I visited with my husband and 14 year old son. On arrival we were given a nice refreshing welcome drink and a cold damp facecloth to freshen ourselves up and it was very welcome indeed. The staff were really friendly and helpful, we were checked in and shown directions to our room, our cases were brought to the room moments later by a bell boy.
The entire place was spotlessly clean and you could see staff cleaning at all hours. We were in Beata block which is near the quiet pool, it was nice and quiet in the evenings which is great for light sleepers. The bar at the quiet pool is lovely, ask for a Jackie Special, haven't a clue whats in it but its so refreshing on a hot day, almost like an alcoholic slush. On the subject of Jackie, she's great, she makes the bar what it is, her dry sense of humour can seem harsh at first but it doesn't take long to realise she's just fooling around, "Jackie, you got a problem with me?" lol
The food was good too, the main buffet restaurant offered a lot of variety, obviously things were repeated a lot but there was plenty to allow you to choose something different everyday and you definately wont go hungry. The other restaurants were ok too, the best of which we found was the Italian one, the Ocean Bar Grill by the beach was great too and they also do lunchtime food which is fab. The Octopus Restaurant above the main buffet was our least favourite as the menu was quite small and the food was just ok.
The entertainment team were the best we've ever seen and they never stop, they work from early morning through to late evening and never seem to run out of energy! The games played by the main pool and on the beach were different every day so it didn't get repetitive and there was no pressure to join in if you didn't want to.
We cannot fault anything about this place and highly recommend it, do not believe the poor reviews, some people seem to look for things to find fault with. The service was impeccable, for example, our son accidently smashed a glass in the bathroom at 11 o'clock at night so I phoned reception to ask if I could borrow a brush and brush pan to clean it up, within 10 minutes a maid was cleaning the bathroom floor thoroughly!
It's normal to tip the staff and we took loads of one dollar notes with us, we we're more than happy to tip often as they couldn't do enough for you.
I would recommend the VIP Paradise Island Excursion, truly a fantastic day and the Captain Roselio was brilliant but remember plenty of high factor sun cream, it's surprising how fast the sun can burn when you're on a boat. The cable car trip to the top of the mountain is also worth doing, great views but go in the morning as we were told its usually clearer.
The beach is beautiful and the vendors are not a problem if you just politely say no thanks, they leave you alone.
We were recommended by friends we met there to have the photographer take some nice pictures as a souvenir for us but I was concerned it would be very expensive, how wrong I was, the photographer spent one and a half hours taking photos with us all around the grounds of the hotel and on the beach, telling us how to stand etc. we met up again the next morning and she showed us the 156 photos she had taken. The photos were of a very high quality and she had positioned us well to capture the moment but our biggest surprise was the price. There were several packages available but we chose an album with 20 of our chosen photos in, plus a larger copy of one photo which we could frame and we were also given a disc with all 156 photos on it, the cost of which came in at just under £100, well worth the money!
It was the Easter weekend whilst we were there which is a huge celebration for the local people and naturally some of them stayed at the hotel for a day or two, but apart from a family who had lower hygiene standards than us (changing dirty nappies of a sunbed by the pool with no towel or anything underneath) and just one night when some locals were celebrating quite loudly at 2 in the morning in the quiet pool, there was really no other problems and these two incidents were no fault of the hotel.
If someone offered us some free tickets we'd be back there tomorrow!
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- Also Known As:
- Gran Ventana Beach Hotel
- Gran Ventana Dominican Republic
- Gran Ventana Puerto Plata
- Gran Ventana Beach Resort Puerto Plata
- Hotel Gran Ventana Beach
- Grand Ventana Beach Resort
- Gran Ventana Hotel Dominican Republic
- VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata