We had a pretty great week at this resort.
Disclaimer: I have been fortunate enough to be taken on a number of really amazing vacations by my family so I've experienced the lap of luxury and would be unhappy vacationing in squalor, but that said I have spent the last four years living the student dream and my standards are probably slightly lower than those of some other patrons. This was my first all-inclusive experience.
Rooms: Clean, pretty normal. The maids did some really cool sculptures with towels and stuff in our room and our friends rooms. There were always flowers on the bed. We were in Building 6, which is apparently one of the newer buildings, and have no complaints except that we had to ask for extra blankets.
Grounds/Pool: So beautiful. Pool was great, I liked that it had 3 arm-thingys and something different would be going on in each. If you didn't feel like getting accosted by people splashing around playing water sports you could just move to a different part of the pool, and if you wanted to take part in a rollicking game of volleyball or something you didn't have to feel bad about bothering people who were just trying to relax in the pool. The only thing is people can basically smoke wherever they want so I was having a really lovely nap under an umbrella one afternoon and suddenly I was inhaling huge amounts of second-hand smoke courtesy of some lady sitting next to me. Rather unpleasant, and a bit of a weird culture shock coming from Canada where it's really difficult to smoke in public places.
Food: I was in starving student heaven. The buffet always had at least one questionable dish and one that was to die for, so it was hit and miss but mostly hit. Eat the fish...I never had a bad experience with the fish. Also, a lot of my party didn't take any immune-system boosting drugs like Dukoral and we ate salad, water, and fruit we didn't peel ourselves like crazy...nobody really got sick, magically, so considering all the warning's I'd had about traveller's diarrhea I think that's something to congratulate the hotel on. Book the a la cartes early because they fill up by the end of the week. Also I probably had about three lunches every day because I couldn't go to the bathroom by the beach without hitting up the snack bar. Sometimes they'd have something surprisingly fancy like Paella.
Other random comments:
- Security guards on the beach get really uncomfortable when you get too close to the water at night, but none of them speak any English so that can be really confusing. Also one of them bugged us until we brought him a hot dog.
- The Air Transat holiday people charged a lot of us twice for an excursion...so be wary and check your statements.
- I found the staff to be incredibly helpful and friendly.
- Parts of the dining room were really dark? In a bad I-can't-see-what-I'm-putting-on-my-fork kind of way.
- You have to get up obscenely early to get pool chairs with any kind of shade. People wake up at around 8 and put towels over a bunch of chairs then go mill around for about two thousand years before finally coming back and actually using their chairs.
- It's really windy at the beach, this being the Atlantic side of the island, and you'll get sand ALL over you. Bring a cup with a lid.
- This may sound odd but bring orange juice or apple juice or something from outside the resort. I just don't find the insanely sugary juice they had to be very thirst-quenching, and all I wanted by the end of the week was a nice glass of Tropicana.
Overall: I found this resort to be family friendly, digestive system friendly, university reading week friendly, and delicious. Don't expect magic, it's fairly average, but it was never below expectations.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Be Live Collection Marien is an all-inclusive 5-star resort in Puerto Plata, located in the northern coast of the Dominican Republic. With a privileged location synonymous of beautiful settings and its heavenly beaches, it is a perfect place to spend a relaxing vacation whether it is for a romantic getaway or for a family fun adventure. The resort features a spa, nearby golf course for guests and event facilities ideal for hosting special events. This complex is located 1 hour from Santiago de Los Caballeros, 10 minutes from the city of Puerto Plata, known for its rum factories and 30 minutes from Gregorio Luperon International Airport. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with World Independent Hotel Promotion, Travel Republic (UK), Expedia, Hotels.com, Booking.com, HotelsClick, Ebookers, Evoline ltd, HotelQuickly, Cancelon, getaroom.com and 5viajes2012 S.L. so you can book your Be Live Collection Marien reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Be Live Grand Marien Hotel Puerto Plata
- Grand Oasis Marien Hotel
- Coral Marien Puerto Plata
- Oasis Marien
- Marien Coral Resort
- Grand Oasis Marien Puerto Plata
- Be Live Collection Marien Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata