The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Reviews

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The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa  

C/ El Cortecito, Playa Bávaro, Punta Cana

"A Great Experience....."
Posted by: Ruth (mra) & Dave  on Feb 20, 2013
see all reviews

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Reviews
The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Pictures and Information
The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Bavaro Beach Dominican Republic

#14
of 29 Hotels in Bavaro Beach

User rating 4.5

Based on 12 reviews

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Information


The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa is set in an exceptional spot right on the sea front of the well-known Bávaro beach. It is built on an enormous site next to the Grand Palladium Palace Resort Spa & Casino and Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa. The facility is surrounded by a coconut palm plantation and lush tropical vegetation.

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The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Reviews

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 4.5 of 5 12 reviews
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"A Great Experience....."

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  Ruth (mra) & Dave  on Feb 20, 2013  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2013 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
294 people found this review helpful

It is not often that we vacation in Punta Cana, because for us the area can be beyond our budget. But it has been said “when you find a price & place that fits your budget, book it”. That is exactly what we did for our 2013 winter vacation, although we ended up booking 6 ˝ months out.

Flight: Our travel arrangements were with Transat Vacations, departing from Toronto Airport. We chose Transat due to it’s pricing/early booking bonus, flight time & the availability of Club Class.
Departure was a humane 8:00am, which meant that we would get into Punta Cana just after 12:00noon & have time to relax and adjust in our “home away from home” for the next 2 weeks. We had an excellent flight, enjoying all that was available to us in Club Class…wider seats, lots of leg room, hot meal, champagne & orange juice, individual viewing screens with a selection of music, movies & sports & lots of attention by the Flight Crew. Immigration paperwork & Tourist Cards were passed out on the flight & we had plenty of time to get them ready for landing.

Airport Arrival: A pleasant flight found us arriving at PUJ Airport at 12:53pm. We were off the plane & walking into the Arrivals area within a matter of minutes. D.R. Immigration and luggage unloading was quick and we were outside looking for our transfer bus inside of 30minutes. We were on the smaller of 2 buses & arrived at our resort by 2:30pm.

Arrival:
Resort Arrival: This was a very disorganized ordeal. There were only 2 staff members on the Reception Desk to look after the group that arrived. After waiting in line for 20 minutes, we were given our bracelets, an information packet & then told to come back in 30 minutes…no room was ready for us. After changing into more comfortable attire & ordering a drink from the bar, we went back to Reception a few more times, still, with no room available for us. Finally, 2 ˝ hours after arrival we have a room….and a room upgrade! Our original booking was a “Deluxe Imperial Garden View” & our upgrade was a Junior Suite with Garden View.
We are driven to our room & a very capable Porter handles our luggage. Our room is beautiful, but we need to get lights working first. Our Porter goes back & forth to Reception for us to get the proper card for the “wall reader”, but for some odd reason nothing seems to work. He finally has Maintenance come and in a short time, the proper card is found, inserted and we have lights !!

Rooms:
Rooms:As I mentioned, our room was upgraded to a new renovated Junior Suite. We are in Villa 18…a building that holds 8 rooms. We’re on the second floor, room # 1185 & our balcony faces the inner garden area. According to the resort map, we’re not far from the beach & the pool, about a 5 minute walk to the beach & 5 minute stroll back to the main Lobby & Reception. Our room consisted of a full King-size bed with 2 bedside tables, a pullout couch for additional sleeping space if needed. A credenza held a mini bar, with 2 pull out drawers for coffee supplies & an ice bucket and on top of the credenza was a new flat screen tv. To the left of the credenza was a desk with I-pod docking station & coffee maker. There is a full wall of wardrobe space, but unfortunately the wardrobe didn’t have enough drawers or shelf space for your clothing. Hangers were available, but I brought extras with me to supplement. Iron & ironing board were stored in the wardrobe, and robes & slippers were available for use too. Two things that I liked about the wardrobe space…1) under the lowest shelf, there was space big enough to store your suitcase, so it was out of the way for the duration & 2) the safe was located in the wardrobe, at the right height so that you weren’t a contortionist when you used it AND it was electronic !! (cost of the safe was included in our room package). The bathroom was roomy…a deep Jacuzzi tub, a glassed in stand-alone shower stall, & enough counter space around the sink to hold our essentials. Also provided & replenished daily was a basket of shampoos, lotions & shower gels. We had no problem with water pressure or hot water for the shower, but had to be careful on where the shower head was positioned, as water could leak out and puddle on the floor, causing a hazard if not noticed. The bed was comfortable, but the pillows were something to be desired ! We knew this before arriving & each brought a pillow of our own, as we were not about to pay for pillow selection!!
The mini bar holds water, pop & beer and is replenished daily. We left a tip and note for the “water guy” requesting the amount of water needed and we never ran dry that is for sure !!
Our maid did a fantastic job with our room, although it was almost 3:30/4:00pm in the afternoon before our room was made up. A couple of times we came back early, only to sit on the balcony when she was ready to tidy up. Rosa made towel sculptures for us a few times & our maid in the evening, when doing the “evening turn down ser

Restaurants and Bars:
Food/Restaurants: We had no problem with food during our 2-week stay. There was always something to tempt the taste buds & keep the pangs of hunger at bay. Theme nights kept things interesting: Sunday: American; Monday: Mexican; Tuesday: Oriental; Wednesday: Italian; Thursday: Dominican; Friday: Gala; & Saturday: Spanish.
The main dining room was open in the morning for breakfast from 7am – 10am & had a wide variety of foods….eggs, pancakes, French toast, fruit, breads, meats, smoothies, juices, cheese, cereal…anything your heart desired, it was available. For those who are bacon lovers, there was no shortage of bacon in the mornings !! The dining room was closed at lunch & the beach restaurant La Arrecife was open from 12:00-4pm. At times, this restaurant was very busy & you had to lineup just to get seated at a table! The wait-staff really hustled in order to keep tables cleaned & set & serve the hungry beach goers! Food was plentiful…hot was hot, cold was cold, all so delicious. We had the opportunity to eat at the beach/poolside restaurants of the GPPunta Cana & the The Palace & I think our favourite place to be was la Behique Restaurant in the Punta Cana section.
There were 5 restaurants & 8 a la carte restaurants available to us. We checked out 5 a la cartes (Mexican, Asian, Spanish, Japanese & Brazilian) & of these, our favourite was the Japanese.
The Palladium has a great system for marking tables, which other resorts should take into consideration. On the table is a card – green on one side for Vacant, & red on the other side for Occupied. As people went around the dining room seeking a table, if the red card was showing, there was no chance of someone else taking a table that you had picked out for yourself ! Also during the lunch hour, if you were eating at a poolside restaurant, your bathing suit must be covered & you had to be dry.

Evening Entertainment: We had the chance to see a few good shows in the Sunset Theatre, but our favourite entertainment was the pianist at Hemingway’s. Hemingway’s is open nightly 5pm to 12midnight, & is a great place to meet friends, play cards or sit and relax.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The Resort & Grounds: The Grand Palladium Bavaro is within a complex of 3 other resorts…the GPPunta Cana, GPPalace & The Royal Suites by Turquesa. When staying at the Palladium, you have the use of all the facilities at the other resorts EXCEPT the RST….you can visit, but not par-take. It is advised that upon your arrival, grab a map of the complex, a drink from the bar & hop on the “people mover train” for a leisurely ride around the resorts…that way you will have a better idea as to where everything is located. The gardens & grounds of the Bavaro section are fabulous…well groomed, lots of color and an abundance of flowers. There are quite a few “Lagos” or ponds in the garden areas, filled with fish, ducks, flowers, fountains & the odd Egret or two. The walkways are cobblestone & are sheltered with thatched roofs…keeps the sun and/or the rain at bay as you make your way to your Villa or to the Lobby. We found some areas at night, to be low lite, especially some of the short-cut paths that were between the Villas. It’s a good idea to carry a small LED flashlight with you…it sure comes in handy!

Pool: The pool was a nice area to be, but at the time of our stay, it didn’t seem to be overly busy. There were plenty of loungers & palapas around the pool area and while there, we didn’t see too much of “the towel game” being played. The swimup bar & the pool bar diverse clientele during the day time hours.

The Beach: This is one of the nicest sections of Bavaro beach & it’s walkable in both directions. There were plenty of loungers & palapas on the beach, along with palm trees along the edges making for a nice shady spot. The one main problem that I had with the beach area at the GPBavaro, is that there were no actual chairs available on the beach for sitting. Even the Bar Kiosks didn’t have seating available. For those who have problems getting in & out of a lounger, chairs would have been much better. So we were quite pleased to find a nice patio area at the GPPunta Cana, just across from the beach snack bar….tables & chairs in a lovely shaded area, that we could sit and watch all the activity on the beach, in the water & in the air!

Other Comments:
Going Home: As they say, “all good things must come to an end” and so it was with our vacation. Our return to the Airport was quick, with no stops at other resorts …our bus was full. The Departure area of Punta Cana Airport has changed quite a bit since the last time we used it & unfortunately we didn’t find any great deals at the Duty Free this time around. We had an excellent flight home to Toronto, getting in on time and having a chilly awakening to the return of winter weather.

A wonderful holiday in a beautiful part of Punta Cana. Would we recommend this resort? Definitely! Would we return to the Grand Palladium? If the price was right, yes!!

Lobby/Reception:
Lobby/Reception/Lobby Bar: A huge area that is a bee-hive of activity for all things: arrivals, departures, Orientation meetings, Tour Operators, computer desks, Library exchange, Guest Services, Palladium Travel Club & of course, the Lobby Bar. In the centre of the Lobby is a Lago/pond with 2 fountain type columns, 2 huge Coy fish and a group of turtles. In the evenings, a “live” dance band performs bringing excitement up a notch or two! The staff who work Reception speak reasonably good English, enough to get their point & message across…and if you can speak a little Spanish, they appreciate it very much. Just off the Lobby by the Bar is a lovely Courtyard, complete with tables & comfortable chairs and palapas big enough to keep you dry if it decides to rain! Directly across from the entrance to the main Lobby, are the shops & the Sports Bar. Prices foritems in the shops were not bad, & others were outrageous. The Sports Bar was a happening place…food available all day & night and the best place to get a “grilled chicken panini sandwich” ….so good ! Three (3) t.v.’s were mounted on the walls & could be watched from all angles of the room. A couple of pool tables were down at the back & seemed to be widely used.

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"The Grand Palladium Bavaro offers wide choices...."

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Jim,Jean,Don,Kay  on Dec 3, 2012  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2012 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
347 people found this review helpful

We travelled to the Grand Palladium Bavaro with another couple for our 15th Dominican visit together. This was our second Punta Cana visit and their first. We have been to may other DR locations together but usually pick Peurto Plata and area resorts. We flew from Toronto on Transat and had a great flight. Transat was great as usual. We have travelled with them many times. Punta Cana Airport was fast and efficient. The tour bus ride to the resort was good and takes just over 30 minutes.
Check in at the Palladium with our group of about 20 to 25 people was slooooow, unorganized. We arrived right on time - at about noon - but they were not expecting us??? We were hearded from the lobby to another room to be signed in and told no rooms until 3 p.m. They ran out of arm bands and we had to wait until they found more. We were finally directed to a buffet so we could eat. This was the most time consuming check in that we have had anywhere. Very frustrating even if you put yourself into DR time holiday mode. After lunch we did get our rooms - kind of. We had requested second floor rooms for both couples - well surprise neither of us got one. Usually we have been accomodated at other resorts. We had specified this on booking as well as sending an e-mail the week before. Truly disappointing customer service.

Room Number:
7110

Room Block:
7100

Arrival:
Very slow check in process. It appeared resort was far from full so it makes you wonder why such a problem with accomodating requests. Next morning Transat rep was a no show for the time specified for orientation. That too is a first - usually they are great and send a sub if unable to attend. He did eventually show up - but by that time we we out making the best of our time.

Rooms:
Despite being ground floor rooms they were nice rooms. Whirlpool tub was a nice centre piece to the room. They were clean and well kept. We had no bug problems but our friends did have roaches three times. It took into day three with trips and calls to the front desk to get a light repaired over our sink area. Again probably the worst service of any Dominican resort we have been to. The house keeping staff was excellent and had everything spotless. We always had towel sculptures and most nights they had turn down service with chocolates. Very nice. Fridge was always restocked after the first day when I did leave a note asking for "mas agua por favor" as they did forget. We did receive a complementery fruit basket, small bottle of rum and a figurine. The room safe is included with the package - nice touch. Lots of hot water and the air worked great.

Restaurants and Bars:
We started by eating the first day breakfast and lunch at the Bavaro buffet. We found service was bad and the staff sure did not look like they were having any fun. It was great not to need reservations at any of the 9 a-la-cartes. We ate at them six times. Japanese is a MUST - fabulous food - great showmanship. Wine was all bottled wine at all meals - very good. Bars were excellent. Brugal being the rum of choice. Drinks we always excellent!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Grounds were immaculate. Covered walkways provided good cover for those rainy nights or days to go from place to place under cover. Pools are good. Kids splash pool area one of the best we have seen. The beach is your typical Punta Cana sand - light coloured - beautiful clear water as well.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Nobody bothers you to participate in activities - they are there if you want - and that is what we prefer - others may look for more - individual preferences. We did not do any excursions as we have done them before and prefer R and R. We did not take in any shows but they are there. Lots to do if you want - actually have a great facility for everything. The kids castle is amazing for families with kids - even has zip lining for them and child care as well.

Other Comments:
Definately a resort we would recommend for all. Just beware of a few glitches - that can happen anywhwere. It would be good to see them up the variety on the buffets and snack areas but are quite acceptable at the level they are. If you book the Bavaro section be sure to use the other sections as they are MUCH BETTER. As long as you have full access to them then this is a good value. If you had to stay only at the Bavaro section I would not go back. If I had to choose Punta Cana or Peurto Plata my prferences definately lie with PEURTO PLATA...Salud!

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"A beautiful vacation"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  C  on Feb 26, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Feb, 2012 | Leisure | Family and Kids
669 people found this review helpful

This is the 3rd time for us at this hotel and we were not disappointed. The room we received was a suite and was lovely. The beach can not be beat--so beautiful. My only complaint is that at night in the lobby,the little band that plays music ,plays the same set of music every single night. At first it is enjoyable--they are good but then it becomes too annoying.

Room Number:
1448

Room Block:
44

Arrival:
Feb 16 to Feb 23,2012

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"Ok no exceptional."

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 3.0 of 5

Posted by:  David  on Jan 18, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jan, 2012 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
664 people found this review helpful

First off we did not get the room in our package. It should have had king bed instead of 2-doubles. 2nd - No hot water! in fact no water at all at times. Electricity was out in our room only for a period of time. Air conditioning did not work properly. Most of the staff was very friendly, food was average. Nice beaches, pools and grounds.

Room Number:
1127

Room Block:
12

Arrival:
12/01/12

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"A very nice experience"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Yvan  on Feb 24, 2011  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2011 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1042 people found this review helpful

This being our second visit to this resort, we were pleased to notice that it was just as rewarding as on our first visit. We visited for the first 2 wks of february and as usual during that period of the winter, no rain during the day, some nice downpours during the evening or night, however, this did us no harm as we were busy at our nightly activities.

Room Number:
1564

Room Block:
56

Arrival:
Despite some snow the day before our departure, after de-icing, we were 20 minutes late for our departure, we arrived PC 20 minutes late, very quick through the airport, we arrived our resort around 2:15pm, our check-in went very quickly and our room was ready on arrival.
The staff at the registry counter were very pleasant, spoke English, French to whoever needed help.

Rooms:
Being with Air Transat, we were given a deluxe room in block 5, upon entering the room, we were not satisfied with the set-up, we went back to the check-in counter to enquire about a jr suite and what would the upgrade cost, lucky as we were, we were told that if we could move within 30 minutes, it would be free to us, for being repeat customers.
Unfortunately as it may be, the room in block 43 was lovely but the A/C unit did not work very well and leaked on the floor making the situation hazardous, after 2 days, of trying to repair to no avail, we were offered to again move to another jr suite in block 56, this suite was excellent, everything went very nicely for the remainder of our 14 day stay.

Restaurants and Bars:
We did the Italian, the Japanese twice, the Gourmet, the Bamboo and El Arrecife twice during our stay, need I mention that all of them were excellent, the food was to our liking, the service very nice. We had absolutely nothing to complain about for all our visits to the a la carte restaurants. The reservation system worked very well, unfortunately, you can only book for 6-8 or 10pm, which is quite difficult for us North Americans used to eat before 8pm. My only complain would be that if you get to breakfast after 8:30am, the variety and quantity of dishes diminishes quite drasticly and they are in no hurry to replenish, of course being the busiest time of the morning for breakfast, the buffet is quite busy with patrons and tables are hard to find. The Green/Red markers on the tables is a very good method of keeping your table and well respected by other guests. The remainder of our late meals were taken at the various buffets which were quite good, with multiple choices of menus.Absolutely no complaints about the food or drinks on this resort. For a quick snack, the sports bar has superb choices and all excellent. After discovering Hemmingway's bar, our evenings were pretty well spent there in a quiet atmosphere with all sorts of International Liqueurs.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
What can I say about the PC beach, been there so many times before and still great to walk in either direction. The only draw-back is the towel play to reserve a hut, when we got there on the 3rd, around 7am the beach was empty and lots of place to choose from, by the time our second week rolled around, you had better be there by 6:30 otherwise, it would be a day in the full sun. Did not go to the pool except around 4pm for a couple drinks to close the afternoon. The beach bar closest to our position was manned by a bartender named Luiz, not very friendly and always expecting something in his right hand. If you were of spanish descent, service was the promptest, otherwise, hurry up and wait.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Did only one excursion, Bavaro Runners VIP with a lobster lunch, very poor experience, we were driven around for 3 hours with little or nothing to drink before the first bottle of water came out, the trip was way too long and the river cruise was on the Chavon River, almost at Bayahibe, to get there on the back of a 6 wheeler, with very uncomfortable seats, well, I will pass thank you, had we been informed that the cruise was so far away, I would not have purchased. We left at 8am and never returned before 7pm. An experience to forget.

Other Comments:
We noticed that the overall maintenance seems to be on the decline, as for all resorts, when the customer base is well established, everything seems to be taken for granted. All and all, Again we loved the place and would go back in a flash. A great place and hopefully it will stay that way.

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"Absolutly fantastic, best experience in the caribbean"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  Ernie  on Feb 11, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2011 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1011 people found this review helpful

Room Number:
1264

Room Block:
26

Arrival:
We had a late flight out of Toronto with canjet which went smoothly and right on time. Punta cana airport was very quiet which made for a speedy baggage collection and entrance to country. We had time for a quick smoke before the bus left the airport and the escort was very helpfull and humourous as well. It took us almost half an hour to arrive at palladium but was because we had numourous stops along the way at other resorts. I was first in line at check in and was impressed on how speedy things went, after only a couple minutes at the desk we were on a golf cart going to our room.

Rooms:
The deluxe room was very impressive , ground floor, king size bed , and only a min away from the beach, which was what i had requested. Rooms were very clean , with four large pillows on the bed, which conflicts with other reviews on here, they must have fixed it. Our fridge was the only thing wrong with the room , was not cold enough, but we left a note on the conceirge desk and it was fixed that day when we got back to room. A few days we had gone back to room , for a siesta in the afternoon, and to our amazement our bed had been made up again that same day. We would tip the maid each day and leave her stuff like colouring books , crayons, panty hose , nail pollish etc. Also left a dollar in the fridge a few times and got extra cervesa, as there is a seperate guy that fills the fridges. If we were in the room when they would come , they would give us extra towels, water , pop, beer , what ever we would ask for!! we were very immpressed and tipped them generously.

Restaurants and Bars:
Hemingways piano bar was very classy and impressive. Very quick freindly service and u could get a much better selection of many spirits. The sports bar was prob our favourite place to hang out , we made a point of tipping the cook there , and he would make us fresh wings when we wanted them , the way we wanted them , as most would just go to the hot display and help themselves. A couple dollars a day goes a long way in dominican in the right hands. We were there for superbowl sunday and they had set up another large screen outside for the game, and it was needed , it was totally packed that night , but the cook still came out right to us and asked if we wanted fresh wings. Wow , we felt important, which we were, we were one of a few tables cheering for the packers lol .

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Overall the hole resort was kept very clean and tidy , with maids cleaning posts , and others , sweeping walkways, and ground keepers raking and trimming trees of lose branches and coconuts. Bavaro beach has to be one of the nicest in the dominican. Very fine sand and a gentle slop into the water. The swim up bars were one of my fav places to hang out , although u could not smoke in the pool.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
There were many things u could do here for entertainment, pool sports, beach sports, excersize, we chose to mostly lay around and watch lol , We went horse back riding at el pat ranch, which was ok but the supervisor we payed claimed he had no change and they would fix us up at the ranch, anyway they didnt and wouldnt, and i tried to buy a bottle of rum from them at a discount because of it and they wounldnt do that either, anyway we got back to resort and i went to see the guy we had booked with and he tried to fix things but everytime he said to go somewhere to see supervisor , he could never be found, it was only 10 bucks , but it was the principle of it. I would highly recommend anyone to take the sanoma island catamaran trip, allthough its a ways away and it will fill up an entire day , it is well worth it. 99 dollars a person , with a great bbq lunch and all the rum and beer u want, u will dance on the catamaran, u have too lol.

Other Comments:
ive been to dom rep a few times now , and this has been the best resort experience ever. I would highly recomend this one to anyone, and would definatly go back to palladium again !!!!!! If you go here talk to Elwyn , hes the puplic relations guy ussually in the lobby, treat him right and he will make your experience in dom a treat.

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"Highly Recommended!"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  Emily  on Jan 21, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2011 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1040 people found this review helpful

Room Number:
1334

Room Block:
Villa 33

Arrival:
Flew with Air Transat. It was a long flight from Vancouver but went smoothly. We had to touch down in Puerto Plata to let some people off and after the quick switch, we were on our way. We arrived at the resort in the evening and check in was fast and efficient. Our bellboy took our luggage to our room and we settled in. Since we arrived so late, we went to the Sports Bar for a bite to eat.

Rooms:
We stayed in a Junior Suite which was great! Rooms are a little outdated and could use some new decor. The bed was not very comfortable and when the fitted sheet came off, I noticed that the mattress was slightly falling apart. Pillows were flat and not comfortable. The bathroom was beautiful with a huge jacuzzi tub and large sink area. Also, I thought by paying extra for a junior suite, we would be closer to the beach. This is not the case. We were actually the furthest from the beach possible. Even so, the short walk wasn't too terrible. We usually stopped at the lobby on our way there for a drink and to check Facebook.

Restaurants and Bars:
Food was fantastic! Don't believe what anyone else says! There is something for everyone. I consider myself a bit of an unadventurous eater and I found a ton of stuff that I enjoyed. Our favorite was the Italian Corner at Le Catedral - the main buffet.
We only tried 2 a la carte's which were the Mexican and the Brazilian. Both were great! We tried several times to get into the Japanese restaurant but both times it was a 3 hour wait. It's impossible to get reservations so we usually just resorted to the buffet.
We mostly at at El Catedral because it was so close to our room and had lunch at El Arrecife on the beach which was equally as delicious. Lots of fresh fruit and a good variety of cuisine.
The Sports Bar was another place we ate at a few times if we were snacky in the middle of the night or after drinking at the lobby. It's open 24/7 and has really good bar food like chicken nuggets, onion rings, pizza, hot dogs, nachos etc.
We mainly drank at the lobby bar La Caoba. Look for Francisco! He is awesome! We met some fellow Canadians and the bartenders would just bring us shots of all different delicious things without even asking. If you ask for "especial" they will make you something that they create. My favorite drink was the Dominican Flower - a girly drink that doesn't taste a lot like alcohol. And it's pretty!
There are also bars on the beach that we frequented. They don't make the really fancy stuff here but if you ask, they'll make you anything you want! Don't forget your Bubba Keg mugs - it can get exhausting getting up from your beach chair and walking to the bar every 15 mins.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach here cannot be beat! White, fine sand feels like velvet under your feet. The ocean is so blue and clear it's breathtaking.
Get up early to get a palapa. They're usually all taken by 8am. People save chairs on the beach with their towels even though it's not allowed but do what you have to do to get the spot you want!
We slept-in mostly everyday and never had a problem finding some chairs to lay on. If you want some shade, grab a spot under a palm tree or head to the pool since it's less busy.
Women are allowed to go topless on the beach and trust me, there are a lot that take advantage of this option so if you're uncomfortable with that, then best get your sun at the pool.
The only bad thing about the beach is the amount of hassle we got from locals trying to sell us stuff. Every 5 minutes there would be a guy offering photo shoots, parasailing or horseback riding. As much as I realize that this is their job, it's very irritating to be interrupted during a conversation or awoken from a nice slumber to be offered dune buggy rides. We found that if we put in our headphones and closed our eyes, they wouldn't bother us so much, They also remember you so if you say you'll think about it, they'll approach you day after day. if you straight out say you're not interested, they won't ask you again.
The pools are nice but we didn't use them. It was way too hot. We lasted 10 minutes there the second day and had to leave because we were scorched.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We didn't do any excursions or take part in any activities.
We did, however, get a moonlight massage on the beach. It was fantastic! If you can afford the $140, definitely do this. It includes champagne and a massage for two. Very relaxing!

Other Comments:
I celebrated my birthday during our vacation and for it, the staff decorated our room with flowers, roses and towel animals. For a fee, they delivered Moet champagne to our room and a bouquet of roses with a Happy Birthday balloon. They also put a Just Married banner on our door even though we're not married. We got a kick out of that. It was very romantic sipping champagne on the beach.

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"Our Perfect Honeymoon"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  Toni  on Nov 25, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Nov, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1125 people found this review helpful

Absolutely will be going back to this resort! Loved everything about it, the people, the beach, the activities, the food, cant complain about one thing! The hotel gave us some champagne and a bottle of rum for our honeymoon and also hosted a nice dinner for everyone on their honeymoon. We've never experienced a Mariachi band before but we have now!

Arrival:
Very easy, my husband and I dont speak much spanish but the people there were more than willing to try their english for us! Not much of a wait at all for the bus to take us to the hotel, once at the hotel they got us right to our room!

Rooms:
Beautiful. Ours was very basic but we saw another couples room and it was Amazing!! They upgraded and got a big cornerjacuzzi tub with a big standing shower, I think there bathroom was as big as our entire room!! Our air conditioning failed one night but we called the front desk and they sent someone right away and he stayed until it was fixed!

Restaurants and Bars:
The food was saltier than we are used to but I certainly cant complain because there was more than enough of a selection! I would highly recommend the Japanese restaraunt, yummy!!!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Wonderful. the pool was clean, I didnt see any garbage anywhere, saw a lot of maintenance men around cleaning and making sure everything was good. We saw one taking a rest eating a coconut by a tree and he offered us one, very cool experience to have a man cut a perfect hole in a coconut for you so you can drink the juice!

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
So much fun! The people there were SO energetic and friendly, they were VERY entertaining and the activities were cool, I've always wanted to learn the Merengue on the beach and my husband had a blast playing water polo!

Other Comments:
I would recommend doing some of the activities off the resort so you can have an appreciation for how these people live, we did the ziplining and it was quite an eyeopener for us not to drive through the town but to drive through the country side and see the hard work these people put in just to get by. An absolutely beautiful country!

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"Grand Palladium Bavaro February 2010"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Chuck  on Feb 26, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1184 people found this review helpful

We stayed at the GPB the first week of Feb 2010. We flew with Air Transat ($1000 pp +tax) from Regina and we’re in a junior suite “Imperial Club”. The imperial club gave us extras such as a concierge, rum and fruit welcome basket, free internet, slippers and housecoats, pool towels in room, and nightly turn down service. All in all this is a nice resort. It was clean, the staff excellent and the food good. With the Imperial Club we also had use of the pools, buffets, ala carts, and beach of the Grand Palladium Punta Cana, and the Grand Palladium Palace. Given this I couldn’t see a reason why anyone would paying more to stay at either of these other resorts.

Your Arrival:
Good. 2 bus loads of travels got off at this resort so check in was busy.

Rooms:
This complex is a older hotel complex so it wasn’t as impressive as some we’ve stayed at. In our room you couldn’t take a shower without spraying water all over the floor (no curatin and only a short galss wall)and their was no drain. It was a jaccuzzi tub but only for 1 person. They were however generous with towels and replaced them twice a day.

Restaurants and Bars:
The food was ok but not spectacular. There are no snacks at or near the pools and late in the afternoon the only place to get food is at the sports bar which is near the entrance at the complete opposite end of the resort. Limited types of food and drink are available on the beach but not all day. The food served at the 3 buffets is the same so no need to travel to eat at the others. A small group (<4) can eat at any ala carte without a reservation; just have to wait 30 min or less. The drinks were fair. They kept running out of limes and mint all over the resort. Drinks were always made way to strong and unless it was on their bar menu they couldn’t make it (ex: dirty monkey). At one bar we asked for 2 drinks and they only mixed/blended enough for 1, and then proceeded to give samples to other people at the bar before giving us each our half a drink!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Grounds and pools are well maintained. We tried the spa twice one day but all the hot tubs were cold (maintenace?)

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Lots of daily activities. The nightly entertainment is the usual star and movie tributes but they need to upgrade their sound system. The one night they had a beach party.

Other Comments:
The room service and concierge was excellent. My wife has a bad back and the mattress was causing her pain. Upon talking with the concierge the mattress was flipped that night and replaced the next day.

Extras: There’s a pillow menu at a cost of $3/day. Lobster is available at all restaurants but only at a cost. We had a late checkout so we were able to keep our room until 5pm for $40.

Overall, a good resort for the price and a very relaxing holiday but not an outstanding one. Chuck and Sharon

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"Stayed 4-11/02/2010"

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa
User Rating:  The Grand Palladium Bávaro Resort & Spa Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Rick & Cheryl  on Feb 21, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
1178 people found this review helpful


Your Arrival:
Flew out of Toronto with Air Transat on time. Extra money for Club Class was worth it. Very good flight. Customs in Punta Cana was very quick and painless. Air Transat desk gave us proper instructions to our transportation and our hotel was the first stop. Check in could have been better handled by the front desk staff. We were given room keys that didn't work, information package in French instead of the English we requested, and our room was missing many items as advertised in the Air Transat Imperial Club option. The front desk was advised of the items we didn't receive so as not to be billed for them on check out.

Rooms:
Imperial Club room on the ground floor was very clean, king size bed. Maid service was excellent. We left dollar bills for tips each morning which the maid really appreciated and we were rewarded with additional supplies in the fridge and bathroom. The pillows were inadequate, too flat, and the hotel wanted to charge $3 per night for extra pillows which we didn't go for. Pillows should be included in a 4 1/2 star hotel.

Restaurants and Bars:
Food was fabulous! Selection was excellent, and the 3 a la carte restaurants ( Italian, Mexican, Brazilian) had a variety of choices and the staff were entertaining and wonderful. The other nights we ate at the buffet in the Bavaro section and were very impressed with their theme nights. Coffee is not what we are use to and water was not hot enough for tea. We had access to 13 bars and 14 restaurants. The only bar tender we found unpleasant was at the far end of the beach. The pool bar staff were great. Drinks were abundant, not watered down, remember to bring your travel mug as their glasses are small.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach is the reason for going to Punta Cana and it did not disappoint us. Up early before 7:30 to reserve an umbrella and chairs. We brought our own towels so we could ensure our towels were different from all of the other blue hotel towels at the beach. Hotel towel service was good. Pool was clean and enjoyed the activities. Grounds as mentioned in other reviews were immaculate.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We did one excursion and that was the Bavaro Runners all day trip. Highly recommend this tour. Air Transat rep arranged free taxi to/from Nicole's shop located about 10 minute drive where we found the best deal on rum. We spent a lot of time on the beach and participated in their activities. Fun for a laugh.

Other Comments:
We had great weather all week long, sunny and 31 degrees. The resort is huge so expect to walk a lot. There is a train which takes you to the other resorts but is crowded at night. The casino is small and not air conditioned. There are 2 separate night shows which were only okay. The magician was very good. There are flea markets around the pool and near the casino selling paintings, jewelry and cigars. They want to barter. This resort is not the place for shopping. Acquiring internet time is tedious and the screen is in Spanish of which there are no instructions. If you do not obtain your password before 1 pm, the front desk will charge you $8/hr when you are allotted 30 minutes a day free.

Our pick up was for 6:30 pm and check out was at 12 noon. You can opt for either a late check out for $61 until 6 pm or use the courtesy room. We asked for the late check out well in advance and were told 'yes' and to return later that day to pay. When I returned with my money, I was told 'no' we couldn't have the room. My wife was upset and she returned an hour later asking for the late check out and was told 'no problem'. We received our confirmation and paid at check out the next evening.

Because of the problems with the front desk, we would not likely go back to this resort but would try the other resorts in the complex.

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