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“Nice hotel with lovely staff...shame about some of the guests”

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Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana
Ranked #14 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
GreenLeadersSilver level
Durham
Level Contributor
72 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Nice hotel with lovely staff...shame about some of the guests”
Reviewed 11 October 2011

Booked this hotel with First Choice as it was very cheap (online discount of £890). After reading some reviews i was very dubious about what it would be like. The hotel itself is lovely(but not 5*)

Thompsons flight was delayed going. We were told the flight had a 3 hour delay as we parked the car at Airparks, so I asked when I checked in. We were assured it was on time so we went through to departures. Suprise, suprise, it then came up as a 2 hour delay. I also asked for window seats, and was told there was none. Suprise again, free window seats when we got on. Even worse coming home as they tried to seat us 7 rows apart-even though we were no where near the end of the check in line they said there were no seats together. Its all a big scam to try and get you to pre book seats( I would not bother as the couple I sat next to paid £50 and never even got the seats they booked). Its about time Thompson actually provided the service they charge huge amounts for.

When we arrived we waited in the First Choice line to be taken to our transfer bus. A man with clipboard took us off to a bus and then told us we had to pay 10 dollars transfer. I told him the transfer was included. After almost an hour, they eventually took us to the resort. It appears that we had been put on the wrong bus, so make sure when you arrive that you actualy see the correct rep, as we had a nightmare trying to sort it out

I e mailed the hotel to ask for a high floor room with a king bed and a nice view. We had a room in block 7 which overlooked the central area and it was nice. It was not damp and the aircon worked well. The bathroom could be better as the shower floods and it is not very private, but we were pleased with it.

Food was nice (although have had better in Mexico) and not having to make reservations was a bonus. There are dress codes for the restaurants but i saw plenty of people going in incorrectly dressed. If there is a dress code i feel it should be adhered to as we follow it, so why shouldnt otheres. Its nice to get dressed up on holiday, and i do not want to look at people in shorts in nice restaurants. The staff are also really nice and friendly and you do not have to tip. However the service was so good that we did leave tips in restaurants and for the waiters by the pool. Would recommend taking loads of dollar notes as they are very grateful for whatever tip you leave.

Pool area is lovely and so is the beach. There is seaweed, but it is easy to walk through it, and it is only a minor problem.

Theres a disco called Desires (could actually be renamed Sleaze) which plays constant hip hop music. Full of drunken Americans making fools of themselves. It would have been better if there was a mix of music

Now for the negative. The hotel website shows a really romantic resort, with nice looking people gazing into each others eyes. Wrong. The hotel is full of very large, loud, rowdy drunken Americans whose favourite pastime is to talk about themseves in loud, obnoxious voices. They spent all of the day wallowing in the pool drinking huge amounts from large insulated cups, whilst smoking. How horrible and inconsiderate is it to smoke in a swimming pool? This should be stopped. They also never left the pool to visit the toilet so you can make up your own mind as to what they were doing!!!!

I love to have a drink and enjoy myself but am astounded by some of the Americans greed and behaviour( I say some as we did meet some very nice Americans as well) It really is a shame as the hotel itself is lovely, but would not visit again because of the other guests. There were also big groups of loud American middle aged women making fools of themselves.

We did however have a good time and the weather was lovely. We like to people watch, so we had plenty to look at. If you are looking for a romantic resort, you would need to have the vast majority of guests removed to acheive this!!

Room Tip: Ask for a high floor room as they have higher ceilings which make them seem bigger. Lower floors sm...
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank DurhamHolly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Red Bank, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 October 2011

Please read this review if you are seriously considering booking Dreams Palm Beach for your next vacation. I am a seasoned traveler who recently stayed at the resort as part of a friends destination wedding.

This resort is marketed as a "luxury all-inclusive." Please note that this is a basic 2-star all inclusive property. The staff, with the exception of 2 or 3 we encountered, do not understand ANY english what so ever. So it is beyond difficult and frustrating to ask for anything. We would call for room service (extremely limited to chicken wraps, stale soggy pizza, cold fries and stale nacho chips) only to be met with a non-english speaking staff member on the other end who explained that if we wanted any drinks with our order, even water, we would have to physically walk down to the outdoor bar area. WHAT??

Perhaps the MOST DISTURBING of this whole trip was that the food made us EXTREMELY SICK. You will notice in their gift shop that they sell Immodium and Pepto Bismol buy the case..this is why. Out of the 20 or so people in our group, no exaggeration, about 8 got seriously sick. The food is very bad..very very bad. Most of the restaurants are not air conditioned so be prepared to sweat and have mosquitos and bugs flying around your food.
We got very ill from the food and had to stay in bed for the last few nights of the trip as a result. PLEASE BEWARE OF ANYTHING WITH CHEESE ON IT..THEY DO NOT PROPERLY REFRIGERATE THEIR DAIRY PRODUCTS WHICH IS MOST LIKELY WHY WE FELL ILL.

There is a vendor marketplace every few nights or so where locals are allowed to sell their products. BEWARE OF THIS! These vendors are EXTREMELY PUSHY AND NASTY. They will hound you as you walk through the resort. Even when we explained numerous times that we did not want to buy anything they insisted we keep looking and try on everything. EVERY PERSON (20 people or so) in our party expressed the same discomfort at these vendors.

The reviews on here about mold in the bathrooms are very true. We booked one of the highest room categories possible (honeymoon suite, preferred ocean view jacuzzi). Every time we flushed the toilet a foul odor of sewage filled the bathroom and adjoining bedroom areas.
There was mold surrounding the shower areas and the sheet rock on the ceiling of the bathroom was not properly installed exposing the dust and uncleanliness of the rafters.

Our mini bar, that is included in your $, was never re-stocked each day. We had to call multiple times to have they come back up and restock. Each time they did the staff ALWAYS looked for extra tips, so beware of this tactic.....

Bottom line, just know what you are investing in. Know that this is a 2-star resort. Know that the food will most likely make you ill. Know that there is a tremendous amount of seaweed on the ocean, so the sea looks murky green.

if you are comfortable drinking all beverages out of plastic cups, eating soggy, cold food that is barely edible, and are OK with rooms that need to be refurbished then book this resort.

Ultimately I blame the travel agent my friends booked their destination wedding through..shame on her for recommending this to them. As a travel professional she should be more concerned with giving them reputable options then making her commission.

Room Tip: IF YOU MUST BOOK THIS RESORT..pay extra for the preferred room categories. At least you will get a C...
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
9 Thank K S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chief_c0ncierge, Public Relations Manager at Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana, responded to this review, 13 October 2011
We thank you for taking the time to share your experience regarding your recent stay at Dreams Palm Beach Resort & Spa. We would like to apologize for not completely fulfilling your expectations and we are deeply sorry for the inconveniences you encountered.

As a service oriented company, our objective is not to only fulfill, but to surpass our guest’s expectations; therefore we put our greatest interest into your opinion. We understand that there is always room for improvement and our guest’s experiences play a key role in this continuous process.

We spend a lot of time and effort to teach our employees a second language (ENGLISH) to ensure quality service. We even have onsite an English professor that tutors our employees each day to better communication with our guest; however the mother language here is Spanish and we cannot have all our staff to speak English as a second language and the same could happen to anyone from the Dominican Republic who visits a country where English is the main language; however all the staff who works at the basic channels do speak fluent English like front desk, concierge, concierge express, preferred club, room service, telephone operators, etc.

We have 5 A La Carte Restaurants and 4 of them are Air conditioned.
It is unfortunate to read that you did not find our five A La Carte Restaurants, the buffet and Barefoot Grill of your satisfactions. Our Unlimited Luxury philosophy offers the freedom for our guests to dine in as many restaurants without having any limitations on the amount of entrees as they can be doubled or ordered in various combinations available. Our micro cuisine concept emphasizes on personalized cooking instead of cooking in large industrial quantity which has certainly demonstrated to have a more satisfactory result from our guests. Our executive chef is always available to take care of any special request of food when ours is not of anyone of our guests’ satisfaction. We are very sorry to know this now and that you did not bring this to the attention of the proper person.

It is important to note that seasonal flu and infections (such as gastroenteritis, Norovirus, traveler’s diarrhea and other stomach ailments) are common in the United States, Canada and other countries during some time of the year; however Dreams Palm Beach places the safety and security of its guests as its highest priority. We have in place numerous measures to reduce the spread of illness including stringent protocols for cleaning and disinfecting all areas. We also conduct regular inspections by independent laboratories to ensure food quality and safety; we routinely carry out numerous training programs on food safety and hygiene; and we also have on-site independent medical staff as just some of the protocols and procedures in place at resort. We have over 900 clients having food at all restaurants, room service and drinks at the bars and just some isolated cases like this have been reported and not even here, but after the guests leave and whoever has reported some kind of sickness is been directed to the doctor who is the only one who determines the causes. Not even one case has ever been because of bad food or manipulation conditions. It is a shame that you did not mention or inform this to the management or at least saw the doctor.

Health and Safety inspections are conducted by Crystal Americas Health inspectors (world renowned independent consultants in food safety and water hygiene). We are pleased to inform you that we have always had a clean bill of health in all areas.
As an extra added precaution, we implemented the following action steps:

• Increased the levels of chlorine from 1.5 pm to 3.00 pm in all areas in the hotel including rooms and pools.
• Hand sanitizers in all service areas, at the entrance of the restaurants including back of the house.
• Fumigation in all areas with the product VIREX, which is a strong viral disinfectant
• Water served in hotel is all bottled (Santa Clara, Agua Alaska)
• Back wash to all our pools every two hours
• The water temperatures is over 54 degrees Celsius in all areas
• Disinfecting every 15 minutes of the serving utensils in the buffet.
• Disinfecting of the front desk counter after every Check-in and Check- out,
• Constant disinfecting of all counters in all bars in the hotel.
• All check-out rooms are 100% disinfected with VIREX
• All linens in the room are removed and washed daily
• All mayonnaise base sauces have been eliminated
• All pastry creams have been eliminated
• Sanitizing with VIREX of restaurant tables after every service.

We continue to closely monitor the health and safety and any other need of our guests at Dreams Palm Beach have.

Vendors visit our property twice a week. Currently, they are scheduled Tuesdays and Fridays which provides an opportunity to purchase souvenirs, local jewelry, paintings and other things not available at our shops. Aggressive or pushy behavior to guests is not allowed and sanctions are taken immediately if such an incidence is reported. In addition, security staff is assigned to that area in order to oversee the event and to reassure proper conduct by vendors. It is also a shame that this was not reported.

It is sad to read that you did not find cleanliness in our rooms as we take pride in having many of our employees just working on it. We are proud of having all our rooms every day cleaned and absolutely spotless. We are very surprised to read that you did not find the honeymoon suite to your satisfaction both as this is our top category and it is the first time we hear that one of our guests does not like a rooms like this, however there is always room for improvements and for sure we could have changed you to another room that you could have liked better.

It is also surprising to read that our staff was not friendly at all or is focusing on tip only as the service of our staff is our main assets and we are proud of it. We understand there could be someone who does not indentifies with our philosophy, however we are always supervising them in order to make sure we have selected the right people. City hotels and resorts breathe two different atmospheres, especially in the Caribbean or better yet in the Dominican Republic; it is their nature to be super friendly. We try very hard to create a relaxed and yet fun environment for the mixed variety of guest that we cater to in the resort. We are very sorry that you could not experience this.

It is sad to read that you did not find cleanliness in our property as we take pride in having more than 150 employees just working on it and besides this, we have private inspectors in charge of supervising all areas, making sure we keep all quality and hygiene standards. We respect your perception about our rooms; how ever we can assure you they are all well clean kept. 99% of our guests have total satisfaction with them, and just 1% is not happy with the way it is distributed or the bathroom door, which is as advertised. We had never had a complaint from a bathroom in a honeymoon suite which is our top room category and they are as all our rooms spotless. We are so sorry that you did not mention your dissatisfaction at the preferred club or fronts desk as you would have had another room right away.

We are also very sorry that your mini bar was not restocked properly and this was not brought to our attention either. It is our pleasure to take care of any of our clients' request.

The seaweed is something due to a major force situation, however we work very hard in cleaning the beach and even taking the seaweeds from the ocean, however this is nature and no one can control it, but we fail in trying to get it.

Should you have further observations, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

José Abreu
Chief Concierge
Tel:(809)552-6000 Ext. 1817
Fax: (809) 468-2151
concierge.drepb@dreamsresorts.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ft worth
1 review
Reviewed 10 October 2011

Dreams Palm Beach is EXCELLENTE!!! The staff offers genuine warmth and hospitality from the moment you arrive. It was the best check in process we have ever experienced. We didn't even go to the front desk. We were greeted by Carlos from the Preferred Club and the tone was set. He was friendly and eager to serve. He made our week one that we will never forget. We loved the upgrades of the preferred club especially having breakfast and lunch at the Seaside Grill. The food was great, but the view was breathtaking. All of the evening dining options were fabulous. Again, the service made the vacation! The entertainment team was TOP NOTCH. Our morning walk with Alejandro to games on the beach with Candy Man and shows that truly entertained...it was all a blast. They made us laugh often, and we always had plenty to do. Our room was well appointed, extremely comfortable, and offered a great view. Finally, everything was beautiful. We will definitely return to Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana DR.

Room Tip: We opted for a garden view...didn't spend much time in the room.
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank mitbus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 October 2011

Stayed at this hotel in September and read all the reviews before I went.

Firstly I would say, this hotel is not 5 star. So don't go expecting that and you will have a good time if you take it for what it is. It is a very nice resort, in nice gardens with a lovely, friendly, atmosphere. There are quite a few things that don't make it 5 star. Initially when I arrived it was fairly apparent. The room was nice enough, bathroom very shabby. I forgot my adapter, so went to see the shop to buy one but they'd sold out and sent me to the concierge. She was really unhelpful, not interested and awkward. When I prompted her to make some calls to get one for me it was like pulling teeth to get her to do it. She said she would get back to me, A day later, I hadn't heard from which didn't surprise me. So I asked a cleaner who was really helpful and manage to find me one straight away. (Later in the holiday when flicking through the hotel guide, it refers you to the concierge to borrow adapters which they keep for people to use) This may not seem a big deal, but you expect a high level of service by a concierge in a `5 star` hotel, and we didn't get this from this hotel. In my opinion the concierge was the poorest aspect of the hotel. When we used them on a couple of other simple issues, it was like torture trying to get them to help us.

The food - in my opinion for an all inclusive the food is of a good quality. I would say in the a la cartes, the food was resteraunt quality. Ok, it wasn't amazing, but it was good and nicely presented, in nicely decorated surroundings. When we were there, every night 1 or 2 of the al a cartes were closed each night. We were a bit dissappointed by this, but I suppose just got used to it. There was still always a good selection to choose from. The World Cafe, the buffet resteraunt, again I think was fairly good for mass produced food. There was always something you could find to eat that was nice enough. The staff in there were lovely and smiley. In particular Ramon who always made an effort with us.

The drinks - I thought the drinks and cocktails were of a really good standard for an all inclusive. I've stayed in hotels before where the cocktails are synthetic tasting. These are properly made and served in the appropriate glass. You could have whatever you wanted. The only thing missing on the bar front for us, was that you couldn't actually sit at the bar which we like to do. The main bar area was lobby/lounge style seating which doesn't really appeal to me. I enjoy sitting and meeting new people at the bar.

The beach - I hate to say this but this was a big disspointment to me. I'd read the earlier reviews and thought a bit of seaweed isn't a big deal.....well it isn't a bit of seaweed. There's mounds of it some days both on the beach and in the sea. Each day they were removing several small lorry loads away and that was just in front of our hotel. They just couldn't keep up with it. Plus also, there was alot of rubbish in amongst the seaweed mounds which I thought was disgusting. This would probably be the only reason I wouldn't return to this hotel unfortunately as I love nice beaches and clear water.

The entertainment staff - this group of staff have sooo much energy. To be honest some of them were hilarious! Gasolina in particular. They really work hard and give the place a really good atmosphere. They are all really likeable and harmless. There's a very nice vibe at this resort.

So overall, we had a really good time here. The hotel actually really grew on us over the 2 weeks. I think it's important to say that you have to accept the cultural differences to a certain extent when considering the service from the staff. At first we didn't find people that efficient or professional. But after a while we realised it was partly their culture. They are just a bit more laid back then I think we are used to. But we got used to it and excepted that we weren't going to get 5 star service. If it wasn't for the beach, I would go back there.

Room Tip: I wouldn't upgrade to the Preferred rooms. I find it all very pretencious and gather it wasn...
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank sweetpeakirk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 October 2011

We just returned from a 2 week stay and had a great time. We stayed in the preferred section and check in was a breeze. The staff were generally very helpful and the entertainment people were excellent. We ate at all the restaurants except the Asian one and had great service and food was also great especially in the French and Italian ones. We ate breakfast at the World Grill and it was good also. The grounds were kept up really well. We didn`t have a problem with our room after the coffee maker was replaced. We didn`t spend too much time on the beach as the pools were the best place to be especially around the swim up bar.We found the nightly entertainment to be well done. We would stay here again.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank jrmunro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 October 2011

My husband and i stayed at Dreams Palm Beach for our honeymoon in Sept. We had an absolutely amazing time! The staff is great and definately go out of their way to make your stay the best it can be. Entertainment was great and food was very good too... We stayed at a resort in Mexico the year before and there is no comparison. I would go back to Dreams Palm Beach in a heart beat. Overall amazing trip!!!

  • Stayed September 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank crystalc359
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Worth, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 7 October 2011

This is a great place! The staff is very friendly and helpful and has made our vacation very relaxing. We decided that the negative reviews are simply from people that can't be pleased. If you're one of those people, please don't come here with your negative attitude and hate on these awesome people. The food has been good - one couple we encountered had nothing good to say about the Italian, while another man thought it was he best lasagna he ever had. It's all up to individual taste. Come prepared for a good time and the staff will do all they can to accommodate.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Brad B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana

Property: Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana
Address: Cabeza de Toro, Punta Cana 23000, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#14 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#21 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#29 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana 4*
Number of rooms: 500
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facing the Caribbean Sea, white sand beach and lush gardens, Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana boasts 500 spacious rooms and ample suites surrounded by swaying palm trees and views of endless blue waters stretching to the horizon - the perfect setting in paradise. Take advantage of all the unlimited luxury activities Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana has to offer. Swim, sail, snorkel or windsurf in the turquoise Caribbean, enjoy fine a-la-carte dining, sip favorite cocktails at one of our bars. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dreams Palm Beach Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Occidental Punta Cana
Occidental Allegro Punta Cana
Punta Cana Occidental
Sunscape Punta Cana
Punta Cana Dreams Palm Beach
Punta Cana Allegro

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