We flew out with Thomas Crook, the flight was uncomfortable and long. Me, my 14 year old daughter and her boyfriend.
Upon arrival we were checked into a room overlooking a helipad with no view as such. We had been booked for an ocean view room only to be told on arrival there were none available. The room was basic, 2 king sized beds and a shower room.
We were not advised that the hotel would be full of locals on the weekends. (we arrived on a saturday afternoon) we felt very intimidated and extremely uncomfortable due to this.
The food on offer was great, apart from michaelangelos, the cheese they use over there was vile. Edens Grill was fantastic, the buffet was outstanding.
The majority of staff were helpful and friendly. The beach was clean with an abundance of sun loungers.
The hotel grounds were clean and well kept and redecorating was being undertaken during our stay.
The Sinners barstaff were great fun, we made our way through the various cocktails on offer, one of the guys thought he was Tom Cruise but by night he is a priest.
The entertainement staff were off their heads on cocaine more often than not. We were offered drugs on many occasions, what they don't tell you is that if you are found in possesion of any drug, you face a minimum of 6 months in a dominican prison. We of course declined as drugs aren't our thing.
The room service was diabolical, we were only provided with 2 clean towels a day and were constantly having to ask for more towels which didn't always arrive. The bedding was only changed twice during our 2 week stay. We also had no toilet paper for 3 days as this wasn't topped up either. There was a lack of warm/hot water too. Our drinks fridge wasn't restocked daily as promised either. The patio doors onto the balcony were faulty and didn't always lock although the staff tried their best to remedy this. Our air conditioning packed up and it took 3 days for them to try to fix it, which they couldn't manage.
The attitudes of the reception staff is very unhelpful.
Having read other reviews on here I would like to state that on one occasion we mistakenly left our safe unlocked and the safe door wide open, there was a considerable amount of cash, 2 blackberry phones, an iphone, an ipod and our passports, my car and house keys and other personal belongings in there, the maids had been in and cleaned the room and the stuff in the safe remained untouched. I guess we were very lucky!
We spent alot of our time on the beach and in the sea or on excursions.
There are a team of some 40+ beach sellers offering a wide range of products, they hassle and hassle you until you agree to buy something from them.
There is a beach hut that plays music and offers activities such as snorkelling, banana boat rides, kayaking, catermaran and parasailing, these are all at an extra cost, the guys that run the hut are friendly, a bit too friendly, if you are a single lady as i am then they take a real shine to you and even propose marriage, One in particular wouldn't leave me alone, he is called Augusto.
Be careful health wise as HIV is rife in the dominican.
The hotel is well situated, 100 metres or so to the plaza, a small shopping complex that sells a variety of gifts, clothing, alcohol, toiletries etc. There are several excursion sellers too that hassle you to book trips through them, they are not all registered with Tourismo and don't all have the required papers and insurance.
We booked all our trips through a lovely american guy called James who has a flash office at the plaza, we spent a fair amount of time with James and he let us use his internet as the hotels internet wasn't working. We tried pizza hut one evening in the plaza, it is around the same price as it is in the UK although the quality of food isn't as good as the UK.
Despite the few niggles we enjoyed our stay and met some great people. I wouldn't say the hotel should be a 5 star, more a 3-4 star.
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Paradise Playa Dorada Hotel Puerto Plata
- Paradise Beach Club Puerto Plata
- Paradise Beach Resort Casino
- Paradise Beach Puerto Plata
- Paradise Beach Club Casino
- Grand Paradise Playa Dorada Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata