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“There are ALWAYS two sides to every story!”

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The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club
Ranked #39 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 2 March 2014

In November, My wife and I had decided to travel to a new (to us) island retreat for a week or so in January, to compare and contrast other destinations to our favorite in the Virgin Islands. We have done this before (thats how you find the real gems...at least for your tastes). As a Lifetime Starwood Platinum guest, I have enjoyed the opportunity of traveling around the world, enjoying some of the most beautiful Starwood or, for that matter, any properties imaginable.

Noteably...as we started our search, we came upon the Westin Puna Cana...a brand new addition to Starwood and one that represents a significant corporate movement forward in terms of Starwood future development in this region of the world. So far so good...but...while conducting our due diligence on this very new property, we began to read of negative stories about the physical building problems, the lack of skill and professionalism of the staff and the failure of some of the basic necessities such as internet and cable TV.

These items and much more were widely published on this TRIP ADVISOR Forum. Because the Westin Puna Cana had just opened three weeks previously, we were very concerned as we had only negative comments to deal with.
My philosophy has always been the direct approach affords the best opportunity for reviewing each of the issues to determine the facts...I know, some would say that when you talk to the Devil in Hell, you can expect to be told lies...well don't tell that to Cesar or Yarik...or, especially, Lorena...these professionals re-wrote the book on hospitality...if Starwood doesn't yet know how lucky they are to have found these ambassadors of excellence...doubtless, they will and very soon! After a most engaging conversation with each of these individuals, my wife and I decided that Westin Puna Cana would be our destination...for our thirty-fifth Anniversary and it was the absolute best travel decision we have ever made!

It is said that when you are told of failings...even if you don't want to believe them...human nature is that you find yourself looking for them, nevertheless...and to the extent that we are seasoned travelers with some relative expectation of levels of amineties and comforts, we, too, found ourselves at least, prepared, for the possibility of validation of the negative reviews we had read.

All who read this, in search of a small slice of Paradise, privacy, peace and quiet and whatever else you are looking for...whether it is for a weekend getaway or as long as you can make your vacation stretch...I will tell you that you will be treated as royality by Carla and William at the fabulous Breakfast Buffet, they never missed a professional or personal beat...and then there was Jesus and Franklin...under the truly capable leadership of Manuel and of course, Argimiro, who would entertain you with their "Speciality" concoctions at poolside or on the Beach!

There are many more standouts that conducted themselves in their routine, highly professional manner, making our stay one for the archieves... I love photography and captured phenominal shots ranging from early morning sunrises, and the beautiful 100 shades of blue beach front water to fabulous evening skys filled with magenta framed sunsets and the perfectly illuminated pool and reception area beyond...I captured over 700 frames of beauty in and around this magical best kept secret...if you are a photographer, then you know that speaks volumes for the beauty that is Westin Puna Cana.

I will return to this slice of heaven at my next opportunity...with the airport only five minutes away...you get off the plane and fifteen minutes later...one of those concoctions is in your hands, in the most beautiful location, attended by the most professional individuals who take great pride in what they do...

Westin, Puna Cana...experience the other (Wonderful) side of the story...!

WF Knight

Room Tip: This Westin Puna Cana Property rooms all had ocean views...but honestly, the property is so beautifu...
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank BillK919
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 6 March 2014

Dear BillK919:

Thank you for giving us such a glowing review of our new The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

We are so happy that we were able to change your perception from the reviews of the beginning days of our hotel. We are glad you enjoyed your stay, the hotel and that you have such positive comments to say about our executives and staff.

Your comments about the great photography you took have actually given me the idea that we should be marketing to people who are serious photographers like yourself, thank you for putting that seed in my head.

Hopefully, we will have you many times back at our hotel and to Puntacana Resort & Club!

Have a great week!

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789 - 795 of 1,013 reviews

Reviewed 2 March 2014

Just returned from a 7 day stay at the Westin. Used points for the full stay.
Airport transfer was seamless.
Upon arrival at the hotel, the lobby is smallish, but very nice. View is amazing, looking out to the pool & the sea, palm trees etc. Check in, as noted, was not speedy...they tried to give me a room right next to the Cigar Bar, which does not work for me since i've got both a 1 & 4 yr old...duh.
They did then give me a room closer to the sea (away from the cigar bar) which was on the ground floor as i requested. I like the extra grass area for my kids to play at. Plus makes it easier to get to/from pool/beach & room if you've forgotten something.
Our room was very nice & clean looking. Heavenly beds you'd expect from Westin were comfy. Very nice shower too. Enough closet/drawer space for my wife, 2 kids & I not to feel cramped.

Some good & some bad here, so I'll give the hotel an "average rating" right now. I know its only been open a few months, so there are some things I know they can improve on.
First the great....rooms beach, weather, politeness of staff, proximity/convenience to airport.

I know Westin resorts in general to be family friendly....this one has a way to go. They have a nice kids club, but they make you drop your kids off & pay the hourly rate. I would much rather see this as a space where parents take their kids & can play with them if they want, free of charge. Not once in my 7 days did i see kids there with the staff. I'm not sure if I chalk this up to a blunder on Westin's part or an attempt to nickel and dime guests.
Also, there is a nice playground area right next to the kids club, but its in the hottest section of the resort w/ no breeze. During the afternoon the swings, slides etc get baked in the sun and were too hot for my kids to enjoy. Westin, put a tarp or some awning up to shade them like you have in your restaurants. Again, never once saw any kids playing on the playground during the afternoon.
They did not have any outdoor kids activities either...or at least none I was made aware of. There were many families here & it would've been a good idea to offer something. Beach/pool toys were lacking.

The hotel employs a towel card system. You're given X amt of cards at check in & you must use them to get towels for pool/beach. when you return the towels, you get your cards back. I'm not sure if this is to let them employ less pool/beach employees or what. If you don't return all the towel cards at check out they will charge you extra. Not sure how much. Feels silly when staying at a nice resort.

Regarding food, it was pretty good. Very American as noted in prior reviews. We mostly did breakfast/lunch at hotel & went off property for dinner. 1 night we did dinner at Westin & had horrible service, cold food etc. They were gracious enough to wipe the cost off our bill.
They have the in-room coffee makers w/ local coffee, which was good....just wish they had a coffee service in the lobby til 10am or so.
You cannot drink the tap water down there, so you must get bottled water. I believe they provide you w 1-2 per day in your room, but at meal time we would order Alaska (local bottled water) as it was much less than the Panna or other options.
I don't believe the hot tub was working the entire time I was there. My 4 year old laughingly called it the "cold tub". I'm sure in time they'll get it working, but come on guys....that's gotta work.
Pools were big & nice. Pools are not heated though. My daughter did cut her toe a bit on it as someone else mentioned prior. The deck is extremely slippery. There should be more grooves as its a completely flat surface. Kids & adults at property were slipping. They had caution signs out, but this is a big design flaw.
There was some construction on the deck above the lobby while we were there. Not loud noise. Kids enjoyed playing with the red "Peligro" tape.
We used the shuttle service to town, La Yola etc. It was on time & efficient. La Yola was great. Bamboo at Tortuga Bay hotel was great too along w/ Mama Luisa in town.

If you're a tennis player, they opened a new facility, Hacienda, midway thru our visit. Its very nice. 6 clay courts. Nice staff, ball boys. Older kids, who are good, to hit with. They're also putting a gym next to the pro shop. Thankfully so, the old facility was run down. Didn't have tennis balls when my friend & I went to play. When we looked puzzled, a ball boy took 3 balls out of the garbage told me it would cost $5. I laughed in his face and then he let me use them for free.

Didn't play golf, but there were a ton of golfers staying there. They said the golf was just amazing. Seemed like great courses.

All in all, the place is sitting on great real estate, just needs to get their ducks in a row on some of the aforementioned issues.
Had a fun week, but I'll probably try a different SPG resort next year.

Room Tip: i took a ground floor room since i have 2 young kids. there is grass right in front of the patio so...
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank DCTraveling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 5 March 2014

Dear DCTravelling:

We are thankful that you wrote such an extensive review on our new The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club! Your feedback has been very beneficial to us and will help future guests coming to the resort.

We apologize for some of the problems you had such as the problem with the room assignment and the dinner that was not to your liking in the hotel.

Your comments about issues like the Kids Club, towel controls; pool floor and others are very helpful. We will look at each one and evaluate.

In regards to the temperature in the Jacuzzi this is being resolved this week.

We are glad that you found so many things in the resort positive, like the transfer system, location, the food, the staff, the location of your second room, the new tennis center, etc.

As you mention, we are a new hotel and are working hard to improve every day and we hope that you will come back in the near future so that you can tell us how you see our improvements.

Again, thank you for your thorough review and have a great week!

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Reviewed 2 March 2014

Perfect place for a quite get a away. The staff was Friendly and it was perfect for families. Food outlet were good and priced right. Able to use the shuttle to venture away to the local mall area. I highly recommend the hike through the ecological preserve. I look forward to going back again.

Stayed: January 2014
Thank Peter Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 5 March 2014

Dear Peter Y:

We are happy that you found our resort to be perfect for families and that you enjoyed Puntacana Resort & Club, where the ecological lagoons you mention are located, and our Puntacana Village.

Thank you for taking the time to review The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club and we hope to see you back soon!

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Reviewed 28 February 2014

We visited Westin in January. The property is amazing. Airy, light, still very new but just perfect. When we arrived our room was not ready yet so we went for lunch to Tiki Bar on the beach. We booked suite and they gave us handicapped accessible. That by itself was fine but the location of the room was not good. We were above the Cigar bar so we could hear and smell everything till late night and at night someone was moving chairs above us or next to us. As the rooms have marble floor it was quite loud. We called the front desk and they said it is housekeeping in the middle of the night (?!). It was happening 3 nights in a row and the story was different every night. Other than that the property is really beautiful and all employees were really nice and pleasant. I would not hesitate a second to go back to this paradise.

Room Tip: Ask for a room or suite not above the Cigar bar
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank LZK007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 3 March 2014

Dear LZK007:

We thank you for reviewing our new The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

We are glad you enjoyed the property.

We apologize about the fact that you were not happy with the location of the room and about the noise problem that you confronted and especially the way the Front Desk handled your complaint. We have already looked into this to make sure to handle better in the future.

We are happy that you enjoyed “our paradise” and that you say that you would come back, hopefully you will come back soon!

Have a great week!

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Reviewed 28 February 2014

From the second we arrived here we were treated like royalty by every member of the staff. It is so unusual to find this level of service anywhere, I cannot imagine a more caring and concerned group of people. The rooms are lovely, the food excellent and the entire place immaculate. As for people complaining about some of the poor english, maybe they need to be reminded that the language here is Spanish and not everyone in the world is fluent in English. Having said that, we never had any issues in communicating our desires to the staff. Can't wait to come back!

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank travellinghopefully
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 3 March 2014

Dear travellinghopefully:

We are happy to hear that you felt treated like royalty at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel and to speak so highly of our staff.

We are glad that you enjoyed the rooms, the food and the general condition of the resort.

Just like you can’t wait to come back…we can’t wait for you to come back!

Have a great week!

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Reviewed 27 February 2014

Great trip.Hotel was lovely with great rooms and the internet was particularly good i found.
Exceptional staff included Gabriella at the front desk Robert and Jorge and Virgil at the restaurant but everyone was great.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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3  Thank panda416
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 1 March 2014

Dear panda416:

We thank you for taking the time to review our hotel and giving us such high marks! Thank you for your comments about our staff, and mentioning some of them in your review, those mentioned will get a copy of your review in their HR file.

We hope to have the chance to have you back soon at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

Have a great weekend!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 February 2014

spacious rooms with great view and a nice building and garden.
however guest room is missing some important details: no bathroom doors which is irritating if you dont travel alone and we only received a toilet brush one hour after we have asked for it.
staff is generally friendly (especially Eduardo from the beach and hostess Ana) however level of english needs to be improved and some more training is needed. all prices are in USD and you still need to add 28% (VAT + service charge) however if you don't tip an additional 15% you are strangely looked at which is a pity.
funny enough that when i ordered a stir fry for dinner from room service, i was called back after 10 minutes and informed that the kitchen ran out of rice (seriously!?). as I was not offered any alternative, i just asked it to be prepared with pasta instead but the quality wasn't very good.
the place still has a huge potential and hopefully management will succeed in training their staff and improving the quality of food.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Wenzwei
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alberto A, Executive Director of Hospitality at The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club, responded to this reviewResponded 1 March 2014

Dear Wenzwei:

Thank you for taking time to review our new Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

We are glad you liked the rooms, their view and the beauty of our nature and gardens.

In regards to the doors in the bathrooms, these have already started to be installed and we will have them in every room in the next few weeks.

Thank you for singling out some of our staff, a copy of your review will go to their HR file. We continue to train our staff with and make it a point to concentrate on them improving their spoken English.

We are very concerned, and we apologize in regards to two comments that you make:

As you state, food and beverage bills have 28% in legal tax and service. Anything else that the guest wishes to leave is what we call voluntary tip but this is completely to the guests discretion to do and in no way should any of our staff react to someone leaving, or not leaving, voluntary tip. We will address this immediately with the staff, as it is very important to us that a guest does not feel pressured in this regard.

The incident with the stir-fry is completely unacceptable and I cannot even respond to that other than to apologize because this should not have happened.

Again, we appreciate that you see that we have potential, we thank you for your valuable feedback, which will help us improve and we hope that in the near future you come back to the Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

Have a great weekend!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club

Address: Playa Blanca at Puntacana Resort & Club, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #39 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Price Range: £111 - £319 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club 4.5*
Number of rooms: 200
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club sits conveniently in the Playa Blanca area of the Puntacana Resort & Club, which is a magnificent 15,000-acre resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We offer a great setting minutes from Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ) and along 3 miles of white sand beach. ... more   less 
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