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“Hidden Gem”

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Essenza Retreats At Punta Palmera
Ranked #11 of 35 Punta Cana B&B and Inns
New Smyrna Beach, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Hidden Gem”
Reviewed 19 March 2014

This place is beautiful and in a very quiet location. The service is excellent. The rooms are beautiful and the views are awesome. That said, there are some really strange things that need to be clarified. This place shows up under B&B's in trip advisor which is not correct. It seems like more of an unfinished condominium project that they are also using as a Hotel. Even though the place is not finished there wasn't much annoying construction while I was there so largly a non issue but I would've never seen it if I didn't click on B&B's. Also, I found it dificult to find a working phone number for the Palmera so I had to book on Expedia. This is also not an issue because the Palmera will contact you soon after you book a reservation. They will supply free transportation from Punta Cana airport but not Santo Domingo. They will also give you one free ride to get supplies at the local super market.

Punta Palmera is in Cap Cana which is a newer developement probably constructed about 10 years ago. It seems like either people don't know about it or they prefer the all inclusives in Punta Cana which is like 20 minutes away. I preferred the solitude of Cap Cana. There are nice beaches and some decent restaurants. There aren't many Americans (this is a good thing. We suck. Yes, I mean you) so english is not as common as other islands.

I loved the Dominican Republic. The people are kind hearted and appreciative. The weather is perfect. It's a place where you can litterally do whatever you want and nobody will bother you. Hopefully I can move there someday.

Room Tip: upgrade to 1 bedroom it's worth it
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled solo
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8 Thank eaglesfaninfla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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65 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (19)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 March 2014

What a heavenly place! Fitted our needs exactly and we cannot wait for our next visit there!

After our Club med Punta Cana was cancelled due to the snow storms and they did not not refund us we decided to look for somewhere else. Punta Palmera did not have many reviews since they were opened Sep 2013. We decided to take the risk and had such a good experience!
First, the warm welcome and the personal everyday caring by the whole staff was unforgettable!
I don't even know where to start: Keren, the sales executive, who was phenomenal and Domingo our great driver, Yevette, Jose, Angelo and many others. I must say that all staff were very friendly and always tried to find the best for us. The apartment was nice and neat with some Ikea furniture that actually made us feel at home. The place is pretty new so everything was clean (which was very important for me!)
The view from the balcony to the pool and beach was outstanding. We were looking for a quiet place, with a friendly staff and NOT many activities on site but anything can be arranged for a good price by the Hotel. We went snorkeling and we loved the fact they take you to a supermarket which had most western products (even gluten free) and cook for ourselves some of the time.
(Our friends in other "all inclusives" had constant stomach issues while we did not.) We had their breakfast" A-la carte" two time which was nice, and dined at Cappuccino which had nice food but maybe a little too pricy.
Bottom line - this was perfect for us, quiet, clean, small and private with the personal touch.
Hope it stays this way since we saw several constructions areas around.
A huge thank you to all the staff for making our vacation perfect!
Linor & Family

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank linlu1000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 March 2014

We just returned from 8 days at Cap Cana's Punta Palmera Condos. We stayed in C-43 which was a 1 bedroom 1 bath with a full kitchen on the fourth floor. The property was in great condition, everything we needed was there. We booked through TripAdvisor with Leyden Karen. Leyden was the most wonderful hostess. She picked us up from the airport and was there for us every day for the rest of our vacation. Domingo is her right hand man. He escorted us to the grocery store, marina, to rent golf carts, and dropped us back at the airport in the end. He hustled every step of the way and always with a smile. We miss that smile already! Kenya and Bethelys ran the concierge/office daily. Both were outstanding and always helpful. We wanted to take a boat charter on one of our days. The only thing we could find was 100-200 people party cruises. Bethelys searched and found us a private charter for $105 each from 8a-1p through Seapro. A driver picked us up and took us to Punta Cana to start our day. It was perfect! Two snorkeling stops and swimming in the most beautiful waters. On the weekends there were a handful of other guests at Punta Palmera, but during the middle of the week, we had the beach and pool to ourselves. The maid service was daily and couldn't have been better. Fresh linens and kitchen cleaned for us. One thing to note is the maid will knock and enter regardless of what you say, so if you happen to be enjoying the pool on the veranda in your birthday suit... say hello and sip your rum punch. The prices for food and drinks were very reasonable. Wine, beer and liquor were all similar to US prices. We went to several restaurants in the Cap Cana area. Never many people there and always the most incredible service. We walked and jogged the Marina at Cap Cana daily. We rented GEM golf carts twice $50/day) and tooled around the entire Cap Cana district (45 sq miles). We stopped at all the hotels and resorts along the beach and checked them out. Alsol Del Mar lobby bar is a great stop. They charged our GEM car and gave us a free shot of tequila and some fruit while we waited (we were not guests...). We took the resort bikes to Juanillo Beach one day. It was a good 30 minute ride and the bikes were not in the best shape, but it was fun nonetheless. The Juanillo Beach was no more spectacular than the one at Punta Palmera. Also, the food prices at the restaurant there were outrageous. They built palapas on the beach at Punta Palmera while we were there. They really add character to a beautiful beach. There were minimal waves, perfect for swimming and snorkeling right at the condos. We did not golf while there, the prices were just too high for our skill level. There was a lot of construction going on. The Punta Palmera is not finished. Most of the complex is structure only and desolate. The entire area around the marina is struggling post the financial crisis. The place is very empty. If you are looking for a party vacation, this is not the place. The area is absolutely beautiful. The infrastructure is high-end. Definitely recommend Punta Palmera. A huge thank you to all the staff for making our vacation perfect! Kevin and Tina

Room Tip: C-43 view cannot be beat!
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank SandSeeker67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 3 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 March 2014

What a phenomenal place!

The communication leading up to our Valentine day visit was so on point! The assistance by Leyden, Domingo and the rest of the staff was superb!

Our unit had an amazing wrap around balcony with endless sunrises & sunsets just like the pictures! The grounds, immaculate! Cap Cana is a gated community resort where you have access to everything!!

Wednesday we took a trip to the grocery store and stocked up on some goodies to last the week for breakfast. Thursday we visited Sanctuary Cap Cana (where i originally had reservations, but cancelled due to bad reviews) for lunch at Blue Marlin and had the best time with the views on the crystal blue water and great food! For dinner we went to Dux in the Marina which is like a Club from Ibiza! They had 2 for 1 sushi and an open bar for Women the entire night!

Friday we relaxed for most of the day and enjoyed the Punta Palmera grounds. Pristine Pool & Complimenting Beach made for a perfect environment to spend Valentines Day. For dinner, we visited Farallón which had the best view of Cap Cana from way above sea level. The moon was shining and the staff went out there way to ensure Valentines Day dinner was perfect, in which it was (Minus the Taxi waiting - but for only $2, it was worth it!)

Saturday we did some more relaxing around the Palmera grounds and even cooked out in the grill a few times. In the evening we hit the Marina and dined at Ill Cappuccino, a nice Italian restaurant along the banks of the Marina Cap Cana.

The housekeeping was on point! I'm not sure if she knew when we left each day but as soon as we returned the room was cleaned from top to bottom! Dishes washed, bed made, towels replenished! Had to leave her a big tip for doing such an amazing job.

The Bose surround system was a huge hit for us... Being on the balcony and in the jacuzzi tub with sounds of smooth R&B made for the best backdrop while overlooking the Caribbean Sea! The rain shower was refreshing and the modern furniture and decor made me feel right at home.

Hesitated on writing a review because I want to keep this hidden gem to myself, but it was too perfect! I strongly recommend this location. All Inclusive Resorts are OK but lacks the experience! Venture out and explore Punta Palmera, Cap Cana Dominican Republic!!

Ii plan to book our return visit for Summer and Winter!

Room Tip: Corner Suite FTW! Sunrise & Sunset in one space!
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank ianeyecan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brussels, Belgium
Level 6 Contributor
105 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 February 2014

We booked the apartment for a week. There was no reviews back then available as it is pretty new place and we based our decision on pictures available on internet. After paying deposit we had small issue with a deposit so before our arrival we were quite skeptic of what we can expect. We couldn't be more wrong. This place is just incomparable with any other place we ever traveled to. Sure if you want to party all night long an you enjoy the noise and bustling cities this is not a place for you. We were very focused on finding a quiet and relaxing place and it can not be better than that. Apartment are outstanding, very spacious and with all amenities you would need. Our apartment was facing the sea to the east so each morning we could enjoy remarkable sunrises. This place is so great that if I knew how good it is I would not hesitate to stay there even a month. Not far away from the hotel there is tiny shop with basic food supplies but the staff can organize for you a shuttle with a wait to supermarket. We really had a hard time leaving as we felt there really great. And most of all the biggest asset of that place is staff - Leyden, Betelys, Domingo and my beloved Yvette. They made us feel so special that after a week of stay we both felt like we are leaving someone special to us. I would never hesitate to come back there. Worldwide top class. Thank you Punta Palmera.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
8 Thank Krzysztof G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Princeton, New Jersey
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2014

We rented a condo here for Christmas week 2013. The condo was perfect -- Exactly like the photos. The staff were very nice. The pool and beach were both lovely. It was not crowded, so very easy to find a chair any time of day. There is a nice poolside cafe. The only negative was that it might have been too quiet. There were other families there, but not enough to make it feel lively. On the other hand, the whole Marina complex at Punta Cana was safe and it was easy to walk around. We visited other areas on foot, and when it was too far, the taxis were just $2.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank travelwithteensNJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Essenza Retreats At Punta Palmera

Property: Essenza Retreats At Punta Palmera
Address: La Marina Cap Cana | La Marina Cap Cana, Punta Cana 23302, Dominican Republic
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 35 B&Bs / Inns in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Essenza Retreats At Punta Palmera 4*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Punta Palmera It is a luxury apartment complex located in the heart of La Marina Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic. Just 10 minutes from Punta Cana International Airport, on the beach, 5 minutes from the spectacular Bay of Juanilllo of more than 5 km of beach and spectacular golf course Punta Espada. The suites are simply spectacular, very spacious and bright, perfectly finished, equipped to detail and decorated with style. Each apartment has air conditioning, cable TV, bed linen (lingerie), bath towels, toiletries and hairdryer in the bathrooms, fully equipped kitchen, and except for Junior Suites, all have a large lounge with living and dining room and terraces with jacuzzi and spectacular sea views and / or beautiful gardens. Unforgettable sunsets and spectacular sunrises and privacy, independence, freedom and exclusivity of the suites of Punta Palmera, make Punta Palmera Cap Cana a special place; all accompanied by a personalized and exclusive Hotel. • Frontdesk from 7:00 am to 11:00 pm. • Wi-Fi in suites and public areas. • Covered parking for one vehicle per suite. • Infinity pool and extensive gardens. • Deck chairs and umbrellas at pool and beach area. • Fitness center. • Restaurant and Pool Bar (open from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm). • Coffee Lounge Las Palmeras (open from 8 am to 11 am). • Concierge service (with general destination information, booking assistance activities, excursions, restaurants, spa and beauty salons, car rentals, fishing boats, golf and transportation). • Multipurpose Room 200mts up to 100 guests. • Banqueting service for groups. • Direct access to the beach. • Security 24 hrs. Additional (extra cost): • Massage. • Nannies. • Hair stylists and makeup artists. • Private Chef. • Etc. ... more   less 
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