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Grand Paradise Playa Dorada
Ranked #8 of 40 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Reviewed 21 February 2011

My husband, son and brother-in-law spent 7 nights at the resort the Feb. 5th - 12th. It more than met our expectations. The staff were so helpful and pleasant. The beach was beautiful and the view of the mountain where the cable car operated was a wonder to see. Many enjoyed walking the beach including ourselves. Food was good and quite a variety. Drinks were plentiful. As for tips, we did tip the housekeepers, but did not tip the bartenders and wait staff. It did not seem to have an effect of the service we received. Our trip to the cable car was made at the resort. It was cheaper than taking a tour of places not interested in seeing. Our ride from the airport to the resort and back through Viator website and also the dinner/show at Ocean World "Bravissimo" were prearranged. The dinner and show were excellent. The other selections we made were the Yasika Adventure Zip Line tour and Outback Safari tour. Both were wonderful experiences and the guides were very helpful and answered questions about the country. All rides were on time and drivers were very good and pleasant.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Judy615
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 February 2011

Hotel: This was my third trip to The Domnincan Republic. This hotel is the saddest thing I've ever been to. When I booked this hotel, I though it was renovated in 2008.... The lack of service at the front desk is the first impression that hit's you when you arrive. Travelling for 17 hours you would expect that the staff makes sure that everything is working in your room. But no..... No AC, telephone and remote control. They sort of made the AC work by leaving a permanent card in the holder, but changing the temperature up/down was not possible so I had to get up during the night to turn it off. After a week the AC completely stopped working. They didn't try to fix the AC again, and the telephone was still not working when I checked out. After 4 days I got a terrible cold. Maybe from the disfunctional AC, I don't know. I gave the cleaning lady a small tip every day, and leaving her a note and an additional tip, I also got the Coke Light that I wanted. Otherwise you got Sprite or Coke. A lot of the male workers are awful. They should behave in a professional way, not try to ask guests out, making unpleasant remarks and stare.
Pool: They really need to change the tiles in the pool. It's not nice.

Beach: Super beach. Not white sand, but ok. Jogging in the morning on the beach is wonderful. Starting at 6:45 am is perfect. To be able to get a sun bed, leave your towel on one early in the morning between 7 and 8 am. The only truble that might occur, is when someone steels your towel. Then you will have to pay $ 15 to get a new one. That had to happen to me of course. Exhausting with all the people that are trying to sell you stuff all the time.

Other guests: Too many drunk Canadians. I do like to party, but it get's really annoying when large groups of boys age 18-24 are extremely loud and splashing water on other guests and finally lying around the pool passed out before 3 pm, fighting during night etc. The hotel does clearly take no responsibility when people get that drunk.

Food and services in the restaurants: The buffet: You can always find something to eat.... Too little variety. The food didn't always feel fresh. The vegetables and pasta were always boiled to death. Different food often got empty. Lousy service, even with tipping and friendly smiles and chatter.
Al a carte: Two different restaurants with almost the same, boring food. Why do they try to make Italian cousine when it's that poorly made?

Disco: Too much Dominican music og old American hits from the 70's and 80's. Not much people going there. More action at the Coco Bongo at the Plaza.

All in all......... Save yourself the agony. Don't go here. There are other hotels that are much better than this one. This is just too budget hotell. Not a four star. But if you are looking for a budget hotel whith poor service, food and a lot of alcohol, then go for it.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled solo
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3  Thank CoctailsAndDreams
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 February 2011

There are a number of odd things about this place that threaten to ruin a vacation if you don't know about them (which I didn't.) If you follow these carefully you can have a great time. Skip the buffet and make 7 PM reservations for the Michelangelo's ASAP upon arrival. (Unfortunately, this is not as easy as it sounds.) Bring extra towels (for the room). Upgrade to oceanview. Tip the watersports staff. They are great. Stay away from anyone wearing a badge that says "travel concierge" or "vacation concierge" Bring extra toiletries. Don't worry about getting up at 7 AM to stake out your claim for beach chairs. There appear to be enough. Just be prepared to drag them to your preferred destination.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank foodjack45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2011

my wife and i stayed feb 10 to 17th and im not sure what all to say. to start check in was handled great they had everyones paperwork ready to go so it went very quickly. we were in a standard room which is a bed room and a bathroom for me this was just fine. the rooms are very clean and nice and bright. the grounds are nicely kept and everything is actually closer than it looks on the map one end to the other in 3-4 minutes (hand after too many cervases). edens grill was the best food (ala carte) the buffet was good, it is understaffed but they do work hard just dont be in a rush just enjoy the view of the ocean which is right there. the italian alacarte was ok, i prefered the buffet. the beach is amazing if you want to do some snorkelling there is a reef 20 feet from shore just around the point where the gran vantanna beach chairs start. i didnt see to many shows as i had to much fun all day with the many friends i made there what i did see was very entertaining. last but far from least was the staff i didnt run into one single person that didny greet me with an hola or at least a smile i am not sure where some of the people that reviewed here actually went but it wasnt the same place i am sure because i love it here and will no doubt be returning next year. just for reference of all the people i met i didnt hear a single complaint about anything more than hangovers. any questions just ask i would be glad to answer .

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank scottdrakeLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2011

A group of us went here - Jan. 26th - Feb. 2nd, 2011. My husband and I had no problems at all, nothing bad to say.
FOOD - Always able to find something to eat - GREAT french fries by the way.
DRINKS - Beer is actually not bad ( can't handle to many fruit drinks)
ROOM - Bed & pillows are very comfortable and room is cleaned very well.
SERVICE - Hit and miss but give them some $$ and they are right there at your beck
and call. Staff are very friendly.
ENTERTAINMENT - Always activites to participate in and being put on by staff .

The only problem that we had, was not with the resort, it was with the other vacationers. And, I am ashamed to say there were from Canada - but let me clarify this a bit better, they were Quebec Canadians/ French Canadians. We talked to some other travelers from Sweden and aboard and they brought this to our attention on how rude the Quebec/French Canadians really are - funny thing, we had the same problem when we went to Vennezuela 4 years ago. Quebec Canadians.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank elmbar123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2011

Can't understand some of the bad reviews on here.
Yes we had a few problems,but every holiday there are a few minor problems and the hotel were very quick to sort them out for us !!! the bottle of rum and fruit basket to say sorry was a nice touch !!!
So here goes the quick review !
Room was great very clean,very comfy bed !!
Food was good great choice, try the italian restuarant good meal with waiter service !!
Bars were good think between us we tried all the cocktails !!! The local beer is great that good bought the t-shirt lol !!
Pool was great !!
Beach well what can you say FANTASTIC !!!!!
Staff all good our maid was fantastic !!
Would we go again YES we would !!

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled with family
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3  Thank teaparty40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 February 2011

I had a great time and experience at this resort.

Feb 3rd -10th

Like most people on TA I was skeptical after reading some reviews, but ultimatly realized that some people are far too hard to please. As has already been said, Flights are out of the resorts hands, DomRep is in the Carribean so there will be bugs, the pool is outside so it may have leaves floating in it... ect, ect, ect

Our Vacation was amazing, It was everything we wanted it to be and more. We filled it with drinks, excursions, and sun.
Im pretty easy to please, this is my first all inclusive. I have backpacked throughout the world including hostels in Mexico so I can adapt pretty well to any surroundings, therefore you wont see me nitpicking the small things.

It is a large resort with fairly new rooms and furnishings. My gf and I were not going to spend time in our room and therefore didnt really care what it looked like. It was cleaned every day, and restocked.
Minor Complaint:
-the matress to me felt like a futon mattress... to me it wasnt a bother
-Had to swtich rooms cause our safe wasnt working, and on holidays you want to use a safe for your passport, cash, ID, Cameras...

Beach was awesome, best beach along Playa Dorada. Vendors left you alone if you said no.

Food, the 2 a la carts appeared to serve the same thing but with different names. I found the buffet had enough variety to be able to always find something to eat. There were a few days where the food was repetitive.
People compalined about things being left out too long or cold... This resort has like 18 buildings, hundreds of people... its going to happen, just get there early.

Minor complaint-
Because they have to switch things over from lunch to dinner there are times when you cant find anything to eat (430-6pm) which can be hard when you come home from an excursion at that time. But you can buy a bag of chips from the store in the lobby.
With hundreds of people finishing dinner at different times in buffet, you'll have to hunt for cutlery which isnt a problem..

The swim up bar is located in the shade, which didnt seem to deter people from spending time there. It was always full.

Evening entertainment wasn't super great but it killed time. I wasnt expecting Vegas or Cirque du solei...

We travelled with Nolitours and the reps were great at helping translate spanish, they spoke 3 or 4 languages. They also have great knowledge of the tours and excursions.

Golf- We golfed the Playa Dorada golf course, which is in the compound. [-] If you plan to golf bring your own glove, balls, and tees... If golfing more than 1 time maybe your own clubs..
Positives-- Didnt have to book a teetime, The course was nice (rated in top 100 courses outside the USA by golfdigest), Rental clubs were Pings, king cobra, Staff, burners...
Negatives-- I saw only 1 set of Leftys, HAVE to have a caddy which was a $15 fee then you have to tip on top of that (He'll try to tell you everyone tips $40 or 50, I only tip him $10 or $15 I didnt need one and he really didnt do anything for me).

Totally recommend the Damajuana waterfalls tours. We did 12 of the 27 waterfalls. I was reading about it being dangerous? Maybe if you aren't fit or swim like a rock. I felt totally safe the entire time, our guides made sure everyone felt safe jumping or sliding. Again this tour was booked through our rep

Lastly Id recommend getting professional pictures taken on the beach. Our appt lasted 1 hour, had 2 Photogs, and they took 230 pics. They use digital SLR cameras which kick the [-] out of normal point and shoot cameras, they know how to use the lighting, focus, exclude people in the background. Original cost was $150 but haggled him down to $120USD for all pics on a DVD. couldnt beat that price for those pics here in Canada. best of all there is no committment to buy, you can have to appt. and when you see the outcome if you dont like you can leave without anything.

All in all I really enjoyed this Grand Paradise, I would probably only go somewhere else next time just becasue there are too many resorts in too many countries to keep going to one, but I would recommend to anyone...
Hope you enjoy it!

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank llmm44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Paradise Playa Dorada

Address: Complejo Playa Dorada, Puerto Plata 332, Dominican Republic
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#6 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range: £66 - £344 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Paradise Playa Dorada 3.5*
Number of rooms: 425
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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

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