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“Lovely but not 5*”

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Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #29 of 110 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Lovely but not 5*”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 August 2014 via mobile

We visited the esmerelda for our honeymoon & had a lovely time.
The room was dated but very clean & a good size. Mini bar was renewed every day with beer, pop, water, a packet of crisps & 3 mini spirits. Rooms cleaned daily but not always clean towels given. We once received a surprise bible bath from the butler but other than that we never heard from him. Tried to contact him once with little luck.
Restaurant had a good variety of food, something for everyone. Did get a bit repetitive by the second week though, even with using the other restaurants. Don Pablo was the best we tried, lovely food & the best service by far. Garden grill was the worst, took 20 minutes to be served and give order. Foodwas mediocre so we left before desert- as did many guests- staff didn't bat an eyelid.
Grounds were kept well & most staff were very friendly.
Around the pool beds were always available but the best spots did get reserved early- even though this is prohibited nothing is done about it. The bar had a great selection of spirits & other drinks & at times the trainee bar lady would come & take orders. The male staff never did this.
We were prepared to give tips & did every day. This made no difference to the service we received.
The entertainment at the esmerelda wasn't the best. Bars closed at 11. The main entertainment was ok but again repetitive.
We both got upset stomachs for 3 days but couldn't put it down to anything particular. It appears this happened to a few other guests we spoke to.
Overall we did have a good honeymoon but did have high expectations with it claiming to be a 5 star hotel, which left us disappointed.

Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Bell-Clark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 1 September 2014
Dear Guest,

It is with great regret to learn that we could not reach your expectations during your honeymoon and for that reason you left disappointed.

I would like to thank you for highlighting our clean rooms and the nice surprise made by the butler, great variety of food at the restaurants, especially the best service and food you tried at the Don Pablo.

I hope you could consider giving us the opportunity to host you again in the near future.

Best regards,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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6,535 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,504)
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Virginia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 August 2014

We just got back from the our quick vacation 8/24-8/28. This is an excellent choice of AI resort for family. There are so much to do at the pool, at the beach or if you just want to sit/walk on the beach, you are in the right place.
Lounge chairs are easy to find at the pool. Beach chairs with the hut are plenty. Food: we loved the Bella Italia, the filet mignon was very good; Le gourmet was okay, service was very slow and food was ok, no wow there, the BBQ restaurant was excellent - must try - casual and good steak, grill ribs and fish.
The staff are very friendly, they treat you like family, always smile, and very attentive. We were given one room with pool view and once with garden view which has a view of nice shrubs and plants but my daughter wants a pool view. We talked to Wilkin at the front desk. he always smiles, he is very friendly and attentive. He found us another room with a pool view the next day. Emily from the activity desk was very professional and very courteous. She helped us switching restaurant reservations and arranged a beautiful cake and champagne for our wedding anniversary celebration. Angel at the Bella Italia restaurant is very funny and attentive. He made us feel very special, the whole staff came out with a surprise birthday cake for my husband at dinner. What a great treat! We definitely give this experience two thumbs up for the friendly staff at this Esmeralda resort, for great service, great location, best value for the family beach vacation! We will definitely come back soon. Almost forget... The spa was very nice, our family of four enjoyed the spa tremendously! And don't forget to order a drink from the lobby bar, have a champagne and hors d'oeuvres at 5pm by the cappuccino bar in lobby.

Room Tip: Any room with pool view is good, remember there is no elevator in the entire property.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank LadyBug123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 1 September 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you for trusting in Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts and for acknowledging our outstanding service, lovely food, friendly and familiar staff and our Bella Italia restaurant that you loved.

It will be delightful to welcome you once again and provide you and family the most absolutely fantastic experiences in our Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda.

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Many hugs for you!!

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Chicago, Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 August 2014

We stayed at Luxury Bahia Esmeralda from August 16 to August 21. A beautiful, well-maintained hotel with nice pools. The staff is very friendly, accommodating, hard working, and fun. A few stood out as very accommodating and nice: Beiker- our favorite!!! , Anthony, Franklin, Bladimir, Raul, Jose, Mabel, Sinthya
The food was plentiful and delicious.
The grounds were always neat and so clean.
The beach was gorgeous.Chairs and umbrellas everywhere with a beautiful ocean right in front of you.
We enjoyed our time here and had a pleasurable stay. I read tons of reviews but was not disappointed in any way with the Esmeralda. Thank you to all the staff at La Esmeralda for making our vacation such a wonderful experience! I will definitely recommend this resort to friends and family.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Yoni N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 4 September 2014
Dear Yonka,

We feel proud to read that you had an amazing vacation and the staff made you a wonderful experience.

We will be delighted to cater you once again in our Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda to enjoy our delicious food, wonderful staff, gorgeous beach, and immaculate grounds.

Thank you for preferring Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts!

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Sao Paulo, SP
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2014

Even going alone, my stay in Bahia Principe Esmeralda was great. Top for me was the kindness of everyone there, all the time serving with a big smile. Room and facilities are great and in a very good shape. Food and drinks in high quality (more than I expected).

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Rossano_CD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 29 August 2014
Dear Rosanno,

Your excellent experience is a true statement of the dedication of our staff to guarantee that you have a memorable stay.

We are looking towards your next visit to thank you personally your comment. Thank you very much.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 August 2014

I enjoyed my vacation on the week of August 16 -23rd in Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda resort with a group of 32 for a friend’s wedding. From the time of our arrival staff was very friendly and accommodating.

After registering, my friend and I were approached by butler Ramon Diaz who took us around the resort and showed us the beach, pool and nearby restaurant, then took us to our room and explained the services. On the day of the wedding he had arranged a beautiful decoration in the room for the Bride and Groom as well for their parents which included the following morning breakfast in bed. Thanks to him he made us feel special with his great personality and service; by the way, it was pleasure to meet you, Ramon.

Rooms are spacious and well maintained. The towels are changed twice a day and the fridge in the room was always stocked especially with plenty of water, as I had requested.
I loved how there was an accessible coffee machine in the main lobby for guests to use whenever they wanted all day long, with different specialty coffees.

Restaurants & service: I attended two buffet dinners and I was amazed with the large selection of delicious food and the way it was displayed. I also attended two a la-carte dinners. The “Tuna Tatar” at Don Pablo was excellent. For lunch, every day we ate at the Snack Bar on the beach. The ambiance was nice and the staff (waiters and cook) was fun to hang out with as they danced and joked even while they were still working very hard to serve us.

Beach: personally, it was too crowded for me. It was very difficult to find lounge chair and since there was a large group of us usually we all sat together in the second to last row. It was really hot as there was no breeze – but at least some shade from the umbrellas – as the sun beamed down on us. The ocean water was beautiful once you passed the shallow area and all the seaweed, but eventually the current would clean everything away and the water would be crystal clear. I found that on my last day the ocean was the most beautiful to swim in as it was the cleanest that day. Anyways,can’t do anything to control nature.

Pool – I didn’t use it, but everyone else did and enjoyed it. I noticed though that the bar in the pool was always very busy
.
Entertainment – Due to our pre-wedding gatherings and dinners we spend much of our time together and not looking for much other entertainment. There weren't any shows, but we did have karaoke once during our stay in the evening at the snack bar and we all had a great time! We did, however, go outside of the resort for karaoke on another night. The only problem was that at 11:00 PM everything stopped. We offered money to buy us more time to extend the night but they wouldn't do it. The same happened with our wedding entertainment. The DJ would not play any longer though we all were dancing and having good time. Apparently the reason was because the Disco opens at 11:00 PM.

In conclusion, the place was very nice to relax. There is something for everyone, a great staff to make your stay even more enjoyable and beautiful gardens to walk through.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank flowers098
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 29 August 2014
Dear Guest,

It is a pleasure for all of us to hear that we could fulfill your expectations from the time you arrived, during your friend’s wedding. I would like to thank you for sharing your experience and your praises to Ramon Diaz, who made you feel special with his personal attention.

It is wonderful to see that you consider this is a nice place to relax and have something for everyone.

Hoping to cater you once again!

Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a dream wedding in Punta Cana.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 August 2014

The Hotel grounds are beautiful. The rooms are very dated and in need of remodel! We had a huge roach in our room and one managed to stowaway in our luggage and jumped out when we got home which was killed instantly of course. If you are traveling with elderly or handicap people this hotel is not for you! They make no effort to help or provide special transportation to assist and it is a great walk form one place to another if you struggle to walk. The staff was spotty yes they have some phenomenal people on staff but for the most part you need to tip for better service don't get me wrong I am a huge believer in tipping but I usually tip when I receive good service not to get decent service and by that I mean instead of waiting 30 min for a drink if I tip before I would get it in 15 min! If you don't speak Spanish you will have a hard time with the staff even the English speaking staff. I speak fluent Spanish but my wife doesn't she wanted to go para sailing with my daughter and asked the English speaking staff member if she can book a time today because we were leaving to go home the next day and he said all he had open was 1pm the next day which clearly would not work for us, I went and asked the staff member in Spanish and my wife and daughter were para sailing in less than an hour! I was very disappointed with this hotel because to be rated as a 5 star hotel it did not stand up to its rating! The food was very good but that is all I can really speak well about. I would really consider looking into other places to stay if you are considering Punta Cana!

Room Tip: Ask for building 90 or 91 they are closest to the beach and pool maybe you will get it we asked for...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jxr00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 29 August 2014
Dear guest,

I cannot tell you how sorry we are for the inconveniences you have experienced during your stay with us. Please I sincerely ask you to apologize us because you felt you did not received the service you deserve. As you said, it´s not mandatory to give tip to the staff, we leave this gesture in consideration of each client.

It’s our sincere hope to have the opportunity to welcome you in the near future in any of our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, and demonstrate you our commitment to excellence.

Many hugs and greetings,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ontario
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 August 2014

We were a group of 6 people and we stayed at the Grand Bahia Principe Esmeralda from Aug 16 to Aug 23. We had 4 rooms and they were all treated the same way! The rooms were super clean and modern. Cleaned two times per day and the minibar re-stocked daily. Grand Bahia itself is a big resort and actually contains 5 resorts in one.The grounds were absolutely beautiful and very well kept, which made for some nice scenic walks in the evenings. The staff were all very friendly and more than willing to help, and it's impossible to get bored with all the activities and shows available! We took the Saona island trip and it was worth the money. We found the main buffet and the beach snack bar filled with great quality foods! Same for the a la carte restaurants. All dishes were delicious and offered a nice variety! Maiko was the best! A big thank you to Yaquerlin from the Reception desk and all the bartenders! Amazing trip and we'd definitely return!

Room Tip: You can bargain for every trip you take or for any activity you want to do (parasailing, banana boat...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank oviciu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viancagraciano, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 29 August 2014
Dear Guest,

It is a pleasure for me to see that you were able to make you feel this was the best vacation ever and we were better as you expected. At Bahia Principe our goal is to make your stay become an unforgettable experience. It´s wonderful that this was one of your best holiday and you definitely return for another amazing trip.

Have a nice day and thank you for choosing us and appreciate the good job made by the staff !!!

Best regards,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection

Property: Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection
Address: Crta. Arena Gorda - Macao, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#7 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#25 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#26 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#28 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection 4*
Number of rooms: 570
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 2 Pools Sun terrace 4 Jacuzzis Sun umbrellas and loungers Beach and pool towel service BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, 3 tennis courts, 1 padel tennis court (additional charge), multi-sports court Water activity centre Motorised water sports (additional charge) WiFi access in the lobby (free) and in rooms (additional charge) Entertainment amphitheatre 2 buffet restaurants 3 speciality restaurants 3 Bars 1 Snack- bar Wedding gazebo Punta Blanca Golf Club: 18 hole Punta Blanca Golf Club, designed by Nick Price (additional charge) Pueblo Principe: Shopping and Leisure Mall with local craft stores, live music, shows, stores, bars, karaoke, disco and casino. Rooms, 570 Deluxe Junior Suite Room facilities: King size bed or two full size beds Air conditioning Ceiling fan Sitting area with sofa Terrace Fully-equipped bathroom with hydromassage bath tub and separate shower, hair dryer and magnifying mirror Bathrobe and slippers VIP amenities Radio-alarm clock Flat screen satellite TV Coffee-making facilities Ironing set Pillow menu Umbrella 24 hour room service Minibar WiFi Other services Medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Specialised service for organising weddings, incentive trips, events and anniversaries Personalised menus (for celiacs, diabetics, etc.) Available on request ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Esmeralda Hotel Punta Cana

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