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“Been ther lots, but management needs to spend money” 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 #10 of 42 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Aurora, Canada
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
“Been ther lots, but management needs to spend money”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2013

I've been to this resort 5 times and my main complaint is the management just doesn't care. Now I understand they've done some room updates (which were looooooooooooooong overdue) but that doesn't fix management's attitude. The staff, for the most part, are wonderful. Say "hi" to Alan at the beach bar and Luis at the pool bar. Great guys. The resort is not big so easy to get around. Steps to the Playa Dorada Mall, if you go away to shop?????? The original Robert Trent Jones golf course is right there and afternoon tee times, after 2 are ridiculously low. But you'll sweat your shorts off because of the humidity. The beach isn't that great, but better than some. Horseback riding (offered free) is with Joyce the Horse Lady. She is a howl, so don't miss going with her for a ride. Now you might ask "Why have you been there so many times if it needs all this attention?" Well, simply put, PRICE. When I was going yearly there, the price per week was unbeatable. Prices to this place are not bad, but the Dominican tourism board better do something, and quickly, about the exorbitant taxes on a week vacation. When the taxes are more than the trip itself, then something is wrong. That's largely why I shifted my vacations to either Mexico or Cuba. Better value for your money. But as long the planes keep filling, they will keep those taxes in place. Want them lower? Then stop going to the DR until they get the message.


  • Stayed October 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
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2,106 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (323)
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English first
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2013

Back for the 14th year in a row. Always the best service and amenities.Met up with other repeat friends from Montreal, Toronto, St. Catherines, plus made new friends from London, Sudbury, Wisconsin, and Quebec. We'll keep returning til we can't walk!

Room Tip: Building 9 is on the ocean; great sunsets!
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Sudbury, Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2013

WE have just come home from our two week stay at the Grand Paradise Hotel in Puerto Plata!!!! We arrived on Sunday April 14 and left on Sunday April 28, 2013....This is our 5th time to the hotel and I must admit that there is more than one reason we keep coming back!!!

Firstly.....THE STAFF!!!!
When you walk in the door you are greeted by the Hotels bellhops who always have a great smile (and because we've been there so often, a big hug), then off to the reception area where our friend DAMARYS, a young lady who really knows her stuff, had everything ready for us without any hesitations. Our room wasnt ready upon our arrival, we kind of anticipated that seeing as we had arrived so early, but it was no big deal, there is a huge, clean, bathroom where we were able to get changed and commence our holidays. Off to the bar we went to say "Hi" to the fimiliar faces. There are so many names I want to mention, but some have slipped my mind, anyhow, GUILLERMO was the first to spot us and came out from behind the bar to give us hugs and welcome us "home", our drinks were a little strong, but by the end of your holidays, you dont even notice...lol...at night we often retreated to the Extasis Bar by the pool for our "entertainment" of the night. If youre looking for broadway or Las Vegas shows, this place isn't for you, rather the entertainment staff go above and beyond to make you either part of their show or ensure you are enjoying their show. CHISPA is our main man!!! He is so good at what he does, and he rarely forgets a face!!! He's very warm and isn't afraid to join your table at lunch or come hang out with you during slow times. We are very hopeful to see him again in October!!! DONKEY is new and we didn't really get to now him like CHISPA, however his EMCEE skills are pretty remarkable, he knows how to get the crowd going. Our bella, BONBON, the "towel girl" was so sweet to us, everyday she worked, she made sure to come and say good morning to us and offered excellent service at all times!!! Our favourite bartender would have to be OSWALDO and his sidekick JOSE. Never did our glasses go empty when he was working, they always made time to ask how we were, OSWALDO has become like a brother to us....he sure is missed!!! The staff in the main dining area are prompt and at your beck and call. We were with a larger group and they had our table set and reserved at all meals, which was nice during the weekend when the Local people came to enjoy thier country. The A la Cartes haven't changed, the staff is awesome there!!! I wish I had written names down now!!! Make sure to seek out SPEEDY, the water sport coordinator!!!

There was much more variety this time around which we were grateful for as we were spending 14 days there. There was a different theme every night, if there you can't find something you like, then you too picky. At times there were line ups to wait to enter the dinning hall, but I can only see that as being a good thing...that means more and more people are coming back. The A La Cartes could use a change up of the menu, the food is okay, to be honest, id rather eat at the buffet, just my opinion, I invite you to form your own.

CLEAN!!! Our room was cleaned in the afternoon, which I thought was pretty perfect, and our cleaning lady was tooooo cute...she left fancy things made on the bed all the time. Our fridge was stocked with water and pop every day. We stayed in an Oceanview Suite, the sound of the ocean put us to bed every night.

The beach at this resort is like nowhere else in the Playa Dorada complex. It's clean, and huge. There are reefs not far off the shore where we saw a Lion fish, plenty of beautiful striped fish, Blue "Dory" fish and a great big old crab. Let me take a minute to talk about the vendors, or the "blue shirts" as you may have heard, yes, they can be a pain in the butt, everytime you turn around there is someone trying to sell you something, but listen, these people don't make a lot of money, the job availability there is low so they bust their butts trying to make a couple bucks to support their families. These vendors PAY a fee to be allowed to sell on the beaches. You can barter with them, their all very friendly and if you low ball them, they'll laugh it off and walk away. Or a simple "NO GRACIAS" keeps them moving too. BTW the stuff sold on the beach can be purchased at the Plaza"Cheapy Cheap", probably half of what they want on the beach. Anyhow, it's just part of the experience!!! And if you're looking for a good booking agent on the beach for Excursions, request to speak to either Gilberto or Hector (the protector), they have good prices and yes you are covered by insurance, their company is the same company that Nolitours books their excursions through.

YEah that was a crappy deal...it has become quite expensive and you can no longer log out to save your remaining time. I think that there have been enough complaints about that, I'm sure that when we return in October, their internet system will be a better deal for those of us who need to use it to communicate with our children.

Overall our time there is never money wasted, I am already counting down 5 months and 19 days until our next trip there...hope this helped you make a decision, I can honestly say that if you go with an open mind and normal expectations, that you will have a remarkable time!!! Hasta lleugo!!!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2013

Everytime I go to Grand Paradise, I never have a complaint, the Buffet is the best, they have a different theme every night.I could not believe Jose Pilar one of the Bartenders, remembered me, they had plenty of Sambucca, and it went down smooth,Our waiter,another Jose has been there for many years, he is a most wonderful and attendful person you will ever meet.. we all loved Bon Bon, our towel lady, who has also been there for sometime, I have to say , i LOVED THE PIZZA, the food was just so good, and lots of it. beach chairs were plentiful, and the beach was clean. I do have to say, the one most enjoyable excurrsion is the catamaran, loved it,the entertainment was a blast........ Overall the entertainment at the resort was alot of fun.

Room Tip: I alway's upgrade to a suite, that is my prefference.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Nerviano, Italy
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

I visit this hotel every year because my husband enjoys a lot ayi. In particular I love the beauty of its beach, has good food options, has many atractions to entertain children. The area for recreation is quite broad. The pool is good and quite easy to access. It also has a very curious Jacuzzy Overall the staff is friendly and helpful. it guillermo diaz

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

We stayed at this resort in late April of 2013, and left on an extremely sour note. This hotel has set up what can only be described as a scam with their internet service. Upon check-in, the hotel reception gives a brief description of the resort amenities, and hands you a hotel key, and a 1-hour free wifi token. They use this token to connect your device to their service and begin collecting outrageous fees throughout your stay, without any mention of your balance until check-out.

Once you have signed into your device once with the code, even if you only use 1 minute of internet time, your hour will be expired. Every single minute of internet use after this session will be charged at a rate of $7.99/hour*. * being that, anytime your device is disconnected, you are charged another $7.99, whether your hour was completed or not. Furthermore, infrastructure is so primitive that connections are constantly interrupted. The company is fully willing to charge these exorbitant rates on their scamming system, knowing full well how absolutely horrible their wi-fi infrastructure is.

I had to head to the lobby and get assistance for 10-15 minutes with a lobby worker to make the connection stick on my computer. Previously, all connections cut out nearly instantly (but not without recording a charge on my account, it turns out).

The worst part was, at the end of the trip, when we were checking out, they hand us the bill for these services. Expecting maybe $30 worth of charges for the week, I was amazed to see that the resort was charging me $77 CAD for the Wi-Fi usage (8 hours by their records, maybe 1 hour of real connection). Amazed, I told the management that this must be a mistake. I brought up how I had even been forced to come bring my laptop to the lobby for assistance in maintaining a connection. I was sure this was a mistake, and that they would help me fix the bill to a more reasonable amount.

What I met was a brick wall of powerless employees who made zero effort to accommodate the issue. They refused to acknowledge the major problems with their system, and just kept telling me it was my fault for trying to use the internet. I am not someone who goes to a resort and sits in his room on the wi-fi, but this is 2013, some people absolutely need access to the internet. It's no longer a luxury. This is something which is essential to many resort-goes, and the service being provided by Grand Paradise is horrible, and is compounded by the ridiculous pricing system which is designed to extract as much cash as possible from unsuspecting hotel-goers.

At checkout, ten other people had the exact same issue. People were charged between $20 to over $100, and all were clueless as to how these charges accumulated. When you're running such a blatant scam, customers get so turned off from your services. I can speak for many when I say that we will not be returning simply based on this fact.

Avoid this resort, don't let them get away with gauging their customers for lackluster services. Show them that we aren't a bunch of fools that can be intimidated and tricked out of our hard-earned money.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

I stayed at the Grand Paradise Playa Dorada from April 15th 2013 – April 22nd 2013.
I would first like to say : I am a black woman aged 33 but I look younger. Stayed in room 1340 and my friends who are a couple (white and black) stayed in the room beside us. This room is a standard room (even if they try to tell you it’s not) it’s not a suite. We were promised a balcony and if I didn’t bring the information to show front desk when we checked in, they probably wouldn’t have offered a room with a balcony. We were shown the room with the balcony which had a very bad mildew smell so even though we paid MORE for a balcony we chose to stick with the standard room. 1340 is right behind the main stage where all the performances are done at night time. I highly suggest if you are the type to go to bed early to request away from section 20.
The rooms were nice. One check mark.
Manny and Chispa (who you will see there if you go after my review) did make our trip better. Manny is great. Young, energetic and hilarious. He really makes the shows fun. This resort is NOT for young people in my opinion. Either it was the dates we chose or just going to Puerta Plata itself but there are many older people on this resort. The 2nd day you have to go to meeting to listen about the resort and what it offers. All I have to say is that don’t go if you do your research. There is no penalty for not going. Near the buffet they have the same information listed. She will warn you not to purchase excursions elsewhere. I suggest you walk out from the hotels and you can find stores that ONLY sell excursions. Those are way cheaper and just as safe as the hotels pricing. We did 27 waterfalls and rented some ATV’s. Never go with first price offered. Some one else is always offering it cheaper. We could have done 2hrs of atv’s for like 60 each couple and ended up paying 85$ per couple which sucks. It’s the same places they take you.
I honestly will say we made the best of our trip, but being a black tomboyish female I received many looks and just an uncomfortable attitude from many of the females that worked at this resort. The men who work at this resort would treat the Caucasian woman and men like royalty and when it came to us (3 black and one white) he’d take his time to take our order or many times we were overlooked. My money is just as good as the next person, silly because due to this/ many were not given tips. The people who were lovely all received tips as well as other things. The one white female with us received the same crap treatment when she was with us, but when she was alone (even she commented on the difference) . WOW. What year are we in. Luckily my girlfriend studies Carribean history at University and explained it all to us. The bad treatment ranged from being ignored completely when asking a question or ordering a drink or having someone 4th in line come up and be addressed first even when I was clearly standing there for 5mins before hand. Or just stares CONSTANTLY (which i dont mind ) but stares and then talking in Spanish to the worker beside you and they both laugh then look at you again: is a Definate disrespectful way of displaying professionalism. To not even being treated or answered at all. It just got to a point where we'd rather hang outside off resort than deal with the workers that work on the resort.
I’d like to comment on the bad:

- no 24 hr bar (what? So get all your drinking in before 2am) which to me is RIDICULOUS)
- If your drunk the night before and you wake up around 11am : good luck finding anything to eat, because the lunch buffet won’t open until 12:30 and there is ABSOLUTELY nothing else to eat. So us younger ones starved many a time or just paid to go eat off the resort
- No burgers on this resort either. Funny but most do have MEAT burgers. They offered fish and chicken.
- 2 drink minimum in small glasses. MAKE sure you do what all the older people did. Go to COSCO or Walmart and buy a big thermos. You can ask them to fill that up and not have to go to the bar every 5mins because your drink is finished
- The swim up bar should be cleaned a bit more often, 2 of us swam in it and both got splinters from some metal shavings on the floor of the pool (I never went back in after)
- If you can get 2 room keys; you’re in heaven. One for the room to keep it cool and the other one stay on you. Don’t loose it : $40.00 fee
- ***DO NOT USE THE INTERNET free one hr thing they give you: 3 people from our flight used it and all were charged from 100.00 – 300.00 dollars (even though they swore they used 1 hr and put in the free internet code. One guy was arguing when we were leaving with front desk with his 12month old baby with him and they refused to take off the fee. He was fuming.
- The food here is blander the bland. YUCK. I thought nothing could be worse than Cuba food. I Was wrong. At least in Cuba I could eat the fruits. The fruits even looked dingee or just yuck. Either there was too much water or not enough selection or the same thing each day. I couldn’t hold anything down. I got to a point were it was hard to eat bread and fruits. The only food I could keep down was OFF the resort. SOo good but make sure yOU ASK WHAT THE FINAL PRICE for things before you order. Even with trust and a friendship like rapport they will still try to swindle you. Unfortunate. We went to this one place for a burger. It was delicious: the menu says 390 pesos. And we agreed. Only to find out that she added all this unnecessary tax and when we didn’ t have enough pesos changed the 23 US to a 29 infront of us. They will lie and scheme and it got to the point were we couldn’t trust anyone or take anyone’s word. I mean up your amount by a little bit but trying to hustle us 75% more than what the actual cost is , simply is ridiculous. You go into the city, make sure you don’t’ get hustled. We got a taxi to get us there and wait for us for 30$ us there and back. I heard you can get it cheaper 20$ there and back. Or 10 one way. If they say no, say cool, I’ll ask someone else, and more times they’ll say fine.
- Friday/sat/Sunday get ready for the hotel to be invaded by locals. These locals take over, which isn’t bad if they were nice: but maybe again it has to do with us being black and female : not too sure, but they really take over the hotel. If you speak Spanish your fine, If not: your 2nd in line to whatever they want first.
- 27 falls: don’t do it if your not a good swimmer or if your afraid of the unknown or if you get tired easily: it’s a lot of hoisting up and using ur arms and I think personally they book way to many people at a time to make money that you can’t even really enjoy it. You will be swimming in the “natural water” falls and all the sudden your head hits the feet of the person from the group ahead of you. SO annoying. I still tried to have fun with it , though 2 of my friends stopped as they had no idea it would be so challenging (not for non swimmers, or those who get claustrophobic easy)
- You will get swarmed with beach vendors. It does get somewhat annoying after a while since not even 10mins goes by and maybe 5 will come up to you. Just say no thank you and they’ll move on.
- It’s not a 4 star hotel. I give it a 3 to be super honest. And yes I’ve stayed at 4 and 5. this is definitely not 4.
- The cups floating into the pool got annoying. And just doesn’t look nice.
- The seaweed that floats between your feet in the beach is annoying. Its always on a YELLOW flag even when at times it looked violent and should have been a redflag. I still don’t know who or where the lifeguard is/was.
- Even the horse buggie guys will try to rip you off. We were nice to one who then tried to ask for more money each time. We ended up walking or avoiding him. As soon as you step off resort they’ll ask you to take you somewhere , tell you not to worry it’s cheap> MAKE SURE You get the final price for everything before you step in or get on is all I’m saying.
- 4 star hotels do NOT have the toilet paper out just placed on the actual porcelain toilet. NOT COOL. For obvious sanitary reasons. This is done at the bathroom closest to the shows. (near the pool bar)

The good:
- The maids are very sweet. They always said OLA whenever we saw them , so tip them nicely
- Take bread to the beach and throw it in the water and watch little fishies jump to eat them> A European man showed us how to do it (bless his heart not one word of English but he’s adorable)
- Meeting people was cool.
- The Disco : they tried and the music aint half bad
- Manny (like I said) makes the show: he’s very funny and deserves to be promoted in my opinion. He makes the whole entertainment for all ages. He just makes it comfortable with a quirky sense of humour
- Always had water in my room which Is nice. Beds are comfortable.
- The white party on Wednesday was pretty cool this is on the beach. They play music other than reggaethon.
- I wish I could write about the one restaurant we went to 2 lbs lobster and other salad n plantain for 35$ each plate (definitely worth it: so good. And we shared it) 2 person per 35$ plate. BUT I refuse to give them credit as these same people ripped us off for ordering poutine and 3 beers. They charged the same 35$ us (for POUTINE that was makeshift made. So like I said: you make friends with locals and you think it’s great and then they try to hustle you again if you don’t ask upfront what the price is for things. We learned our lesson to always inquire before no MATTER WHAT.

Sadly, when I love a place: I’ll go again and I’ll support as much as I can. I work for the Government which I could have talked to all my collegues here to let them know how wonderful my trip was. BUT UNFORTUNATELY that is not the case. I’ll warn as many people as I can. DO not go to this resort if you are a person of colour or are younger. I work with so many different types of ethnicities and ages and all were so disappointed in this resort from Puerto Plata after I explained the treatment we received. SO to the owners of this resort, Check your people who are employed there if you want to continue to thrive in the hotel business. You just lost 4 people and whomever else I can warn away. Simply: if your staff (females more than males) were just friendlier and if your food was actually edible; your hotel could be so much better. My background is West Indian> you all should know better. **IBEROSTAR I’d suggest as I heard they aren’t as rude to people who look like them** this is also a 5 star. I’d pay 300.00 more for better treatment any day.
Thank you.

Room Tip: stay away from section 20 if you want quiet. print what you pay for (especially if your room is sup...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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
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:
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#9 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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