanne  on Dec 3, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Dec, 2011 | Leisure | Family and Kids
726 people found this review helpful

It was a beautiful resort with excellent food, outstanding staff, and breathtaking views. My sisters and I went to a Barcelo resort in Cancun 2 yrs ago and had a great time so was nervous about trying something different, but I can honestly say the resort and staff exceeded my expectations. They were friendlier and seemed to offer more activities. There was always something to do and you never got bored. Finally, the staff were always helpful and friendly. This resort offered 5 star quality for a 3 star price!

Room Number:
9118

Room Block:
villa 9

Arrival:
Tues 11/22/2011; while we waited to check-in drinks were provided which created a great opening for our first day.

Rooms:
We were originally assigned to Rm 3229 but the view was to a service alley and staff (Victor) immediately assisted us by providing a room with a pool view. We were very grateful.

Restaurants and Bars:
Bars everywhere you looked with fantastic service. Restaurants throughot - Buffet was excellent so never felt the need to attend the sit down restaurants.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Gorgeous beach and grounds. words can't describe. Pics on website do not give it justice.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Aerobics classes; volleyball; silly games during the day at the pool and beach. Nighttime entertainment was fantastic; I was really surprised by the quality of shows - very talented shows.

Other Comments:
I would recommend this resort to anyone.

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"An OK resort... not disappointed, not wowed."

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Nova Scotia  on May 5, 2011  >  4 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2011 | Leisure | Family and Kids
941 people found this review helpful

We've traveled to AI's seven times now and this resort would fall in the top 4 of those. It seemed to have everything you would look for, but it was just missing that little something. Dunno, can't quite put my finger on it. It certainly wasn't the staff, they rocked, I mean they would do anything for you and they worked really hard and quickly. I'll keep writing to see if I can uncover what it is.

Room Block:
Villa 4

Arrival:
Arrived at the resort around midnight on a full bus. Two people on the desk, took about a half hour to check in. Pick up your towel cards and room key. Trolley took bags to room.

Rooms:
We were on the third floor, we had requested second floor but when everything works in the room we don't push our luck. ;) The rooms use key cards which oftentimes fail, forcing you to go to the front desk for a fix. Gets annoying after 3 or 4 times. Good sized rooms with a pull out couch. Sliding doors to a balcony with a couple of chairs and a table. Fridge was stocked with water, pop(pepsi, diet pepsi and seven-up) and a couple of Presidente. The maid (who was a real sweetheart, by the way) stocks the pop and water, a beer guy delivers beer (appropriately enough)... if you aren't there, or the maid is not there, you get no beer restock. I left maid a note one day asking about beer, she took it but left no answer... with my spanish knowledge though, for all I know I may have asked her if her cat liked cervesa.

There is a safe with a number lock system, an iron and board. Hidden behind the ironing board is an umbrella (good to know!)... the only thing we used was the safe - it didn't rain and our clothes stayed wrinkled (we're on vacation!!).

The washroom is well equipped with two sinks, dental kit, soaps, shampoos, mouthwash, bath gels, sewing kits and shoeshine stuff (kept my toenails nice and shiny ;) ). The hair dryer is modern and functions well. The little toothpaste things were so cute we just had to take one home.

There is a large jacuzzi type tub. On the one night we tried it out, only one of the jets worked and the wife hogged it. The tub has a half glass door which if you aren't careful can result in a raft of water on the floor while showering. Water pressure and temperature was sometimes an issue but of course is related to the time of day and the number of users at that time.

The beds were comfortable but the pillows were like slate... thin and hard.

Noise from next rooms was not really an issue but the racket that can come from the halls can be quite loud at times.

Overall, the rooms were quite acceptable.

Restaurants and Bars:
Bar service was outstanding at all locations as was the service at the restaurants, in fact maybe the best we've experienced in our 7 AI trips.

Drinks were premium brands and mixed relatively weak unless you ask for stronger. Lobby bar made the best drinks and was a nice relaxing atmosphere... until they started with the music. Why must it be so loud? Can't it just be background music? And for gawds sake, there is only one Celine Dion out there, do not try to sing her stuff!! ;)

We ate at the buffet, the Italian restaurant(twice), the Mexican restaurant, the steak joint and Route 66 (twice). Not much to say here really, food was quite edible at all locations and there was enough selection for the pickiest eaters. Well, maybe a couple of things... 1) folks raved about the steak joint... er, I didn't get it, grilled meat and baked potatoes, no big whoop. 2)I loved the atmosphere and the light fare at Rte 66, but really they need to investigate the smell in there, kinda moldy. 3) Dress codes were either not in effect or not enforced and 4) No reservations needed (except for the steak joint) and walk up waits were quite short.

Not the best food we have had on vacations south, but very passable.

I cannot say enough about the brilliance behind having a person apply hand sanitizer at the doors of the buffets. There are a lot of travelers out there who simply do not wash their hands and rub their grime on utensils in the buffet. Thanks you Ocean Blue for keeping my tummy free of any troubles.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach is Bavaro Beach... what else can you say? Um... while quite functional, the four poster huts with the canvas tops are kind of trashy looking, let alone the fact that there is just way too much wood to bang your head on... again and again. Just a personal preference, but I like the tropical look of the traditional palm branch palapas.

There are two pools each with it's own bar. Water is cooler in the morning and really heats up in the afternoon... wonder why? The sun of course.

There is a daily handout at the breakfast buffet. The paper outlines the days activities and includes a note that basically says that saving chairs and spots at the pools and beach is prohibited. Er... a lot of people must not be able to read because chair and spot saving is the worst I have ever seen. Nuff said.

Grounds are quite well kept but some areas in the courtyards are showing wear, nothing to really detract from your stay, but if left in a state of disrepair eventually will look dumpy.

There is a trolley that makes it's way around the resort to pick up weary walkers... sometimes I wished there were two trolleys running.



Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Kids did some tubing. They also tried to get on the rock wall, but alas it wasn't manned the entire week we were there, despite being listed on the daily time schedule.

We took in a couple of shows. The circus show which while sometimes cheesy, still managed to wow me at the end. We also took in a dance show but it got repetitive and dull really quickly, and we usually enjoy these things. Again with the really loud music! Now, just as an aside and to demonstrate that it was not just me who thought that way, my 19 yr old son found it way too loud as well.

There are lots of opportunities for excursions or rides offered on the beach by vendors, who by the way are not aggressive, we didn't partake in any of them however.

We checked out the shops a few times down the beach a little. Want to avoid the aggressive guys on the beach? Enter the first shop and walk along the backside of the shops. The workers back there are much less aggressive and have been known to be asleep. There are a couple of shop owners who are really nice and fair guys, I was actually quite impressed.

There was lots to do on the resort - movies, kids discos, adult discos, bowling, but really by the time we did the beach, the pool, dinner and an hour or so at the lobby bar, we were pretty much wiped.

Other Comments:
Well, that barely touches on our experience and I can't explain it but I just don't have that "I wanna go back" feeling that I have had at other resorts. I'm a beach person and those huts were tacky, and the whole mini-mall feel of the main court was kind of trashy. Don't we go to the Caribbean to get away from that? There's an old Trooper song that plays in my head when I think back on it... a three dressed up as a nine. Don't get me wrong, for the right price you will be definitely be pleased. There's really nothing of any significance to complain about here, I had a good vacation, it just didn't do it for me.

I hate to end on a negative note, it's an OK spot, I doubt you'll be disappointed... but maybe not wowed.

Feel free to email me (tomaz61@yahoo.ca) for questions, or to tear a strip off of me if you're a huge fan of this resort. ;)

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