Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Reviews

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Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA  

C/ El Cortecito, Playa Bávaro, Punta Cana - Dominican Republic

"Not a friendly place to visit."
Posted by: Patrice  on Nov 6, 2013
see all reviews

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Reviews
Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Pictures and Information
Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Bavaro Beach Dominican Republic

#10
of 29 Hotels in Bavaro Beach

User rating 4.2

Based on 20 reviews

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Information


The newly renovated Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa is located on a privileged setting right on the seafront of the world famous Playa Bavaro. Built on an estate of 80,000 m2 next to the Palladium Bavaro Grand Resort & Spa and the Palladium Palace Resort Spa & Casino, all set in the midst of a coconut plantation and lush tropical vegetation.

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Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Reviews

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.2 of 5 20 reviews
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"Not a friendly place to visit."

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  Patrice  on Nov 6, 2013  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Nov, 2013 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
177 people found this review helpful

I was very displeased with the staff on this resort. Now do not get me wrong the resort and beach are very beautiful, but the staff was racist and also very rude. If you are not a White American, German or Spanish speaking individual you are treated as if you are some type of outcast. Basically none of the staff spoke any kind of English at all. i was advised since it was off season the staff during this time is not required to speak any type of English. When they were able to communicate (because I do speak some Spanish) the staff then provided incorrect information (regarding reservations that were or were not needed for restaurants that are on resort premises) and were very rude. This resort is huge and includes 4 different places were you can stay (Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Resort & Spa , Grand Palladium Palace Resort Spa & Casino, Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa and The Royal Suites Turquesa by Palladium. I was advised that this resort has on premises transportation due to it's enormous size that is supposed to run every 20 minutes to pick you up and take you to your destinations. Well this transportation only catered to you if you were not dark in skin color (if you get my drift). My family and I literally waited for more then a half hour for transportation. Many empty vehicles flew right by us or would ride past us, and visibly stop right in front of a non dark skin individual to offer a ride. I would NOT recommend this place to anyone who is looking for quality service or looking to be treated fairly.

Room Number:
8515

Room Block:
Grand Palladium Palace

Arrival:
Short, but sweet

Rooms:
Had bugs around the jacuzzi and on the dresser. I believe they were ants.

Restaurants and Bars:
Staff was very rude. At one point the waiter dropped the menus off and did not return for at least 20 minutes. The restaurant was not busy so I am not sure where the delay came from.When the waiter did finally show he was not friendly and made it seem as though we were bothersome.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Clean

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The resort only informed you of the outside activities that were not included within our stay. I found out by walking down the beach a few miles that the resort does offer free beach activities, but again we were not privey to this information during our arrival or group meeting when provided with the excursion info.

Other Comments:
I was sadly dissapointed

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"Great resort, wonderful vacation!! June 15-23, 2012"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  Karen  on Jun 27, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jun, 2012 | Leisure | Family and Kids
436 people found this review helpful

Overall – loved it as much as we did the first time we were there. We really like being in the Punta Cana section in Bldg 2000, 3000, or 4000 since it is so close to the beach. Staff all over the property was so friendly and helpful. We stopped at the front desk every day to ask for extra water/beer and we got it every day with no problems at all. Anything we needed from the front desk, they were quick to try to respond to your request. The Guest Services guy that was in the Punta Cana section – Eugenio Medina – was so friendly and helpful, went out of his way to make sure you had what you needed. Cannot wait to go back for another visit in less than 2 years. My husband and I plan to make this our vacation spot every other year. Sister and her husband also plan on returning. If you ever want to see a more beautiful spot, I don’t know where you would go. This was the most relaxing, enjoyable vacation for all 4 of us. It truly was…paradise.

Room Number:
4125 and 4125

Room Block:
4000

Arrival:
We are 2 couples, all over 50. Our second time to Grand Palladium PC, and my sister/BIL’s first time. None of us speak Spanish, but found no language barrier at all for the most part. Stayed in Building 4000, 2nd floor. Will break the review into sections.
Flights – we flew from MIA, sister from MKE. Both flights went great, both into PC slightly early. Easy lines, check-in did not take long at all. Airport is still as cute as ever and lots more improvements since we had been there 4 years ago. Note – we took school supplies with us and were met right at the Apple Counter by a guy from The Rotary Club. He gladly accepted the supplies for us so we did not have to worry about how to get them to a school.
Apple Check-In – piece of cake. Rep called us by name when we walked up to the desk. Kept our luggage for us so we could go to the little café outside the airport to grab a drink while we waited for sis/bil to arrive. Once they got there, the 4 of us checked in very quickly and we were on our way. Ride to the resort was easy and it took about 25-30 minutes.
Resort Check-In – Girls went to check in while the guys went for a drink. So easy, entire process took us no more than 15 minutes. Staff was extremely friendly. Once we got our information and wristbands, porter took our luggage and headed us up to our rooms. We were in our rooms by 3 pm.

Rooms:
Rooms – very nice, we both had a least a partial ocean view from our balcony. Air worked fine, but b/c it was so humid, we found it was hard for the AC to totally pull the humidity out of the room. Safe worked fine. Room was clean, very well maintained. Beds/pillows were nice and comfortable. Our maid (Adalgisa Reyes) did a great job of cleaning our room, giving us extra towels, and making sure we had flower petals on the tub/vanity every day. There were IPOD stations, TV’s in both rooms. Nice ceiling fans helped keep it cooler at night. I will say this – last time we stayed in Bldg 2000 and our garden tub was in the bath and so was the vanity. This time we had the shower/toilet in the small room and the vanity/tub was in the main area. My personal preference is the tub/vanity in the bath. Two reasons – having the tub in the bath makes the shower area so much bigger for taking showers. Also-with the tub/vanity in the bath, there was a light switch in that room. I get up very early, so it was a little hard on my husband that I had to turn on the light by the vanity every morning in order to get dressed so I could take towels down to the beach and go for a walk. So I much prefer the tub/shower combo for these reasons.

Restaurants and Bars:
Dining – We did not like Arrecife Restaurant (Buffet) at the beach in the Bavaro section. We thought the El Bohio Buffet in the Palace section was excellent. Staff was great there, and we thought the selection, especially for dinner, was much better there. We also ate at the buffet by the Punta Cana lobby, but only for breakfast a couple times, that was fine also. Dinner – we ate at the Steakhouse by the beach by the Punta Cana pool on Sat night. We had about an hour wait, no big deal. However, when we finally got seated, everything went downhill. Took forever to get waited on, husband never got his appetizers, and when we finally got our dinners about 2 hours later, everything was cold. So service/food in this restaurant was horrible. We also ate at El Quijote which is the Spanish fare – one word – FANTASTIC. I must add that this was the best Spanish food I have ever eaten. The food was spiced just right, not over spicy or under, but if you ever wanted really great food, you cannot go wrong with this place, even when the lights went out, it was still really good. Service and food were so good we ate there twice. Sports Bar – great selection of sandwiches, pizza, etc. I had a chicken panini there that was really good. There was also a BBQ on Friday night that we went to and that was a lot of fun. It was held by the Snack Bar on the beach in the Punta Cana section. We found we could wear short in the buffets at night with no issue at all. We even saw shorts in the Ala Carte restaurants, although we did not do that. Overall we thought the food was great with lots of variety.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach/Grounds – gorgeous as ever. So beautifully maintained. Beach was raked every morning and it did not matter where on the beach you walked, it was clean. Water was so beautiful. Did not matter where you walked around the property, workers were out there keeping it clean and manicured. Last time we were there in April, so with it being June this time, we found it much less crowded.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Excursions – I highly recommend Pedro Milanes from Happy Boy parasailing. He is one of the vendors on the beach. Parasailing was only $60 for each couple, equipment was in great shape and we had a really good/fun ride. Not only that, he would stop on a daily basis and talk with us just to say hello. What a great person. Make sure you check him out, he is well worth the money. We also booked 2 excursions from Hotelextras inside the Punta Cana lobby. We were extremely disappointed in both excursions. Without going into major detail, we booked a “private” tour that was supposed to let us do what we wanted. The people who did this tour were so unorganized, they had absolutely no idea what was going on. We could have paid Pedro ½ what we paid for this tour and gotten the same thing. We also did a catamaran tour through Hotelextras. All I will say is this – if you are going to book ANY excursions with Hotelextras make sure you totally understand what you are getting before you pay for the excursions. We understood we were getting something totally different than what we actually got. Personally, I will never book an excursion with them again. For the most part, the staff that works for Hotelextras had very poor communication b/t themselves. The guy that was there most of the time (not the one we booked with) had no clue about what we booked. They work for the same outfit, they should know what each other is doing, however, he was clueless.

Other Comments:
Entertainment – make sure you check the boards around the property – usually in the lobbies and the buffets – they give you the information about what shows or other entertainment is going on each night. That was how we found out about the beach BBQ and that you had to have reservations to attend. So it is very important that you check these boards every day. We thought the Entertainment was vastly improved from 4 years ago. First show was Cemeterio and was really cute – good dancing. Michael Jackson was way better this time around. Again, really good dancers. Last night they did a Dominican Dance/Singing show. Even though we did not understand the words, we thought this was the best show of all. Really good live singers, band and dancers. Lots of quick costume changes and very colorful. Really enjoyed it.

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"Great First Time Visit"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  WILF  on Feb 5, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2012 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
522 people found this review helpful

Room Number:
1572

Room Block:
57

Arrival:
We arrived late Jan 14th and had a very smooth checkin. Room was ready and were unpacked within 1/2 hour. Front desk staff was courteous and quick.

Rooms:
Room was unbelievable. Huge main room, with large four poster bed with netting. HUGE bathroom, with sunken tub, stand alone shower, toilet, and double sink. Small room off to side with little garden and hammock in it. Like a little natural sauna. Rooms were very clean, but did have to spray air freshner when we first got there. After that, no smell remained. 37" flat screen tv, with lots of english channels.

Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet food was plentiful and good quality. No shortage of choices on any night. Sports bar had awesonme pizza and chicken, onion rings, fries, nachos etc. Ala Cartes were filling very quickly at night, so you had to book early and at least the day before if you wanted the 6 or 8 pm sitting. 10 pm sitting was usual available most nights. Brazilian and Asian were best by far, with the Brazilian being an experience you must do!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach was very clean, and lots of chairs. Some towel game going on but not as bad as other resorts. Pool areas were nice and quiet, and clean. Pool bars were quick and courteous staff.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Night shows were hit and miss. Circus and magic show were excellent, while the Michael Jackson and Diva show were disappointing. Saw the circus show twice as it was so so good!!

Other Comments:
This resort is massive in size, and if you have any mobility issues, its probably not the one for you. There is a shuttle train that goes around, but its about every 20 mins, and you have to go around the whole 4 resort complex to get to where you want to go. Walk from sports bar to beach is a good 10-15mins at a leisurely pace. The shops on-site were better than most resorts we have been to.

Only negatives we had were due to size of resort, and the fact reservations filled up so quickly for ala cartes.

Free WIFI is available in the lobby, and was reasonable most days. When there were alot of ppl on their tablets and laptops, it was a little sluggish, but hey free is free!

Would we go back, definitely. Would we recommend, yes, but again, only to someone who likes a large resort and doesnt have a problem getting around.

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"A Wonderful First Destination Vacation"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Cheryl  on Jan 31, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2012 | Wedding | With Group
523 people found this review helpful

This was our first time at an all-inclusive resort. We had a great time. The service, for the most part, was excellent. the rooms were laid out nicely, only one complaint about the bed...was a little uncomfortable, but really wasn't a problem considering we were in such a beautiful setting.

The reception area was a bit of a turn-off as they were at times not helpful at all. In all other areas we were treated well.

Room Number:
9825

Room Block:
9800

Arrival:
We arrived Wednesday, January 18, 2012 and made it through customs quite easily. Our travel representatives were there to greet us at the luggage carousel and got our group loaded and off to the resort before the rain!

Rooms:
I loved the floors!!! The layout of the room was nice, and our balcony was spacious with a nice breeze. I loved the fact there was a safe in our room.

Restaurants and Bars:
All the restaurants we visited were very nice with the exception of the Spanish Restaurant 'Le Torres'. We were a party of 16, and initially the service was great. Unfortunately, after the appetizers arrived it all went downhill. Everyone received their entrees, and had finished their meals except for me! As I was unable to make eye contact with any of the servers, I finally got up and walked across the restaurant to inform one server of our situation. It took 2 people coming to our table, us explaining the problem, me receiving my husband's appetizer, then my entree (I had already told them I didn't want it), all the while everyone else was ordering dessert! Then when we wanted to order coffee, once again, nobody was around! We normally tipped very well, but at this one place, I did not tip at all!

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
I was in awe of the beauty of the beach and ocean! The pool area was also very inviting and beautiful, but I visited the beach daily....it was paradise!

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"Mediocre"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 3.0 of 5

Posted by:  Marjorie  on Dec 2, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Nov, 2011 | Wedding | With Group
541 people found this review helpful

Found the front desk staff very inefficient. Whenever questions were asked you were often given "what they thought you would like to hear". If it didn't sound right you would ask another front desk clerk and get a totally different answer. Many things were not explained and you had to learn by "trial and error" - how the rm. keys work, air conditioning problems, frig not working, extending check out by one hour, which a la carte restaurants had which food. Overall I would call the front desk clerks untrained and unknowledgeable.

Room Number:
9501

Room Block:
Grand Palladium Palace

Arrival:
Nov. 24/11

Rooms:
Rooms were great but no-one explained the key system, the non functioning a/c, how the mini bar operated, where to get water. Had to find a lot of things out from other tourists or word of mouth.

Restaurants and Bars:
Both a la carte restaurants that we went to were horrible. Bad service and very inferior food. The Brazilian restaurant where the waitresses make little animal noises for the various meat (oink, oink, moo moo, gobble gobble). Very annoying and the restaurant itself was noisy. The other we went to was even worse - it was the Beach restaurant and was supposed to have various steaks as their calling card. Service was deplorable (1 hr. and 1 half from ordering until food arriving). Tenderloins and cowboy steaks both inferior. Have had better food at road side stands in Mexico

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
These are outstanding, beautiful and I can't say enough about how nice they were.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Seemd to be lots. Again the front desk staff seemed ditsy dosey and the Air Transat person was rude and treated us like we were stupid.

Other Comments:
Nice place to go for a wedding but wouldn't return

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"beware of weekend influx"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  bernie  on Sep 25, 2010  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Sep, 2010 | Leisure | With Group
805 people found this review helpful

on friday afternoon many busloads of the country's citizens descended on this hotel for the weekend. It's just amazing how loud, rude and pushy these people are without manners or regard for others. the buffet included butting into lines, grabbing food with fingers and after tasting things, merely throwing them on the floor. throwing garbage into the pool and ocean just floored me. I've seen enough not to want me to return anytime soon. My wife is slightly disabled and since the property is huge, I tried to rent a wheelchair only to be told by reception that would be $350 for the week---wow.

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"Had a great time. FYI information to pass on"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Janet  on Jul 14, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jul, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
844 people found this review helpful

Just FYI info: stay 7-4 to 7-9-2010
Facility beautiful. Questions that need answers: Must wear shoes, shirts, and shorts to all buffets. Guys wear tshirts with sleeves to all restaurants, al la carte restuarant guys have to wear dress pants and shirt with sleeves,and with or without collar. 110 volt for curling irons (do not need 110 adapter), a lot of walking resort huge - can request golf cart to pick up and take to restaurants or theaters. A lot of English speaking workers no language barrier noted. no problem getting reservations to rest. reservations must be make by 12 noon. remember they are 1h ahead. very hot wear light and airy clothing. Important: at DR airport you cannot carry any electric (curling iron, fan, hair dryer, etc) in carry on bag must be put in suitcase they confiscate or make you pay additional money to send back to USA. U have to pay a $10-15 fee to come into their country. When leaving airport you have to pay $30 for first bag and $40 for second back if load on plane. Carry on bag is free if under 40 lbs. take mosquito spray will need at dusk mosquitoes are bad. take anti diarrhea medication and pepto bismol. 8 of us went and ending up with diarrhea unsure why.

Rooms:
Were clean had some problems with ants, and noted few roaches in rooms at night. Might want to take roach spray. I notified butler and she had them spray for ants.

Restaurants and Bars:
Drinks were fairly good. But everything is warm from colas to beer. And daiquaris and Margaritas are slight frozen.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
very clean.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Activities on resort had fun played water polo, darts, water volleyball. Activities doesn't start till around 2 pm. Check theater daily for shows we had a good time at the shows - live performances by the workers. Went on a super buggy ride it rained that day and was cold - but we still had a good time. Be careful when doing excersions if going thru neighborhood the children will run beside u and jump on your buggy asking for money. We were told not to give money due to children will not go to school. We gave candy.
We played golf cost approx $200 dollars. Take a collapsable cooler with you and buy your drinks prior to going to course, bottle water $7, snicker candy bar $3, and hamburger was $16 at course. Take snacks with u also. Resort is so big we requested rooms together but did not get (we booked 6 months ahead of time) take walkie talkies if going with large group. They do not supply wheelchairs they charge $25 per day - take ur own if difficulty ambulating.

Other Comments:
We did have a good time and would stay at another Palladium resort. Most all employees were friendly and tried to be accomidating.

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"A big resort with lots to do"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Mark  on May 2, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
868 people found this review helpful

This is a huge resort. It has lots of restaurants (al a carte and buffets) and bars, two theatres, two casinos and a disco. There are two small trains which can take you from one end of the resort to the other. However, if you don't like to walk you probably won't end up taking advantage of the whole resort.

It is actually made up of four Grand Palladium Resorts which are: Punta Cana, Bavaro, Palace and Royal Suites (adults only). Guests can use all of the facilities except for the Royal Suites.

The staff were mostly happy and could communicate in English or Spanish (or French and German as well).

Parts of the resort are starting to show their age and could use a few touch ups.

Your Arrival:
The check in was easy and relatively quick. We had booked a room in the Punta Cana section, but it was full and we were given a room in the Bavaro section.

Rooms:
We stayed in the 7100 block in the Bavaro Section. While we had originally booked the Punta Cana section because it was closest to the beach our room in the Bavaro section was very central to everything.

The room was clean. As others had mentioned the jacuzzi tub and the sink are in the bedroom area with a separate toilet and show in the bathroom which was an unusual layout.

Our room was quite quiet and we had no problems sleeping. If you want for $3 a night you can a premium pillow from their 'pillow menu'.

Your fridge will be stocked daily with water, pop and beer.

Restaurants and Bars:
One of the reasons that we choose this resort is my wife is a picky eater and it has lots of dining options. Overall the food was good. The menu's for all of the restaurants are posted in the main lobbies. Take a look at them before you go.

You do not have to reserve restaurants in the morning like at many other resorts. When you arrive for dinner if the restaurant is full you will be put on the waiting list and given a beeper. Then you can go off to one of the bars and wait to be called. Our longest wait was about 1/2 hour and there was no wait at all at the Seafood Restaurant.

The Restaurants are:

Breakfast - 3 buffet restaurants (the Palace was our favourite) Food included eggs (could be made any style), fruit, pancakes, waffles, cereal, sausage etc.

Lunch - 2 buffet restaurants (close to the pools/beach) and food included chicken, fish, hamburgers, nachos, salad bar, fruit, french fries etc.

You can also get some food right at the stands right on the beach (hotdogs, pizza etc.).

Dinner - 3 buffet restaurants - similar to lunch but also included stations for pasta, prime rib etc. Each had a theme night during the week (mexican, american, chineese etc.).

Dinner - Al a carte - 8 Restaurants- Sumptuori (Japaneese), Rodizio (Brazilian), Mariachi (Mexican), Bamboo (Asian), Mare Nostrum (Mediterranean), Arrecife (Streak/Seafood), El Quijote (Spanish) and La Uva (Italian). We ate at the Japanese (twice), Mexican, seafood and the Spanish, all of which were good. The Japanese has three options a sushi bar, al a carte and the show. Try and book the show at least once, it is very entertaining.

The Japanese, Mexican and Brazilian seemed to be the most popular.

There is also a Sports Bars open 24 hours with lots of comfort food (Nachos, hotdogs, pizza, coffee and deserts). It is air conditioned!

Bars - There are lots. There are three large lobby bars, bars by all the pools, 5 or 6 little bars right on the beach. Hemingway’s is an air conditioned bar open in the evenings which includes premium alcohols (all included - no extra charges). There is also a disco and the drinks there are included as well. There are tonnes of staff and you rarely have to wait at all for a drink.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach - This is why you come to Punta Cana. The beach is clean and huge (we walked for over two hours in each direction and did not come to the end). Unlike other resorts we had stayed at there was never a problem finding a lounge chair. Even at 11:00 am there were lots both at the beach and the pool. The wait was not too rough the whole week we were their. The only downside was there were lots of vendors trying to sell you stuff (parasailing, cigars, massages, photos with a monkey etc.)

Pools - We did not really use the pools ourselves. But they all has swim up bars and were clean. The pool near the ocean in the Punta Cana section was the party pool with lots of activities and music. The other two pools in the Bavaro section were more laid back. They all had a good mix of sun and shade. There were two more pools in the Palace area, but we didn't go there.

Grounds - They were very well kept and clean. Staff would offer to cut open a fresh coconut for you if you wanted.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We did go to the Palma Real Shopping Centre, which is a 10 min. free shuttle from the Resort. We ate at the Hard Rock Cafe which was great. The rest of the shopping was actually high end designer stores for the most part and quite expensive.

There is a large sports area which has basketball courts, soccer field, tennis courts, driving range, etc.

There are two theatres so there are two different shows each night. We only went to one - karaoke which was hilarious. But other guests liked all of the shows they had seen.

Other Comments:
Overall this is a good resort if you want a relaxing beach vacation with a little partying thrown in.

As long as you don't mind walking a bit you can enjoy all that the resort has to offer.

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"Another wonderful trip!"

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Tina  on Mar 15, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Group
796 people found this review helpful

This was our third time in Punta Cana, second at this resort. We were a group of 8 and all were booked in the same villa which was fantastic. While we weren't given a room like the other 3 couples (with in-room jacuzzi), we did have shower/jacuzzi tub in larger bathroom and were quite happy with the set up. The rooms were showing a bit of age, but were always clean and well-stocked. We tried 5 ala carte restaurants, my favorite being the Cantina Mariachi. While there, we made a few visits to the Sports Bar to catch Olympic hockey (some glitches trying to find the game, games only shown on smaller tv) - but the atmosphere of Canadians cheering their home team on was contagious! We would definitely travel back to this resort as we like having the opportunity of being able to walk this spacious resort and choose from the different pools and restaurants.

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"Great resort with great food, beautiful grounds, pools and beach. "

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA
User Rating:  Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & SPA Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  John  on Feb 10, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
796 people found this review helpful

This is a Huge Resort with warm friendly staff, beautiful grounds, good food and drink, and lots to do. Even if you don’t read this whole review remember this name. “Faustin.” This man will listen to you and solve any issues you may have with the resort. You will find him working at the Punta Cana Lobby and he will be smiling. If you want to make him really happy bring him some real Maple Syrup.
Given the opportunity I would go back to this resort in a minute. Our room was large, clean, and comfortable.

Your Arrival:
We flew Sunwing and the plane seats were very small and tight. We paid for the seat upgrade with some extra leg room and thank goodness for that. Sunwing staff in the air and on the ground were friendly and great to deal with. We were in the very first row and had people bumping into us the whole flight while they stood in line for the bathroom. I was uncomfortable the whole flight, however the flight staff was friendly and did a good job serving everyone. We left Toronto on time and without any problems. Flight arrived ahead of time in Punta Cana and we were rushed through the airport and were on our bus headed to the resort in about 45 min. Arriving at the resort was a bit of a different story. I don’t feel we were treated very well upon arrival. We were checked in about noon and told our rooms wouldn’t be ready until 3 pm which we expected. I was under the impression our bags would be looked after until our room was ready, however they were just left sitting in the lobby and were not being watched so anyone could walk by and grab one. I was under the impression that someone would be around to watch them; however because of the high volume of people checking in there was no one to do this. Several buses checked in after us and those people were checked in and the bell man loaded their luggage onto a golf cart with the guests and they were brought straight to their rooms. At 3:30 pm I asked when we would get our room and was told it wasn’t ready yet and they would let us know. I went back at 4 pm to ask again and was told the same thing, however this time I complained and a few minutes later an assistant manager named Faustin came to speak to me and he told us we would have a room soon. We were assigned a room in the Bavaro part of the resort and it was a downgrade from the room we had paid for. It wasn’t until 4:30 that we finally arrived in the room. Others on our plane went through the same thing. It wasn’t until 2 days later that we were finally moved into the room we paid for.

Rooms:
The first room we were in was nice, but as mentioned above was not the room we ordered or paid for. This room was in the Bavaro section of the resort, in Building 18 and had double beds and was dark. The bathroom in this room was very large with a double size hot tub, double sink, and shower and of course toilet. For anyone staying in this room or this area of the resort beware, when it gets dark if you are in the bathroom with the lights on anyone passing your room can see through the blinds and see you clearly, not really sure why they don’t have black out blinds.

The second room we were in was in the Punta Cana section building 2000 room 2132. This room is on the second floor and overlooks the ocean and the balcony view isn’t great because it overlooks the public toilet entrance, however the room is large with lots of windows and is very bright. The room is all open and the toilet and shower are in a small area with a sliding door. The hot tub is a single, however the jets were strong and I enjoyed it a few times. Bed was king-size and the mattress was firm and comfortable. Pillows were not an issue for me, but I like flat thin pillows. Other pillows were available on the “pillow menu” and I believe you can get the pillow of your choice for $3 US a night. I think we saw 2 or 3 insects in the two weeks we were there so bugs were not a factor. We left gifts and tips for the maid on the bed and tips for the guy who filled the Mini Bar with drinks. We simply put a note in the bar fridge as to what we wanted and it was filled daily.

Restaurants and Bars:
Take the time to learn the schedule of the restraints both A la carte and buffet. This will prevent you from missing a meal. If you do miss a meal, jump on the train or get a bellman with a cart to bring you to the Sports Bar. Food and Drink are available 24/7 at the Sports Bar. We only ate at one a la carte only because I simply didn’t want to wait in line and wear long pants. We ate at the Italian a la carte and the food was outstanding. The rest of the time we ate at the different buffets around the resort. The food was good/great, and we had a large variety to choose from. The bars were everywhere and you don’t have to walk far to find something to drink. We brought Bubba Mugs on the trip and they saved us some trips to the bar, however going to the bar was fun because the staff enjoyed seeing you every time. This will seem like common sense, however… If you take time to say hello and talk to the staff you will be treated like Royalty. These people don’t expect a tip every time, however tips go a long way and if you’re nice to them they will wait on you hand and foot. Friendship with the staff goes a long way.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Clean clean clean. Staff was on the beach and at the pool early every morning cleaning away any garbage from the day before and the beach was cleaned of seaweed. The beach is worked on all day in a very non intrusive manor. Both Pool and Beach are very enjoyable. If you find the wind is kicking up in the morning you may want to attempt to claim a pool chair. The pools are well sheltered from the wind.

Chair game - You will have to play the chair game if you want to lounge by the pool or the beach. We took turns getting up between 6:30 am and 7 am to run down to the beach to get our spot. Getting up at 7:30 will get you a chair; however it may not be where you want it. 6:30 am was also an amazing time to get Sun Rise Photos. I find it a little ridiculous that you have to go through all this at a resort of this caliber. In my opinion there should be a 25% increase of chairs because they have the room.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Animation Team – at different parts of the beach you will find “Animation Huts” these huts at staffed by the Animation Team and they will provide with beach sporting equipment like Volleyballs, Frisbee’s and other things, however the best part is they are very active in creating things for you to do. If you don’t feel like taking part they smile and say ok and move on. The Animation Team is a great crew and they go all day long starting on the beach and in the afternoon moving to the pool area. If you need anything while you’re on the beach simply ask them.

Salesmen – There are many different tours and excursions available and you will be approached several times a day trying to sell something to do. We did two excursions during our stay. The Segway Tour and Dolphin Island. BE CAREFUL who you buy from. My advice would be book your tours through your travel rep and then if something goes wrong, they will help resolve it or return your money. Gamble on signing up for a trip on the beach if you like, but remember it’s a gamble.

Down the beach on the other side of the Royal you will find a market on and a little off the beach that sells souvenirs for cheap, but once off the resort these people are relentless and will hound you nonstop. There is security at the very edge of the resort, however once you cross the line you are on your own… and they will be waiting for you at the line...lol.

Other Comments:
I won’t travel with Sunwing again because of the flight. Next time I will fly with a company that offers first class because I’m not tiny and could use the extra space that first class offers.

Other than a bad start with check in and some bad weather days this was a great trip. We can’t blame the weather on anyone so let’s move on. Once settled into the correct room we had a lot of fun.

I would strongly advise doing a loop of the resort on the train because you will find everything you need.

The safe in the room is big enough for a 15” laptop and a good sized camera along with other wallet sized valuables. If the maid comes into your room and finds the safe open they will not clean your room.

A one or two dollar tip will make a staff member very happy.

Dominican’s Love Canadians!

We were only off the resort once to shop and it was the same stuff you will find at the end of the beach beside the resort.
Don’t forget Sun Screen because it’s crazy expensive on the Resort. So are potato chips and things like that.

Photos: http://www.actioneventphotos.com/puntacana/

Videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kKRLdO7DJU

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