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“Some good...some bad.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada

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Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada
3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Dorada, Puerto Plata 11111, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #24 of 43 hotels in Puerto Plata
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Some good...some bad.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

We just got home from a week long vacation staying at the Celuisma Play Dorado in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. I'd read the reviews prior to our trip and really didn't know what to expect. I'm a firm believer that your attitude determines how great your vacation is going to be, but that being said, there's still some things that only experience can dictate. Here's my take on the Celuisma resort: The hotel is older, but our room was okay. We actually had a two story unit, but I can honestly say that I don't know why they would have the two floors. The first floor had a beautiful large dining room table with six chairs. There was a couch--if you can call it that. It was a 90 degree angle vinyl mattress on a wood frame. There was a small tv in the room and a small refridgerator. We never used this room. Why there would be a dining room table when there was no place to prepare food or a sink to do dishes in is beyond me. The only time we were in this room was when we came through the front door and went immediately up the spiral staircase to our room, or if we wanted to go out on the balcony (that overlooked a cement mini golf course--too funny!). A complete waste of space. Our room was clean and the towels and sheets were changed daily. We did have to ask for a washcloth and for the bottle waters that were advertised. Our bed was comfortable and there was a nice flat screen tv in our room upstairs. The hot water took over five minutes each morning to get to our shower...but when we got it, there was plenty of pressure and plenty of heat, so we could live with that.
I will agree with others that the staff was very friendly. However, there is additional "staff" there that are trying to sell timeshares to the renovated units and they are the most obnoxious group of people you will ever run into. They are EVERYWHERE throughout the resort and hound you constantly to attend their presentation. That was my biggest complaint.
The entertainment was fair--when they did it. It was scheduled to be every night, but there were two nights that we waited and it never happened. Many times they only spoke in Spanish and forgot to translate the "program" into English. That was sad.
The restaurants: Buffet was fair--sometimes delicious, but usually just fair. The best part was when we discovered that you could have made to order omelettes and smoothies for breakfast. The beach grill had excellent french fries, but that was about it. We were disappointed to discover that only the buffet and one restaurant was open each night. The specialty restaurants were very good on the night they were open. We especially enjoyed Kokomo's (the beach grill, but at night). The food was great and you couldn't beat the atmosphere--waves lapping on the beach...sunsets...moon rises!
The beach was excellent. Unlike the pictures from other reviews. It was clean and beautiful. There was no seaweed on the shore and the sand was soft even 20 feet out into the waves. There were no real waves, as there are coral reefs farther out preventing large swells. One day the waves were big enough to body surf, but that was not the norm.
The hot tub is a cold tub. Every day we asked them to turn up the heat and every day they said they would and never did. The last day we were there, the maintenance man said they were waiting for a part. Hmmm...we could see the water heater in the shed next to the jacuzzi and the pilot light wasn't even lit. Luckily, the weather was beautiful so we really didn't need a hot tub, but it would have been nice.
The tennis courts are clay, and are very nice. We were shocked to find that we had to pay for the lights at night...nothing on the website said anything about having to pay to play at night.
The pool was clean and nice. The only drawback was that it closes at 6:00 PM. The one arm where they have volleyball is nice, but it is the only entrance to the pool with stairs, so you would have people stroll through your volleyball game occasionally.
The grounds are beautiful. They even use some of the beautiful flowers when they make up your bed or deliver towels...nice touch.
There is a plaza less than a block away and golf courses surround the property. There is also a flea market about a half mile down the beach...that was a great find!
Well, I hope that this review has been helpful. I don't know that I would go to this same resort again, but we enjoyed our trip very much!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (73)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Truro, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2013

Our fridge leaked all over the floor, our bedding was not changed the entire week(when my friend threw up on one of them), the power went out 4 times, there were cock roaches in our building, we were supposed to have a renovated room but didn't receive one. the food was awful, but thankfully there is a store on the resort where we bought snacks. we were given one complimentary bottle of drinking water for the entire week. our room was clean. We managed to have fun but I would not reccomment this resort and definitley wouldn't pay to go back.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Groves, Texas, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

American Airlines put us up in this flea-bag place after they cancelled our flight. Thank God it was only for one night. It was so dirty, I was actually afraid to sleep in the bed. No washcloths. No phone. No television. No drinking water in room. We had to walk down to the dirty outdoor cafeteria and pour it out of the big water jugs that are supposed to go in water coolers. The glasses in our room that were supposed to be clean had dried toothpaste scum in the bottom. I wouldn't feed the food they had on the buffet to a homeless person! Bed was hard as a rock.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pickering, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

I spent a week at this resort in February 2013. Its greatest strength is its proximity to a beautiful beach. Our room was clearly one of the renovated ones--its decoration was a little austere, but it was very clean and the beds were comfortable. We got to see one of the non-renovated rooms on the last day, when we were allowed to use it after check out time. VERY glad we had been in a renovated one. The courtesy room had eye-searing bedspreads, and a cockroach in the bathtub.

In terms of the food, we were able to try all 4 of the theme restaurants, and ate at both the main buffet, and the lunchtime buffet at the beach. The food was pedestrian but adequate. I recommend avoiding beef--some of the chewiest meat I've ever been offered. The fish and chicken were generally good bets. There were many minor, amateurish problems, like running out of cups, rum, diet cola etc. I disagree with the reports of watered-down drinks. I found that everything I ordered had lots of fire in it! At least until they ran out of rum...

The staff were extremely variable in their attitude. Some were very friendly and accomodating, others reserved to the point of near hostility. Our lack of Spanish was likely one source of the problem...but surely anyone who works at this type of resort should be able to deal with English speakers. I got the sense that the employees' attitudes simply reflected their personalities. Evidence of a lack of training.

Most unpleasant were the constant appeals to buy stuff. On the beach we would get harassed every few minutes by someone with sunglasses or stuffed monkeys. And in the resort there were attempts to sell vacations, as well as tourist grot. I can't really fault the resort for the people on the beach, but I would have appreciated not being bothered on the grounds of the resort.

In all, we generally enjoyed our stay. The price was extremely reasonable, and we were tremendously lucky with the weather. We had the concierge book us a private tour of Puerto Plata, which was definitely a highlight of the trip (in spite of getting totally fleeced in some souvenir shops--make sure you negotiate!). But I don't think we'll go back.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2013

This hotel is poorly managed and is not for the tourists but is catered for the locals. This resort is run down. Book somewhere else. The food had too much salt and was under cooked. The dishes and utensils were dirty they had dried food on them. The staff were unfriendly. This hotel is not child safe and is not equiped for the disabled. It is not safe walking around Puerto Plata.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
christmas island ,canada
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

This resort is abit run down,however the staff are wonderful,food was good,animation team were awesome,especially rabbet(Pedro) sexy beast!!if only i was a few yrs younger haha. The shows were very entertaining,funny.We were treated very well by all the staff!!To those who say the drinks are watered down,I THINK NOT!!at least ours were not!!All in all we had a blast and will return next year,maybe for 2 weeks 1 week is just not long enough!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port of Spain, Trinidad
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

I have been to the Celuisma Tropical. First of all the food is horrible. The rooms are clean and very old. There is one pool . The beach is nice but rough. Locals come in and try to make you gamble when you are playing a friendly game of pool with your family. Well there is no bacon on mornings and the sausages are very hard. There is pasta everyday . The tours are amazing especially the one to Santiago and the cable carts . The country is amazing but not this hotel. My cousin doesn't drink soda when you ask for a fruit punch they mix it with sprite. The pool was clean . The jacuzzi was not all that warm . The staff is helpful. . But we made do and had a fun vacation. I will surely not be coming back here. My next vacation is in Curacao and I can wait . This is all for this review until next time we meet again Trip advisor folks . Bye!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada

Also Known As:
Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada Hotel Puerto Plata
Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada Hotel
Tropical Playa Dorada
Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada Resort
Address: Playa Dorada, Puerto Plata 11111, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#18 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
#19 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Celuisma Tropical Playa Dorada 3*
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