Ocean Blue and Sand Reviews


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Ocean Blue and Sand  

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

"o jokes, this is paradise on earth!!"
Posted by: penny on Sep 10, 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 45 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 45 reviews
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"OKAY place, but probably would NOT return"

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

Posted by:  karen  on Feb 26, 2010  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
256 people found this review helpful


Your Arrival:
Arrived half an hour early, but while being "shuttled" to our resort, there were SIX hotels for "drop-offs" ... we were of course the 6TH one. Check-in went smoothly, with the exception of rooms not being ready till 3. Still get a kick out of the $10 tourist card.... don't see the point of it, love the fact the little band actually KICKS the tip basket towards you, as you are walking by, and fighting off the guys trying to carry your luggage for you, for tips is also a joy.

Rooms:
Rooms are okay, low pressure in the shower, not much hot water, but honestly, I have pretty much grown to expect that in the D.R. Room was also very cool... and try as we could, the A/C for some reason could not be adjusted. Maid was a no-show ...twice... we had gone to our room one day at 3, and another day at 4. She comes and grabs the towels, but does not replace them until the room is clean. I don't really care about an un-made bed, but a shower after a day at the beach/pool is much appreciated, and waiting for towels is a pain, had to call TWICE the one day to get them, and they arrived at 6!

Restaurants and Bars:
Italian rest; very good, Dominican; also very good. Buffet no problems.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach and pool both very well maintained, as were the grounds. Word of caution though .... some of the flooring/tiles.. can be VERY slippery when wet!!!

Other Comments:
Nice place, just too spread out for my liking. You either walk A LOT or wait for a shuttle. It's also a place where one must be very patient.....SOME of the bartenders are not the quickest, and the week we were there, the rudeness and the lack of manners of the guests were overwhelming....there seemed to be a lacking of "please and thank you's" and an ABUNDANCE of cutting into lines, or cutting in at the bar.

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"Would return anytime"

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

Posted by:  Erin  on Feb 21, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
278 people found this review helpful

This was our first family all inclusive trip. We were a little worried about being in a different country and so far away from home. There was myself my husband and my 18yr son and 13yr daughter. It was a great thing and would love to return..... I think we will be returning next Feb with some friends.

Your Arrival:
We started off on a bad note... we arrived at 4pm on a Sunday and our room was NOT ready yet. They had are bags stay with the bell hop and told us where to go for some food and drinks and to come back in an hour or so, we needed to return to the front for or greeting info session at 5:30. When we returned our room still wasn't ready.... so we went to the info/welcome session, juring that session the front desk clerk came over spoke with my husband, told him there was a problem with our room and gave us another room.... a delux suit! They also had the bell boys take all our bags and stuff to the room so when we were finished it would all be there.....I think we made out good!

Rooms:
We were given a deluxe suit in Villa 6, two queen beds and a sleeper sofa, 3rd floor no elevator, we're young. we were on the back side so the veiw was another resort but, we really didn't spend alot of time in the room. We were rright by the stairs and as soon as we came down them, straight ahead was the loud party pool or a quick right and we were on the beach.

Restaurants and Bars:
The staff were a little slow and serving you drinks, if you got any at all. We fonf that if we just stop at the bar on our way in and get our own drinks for dinner or lunch,. Breakfast there was all kinds of drinks at the buffet and lots of waiters with coffee. Food was great! I was very impressed with the verity avalible, everything from steak, pasta, salad, fruit, you name it you could find it. Each night at the main buffet was theam nighs so each night was different.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The pools and beach were so clean and tidy. the grounds were well kept.... it was the people who were there on vacation that made things a mess...but the stuff were cleaning every day and all night long to have things clean and nice for the morning.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The shows were amazing, the staff were so friendly and loved to get everyone involed. My husban was pulled on stag and made to dance in front of everyone, he did a great job, as he is so shy...he won a t-shirt. As for off the resort you have to do the outback safari, and the viva colonial!

Other Comments:
This hotel is really Ocean Sand & Blue. It is the same hotel!!

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"Very, very happy with this resort!"

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

Posted by:  Kristin  on Feb 18, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
331 people found this review helpful

My husband and I along with an other couple from Minnesota stayed at the Ocean Blue from Feb 6 - Feb 13 (Sat - Sat).
Our little group vacations somewhere warm every winter and has been doing so for the past 8 years. This was our 4th trip to the DR, 2nd time to Punta Cana. When we fly to the DR we are never given any paperwork on the plane, we usually pay our $10 entry fee once we get to the airport and then there's some paperwork to fill out while there....not this time. It was different: We paid the $10 then got our passport stamped then off to our luggage and outside for our ride. No paperwork, did we miss a step?!!! On the way home, we had some paperwork to fill out at the airport, we didn't have to pay the $20 and other than the lines being very long, it didn't seem like we were missing anything.
I have been reading reviews for a half a year getting ready for this vacation (I always do). This was our best resort trip yet!

Your Arrival:
Easy check in - we were given cool, damp face cloths + a tray of punch was delivered.
We were given a welcome brochure w/map along with our keys and towel cards...the man at the front desk was friendly too. No credit card was asked for, nor did we run into any timeshare people.
We left our bags and our room # with bell men to be delivered later and we grabbed a beer (Presidente) at the lobby bar for the walk to our room.

Rooms:
We were on the right side, villa 4 on the top floor (3 floors max, no higher than the palm trees) #4301, king bed, view of the quiet pool and we could see the ocean a bit...loved our room! Our friends were checked into the Ocean Sand side on the left...doesn't matter, two names, same resort.

Room was very clean and spacious. Our fridge stocked with Pepsi, 7 Up, bottled water and 2 Presidente beers. The maid was near by, so as we were waiting for our bags we asked her for some more beer and tipped her a couple bucks...she was more than happy to stock our fridge for us.
We never had a problem with water or anything. Actually, we couldn't fault the place at all, this has been the nicest resort we've ever stayed at. I have been reading such good reviews that I almost couldn't believe them, but they were right. The employees couldn't be nicer! I'm still in awe about that! A "Hola" and a smile will get you everywhere.

Restaurants and Bars:
In the welcome brochure you will see the restaurants and the times they open. Also, which ones require men to wear long pants ("casual" for long pants and "sport" for shorts), along with a lot more info. The restaurants open at 6:30 and you don't need reservations...just walk on in.
We ate at the:
Italian - (casual) Great food, try the lasagna. Service a little slow but, we're in no hurry.
Dominican 'La Casa' - (casual) I loved the garlic shrimp!
Mexican - (sport) I had the tacos and the fish tacos were my favorite.
Caribbean, down by the beach - (sport) The beef fillet was very good!
Buffet - (sport) My husband loved the made to order omelets for breakfast, he had one every day. I loved the smoothies. The service here was better than any other buffet at any of the other resorts we have been to. (For lunch, they won't let you in if you're damp/wet because of the cushioned chairs - use the beach buffet). Also the food was very good everywhere, I gained weight.
Mikes coffee shop was also very good!.
Lobby bar - nice to hang out at after dinner and listen to music and dance. Great drinks and service! Some days they had Mojitos and they were good! They don't skimp on the booze either... We met so many nice people here!

Overtime sports bar - We really liked this place! We would come here after a few drinks at the lobby bar. They had snacks and we thought the beer was colder here too.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Free WiFi in the lobby.
It's also quite a walk from the lobby to the beach, I at least got in some exercise walking. There is a trolley that will take you around the resort as well and we used it.
Grounds: Beautiful, well kept. There was always people working hard there.
Pools: 2 large pools, both with a swim up bar. The one closer to the ocean has activities and the other is more quiet...wonderful pools and great swim up service!
Beach: Well, let's just say you won't be disappointed, the beach is the best. The ocean can be a bit wavy (depending on the weather), but not as wavy as Barcelo Premium's waves up on the northern part of Punta Cana's beach where we stayed 3 years ago. The ocean floor is all sandy on the bottom, I have 'sissy' feet and hate to step on anything other than sand, no problem here! As for beach chairs: Yes, you will have to get down there early to reserve a shaded spot (7 - 8am?). We never got there until 10:30 or later and always found some chairs in the sun, which I prefer anyways.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Shops: There is a cigar shop, a Harrison's high end jewelry store and There is a souvenir shop with a bunch of t-shirts, flip flops, sunblock, necessities and trinkets, along with some nice jewelery & luggage... near the lobby. I found my silver bracelet at the souvenir shop, I was in search of one. I would come back every other day to see if it was still there. The jewelery salesman quoted me $110 US the first day and on the last day he said $155. I got him back down to $110...even though I didn't want to spend that much, I really wanted it. So he will negotiate some.
The shops on the beach or "Shacks Fifth Avenue" didn't have the real silver I was looking for but they weren't as aggressive as I thought they would be. So, we shopped there a couple times as it was so convenient being next to our resort and cheaper than the resort store...it was cheaper buying your t-shirts and things at the shacks on the beach.
On Tuesday & Friday evenings there were vendors that set up their booths on site between the lobby and the restaurants. They were more aggressive, but as long as we just stopped to look, tell them they didn't have what I was looking for, with a "gracias" we left...but, we stopped at every booth along the way looking and saying the same thing because, we couldn't get by with just stopping at one booth, they would say it wasn't fair. On Friday I purchased a pretty necklace from the first vendor we came upon. I pointed it out, he took me to a table to describe each stone, used his lighter to show me it wasn't plastic or something and quoted me $68 US. I said that was way too much and he came down to $52, then $40...stopped at $40. I said I only had $25 and he came down to $30. When I acted like I was going to get up and leave, he said OK to $25.
Entertainment: Aside from the music at the lobby bar, and the activities on the beach which I enjoyed watching, we saw three shows at the theater. The Circus show - good, Magic show - very good and the Michael Jackson show - totally awesome! I wanted to see it again and I didn't see a show after that one (on Tuesday nt) because in my humble opinion, this show couldn't be beat. We got a front row early for this as I heard good things about it and our group wasn't disappointed.
Excursion: I wanted a half day catamaran tour. At the beach hut (where you get your towels and free toys) they also had excursions to purchase. We did the Viva Colonial Catamaran, 3.5 hours, $49US per person (they said it was a "special"). It left right from our beach and was a great trip! It included a cruise down the shore line, one snorkeling stop, an hour stop at the natural pool (which was a sandy, shallow area to swim in holding your rum drinks), music & dancing, more rum drinks or beer and a trip back up the coast line back to our resort. They also take pictures of you during the trip and we can see them on line at their site for free...they might require a payment to download, I'm not sure.

Other Comments:
We all loved this resort and Punta Cana...I know there are parts of the trip I'm forgetting but, I would just like to post this now and answer any questions ...fee free to message me!
If I could give some tips: We had a direct flight to Punta Cana from Minneapolis...on the way home our flight was over loaded and they had to take off 60 pieces of luggage. Not that big of a deal on the way home because they will deliver ours to our home (they were delivered 4 days later) and I don't have anything of real importance in there...just vacation things. BUT if this would have happened on the way to PC, it would have made a big difference. It just makes me think, what will I pack in my carry-on next trip?
Thanks for reading, I hope I helped.
Kristi

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"Clean and Beautiful Family Resort"

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

Posted by:  Melanie  on Feb 6, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
257 people found this review helpful

Your Arrival:
our arrival was handled quickly and efficiently, we got into our rooms immediately and they were clean and well appointed.

Rooms:
rooms were very spacious and well appointed. They were clean and in good repair. Our kingsize bed was very comfortable, and the overhead fan made sleeping easy! Our poolside view was really nice and we often would have late afternoon coffee on our balcony.

Restaurants and Bars:
We found all the restaurants clean, and easy to get into. The food was excellent, portion size good, and the menu interesting. The bars were typical resort bars...drinks left a little bit to be desired, but then again they are making drinks for hundreds everyday and not on Canadian standards...couldnt find a good "caeser" anywhere!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Pools, beaches and grounds were kept extrememly clean and tidy! Absolutley beautiful. And I appreciated the fact that you could easily walk anywhere you needed to go too...not to spread out.

Other Comments:
We really enjoyed our stay at Ocean Sands. It was more than I expected and the price was the best I have found yet! It is clean, beautiful, smaller, very friendly staff and the beaches exceptionally beautiful. I defintiely would recommend it to anyone at all. A great family resort if you are bringing chidren, there were lots there but we didnt notice that they were a bother to anyone.

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"The upgrated rooms looked way more cleaner, more cozy."

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

Posted by:  Patrycja  on Jan 10, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Oct, 2009 | Leisure | Family and Kids
263 people found this review helpful

Over all I really like this resort, and I would come back again and also recommend it to everyone.
The people that work there are nice, some may be a bit cold at first but they do warm up once you get to know them.
One of the things that I did not like was that there are time share people in the reception area, so as soon as you check in someone comes up and offers you a free dinner or a credit toward any activities out side of the hotel. They may tell you that you have to attend a meeting. The meeting is just for them to try to sell you time share, they will keep you for hours. If you are not interested just say noooooooooo thank you. We said no a couple of times and they left us alone.
On the beach,( there are vendors, they have their shacks set up, they are very pushy and rude ( not all of them, but most of them). They mark up their items a lot. They will try to sell you a necklace for $20 or $30, you will be able to get the same one at home for $5/$10. If you tell them that you are not interested they will lower their prices. A friend of mine was quoted $35 for a necklace, she said no thanks, and the guy sold her 3 for $5.
Twice a week on Mondays and Fridays the hotel lets local vendors set up tables in the resort to sell their merchandise, once agin they are very pushy.
If you want to buy cigars I recommend to buy them either from the hotel cigar shop or during mondays and fridays there will be a guy with just cigars set up in the main lobby by the bar, his are real he should charge you around $5/$6 per cigar.
I was told that the vendors in town are just as bad. If you want souvenirs, I would recommend to get up early before 7am and head to the beach, if you go early just a few vendors will be open and you can shop with out stress. There is a gift shop but the prices are high, you can get anything you need.
Bring lots of sunscreen and aloe vera, otherwise you will be paying $15 or more per bottle.
There is a photographer in the resort, you can book a professional photo shoot, or get your picture taken with different animals. $15/per picture with an animal
My boyfriend and I got our pictures taken on the beach, we got a disk with 15 pictures, 7 prints for $150. It was worth it.

Rooms::
The room that my family and I had was ok, very simple, nothing special. The bathroom was very old, the tub looked dirty but it was just old, it needed to be replaced. If we had the money we would have upgrated to a better room. The upgrated rooms looked way more cleaner, more cozy.

Restaurants and Bars::
The food was great, so many restaurants to choose from. Everyone at the resort works so hard. The food tasted great and it was presented very nicely. The buffet was moved to different location almost everyday ( by the pool, on the beach, in the theatre).

Beach/Pools/Grounds::
I came to the resort for the beach, ocean and the sun. The resort is very big, there is something for everyone. My family and I went parasailing, it was great, worth it. There are lots of tours, but they are pretty $$$$$. A lot of them will be around $90/person. We went swimming with the sharks, it was great to see them up close, but it was very sad to see how they kept them.

Other Comments::
THERE ARE A LOT OF STRAY DOGS IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC. Curently there are no animal shelters or rescues based in Punta Cana. SO I ask all of you going there please when you see any dogs please feed them and give them water, and if you can provide them with medical help if needed that would be great. If you do feed them, please make sure that they DO NOT FOLLOW YOU INTO THE RESORT becasue if they do they get PUNISHED.
As soon as I got back from Punta Cana, I have started a charity called BELLA ANIMAL RESCUE, to help the dogs in Punta Cana and the near by cities.
First project is to rescue 8 dogs that live on the beach right by Ocean Blue Resort, becasue I have seen them get abused and some of them are in bad shape.

Second project is to set up a week or 2 week long spay and neuter clinic.
If you are interested in helping please contact Patrycja at hockeyprincess34@hotmail.com (website will be ready in Feb or March 2010) Thank you everyone You can also contact me by email if you have any questions about the resort.

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"Golf next door at white sands is a waste of time"

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

Posted by:  George from Newmarket Ontario  on Jan 6, 2010  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Nov, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
253 people found this review helpful

Room was well looked after and clean.Security was good as each room had a safe at no charge and patio doors had proper locking pin.Ilike feather pillows so bring one if your picky.

Rooms:
REstaurants were good and never got tired of the food.Loved the theme restaurants and mikes coffee shop .Also never got ill or sick from food or drinks.

Restaurants and Bars:
Great pools clean and bars as they serve premium drinks not cheap resort booze.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beaches were great and clean no mosquitos.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
GOLF next door at white sands is a waste of time as it is not maintained and in bad condition.It is the worst course i have ever played on.Do not let this influence your stay here.Great courses nearby .Good shows at night.

Other Comments:
Bring usd as they rip you off on canadian exchange rates(.79 to us dollar)Pay in cash or travellers chqs. On your return duty free terminal 2 gate 6 has good deals on booze opposed to the other stores.Example corvosier xo $75.Also dont let the workers fool you that they make only 100 dollars a month ,really like 350-400.Overall you will like the resort and feel safe.GOOD for the family.

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"I was very dissatisfied."

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

Posted by:  Donna from Mount Laurel, N J  on Sep 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Sep, 2009
227 people found this review helpful

Arrival: September 18th to 25th, 2009
Our flight was changed to 10:15 with a stop in Baltimore. This made us lose a whole day. By the time all the others were dropped off at their hotels we didn't get to ours until 4:30.

Rooms:
Furniture needed to be updated due to knicks on all. Bathroom caulking around the tubs were a mess. Fixtures in the bathrooms falling off the walls. Musty smell in the rooms were disgusting. Airconditioning not working properly.

Restaurants and Bars:
Restaurants were hot. Food was good. Desserts were not all that great. Drinks at the bars were good.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beaches were nice as were the pools and the grounds around them.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Went on a Catamaran trip which was very enjoyable. My husband went on a snorkeling excursion which he enjoyed.

Other Comments:
This hotel when viewing online looks great. However, for being 4 years old is really beat. The furniture is old, the repairs that were made looked like a child did it. For example the caulking around the tub was a mess. I was very dissatisfied.

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"Ocean Blue and Sands was great"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Jit from Atlanta  on Aug 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Aug, 2009
246 people found this review helpful

As I read the reviews on Debbies Dominican Travel page before heading on my trip to Ocean Blue and Sands, I thought I’d offer my experiences for the next traveler.

My wife and I booked our room thru RCI exchange – so paid the $189 exchange fee and then for the all inclusive for my wife and I. That was $73/person/day, so just over $1000 for the week (Sat to Sat). We found out later that folks who booked thru Apple Vacations got better rooms for about $1400/person in total for the week, from Chicago. As we used Frequent Flyer miles, we went the route we did, as total $ was less.

The day before our trip, I called the hotel to confirm our reservation, and also inquired about transportation to the hotel. They don’t have shuttle service, but they booked a cab for me with my name on it. I think it was one of the wisest decisions. Upon passing customs, I was easily able to avoid the ruckus @ the airport, with the hawkers, etc. Cab cost $40, plus I tipped $3. I’ll be taking a cab back to the airport at the end of trip as well. Folks thru Apple or other had either free bus transfers or for a nominal fee ($20 RT for 2).

Airport, they make each person pay $10 to enter the country. You get a travel card for your $10, and you’d think you’d get to keep that as a souvenir. But no – you have to return it like 30 feet later. Free money for them. They did have live musicians playing for tips @ the airport as well.

Check-in::
Around 3pm on any given day is probably one of the worst times to check in as that’s the time that rooms are avail generally. We wound up waiting for ½ hr on line, then after getting to an agent, we were told, as we were RCI members, that our check-in was across the hall. That check-in facility was about a 5 min wait. And nice air conditioning, free internet just there, top shelf alcohol (Johnny Walker Black, Baileys). Found out later that premium service is for Privileged members only (and all RCI folks just checking in), so take advantage during checkin. Also, as a member of RCI, they give you 1 dinner (for 2) at one of the non-all inclusive restaurants for 1 night. I thought that was cool – as I felt entitled to all access @ $146/day for food/drinks!

As RCI members, they target you for their H10 premium VIP service – time share. I could write about what the offer was, but felt I would present a biased opinion. We opted not to buy in as it wasn’t for us. As a gift for listening to their 90 min presentation, they gave us 3 choices – a couples massage (value $110), a gift basket of Dominican goods, or $100 credit for excursions. I chose the latter, but as I hadn’t booked anything yet, they wound up just given me a $100 bill.

Staff:
I found them all really friendly, and engaging. From front desk, to guest services, maitre de, bar staff, housekeeping, etc. Really nice folks.

Rooms:
When I booked thru RCI, it came as a reservation of a hotel room. But when you look at the website, it only has junior, deluxe, etc suites. BTW, you *NEED* to print out the RCI confirmation email and give to check-in person. When I showed up to check-in, they said that the ‘hotel room’ was actually a junior suite, and as an RCI member, they automatically upgraded us to a deluxe suite. It’s really just a nice sized hotel room – ours was 2 double beds, and had a Jacuzzi, and a small sofa. Lots of space for 2 people. Room amnesties come w/ a comb, unlimited free bottle water, etc; of course, I forgot my toothbrush. They did finally get me a toothbrush, but it took several calls, they said they didn’t have one, then later said that they did, etc – but @ the end, I finally did get one. Backup plan was to buy one at the onsite gift shop. Villa 10 is where all the “Privileged” folks stay, so if you can score a room there, that’s would rock. Villa 6 is next to the Ocean, so that’s also a good one. Also, you may want to request a ground floor room, as the 3 story floors don’t have elevators.

Restaurants::
Everyone asks, of all the restaurants, which is the best? I think it comes down to personal preference. We’ve met folks that swore by Mexican, others that swore that the Caribbean place, etc. For us, my favorites were: The Dominican Buffet at the El Carey restaurant, the Surf/Turf @ the El Bodegon, and the goat @ La Casa de mi Abuela. My wife loved El Bodegon first, and the Spinach main dish @ the Italian place best. Please note that some DO have dress codes – El Bodegon (steakhouse that’s not included in the all-inclusive), as well as 2 regular restaurants – La Casa de Mi Abuela (Dominican), and I Marcherati di Venezia. Dress code simply means shirts with sleeves (even short sleeves), Long pants, and closed shoes. We did see a few folks that had on shorts, so don’t know how strict they are. Restaurant menus do not change – we wished they had a weekly plan, but same menu every day. In general, we felt that the wait staff was quite slow. The Mexican restaurant tended to have a 15-40 min wait, and unfortunately, only reservations can be made at the 2 not-included restaurants. Our quoted 10-15 min wound up being 5 min, so that was cool.

La Casa de mi Abuela – the goat dish was delicious; so was the fish in garlic.

Bucareno (seafood by the beach, non included in AI) – the soup was okay, the crab/mango dish was delicious, and dinner – my oh my – the plates were huge!!! It was so sad that we couldn’t finish the food – all the seafood there is grilled; I had the Lobster and shrimp – and they gave like 4 lobster tails and many shrimp – I did the most damage I could, but couldn’t eat the last lobster tail. I think I like Maine lobster better than Caribbean lobster (disliked the lobster in Cancun when I was there a few years ago). My wife got the surf/turf – but as the lobster was cut in ½, full body, it was unappetizing to her, and I ate that ½, she barely made a dent in the other. The steak was a bit sweet- I’m an Outback steak kind of guy, so wasn’t for me.

Mexican – we weren’t impressed w/ the food. We get better Mexican back the states. The open appetizer bar was nice though. Fajitas were bland.

We did all our breakfasts/lunches at the El Carey restaurant – lots of choices in the buffet. Omelets were great, enjoyed eating Chorizo sausage every morning, as well as melon/watermelon/peach juice, and papaya, mango pieces (unfortunately, the mango pieces tended to be a bit on the tart side).
Bar service - a few of the other reviews seemed to suggest that the service was slow – I did not have that experience- they were as fast as they could be – and each and every station. They were friendly; some wanted to know your name, etc. I personally, was on a quest for Mojitos, and that was a bit hard to find – no bar offered it except the lobby bar, and they made it quite good (until they ran out of mint).

Pool/Beach::
Pool was lovely, you should consider bringing a towel and reserving a chair under an umbrella on your way to breakfast, so you have a spot to relax in. The beach, the waves were mild during the week, the sand was fantastic, the only con was that there was more seaweed than I would have liked.

Entertainment:
We went to the Showtime facility ever night – from Broadway type line dances 1 night to latino dancing another to magic show 1 night and a circus one night – they make an effort to entertain. We saw Grease one night, Copacabana one night. The 1 night we decided to bail due to all the MJ post-death info in the news (Michael Jackson show), we regret – we found out later that it was the best show they have, and the whole audience loved it. Bowling- they give us a voucher for just 1 free game (per person) - they punch a hole your wristband after you finish your free game. Extra bowling games are $15/game

Excursions:
I found that the guy in the hotel lobby offered rates a bit on the higher side. I wound up doing the Discover Scuba excursion – resort dive where they teach you how to use the gear, and go down to a wreck. The group I used to book was called Pelicano- they are PADI certified, and they have a facility on the resort site, on the beach, that they rent out from Ocean Blue. They were wonderful people to work with. As I loved to snorkel, I thought I’d try this once. They also offer a 1 week vacation cert course where after you get certified, you can go to any resort and dive. I had some challenges when I went to the ocean my time that I went there– my ears never quite equalized, but lots of folks had a great time. I’m going to stick to snorkeling in the future. One thing to note – the ocean to me felt choppy – several (not just a few) folks got seasick on each of my water excursions – but the staff and other guests said that those waters were like “Club Med” – meaning, that was normal for ocean. I guess I just wasn’t used to it. Just to the north of the resort on the beach , there’s another excursion company that was cheaper – for example, deep sea fishing @ the Ocean Lobby was list price $119, but was giving to me for $105; Pelicano’s rate was $99, and the rate for the stall is $75. I need to be sure to ask that they have 1 rod per person, let us use the rods (diff. rate to be just watching vs. actually fishing), etc. I still may pay the $99 b/c I liked the Pelicano staff, went on 1 excursion w/ them already, and if I get over the choppiness of the ocean water. http://www.pelicanosport.com
Alert: DO buy Dramamine to help reduce motion sickness – easier and cheaper to buy from the states; if you forget (as I did), you can buy them from the gift shop @ the resort - $5 for 10 pills.

Casino – on site casino is quite lame – I’m used to Vegas and AC, so it was disappointing to see just 2 Blackjack tables, several slots, roulette, and 3 card poker. But only a handful of folks are ever playing – easy to get a seat, most tables empty. Those that do play though lose money, as tourists don’t really know how to play BJ right. Staff were very friendly though. I heard from the staff that there was a bigger casino about 10 minutes away, called Princess Casino, that provides free shuttles back/forth - I went there one night, and it was a bit larger (just 1 large room), but not to the same scale as any Casino in the US. They did have 1 table for Texas Hold’em, and the rest of the games were the same.

After Hours::
Most of the teens go to the teen club (ends @ 1:30am nitely), and seem to have a good time. The adults go to the After Hour Sports Bar, and hang out, drink, play pool, and just chat it up with folks from all over the world. That closes @ 6am, and has wings, burgers, hot dogs, etc all nite. (only the wings looked really pallettable).

Internet – it’s only free WIFI in the lobby. You can buy 1 time access for 15 min for 4 hrs, or in your room for multiple access - $25 for 25 hrs (valid 6 days), or all week for $60 unlimited access. I thought about the $25, but wound up lugging the laptop to the lobby every other day just to check in w/ email. That was a big flop – the ‘free wi-fi’ was unfortunately down more often than not, and the times it was up, had to walk around to get the best signal strength (found it to be the OB2 connection next to the regular reception, where the tour travel desks are, across from the restrooms.)

Bugs: not really a problem – you’ll see a random mosquito, bee, or roach. I did get bitten a couple of times by mosquitos.

Weather: The forecast was for rain every day this week – however, it just rained in small splotches and stopped; rained a lot in the middle of the night, so didn’t impact us much.

On the trip, I met many folks that have come back a few times, saying this was one of the best resorts on the beach, so that was good to know. Will I come back? If I were to come back to DR, this would be definitely up there. I've also been to many places in the Caribbean thru several cruises and destination packages, and I would like to see some more new islands, before coming back. For example, I LOVED Costa Rica, would love to go back, but would like to check out Guatamala, etc, first. To sum it up, Ocean Blue and Sands was great, repeat travelers come back, and was a refreshing vacation.

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"The night life wasn't the most active but we still managed to have an amazing time!"

Ocean Blue and Sand
User Rating:  Ocean Blue and Sand Review: 4.5 of 5

Posted by:  Jennifer  on Jul 1, 2009  >  12 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jul, 2009
239 people found this review helpful

Arrival: May 2008
Had no problems...walking off the airplane and into the bus to take us to our resort.

Rooms:
Rooms were fine. No problems with them at all!

Restaurants and Bars:
All the restaurants we ate at were great! Didn't get sick once!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beautiful beach always able to find chairs to sit in the shade and we were a group of 6. Can't speak about the pool as we never went in it.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We did the catamaran tour to Saona island which was well worth the money...beautiful day on the water...doesn't get better than that!

Other Comments:
I would recommend this hotel to a friend however the night life wasn't the most active we still managed to have an amazing time!

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"Treated just like royalty."

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

Posted by:  Darlene from Maple Ridge, BC  on Jun 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jun, 2009
232 people found this review helpful

Arrival: April 19th -26th

Rooms:
We're totally immaculate - loved the whirl pool bathtub - we overlooked the pool, palm trees blowing in the wind. Left a little treat & $1. tip every day - she seemed to enjoy that. Washed floors and made beds every day. So much room.

Restaurants and Bars:
Marguerta was our favorite - so colourful - so much spirite - the appetizers were plentiful and so tasty - then the meals were presented - so much and so tasty. The LaBrasa (restaurant by the breach) was beautiful - we had lunches and suppers there - staff was so friendly - constantly filling our glasses and the chicken, lobster and beef dishes were beyond description - yummy yummy. We also enjoyed the buffett breakfasts - such variety and so tasty - the staff was always so pleasant and helpful.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The pools were so sparkly and clean and we never had to look for a chair - so plentiful even with all those people. The swim up bars you had to watch only because they put in too much booze!! The dirty monkey was my favorite and Al loved their "Prime" rums ( all you had to do was ask and you got it!) The beach well, what can I say - the water was so clean, crystal and inviting. They were constantly cleaning the sand - I never saw a sea weed or shell in sight and the sand just sifted thru your fingers. Again, never a problem in finding a lounge chair. The vendors were all at one end - and when you chose to shop - they were there but backed off when you said you were not interested. We found articles to be so reasonable - bartering didn't have to go too far. I was strange to have the sun set at 6:30, but by then yoiu were ready for a change of clothes and looked forward to the variety of restaurants and wonderful night life.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We went 4 x 4 ing which took us into the heart of the Punta Cana small off-beat towns. Poverty was evident yet the houses were delightfully painted a variety of colours, local art displayed, people always smiling as we drove by. The back roads were something else perfect for 4 x 4 ing.

Other Comments:
From the time we arrived until we departed we felt so blessed and treated just like royalty. Every one who worked there was always so "happy" so accommodating and it always came from the heart. I loved the "singing little rocks" that were placed through out gardens as you walked along - beautiful music - always appropriate for the time of day. We always felt safe - the only problem was - there wasn't enough time to enjoy the moments. We will go back.

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