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“A great very first experience in the DR” 4 of 5 stars
Review of VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort

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VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Dorada | PO Box 22, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 41 hotels in Puerto Plata
Burlington, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“A great very first experience in the DR”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We went to the Gran Ventana from 22 Feb 2013 to 1st March 2013. This was the first time we had ever visited the Dominican Republic. The resort is not huge which makes getting around very easy. The only drawback was the very loud music played at the main pool but we ended up more at the quiet pool. Our room was on the 3rd floor with a partial view of the beach. The fully stocked fridge is not fully stocked and perhaps more drinking water could be left in the fridges in the rooms. The a la carte restaurants were fantastic. Overall we had no real complaints, we had an awesome week at a great resort with friendly, helpful staff and will certainly return.

Room Tip: Higher floors have raised ceilings which make the room seem more spacious.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 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 4
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
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (533)
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English first
Portage la Prairie, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

Recently returned from our 2 week vacation @ VHGV (Feb/4 - Feb/18) departed from Winnipeg Via Airtransat, My wife and I are in our 50's and travel yearly. This year we were part of a group of 10 (see John G's Post). I think John was very accurate with his assessment of VHGV.

Overall - We had a fantastic fun time, Traveling as a group certainly made the trip better, however I think we would have had a slightly lesser opinion if we were traveling as 2, I personally prefer newer and larger, but hard to find in Puerto Plata.

Departure / Check in - We traveled Airtransat out of Winnipeg Club Class for us this was well worth the additional $$$. We arrived in D .R. customs was fast and friendly (watch out for the luggage grabbers) people who will I D themselves as a Airtransat rep. then attempt to walk your bags 25 feet for a tip, Just say no.The bus trip to our resort was about 20 min. and check in maybe 40 min. all good by me front desk staff friendly and speak English very well. A safe is $16 per week worth the security.

Friends - As I stated were traveling as a group of 10. This was a first for us & something I hope to do regularly. This frees people to do things they may not do if they are alone IE: deep sea fishing, everyone has a great scene of humor got along the whole time. My heart felt thanks to everyone in our group.

Rooms / Resort - The resort is older and dated though still in good condition thanks to the endless work of staff. 2 pools, bars 4 opened at various times, 3 a la carte's, 1-2 buffet & one snack shack at the beach, plenty of chairs and loungers @ the beach & pools. never any problem getting a chair, no need to put towels out early. Maid service was very good (Rm.1234 was cleaned before 10 a.m daily, it's where they start each day) We left tip$,toys & chocolate every day (remember to leave a note if you leave gifts otherwise the maid service can't keep anything) towel art only twice in 2 weeks. beer, pop & water in the mini fridge daily. No coffee maker in the rooms unless you upgrade to a suite however about 7:30 you can get a coffee just outside the buffet 1/2 hour before it opens.

Animation team: OK but less than I've experienced in most other trips. Evening shows disappointing but who cares I didn't come here for that and usually can't stay awake that long.

Food - Breakfast: very good variety with an omelette / egg station a must try.
Lunch: main buffet was good but the same each day as was the beach snack shack but between the 2 you still have lots to choose from (hint: try the wings & pizza @ the beach snack shack)
Dinner: buffet very similar each day other than the carvery stations but still better than many other places I've been to. A la Carte: All 3 were good not great, but good. I liked the Italian the best. would like to see an Asian (cook at the table) a la carte added.

Airtransat Rep - Jenifer did a great job to assist me with some issues that needed attention, Thank you Jenifer. She also helped other people who were stormed stayed & abandoned (from Air Canada) something to think about when booking your next trip.
Excursions: Did monkey jungle tour (Zip line) 5 star, City tour & cable car 4 star, Deep sea fishing 4 star & catamaran 3.5 star. all booked from James in the plaza at a reasonable discount (Sorry Jenifer). Just to mention we required certain needs that you can only get by booking someone who can arrange for private transportation, your travel Rep is restricted in this way. You can get a massage on the beach for a reasonable price.

Wifi slow but free in the lobby & a few $ in your room per day.

Beach venders: plenty, but no problem if you say no. I did see a group of people who looked at almost every bodies goods then complained that they were been bothered all the time??? think it through people.

Plaza: 5 min. walk good way to kill a few hours and pick up your gifts for the people you left behind (hint shop upstairs for the best price), ATM machines and money exchange available.

I would not return to this resort mostly because I like to try different places. I had a very good vacation here with some great people.

If I can help you with some information please contact me, sorry for being long winded
Regards Grant

Room Tip: if you want/need a quite room send a e-mail request about 10 days before you depart
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
JBohmann, Public Relations Manager at VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a detailed review of your recent visit to Gran Ventana. We are delighted to read that you enjoyed your stay with our hotel and that you had such wonderful experiences. I am sure your recommendations and tips will come in very helpful to future visitors. We look forward to your next visit.
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Codogne, Italy
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2013

We were taken by crowded bus to our resort, arriving at 2:30. Check-in was fairly quick and english was not a problem. The room is large, has AC with a ceiling fan which we can control the speeds of. No temperature readouts though. The room stayed cool at night. We had a problem with the toilet tank leaking which took 2 days to get fixed. The king size mattress was uncomfortable for my wife who has back problems. The bar fridge contained drinking water, beer and pop which were replenished when needed. Carry a lot of American 1$$ as you are tipping the maids, porters,buffet and servers etc. during your stay. The buffet food was good and the a la carte food was even better(reserve as soon as you get there). The nightly entertainment was so and so. Get used to street and beach vendors bugging you. If you can, get to see the countryside as it was an experience you will not forget as there are towns, peoples and scenery not seen in the city or resort. The beach was very clean, shaded but gets crowded by ~ 10-11am. Unfortunately strong winds come off the ocean and there was a current across the beach so if you're not a strong swimmer be careful. The staff was friendly, helpful and service very good. Great place to meet other Canadians as well as foreigners.

Room Tip: We were at the Beata building on the second floor(facing the pool)which is away from the main area...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Montreal
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2013

We were at the Gran Ventana from Feb 16-23rd, 2013. We were 3 couples, aged 25-54.As stated by others there is not the WOW factor when you arrive. Having said that, the week was great, we found lots to do. There is table tennis, pool, bikes, kayaks....etc., all included. As we were up fairly early in the morning the late night scene was not what we were looking for....we can do that at home any time of the year. The beach, the sun, the pool, the food, the drinks, the family time was our goal. None of us had any problems with the food, in fact, we all thought that the buffet was plentiful and tasty (and we all have been to many different resorts, in other countries) We did the city tour outing which was 1/2 day - Rum factory, cigar factory, Amber museum and factory, city center, and Cable car to the top of the mountain. The vendors on the beach are there everyday, this is their livlihood. We found that a pleasant "no thank you" was fine. If you are consciderate to them, they are too you. I did not see them interupt anyone from what they were doing. They did call out what they were selling. Our only suggestion would be to have some music playing around the pool area - but NOT blaring so you can't have a conversation, but just a little music. Our room was a king bedroom (rm 1135, ground floor) Relax and enjoy. Cleaned spotless everyday. We had a restful happy week.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2013

I went to this resort for a week 17/02/13- 24/02/13 with my boyfriend and his sister.
Our experience was pretty average at this resort. There was some good and some bad. First off, for snorkeling it was amazing, there is a nice reef right in front of the hotel where we saw many fish, squid, eels and starfish. The activity we did was really fun as well, we did a Dune buggy ride in the surroundings and there was not one inch of us that wasn't covered in mud when we got back.The beach was gorgeous, clean with almost white sand. Our room was right by the beach, like a 20 second walk so that was amazing. For the bad, well there are technically only two pools, one that is for everyone and the quiet pool that we never went to. When we arrived at the resort there was no food available (at 10 pm) and had to wait t'ill 11:30 pm for a little hot dog stand to open. The bars are not all open throughout the day, they alternate which led to line ups at the open ones. There is also no real bar open after 12 am, only the little hot dog stand serving beer and rum. The booze at this resort tastes awful ! We ended up drinking virgin drinks towards the end of our trip.
The food at the buffet wasn't that good either, I didn't go there for the food obviously, but thought i'd mention it.

So for the beach and the snorkeling it was awesome but if you want to stay by the pool I do not recommend it. I do not recommend this resort for young people looking to party because there is no night life at this resort, we had to leave the hotel for a party.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pembroke, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

We stayed at the Vh Gran Ventana for the week of February 11-18th. This resort is small but has big pluses. The food is wonderful. The whole week we didn't have ANY complaints about the food. They have 3 restaurants and we liked them all. Even the buffet had lots to offer and a good variety every day. Hats off to the chefs! The beach is clean and the water was clear and we didn't need our water shoes when swimming. We reserved a junior suite and I don't think that we would spend the extra money on one again (only because we spent such little time in the room). I have to say that it was the smallest junior suite that we have ever stayed in. We had to pay $16.00 for a safe rental ( worth it for peace of mind) but I think that the resort should include this in their price. After all it is suppose to be ALL inclusive. The staff was professional and friendly and there was always a cleaning crew present where ever you went. I have severe contact allergies and the gal at the front desk ( I forget her name.... ) went out of her way to make sure that I was not in contact with any of the things that I am allergic to. Hats off to her too! It made my stay very safe and comfortable. We would definitely consider this resort again, if we return to the Dominican Republic.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Saona building ( apparently and older building) in room1123. It was a junior suite...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Bathurst, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Nice looking resort but food was bad at the buffet, couldn't get any "a la carte" reservation all week, service wasn't that good, had to ask three or four servers for a glass of wine with supper and never got it, rooms were small and not well kept. Only good things was the weather and desserts

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
JBohmann, Public Relations Manager at VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Thank you for posting your review from your recent visit. We are so sorry to hear that you did not thoroughly enjoy your recent visit to Gran Ventana. Reservations for the a la carte restaurants can only be made in the mornings, we do apologize that you were unable to dine with us there. We do hope you might consider giving Gran Ventana another try in the future. Kind Regards,
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Additional Information about VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort

Address: Playa Dorada | PO Box 22, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#4 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Plata
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort 3.5*
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Also Known As:
Gran Ventana Beach Hotel
Gran Ventana Dominican Republic
Gran Ventana Puerto Plata
Gran Ventana Beach Resort Puerto Plata
Hotel Gran Ventana Beach
Grand Ventana Beach Resort
Gran Ventana Hotel Dominican Republic

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