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“Great time at a great price”

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The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort
Ranked #11 of 40 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Reviewed 2 November 2011

My husband and I just returned from our first trip to DR and we had a great experience at the Lifestyle Tropical. We took advantage of the 11 a night pp rate they had advertised last year. We did our homework and read that it was a timeshare so we were prepared to dismiss the salespeople with their "welcome package." And we had no expectations because the rate was so low. We were pleasantly surprised with a lot of things.

ROOM: The room was a good size with a queen bed and balcony. The bathroom had a very small shower and no curtain. If this is important to you then make sure you upgrade to something with a bigger shower. The furniture and TV were dated but this was not important to us as we were ever hardly in the room. However we heard from other couples that had flat screen TV's and sofas so there is a hierarchy.

FOOD: This was our first all-inclusive and the food was pretty good most of the time. There was a lot of variety and everything was not excellent but we always found something we enjoyed whether it be at Casablanca (the main buffet) or Club Lagoon (Great typical Spanish lunch of rice and some meat stew!) Or some snack from the VIP beach which we had access to by booking through Cheap Caribbean. I have read other reviews regarding the themed restaurants and here's my 2 cents: You go all the way to the Caribbean and expect to get great Chinese/Italian/Mexican at a resort, really? We did get reservations by simply going to the desk the day of or before to the Mexican (I heard it was good) and the filet mignon was very good but the only reason I would have been upset was if their typical DR meals of rice, beans and meat stews were not up to par - and this was never the case.

ENTERTAINMENT/ACTIVITIES - Every night they do strive to have something for entertainment and we partook of the Coliseum shows which consists of dancing, skits and audience participation game shows. These were good ice breakers and were easy enough to skip if not interested. As far as daytime activities, thanks to Juan at the resort we booked an awesome snorkeling trip at Sousa Bay for a group of 13 strangers we met and had the best time! We also tipped him and got a great price for parasailing which we had never done and was also great. Juan is the definitely the go to guy - he helped us find alternative sources for massage and also handles the scuba for those interested. The price is all in haggling and every once in a while tipping. Juan was awesome, personable and also guided us to Pedro who makes the BEST drinks on Harmony Beach. The spa has a gym that is sparse but can be used but their services in my opinion were highly overpriced. Sunday's party was awesome with a huge buffett, tables set up, dancers, performers, live band, DJ and fireworks. Definitely a bonus for us.

RESORT - Beautiful! Grounds well kept, manicured and plenty of pools, towels, drinks in the room replenished every day (2 H2O, 2 beers, 2 sodas) Plenty of bottled water everywhere (and this a credit to them because many top notch places do not do this) Staff was personable, well dressed and hardworking. VIP beds - plenty available if you don't mind being in the sun and if they were all full you could get lawn chairs to the beach or by the pool. Table tennis, bikes, and a separate kids world area.

OVERALL - Our experience was great in that we met other couples and really had a lot of fun hanging out, dancing, and hanging out by the beach. I am from PR so I can tell you that the beach was not the absolute best, the food was not the absolute best and the room was not perfect (Water would sit in the shower area) but again we had zero expectations, an open mind, and no set agenda. We just wanted to relax, enjoy the caribbean and have a good time. Taking that into account we had an awesome time thanks to a very friendly and helpful staff, great couples we met along the way and some tips from the locals.

We will definitely come back again for a no-brainer easy going vacation.

Room Tip: I would get a higher floor because our room remained damp. If this happens make sure you leave the...
  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank zclass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3,430 - 3,436 of 4,744 reviews

Reviewed 1 November 2011

Resort is very nice, clean, and they make great drinks. Ignore the negative reviews, this place was very nice, and we had a blast.

Don't drink the wine though, it was horrible. The only place the wine was good was in the VIP area.

The food was very good, some nights at the buffet they had Dominican food that was excellent.

The rooms looked newly remodeled, were very clean and the A/C worked great.

The only thing I did not like were all the restaurants are outdoor restaurants, none are air conditioned.

Room Tip: Almost all rooms face the ocean
  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with friends
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2  Thank stevenj4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 October 2011

I really enjoyed my stay at the Lifestyle Tropical, I received a fax on a super cheap stay I really didn't realize that it was to sell me something. I had no intention of purchasing, but the deal was good and I totally love the accommodations. Great restful vacation. Not much to do but lay on the beach all day.

Room Tip: Just be ware they will try to sell you something.
  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled with family
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Thank kellyalbers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 October 2011

This was one of the most memorable and awesome vacations that we have ever taken.. DO NOT believe all the negative reviews. The people that have written the negative reviews are either to snobby and spoiled to enjoy such a beautiful resort.
After reading all the negative reviews, I was very nervous traveling to Lifestyles Resort but we went with an open mind. We traveled with another couple and from the moment we stepped off of the plane we were treated with such genuine hospitality, something that you do not get here in the USA.
Check in was a breeze. We were in building 5 on the 3rd floor and had no problems at all. The room was clean, well stocked with water, soda and beer in the frig daily, stocked with towels and if you needed extra, all you had to do was ask. The bed was extremely comfortable, I think we slept better here than at home. There is no need to tip but tipping will go a long way and is very much appreciated.
We were given a reservation at check-in for the Mexican Restaurant which was very good. All of our other meals were eaten at the buffet. The assortment of foods was great, if you can't find something to eat than you must really be a picky eater. The only food that I would suggest you not eat would be the salad. Other than that, you should be fine. I have stomach problems and went with plenty of immodium thinking that I would be taking it everyday and I didn't have to take it at all..
The pools and beach were awesome. Yes, if you want a cabana in front of the beach, you will have to get in line by 7:15-7:30 am but it is well worth it.. You will meet some wonderful people from all over the world while waiting and the beds are well worth it because you will spend the entire day there.
The Welcome Party was great and they also had an American BBQ Party with all the fixings and even included several American Flags. "nice touch"
Parasailing was awesome and Paradise Island is a must... But make sure you bring a towel with you, they don't provide towels on the Island.
You will find that the Dominican people are very genuine and friendly.
The second day after breakfast we were greeted by the 'clipboards', but if you don't want to go, it is no problem. We went on the tour (it is called a Vacation Club, not a timeshare) and it was actually very nice. You got to ride around in a golf cart and see the suites, villas and private beach which was beautiful and in the end, we received 2 t-shirts, a bottle of Rum and a bottle of Mama Juana. It was painless and enjoying..
All in all, this was by far the best vacation that we have ever taken. And we definately knew when we were back in the good ole' USA, welcome back to snobby and rude people.
Can't wait to go back to Lifestyles Resort, it will be our home away from home..

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank MaryLee121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 October 2011

We booked on CheapCaribbean this summer for our stay last week (Oct) for the $19/night per person deal, which includes the VIP.
WOW, WERE WE FREAKING HAPPYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This place was just INCREDIBLE. Let me clarify, that this was my first all inclusive resort experience, aside from staying at an optional all inclusive resort in Egypt once, but not buying the AI package, and just paying the cheap room rate. We were all completely blown away. There were 4 of us. 1 married couple, and 2 single guys, in 2 rooms.
Possibilities are endless as there's a bar on the beach, then a nicer bar on the VIP beach, a swim-up pool bar open LATE, and a bar in the reception!!! I don't drink alcohol, but believe me, I was pounding down 12-25 non-alcoholic cocktails and pina coladas a day. If I was on a cruise or anywhere else, the bar bill would have been $100 a day!!!!

Not to mention the buffet, and restaurant options!
LOVED the beach and the pool. Gorgeous layout.

The rooms are pretty standard. This is a 3* resort and ***YOU ARE IN THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC***, so you are not going to have huge flat pannel tv's, and marble countertops in your bathroom, but we thoroughly enjoyed our room, bathroom, tv, and porch. Very relaxing, and the staff would stock our fridge every morning with Water, Pepsi, Sprite, and beer if you wanted it. Of course - all free.

The food isn't INSANE, but being free, I was full every day and very satisfied!! Some of the options if you were a member (property owner) looked nicer, but I was happy the whole week.

As for the timeshare guys with the clip boards. They tried to use fancy wording about a "welcome package" for our 2nd day there after we checked in, and I just told them a stern "We're not interested in a timeshare, sorry", and was never bugged again for the remaining 6 days. EASY!

When they run a cheap deal for 2012, I will for sure be coming back, and I have told all my friends!! What a blast. We booked several excursions and took a few trips into town on our own as well.

TIP - DON'T PAY $100+ FOR A MASSAGE IN THE RESORT SPA, JUST PAY $26 FOR A 1 HOUR MASSAGE BY THE LOCAL GAL W/THE BED ON THE BEACH IN FRONT OF THE RESORT!!! Nothing better than getting a massage while listening to the waves crash.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled with friends
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4  Thank David M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2011

We got a great deal at this hotel through Cheap Caribbean, and I have to say, for the price paid you can't really complain, but I still want to mention some things here that need attention.
The property itself is beautiful and kept clean, great pools, common areas and beach area (especially VIP beach with comfy & very private beach beds).
The line at check in was very long and moved slow. It is an open air check in area, so it is pretty hot, and there are no fans when you are waiting, except for if you are already directly at the desk.
The rooms are nothing special but also kept clean, mattress is not very good, but we had slept in worse. The picture on the TV wasn't always too good, but we didn't really watch TV anyhow, except before going to bed.
Room service was ok most of the days, one day though, the room hasn't been made up until about 5pm and then they did not leave us fresh towels in the room. We had to wait until later to get towels because, supposedly they were waiting for the towels to come back from the laundry. That was kind of inconvenient, especially if you wanna shower after a day in the sand and there are no towels to dry yourself.
The food was edible, but far from good. The best was probably breakfast or the snacks at the VIP beach. This includes the buffet as well as the a la carte restaurants. The italian restaurant had overcooked pasta, with not very tasty sauces. The Seafood restaurant was the better one, and my mum and my husband acutally quite enjoyed their meal. Mine was ok too. We did not try any of the other a la carte restaurants, one because we could not get a reservation and two because we acutally wanted to eat locally to experience the real Dominican Republic. The day of our check out, I also saw a bunch of sick people waiting for medical attention, that was the day after the welcome dinner buffet - they said they thought it was the food. I can't tell if that was the problem, we did not eat at the Buffet that night.
Staff in all of the restaurants was not very friendly, and especially at the buffet you had to wait a while for your drinks.
They had some good shows for entertainment in the evening, which we enjoyed watching.
One more thing. At check in we were assigned a "Concierge". This supposed concierge was to help us throughout our stay. The next morning he catched us at breakfast and told us he had a welcome gift for us, that we should come with him. Well, they did give us a gift, but they also wanted us to listen to one of their sales people for the membership. I really did not appreciate them telling us stories so we come and get stuck at one of their presentations.
All in all we had a good time, and as mentioned at the beginning, for the price paid we really can't complain.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank bellalinchen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2011

WOW!!!
Where should I begin..
After reading some of the other negative reviews, myself and my fiance decided that we would travel with an open mind. We were very surprised in a positive way. All that we read was individuals blasting the resort, staff, weather and food. We can only speak for our trip which took place Oct. 2011. Once we arrived at the resort, we were made to feel welcomed and appreciated. We requested building 5/6 to be away from the pools and bars and it was granted. We were able to make dinner reservations with a few dollars as tip to accomodate our desired times and days. We were pleased with the welcoming staff and great food and drinks. We were actually interested in the "owners" tour of the resort property for sale for membership. After a little wrangling, we went back the next day and purchased into the resort. We traded another timeshare and they gave us more than we paid for it. Also, we were able to haggle on th requested price and we're both very satisfied. The VIP membership which we bought from Cheap Carribean for $19 a day was fantastic. For $265, we received round trip transportation from the airport and 5 nights, We received all the food and drinks in which you could want. Again, the staff are very friendly and helpful and eager to help. You do not have to tip, but just one or two dollars go long beyond the day you give them. The DR economy is very depressed, so when asked what will $2 buy there, I was told that it would purchase rice for a family of six for one week. So, you can tip accordingly-but not required. In closing, I have been very blessed to travel a bit in my life, but this by far was the best vacation ever. We do plan to travel down there a couple times a year in the future. Travel with the anticipation of receiving a great time, great food all for a great price. Bravo Cheap Carribean!!!

Room Tip: If you like peace and quiet and would like to have a peaceful nights rest, request buildings 5 or 6.
  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank thebly35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort

Address: Columbus Torre 1 | Playa Cofresi, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic (Formerly Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort & Spa)
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range: £66 - £182 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 282
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set within the sprawling Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, The Tropical offers a classic hotel vacation experience set within quaint, two- and threestory, Mediterranean-style buildings. The mood is laid-back and distinctively Caribbean. Guest enjoy all resort facilities and amenities (excluding the V.I.P areas) including swimming pools, a choice of excellent restaurants, exercise rooms, tennis courts, windsurfing and so much more. The Lifestyle Tropical is Ideal for couples seeking a private island hide-away with all the advantages of a world-class resort. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort And Spa
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Hotel Puerto Plata
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort Spa
Hacienda Tropical
Hotel Lifestyle Tropical Beach
The Tropical At Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Dominican Republic/Puerto Plata

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