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“Holiday of a Lifetime!”

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Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino
Ranked #25 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Holiday of a Lifetime!”
Reviewed 13 May 2014

For those who don't wish to read all of my babble, in short this resort is one not to be missed. Our criticisms for the whole experience are so minimal their almost not worth mentioning. I was so nervous after reading some of the negative reviews, but I don't have a clue where they've come from! Don't listen to them! Royalton is the place to be!

I travelled alongside my friend, we both came from England and booked through Thomson. It was our first time in the Dominican, and my first time going all inclusive. Our flights ran smooth without concerns, the dream liner on the return was lovely (although I'm not sure what all the fuss is about). There's plenty of leg room in standard seats, however we were little miffed as we'd paid for extra leg room but the seats seemed the same as all the rest.

On arrival there was reps there to meet us, the transfer was quick and simple with only about a 20 minute drive from the airport. We were checked in on the coach before even arriving, and were greeted with a cocktail at reception. We found at times the swipe cards to get into our room were a bit temperamental, we were advised the magnetic field from mobiles can affect them.

Our room was absolutely beautiful. The beds were amazing! The shower is so powerful which is something very important to me. The door did leak slightly but nothing a towel on the floor couldn't fix. The maids cleaned the room from top to bottom every day (beware the floors are very slippy after mopping), and they seem to work long hours so can work around when you're free. We made good use of the 'do not disturb/please service' sign on the door and always had our needs met. We also had gorgeous robes and slippers in the room. The maids come again in the evening to turn the beds down and refresh towels. The air con is top notch, along with a ceiling fan as well. Our view was facing the main area where the restaurants and bars were which we were happy with as we'd made no special requests. I'd say everything is spaced out pretty evenly so wherever your room is you're never too far from all the facilities. By the looks of the layout there aren't too many pool/sea views so don't pin your hopes on that and I did hear that some who had paid for sea views could only see the sea if they stretched round the corner of their balcony.

There's two pools and one tiny shallow pool for kids. The pools are medium size, not enough to swim full lengths but they were never overly busy. We did find after the holiday went on that the sunbeds got very busy, and by 6am it was hard to find a spare bed, especially with shade! I've read some people saying you cannot reserve until 8am which unfortunately is no longer the case. We found some beds had towels on since 6am and weren't even being used until the afternoon. I'd say this is definitely something that needs work, as there's easily space for more. The beach however was a lot less busy....with beautiful clear white sands. The sea was a bit cold and choppy due to it being the Atlantic but all the same amazing!

The restaurants are brilliant. I highly recommend making sure you try all of them. The only restaurant we had to wait for a table was hunters, the steak restaurant. Even then our longest wait was 40 minutes, and when you're on holiday I don't see the problem with that. It's not as though you're in a rush is it?! They hand you a bleeper and you're free to go and get a drink or whatever whilst you wait. Our favourites were Hunters and Zen, and our least I'd say was under the sea and the buffet, but I'd still recommend trying them both. With Zen there is a sushi bar that you can go to whenever, it's only the live teppanyaki stations that you need to book the morning before - and if you're extra nice to the staff around the sushi bar they'll sneak you over some teppanyaki anyway. The room service is also top notch, and 24 hour which we made full use of! There's no way you can ever go hungry, there's food to meet the fussiest eaters, and those with extremely strong will power would find all types of healthy foods too. We however gained over a stone between us!

The evening entertainment was wonderful, and again I'd recommend trying to catch every performance. The only criticisms would be that most of the shows only last an hour, which isn't much in the type of resort where you can't really wander the local area. The dreams beach party is not one to be missed, a big favourite along with Michael Jackson of course. Make sure you go to all the bars and try some cocktails, they're out of this world! Although we did have to keep asking for them to be weaker as Dominican measures are very different to English!

The casino is a reasonable size but is hit and miss with busyness and atmosphere. The is also a minimum of a $20 purchase of chips at the tables. The nightclub we found to be a bit of a let down. The music seems to be the same playlist every night, the atmosphere is a bit rubbish and it was mostly almost empty. I think it's difficult to get the mix right due to there being so many nationalities wanting their own music.

I would encourage you to do shopping for gifts at the mall. There are free buses that run twice a day with a ticket from reception, it takes around 40 minutes to get there, you have two hours there and then a longer journey back due to drop offs. The mall is a lot lot cheaper than the local market, and the market stalls they have within the resort one evening. Don't be fooled....they pester and pester and make you feel you are getting a good deal when it is not the case!

Listening to reps you will be told how little money everyone earns and how grateful they are, then you'll see them with their flash watches and iPhones. As you talk to people you'll learn they don't all earn the pittance they make out, I think the lowest paid are the maids. On reading reviews we felt great pressure to tip everywhere, when in reality we found we just tipped people who we felt gave us good service. Often in the restaurants you'll be served by two or three different people who you'll only have one interaction with so we didn't feel it appropriate. We tipped the maids most days but found it made no difference to the service we received, they did the same good job every day. My rule would be don't feel pressured, if you received good service then tip, if not, don't!

Mostly everywhere accepts Pesos and American dollars, which we used both. We were told that reception exchange pounds for dollars but this is not the case, the reps will exchange it but the rate isn't brilliant, so make sure you bring enough.

Excursion wise we chose the outback safari and swimming with dolphins. Both of which were amazing and worth every penny. The outback safari at $95 for a full day of experiencing local culture and sights. We did that on our last day and it was a beautiful way to round of our trip. The dolphins we went VIP for $190 each, I think that's meant to be 2 dolphins to 6 people, however there was only me and my friend who had it so we had extra special treatment! The rep will tell you you can get one photo for $10, we did not see this option anywhere. I think it's something like $90 for a CD of photos, and $110 for photos and a DVD...but they're well worth it! Others told us that the excursion to an island (I cant remember the name) was also a brilliant trip. There's also water sport type things available on the beach which I was informed were good fun!

We went over to memories for a day for the slides. We stayed about two hours. The resort was empty as I think most people go over to Royalton. The slides were average, good fun but nothing special. Worth taking a look but don't get overly excited - however brilliant if you're taking kids. This resort is lot more family orientated with a kids and teens group.

I didn't try the spa or the gym but were told both were good. The spa staff work on commission and apparently it is possible to haggle with them to get a better price. The treatments aren't cheap but you get full access to all the facilities which are apparently top notch.

We were encouraged to give shout outs to the staff who really stood out for us. Everyone was very helpful anyway but in particular at Zen; Manuel, George and Francis really made our experience brilliant. The nightclub barman Hector was very friendly and good fun. And Alex the dancer made the beach party a brilliant night! Smiley face (god knows where she's meant to work because she's everywhere) was always good fun, an amazing dancer and my friend really enjoyed the aqua aerobics with her.

Unfortunately we'd have liked to say the Thomson rep Domingo was helpful. He was useless - which was our only real sticking point. On first impressions he's very friendly and approachable, however once he's had your money he's no use for anything. He had to chase him up many a time for things and I know other holiday makers had a lot bigger problems that he just did not sort. He likes to send you away and ask you to return the next day, my advice would be to stay and ask for him to sort whatever it is there and then, otherwise you'll be forever chasing after him.

In regards to paying extras for things I just don't think it's needed. The diamond club have a separate section of the beach, a separate beach bar, a separate bar by reception and access to the adult pool. But their facilities didn't seem much different to ours, considering how much extra they'd paid. I think opinions were mixed, some I spoke to appreciated it, however most felt it just wasn't worth it. The staff by the regular pools take your orders and bring drinks anyway, so I'm not sure the butler is that special. The service is brilliant everywhere so I see no need to pay extra. Again the swim out rooms, maybe helpful for a family with children wanted to play of an evening or whatever. But they don't actually lead to a main pool, they are separate and seem a bit pointless to me. A nice concept but a bit of a waste of money. The adult pool was just another medium sized pool. It did seem a lot less busy and have its own bar, I don't know the price for that but if you want more of a chilled holiday it might be worth it if it's not too expensive.

Overall a brilliant holiday not to be missed. Worth every penny and more. The scenery is absolutely out of this world, the beach is the best I've seen. The service is outstanding. The food is top notch.

Little Tips:
-The sports bar do brill snacks during the day, we missed this until right near the end but definitely worth trying.
-There's a lot of branded and unbranded alcohol, if you don't ask you will get the house drinks, just ask for what you want.
- Avoid the concierge in your apartment block! They are extremely friendly and will try and convince you to come to some meeting offering free massages and all sorts, it's just a time share sale. It lasts hours and apparently they can be very pushy and funny about it.
- If you are a coffee fan, bring your own, Dominican coffee isn't all it's made out to be, however the coffee shop does better drinks than the restaurants/room service.
- Room service are very flexible. The menu is a bit confusing with the times for meals. Just ask for what you want within reason and they are more than happy to supply.
- If you have anything to celebrate whilst there let them know. There's all sorts of extras they do for stuff like that.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank iamkingy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 14 May 2014
Dear iamkingy,

First of all, thank you so much for selecting Royalton Punta Cana for your holidays, it is a big pleasure to read this wonderful opinion about our hotel. And of course, thanks for sharing it on Trip Advisor.

We are very proud to know that your last experience at Royalton Punta Cana exceeded your expectations. As you know our principal goal is to give you our best service, make your vacation exclusive and unforgettable. Your comments will help us with our continuing effort to assure our Guest Satisfaction.

We hope you visit us again next year. We will be very pleased to welcome you.
Kind Regards,

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
Report response as inappropriate
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Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 May 2014 via mobile

Food excellent staff excellent hospitality exellent no complaints at all take your family here service exellent you just cannot get better than this its amazing your treated like royalty the beach is amazing the pools and restuarants are out of this world you won't be disappointed were coming back love it its got no faults and you won't find any we're happy

  • Stayed May 2014
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Helpful?
1 Thank Stevie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 May 2014
Dear Stevie J.,

We would like to thank you personally for sharing on TripAdvisor your kind feedback about your stay at Royalton Punta Cana.

We appreciate to hear that we have been able to meet your expectations and that our location and facilities have contributed to a wonderful holiday in our hotel. It is a great pleasure to read how much you have enjoyed our resort.

We hope to have you back soon enjoying Royalton Punta Cana.
Kind Regards,

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
Report response as inappropriate
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 May 2014

My husband and I stayed at the Royalton Punta Cana for 2 weeks in April this year. The recently furbished hotel was excellent - modern, spacious and spotless rooms. The food was of very high standard with vast choices of cuisine in the main dining room as well as a choice of top quality restaurants including Italian, mediterranean, Teppanyaki and the steak house. Royalton's sister hotel Memories is a 2 minute open train ride between the hotels where you can use the water park which is terrific fun. The beach isabsolutely beautiful with soft white sand and palm trees. The staff are very friendly and eager to please. Luis was always very helpful, spoke excellent English and always had a lovely smile. An extra special thanks to Yahiara who was so friendly and made our stay extra special

Room Tip: Higher floors more private, sea view fantastic. Avoid rooms facing Memories hotel.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Jo W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 14 May 2014
Dear Jo W.,

We would like to thank you personally for sharing on TripAdvisor your kind feedback about your stay at Royalton Punta Cana.

We appreciate to hear that we have been able to meet your expectations and that our location and facilities have contributed to a wonderful holiday in our hotel. It is a great pleasure to read how much you have enjoyed our resort.

We hope to have you back soon enjoying Royalton Punta Cana.
Kind Regards,

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durham
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2014

1st time to the Dominican and this resort was highly recommended and it did not disappoint. Went April 23-30 with another couple from Toronto. Regardless of where you go you can find fault with any resort so if you are looking for perfection you will never find it.

Rooms were splendid for the amount of time we actually stayed in them, the beds were awesome. We were in block 1 which was furthest from the beach but really, even hammered taking 2 steps forward 1 step back only takes a few minutes:) At night in our washroom there seemed to be an odor but it might have been my fault. Room was always done up before we came back from the beach each day and mini fridge re-stocked.

Beach was magnificent and the best in the area, we walked a couple of miles both ways and the Royalton's spot was A1. You did have to get up early to grab/reserve a hut but there was always an abundance of tables and loungers if you came later. A server was always around to bring you drinks all the time, if you like to tip even better but not necessary.

Pools were clean and never had a problem trying to get a seat but we usually stopped there on the way back to the room at the end of the day. The best mid-day burgers is a must by the pool.

Bartenders at swim-up bar were friendly and very accommodating to fulfilling your orders and requests. Tips not necessary but recommended.

Restaurants:

Grazie Trattoria was the best for us, our servers Jonathon & Orlando treated us with Royalty LOL and it was more of a fine dining experience. The tenderloin cut was as good as the selections in Hunters.

Zen was a fun experience and the food was very good, do not order the hot saki, never did the sushi dining but I heard it was good also.

Hunters steakhouse was an ok experience for us but most rave about it. I must say the steaks we had were very good but the waiters came up short on service and it seemed that they wanted to rush you out of there. You must do it at least once early in your trip so if you really like it you can give it another go.

Under the Sea was good and the waiters were very good but it seemed like they rush you out of there, once one course is done the other is right there.

Opa was ok, not the traditional souvlaki dinners you get on the Danforth but still enjoyable.

Gourmet Marché has it all, great for breakfast, lunch & dinner, there is something for everyone. There was a perception that getting coffee and refils always seemed to be a problem in the am, only once was it a problem for us other than that it was all good.

Caffe Lounge was awesome, great coffees all the time and nice snacks to hit the spot, great idea and was utilized by alot of the guests.

Night life is what you make of it. The best event is on Wednesday night, white beach party, go and experience it, it is alot of fun. As for the shows in the theater they are ok, the other outdoor shows are pretty entertaining. The casino is usually dead, very small and not alot of action. The sports bar does show various games and they are accommodating if you want a certain game but it seemed like alot of children in there at times, there was a pool table.

Go and spend a few hours at the water park in Memories, regardless of your age it is fun.

Don't go to the shopping area that Sunwing recommends unless you are looking for better quality jewelery, Royalton brings vendors in on one of the days and if you are looking for nic-nacs and can negotiate your better off buying from them. You can walk down and try your luck at the end of the road in that little market but you need to know your prices and not be afraid to deal.

Diamond club? Hard to say if it is worth the extra $, we were upgraded half way through and took advantage of the beach bar which served Corona, Budweiser and chicken wings. Never utilizied the butler service and did not change rooms but some of the rooms I believe are larger, you get to sit in the balcony of the theater, you might have a swim up room and you can make reservations to all the restaurants in advance. As for the booze upgrades sometimes you just have to ask but they have a very good selection anyhow.

I highly recommend this resort if you are having a wedding, bringing kids, looking for a very relaxing vacation with a great beach and pool facilities with good to great food and friendly staff. If you are a wild and crazy cat looking for stories to tell you pals back home you might want to surf trip advisor to find these types of resorts.

Lastly, the main lobby bar was our favorite place to hang out after a long day on the beach before dinner and sometimes after dinner. If you go to the Royalton please venture to this bar and see the Big E (Erasamo) & Smilely (Angel), tell them Canada Jack sent you and they will set you up with one of my favorites.

All in all you won't be disappointed.

Mauricio, thanks for a wonderful trip.

Room Tip: Unit 1 & 2 make sure you get even number room. Odd number looks out to service road.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Scarsaint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 May 2014
Dear Scarsaint,

On behalf of myself and all the staff of the Royalton Punta Cana, I would like to thank you for having chosen us for your stay in Punta Cana.

Your honest opinion can be an invaluable reference for other customers who are thinking of staying with us, for this reason we really appreciate the time that you have taken for sharing your experience on TripAdvisor

It is truly a pleasure for us to learn that you enjoyed your vacation here in our Hotel, your comment is very important to us to improve and better ourselves.

We hope to see you again.
Kind regards.

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
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Birmiingham
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2014

We have just returned from 2 weeks at the Royalton and had a fabulous holiday. This hotel is constantly cleaned and the food is fantastic.

Its been mentioned in previous reviews that there is quite often a wait for the Hunters Steakhouse, but to be honest the steak is just as good at any of the other restaurants. There was plenty of choice at the buffet restaurant and the food standard is just as good as the other restaurants. I can honestly say the food is the best I've had in an all inclusive hotel.

My one and only complaint is that there are not enough sun loungers with shade around the pool. You really do have to get up at the crack of dawn to get one, not my idea of a relaxing holiday. Its something that has been mentioned in previous reviews and the hotel needs to get it sorted urgently. That is the only thing that would stop me returning to this hotel which is a shame as the staff and service they provide is excellent.

We didn't do Diamond Club and didn't feel that we had to. There are waitresses that provide drinks round the pool (Wanda & Maria looked after us) so you only need to move for lunch (Burger bar if you don't want to move to far, or buffet at Gourmet Marche or Grazie Trattoria) or if you want to take part in the exercise sessions provided by the entertainment staff!

We had a great holiday at this hotel and once the sun lounger issue is sorted this hotel would be excellent!!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank chocoholic56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 May 2014
Dear Yvonne B.,

Firstly, the entire team of Royalton Punta Cana wants to thank you for sharing your positive experience with the rest of the TripAdvisor community.

We are really happy to read words as nice as yours. To know that our staff and service have exceeded your expectations encourages us to keep working day by day to maintain this proposal of high level that we want to achieve.

We will be glad to welcome you back again. We are at your disposal for anything you need.
Kind Regards,

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
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Durham
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2014 via mobile

Royalton, Royalton, Royalton....oh how I wish I was still their! Myself, husband, daughter(17) and son(7) all found it well worth the money. We booked at our local travel agents, then I e-mailed the hotel direct to upgrade to diamond club. So when we arrived we were shown straight to the fantastic cool diamond club lounge. Wher we helped our selves to drinks and snacks, these are on offer all day long and well worth a visit on a daily basis, even if it's just to cool off for a little while. The lobby ( which is right next to diamond club area) is a nice place to sit at any time, we often sat on the super comfortable sofas late afternoon just to cool off with a lush glass of wine. On an evening when their are shows on outside, this area is busy as people often sit here to watch the shows or bands, which are on the lower level where their are also seats.
Shows start at 9.45pm and you normally need to find good seats by 9pm, good seats anyway. The shows in the theatre are good and their is a bar in their also.
The beach is very nice, the diamond club area is fab! The cabana beds are so so comfy! BUT!!! No matter how much extra you pay, upgrading to diamond club! you still have to be up before sunrise at the crack of dawn.....6am to get a bed in the shade, I was their with lots of others at 6am to get the best bed with shade! All we needed was a tea trolley to keep us going because once you have the bed you want you must stay their till at least 8am or till another member of your family came to take over. This caused a lot of drama some mornings as some people would have put towels down only at god knows what time then returned to their beds. So this meant empty beds for hours 4 or maybe 5 hours empty. But I must say the staff were on top off this and if someone came looking for beds in the shade the staff would remove towels and explain to to those people when they eventually came back what the rules were! It was entertaining to watch on many occasion ! Wifi is all over which is ok but when your whole family are on it most of the day and night it can cause problems, mums out there you know what I mean? Don't you?
Diamond club bar on the beach is great, this opens at 10am. Try the juice which is may just the way you want it. Their are loads of clean towels and you can take as many as you need all day long. Carlito one of the bar men and his staff all work so very hard all day and night long, thank you to everyone. The bar food is served all day on the beach, you don't have to lift a finger. Try the dirty monkey it's delicious !
The rooms are so clean BUT the closet space and draw space is very limited so beware as a family of 4 we lived out of suit cases which makes the room look untidy all the time! The bath room is tiny for a family and the one and only wash basin has not being thought out well.... The tap is too far away from the basin which then leaks, leaving water all around the sink. We used towels around the sink to soak up the water. Not a real problem and we didn't complain and we always had plenty of extra towels it just makes more work for the sweet cleaners. They work so hard as it is!
Our room was in block 5 right next to diamond club beach area we had room 1351 so close and perfect for getting up early to grab cabana beds. We faced on to another hotel and path which staff used to get to bar and beach this was not a problem as you get to know all of them so well. So don't worry if you get these rooms we had ground floor and had no problems. Their are security guards on beach at all times.
Lunch time you must try Opa please try this restaurant at lunch time...lobster fish and meat platter lush!
The Martini bar makes the best chocolate martinis I have ever tasted!!!! Mmmmmmyummmm!
Food and restaurants are all good you must try Zen, Under the sea and The steak House! The Bellini bar is a short ride away next too the Mexican in memories it's worth a visit.
The water park is a must for everyone and is well managed and well looked after! Try the black hole!
Coffee shop serves ice cream coffee and cakes.
The pools are fab and not too deep, you can touch the bottom 4.35 just right for me as I'm 5ft 2 perfic!
As we were leaving we noticed they were putting more shade up on beach area which makes things less hectic I hope!
Shops are ok, we got a few things to bring home.
The buffet is good ( on an evening) but for breakfast it is hectic so try breakfast in your room now and again it's quick and easy always warm and much calmer than rushing around, you will see for yourself when you experienced this for yourself.
Oh I must say our Butler was no help what so ever! I think it just depends on who you get because we saw other peoples butlers really being helpful! Never mind.
Overall we enjoyed this two week holiday very much I wish I was still their and hope to return In the future.
P.s Try the parasailing and the half day outback safari with Pape and Lucky great guides great experience !
Also get a swim up room we didn't but will defo next time it's a must!
Anyway book this hotel and you will enjoy it, if you don't like it your just a moaning mini !
Oh and last but not least TIP the staff most off them don't expect it but work so hard all day long.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank ShawDurham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 May 2014
Dear ShawDurham,

First of all, thank you so much for selecting Royalton Punta Cana for your holidays, it is a big pleasure to read this wonderful opinion about our hotel. And of course, thanks for sharing it on Trip Advisor.

We are very proud to know that your last experience at Royalton Punta Cana exceeded your expectations. As you know our principal goal is to give you our best service, make your vacation exclusive and unforgettable. Your comments will help us with our continuing effort to assure our Guest Satisfaction.

We hope you visit us again next year. We will be very pleased to welcome you.
Kind Regards,

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2014

We were a group of 12 traveling together, ages ranging from mid-30's to mid-40's. I was a bit nervous going into the vacation based on previous reviews. We booked back in November for a May vacation. Overall we had a great time, but there is a lot of truth in what others are saying. With that said, we did not let it ruin our vacation.

Check-in and rooms:
4 of the 6 couples booked "ocean view" rooms, 1 couple booked a swim-up room, the other couple (who arrived a day after us) booked a ocien view suite. The couple that booked the swim-up got a nice room by the adults area pool. This location was great. With their suite, they were given the 'diamond club' upgrade. They were treated like royalty by their Butler Santiago the entire week. The rest the group were NOT given an ocean view room. They were told they might be able to move to a different room the next day if they wanted. Me and my boyfriend were told at check-in "Oh we are giving you a GREAT room". After we were all checked in they showed us which building we were to be in. It was going to be building #4 which is NOT ocean view. So I immediately went back to the front desk to point this out. At this point, I was wondering what was so great about this room? After about a 20 minute wait, they moved us into building #6. We got to the room, and technically you can call this room ocean view if you turn your head all the way to the right you can see a piece of the beach and ocean, but when you look directly out your sliding glass door you are looking at another balcony. In short, this hotel does not really have "ocean view" rooms based on the layout of the buildings. There are a few that look out directly at the ocean, but I believe these might be suites. With that said, the couple that spent money on a suite did NOT get their suite. In fact, they tried to move them over to the memories resort. They refused and were given a regular room by the pool. The lesson is, if you book this hotel, you may just want to book a regular room because chances are that's what you will get. Although if I went back, I would really prefer the swim-up suites in the adults only area. I felt those were great rooms in a great location.

We booked through Apple, so on day #2 we were invited to a presentation that goes over the resorts and excursions. During this presentation a member of our group spoke to our Apple rep about the room situation and he spoke with the hotel. He was able to get us all a diamond club upgrade in lieu of moving our rooms, which we accepted. At first we thought this was great, but in the end we were not given the same treatment as the guests who checked in as diamond club members. We didn't even see our butler, Jose A., the entire week. Other members of our group saw him only because they were making complaints, but we didn't so he didn't pay any attention to us. In fact, Jose A., complained about his job mostly basically saying that the lack of service was not his fault because the hotel keeps giving him more and more guests to take care of and expects him to make miracles. He had told our group that the hotel overbooks by 40% and they try to move people over to memories which is not as nice a resort. He said there were not many upgrades done to memories.

We had no problems with our safe, but we did have an issue with our room lock. The battery died. After having to speak with the staff member that sits at a desk in our room block, who tries to sell you time-shares….. one of the butlers came to our room with another key. We told them that the battery was dead. It was not a key problem. We had our keys, they didn't work. So then he had to send for security to get our lock open. This took about 15-20 minutes. A little annoying since all I wanted to do was get into my room at this moment….. but they were as responsive as I could have expected. I was more annoyed by the staff member in the lobby still trying to sell me time-shares when all I wanted was help to get into our room. He will mention "free gifts", etc…. it's a scam. I'm on vacation. I do not want to sit through any sales pitches.

Sewage Smell:
Yes, there can be a smell of sewage in the rooms. I noticed it. It wasn't always there, but from time to time it could be pretty bad when you were stanidng near the sink. I didn't really notice it when I was in bed or anything.

Beach / Pool / Grounds:
The resort is stunning. Everything is very clean. The beach is clean, sand is soft, and the water is amazing. Pool water is nice and warm. There were always loungers available. Because we were diamond club, we had access to the private beach. This was probably the only benefit to this upgrade. It's just a small sectioned off area and a bar close by, and they will send servers out to take drink/food orders. But believe me, they are not fast so be prepared to wait 20-30 minutes for your order. The ocean was calm for a few of the days, but was rough the last couple days, but it was a ton of fun to play in the waves. Careful though, the current can be strong. The hotel lobby is open air, and is a great place to hang out at in the evening.

Food / Service:
The food was amazing. We didn't have one bad thing. Hunters Steak House is amazing. Zen is amazing. Everything was great. The service was spotty. Some of the staff were great, and others not so great. It was hit or miss. Some staff won't even look at you or acknowldge you when you ask them a question, and others will go out of their way and make conversation. For example, our group of 12 was standing at the beach bar wanting to order drinks. The staff member took 2 of our drink orders and then ignored the rest of us??? I don't understand it. We were tipping WELL also, so I'm not sure what the problem was. We noticed that a lot of people don't tip at all.

Entertainment / Casino:
We didn't go to any of the shows in the theater….. I heard they aren't so great. They seemed to have some type of musical entertainment each evening in the main area of the hotel. From what I saw, it was all pretty good. The "white dreams" beach party was a fabulous time! We just sort of stumbled upon it just as it was starting, so we hung out and we were glad we did. It got very lively and everyone was having a great time.

The sports bar was dark and dingy. I really didn't like being in there. It smelled awful inside. It is also connected to the dance club that opens up a little later. This wasn't all that great either. It's just not a place we wanted to hang out in. It was too nice outside to be in these places. I'd rather sit in the lobby bar or the beach bar.

The casino was hardly a casino. It's VERY small. We actually ended up taking a 5 minute cab ride to the hard rock casino just down the road. That casino is very nice and pretty big. We had a great few hours there. You just get a bracelet when you arrive there and you can head right in. Free drinks while gambling.

Excursions:
We did the zip line, which was a lot of fun. You take a air-conditioned bus to a location and then switch to an open air bus to take you up the mountain. It was a VERY rough ride. The zip lining was a lot of fun.

We also did something called the Marinarium. This was not worth it. They take you out to a protecteted snorkel area to swin with nurse sharks and sting rays. By time we got off the catamaran (which is NOT really a catamaran at all), we were only in the water for 15 minutes before they made us come back. We then set sail and it became a "booze cruise" before they dropped you into what they call a "natural swimming pool", which to me was just a little sandbar in the ocean. We had fun, but for $100 per person?? Really not worth it at all. There were also a group of women on the cruise that were doing things with the staff members that they should not have been doing while we were in the water. We happened to catch them in the bathroom. Can you say disgusting? Things happend on this boat and on land when we returned that I can't even type here.


Overall:
We had a great trip. We weren't going to let the things that went wrong ruin our trip with our friends. We were just happy to be there enjoying the weather, beach, water, food, drinks….. I went into it with an open mind based on previous reviews. Once I was there I could totally understand what some people were saying. I think some of those people really let it ruin their time, but I did not want to do that. If I was at home, I'd be at work…. and I would rather be there! If anyone has any questions, feel free to contact me.

Room Tip: Adults only area seemed the nicest, but don't expect to get the room that you booked. Nobody in...
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank KitKatChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MauricioZarate, General Manager at Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino, responded to this review, 13 May 2014
Dear KitKatChicago,

We are very sorry that your holiday with us did not meet your expectations and we appreciate your constructive comments and thank you for having taken some of your valuable time to send to Trip Advisor your positive comments.

Your comments have been reported and they will be taken into account in the future. We will continue working to improve our services, as our top priority is to provide the best experience our guest.

We are at your complete disposal.
Kind regards.

Mauricio Zárate
General Manager
Royalton Punta Cana & Memories Splash
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino

Property: Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino
Address: Arena Gorda | Playa Bavaro, Punta Cana 23000, Dominican Republic
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 Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #25 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Royalton Punta Cana Resort & Casino 4*
Number of rooms: 470
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Royalton Punta Cana is a modern "All-In Luxury" Resort on Bavaro beach with unique all inclusive features like Reservation-Free Dining, international drinks, 24 hour room service and Dreambed. Guests can also take advantage of our All-In Connectivity exclusive features including: • Free Wi-Fi throughout the resort • Unlimited free in-room calling to North America and most of Europe • Convenient USB recharge and Bluetooth audio stations in your room • Download our free Royalton app and receive unlimited free calling plan from your mobile device while on our property, as well as unlimited free app-to-app texting. ... more   less 
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