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Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

uk
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Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

I'm looking at both resorts..

Our priorities are:

Peaceful day lounging at beach and pool (we have really stressful jobs and just want a quiet spot, ie no party crowds)

Nice restaurants

No rising at 5am for loungers (we went to Sandals Whitehouse and this was the case) We don't usually get up until 7 but would still like a bit of shade..

A nice Caribbean vibe

Any help would be appreciated

Cocoa Beach, Florida
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1. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

The ocean is rough at EPC and calm and perfect for swimming at CSA.

Plenty of chairs and floaties at CSA and the resort definitely has a tropical, Jamaican vibe. We have been to CSA 9x with another booked and always enjoy the food.

CSA has many more inclusions, including a great watersports program.

You can drink the water in Jamaica and there is no issue with food safety. Nor are there language barriers.

uk
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2. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

Thanks for the quick reply.

We have stayed at the beaches resort next door but didn't venture on to CSA

I have to admit the beach was lovely

Welland Ont
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3. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

We have been to CSA in Jamaica 2012 and EPC 2013. EPC in our experience fits your requirements best. The beach in Jamaica is a bit nicer with natural shade available but there is a constant stream of vendors and traveling musicians stopping by. Beach chairs are claimed early and we witnessed a few disagreements over "ownership" We had a beachfront , ground floor room with steps leading down from the patio/balcony to the beach, which was what we liked best about the property, however in a week we only received drink service once on the beach (with the flag provided) the rest of the time we fetched our own. Excellence has a very quiet beach with ample seating and thatched shade and we never had to get up early to find a nice spot. Either at the pool or on the beach we had a steady supply of drinks provided by wait staff. No vendors walking by. There are 6 restaurants in Couples, 3, require dinner reservations, and two are outside lunch time grills. There are nine restaurants in Excellence and non require a reservation. Food is often a personal opinion and Jamaica is usually considered better but we had no concerns with excellence and found it to be more then adaquate

Virginia
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4. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

When will you be traveling? I think flynfan was at CSA during the busy season, since we didn't experience many of the things they did.

We just returned from 10 days in May. Beach loungers were abundant, with many not taken all day. People did reserve the palapas (sp?) early, but loungers were available all day, both in the shade and in the sun. We never saw a disagreement over the loungers since they were so plentiful.

The green flag drink service worked well, but not as fast as going to the bar yourself. We never had a problem with getting drinks via the green flags and used that service many times.

The vendors are not allowed above the high tide line, so as long as you don't sit near there they can't come bother you. The musicians were allowed to play above the high water line, but who doesn't love a beach musician? :)

Only 2 restaurants at CSA require reservations, Lemongrass and Feathers. There are 2 outside grills, the Cabana Grill and Seagrapes Cafe. The 2 sit down restaurants are the Palms and Patois Patio.

We also stayed at Beaches next door and said we'd stay at CSA someday - and now we have! We loved it and plan to return.

We haven't been to EPC, so no comments there. Good luck with your decision!

Tampa, FL
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5. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

We've never had a problem getting a lounger at CSA, and we've been at peak season. Now shade can be a different story, but we don't often seek shade so for us that's not a big deal. Also only 2 restaurants at CSA require reservations, Lemongrass and Feathers. Patois is available for dinner and is great as well as the Palms, neither require reservations. You can also eat at the beach grill anytime. For lunch you can eat at the Cabana (beach grill), Patois, the Palms or Seagrapes Cafe. There is tons of great food at CSA in abundance. :)

Sans Souci...
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6. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

We've been to Excellence PC, not Couples SA...but have been to CSA's sister resort ~ Couples Sans Souci... which we absolutely love and have returned a number of times ~ we love the "laid-back" simple elegance that Couples maintain in Jamaica, but really did love the EPC experience in its own right, too. Perhaps that we only went once to EPC and more often to Couples SS... says more than anything else! ;-)

What I can say is that you would have only about 1/2 hour drive to the Excellence, compared to 90 minutes to CSA. EPC definitely has an upscale "Caribbean Vibe"... beautiful grounds... my profile pic is from the Beach Bar near our room in Building #3 @ EPC.

I would agree with the previous poster regarding the lack of vendors, plenty of towels and Excellent drink service at either the pool or beach at the Excellence. The meandering pool along the beach at EPC is wonderful, stretching almost half the length of the resort, as is the "Quiet" pool with it's tranquil atmosphere. Not sure how big or how many pools at CSA.

If you do feel as though you'd like to buy some trinkets, etc, you can walk up (north) the beach to a "complex" next door ~ with many various vendors' "shops" with a real variety of merchandise... and the vendors there will not harrass you at all while you browse. They do have some on site one night, as well, but we found those vendors tended to be a tad pushy.

We were delighted to find that the Excellence PC resort is a "true stand alone" (no other resorts at least a mile or so in either direction) Adult Only resort that is very "long and wide" ~ with the beach running along the whole "length" of the resort (CSA would be the same) Everywhere you went, you were not too far from the beach and the OceanViews. Some say the beach is rough... but we find it comparable to some days in Cayo Largo, Cuba.

We also liked the vast variety and number of a la carte restaurants ~ especially the "no reservations" system! Just show up, if there's a wait ~ you are given a remote beeper. Go to any one of the nearby bars, and order a drink while you wait ~ plus, you barely have time to finish your drink before you are "buzzed"!

The entertainment at Excellence Punta Cana is also top-notch! Never have we seen such professional shows, except for on a CruiseShip.

So, if you know what you are looking for, know what your "deal-breakers" are, and of course do your research, research, research... you can have a great time!

The airport was a total surprise to us in PC... very, very busy...but, we did not let it interfere with our terrific vacation! You can read our review of EPC, and if you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to pm!

;-)

Cocoa Beach, Florida
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7. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

We are not fans of the "food court" approach Excellence takes in their resorts and much prefer the emphasis on local ingredients and cuisine at Couples resorts.

We have never had an issue with loungers or floaties at CSA, no matter the time of year. Flag service has been fine for us and beach bars are always close by.

We are in the ocean a lot and the quality of the beach and ocean is very high on our list. CSA is one of the best resorts we have experienced (over the course of visiting the resort since 1989) for beach and ocean.

We really enjoy the vibe of 7 mile beach and the vendors are indeed not allowed to approach beyond the tide line so certainly easy enough to avoid.

We also MUCH prefer JA overall to the DR.

Sans Souci...
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8. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

"... not fans of the "food court" approach..." ~ That's a very interesting description... never looked at it that way ;-)

The funny thing is... (we find) the more that we've travelled.... the more we find and "know" what we "need and want" compared to what we can do without. It's almost as if one is "evolving".

As stated previously, "...Perhaps the fact that we only went once to EPC and more often to Couples SS... says more than anything else!..." For us right now, the "Couples" experience is what we want and need at this time in our lives... and may be the reason why we've never returned to the Excellence.

There are many similarities between the two companies' concepts... of treating Guests equally no matter the room category (no feelings of second-class citizens, at least for us), the "Welcome Home" atmosphere, the Room Service offered at all room categories, the Mini-bars in all room categories, etc. Yet the rooms themselves at Excellence are more up to date, not the more "relaxed caribbean chic" feel of Couples... although I much prefer the full bathroom with a solid door at Couples SS (not sure about CSA? in this?) as opposed to the more "open concept" of Excellence.

Another note... Excellence also has a huge garden/ponds complex with paths out front of the hotel for walking/running... and I understand CSA also has quite a beautiful Gym set up... not sure if the OP mentioned any need for that, though?

*...We also MUCH prefer JA overall to the DR.....* ~ totally in agreement with that statement, at this time in our lives!

;-)

Welland Ont
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9. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

While I can understand people defending a resort they love it is amusing that, even though the question was "Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC" some people chose to answer as experienced visitors while they have not been to both. If they have , then where is the review or forum posts as applicable. It sometimes looks like any time a negative comment is said about their favored resort they take it personal and have to defend their choice. It would be nice if people just supplied information as asked and from actual experience as that would serve the questions, but as I said it is amusing to read. I'm sure this will warrant some defensive comment.

Tampa, FL
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10. Re: Anyone been to Couples SA and Excellence PC?

"I'm sure this will warrant some defensive comment"..........I haven't been to Excellence and therefore didn't comment on that. I was however clearing up misrepresentations of CSA since I've been there several times, and then also clearing up incorrect information about the restaurants. Everyone is different so everyone will like different places, however I do want the OP to have accurate info to make an informed decision.:)