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“Good Value but remember it's not 5 star” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Paradise Playa Dorada

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Grand Paradise Playa Dorada
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Complejo Playa Dorada | P.O. Box 337, Puerto Plata 332, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 42 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
“Good Value but remember it's not 5 star”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2012

We stayed at the Grand Paradise from 25th January for 14 nights.

First off I love the DR having been there 12 times in the last 10 years. I have stayed in most of the hotels in Playa Dorrada. I would say that the Grand Paradise is a 3 and half star resort.

The food was cooked well and there is a fair choice but the choice is similar everyday. I am a fussy eater and still managed to find plenty to eat all the time. We tried both the Italian and Edens restaurants twice and enjoyed both.

We got a note saying we had to book for the buffet every night, either 630 or 830 but found that if you didn’t there was no issue. Thanks to Eduardo our waiter every morning and lunch time for his excellent service. He would always have my coffee for me when he saw me coming in and always smiling and happy.

The bar staff are also friendly and the service is good. In the UK we are good at queuing and waiting but other countries don’t seem to do this so don’t be afraid to jump in. There is NO PRESEDENTE. Remember this is a third world country and wages are very low. Tips go a long way. $1 at a meal and to the bar staff at night is very much appreciated and will get you better service.

The resort does seem to be frequented by older patrons but don’t let this put you off.

All of the entertainment staff Blue, Blacky, Bon Bon, Chiko are all fantastic and everyone had a great time with them.

Our room was overlooking the pool and could be a bit noisy, this never effected our sleep though. The room was basic but had everything you need and a good shower.

Half of the pool is always in the shade so the temperature is a bit lower than at other resorts but it’s refreshing and once you’re in it’s fine.

Do not be put off by reports of the beach vendors they are there to earn a living in a very poor country. A polite “no thanks” and they will leave you alone. I enjoy having a laugh with them and bartering for their items, never pay more than half the original price they give you. Don’t buy cigars on the beach.

The resort is always clean and staff always seem to be cleaning something.

If you want 5 star luxury pay much more and go to Punta Cana, for the price we paid we got what we paid for and had a great time. Thanks to our wonderful rep Sarah from TC for all her help.

Be wary of the French Canadians they are rude, ignorant, pretend they don’t speak English and need to learn that Quebec is part of Canada not a country.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (288)
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English first
North Bay, Ontario, Canada
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2012

Just got back from a week at Grand Paradise, Puerto Plata, DR. Having stayed in the playa Dorado complex at different hotels twice before, we knew what to expect with the beach (beautiful and clean, with miles of sandy beach for walking).
A slight mix up with our rooms, the hotel was quite helpful on day 2 to fix our accomodations, and offered a late check out time on departure day to help compensate for the mix up. The rooms are spacious, and kept very clean. We were in building 18, overlooking the tennis courts...very quiet.

We travelled with our two children aged 17 and 11. We absolutely loved the animation staff, with a special shout out to SuperJoe, Pepe and Chicky! They kept us entertained every day, and we enjoyed participating in the games.

The food was ok...if you're super picky, you might be hungry. Remember, you are in a different country, and things are not like they are at home. If you are a fan of peanut butter, bring a small jar with you as there is none. The Italian a la carte and the Grill a la carte were both good....again, not Canadian Grade A beef, but delightful just the same. If I could offer a suggestion, spend the money before you go and take Dukoral! It's worth it!

We met a great group of 8 fellow Canadians, whom we took most of our meals with, and thoroughly enjoyed their company.

All in all, this resort offers good value for your money. If you want blender drinks, 7 a la carte restaurants, jacuzzi's in your bathroom then this is NOT the place for you...but good luck finding all of that for the price you'll pay for a week at the Grand Paradise.

Beautiful weather, delightful staff, making new friends and a week of fun in the sun with my hubby and daughters....PRICELESS!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Onna-son, Japan
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2012

We've never been to the Dominican Republic and now have no desire to return. The Grand Paradise was OK, not luxurious by any means but it was adequate. Having only stayed in one 4 star and one 5 star resort in the past I will say that 5 star is the way to go. The front desk staff were not very accomadateing., the maid service was just OK, I don't think they really clean the rooms thorughly, just a light cleaning, we only received 2 towels daily. The food was slightly above average but lacked variety. Same thing every night with maybe 1 new dish to go with the theme of the night. the beach is big but you won't see crystal blue water and white sand, but what you will see is VENDORS, and lots of them and they are RELENTLESS!!!! Overall it wasnt the resort that made me not want to go back, its the area in general. The country is beautiful but we found that the excursions were shopping trips, maybe the economy has affected the area because friends we have talked to who have stayed at Playa Dorada didnt have the same experience we did. The majority of the guests are seniors so if you're looking to party, go to another resort. We didn't use the swimup bar because it is in the shade most of the day. No Presidente beer to be found, even when it is requested. Alot of little negatives add up!

Room Tip: Try a 5 star resort maybe in Punta Cana, from what I hear from friends it is much nicer there. O
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rhode island
Top Contributor
132 reviews 132 reviews
47 hotel reviews
Reviews in 66 cities Reviews in 66 cities
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2012

Having been to the D.R. at least 16 times in the last 10 years, my wife and I are rather knowledgable about what to expect. Having stayed at the G.P.(under a previous ownership) and having noted it being refurbished some three years ago while staying at a nearby resort, we wanted to renew with this resort once again. MISTAKE. The great things: beach, some staff. The average: check in and out(no smiles and little feeling of warmth) some wait staff (others if you requested a wine at lunch you would be lucky to receive it by dinner!!). Room a.c. was good, with okay bedding. Room was clean but upper Salvation Army furnishings. POOR: food, not only very basic but rather poor quality( and we KNOW D.R. food)., quality of the drinks(wine possibly a one day old vintage and served from gallon milk type containers!!). While not drinkers, I would think it would be very hard for someone to be drunk with the amount(and quality) of liquor served.. A general statement: it would seem to us that the AMSHA chain is a rather poor example of D. R, resorts. Low price and equally low quality.

Room Tip: There are better resorts in Playa Dorado.. and the D.R. Stay away from Amsha
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2012

First of all, i would like to point out that my girlfriend and I are a young couple ages 22-23, enjoying our first vacation to the DR. We have previously visited Aruba and Bahamas, and are no strangers to 5 star resorts. Now, coming to the DR we expected the 3.5 star rating the resort was given. Based on previous reviews, people seemed to expect 5 star service and quality. This resort is not terrible by any means. The staff is accommodating and friendly. Our room is nice and clean, and freshly refurbished. The food at the buffet hibiscus was decent and satisfying, considering they serve for quantity over quality. The beach has the best view of the nearby mountains. There are, however, many vendors on the beach who pester you to buy their goods, but they can easily be dismissed. Although, if you want to buy something from the beach vendors or the nearby orange "flea" market, HAGGLE the price down!!!!!!!! Many of the other guests are 40+, so not a young crowd at all, and perhaps harder to please. There are activities for everyone to enjoy. We got a GREAT deal on two excursions from one of the beach vendors to the waterfall tour and horseback riding. BOTH are recommended.
Overall, our stay here so far has been fun and relaxing. The previous reviews are a bit too harsh considering you get what you pay for. This place is a great VALUE.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2012

It wasn't my cup of tea...but everyone looked like they were having fun and it is an inexpensive place to go. I thought the food was better than other reviews and a great place if you're looking for a place to party. The rooms are reasonably clean but the smell of mildew is pretty bad everywhere...it's old and on the water...The only really weird part was you were only given one key per room. I thought that was bizarre when you have two in a room. They do it to control the power as the key is used to turn on the air conditioner and lights...but many travelling found it to really be hard to take a nap through the day since they couldn't find their partner with the key...make sure to bring tip money as you will get better treatment...but that goes without thought :)

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2012

We did not start this trip off in the best fashion. After flying in after 10pm we got to the hotel around 11. There were approx 50 of us on the bus and only 2 people working the desk. We were not checked in until after midnight. They then expected us to find our own room in the dark with no directions or map of the resort.
We took a deep breath and were determined to have a good time.
The next day we came to realise that our room was a party room. Any room that overlooks the pool also has to deal with the speakers and entertainment that come with it. The speake’s boom through your room making you feel as though you are on the "stage". This was esp. awful on karaoke night!!!!! The noise continues well after the 11:30 last call as everyone stockpiles drinks and carries on all hours of the night. I felt sorry for anyone with children.
We asked the front desk daily to be moved. I offered to pay for an upgrade it that would help. We were told nothing was available and to come back daily at 9am. We were finally moved on our 4th day to a very nice Jr suite in the 7 block. IT IS FAR QUIETER THERE AND WORTH ANY AMOUNT OF UPGRADE $!!!!!!!
The food was awful. The buffet was a waste of time for all three meals. The Italian a la carte I found to be not bad but my husband had a plain pizza and could not eat it.
THANKFULLY there is a Pizza Hut (that tasted like home) 5 mins from the resort in the plaza which is why we made it through the trip alive. I am not a greasy PH fan but it sure beats the slop they were serving.
The rooms are only serviced once daily. This would normally not bother me in the least however when you are not allowed to flush toilet paper, maybe they could have a few more shifts. The smell was not pleasant to say the least.
The beach was lovely. The hustlers on the beach were not a bother. They are trying to sell their wares so of course they will ask you to look, but a simple no was all that is required to have them leave you alone. The waves were very strong however so snorkelling was not an option.
The pool was FREEZING cold except near the pool bar for obvious reasons :s
On a brighter note the staff was lovely. Jose Pilar at the bar made up for all the crap we had to deal with which made our stay upgraded to a 2* review.
We have been to the Dominican many times usually staying in Boca Chica or Puna Cana. I would never go back to Puerto Plata again as a result of this resort. That is really saying something.

Room Tip: Blocks 7-11 are the only quiet places. Stay away from the pool area if you ever want to sleep!
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Grand Paradise Playa Dorada

Address: Complejo Playa Dorada | P.O. Box 337, Puerto Plata 332, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Paradise Playa Dorada 3.5*
Number of rooms: 425
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Also Known As:
Grand Paradise Playa Dorada Hotel Puerto Plata
Paradise Beach Club Puerto Plata
Paradise Beach Resort Casino
Paradise Beach Puerto Plata
Paradise Beach Club Casino

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