We were here for five days in July for a meeting. The Dominican Republic is a safe country with incredibly friendly locals. Our only annoying part was at the airport with all the hustlers trying to "help" you find your transportation and carry your bags. Ignore them, walk past them, and once you are past them the cabs/shuttles/tour sites are right there.
Check-in went fairly well. Be sure to bring copies of your shuttle arrangement and check-in confirmation number. We didn't have this and it seemed to cause a lot of confusion, even though our names were in the computer. The property at Paradisus is beautiful and very well maintained. When staying in the Reserve you have access to the entire property (except the small Royal section, unless you pay extra for it. We don't think it was necessary). The Reserve is a little quieter than the regular areas and tended to shut down before midnight. If you are looking to be up later the late-night bars and entertainment were in the Paradisus main lobby, which was only a short walk away.
The food was good and we enjoyed most of our meals. Our favorite meal by far was Passion. There was a surcharge to eat here ($45/person), but it was worth it. If you're going to pay this much money to come to an all-inclusive for a special event then don't be cheap and be sure to splurge on dinner here. The service and food were on par with any high-end American restaurant. We both did the tasting menu and loved every dish. Breakfast every morning was at the Gabi in the Reserve. It was good with a wide variety of food. Don't eat lunch or dinner at the Gabi as it is mediocre buffet food and you can do better. A better buffet lunch is found at the Gabi Beach. Another notable dinner was at Vento in the Reserve. It's advertised as Italian, but it really wasn't. The menu had a wide variety and we enjoyed the food. Fuego is a Latin American fusion cuisine and we really enjoyed our meal there. Good food and great service. If you stick around after dinner the disco opens next door. One disappointment was Lapalapa, which had a $20/person surcharge and was completely empty except for us. Maybe others already knew what we didn't. I don't think the food here was all that good and it certainly wasn't worth the surcharge.
The bars were one of the highlights of the trip. The bartenders provided superb service and mixed great drinks. Again, the Reserve closes before midnight and is much quieter, so if you are looking for a more active nightlife then walk to the main area where there is much more activity. The cups at all the bars are small, so consider bringing a Tervis Tumbler or some other cup of your own.
The one afternoon activity we did was the cigar rolling class. It was very informative and they gave us all a cigar to smoke during class. I highly recommend this class if you enjoy cigars. He also sells cigars and is a good source for Cubans and local cigars if you are interested.
The only other thing to keep in mind is that many of the employees don't speak great English. It is their country after all, so we can't blame them for this. Knowledge of some basic Spanish will help you tremendously. Despite this, every employee we met went out of their way to accommodate us and were incredibly friendly. The language differences were a minimal issue at most.
We would definitely go back. It gets 4/5 stars for good (not great) food, great service, a beautiful beach and pools, and incredibly friendly employees.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Explore The Reserve, our new boutique resort within a resort, designed for those whose stay in a luxury suite is as important as sun, sea and sand. Including three pools and a la carte restaurants, YHI Spa and gym, Swim up Suites with direct access to the pool Family Concierge Suites. Take benefit of your stay at The Reserve and use its facilities and services as well as the ones in Paradisus Palma Real Resort. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Priceline, Southall Travel, Ebookers, Odigeo, Expedia, Hotels.com, Holiday Gems, Traveltool, S.L.U., Hotel.de and HotelQuickly so you can book your The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real 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:
- The Reserve At Paradisus Palma Real Hotel Punta Cana