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Iberostar Costa Dorada
Ranked #1 of 40 Hotels in Puerto Plata
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 4 June 2014

This review is a warning to singles and couples only, not families. If you have kids, this is more likely the place for you. I feel like this was once a wonderful beautiful 5 star resort, however with time, and certain cutbacks, they have failed to maintain it and no one really updated the stars they have.

*Let me begin with the check in, upon arriving we did not have our confirmation email on paper, so they said I couldn't check in unless I printed it out. This was $3. However, when presented with the paper, apparently they didn't need it after all. So, it was quite annoying that I was conned for $3 when I didn't need to waste my time on it. ****THERE IS NO FREE WIFI THROUGHOUT THE RESORT (I thought maybe the lobby would have it, but that was not true)
*The people behind the front desk do not know how to perform their jobs well, not only did we not get a list of activities the resort offers upon check in, but they failed to mention one of their premier restaurants were only opened from Thursday to Sunday, so we ended up missing out on that, even though we were apparently "guaranteed" a reservation there.
*The TV in our room kept messing up, after telling the front desk twice about it, they finally fixed it, 3 days into our trip.
*The "mini bar" or the refrigerator with coke, water and (I think) beer, was a disgrace.
*On the drinks topic, the drinks on the cocktail menu at the bars were extremely subpar and oddly enough, the same drinks are not available in all the bars. The bar by the lobby actually has a better selection than the ones by the pool or anywhere else. I ordered a Long Island and double shot of Jack & Coke to make the mix much more potent with alcohol and less saturated with juices and other sugary substances. I also found myself walking to the bar more often than I wanted to. (Comparing to other wonderful resorts such as Secrets and The Ayana, I never once needed to do such a thing, the waiters at those resorts asked me if I wanted another drink before I even waved them down.)
*The resorts food was great, not phenomenal. They made a terrible attempt at sushi, but definitely had some good latin american cuisine.
*The pool is only opened from 7am - 7pm. I feel like a pool at a resort should be opened or accessible at all hours, or perhaps close later than 7pm, but thats my opinion.
*There are definitely a lot of amazing activities here, but all during the day. The entertainment staff are amazing and involve everyone from kids to adults. They definitely made the trip a bit more bearable. Not many activities after 5pm, there is a show between 8pm-11pm, which is fun and engaging, but thats it.
*There is a night club that opens at 11pm called "route 66" that mainly plays Bachata, Merengue, and Salsa, with tidbits of any American music (at least while I was there from 11pm-1am).
*We took advantage of the beach, which is flooded with people who are trying to sell you something or have you book an excursion with them. I could have certainly used less of that on my time trying to get my tan on. I was constantly worried that the locals would take anything they saw unattended (I saw someone take a hat that didn't belong to them, I couldn't tell the hotel security because he wasn't there)

We did not let the resorts flaws ruin our trip. In the end, we had a great time, but it was no thanks to the resort itself. I will definitely not be staying at Iberostar, Puerto Plata, and quite possibly any of the other Iberostar resorts.

Room Tip: If you stay here, building 1 is closest to the beach and pools.
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Jesus B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 4 June 2014 via mobile

Me and my boyfriend visited dom rep in the middle of May.
The hotel was always lovely and clean, with friendly staff all around the complex.
It rained the first couple of days when we were there but what so you expect from the Dominican Republic really. The other couple of days it was lovely and hot.
The room was really nice and big, ours faced away from the pool area which was good because it wasn't as nosey in the morning when everyone is around the pool.
The pool was massive but down side to that would be it was never completely clean but I could cope with that.
The buffet food was the same thing over and over again, that's why I wouldn't have been able to stay more than a week at this hotel.
The a la carte restaurants were nice but you can only have 1 booking in each, each week.
The entertainment staff were great all throughout the day, always tried to get you involved and the night shows were amazing, especially the lion king show.
All in all we had a lovely week just relaxing in the dom rep.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Kelsey H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2014

We stayed at the Iberostar in Punta Cana in Nov/Dec for 2 weeks and really enjoyed our stay. this time we decided on Iberostar at Costa Dorada. We came with the same friends and all had the same opinion great holiday. The staff could not do enough for you, the food was to a high standard and the waiters were very obliging and pleasant. The room was up to a very good standard and the maids kept it very clean and tidy. The Iberostar at Costa Dorada is smaller than the one at Punta Cana which suited us.The grounds are very well kept and clean also around the big pool. The entertainment was to a high standard which we all enjoyed through the day and evenings,all the entertainment staff were pleasant work very hard. We were very lucky the time we went it was not overcrowded. so no problems for loungers and beach loungers.The beaches were wide and long you could walk for miles which we did on a regular basis. The sea was clear,at times you had problems with seaweed and under currents but not a problem We normally go in February, next year we will go same time as this year it is hotter and quieter All in all great holiday thanks to the staff.

Room Tip: we had first floor overlooking the gardens not to near the pool,we had a corner suite large and sunn...
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Robert E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2014

We went to Iberostar in Costa Dorada based on feedback on trip advisor and it did not disappoint. We have 2 children aged 4 and 7 who loved every minute. There was a nice balance of families, couples and groups which was reflected by the entertainment. The ids loved the beach, pool, swim up bar and kids club, Connie was excellent. They enabled the kids to get involved in the evening shows and sometimes kids dinners. Staff were really friendly and the entertainment and entertainment team were superb, they work really hard. Would strongly reconnect and will definitely visit again or go to another Iberostar.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank Mathew S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2014

We stayed at the Iberostar resort the first week in May. The food was amazing, far superior than any other resort I have been to down south. The pool is large and the beach was amazing. The gym was the best resort gym I have ever seen. The staff were all great and as attentive as you wanted them to be. This is the only all inclusive resort I have ever wanted to stay at again.

The only thing that I would recommend is air conditioning in the gym. The fans didn't help at all.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Bumble37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2014 via mobile

This resort is better than the neighbouring be live on many ways. The service is good the drinks are good the food is not as good but the beach facilities and the paella cookout are pleasant.
Most people reserve the loungers with towels and books early in the morning although there are signs everywhere saying this is not allowed.
Summary,
Puerto plata is the cheap relation of Punta Cana and the resorts reflect that fact.

  • Stayed: April 2014
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Thank Pablo17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2014

My husband and I stayed here last year and loved it. This year, my husband's father came with us and our choice to stay here again really made for a familiar and relaxing experience for all of us. Although I heard that there was a change in management since last year at this time, the service, the food, the grounds, the activities, the rooms, and all other aspects of the resort - were maintained at the same level of excellence. Here's our summary from this year with attention to some different details and some details worth repeating:

Service: Here are some of the staff who made our stay very special:
Front Desk: Lenny, Andreina, Yanira, Logan
Main Buffet: Roberto, Frank, Katia, Mirian - also had to privilege of seeing some of these folks at the beach lunch buffet
Taxi Desk: Julio
Beach bartender: Juan
Front Lobby Bar: Yorki
Activities: Tekila, Chocolate (wish their true names were on their tags)
Our Room Attendant: Ines - absolutely great service
What made these folks stand out was their genuinely warm and friendly attitude toward us, no matter how crazy busy things got. They were also so helpful in my quest to learn Spanish - very patient with my learning curve. Wish I had written down more names!

Room: Both my husband and I and his father upgraded to a beach front room - we stayed in 1215 and my father-in-law was in 1216. The staff were so accommodating in arranging side by side rooms for us. The extra 20.00 USD per night was worth the view - we did this last year and didn't regret it. The bed was comfortable - pillows a tad hard, but everyone likes a different type of pillow so that is just a matter of taste. Everything functioned well in the room and we bought a small converter in the gift shop (1.00 USD) to accommodate my hair appliances - the resorts plug-ins are standard USA type but the shape of the outlets are unique and you can't plug in anything without the converter. No big deal - I'm keeping it for next year's stay. :) There is a built-in couch in the room as well as a coffee table and big wicker chair. Also, a desk and chair with a lamp. There are end tables on either side of the bed (we had a king bed) and on the balcony - there is a wicker table and two chairs. The closet area is very ample - with shelves, and space for hanging clothing as well - iron and ironing board in closet. Also, a bench type piece of furniture with two drawers in it for storage. There is also a safe - there is a charge for it but I'm unsure of the cost since it was part of our package and not a separate charge for us. Bathroom shower was consistently hot and good water pressure. Fridge in the room that was kept well stocked with water, soda and some local beer - all good. Air conditioning kept things cool - just don't leave the patio door open or it will kick off - a good economical feature. Yes, the air was humid - but it's the tropics - didn't expect any different - we still slept just fine. If you sit on the balcony, you can feel the trade winds - it's stronger in the afternoon.

Food: Making reservations was simple - show up between 9-12 at the desk for this purpose and you can set up for a day or two ahead of time at the specialty restaurants. This year, we tried the Mexican and the seafood restaurant. The Mexican was a hit with the whole family - we ordered Special Tacos as our main entrée - appetizers and dessert was set up buffet style. Service was excellent and efficient. The seafood restaurant functioned similarly - also great service and great food - we all ate a shrimp dish - it was cooked perfectly. The main buffet and the buffet at the beach were always tasty, with some foods varying each day and some selections that were consistent - such as fries, and pizza for the less adventurous. We tried some new foods this year from the main buffet - fried yucca, stewed goat, star fruit, octopus and some fruit that I couldn't identify but hey, it was fun to try new foods. There is truly something for everyone - if you can't find something you like, then you're missing the forest for the trees. Our service at the buffets was consistently excellent - drink refills were prompt, dirty dishes cleared away quickly and we never felt rushed to leave - part of the relaxing experience we enjoyed.

Beach: Love that the trees have been left intact and not cleared away from the beach like you see in some areas - this makes for some natural shade. Also, here's an extra service that the resort provides that goes unnoticed by some but is an excellent safety precaution exercised by the resort - coconuts are chopped down when they get to the stage where they could fall on someone - same for large palm leaves. This is a good eye on safety of guests. Another extra - staff clear away seaweed (or whatever other vegetation washes up) every morning and haul it away so that guests can walk unencumbered on the sand. The sand is very soft, there are plenty of beach chairs and tables, and there are guards that patrol the area during the day and night to protect resort grounds. The beach in the Dominican is public property, which is a positive for the country - no matter what your economic level - a person can enjoy the beach. Nice balance.

Grounds: clean, clean, clean and beautiful - this year, there was a Koi pond that was completed - it was in progress last year. Also, there was a pool bar that was new. Same two peacocks and one peahen that wander around the grounds. Same crew of flamingos and a few ducks. I didn't see turtles this year. The orchid garden is still wonderfully maintained and a delightful extra to enjoy on the grounds. I noticed that some areas had been re-painted which added a refreshed look to those areas. Really like the rain chains (not sure what they are called) that are near the main buffet - they keep rain runoff from digging holes in the ground or splattering the walkway. There are seating areas all over the front of the resort as well as toward the beach area - there are multiple rows of palapas and chaise chairs that are back a ways from the beach for those folks that don't want to navigate the beach but still want a view of the ocean.

Activities: There is always something for everyone at all levels of activeness. Everything from Bingo to aerobics and lobbing water balloons at one of the Star Friends who stood on a ladder in the pool in a costume while everyone else was vacated from the pool to ensure guests were safe. Poor guy - he was a great sport though and made a fun show out of that activity. Tennis, beach volleyball, air gun shooting at targets, croquet, soccer and a host of other activities. The Star Friends work super hard to include everyone who wants to participate in something. Played Bingo this year and won a T-shirt. yay

We went during low season so we never really had to wait in line for much of anything - great time of year to go - there was a little rain - maybe a half day or an hour here and there, but mostly great weather. We like going on holiday before hurricane season but also not during high season. I truly hope we have an opportunity to come here again - it's our home in Puerto Plata, D.R. and I hope that it operates for many years to come. Thank you Iberostar!!

Room Tip: Last year, we stayed in 1211 and this year in 1215 - equally good choices in beach front and the ext...
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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3  Thank Andi20102010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Iberostar Costa Dorada

Address: Carretera Luperon km 2.5 | Marapica, Costa Dorada, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Plata
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#1 Spa Hotel in Puerto Plata
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
#2 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#3 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#4 Business Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range: £104 - £271 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Iberostar Costa Dorada 4*
Number of rooms: 516
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

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