My husband and I stayed at Sanctuary Cap Cana or our honeymoon in July 2014. We chose Sanctuary because of the reviews we read here on Trip Advisor and the beautiful pictures we saw online.
The flight from Miami was quick and easy, we arrive in Punta Cana in less than two hours. The airport in Punta Cana was outdoor with a thatched roof and has a nice charm. You immediately felt like you were in the tropics and on vacation. You have to go through immigration and pay the $10 tax, then you get your bags and go through customs. We were stopped at customs and grabbed a cab right out front. $30 and twenty minutes later we were at the resort. Heads up, the airport loses its charm when you leave...you have to go through immigration again! Which took almost an hour in a super long line of grumpy, hot travelers. The airport has no air conditioning, again thatched roof. We thankfully got there early so the wait didn't affect us. You have to walk through all the stores before you get to your gates. About half of the gates are in a semi air conditioned area but not enough chairs for everyone. When you go through the gate you have to wait outside for a bus to take you to the plane. I have never been happier to board a plane then when we were leaving Punta Cana.
We booked the Monarch Ocean Front Villa because we wanted something a little private and romantic. The resort's website does not have that many pictures of each individual suite, if they had we would have booked something different. We checked into our room around 3 and there was two men from maintenance trying to repair the exterior door off the bedroom. They left and we tried to open the door so we could use the back porch and it fell right off the hinges. They came back and worked on it for another hour and it barely hung on so we just didn't use it. Room was updated and beautiful, bathroom and shower very modern and tropical. The view was lackluster though. We could see the ocean but people were walking by our porch and lawn workers were right outside as well. Not as private or close to the water as we had hoped.
The second day we went to the Front Desk and asked to see alternative rooms. We chose to move to the King and Queen Honeymoon Villa which was so much nicer. We had almost double the amount of square footage and a massive deck right on the water which was amazing. We did not need all the extra room but it was a nice plus. The villa has a thatched roof so it stays a little warmer than a normal hotel room would but it was fine. The bathroom is outdoor and one morning we were greeted by a crab! Made us laugh. We scooped him in a trash can and put him outside.
I agree with what others have been saying about the food. Buffet breakfast was wonderful and had lots of options. Italian place was okay, steakhouse was our favorite, sushi was okay, but the Blue Marlin was our favorite. We went there for lunch and dinner a couple times. We did end up getting very sick on our fourth day there, we think from the water or something was bad we ate. We did drink the water from the jugs at the restaurants before that. We were sick for five days until our doctor at home put us on antibiotics. So our advice would be to not drink the water from the restaurants, or salads and to avoid the ice. Also, don't brush your teeth with the water! We did that too.
We spent the majority of our time at the pools and went to Juanillo Beach once. We loved the weather and the pools and wanted to be outside as much as possible. There are many pools and we would suggest avoiding the main pool unless you want to be around kids and/or be nagged by the employees selling things around the pool. Very annoying. Our absolute favorite pool was the castle pool because of the view and almost no one was ever there! It was like our own private pool.
Overall, we loved the grounds and the resort. The views were spectacular and every single person we met who worked there was happy and nice. Even though they work very long hours. We would see the same hostess for breakfast, lunch and dinner every single day. The employee that we loved and raved about was Bernardo at the Love Piano Bar. He was funny and remembered us every time we came in. We made sure to always stop by and see him everyday.
- 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