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“Pool, Restaurant and Property Staff” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sanctuary Cap Cana

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Sanctuary Cap Cana
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Boulevard Zona hotelera, Playa Juanillo, Punta Cana 0809, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #32 of 99 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Woodridge, Illinois
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Pool, Restaurant and Property Staff”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

The Pool Staff were excellent and very friendly and always greeted you with a smile: Junior, Menor and Martha.

The Restaurant Staff were very efficient and friendly: Diomeri and Jose Luis. Eat at the Blue Marlin Restaurant and have Chef Antonio prepare you the Camarones al Estilo Dominicano!

The Property Staff made the property look beautiful: Edward, Kelvin, Victor, Gergoria, Melania and all the gardeners.

Juan Bautista is a manager at the restaurants and is extremely efficient and makes sure your restaurant experience is incredible. I never seen a restaurant manager in the U.S.A work as hard as this man.

  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 16, 2013
I would like to thank you for your positive comments regarding your recent stay at Sanctuary Cap Cana.

I am very pleased to read your appraisal of our team, services and facilities and I know that Juan Bautista will be equally pleased to learn of your kind remarks and recognition of his efforts to meet your needs.

Please tell your friends about our hotel. We certainly look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
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2,226 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (648)
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NYC
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

I've been to DR plenty of times. By far the nicest hotel in DR i have stayed at. I've stayed at the Reserve, Iberostar, etc. I have yet to go to Iberostar Grand but Sanctuary was beautiful. The positives: 10 minutes from the airport, 5 minutes from the top golf course in the carribean (its amazing you have to go), safe and secure area in Cap Cana (the ritziest area in DR). The room i had was. I stayed in a suite, the first time i had 2 levels and my own pool in my room. The villas are amazing as well.
Negatives: New management just came in so you'll expect the service to lag a bit as they work out the kinks but i expect that to improve. The water at the beach is a bit cloudy from the sand that gets drawn up. I've been to nicer beaches in DR. The pools were very nice. Gym was nice as well. Its a large resort. Next door is a public beach wich "public" in cap cana means people with money will be there so its not scary.
Would i go back? Sure. Its a very pretty resort. I just prefer others beachs that i've seen on the island. If you want, take an excursion through the hotel.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
    • 3 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.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 16, 2013
I would like to thank you for your positive comments regarding your recent stay at Sanctuary Cap Cana.

We feel proud and grateful for your compliments on the efforts and dedication demonstrated by our staff.

At Sanctuary Cap Cana it is our pleasure to service our guest with the finest hospitality. We want to guarantee a vacation that will be unforgettable.

Please tell your friends about our hotel. We certainly look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
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2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

This resort is absolutely gorgeous. Beautiful
landscape and upkeep of buildings. Restaurants were nice and clean with delicious food. All staff from front desk to housekeeping were very accommodating. I was treated like a queen.Juanillo beach adjacent to resort is a must see. This resort is a diamond in the rough. You won't regret visiting. All smiles here. Ready to go back next year.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 16, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback about your recent stay at Sanctuary Cap Cana.

We are grateful for your kind comments about our property and our staff. We are delighted to learn that you had such a pleasant vacation with us, and that our hard working staff served you with excellence.

It would be our honor to receive your visit in the near future, and help you experience another memorable vacation.
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Buffalo, New York
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2013

It was my intention to provide a full review of SCC as details about the resort were a bit vague. Trip Advisor reviews were a huge help for my visiting SCC - I hope I can do the same for someone else...

Arrival: If you walk into customs and are disheartened by a long line, don’t worry – it went quicker than I expected. In the first line, the DR collects $10/person and gives a receipt. In the second line, they take a portion of the receipt, and then you finally meet with customs (which took about 30 seconds). TIP – keep handy your baggage claim tickets you are given when checking in at your airport of origin. An agent compares them to your bags to make sure people aren’t walking away with your things (as the customs line took about 20 minutes, and your checked bags are sitting around in the meantime.

Transportation to SCC: easy to get a cab, and the resort is about 10 minutes from the airport.

Front Desk/Check In: We travelled with another couple. At check in, they had our rooms booked at both ends of the earth. As several other people mentioned, they worked with the staff to adjust rooms. We did the same and in a manner of 15 minutes, we had adjoining rooms. Call ahead if you’re looking for something similar. Although it was booked as one reservation, the resort did not take this into account. Otherwise, the desk staff was great. Lime or cucumber flavored water and a cocktail await when you check in, and they have incense burning to create a relaxed atmosphere. TIP: bring small bills – the front desk cannot always accommodate making change. If you’re going to tip the staff, good for you, they deserved it - 1’s and 5’s are ideal. If you’re all inclusive and too cheap to reward hard work by people in a poorer country, you’ve got issues beyond the scope of this review…

Rooms (pros): We stayed in a junior suite (3034-3037) near the steakhouse. The upstairs has a great ocean view (highly recommended). The bathroom was large (separate shower/tub), the bed was very comfortable, and I am relieved to report no material problems. They provide a safe and enough closet space for two. I was very happy with the condition of the room considering some of the reviews.

Rooms (cons): I share the sentiment of others; the rooms could use a few dollars in renovations. The coffee table was chipped and bubbled, and the floors were not smooth in some spots. I honestly didn’t care; if the rooms were top notch, I’d have to pay top notch money. TIP: watch the shower – sometimes the water temperature can vacillate quickly. If you are sunburnt, prepare to duck and weave like Ali...

Housekeeping: Ugh. They cleaned the rooms just fine, but forget about restocking the fridge. If you’re low on drinks, call room service (even the front desk struck out when we asked them to refill). Room service tended to show up at 6-8pm, a rough time when you’re getting ready for dinner.

Maintenance: One of our balcony chairs broke. I told the front desk, and a worker was there in 10 minutes. He placed a new screw or two in the chair, and flew out of there like he had to catch a plane. He failed to notice a key piece of wood that was cracked. We didn’t use the chair again. TIP: if you need maintenance, don’t let them go until they have truly fixed the problem.

Pool/Beach Area: Great (with 1 big exception). Cory-Santana (who I assume will comment on this review), give my thanks to Carlos, Bernardo, Eddy, and Martha for their friendly and fantastic service. There was chair availability and plenty of other room around the pool area. The pool bar is a big plus, and it’s where I spent the majority of my time. There were a few kids every now and then, but a filthy look in their direction got them moving along. Oh – Cory? Have them replace the white queen on the beach chess set; it’s almost broken and bothered me to no end.

Exception: When asked about the price of 2 t-shirts, a vendor said the price for both was…wait for it…$100 USD. He and I would have had a problem, but my working knowledge of the DR criminal justice system prevented the instigation of any unpleasantries. TIP: The vendors are awful. Shop off the resort if you can. Also, if you claim to have no money on you, they’ll simply say “take it now and pay me later”. It’s high pressure sales, and not what I want when I’m in the pool area. If you must buy from them, they’ll come down in price – they did every time. Just don’t expect a great deal.

Food: The food was decent. Here’s a breakdown of the restaurants. Not all of them are open every day. There are many places to check the schedule. Other reviewers have complained about this, but simply plan ahead – it was no big deal…

Capriccio: Italian themed. My least favorite. The chicken cattciatore was fine, but nothing jumped off the menu. The pasta with crushed red pepper had a nice zip to it, but you’ll get better selection and quality at Olive Garden. Someone else mentioned scrapping the Italian theme for something Dominican – good idea.

Steakhouse: Nice place, good atmosphere. Food was ok. I wasn’t a fan of the filet. Stick with the ribeye, and make sure you get the chocolate cake dessert with ice cream – a must. TIP: they have limited seating for 6+ people. If the seats are taken, you wait. Make a reservation if you’re in a group.

Blue Marlin: I attended the seafood buffet night. They had a large selection (as well as non-seafood items). The food was good and the atmosphere is great (open air over the water). I should note that I went once for lunch, and the service was the slowest of all the restaurants – be prepared. Also, the restrooms are located outside the building (about a 30 second walk), as the Marlin is near/over the water.

The Wok: I had dinner outside. The servers will provide bug spray if needed (I didn’t have a problem). The atmosphere was nice, and the food was good. TIP: call ahead if you would like to sit at the hibachi table.

Casa Bella: CB is the spot where the breakfast and lunch buffets are served. Opt for the omelet station instead of the scrambled eggs. The selection of items is decent, and the food is ok. I’m not looking for gourmet stuff until dinner anyway, so this worked fine.

There was no strict dress code for the restaurants (golf shorts were fine). Other sources note that long pants are required for men, but it was not the case. Shoes and shirts are necessary if you enter a building serving food, but nothing resembling a formal night on a cruise ship.

Room Service: I ordered room service once. They quoted me 40 minutes, but the food arrived in 70. It was worth the wait, as the food they delivered was accurate, larger portioned, and very good. TIP: don’t over order. There’s nowhere to put a lot of leftovers, and food left out will attract pests (tiny ants in my case).

Spa: The spa offered a deal where they added 20 minutes to a massage, so I took the dive. The deep tissue massage was not worth the higher price tag. However, the facility itself was very nice. You can spend $20 and have access to the facility for the day which includes a quiet pool area, hot tubs, steam room and sauna. The seating area is in the shade, so if you overdue it (sun or booze), it’s a nice tranquil place to hide out if you need privacy.

Miscellaneous Tips:

• Pack aspirin, Imodium, sunscreen, any anything else that you know might cost you a fortune to buy in a foreign country. You’ll be glad you did.
• Although my weather was great, do take care if it is wet. The outdoor areas are indeed slippery.
• Tipping the staff is a help. Tip well early and you’ll have their attention all week.
• If you’re having trouble finding gifts, wait until you leave. The portion of the airport dedicated to departures is much more modern, and there are plenty of stores with a better selection (another reason to ignore the resort vendors).
• Try mamajuana once (an wood infused alcoholic drink), just to say you did.
• The language barrier for servers, bartenders, and other client facing staff should not be a concern. Housekeeping and maintenance staff are tougher to communicate with.
• I know this matters to a lot of people, so I’ll share – every public/restaurant bathroom I used was very clean. SCC took the time to attend to this, and it was a welcome surprise.

Conclusion:

I looked around at different places in the DR and chose SCC based on the strength of the reviews. It was my first time to PC, and I was pleasantly surprised. This is a “third world” country, and although one would have no problem nitpicking, I am happy with my experience at SCC. If I were to return, I’d be waiting for the staff to cheer “welcome home”. SCC is a nice place for first time DR vacationers, and the recent change in management leads me to believe that there is nowhere to go but up…

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 13, 2013
Thank you for sharing your comments about your recent stay at Sanctuary Cap Cana. It is my pleasure to respond to every guest that takes the time to give us their valued feedback about our property and services.

We will be sending your recommendations to all the departments involved as we are trying day in and day out to improve our guest experiences. We are pleased that our staff was able to help you and provide you with their excellent service. I will gladly personally thanks on your behalf to Carlos, Bernardo, Eddy and Margarita at your request.

I am also following up inmediately on the replacement of the beach chess set, Thank you for the note!

We truely hope you can visit us soon, and tell your friends about our hotel.

It will be our pleasure to service you again.
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1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2013

Amazing vew from the Imperial suite, excelent food and lovely people!! At the pool aleays ask for the waitress Margarita, she is the best! also have a talk with "el menor" he is an amazong person!! We had a winderful time! definitely going back!

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 12, 2013
Thank you for choosing Sanctuary Cap Cana for such a special occasion. We appreciate you taking the time to share your wonderful experience online.

We are delighted to know that our scenery and service created a wonderful setting for your second honeymoon. Our staff is thrilled to know they contributed for such a memorable experience.

We certainly will be expecting you back in the near future.
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Boston, Massachusetts
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2013

I would personally like to thank all of the Sancurary staff for the amazing job they put in front of me and my wife for my week spent in the resort. Honestly the best service i have ever encountered!

I do not know where anyone comes off that any of this marvolus staff can come off wrong, where if there is a wrong they will figure out how to make it right. Whether it is food, travel, room service, accomidations they have a well oiled machine that is fueled and ready to run for anyone that jumps on the Sancuary train.

I would personally like to thank Claudia from reservations for making my booking process feel like microwaving a bag of popcorn. The receptionist/Conciege (Alexander/Marlenis) team for making my arrival and staying arrangments spectacular. They answered all my questions as i had over 100+ and were so patient and willing to give more. Danny Batista from the Sancuary Excursions was excellent to work with and will definitley direct you to the best adventure that suits your pleasures. The wait staff is something from another world, if you want to really feel the warmth of the country from the inside, wait till you get a load of this sancuary waiting staff, Thank you!

Rooms were great and they have all types of options for anyone looking for the right space. Cleansiness was perfect as everytime i came back to my room from the pool/beach it was always back to where it was when i first arrived.

I would strongly recommend to experience all of the restaurants as Sancuary does a great job to not only bring you the dominican culture, but also bring a variety of other cultures so that no matter where you come from you can feel right at home.

Hope this helps your decision, if it doesnt, i will make sure i write again on how my next experience is when i go again, CAN"T WAIT!

SEE YOU SOON SANCUARY! ADIOS PUNTA CANA!

Room Tip: If you are looking for something more private and romatic utilize the villas or bungalos! if not...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 12, 2013
On behalf of the Sanctuary Cap Cana Staff, we want to thank you for your kind remarks about our property and staff.

It is with great pleasure and honor that we service each of our guests to make their experience out of the ordinary. We are delighted that our staff and all the effort they put in were able to a memorable vacation for you.

We will share your positive feedback with the entire team especially to Claudia, Marlenis, Alexander, and Danny B. It is because of you, our valued guests, that we are driven to work with enthusiasm and warmth.

We certainly will be ready to welcome you back in the near future.
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New York, NY
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2013

Overall, a beautiful place, with really amazing staff. Would likely stay here again for the right price (but not full price).

Staff- the enternainment team (Menor, Daniel), bartenders, wait staff, all go out of their way to make you feel welcome. Your wish really is their command. That being said, the reception area/room service staff were not very friendly- not necessariliy rude, but standoffish- not the level of service you receive from others at the hotel.

Beach- albeit a little small, it is beautiful and well cared for. Twice a day, you see the staff cleaning the area. The pools are also beautiful, although the smaller ones did not seem as well cared for as the main pool.

Food- pretty good, good variety for breakfast and lunch. Pool bar options also pretty good. Dinner was hit or miss depending on what was open (generally two restaurants a night are open).. the steakhouse and italian restaurant were probably the best of the bunch. Room service is a great option as well.

Grounds/rooms- beautiful, well-maintained/manicured. The rooms are also amazing, with spectacular views. The upholstery needs some updating- sometimes musty and slightly stained- just not quite up to 5-star. Also, the plumbing needs some work (toilet would catch sometimes and sometimes the drains would give off that weird sewer smell)

Quirks: if it's an all-inclusive, why are we signing for every meal/drink? they often had vendors come in and sell souvenirs/cigars, which would be a nice option, but some of the vendors were pushy to the point of we would walk a different route to avoid them.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cory-Santana, General Manager at Sanctuary Cap Cana, responded to this review, March 11, 2013
We are glad you enjoyed your recent stay at Sanctuary Cap Cana, and we thank you for sharing your experience online.

Welcoming our guest’s home drives us to serve with the finest hospitality and warmth. It is our pleasure to welcome our guests with such enthusiasm and care in order to create memorable moments. We will share with our staff your remarks, especially with El Menor and Daniel.

We will take into consideration your feedback, it is our mission to improve everyday and exceed our valued guest’s expectations.

Thank you for your visit. We hope to host another vacation for you in the near future.
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Additional Information about Sanctuary Cap Cana

Address: Boulevard Zona hotelera, Playa Juanillo, Punta Cana 0809, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#23 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#26 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#29 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sanctuary Cap Cana 5*
Number of rooms: 176
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Its inspired design combines the charm of a Spanish colonial village with the laid-back sensuality of the Caribbean and the stylish sophistication of streamlined, modern design accents. Bougainvillea-lined pathways lead guests through the resort grounds to 176 expansive, private suites housed in replicas of a tower, colonial buildings and fortress. Within the resort are 5 exceptional restaurants, 5 bars, an elegant casino, a half-mile private beach with sugar-white sand, and meeting space for up to 500 guests, while just minutes away lie all the world-class recreational appeals of Cap Cana. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sanctuary Cap Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Sanctuary Cap Cana Resort

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