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Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

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Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

Hello all,

New member here. After spending the better part of the day (and night) reading TripAdvisor reviews and this forum, I thought I’d ask you helpful folks for some advice.

Short version: 23 year old man going to PC for 9 nights in mid August. Looking for relaxation during the day, nightlife/dancing/being social in the evening/night. Trying to decide between Excellence and Secrets (or something else all together) and wondering what to expect from the resort nightlife and non-resort clubs (Imagine, Oro, etc.) this late in the summer.

Long version (apologies, it's very long):

I’m a 23 year old man looking to take a 9-night solo vacation from work, likely to Punta Cana, in mid to late August - very last minute, I know.

I’ll be traveling alone and looking for rest & relaxation (swimming, eating, reading, drinking - not necessarily in that order…) during the morning and afternoon and more of a nightlife/dancing/clubbing vibe in the evening and night. I’m always interested in meeting people and would prefer an adults-only location with a crowd skewing more toward the younger side (if possible in August). Would like to keep it under $350/night but could certainly stretch for the right place.

A non-exhaustive list of things I’d like to do during the days: golf (maybe once, at most, twice), scuba/snorkeling/diving, deep sea fishing, basketball, bicycling.

After reading reviews, these seem like my main options:

Excellence (#11 per TripAdvisor, ~$235/night)

Secrets Royal Beach (#9 , ~$260)

Majestic Colonial (#17, ~$215)

Please let me know if I’m missing anything that may be a good fit.

Just from reading reviews and noting its strong presence on the forum, Excellence would be my slight first choice to Secrets. I’m sure both would be wonderful from the relaxation and socializing standpoint. I wonder, though, is there a material difference between the two for nightlife and dancing? And if it is not prevalent at either, would it be important to be closer to some of the non-resort clubs in PC (Google Maps seems to think it would take ~30 minutes to get to Imagine Punta Cana Disco from Excellence and only ~10 minutes from Secrets)? Or is the town even very active this late in summer?

Apologies for the length of this message and thank you for making it this far - I wanted to be as specific as possible to make it easier to answer, but I have been told I ramble…

Anyway, I’d be thrilled to hear the community’s advice, even if it is to pivot and consider another destination (though I am very excited about this!).

Thank you!


p.s. I’m so grateful for all the advice I’ve read already on this site, both reviews and answers to questions here - I can’t wait to become more active and leave reviews! Everything from “bring extra sunscreen” (will have to find some in the airport as I won’t be checking) to pre-buying the tourist card online has been immensely helpful for a trip that I should have prepared for months ago!

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1. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

Welcome to the forums ACJ,

I'm sorry to say but some of your choices might not be the most ideal for a 23 year old that is seeking nightlife and stuff along with relaxation etc.

One thing that is important to keep in mind is the location of resorts.. Some are far every from everything and it's expensive taxi fares to get to places while other resorts are very close where you can just walk out the main gate and have different options of bars/ shopping, restaurant, etc.

For example Excellence... It's up North in Uvero Alto..with nothing really around it... Sure you can purchase a drink package for Imagine that includes transportation to and from the resort, but will you just be going to Imagine each and every night?

The closet place to Excellence is Oro at Hard Rock. where it's likely a 20-25$ taxi each way just to get to.. then cover and pricey drinks unless you get a drink wristband but even at that is expensive. Oro is not open every night neither (Tue to Sat).. After that you have to go into the El Cortecito area where there is different bars, mangu, local bars, beach bars and stuff... That is likely around $40 each way in taxi from Excellence.

As for Excellence itself I can't comment on as I have not been but from lots of reading it does not sound like a place where you would find lots of younger crowds.. Maybe more younger couples/groups of them which is still always fun but it does all depend on who is at the resort same time as you. If worse case is it's not really for you at night then consider the expensive taxis fares just to get to anywhere else at night.

Where Secrets on the other hand is in the Los Corales area and your very close to all kinds of things off resort... Go hang out at a beach bar, go to a local place, go to a club wtv your in a good location for that as you can see on this map


Again can't comment on Secrets as I have not been there but can say that all the nighttime stuff is mostly over at the Now which you have access to.


Out of curosity have you looked at Bahia Ambar? think it might suit your needs as thats a small adults section with a big mega complex of 4 other Bahia resorts just outside of the Ambar section.

You would have that relaxation you want, top shelf liquor, butler service, ala cartes each night, pool/drink service.. etc, etc,

Most importantly you have access to all the other sections of the Bahia.. so during the day if your looking for something a bit more lively a 1 min walk from the Ambar section your at the big main pool of the Bahia where it's a very lively atmosphere and tons of 20 something guests having a good time.

When it gets to much you just retreat back to the Ambar section.

Bahia at night is a lively resort - you can go to 6am if you really wanted to... They have an entire section just for the nightlife stuff that all resort section share called Pueblo Principe... In the Pueblo there is shopping, casino, outdoor stage where housebands play some nights other nights is games/dancing and drink service... There is also sports/karaoke bar and the disco.

The disco is bigger then most "on resort" discos that don't allow the public in.. Fairly busy each night, open to 2am and drinks are included. Afterwards there is a late night snack bar open to 6am that serves beer and can get lively depending on the crowd that goes once the disco closes.

The great thing about Bahia is that your never bored always something do, especially for 20-30s guests that looking for a more lively atmosphere... The disco is decent and better then some other resort discos where your lucky to have 10 people in them cause there small or so other resorts charge for their drinks.

On the days that you do want to go off resort at night your a couple min taxi to Oro at Hardrock, 12ish minute taxi into El Cortecito area with local bars, beach bars, Mangu nightclub,

Just down the street from there is Jewel nightclub and after that Imagines.


Magestic would provider more of a younger crowd as well and is a smaller complex then the huge Bahia.. believe there disco is open till 4am.. As far as going off resort from there Majestic is next to Bahia with an empty lot in between them so the time frames I listed above about going off resort from Bahia is very similar.

Just a suggestion for you!

Edited: 07 August 2014, 09:22
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2. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

Looks like some dates end of Aug/Sept Ambar is sold out.

BUT you can stay in the Esmeralda section which is the luxury family section.. same deal as Ambar section top shelf, ala cartes each night, butler service, etc, etc, etc And of course access to everything else so you can always spend time in Ambar section as well if you want

Found a crazy deal for you to... Cheaper then just your hotel prices you listed and this is for direct flights and hotel.

Aug 26 to Sept 4th

Direct flights from JFK on Jet Blue

9 nights at Esmeralda.

Total 1477.40$

Thats like 164$ per night including your flight lol... You still need to pay a transfer from airport to hotel and back (taxi is 38$ each way)... transfers 60 to 70 roundtrip.

Anyways it's on travelocity.com.

On the last page just above credit card details it says "enter promo code"..... put in SUMMER100 which knocks off 100$ and brings the price from 1577 to 1477$

Here is a screen shot of the booking, flights and price


Edited: 07 August 2014, 09:55
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3. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

Short version: agree with Bigjim that you should look at Bahia Ambar. Welcome! And have great trip!

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4. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)


I have been to The Bahia Ambar, Majestic, and excellence (this past May)

Excellence is more for romantics although there is plenty of things to do. They have the best Gym I have seen in the PC. If you were going with a significant other I would Highly recommend Excellence.

The Ambar has a great party atmosphere and is closer to off resort nightlife. Excellence would be too far away for off resort nightlife. There are 5 resorts in the Bahia complex and problably more opportunity to meet someone your age level to hang around with.

The Majestic would fit the bill also .

Of the three mentioned I think the Bahia would be more favorable place for you.

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5. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

One thing I forgot to mention. The Ambar pool can be lively in the day time. For night life you would hop on the tram and go a short ride to the Bavaro or principe for the night activities. The Ambar turns into a soft ,relaxing spot at night with Jazz and just lounging around.

6. Re: Advice for PC trip (newcomer)

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