We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Looking For Some Resort Advice....

Which Punta Cana hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
New York
Level Contributor
156 posts
12 reviews
Save Topic
Looking For Some Resort Advice....

My wife and I, as well as some friends are traveling to Punta Cana during Presidents week in Feb. We know we are going because we already bought our airline tickets, but haven't decided on a resort yet. We are members of palace resorts and were planning at staying at their new Moon Palace resort, however there are construction issues. We know they are opening Jan. 10 and we are not arriving until Feb. 14, but we have already heard that certain things are not going to be available (casino, golf, pool bars). We were now looking into different resorts to go to instead, but really don't know much about the area. We are in our late 20's - early 30's and have traveled to many all inclusive resorts. We usually stay at adults only resorts because we are mostly all teachers and like a little change of "scenery" when we are away. If anyone has a little advice about some resorts we can look into or any new updates about the moon palace it would be greatly appreciated. thanks


Level Contributor
3,649 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

Hi Huey.

I think that seeing the moon palace open by then will be a push. check out some of the threads on it by putting moon palace in the search bar for the punta cana forum.

If you want a true adult only resort, you could look into the Excellence. There are several people here on this board that swear by this resort. While I have never been to this particular resort, I would say that we would not be interested ONLY because the beach is not the white beaches of bavaro..and the water can be SO much rougher. If this is not an issue for you ..then I would seriously consider looking at it. Check the reviews on it..

There are also several with adult only "bolt on's" That is ..an adult only section within a resort.

The one that I have personal exp with is the Catalonia Royal. They have a great pool of their own..a very nice restaurant..adult only part of the beach..and excellent food and service.

I am sure that others will pipe in with some of the other adult options.

Cheers and have a great KID FREE holiday..lol..god knows teachers deserve a break no matter how much they care for their "kids"


Mountain Top...
Level Contributor
605 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

In my opinion i believe the word "Bolt-ons" isn't a word i would describe some of the adults only resorts. Some of the resorts are separate resorts. I don't think you could call The Royal Suites Turquesa a "Bolt-on" as its separate from the Palladium has its on pools,bars,restaurants,beach,lobby etc..its also advertised by itself. I believe all them amenities make that a true adults only.

Chester, United...
Level Contributor
59,620 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....


I would certainly suggest you have a look at Punta Cana's #3 Resort [based on TA's Popularity Index], Excellence which is a true adult only resort.

Excellence is a class act and although some say it is expensive they have no problem getting people to go there - in life you get what you pay for and most of us want any holiday or vacation to be something special and trouble free. The one thing that is certain is that you will be made to feel very special indeed and you will take away many happy memories.

We returned back from a repeat trip to EPC in late September - we loved it so much when we first went in September last year we decided to make a return trip. I will admit we were a little apprehensive about our return trip as we had had such a great time last year and some of the reviews in the lead up to our trip had not been that good – we should not have been concerned as we had an even better holiday this year.

We have also been to their other two resorts in Mexico and loved those as well – in fact we have already booked to go back to Excellence Playa Mujeres next May and have also just booked to return to EPC next September as the place feels like our ‘’segunda casa’’. We are eagerly waiting on news of their new resort at Oyster Bay, Jamaica which is due to open late in 2009.

The main problem with the poor reviews has been a mixture of the food not being to people’s liking and the bugs – the latter not just being a problem that Excellence has alone but other resorts do as well – it is a tropical island. Whilst we are at the resort they were spraying up to four times a day to knock down the population and were quite willing to spray people’s room/balcony if they wanted them to. To be fair we did not really have too much of a problem with the mosquitoes and the numerous people we met were split between those who didn’t like us and some who had been quite badly bitten.

As mentioned in my latest review whilst at the resort I had a long meeting with Jose the Food & Beverage Director for Excellence Group who was visiting the resort along with the owners during our stay as he was interested to hear my thoughts as a repeat visitor to EPC and having been to their other two resorts in Mexico.

I am pleased to say that he and owners have already seen that they need to raise the bar with regards to food choice, standards and presentation and some guests have not been happy with what was on offer. Excellence Group have not taken kindly to EPC being moved down to #3 place in TA popularity index and have no intention of letting it stay there and have now brought across from Spain a new Food & Beverage Manager to assist them in this task.

The problem with food quality, variety and the way it is cooked is that it can be very subjective with lots of people having different views on what good and bad is. Whilst I would agree that the food at Excellence is not the same as you would get in a top restaurant in the States or here in the UK it was very good in comparison to the other four resorts we have stayed at in Dominican Republic.

If you have a look at Tripadvisor’s own Traveller’s Choice Awards for 2008 you will see that I am not alone in thinking that Excellence is a great place:


you will see that Excellence Punta Cana came:

#3 in "The 25 Most Popular Destinations - World"

#1 in "Best Pool in Latin America/Caribbean"

#7 in "Best for Romance - World"

#3 in "Best for Romance - Latin America/Caribbean"

Also if you have a look at my review and the 250 photographs which are attached you should get a good feel for what the resort is like:


Their website which again contains a vast amount of information can be found at:


Yes, Excellence is a little remote/isolated being about an hour and a bit, sometimes bumpy ride from the airport. Please be aware because Excellence is in the Uvero Alto area of the island that if you want to go on any trips or go shopping this will involve some additional travel – it is the sort of place that people go to and stay on resort so if you are not that sort of person Excellence may not be for you.

The beach at Excellence is great as you will see from my photographs. The resort sits in it’s own bay and you can walk for miles in either direction without seeing another resort. However, the ocean can sometimes be rough and as a result is often red/black flagged so if you want a resort where you can swim in the ocean a lot Excellence is not the place for you.

As far as the entertainment is concerned it is not what I would call lively as most people are there to chill out and have a romantic time so if you are looking for a resort with more action again this may not be the place for you.

In addition to the nightly shows/entertainment, which are very good, there is live music before and after the evening entertainment – there is also a disco and casino on site as well – please note however that at present the casino is closed for refurbishment.

There are an ever increasing number of other Adult Only Resorts in the area, some of which are newer, cheaper, are a little closer to the airport and have far calmer water. Some of these are what I call "bolt ons" in that they are a component/section of a much larger resort. Some have more separate identities and are even advertised in their own right but still share some facilities with a neighbouring much larger resort. The main thing is to fully check out the facilities on offer as although they may advertise a large range of restaurants, pools, bars, etc not all may be Adult Only. Overall some you may want to look at are Punta Cana Princess, Catalonia Royal, Majestic Elegance, Iberostar Grand & Grand Palladium Royal Suites Turquesa.

Excellence suited us and it may suit you – it is not perfect, no resort is, so have a look at it and see what you think.

Montreal, Canada
Destination Expert
for Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Level Contributor
5,829 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

An option for you would be to have the best of both worlds.

Punta Cana Princess is a very nice adults only resort on a great stretch of beach. Not bad on the budget if that is a consideration. It is very small and friendly and not overly luxurious. This to me was a great feature because I always felt at home and never out of place, but if you are looking for a ritzier resort, this might not be the place. It is a very quiet resort but right next door you have complete access to the Caribe Princess and Tropical Princess where the are fun activities, it is livlier, extra choice of dining options, more pools, great evening shows followed by a lobby party. Very casual and fun. The grounds are gorgeous, clean, staff friendly.

It is no secret that I found the Caribe Princess perfect for me, but when I did stay at the Punta Cana Princess I loved the flexibility of having the ultra quiet adults only resort as my homebase and when I felt like it, or needed it, I went next door for more "action".

Level Contributor
15,323 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

Excellence, Punta Cana Princess, Gran Bahia Amber and the new Majestic Elegance are good choices.

New York
Level Contributor
156 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

Thanks for the great advice... i have been spending hours researching thanks to everyone's help. I am def. looking forward to a great trip.... no matter what resort it will be at. If anyone has any other advice... its appreciated!

thanks again!

7. Re: Looking For Some Resort Advice....

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 01 October 2009, 01:15