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The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club
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Reviews (1,135)
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Reviewed 2 March 2014

We have just arrived back from a 5 day stay at the Westin Puntacana. We worked with the group department to arrange for a golf package and we were originally supposed to stay at Tortuga Bay (Oscar de la Renta's boutique hotel that is a leading hotel of the world). There was a mix up in our reservation and we had no choice but the Westin. Needless to say, I had very low expectations going into the trip with the original confusion in hotel. After my 5 day stay, I can't wait to go back.

I use TA for reviewing all properties before I stay and I have to admit, I was a little nervous with the bad reviews. #1- if you are an experienced traveler going to the Caribbean, you know that service is going to be slow. (Bring a book and take a deep breath.) #2- the staff is excellent. I am always shocked, arriving to Spanish speaking tourist friendly destinations, with the amount of English widely spoken. We have far less English spoken in Miami, Florida. #3- I had a room on the 4th floor and my wifi was variable, but mostly worked whenever I needed it.

Upon arrival to PUJ, they greeted us with the VIP airport service. This is a must! They whiz you through security and customs to be on your way quickly. We were able to play 9 holes after arriving with enough daylight to spare. Check-in, was a little slow, but again you're in the Caribbean what do you expect.

The rooms were amazing. There is a defined entry way where it is convenient to keep golf club travel bags. To the left of the entry is a closet that I would like to re-create in my home. I believe it was built to make travelers feel so comfortable they wouldn't want to go home. They even thought of the small details- such as a full length mirror in the closet and the safe, actually built into the wooden closet. (This always makes me feel comfortable with leaving my valuables locked up.) On the other side of the entry way is the large bedroom and bathroom. My two favorite parts of a Westin- the heavenly bed and the blackout shades!

As for the food, we had a Golf Package that included unlimited food and drink anywhere on property and boy was it worth it. Our group had a wonderful time. They ate and drank until they were blue in the face. The Brassa Grill had a fanstastic dinner arranged for our reservation. They gave us the option of family style, which would give us multiple appetizers and main entrees to try. It turned out to be fantastic. Playa Blanca was a nice dinner option, but opt to walk rather than take the shuttle- it is only 5 minutes, but bring your phone flashlight to watch for the ropes on the beach. Our favorite lunch was at the La Cana clubhouse, sitting next to the pool and overlooking the beach. My favorite was the shrimp egg rolls. The last night of our trip we went to Bamboo, the restaurant at Tortuga Bay. It is a romantic, gourmet option.

The golf is spectacular in Punta Cana. Corales might be in the best shape of any course I've ever played. (Disclosure- I'm a golf professional) And Punta Espada is breath taking. My only issue with golf in Punta Cana- I'm too intrigued to take pictures that I sometimes forget to take time with my golf shots.

If you've never been to the Dominican Republic for golf- I would highly suggest staying at the Westin or Tortuga Bay and playing Corales, La Cana and going to Cap Cana for Punta Espada. What a trip! Can't wait to return! Thank you exceeding all of our expectations.

Room Tip: 4th floor rooms had good wifi.
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled on business
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3  Thank Ohiggeau
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 Ohiggeau:

We are so happy that your golf group had a great time at our new The Westin Puntacana Resort & Club!

We are sorry about the initial confusion with your reservation, that your Wi-Fi was not perfect 100% of the time and that you found the check-in slow.

I am investigating in regards to your reservation, as I was not aware that there had been a mix up.

We have been working on improving the Wi-Fi and we had not received any negative comments lately, but obviously you had a problem, and it was recent so we have to take a look at it.

In regards to the check-in, you are right, we still have to do a better job of checking in groups that come together, I assure you that we will continue to improve in this area.

We are glad that you had such a positive experience in Puntacana Resort & Club and we thank you for giving us such a high review and for giving us such positive feedback in areas like your room, Food and Beverage and golf.

We have gotten very good reviews overall on our room product and we have been working hard on our Food and Beverage operation so we are very happy that you had a very good experience in this regard.

Most important for us are your comments about our golf courses and golf operation. Golf is obviously a very important part Puntacana Resort & Club and we are counting with many groups such as yours to come enjoy this experience and we thank you because your review will be very helpful to the decision makers coordinating these groups.

Again, thank you for your time, we hope to have you back soon and have a great week!

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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 beautiful, we really didn't stay in the room. The breezes and the natural beauty (and the Gazebo on the Dock) offered the most peaceful and private opportunities to just close you eyes, listen to the waves breaking on the barrier reef...and let relaxation flow over you...the sunsets were simply breathtaking to view above the palm tree lined white sand beaches.
  • 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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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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 this gave them some additional runway.
  • 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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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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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