My friends and I recently returned from a 6 day, 5 night stay at this absolutely stunning resort. I am well versed in traveling to all inclusive properties and this was one of the best I have been to.
IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU BRING PLENTY OF SUN SCREEN FROM HOME. A 6oz bottle of Coppertone was $25 U.S. dollars. They will rob you blind with the price of sun screen so pack way more than you need.
As for the resort itself, let me start by saying that the food is definitely sub par, but I have certainly had worse. By the end of the trip, two out of four of us were literally running to the bathroom after taking our last bite of food. If you are selective of what you eat and stick to eating the delicious fresh fruit and a few other basics you should be fine.
The resort features restaurants that require a reservation, providing the illusion that you are eating something special; something above and beyond the typical buffet. I can assure you this is not the case. Beginning around 7:30am you will see a line of people in the Hotel lobby waiting with bated breath to make a reservation. Do not waste your time. The only "restaurant" worth while is the Italian fare and even in that case I ordered pizza which was readily available at all times in other locations. The pizza and fresh fruit were my staples throughout the trip -- I highly recommend the same! One final thought: the Mexican restaurant was downright vile; do NOT go there.
As for the positives: I have never seen a resort so clean. Every morning I walked past dozens of staff members scrubbing the grounds with soap and power washers. The rooms were clean as well and our refrigerator was stocked every day with big fresh bottles of spring water. Side note: drinking the water in the DR is perfectly fine.
The landscaping is picturesque and available space to lay by one of the 3 pools was plentiful. The beach is a bit of a hike from the rooms (5-10 minute walk) but they have a shuttle running throughout the day and night that will drop you off right there. As for the beach itself: stunning. In my experience at this resort there was no need to get up early to reserve chairs -- there were always plenty of loungers available. True to form you will find the occasional solicitor asking to braid your hair, as well as pesky resort employees persistently harassing you about taking one of their excursions. That is to be expected and can be brushed off by simple avoidance or just tell them no thanks!
There is definitely a language barrier at this resort. English fluency is extremely scarce so I would recommend brushing up on some Spanish speaking basics before you leave.
Overall, it was a lovely trip. You really can't beat the value for the price we paid and this is a resort I would definitely return to.
(AGAIN, BRING YOUR OWN SUN SCREEN)!!
- Also Known As:
- Ifa Hotel Punta Cana
- Ifa Villas Bavaro
- Ifa Hotel Bavaro
- Ifa Bavaro Villas
- Ifa Villas Bavaro Beach Resort & Spa
- Ifa Villas Bavaro Beach Resort
- Villas Bavaro
- Ifa Villas
- Ifa Villas Bavaro Punta Cana
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- IFA Villas Bavaro Resort & SPA is situated on the fine, white sands of Playa Bavaro. Bordered by a fabulous coral reef and surrounded by turquoise-colored waters this extraordinary vacation complex offers its guests a friendly, luxurious environment for sports & cuisine with its 6 charming restaurants and 7 spectacular bars, colorful tropical shows, a wide range of facilities and services especially designed to ensure an unforgettable stay right in heart of the Caribbean. ... more less
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