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“Nothing has topped this vacation yet!”

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Excellence Punta Cana
Ranked #14 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Reviewed 23 June 2014

My husband and I stayed in February 2014 with two other couples and everyone loved this resort! We contemplated this resort again for our Christmas vacation trip in December 2014, however, there are just so many resorts out there that we felt we should try a different place.
This resort is considered the best one according to feedback we got from tour guides – if you are staying at Excellence Punta Cana you are lucky, they told us. The resort is, unfortunately, about an hour from the airport, which but wasn't great but was worth the ride.

Check-in:
Check-in was quick and efficient. One of the couples we were with will not stay on a ground floor room and the resort was advised of that months before we arrived so when they found out they had a ground floor room “crap hit the fan” and they had to wait quite a while to get a room on the second or third floors but they eventually got it.

Rooms:
Our room was in building 14 on the ground floor and it was OK for the first couple of nights, but by the third night there were sand fleas in the room and I got bitten like crazy!!! They immediately fogged the room which helped with that issue, but the A/C was wretched. We had it set for the coldest temperature possible and I was still sweating while sleeping at night. Service came to look at it but said nothing was wrong. By the end of the 4th night I couldn’t sleep, and the A/C wasn’t the only issue – the “stores” on the beach were right on the other side of the fence that was about 50 feet from the door to our room and there were dogs barking their heads off all night long! I am not one to complain but when I was exhausted and teary-eyed one of the ladies we were there with and my husband both insisted they move our room and they did so without issue. Moved us to the third floor of building 8 in the Excellence Club. The room looked the same as the other one we had but the A/C worked and no barking dogs at night and the view was spectacular!!! They will do anything and everything possible to make your vacation as comfortable as possible!

Room Service:
24 hour room service!!! FABULOUS!!! Everyone in our party took advantage of the room service, which was quick and delicious.

Bar service:
Not a single complaint about the service at any of the bars on the resort! The Chilean Sauv Blanc was delightful! We were all very impressed as our whole group are white wine drinkers and the typical Spanish White they have in the Caribbean sucks!

Food:
Not a bad meal was had by anyone! We loved poolside restaurant – they even brought food to our chairs poolside (outside the restaurant). All the food was fresh and delicious no matter where you ate! The a la carte restaurants were amazing and you didn’t need a reservation for any of them. Half way through one meal they brought a platter of grilled lobster to our table that we didn’t order – two in our party don’t eat seafood (I know – crazy, huh?!?!). It was so Yummy!!! Pizzas were delivered for free poolside every day at lunchtime! So good!

Entertainment:
Shows were great, dancing in the lobby bar late at night, amazing Valentine’s Day party. Lots of things to do every night.

Beach:
4 of the 6 of us aren’t beach people but the other two loved it!!! They could walk for hours and did so almost every day. Not a complaint was had about the beach and it was so very close to the pool that you could turn around in your chair and take a picture of the beach from poolside.

Pools:
There are two pools – one large freeform pool with a swim-up bar which is where we hung out the whole week. Lots of chairs, no need to “reserve” them. The smaller pool was considered more of a “party pool” and wasn’t as quiet but two of our group had their room overlooking this pool and they didn’t have any complaints as the pool closed down at 6pm. Both pools are clean and well-maintained and very refreshing.

In summary – we loved this resort and its amenities, service, and size and would consider going back!

Room Tip: The higher number buildings are too far from all the amenities - we started in #14 and had barking d...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank ChristineRaby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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5,077 - 5,083 of 13,346 reviews

Reviewed 22 June 2014

My wife and I went to Excellence resorts in dominican republic punta cana and came back home a few days ago. First thing we arrived, we were greeted warmly with a glass of champagne and a wet towel. Great first impression! The rest of our trip at excellence was filled with great service, friendliness and attention to detail. The nighttime entertainment was diverse and definitely catered to the adult only crowd. The scenic view of the resort is beautiful, subtle and tropical in every way. The pool side bar is really cool and the restaurant food was good. We took in one of the adventure packages and we went snorkeling, scuba(they call it snuka) diving and steered a speedboat! All firsts for me!! Also went to Bella Mare and smoked a Dominican cigar, bought some souvenirs and Mama Juana( a mix of honey, wine and rum fermenting in wood chips, don't worry, you can't leave without hearing about Mama Juana)! Our Amstar representative was a proud Dominican who gave us great advice on what we can do and his knowledge of the country was obvious. He also shared some of the real life culture and conditions of a Dominican with us because we asked. Our excitement of being there was apparent to everyone who walked by us as we said hola to everybody and always received a warm response back. We tipped regularly and it is GREATLY appreciated by the staff because those tips is what makes a huge difference in their lives. I would recommend to bring $100.00 in ones and tip whenever you can. Obviously you don't have to, but we were humbled by the Dominican struggle. We looked forward to tipping because this experience was changing our lives too, just in a different way. If there was one or two things that we wished were a little different, it would be the roughness of the water and the limited selection for lunch. The waves are pretty strong on that part of the coastline so if you are looking for the turquoise colored water with tranquility, this is not the place. Nevertheless, my wife and I enjoyed the waves and being with each other. There is a certain degree of Americanization(yes there was a Philly cheesesteak on a menu) of food but there was more than enough of other options to avoid it. Overall, we were in paradise and the staff's favorite phrase when we said thank you was "es un placer!" Translation, it is my pleasure. My wife and I would strongly recommend Excellence Dominican Republic punta cana to any adult couples or a group of friends looking for a wonderful resort experience. We want to go back tomorrow!!!

Room Tip: Don't expect a free upgrade by mentioning that you are on a honeymoon or anniversary. At least t...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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22  Thank robert c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 June 2014

If you love excellent service, you will love the Excellence Punta Cana. From your arrival until you leave, the staff will do everything in their power to make sure that youre stay is awesome! Although you can plan your excursions through the many onsite tours a few steps from the front desk, we preplanned our itinerary with the hotel before our arrival. And let me say this, Senorita Esperanza Alcantara did an outstanding job in making sure our itinerary went off without a hitch. The food was very good and the restaurants cooked many meals to order. Restaurants such as Chez Isabelle, Toscana, and the Private Dinner on the beach are exemplary. The entertainment, including the salute to Michael Jackson were fantastic. While I'm not a drinker, there were plenty of beverages all around and even stocked in the room. The room we had was a swim-up Junior suite and let me tell you, it lived up to its billing. Waiters were on-hand pool side to serve. The bed itself was great for me as I like a sturdy mattress for my back. My wife would have liked it a little softer (that's why we have a Sleep Number Mattress at home...lol). If you wanted to vegetate in your room, however, the TV, room service and onsite Wi-Fi served their purpose. While the Wi-Fi had a tendency to go out every so often it was still on par with Wi-Fi from your average Internet shop. There is plenty to do on site at the Excellence. From bike tours to horse back riding the fun on site is endless. The Miile Spa!!!!! . . . nothing else need be said!!! If you want a great massage ask for Santa or Tatianna. They are both superb. I would be remiss if I didn't give a personal shout out to "Luz" one of the hostesses of entertainment, and Delores and Juan excellent servers at Toscana. Because of them our stay was simply perfect!!!! Yep....Not a bad word for the Excellence . . . Not a bad word at all.

Room Tip: Swim-up Junior Suite in Building 1 and 4 are excellent.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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12  Thank Ronniestew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2014

From our first day to our last our day was amazing!! Our room was gorgeous and very well kept. A lovely whirlpool bath with an amazing shower. The water ran from the ceiling creating a wonderful massage! Our view of the beach included a gazebo and beautiful walkways to the beach. Bonus... A garden and ocean front view!

The white sand beach was flawless! And the service was more than accommodating. Drinks were hand served and the event staff kept everyone lively with sports and games.
The pool was never over crowded and playing volleyball was a blast!! Food on the beach was fantastic! Best nachos ever!!

Only twice did we wait to get seated for dinner. No more than 20 minutes and who could complain with the reggae band playing in the lobby. Oregano, Spice and the Lobster house were my favorites but not one restaurant was disappointing.

The people were amazing!! Staff in all areas were beyond friendly. For example, when we asked Miguel (a front desk attendant) to take a photo of us, he not only took 12 but he walked us around the lobby and posed us like a professional photographer. Worth well more than the $5 we tipped him.

Although we may not return. We have the world to see. After being to 6 or 7 others (ocho rios, negril, playa del Carmen, nasa etc...) I highly recommend this resort. Don't hesitate to book.

Room Tip: East side ocean front view. Room 2109 to be precise!
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Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
17  Thank Heatherkaye482
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2014

We returned from our 7th stay at Excellence Punta Cana a few days ago. It was wonderfull, as usual. I can't say enough about the service, particularly Roberto and Emely in public relations, and the concierge staff, but really, the entire staff was terrific. I don't think the word "no" is in their vocabulary.

Unlike most of the resorts in the Punta Cana region, Excellence is built parallel to the beach, as opposed to back from the beach, so all rooms are close to the beach. The lobby sits in the middle, close to the beach, with rooms stretching out on either side. You're never far from the beach or the amenities. Very well designed. It has 2000 feet of beach frontage for only 450 rooms, so the beach is uncrowded, and there are more than enough loungers, palapas, and beds to go around. There are no resorts within a mile or so, so there isn't a lot of traffic. Very serene.

The lazy river pool runs for about 1000 feet along the edge of the beach, so you can be by the pool and the beach at the same time. Three bars service the beach, nicely spaced out, so you're never far from a bar. But you never need to get out of your chair to get a drink, because the service is frequent and prompt. And there's a very nice swim-up bar, sort of in its own cove.

There are 10 bars in total. Premium liquor is served at all of them. The fresh squeezed margaritas were some of the best I've ever had. You also get 4 or 5 full sized bottle of liquor in the room, and 24 hour room service should you wish to stay in the room.

With 9 a la carte restaurants (no reservations required), it's difficult to imagine someone not finding food to their liking. We didn't like a particular dish at one of the restaurants, so we ordered something else, and it was great. Because there are no reservations, you can dine at multiple restaurants in one evening. The Flavor Market is a tapas restaurant. You can have a variety of appetizers there, and then go to another restaurant for your main course, for example. And maybe another for dessert. Whatever you want. You decide where and when you want to eat at the time.

The saxophone / piano combo at the Martini bar is great. They have a live band with dancing in the courtyard by the beach, then a show, and then the live band again. There's also a great sports bar with billiards, table tennis, foosball, and air hockey. Late at night, there's a disco. The Oregano restaurant (pizza and pasta) is open late for the disco and casino crowd. We ordered pizza for take-out, and ate it at the Martini bar. It was an exceptionally good pizza.

The lobster on this trip was particularly good. They brought it from the Lobster House to our favorite table at The Grill, overlooking the ocean. We particularly liked Chez Isabelle (French). Spice (Asian) was very good as well. We typically had a la carte breakfast at the Lobster House, as we're not buffet people, but we did try the buffet for breakfast, and it was quite good. Great omelettes, made to order, lots of fruit, juices, etc. and a mimosa station.

The weather was perfect, every day. Nothing but sun, not windy - enough of a breeze to make it not too hot. No mosquito or sand flea bites, and I didn't use any repellent.

The grounds are impeccably kept. It's a beautifull, tropical vibe, which is what I look for in a Caribbean vacation. There's lots to do if you want, or you can just chill in quiet tranquility.

I highly recommend this resort.

Room Tip: I like the top floor rooms, with the vaulted ceilings.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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24  Thank MHEATH1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2014

I'll start off by saying that we have only stayed at 3 other adults only. Valentin Imperial Maya, Princessa Del Mar(cuba), Catalonia Royal Bavaro (DR)

The bad- Why not start with the worst, right? Nothing was terrible. A few little annoyances and hardly worth mentioning but what the heck. The service could sometimes be hit or miss. Sometimes you sat down and were greeted with a smile and served right away, even before leaving a tip. Other times you would sit there forever before even so much as a smile and we found more often than not it didn't seem to matter if you tipped. Now, that being said, we aren't rich people, not even close, so maybe our tips didn't catch the eye of the server. The other thing we noticed was that some of the drink cups seemed to be used again right after someone else. We noticed this at the Dominican buffet on the beach. Makes sense I suppose seeing as there isn't a dish washer on the beach lol. We aren't smokers but we do smoke when we travel and we noticed the lack of ash trays throughout the resort. Not a huge issue though but be sure not to litter.

The good- Pretty much everything! Drinks were amazing and perhaps it was just good luck but the food was great! I feel like the bad food reviews are left from those who spent way too much time eating at the buffets as the food there was pretty awful most of the time. Stay away from the buffet and you are sure to love the food. Chez and Spice were our favorites. As mentioned in other reviews, yes, sometimes what you ordered would not fit the description perfectly and sometimes they would not have certain menu items available but there is lots to choose from.

The room- Loved our room and it was the basic garden view. Be very choosey as to where your room is located because it looks like a bunch are located right off the pool. Maybe that's a plus for others but definitely not for us! We like privacy and a quiet yard. Get the bottom floor. The other two floors will struggle to keep up with the A/C or so we were told by other guests. As for the countless reviews about the birds in the hallways being very loud at night,...there are no birds, they are frogs, we saw a huge one and yes, they are crazy loud. You will need your A/C on full blast to cover up the sound. This worked quite well for us otherwise it would have been very hard to sleep.

The beds- They are firm. Not hard, not cheap whatsoever. Firm.


The beach- seriously, go to the far right and there is the calmest water you will ever see. No waves whatsoever. It's right in the middle of reef so it's super calm. Choose not to do this and you will face some huge waves.

the pool- amazing! Not enough floats and people will hide them while they eat (rude idiots) but do not hesitate to uncover them and take them when not in use. People will reserve beds but again, take their stuff off and hurl it to the side if its been unoccupied for a long time.

the shows- pretty cheesy but good none the less. The Michael Jackson show had huge potential but the sound quality was horrible and MJ's lip syncing was often so far off it was hysterical. Either way, I can appreciate that there must have been many hours of practice and overall it was very entertaining.

The staff- I've never understood why people start their review with a "Hey, it's us, the Smith's!". Like out of the thousands of people the staff meet every week, they are the couple that will stand out and be remembered. Then again, this is how you know that the staff are amazing(most)! When you leave believing that you made a life long friend. It is their job to make you feel like you are the only couple that matters and that you can tell they work really hard at perfecting their social skills.

Tipping- Okay, I got the feeling here that, being a pricier resort, you had to tip right up there with the bigwigs in order to woo them at all. I remember tipping 5 dollars in Cuba and being treated like royalty after that and never being forgotten or having to wait for anything. This place is not like that. I'm thinking that most servers here are used to 10's and 20's as the norm so bring lot's of money!

I'm sure I'm missing some vital information but I hate reading long reviews so I'll cut it here. All in all, we loved this resort!! One of our favorites and we are pretty picky people. I did get violently ill on day 3 for about 24 hours but the fact that I still loved it says a lot! Would I return? I've only been to 3 other resorts so probably not anytime soon but someday, probably. I highly doubt any other affordable resort in the big 3 (DR, Mex, Cuba) will be able to top this one (though Valentin came insanely close)

Room Tip: Look at the map, don't choose right off the pool.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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14  Thank Andy F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2014

I booked this all-inclusive resort after hearing detailed recommendations from a travel agent. My initial thought process was "I want somewhere that I don't have to count money, stick receipts in my wallet, or hell, even carry a wallet. I don't want to have to worry about not being able to afford something every time a card is swiped after a meal."

This resort was perfect for mindless enjoyment of the tropical locale. Room service is included and available 24x7, and the menus are pretty complete. No choosing between stale pizza or marked-up yogurt cups; there are cooked-to-order burgers, multiple salads, pasta, sandwiches and more. The in-room minibar is included too, and restocked daily. In addition to beer and small wine coolers, we had a dry red wine, Dominican rum, Stoli vodka, and Jim Beam, which were also replaced as needed.

The bars are all great. Of note there is a swim-up bar in the main pool and an ocean deck that has daily theme parties right on the beachfront. They can make almost any drink request you can throw at them - but make sure to try a coco loco.

The restaurants offer a fairly diverse menu...as someone else said, it's not Vegas, but many of the appetizers and main courses are satisfying and you can try as many as you like!

Also as another reviewer said, this property is not brand new. There are signs of use, and while everything is clean and well-kept, you can see signs of former splendor everywhere you look.

One thing that my wife and I GREATLY enjoyed was the lack of any small children on the resort. We wanted a relaxing honeymoon far from the cries of little kids, and that is what we got. Because the resort is so secluded (probably a 20+ minute walk either way until you hit the next one), the fear of theft is also minimal. We took camcorders, cash, etc to the beach with us and never felt at risk. The palapas on the beach are plentiful, though on perfect days go early to get a good one. The pool loungers seemed to fill up pretty quickly; and despite the published "no reserving of loungers" policy, we never saw it being enforced and there were plenty being "held."

The nightly shows were ok; personally I am just not a big concertgoer, but the Michael Jackson show was well-done as was the audience-participation "Perfect Match" show. Each night also featured a different band in the main plaza area.

We also REALLY enjoyed the SPA. We booked a 100-minute couples ritual for $300 (supposedly discounted from $450), but it was COMPLETELY worth it. The sequencing and overall of skill of the masseuses made me not even care about the price tag, and thought I wasn't hawking the clock I'm pretty sure they went a little longer since we were the last couple of the day.

Since this place was so great for us, really the only thing I can complain about is the $28 sunscreen in the on-site mini-market. Bring plenty of your own in advance! (Or purchase from the local mercado right outside the resort, to the left, on the beach).

Bottom line, I would love to make returning here a regular tradition.

Room Tip: The oceanfront terraces are great!
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank Matthew F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Excellence Punta Cana

Address: Playas Uvero Alto, Punta Cana, 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 Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#9 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#12 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#14 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#14 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: £209 - £476 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Excellence Punta Cana 4.5*
Number of rooms: 464
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This quaint, colonial-style resort is the ideal destination for couples seeking secluded romantic getaways. Nestled among palms on a perfect white-sand beach on a remote stretch of Punta Cana's Caribbean shoreline, Excellence Punta Cana provides the perfect All-Inclusive playground for adults only and is also home to a world-class spa, state-of-the-art fitness center and an exceptional range of activities and services. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Secrets Excellence Punta Cana
Excellence Resort Punta Cana
Excellence Punta Cana Resort
Secrets Punta Cana
Excellence Punta Cana Dominican Republic
Excellence Dominican Republic
Punta Cana Excellence Hotel
Excellence Punta Cana Hotel
Secret Excellence Resort Punta Cana
Punta Cana Secrets Excellence

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