My wife and I took a one-week trip to Bahia Principe at the end of May. Like lots of other reviewers, we read some really negative reviews and were worried. But let me tell you, this resort is awesome, and here's why:
1. It's in the middle of nowhere. For people that want to be in the city and surrounded by hustle and bustle, this isn't the place. If you are like my wife and I, you will thoroughly enjoy the secluded, quiet confines of Principe La Romana. We wanted a vacation where we could completely relax. That's exactly, completely, and thoroughly what we got when we arrived.
2. The grounds and the lobby are absolutely beautiful. Once you step off your shuttle/taxi, you'll be welcomed to the resort by broad, sun-soaked marble lobby accented by the melodies of songbrids singing away in the rafters of the lobby roof. The lobby gives way to a long, peaceful walk between rows of rooms to the pool, and beyond, the beach. The sense that you are on a real Caribbean vacation as soon as you set foot on the marble steps leading into the lobby.
3. The pool is everything you want for a place that you'll spend a lot of time at. There are plenty of seats; there wasn't a day that we couldn't find a lounge chair to spend the day in. Palm-thatched tiki umbrellas provide shade for lots of seats....we usually strolled out to the pool around 10:30 and were able to find shady spots. There were always spots open at the swim-up bar, and we never had to wait long to get our drink of choice.
4. There are always activities going on. Even though the resort grounds are pretty isolated from the nearest town/city, within the resort there is always something fun going on. The animation (recreation) staff are always running competitions, teaching dance lessons, or encouraging guests to try a new activity, wether it be bocce, petanque, beer pong, water polo or volleyball. At night, the dancing begins before dinner in the lobby and continues on into the early hours across the street in the discoteque.
5. The rooms are plenty big for couples, and have plenty of water. My wife and I loved that we had a king-size bed, a full couch, a small table with chairs and a patio with another chair/table set. We never felt cramped. Also, each day we had three huge bottles of cold water to take with us.
6. There's always plenty of food, and a pretty good variety of it. I rate the food a step above cruise ship fare, while my wife rated it at the same level as cruise food. Here's a couple of things I really enjoyed about our dining experiences....first, there were so many options of interesting and unique foods that pleased Dominicans and Europeans. Americans like us might have looked at some of the eats and thought, "Hey, that looks weird." But the truth is, there are so many people there from all around the world that the spread of interesting food makes total sense. If you want to play it safe, there's plenty of food every meal that you'll feel comfortable with. Also, the water in the dining rooms is totally safe to drink. The wine always flows. Beer is plentiful.
7. The beach area is very relaxing. Palm trees lean lazily towards the water. Palm thatch umbrellas provide shade against the sun. A small bar offers plenty of drinks. And most of all, the beach isn't that busy! When you are sitting there with your significant other on one side of you and a cold beer in the other, you really feel like you are in a Corona commercial. It's pretty awesome.
8. Bahia Principe truly is a cross-cultural experience. We met people from France, Canada, Germany and Russia. Also, all of the staff speak Spanish while some speak a little English. You really are in another country when you are at the Principe, and my wife and I thought a that was an amazing experience. I rarely speak Spanish, but what language I do know came pouring out while I was there. Normally, you'd think that having to come out of your cultural shell would be kind of a pain on vacation, but at this resort its totally an enjoyable experience.
So you're thinking, there's got to be some drawbacks to this place, right? Well, my wife and I agree that the water isn't the crystal clear paradise ocean that you'd normally associate with the Caribbean. But hey, this is the information age, and anyone heading to the Bahia La Romana should already know that the water is murky. That's the biggest drawback to the place.
The second is that, if you are looking to go into a town at night, this isn't the place. But both my wife and I valued the seclusion.
Third, my wife thought the drinks were pretty sweet. Other people have mentioned the same things. I didn't really care....my favorite cocktail was the Bahia Principe...plenty of alcohol!
Our tip for going is this: brush up on your Spanish. A little bit of Spanish goes a long way in not only easing the communication between you and the staff, but also it gives you a way to connect to people that you'd never connect with if you went on a vacation in the United States!
And that leads me to my final point....my wife and I flew from Orlando, booked a shuttle, and stayed at the resort for seven days. All of that cost us $1498. That's perhaps the biggest benefit of the Bahia Principe...you get all the food you want, all the culture you want, all the beauty you want, all the sun you want, all the drinks you want and all the relaxation you want for $1500. You just can't beat that. Seriously. Where are you going to get a deal like that?
I'm more than happy to answer any questions you have, so send me a message. Happy traveling!
We got a room in building 21, and that was a pretty good spot. Close to the lobby and close to the p...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC