Dunes Beach Resort Reviews

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Dunes Beach Resort  

Calle Campo Elias, Valle de Pedro Gonzalez 1 | Sector El Pueblito. Playa Puerto Cruz, Pedro Gonzales, Margarita Island 2000, Venezuela

"Great Safe Place to Explore the Island "
Posted by: Jay  on Jan 9, 2012
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	Dunes Beach Resort Reviews
	Dunes Beach Resort Pictures and Information
	Dunes Beach Resort Isla Margarita Venezuela

of 11 Hotels in Isla Margarita

User rating 2.5

Based on 4 reviews

Dunes Beach Resort Information

Dunes Hotel & Beach Resort is located at the northernmost coast of the island, in the area of the best beaches of the island. Our beach, Puerto Cruz, is 2.5 km long and is of oceanic type. On the left of the hotel you will find Playa Zaragoza, a small-protected bay. We are 25 minutes away from the Santiago Mariņo Airport and 30 minutes from Porlamar, the main commercial town of Margarita.

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Dunes Beach Resort Reviews

	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 2.5 of 5 4 reviews
Very good
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Leisure (4)
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Family and Kids (1)
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1 - 5 of 4

"I'd have no trouble recommending it at all"

Dunes Beach Resort
User Rating:  	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Lesli  on Feb 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2009
579 people found this review helpful

Air Transat was on time, staff were attentive and pleasant. No issues.

Nolitours gathered everyone quickly and we were taken to the Dunes by air conditioned bus. Took 30-40 mins... lost track of time enjoying the breathtaking scenery along the way.

moved quickly. we were a quartet of girls travelling together and asked for adjoining rooms or to be very close. they put us in separate buildings. we asked to be relocated and had to approach our tours rep to get anything done. the 2nd day we were moved to an adjoining room and were happy with our new locale. generally reception was luke warm when it came to giving assistance and were sometimes rather dismissive. it was best to go directly to the tour rep or the fellow in charge of guest services

yes. they're small. but, they're also clean. the beds are quite firm. i alleviated this by getting a couple extra blankets and folding them under the sheet and had no issues after that. the sheets were crisp and clean. no insects at all. we were in the new section, building 51 so we had the nice new showers. initially we were in bldg 53 and our room smelled somewhat musty, but it could have been a combination of the high humidity and the cedar closets that created an unfamiliar odour.

*NOTE* be sure you put your security bar in place on your door. when in bldg 53 we woke up to find our door had been opened in the night. another guest in that same bldg had the same thing happen. the hotel paid attention when we told them and there was an obvious increase in security the following night. *** not all rooms had clocks and the wake up call was rather hit and miss. our friends ordered one for 0700 and it came at 0230! another time we requested it for 0900 and the phone rang at 0820. you'll also find that you get a 2nd call - a snooze alarm i guess - 10 mins later.

we were seriously impressed with the food. not greasy. a great deal of variety and fresh fresh fresh! for breakfast there was: cereal, yoghurt, croissants, toast, various sweet breads, waffles, pancakes, empanadas (with cheese or fish), omelettes, hard boiled eggs, veggie quiche, bacon/sausage, potato, steamed veggies, beans, juices, fresh fruit, cafe con leche... and i'm sure i'm forgetting some things! i am mostly vegetarian and considered a fairly serious foodie and i never had a problem finding something to eat. they have a full buffet in the main building, a snack bar at the pool, tea time with croissants, sweets and coffee at the lobby bar late afternoon, and a restaurant down on the beach with buffet or table service. each restaurant had pasta available for lunch and supper with a variety of sauces to select from.

we eventually discovered the music bar which is just off the main pool not far from the lobby bar. it was a hidden delight! rarely had other guests in there so our rowdy group quite enjoyed the quick service and all the room we wanted to rearrange furniture. hector, the bartender, was a real sweetie too!
lobby bar.. karaoke nightly. we didn't hang there cause of the smokers. there is one bartender there, name unknown, who is a real fire cracker! great sense of humour and really keeps things moving
tomas at the pool bar is a serious smooth talker who proposed marriage to one of our girls on a daily basis! fun to watch him spin the bottles while he mixed his drinks.
we didn't spend any time at the disco - the one night we went up it was super packed and very very loud and hot. we were there during a major island holiday so there were alot of locals enjoying the resort for a long weekend.

Grounds were beautifully maintained. very very clean. 1 childrens pool. another 3 pools overall. breathtaking scenery all around.

we only went on the Discover Margarita tour. 2 of our group had booked the snorkelling tour for our last day but, unfortunately, it was cancelled due to waves in excess of 3 metres! the daily hike to the lighthouse was also cancelled a couple times due to muddy conditions. i did hear that the mozzies were horrendous on that walk so if you go, repellent is required. also were told that bandits like to hang in that area and watch for tourists going it solo, so caution is advised. excellent things were said about the jeep tour. one couple we met went on the 1 day trip to angel falls (was about $300USD per person) and they thoroughly enjoyed it, although the falls were a mere trickle that day. they went on a 12 seater plane and visited another falls, did some hiking and rock climbing - said the trip did involve a certain level of fitness but they thoroughly enjoyed the day.
*** Marisol that handled the excursions for Nolitours was a true GEM!!
Each night they had the usual shows but the quality was actually pretty good. just sometimes went on a little too long was all. the activities group around the pool were fun without being overbearing. lots of folks took party in their games and water aerobics.

we didn't do alot of shopping but you'll find pearl items available at incredible prices. i paid about $12.50USD for a pair of pearl & corral earrings and my girlfriends each found stunning pearl rings for about $50USD each at a little pearl shop we were taken to on the Discover Margarita tour ($40USD for the day). coffee is, indeed, difficult to find. i ended up buying it at the resort ($40BF/pound... which was $10USD) but our excursion rep brought us some 200g packages of ground espresso for $1 USD/each at the end of the trip, so it's definitely out there. prices at the malls are high - just like back home. also, the little shop at the resort is crazy pricey... a can of pringles is $15BF which is as much as $7USD depending on how you exchanged your funds! and the prices seemed to change from day to day depending on who was at the til.

*** wait til you're there to exchange your US dollars!** and speak to your rep about where to go for the best rate. if you deal with a bank or currency exchange you'll only get just over 2:1 but there are many places to get 4 or 5:1 exchange. if you do that, then you'll find the trip is FAR less costly while you're there.


it's currently 157 Bolivares Fuerte /adult and breaks down to $111BF and $46BF (it's 2 separate taxes and must be paid separately, with exact change). if you get a 4-1 exchange you're only paying about $40USD rather than $73 USD. it's a bit challenging to get small denominations of the BF so i'd suggest you work on trying to do so early on and tucking what you need aside in your room safe.

OVERALL..... no major complaints about the Dunes. I'd have no trouble recommending it at all and would even consider returning. i tend to visit new places on each trip as there are so many places in the world to see i dont often entertain "do overs". next time i may try Laguna Mar, just for the experience. some of the service staff were a bit lacking in attention but this wasn't a 5star either. you get what you pay for, to a degree. the weather was great... yes, we had some rain, but it was a welcome respite from the heat for awhile and rarely lasted very long. temps were over 30C daily and humidity ran about 90% so be prepared for that if you go, find yourself a couple of brits and settle in for some relaxation and laughs! your holiday will be what you make it. i'm more than happy to answer any questions that i may have neglected to cover here. cheers!

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"ripped off noulitours"

Dunes Beach Resort
User Rating:  	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  warren  on Jun 2, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Mar, 2010 | Leisure | Solo
558 people found this review helpful

rooms are horrible took my money for a jeep tour overbooked no refund this although it was promised crooked place debbie is dishonest are something as gone wrong does anyone know name ofthey guy who sell jeep tours in the hotel complete asshole promised a refund he is money exchanger

Your Arrival:
slow,keys do not room room smells welcome stol in the toilet

sticky musty toilets do not work

Restaurants and Bars:
horrible horrible bad food

nothing special

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
enjoy the garabage throught the island just dumped along the roads
do not believe what some people are saying interested in the truth

Other Comments:
who cares

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"Interesting but will not return"

Dunes Beach Resort
User Rating:  	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 3.0 of 5

Posted by:  vickie  on Feb 13, 2011  >  2 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2011 | Leisure | With Group
561 people found this review helpful

Hi just returned from the island of Margarita where we spent a week at the Dunes resort rated as a four star. The resort it self was clean. The pool was clean the view was great.and the food ok. The staff although friendly spoke little or no english making it difficult. The Nolitour reps were helpful and very well spoken and knowledgeable. The animation staff was not too active running the same games each day and sometimes not much at all. The evening shows were all spanish and somewhat boring and not as colourful as other places. The weather was unbeatable with a little rain one day. The buffet was smaller than some but the restaurant by the water had items from the menu available . Canadians are a minority here with a large spanish contingent. The country is very dry and desertlike. There is a lot of garbage every where when you are off the resort. You cant walk around with anything valuable as it is not safe. You can easily see the whole island in a day which is a worth while trip to take. We were glad to have experienced it but would not go back . The airport security checks are very long as well. It would probably be rated at a three star.

Room Number:

Room Block:
older section

Arrived by Canjet. Good foood and flight. Airport cleared quite quickly

We Wre in the older esction near the main lobby. We had a small balcony and we outlooked the back of the resort. We were by the road and it was very noisy with a speed bump near us. The room was clean but the bathroom was very old looking. Maid service was great

Restaurants and Bars:
There were seven bars which alternated in when they were open.The bar staff did not bspeak english or understand much so a drink which was fruity was out of the question because they did not know what you meant.There were three restaraunts . One was open for breakfast two for lunch and two a dinner time.Breakfast was about the same each day but the egg guy was very efficient. The alacarte was ok but portions were very small. The beach restaurant offered items fron the menu such as hamburgers and fries.

Ther was a very large clean warm pool. The grounds were very well kept with beautiful flowers in a variey of colours.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
There was very little daily activities. water arobics seemed to be their favorite. There were lots of scheduled activities but not much happened. we booked a day trip through Walts jeep safari. We booked this prior to leaving and it was informative but somewhat long .

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"Great Safe Place to Explore the Island "

Dunes Beach Resort
User Rating:  	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  Jay  on Jan 9, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2011 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
494 people found this review helpful

Excellent place to go thats low profile to just relax and do your own thing. Lots of space so you never get that feeling of being crowded ever. If you think about booking; Book the 'Premium Suites' as they are new and the upgrade is worth every penny.

Room Number:

Room Block:
54-Premium Section

December 23, 2011

Departed: December 30th. It is a bit of a gong show at the airport. They search everything when departing. Be prepared for a bit of a wait and prepared to open your luggage. They search everything and everyone.

We stayed in a Premium Suite and not a single complaint. Marble modern bath, and a really nice smaller room with a fridge and private balcony overlooking the mountains. Gorgeous view. Tip in USD and your room will be spotless.

Restaurants and Bars:
Staff at the Tilapia (premium restaurant) were excellent. English is hard to come by but your in South America so it was not expected. They try to accomodate as much as they can. Very friendly.
The Shabono Bar on the Premium Side of the resort open from 6pm-11pm only by far made the best drinks of all the bars. We sat there nightly and lounged again in a very calm low profile atmosphere and just indulged in our surroundings. It is a very peaceful resort.

Pool on the premium suites side is really nice but was over loaded with screaming children so we opted for the beach and played in massive waves.
Our suggestion is to close one of the 3 pools off for adults only as there was no where to truly relax pool side without kids yelling.
We enjoyed the beach and it's massive waves no problem. Beaches on the island are not privately owned so its open for venders but politely say 'no thank you' and they leave you alone for the rest of your stay. They are friendly as well.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Did the Jeep Tour & Lagoon Boat Tour through the national park and it was spectacular. The guys operating the tour were fun and very relaxed and did the tour in English. Great way to see the diversity of the island.

Other Comments:
If you are used to 5 star Sandals or Beaches resorts where everything is illusion and picture perfect then this is not the resort for you. It is a beautiful well kept resort and extremely safe for all. Its spacious to take an evening walk to get away from it all. It makes for an excellent place to take in a breather without the snotty stereo typical resorters who dress up for a week to impress then go back to their blue collar jobs. No sarcasm ;)
I absolutely recommend this place despite the other reviewers and I'm well traveled but not a snotty 'resorter'.

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"Not at all a 4 star!"

Dunes Beach Resort
User Rating:  	Dunes Beach Resort Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  rosann  on Jan 8, 2012  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2012 | Leisure | Family and Kids
484 people found this review helpful

My kids and I stayed at Dunes over New Years eve for a week. The kids (teens, young adult) first got a standard room which was awful! The bathroom was dirty, there was no WAY I was going to let them stay there. Had them moved to a premium room which was better, BUT, even in the premium rooms: the toilets didn't flush well, their sink never worked, the towels and sheets were threadbare, and the bed and pillows were terrible.

There wasn't a real, proper fitness room, just an old fashioned weight room that looked like it was out of the 1950s. No hot tub, disappointing pools, the waves were ALWAYS to high to swim in the sea. The buffets lacked variety and there was NO seafood. Only one a la carte restaurant that wasn't even very good.

Most of the staff didn't speak English (fortunately I manage a bit of Spanish). The entertainment was a joke! - laughably amateurish shows! No interesting activities. The real clincher was we ALL got sick, even though we were very careful not to drink tap water, not even for brushing our teeth.

To top it off, because Venezuela is a military dictatorship, the National Guard searches every bag at departure so the tour operator made us be at the airport 4 hours in advance of our flight!

I would NEVER go back!

New section adequate, old section very subpar

Restaurants and Bars:
Not impressive. Boring buffets, only 2 choices for dinner. A la carte restaurant disappointing.

The beach was nice, but the waves are too high to swim

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Not much offered in the way of activities

Other Comments:
Very few staff members could speak English

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