We recently spent a week at the Iberostar Costa Dorada and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We stayed at a Sandals in St. Lucia last year for our honeymoon and decided to celebrate our first anniversary with another trip. I had to remind myself not to compare the two, considering Sandals probably has the upper hand in the all-inclusive vacation thing over many others.
The staff was relatively friendly but not all were fluent in English, so we only really engaged a few in conversation. We changed rooms upon arrival so we could have an ocean view and were happy with the size of the room and bathroom. The king-size bed was not the most comfortable and reminded me of a bed from a cheap motel. The maid service was excellent in terms of keeping the room very clean, but as we got closer to our departure date I had to ask for bath towels and our last day and a half we ran out of tissues, nearly ran out of toilet paper and beer stocked in our small fridge went from four to one by the last day. The resort is very clean and the staff works hard to keep it that way.
There are three "specialty" restaurants were you have to make reservations for dinner with Guest Services between 9am and noon, along with a buffet where reservations are not required. In all honesty, I found the buffet to the best choice by far. The specialty restaurants weren't all that special, in my opinion, and the food was just okay. The buffet offered a variety each day, including fried rice and sushi, which were delicious. It was also excellent for breakfast and lunch. The service at the specialty restaurants was spotty and the not all the wait staff was overly friendly. I found the service at the buffet much better and friendlier.
We went to the spa for a massage, body wrap and facial. They try to get you to up your service and spend more when you book your spa treatments. The woman at the desk was very friendly and helpful. Unfortunately during a foot massage I had a little pain at the top of the my foot and when we left the spa I told my husband my foot hurt. I had to take my time walking and when I stepped out of the water at the beach I felt something shift in my foot. Needless to say, I came home with a fractured bone in my foot and am now in an aircast. I'm not saying not to get spa treatments, just maybe avoid a foot massage. I did return to the spa for a wash and blow dry later in the week and was thrilled with the job the stylist did.
The beach was very clean and was the preferred place to hang out because there were too many kids at the pool and much less at the beach. There are no adult-only areas at the resort (which was disappointing) and kids were even at the beach bar, which was annoying.
The evening entertainment was very good and we enjoyed spending time at the lobby bar and even ventured into the nightclub one night (it opens at 11pm) and that was also fun.
The resort is beautiful with a very large pool, well-kept property and a gorgeous lobby. If you are looking to do excursions visit Elvis in the lobby, as he was extremely helpful and planned a great all-day excursion to Paradise Island for our anniversary. Despite a couple things I know we would definitely return to the Costa Dorada...all in all it was money well spent and we had an amazing time!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The IBEROSTAR Costa Dorada hotel is located in front of the large golden sand beach of Costa Dorada, 10 minutes from the city of Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic's north coast. This wonderful 5-star All Inclusive resort is a wonderful haven for aquatic sports lovers. Renovated in 2011, the IBEROSTAR Costa Dorada hotel has 498 Double Rooms and 18 spacious Junior Suites. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Costa Dorado
- Iberostar Puerto Plata
- Iberostar Costa Dorada Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata
- Iberostar Costa Dorada Puerto Plata
- Iberostar Hotel Costa Dorada
- Iberostar Costa Dorada Hotel
- Costa Dorado
- Puerto Plata Iberostar
- Iberostar Hotel Puerto Plata