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“First time visit to Dominican”

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Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro
Ranked #59 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Peterborough, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“First time visit to Dominican”
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Grand Bahia was a great way to see the Dominican. Friendly staff, impeccable grounds, and overall great time to be had. Nothing bad can be said about the location or the resort (other than one bad meal at the Japanese restaurant). Our only issue was with an excursion we took - we signed up for a trip to Soana Island but our tour director was completely disappointing. He was not focused on the group, only napping and being with his girlfriend. Not only did the group on the boat work at getting everyone trashed but then lost 2 people when returning to shore. The two people ended up taking a cab - cannot imagine how much that would have cost. If you decide to take this trip - ask who is the tour director, do not go if it is Alberto. It was the only part of the trip we were disappointed in. We spent a very long ride on a boat with a group of rude drunks, one woman could not evan walk and spent the entire trip back crying and puking.

Room Tip: Resort is huge so decide where you want to be - close to pool, lobby, or beach. Restaurant choices...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank WeLovetoVacationNH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 28 April 2014
Dear client,

We greatly appreciate that you have chosen Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro for your first visit to Dominican Republic. It is a real pleasure to read that you enjoyed a great time.

Thank you for your nice comments and we are sorry that you did not enjoyed the excursion!!

Regards from Punta Cana,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Halifax Region, Canada
1 review
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Stayed at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro for 1 week. Enjoyed my stay very much, food was great, staff was extremely hard working and friendly, resort was kept in excellent condition, the maintence and ground crews never stopped trying to make the place perfect. Will only go back to this resort.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Alex_Hudson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 28 April 2014
Dear Alex,

We are very pleased to read that you enjoyed one week in our Resort thanks to good food and friendly staff. At Bahia Principe our goal is to make your vacation become unforgettable experiences.

Thank you for your comments and looking forward to welcoming you once again!

Best regards,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Calgary
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 April 2014

We spent a week at the Grand Bahia Principe (GBP) in Punta Cana in late April of 2014. To give you an idea of our demographic, we are a Canadian family of four with two children aged 3 and 8. We were part of a destination wedding group that consisted of approximately 80 people (although we only knew about 25 of them well - I mention this only to convey how many others in the group we were actively discussing our 'resort' experience with along the way, so as you read through this review understand that it generally represents the consensus of a couple dozen people). I've also read dozens of reviews of the resort, have noted some of the common issues identified and actively attempted to see whether the GBP has addressed them (when feasible).

The resort, as many have pointed out, is fairly large. It's built more or less like a big rectangle with one of the short ends running along the beach front (which I'll come back to later as this point does prove itself problematic). With a bit of effort and aid of the maps they give you (and those planted around the grounds) you should have the general lay of the resort figured out in your first day. To aid with 'getting around' the resort runs 3 trams (shuttles) that essentially run up and down the length of the resort (1 along each side and 1 down the middle) throughout the day. Unless one has mobility or health related restrictions these trams are a nice to have as opposed to a need to have. You can walk the length of the centre route in 10 minutes – I timed it (and that's with dawdling kids in tow). Speaking of kids and vehicles, that was a bit of an issue for us. Beyond the multiple trams in play there was a host of other service vehicles constantly zipping around the resort (big resort, lots of infrastructure required to keep it going). A least once a day we had to yell, grab or otherwise intercede with our 3 year old to prevent him from being squished by a service vehicle (and while I accept that at this point many may be tempted to insert an 'armchair' thought or two about responsible parenting, our reality was that the combination of young children with their families engaged / distracted by walking around a lush tropical resort on the same, and in many cases the only, pathways provided that were also used by determined staffers zipping around in their trucks, pickups and motorcycles was a recipe for anxiety at best).

Getting back to the whole 'lush tropical' grounds thing. High marks for the GBP on their effort, care and maintenance of the grounds. It was a beautifully maintained resort with lots of palms, native florals and jungle. The amount of time and effort required to keep this large resort looking as good as it does must be staggering. The 'jungle' reference caused some mixed review. Just over half way down the resort (when going from lobby to beach) runs a band of 'natural preserve jungle' (or so it is touted). It certainly appears to be the real deal, looking very much like tropical rain forest, complete with all the sights, sounds (birds, insects), and smells. A number of reviews complained of the smell associated with this area of the resort, and it does. Most people we spoke to, or who we overhead commenting on the same, indicated that 'it must be sewage.' A few of us snooped around a bit and figured it was more of a bog at the base of the foliage that caused the smell, and didn't think it likely that a resort that hoped to remain solvent would actually dump raw sewage. At the end of the day, sewage or otherwise (and my money is on ‘otherwise’), it stank, sometimes ‘like’ sewage. The intensity and nature of the smell would vary throughout the day, and it did seem confined to that immediate area of the resort. I tried to get an idea if any units would've been close enough to be impacted by this smell, but couldn't tell with certainty. I do know that if we had had to deal with that smell from our room, we would have had to move or vacate.

As it happens our room was in a villa very close to the beach (a bonus). The room was satisfactory, but not amazing. Much like most of the resort in general it has front end 'wow' factor, but when you start scrutinizing things some wear and tear begins to show, and while none of it was a 'deal breaker' for us the little things do add up. The mattresses were past their prime (I had to sleep on the couch by night 3), the bathroom mirror had a huge crack running full length down the middle, one of the electrical sockets was busted open and didn't look safe, the toilet foundation mortar was split (the whole toilet would move if you weren't careful) and so on. But, in general the rooms were kept very clean and as were well serviced every day as we could reasonably ask for. When I pointed out the issue with the toilet to a staff member it was addressed later that same day. We personally didn't have any issues with bed bugs or other insects in the room as others have reported experiencing, nor did anyone else in our group. I would also add that despite some reviews alluding to theft of money and valuables from rooms, our group of 80+ reported no such incidents.

On the bug note, Mosquitos, a number of reviews spoke of issues with insect bites, Mosquitos in particular. Whether it was the time of year or measures taken by the resort I can happily say that we didn't have any significant problems. We all packed bug spray, thanks to the reviews, but generally didn't need to use it.

Getting back to the 'servicing' of our rooms for a minute, one thing I wanted to be sure to comment on was the resort staff in general. Just over a year ago we spent a week at the Majestic Elegance just down the beach from the GBP. It was our first time vacationing in the Dominican and one of my most critical points, outside of the quality of the food, had to do with the lack of friendliness, approachability and professionalism of the staff. It was pretty bad. A year later I was happy to see things were decidedly different, and a lot more positive at the GBP. The general attitude and degree of engagement demonstrated by pretty much all of the GBP staff was a vast improvement over our previous experience. Everyone from those greeting you upon check-in right through to the service and maintenance staff, they would all at least give you a smile and a nod (most would attempt to engage you, especially the children, with ‘high fives’ and other friendly antics). I noticed a lot of staff wearing little identical happy face buttons and couldn't help but wonder if some recent HR push aimed at simply smiling at the guests had perhaps been implemented. Whatever the case it was a nice surprise, as frankly, we were expecting a lot more indifference as had been the case previously.

Communication was still a bit of an issue, but following our previous Dominican experience we learned to let the little things go, as none were generally worth the hassle of tracking down a staffer that spoke enough English to remedy things (because the time it took would usually prove more frustrating than whatever the issue was to begin with - someone moved your deck chair, eggs not cooked exactly how you want them, I'm not saying things like this shouldn't be addressed, only that they can fast become a hill to die on if you have to work through 6-7 people just trying get someone to understand your issue). In fairness, this is an international destination and I must of heard well over 7-8 different languages being spoken around the resort. The GBP can't readily be expected to have all staff speaking all the required languages all the time. I saw enough multi-language capable staff about to satisfy myself that if serious issues arose I would be able to get the assistance I needed.

Speaking of deck chairs, just about every review I've read touches on points related to both. Deck chairs, or more specifically, deck chair availability around the pool and at the beach. It's been said in just about every review that chair availability is horrendous, and if you haven't got a chair saved by 6-7am you won't get one. I wouldn't bet a paycheck on things being that dire 100% of the time, but as a general rule it's probably not too far off, particularly if you want a spot with some shade. I get the beach issue. Realistically the GBP has got about as many chairs on the beach as they can fit. The problem is ratio. Remember how I described the resort as a big rectangle? Well, the problem that I alluded to is that the rectangle runs deep (as in back from the beach) as opposed to long (as in along the beach). So you've got all these people from a large resort vying for beach space on a plot of sand generally not much bigger than that of other resorts with a significantly smaller number of guests. For instance, Majestic Elegance just down the beach, at about 1/2 the size of GBP, it may of had surly staff, but we never had a problem finding space on the beach. I don't think there is much the resort can do about this issue. It's basically a logistical design flaw. We were fortunate to have a member of our group that would make the early morning trip to the beach every morning to grab a few chairs for the team (thanks Tim). On a related note, some reviewers have theorized that resort staffers were accepting gratuity to reserve chairs for guests before dawn. We collectively never saw anything to suggest that this was going on, if it was, it would've had to be pretty low key and rare.

As for the pools around the resort, they could use some more chairs, but some of the guests could show a little more courtesy too. Two things seemed to consistently jam up deck chair availability around the pools, reserved chairs with no one using them for hours on end if not the whole day (a point commonly identified in other reviews) and full families that insisted on chairs for 'everybody' in their group, including the young kids who, for the most part, had no interest or need of one as they spent the day in the pool. Realistically there are too many pools and chairs around the resort for the staff to be policing this sort of thing (despite signs indicating a ‘no reserve ‘ policy) and it namely comes down to some people, out of ignorance or arrogance, being less than considerate of their fellow travelers.

The reality is that you may have to be patient and / or hunt around for a chair or two, but eventually you will get something. There was never a day where we spent more than 10-15 minutes on the prowl. Once you are set up both the pools and beach are pretty good. The pools are well maintained and the beach is beautiful with waves and depth that is family friendly. The 'animation staff' runs around facilitating games and activities for those interested. There is always a game of beach volley ball going and the GBP offers some complimentary water activities. For those willing to pay there are sales reps for para-sailing, extreme tubing, dolphin tours, and other local adventure / exploration tours set up and circulating the pool and beach area (along with various venders selling cigars and other trinkety stuff). None of these folks were particularly pushy or annoying. They'd come by from time to time, offer their product and then be on their way.

The biggest sales hawks on the resort had to be the front men (and women) trying to convince you to attend a special 'tour / presentation' and for which you will be showered with gifts in exchange for a mere hour of your time (it's never just an hour, more like two). In speaking to a few from our group that got roped in the ol' tropical destination time-share pitch, it sounds like it hasn't changed much since I first got suckered into going to one years ago in Mexico. High pressure sales tactics designed to make you feel sheepish about not agreeing to part with thousands of dollars on the spot. The manner in which the 'sales' team conducts themselves comes off as more of a well-designed con. It's not quite criminal, but if these tactics were used in Canada or the States I suspect it wouldn't take too much effort to have the contract nullified in civil court. If you stand up to their hustle long enough they generally become ignorant, suggesting that you're just not bright enough to take advantage of a good thing. Unless you actually want to buy into a local timeshare, I'd steer clear of this as none of those from our group that attended enjoyed the experience. The hand full of touristy gifts and perks offered isn't worth your time and hassle, but again, this advice is non-withstanding those that are in the market for a local time-share. This commentary isn’t to suggest that the product itself is suspect (frankly I don’t know enough about it), it’s only to point out that their pitch methods are aggressive to the point of being reprehensible.

Back to the pools and beach, the resort does need to address is how it manages its towel supply. We learned early to never allow our pool towels to be traded in for cards, as re-acquiring towels the next day can take hours. You are better off taking your damp, sandy towels back to your room at the end of the day, hang dry them and then only take them in the following day when they can be exchanged for fresh ones. This is a supply management thing and they need to get better at being consistent with it.

A majority of the critiques addressing the overall quality of the food are spot on. Much like our previous Dominican experience the food was generally eatable, with some variety, but ultimately pretty 'meh.' If you are a foodie expecting 4-5 star gourmet fare you will not get it here. With our sizable group every a la carte, snack bar, buffet and room service option was hit up multiple times and the consensus was pretty much, 'yeah, it's food.' Every day you could count on the same staples of tropical fruit (usually pretty good), salad bar veggies, cheeses, cold cuts, breads, desserts and then a dozen or so variations on hot dishes / main dishes. Lots of salt, lots of over cooked food and whether it was the main buffet or one of the a la carte’s, at no time did anyone from our large group report back on having experienced some sort of amazing meal or dish that you just had to go try. Despite this, no one got sick and no one went hungry. Ultimately everyone has a unique palate and a personal set of tastes, so I won't get into what the best of the average fair was in my book, as exploring the variety (such as it is) is one of the few upsides to the GBP's culinary experience (and in doing so you'll hopefully come across a few dishes that appeal to you). Although I will say this, go with the hot stations when you can, as their freshly prepared stuff generally trumped the warming pans. As for the warming pans themselves, try to catch stuff at turnover, especially anything deep fried (which they do a lot of), given the prep methods and humidity this stuff becomes limp and less desirable pretty quick.

Speaking of 'no one going hungry,' a number of reviews commented on the cattle call nature of the buffet and snack bar lines, and of how a number of people jostle, shove and generally act as if the resort is about to run out of food (which we never saw happen). Yep, there was often a lot of chaos at the buffet lines, if you could even call them lines, but as with the pool chairs this issue has less to do with the resort and more to do with the guests themselves. I saw this little phenom play out multiple times every day and it generally looked something like this: structured line would begin to form, within seconds an individual would get stalled as they stood and stared at an entree (seemingly trying to figure out, do I want this? How much do I want? Should I use these tongs? How do I use these tongs? Hmmm, do I really want this? Hang on a sec, what is this!?), the end result was a frustrated line that would eventually begin to bypass the jam-tart in order to keep things moving, except once the bypass takes place, someone else grounds out 2-3 dishes down and the process repeats until basically 'the line' degrades down to a bunch of people standing around starring at food, with others darting in amongst them trying to get at stuff that's accessible.

One thing the GBP could do better here is to train, encourage and reasonably monitor (or at least spot check) that staff manning hot stations (and bars for that matter) are at least making an effort to serve customers in the order in which they arrived. You could often stand forgotten if the right set of circumstances befell you. As many have also identified in their reviews those, circumstances, often involved being bumped by guests speaking fluent Spanish, to whom some cooks or bar tenders would often immediately defer, despite it being painfully obvious that they had just 'walked up' while others had clearly been waiting. When they did get back to you they were still pleasant and professional and seemed genuinely oblivious (or perhaps simply unfazed) to the blatant bias they had just demonstrated right in front of you. Times like this made the choice not to tip an easy one. Ironically, not once did I see anyone to whom the servers gave preferential service to actually tip either, meaning that without knowing it they were screwing themselves out of some gratuities. I don't want to harp on this point too much, as it was only as much of a ‘big deal’ as we chose to make it, and it wasn't as though it happen 'all' the time. Besides, I was never in that much of a hurry to get my next drink and it saved me some tip money, conscious free.

As for the quantity of the drinks, much like the food, the overall experience is OK. The stock beer offered is a light pilsner, and the usual line up of sugary drinks (with or without alcohol) as well as highballs and liquors are readily available. Any premium stuff is selectively available at certain bars and will cost you extra. The cups used around the pools are small. A lot of people would bring their own larger and insulated mugs which seemed a good idea.

The resort does offer a great kid's water park play area. It's ideal for tots through to about 10. Lots of mini water-slides and kid friendly structures to play around, all with water shooting, spraying and cascading all over the place. All the children in our group really enjoyed it. We saw what appeared to be other kid's club orientated activities going on at times throughout the resort too. They appeared well coordinated and the kids were having fun. The GBP certainly seemed a family friendly resort from our perspective, with the young family demographic well represented. The only thing at odds with all the kids would be the smoking. North American sensibilities on urban smoking (for lack of a better way to put it) are not necessarily in step with our European, Slavic and Caribbean friends. They clearly haven’t endured that last 20 years, or so, of social engineering on the dangers of second hand smoke, kids, etc, blah, blah, blah. Anyways, for a number of these other travelers, many with children of their own, smoking in dining areas and around kids simply was not an issue. They weren’t doing it with malice or to be jerks (many would return my naive and incredulous stares with friendly smiles and nods), it was just one of those things they did. Fortunately most areas are open-air and there was usually a breeze in play so this would generally only prove to be a minor nuisance at worst.

Back to the kid's water-park for a second, as you walk, or tram it from the lobby to get there (for those with kids), you'll see all the little shops and other activities GBP offers, including mini golf, go-carts, tennis courts, adventure park and others. They have a lot going on here, more than I can intelligently comment on, with young kids we were only able to do so much, but it certainly looked like it would've be fun to check out and try the other amenities offered, like the shows, disco, casino, etc.

I've given up on accepting or even acknowledging whatever 'star' rating that resorts such as the Grand Bahia Principe subscribes to. None too surprising they all tout themselves as 5 star experiences. It's all relative to what you are comparing it to. First big trip? Then this may well be a 5 star experience. Been around? You're going to compare and things will either be better or worse. For us the high points were: beautiful location, great beach, well maintained pools, kid friendly (if that's your 'bag'), well maintained grounds (an understatement), a variety of activities and 'at-cost' extras available, and generally friendly staff. The lows: average (at best) food, average rooms (beds in particular) and below average availability of decent beach / pool space. I should add that our wedding group was part of the resort's 'golden club,' which, as my understanding is, came with certain modest upgrades (ie. a lot of people have commented on having to pay for a room safe, ours was included, not sure if things have changed, or if that was one of the upgrades). Ultimately, for what we paid we considered the Grand Bahia Principe to be a decent experience, and should you find yourself there hopefully you will too.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jwalker13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 30 April 2014
Dear Jwalker,

Thank you for taking the time to post this detailed review of your stay at our hotel. We greatly appreciate your feedback, which give us an opportunity to assess and evaluate our performance.

We really hope you consider coming back to this Caribbean paradise in the Dominican Republic and enjoy all facilities and services.

Always at your disposal,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 April 2014

Stayed at the Bahia Principe Bavaro from April 4-11, weather was great as was the cervesa. Nothing to complain about particularly except for the staff was not what I have come to expect from other Dominican vacations I have had in the past. Not that the service wasn't satisfactory, it certainly was, only that they weren't as "exceptional" as I have had on other stays. Our maid continually forgot to leave face cloths and the rooms did not seem to be cleaned at the same time each day, which does not sound like a huge deal but when you are trying to develop a holiday routine it does create a small problem. Also, the beds were not the most comfortable I have stayed in, my back was tight a few mornings. Very firm and unforgiving. The only person I would definitely give a thumbs down for service and overall personality was Lydia at the pool bar. I realize everyone can have a bad day and being bright and cheery isn't possible all the time, but being miserable and grumpy 7 days in a row is not what I appreciate as a guest. On the flip side, a young lady (Emiluze) who served in the lobby bar was exceptional, very friendly, helpful and cheery with a great sense of humor. This one person could make up for two persons negatives. The food was very good, much better than what I remembered Dominican restaurants and buffets to be. We took in two a la cartes, the Garden Grill and the Maiko. Garden Grill is a steak restaurant catering to a very western/cowboy feel, elegant decor but great classic country music and food was superb. Steaks were done better than I have had in the Dominican on any other trip. Maiko is a Japanese restaurant, chefs prepare food in front of 12 people. Chefs are entertaining and food is great. The common restaurant/buffet was satisfactory, always something that could be found to satisfy your appetite. The grounds are HUGE, just as they are at the Grand Bahia in the Mayan. There are shuttles to take you around however speed bumps keep you from getting anywhere much faster than walking. Beach bar/restaurant serves an excellent lunch so you don't have to go back to the lobby to eat.
Apart from that the only other thing I can say about the resort is that I found the beaches to be among the most beautiful I have ever seen, truly magnificent.

Away from the resort we went out for a meal to Captain Cooks seafood restaurant. It is in town and located right on the beach with beautiful open air views. You walk in and find a large selection of freshly (that day) caught seafood for you to pick from. You are able to select what you want and how much you want and pay by the weight. Meal was great and worth the trip.

The hotel is located only a short drive from the airport, less than half an hour including stops, so there was no need to obtain private transportation to shorten a long journey.

All in all it was a great trip and were it not for all the other hot holiday places to try I would definitely return here soon.

Room Tip: Try to stay centrally located, anything on either end and you have a looong walk to the other.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank happyfisherman_42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 26 April 2014
Dear client,

Thank you for acknowledging Emiluze, who provide you an exceptional service. She will appreciate your nice comments.

We would like to have the opportunity to welcome you once again at our Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro and continue providing you amazing vacations.

Kind regards,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Miami, Florida
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 April 2014

My wife and I spent 4 days in Bahia Principe Punta Cana, good room, friendly staff, my recommendation is to make the restaurant reservations as soon as you arrive.
Huge hotel with a lot of stuff to do. Food was really good, specially on the "A La Carte" Restaurants. It is crowded on the pool/beach areas but is not hard to find a chair.
The room has a minibar and a jacuzzi, the bed was OK, the mattress a little rough, AC works perfect. TV 100+ channels, a lot of US and LATAM Channels, ABC, ESPN, FOX, Movies, Kids channels etc.

Room Tip: Rooms near the lobby are better because is where you will go more frequently (daily buffet and night...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Chrystian V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 26 April 2014
Dear Chrystian,

We are very pleased to read that your stay was excellent thanks to our delicious food at the a la carte restaurants and the facilities we provide to our clients.

We look forward to having you again at Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, your best hotel in Punta Cana.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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Hamilton, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2014 via mobile

Stayed at the Grand Bahia Bavaro, building 35 the week of March 30-April 6th with my hubby. Everything was truly perfect. The staff were so friendly and went out of their way to greet you and make sure you had whatever you needed. Check in went smoothly and front desk was always a pleasure to deal with if we had any questions.
Made use of the gym, staff there was very nice. The grounds were immaculate and stunning. Cleanliness was clearly top priority.
Enjoyed the buffet - shout out to omelette chef Danilo and the dining staff always attentive.
Shows - highlight of the days - so much fun!
The beach - world class, beautiful and always staff there to clean up any discarded cups and sweep the sand of the loungers. The bartenders especially the ones on the beach were awesome and always quick.
Overall, so very impressed, I can truly say I plan of returning, only next time with all of our family as it truly is amazing!
Thank you for making our vacation such a dream vacation!

Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank hpaterso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 25 April 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for posting a review of your awesome experience in Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro. We are proud to hear that you consider this is an amazing Resort and everything was perfect for you.

For all of us it will be an honor to welcome you once again and be able to thank you personally for your positive comments.

Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, your best hotel in Punta Cana.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
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new york
Level Contributor
34 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2014

I really can't complain too much, but on the other hand, i really can't rave about it either. First this is a huge complex of actually 8 hotels. Some higher end than others and some areas are sort of restricted. I was in one of the lower end of the 8 so while the beach is common and some of the pools could be, there is definately difference experiences all at the same location.

Overall, a very big property. Golf cars drive folks around. The buffet was ok, not impressive but fine. It was hard to get reservations at the specialty restaurants and the two i was at weren't that impressive either. The japanese was essentially Chinese food and when i asked for extra teriyaki sauce they told me there's wasn't any such thing. I settled for soy. Also, when service is over, it's over. Breakfast ends at 10:30a, not 10:31. I got the last of the free drinks at 11:30p. I mean they hit the mark and STOP. Pay attention at the $5 blackjack table, the dealers can't always add. Some nice shops on property. Also the guest services folks were pretty useless and not very helpful and seemed to only be able to make reservations, which again, wasn't easy. The scuba test out dive was in the pool. the snorkling consisted of finding the dive shack and getting a mask. There is nothing really to see at their beach. Every morning I was there by 9a every lounge chair by the pool near me was already claimed. Same with the good chairs at the beach.

Ok some good stuff. There were bars everywhere and no waiting for drinks. They would make you anything and if you asked for more rum they put a floater in. Funny I ordered a drink of their drinks menu and had three, the next night i ordered the same drink and it came three different ways. Everyday at the buffet there was something good. They did a make your own pasta, they had a carving station, they tried with the desserts and you had time. Breakfast you could always get eggs your way and a big buffet. Down by the beach you coudl pretty much get the same stuff most of the day. So no shortage of food or drink, just don't expect high quality in either.

Nice beach, the room was fine. Nothing special but hey, I don't wanna spend much time there anyway. I called one night for a plunger, it never arrived. However three nights later when I called for a leaky A/C unit the guy was there in minutes.

I did one excursion through my Tour Operator, Island Sun that was a snorkle, boat trip, swim wiht the sharks thing. It was a bit "touristy" but fine and they didn't spare on the rum and cokes and the boat staff was fun. The snorkling, eh, fair. But I went diving off property later so I wasn't expecting much.

The staff was friendly for the most part although not much English from the staff.

Overall, I got a great price and for 5 days on the beach, it was fine. Like I said, I can't rave about the place, but it worked. Next time, I am upgrading the property and my vacation.

Room Tip: I was in building 71. sort of off to the side but in the Middle. it's a big place and you probab...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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1 Thank captaindavebklyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
socialmedia b, Customer service at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro, responded to this review, 26 April 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for sharing your comments. Our main goal strives in having a great ambiance to satisfy our guests' requirements; we regret very much that we were not able to complete your entire satisfaction and expectations this time.

We sincerely hope you will consider giving us a chance to welcome you once again at our Resort.

Kindest 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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Additional Information about Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro

Property: Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro
Address: Arena Gorda - Macao Seccion Baigua | Arena Gorda - Macao, Seccion Baigua, 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 Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#34 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#36 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#38 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#52 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#52 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#53 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#55 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro 4*
Number of rooms: 744
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 2 lake-style pools Large sun terrace New relaxation zone with Bali beds, sun umbrellas and loungers Pool and beach towels BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, 3 tennis courts (floodlit for an additional charge), multi-sports court Water activity centre WiFi access in the lobby (1h per day free of charge) and in rooms (additional charge) Entertainment theatre Wedding gazebo 1 buffet restaurant and 17 speciality restaurants Japanese restaurant 10 bars 3 Snack Bars Cocktail Lounge Punta Blanca Golf Club: 18 hole Golf 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 816 rooms including two types: Superior Junior Suite and Club Hacienda Junior Suite Room facilities: King size bed or two full size beds Fully-equipped bathroom with hydromassage bath tub, hair dryer and magnifying mirror Sitting area with sofa Air conditioning Ceiling fan Telephone Alarm clock Satellite TV Minibar Coffee-making facilities Safe (additional charge) Ironing set Wifi (additional charge) Club Hacienda Junior Suite (See page 18 Club Golden, Club Hacienda) Children Bahia Scouts The hotel is perfect for families, offering a range of facilities tailored especially for children, including the following: Mini Club for children aged 4 to 12 Evening Mini Disco Babysitting service (additional charge) Bahia Scouts Water Park Fun Area and Adventure Park (additional charge) Teens' Club (11-16 years) Other services 24 hour medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Bus stop opposite the hotel Meeting and convention room Personalised menus (for celiacs, diabetics, etc.) Available on request and subject to circumstances Specialised service for organising weddings, incentive trips, events and anniversaries ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Punta Cana
Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana
Bahia Principe Dominican Republic
Gran Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
Punta Cana Bahia Principe
Gran Bahia Principe Bavaro Punta Cana
Principe Punta Cana
Bahia Punta Cana
Bahia Resort Principe
Gran Bahia Principe Dominican Republic

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