Our family stayed at the Dreams Puerto Aventuras resort from 5/31 to 6/4. We had booked the reservation through 6/5 but decided to leave one day early because of our experience. This had been our fourth stay at a Dreams property. The most recent before this visit was Dreams Cancun in September of 2013. You can read my other reviews for them here on Tripadvisor as well. Our expectations were high because we have always been impressed by the service and the good condition of the properties. Our experience left much to be desired and leaves us wondering if that was our last stay at one of their resorts.
We arrived around 12:30 pm and I did not expect our room to be ready as check-in is not until 3:00 pm. The lobby area was rather small and packed with several dozen people waiting to be checked in or out of their rooms. I was surprised there wasn't a person handing out the cold, scented hand towels or chilled champagne like we had be accustomed to upon arriving at a Dreams resort. First impressions are important and we all noticed this immediately. We waited in line for approximately fifteen minutes before having someone from the Front Desk staff begin the check-in process. After filling out the required paperwork we were told our room wasn't ready which is what I expected to hear given our early arrival. We went to the World Cafe to eat lunch and shortly after returning I went back to the front desk and was told the room was ready.
We booked a Garden View room and got one on the first floor overlooking the adult pool area and Oceana. Upon walking into the room we immediately noticed the strong odor of mold. The air conditioning was not producing cold air and the sink had several cracks in it that had been patched up. The whole room just looked very aged and not well maintained. The room was adjacent to an elevator which was heavily used and we could hear all the servers loading carts in and out of it. It was so loud it sounded like they were rolling them right through our room. Then we did something that we have never had to do in over ten years of staying at an all-inclusive; We requested a new room. Diane and Maritza at the front desk were very accommodating and gave us a new room on the other side of the old one.
The condition of the new room was just as bad as the first but the air conditioning worked and we wanted to get out on the beach so we stayed there for the rest of the trip. These rooms need some major refurbishment and I still don't understand why they have desks in the rooms but no chairs to sit in. I would suggest avoiding the first floor if you can as the rooms are poorly insulated and you can not only hear people directly above your room but also people walking through the hallways on the 2nd floor. These hallways were like echo chambers and we would routinely here people singing, whistling, yelling, etc at all hours of the night. Speaking of disturbances, expect to be woken up nightly when the fire alarm goes off. I was told by a staff member this happens when someone is smoking in their room and the alarm goes off for the entire resort not just that one room. I think they should make an announcement acknowledging the person responsible for making it go off so the other guests can personally thank them for the wake up at 3:00 am.
The food at the restaurants was not as good as it has been in the past but the service was outstanding. Wold Cafe is the buffet that is open for all three meals. The selection of food was fair but not as good as it usually is and we found most of the dishes to be rather bland. Seaside grill was good for lunch but we never went for dinner. Our favorite was the sushi at Gohan but due to its outdoor location it was closed two of the four nights because of heavy rain. I highly recommend trying the banana rolls here and Miguel did an excellent job as our waiter. Oceana is the adults only seafood restaurant and was also quite good . Even when we showed up around 7:30 pm we only had to wait ten minutes to get a table here. El Patio was open for lunch and dinner although we never got to have dinner there due to closures for weddings. One thing that really bothered us was that almost every night one of the a la carte restaurants would be closed for a wedding party. The problem that I have with this is that we paid for our visit just like everyone else but were denied a service to accommodate a special event. There really should be a special facility here for weddings, conferences, etc rather than impacting your other guests' experience.
The beach was a huge disappointment here and I should have believed more of the critical reviews on this property that warned how small it is. If you like to stick to the swimming pools no worries but if you are like us and the beach is more important than you need to look elsewhere. It is extremely small and when the resort is near capacity you won't have much room to swim around because it it basically a small lagoon surrounded by large clusters of sharp rocks. As others have said you need to have a pair of pool shoes or you will cut up your feet if you go beyond waist-deep water. Getting chairs with a palapa was no problem though and the beach drink service is another signature Dreams perk that we love. Juan made sure we did not go thirsty – frequently checking in with us to make sure our blood alcohol levels didn't get too low! There is also a small beach area to the right of El Patio and the beach bar that has a large rock pool full of fish. We preferred to hang out near here because it was a bit quieter, although at times families with small children would come around so they could see the fish. Remember that this is a family resort and there were lots of kids here but they seemed to be well behaved and under control during our visit.
As I mentioned previously the most positive aspect of this resort was the staff. There was a tropical depression during the first three days of our visit that caused substantial rainfall. The entertainment staff did a great job providing various activities and extra snacks. Unfortunately the condition of the property itself makes it difficult for me to recommend it to anyone at the current per person room rates. We have stayed at many all inclusive resorts over the years and I would probably give Dreams Puerto Aventuras three and a half stars. If they put some work into improving the condition of the rooms I think it would be worthy of four. In its current state I personally would not return here.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Dreams Puerto Aventuras Resort & Spa is a getaway with near infinite pleasures. Guests of all ages experience Unlimited-Luxury(R), remarkable amenities led by spacious rooms and suites with lovely views, gourmet dining options, limitless top-shelf spirits and 24-hour concierge service - all wristband-free. Guests are entertained by miniature golf, complimentary greens fees at a nearby golf course, a PADI certified diving center and Dolphin Dreams by Dolphin Discovery, one of the largest dolphinariums in the Riviera Maya resort region. To unwind, Dream Spa by Pevonia(R) offers a generous pampering menu. For couples, the resort presents wedding, honeymoon and anniversary packages, and for business, facilities begin with the 1,646 square foot Playa Ballroom. It's all of this and more. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Dreams Puerto Aventuras Hotel Puerto Aventuras
- Dreams Hotel Puerto Aventuras
- Dreams Resort Puerto Aventuras
- Sunscape Puerto Aventuras Riviera
- Sunscape Puerto Adventuras
- Dreams Puerto Aventuras Resort & Spa Riviera Maya, Mexico