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“"Never ever will stay there again!!"” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort

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Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   1 Paradise Drive | Cofresi Beach, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic (Formerly Be Live Grand Carey)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 42 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Ridgewood, New York
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“"Never ever will stay there again!!"”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2012

Arrived on 7/29/12 wasn't able to check in till 4:30 pm.... Went by the bar area the lady at the bar was rude...once I was able to check in I was given a room that was more like a motel room... The mini bar was old and rusted.....the bed was dirty with foot prints and orange stains.....the bathroom was old....nothing like they show on the Internet. Went to the reception area to complain.... they have no customer service skills....they act has if they can not speak English....spoke to a man named Jose he said the check back with him in 25 minutes....he did give myself and other family members a different room...but the mini bar was empty the whole stay... I called to complain no one came and I went to the reception area to complain no one came... I checked out and the mini bar was still empty.... We had a leak in the bathroom they actually came within the 3 hrs....

This Hotel main focus is the VIP customers....All customers should be treated with the VIP treatment if you want a returning customer!!!!

Too many steps....

Food:

The food was not great...nothing different samething everyday..
Snack consist of only hotdogs hamburger and fries all day everyday....
Nothing kid friendly....

Pool:

Lots of pools but need more maintence...dirty cups all around the pool area... Tree leafs all in the pool...

They stop giving towels way before the pool closes...Which doesn't make sense.

I really didn't see and life guards either...

Beach:

The worst beach in DR.... It smells...

Drinks:

They have no variety on drinks... Piña colada was nasty and the Tap beer smelled...I gave up on drinks and drank Cola.....



Employees:

Front desk no customer service skills...they rather joke around with each other instead of helping out the customer..

You try calling the front desk you have to let the phone ring about 15 times before they pick up...

You can complain to them all you want and no one will help...

The employees are rude...no people skills...

I checked out on 8/2/12 and will never return or recommend this hotel.....

NYC traveler.....

Room Tip: "Stay Away"
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (600)
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PR
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2012

During nustra stay was a little depressing we were crazy to leave. The service was good but every day it was going light, the air went out by a system of prevention. the TV only worked 2 hours for 1 whole week we stayed. The hotel is all stairs is not suitable for people with any kind of disability were few carts passing the cost of the things you bought in tiendad were high. ofresian the shows and the entertainment team were all that could be used for entertainment options. The equpo entertainment were very good sexy Nephew ETHOD Blakie that amused people with his dancing and comedy. The food was good but many things that did not have much flavor unsalted juices were few and cleanliness in the hotel and the room were very good but the swimming pools were not very clean and the beds that you put people in beach also like hammocks.

  • Stayed July 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Astoria, New York, United States
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2012

My trip to this resort was great...I read all the reviews and was scared to go there but tried it out anyways and really enjoyed my stay there,,,I had a great time and the staff was very helpfull...had a few inconviniences but they were fixed and I enjoyed everything....the guys in the check in/check out desk are very helpful and always answer any question or concerns you have...The entertainment was great...great shows and great staff...Eddie, sexy blackie and sexy bannana were great, they were freindly and always had good activities for everyone....Thanx for the great time

  • Stayed July 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2012

I would like to the experience I had at Lifestyles Resorts in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. The service was awful. The shuttle buses were very slow. It would take an hour for a shuttle to come. The electricity went out a couple of times. The water would shut off during certain times of the day. We walked to the next resort. The shuttle would drive by even if a person tried to flag the shuttle down to stop for them. We requested extra face towels and they brought them the next day. There was no room service at the Crown Suites or the Residence Suites. If a person did not eat before 8pm they would have to wait until after 11pm to get a snack and the only snack was hamburgers, hotdogs and fries. We had to make reservations at 5 restaurants the day we checked in. If you went to dinner and ordered 2 entrees because you wanted to take one back to your room for a snack, the wait staff would look at you like you had a problem. We asked if there was a problem with ordering 2 meals and the wait staff pretended like they didn't understand what was said. The Casablanca Buffet, the birds would nibble on the fruit and the desserts. The Bellini, the breakfast and lunch was awful. The eggs were over cooked and the bacon was either undercooked or over cooked. The food had our stomachs torn up for the entire week and for 7 days after we returned home. One day at breakfast at the Casablanca, one of the timeshare manager's went completely off in front of all the guests on his staff. He informed his staff not to give away any free incentives to any future timeshare investors because if they were at the Holiday Inn, they would not get anything free. So, why should they expect something for free from Lifestyles. This was so unprofessional of the manager. There was only 1 Television in the Residence Suites and that was in the livingroom area. The patio door was too short for the door way. Therefore, the patio door would lock on one side but it was open on the other end of the door because the door did not reach the other side. There were flying bugs (they look like flying ants) all over the inside of our 2 bedroom suite at the Residence Suites. We found bugs in the bed and Bugs in the kitchen light fixture. The pool water was dirty, because when we got out the pool we would go take a shower to get the chlorine off our bodies and our soap turned grey from dirt. The pool at the Residence Suite shallow end was 5'8" deep. There was a swim up bar, but no alcohol on the bar and no bartender. The mattresses were dirty, old and nasty. If you didn't have a V.I.P. wristband on, then the staff disregarded you. V.I.P. wristband people were treated nicely. The shuttle bus would come right away for them. Many people paid $12 - $15 a night for all inclusive, but some people were charges as much as $99 night for all inclusive with their timeshare. If you wanted to upgrade to VIP it was an extra $100 a day. V.I.P. rode scooters and golf carts for transportation. Non-V.I.P. people had to walk or try to ride the shuttle van. The gift shops were over priced. $5.00 for a bag of chips is just too much. When in the states the same bag will cost $2.50. The people outside the resort were much friendlier than the people within the resort. I would NEVER RECOMMEND THIS AS A VACATION SPOT FOR ANYONE NOT EVEN MY WORST EMEMY.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
pa
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2012

I never take the time to write reviews, but felt this is a must so that others do not waste their vacation time and money as we did. We just returned from a week at Cofresi. It was the worst vacation experience we have ever had. They cater to the locals, who come in droves with their large, extended families. The woman who checked in before us had about 30 family members (they do not seem to monitor how many stay in a room). Because of this, we had trouble getting towels and a cot (We requested one because the beds were so bad - we didn't sleep for a week and never did get one). It is a mob scene with long lines where ever you go, and they have no regard for personal space - lots pushing and cutting in line. Food and alcohol were poor. The only escape was to take a beat up shuttle (again long lines and they shove you all in together) to the VIP Beach at a sister resort (which closes at 6p). We also took a cab to the Ponderosa (not the steak chain) a very good Dominican restaurant. Bottom line - cancel now if you can!!!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2012 via mobile

Before going to the resort, I read the reviews. I thought that I would have a terrible time. It was actually ok, but nothing to brag about. We stayed at Cofresi, and I didnt like the fact that my room wasnt ready when I got there at 1:00. My room they gave me smelled like mildew. Everyday my group decided to go to the pool instead of the beach. The staff played games by the pool which were fun. Sexy banana was great at making us feel at home. He was the best!!!The beach was dirty. Once you pass a certain point, you see locals. Make sure you stay within the resort's grounds!!! There isnt much nightlife outside the resort. I was grateful they had shows every night for the guests. Overall, The staff was very friendly. I was told you may have a better experience at Lifestyle.

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Delray Beach, FL
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2012

Despite traveling several times a year and working for a hotel myself, I have never sat down and taken the time to write a review of a hotel before. However, our experience was so bad that I felt the need to write one to possibly prevent what happened to me and my husband from happening to anyone else. After coming back from a vacation to this resort and reading the positive reviews, I feel like most of these must be fake reviews written by the hotel’s staff. Although there were a few good aspects of our trip, the majority of it was so horrible it was almost funny.

The room and furnishings were pretty nice, but the beds are terrible. The bed in our first room was very old and sunken in. After a terrible night’s sleep we were moved to another room. This bed was also old and broken, but they had shoved a piece of plywood under the mattress to make it firm. It was basically like sleeping on the floor.

The AC units at the hotel work on motion sensors. If you are standing in front of the unit or moving around the bedroom, the AC works. If you are lying in bed or in the bathroom, the AC shuts off. You can imagine how hot the rooms get at night. Between that and the mattress, my husband and I got almost no sleep. At one point in the week, we started taking turns moving around in front of the sensor so the other could sleep for a bit in the AC. We complained to the front desk and even had a maintenance worker come check on it, but they said “It’s not broken, that’s just how it works.”

I have traveled to many different countries in the Caribbean and South/Central America and never had such horrible food before. Besides the 3 restaurant reservations you are granted upon arrival, for the rest of the meals you have to eat at the buffet. If you pay an insane amount of money like we did and get VIP bracelets, you can also order snacks at the VIP bar at The Tropical, which is Cofresi’s (slightly nicer) sister hotel. I am not a picky eater by any means but my husband and I could find almost nothing remotely appetizing at the buffet to eat, and what we did eat gave us food poisoning several times throughout our trip.

Everything, from food to beverages is lukewarm. Although lukewarm OJ (actually powdered drink mix that tasted like Tang) and warm beer will not make you sick, food held at a temperature under 165 degrees is very dangerous! My husband is the executive chef at a restaurant and he was shocked by the disgusting conditions of the buffet and how the staff followed almost no food safety precautions at all. We were very cautious and ate mostly bread, French fries, and fruit throughout the trip, but still got sick many times. When I was brave and tasted anything else, it was terrible. Even their “restaurant” food was pretty bad. Keep in mind that we had to pay a mandatory $56 per person PER DAY for their mandatory “all inclusive food and beverage plan.” The best meal we ate throughout the entire trip was the free lunch buffet at Ocean World, the local aquarium. My husband and I lost so much weight from the horrible food and getting sick during our trip that we were both 2 clothing sizes smaller when we got home. I guess that’s one positive from this experience.

One of the very worst parts of this trip was the fact that the hotel was extremely overcrowded on the weekends. They give rock bottom cheap deals to the locals in the summer to fill up the hotel. I can speak Spanish and enjoy meeting local people throughout my travels, so I had no problem with 90% of the guests being Dominican. I did have a problem with the fact that there were no open chairs by the pool at any time during the day, it took 45 minutes of being jostled around a packed bar (more than half of the pool bars were closed the entire week) to get a drink, and there was nowhere to sit at the buffet restaurant. It was like trying to get a table at the mall food court the week before Christmas. We split up and hovered around holding our plates, trying to find a group that looked like they were finished eating. As they got up one of us would swoop in, sometimes losing the table to someone quicker. Once we sat down at our dirty table with no clean napkins or silverware to use, occasionally someone would come by to clear it but usually not.

One of the final issues we had with this hotel was the way that they handled my husband’s injury the first day. After check in we went to the pool. There were no chairs available so we decided to go in the water and wait for a chair to open. An hour later, we spotted open chairs, so we went to the towel hut to trade in our towel tickets. The staff member told us that because it was 6:05 and the pool closes at 7, we could not have towels. We were standing there dripping wet while I offered him a generous tip and tried to explain to him in Spanish that our room was very far away and we really needed a towel. He was very rude and said it was not possible. We tried to air dry a bit, and then walked up to the lobby to ask them for assistance. Because we were still wet, my poor husband slipped and fell hard on the floor, dislocating his knee. We complained to the front desk and got no apology, they did not even offer to drive him back to our room in one of their golf carts. We had to make a very slow, painful, and long journey back to our room. The rest of the trip was extremely hard for him, because there is a lot of walking and stairs involved when moving throughout the mountainous property.

Last but not least, our experience with the timeshare sales team was horrific. Our first two days, we were constantly followed in a golf cart and pestered by a man named Winston who wanted to give us a tour of the property. It is a very large property and we were interested in seeing everything, but we wanted to get settled in first especially after my husband’s injury. I also got food poisoning the first night and was throwing up all day the next day and he still wouldn’t leave us alone. He would follow us in the golf cart, find us near the pool, and call our room. Finally we agreed to the tour. He took us right to a sales building (without any tour) and when we told him we weren’t interested in buying a timeshare or wasting time on our honeymoon with a sales pitch, he got angry. He told us he needed the $10 he gets for bringing people inside. After we kept saying no, he said he could get fired if we didn’t go inside and listen to the sales pitch. We continued to say no and said we would walk back to our room. The sales office was very far from our room, so he drove us back. I have never seen a golf cart go so fast! I was really afraid I would fall out. The rest of the week, we watched him stalk unsuspecting people to take on his “tour.”

The only highlight of the trip was the VIP bar at The Tropical. We tipped the bartenders well and in return we got excellent service. They remembered what we liked to drink and were always smiling and friendly. This is the only place where you can get name brand (not bottom shelf) alcohol. Food took an hour each time we ordered it and tasted pretty bad, but that wasn’t their fault. They are a great group of guys. If it wasn’t for that little oasis, the whole trip would have been a “zero star” experience. The excursions we went on to Ocean World and the Cable Car/City Tour were also great. I’m not including them in the rating of the hotel, since the hotel was not responsible for those good experiences. The hotel was only responsible for very bad experiences.

My advice to you is DO NOT BOOK THIS HOTEL! If you have already booked or decide to go anyway, here are a few tips.
1) Bring a lot of tip money. When the bar is packed, flashing a $5 bill might get you that drink in 10 mins instead of 45.
2) Bring your own snacks, order pizza, and go out to eat often. If you do eat the food there, eat only cold food or food that is piping hot. Also bring plenty of stomach medication.
3) Take your excursions on the weekends to avoid the crowds.
4) Do not go to the “VIP” party on Sunday. Just trust me on that one.
5) Whatever you do, DO NOT get into one of the salesmen’s golf carts.
6) Buy a VIP bracelet so you can go to the VIP bar.
7) Good luck, and don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Room Tip: Choose a room at a different hotel
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Jenny H, Guest Relations Manager at Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort, responded to this review, August 2, 2012
Dear Guest Tara B:

We regret the fact than you left unhappy. We are in the business to bring an enjoyable, unforgettable experience to all of our guests. We accomplish this 99% of the time. The few times that we do encounter an unhappy guest we address the issue immediately and turn the challenge into an opportunity. We would like to extend our most sincere apologies for any difficulty you may have experienced during your stay. We appreciate the observations concerning the service at the hotel, and we are sorry that we were not able to impress you with some of our services and amenities at the resort.

We must say that the level of satisfaction obtained concerning the quality and variety of food and drinks has always been very elevated according to the opinions reflected in our satisfaction questionnaires. Besides, the selection of products that compose our gastronomically supply is done taking into consideration the diversity of the guests who visit us. We sincerely regret that the quality of the food and beverages offered in our Hotel have not met your expectations after all.

As you might know, all major Tour Operators promoting Puerto Plata, require that we go by specifics hygiene and food handling standards. In order to audit those standards on a regular basis, we have hired an outsource company called Preverisk, a UK based company, Preverisk is used by most hotel chains and tour operators doing business in the Dominican Republic, Europe, US as well as Canada which all have access to the results of such audits. Those records do not show any significant deficiencies that would indicate a risk to our guests’ welfare.

The hotel has a very modern feel and a diversity of pools to go, which are clean and inviting, with plenty of lounge chairs everywhere, as well you can enjoy the Cofresi Palm hotel facilities, in my opinion with all the different areas and activities and things to do it felt like there is never overcrowded.

The Sunday party is something that people never forget as there are performers, fireworks, food and amazing entertainment

The same way, we appreciate your observations which are treated with the utmost interest since we believe that this is the best way to know what specific points we must focus our attention to improve in all aspects. We do hope to welcome you in the near future, we guarantee you that our visitors receive the quality service they deserve and our company is recognized for.

Sincerely

Jenny Hernández
E-Commerce Concierge
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort

Address: 1 Paradise Drive | Cofresi Beach, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic (Formerly Be Live Grand Carey)
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 Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 468
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort – Dominican Republic is the newest jewel in the Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Club. Nestled along the Cofresi beach shores, and overlooking the sparkling Caribbean sea, this resort caters to the luxurious enjoyment of both families and couples looking for that perfect getaway. With 468 well-appointed accommodations that range from Adult Only Spa Suites, to Standard family friendly rooms located in a quite setting between the ocean beach and spectacular pool, this is a paradise worthy of the Lifestyle name. The resort was created with space and comfort in mind, making Cofresi Palm a relaxing, enjoyable and satisfying experience for all guests and their families. All rooms have air conditioning, cable television, phones, and ceiling fans, while the decor has a distinctive design, featuring dark wood furnishings. Shaded patios and verandas provide a relaxing place to gather in some of the units. Providing both service and features that are standard for a Lifestyle property, the Cofresi Palm offers a unique luxury accommodations experience. Cofresi Palm provides the easy, relaxed ambiance of the Caribbean in an opulent and elegant setting. Experience the array of beauty and excitement that Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort has to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sun Village Puerto Plata
Sun Village Hotel Cofresi
Dominican Republic Sun Village
Sun Village Dominican Republic
Sun Village Spa
Sun Village Resort Dominican Republic
Sun Village Resort Puerto Plata
Sun Village Beach Resort
Sun Village Resort Spa Puerto Plata

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