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“Please Read this one - It's the simple truth!!!” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana

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Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana
Crta. Arena Gorda, Punta Cana 9999, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #48 of 98 Hotels in Punta Cana
South Lyon, Michigan
1 review
“Please Read this one - It's the simple truth!!!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2011

Spend the extra money and make a top 5 decision. Upon our arrival, check in was great - but sent us to the wrong room - after 3 hours of discussions we arrived to our correct room which was not yet cleaned - took another 2 hrs. to get cleaned.
Food was terrible and bland - same food every night - fruit was bad. Long lines for the omelet station and pasta station. No fresh pancakes and ran out of food and fresh juices.
I am not a big drinker but when I wanted a baileys and coffee the bartender asked me my room # and I was charged - go figure, this was not included but they did carry premium alcohol for a extra fee.
Staff said yes to everything and always had a hand out. Plan on spending an additional $300.00 for good service. Take lots of 5's. We were told this was a family resort and its not - drunken young adults with no cut offs. I actually saw 2 young ladies vomit pool side at noon and the staff never said a word - they just rinsed it away with a bucket of water and pretended like it never happened. Pools look great just don't look in the water with goggles on, it is the grosses thing you will ever see. Bathrooms by the pools were always out of order - you figure out the rest.
The beach was awesome besides the 20,000 or more people everyday - I mean packed everyday! Pool chairs and cabannas were pretty good - the only problem was I had to get up every morning @ 5 a.m. (I am on vacation remember) in order to get me and my family chairs with a small table, sometimes I felt bad for the people who were walking around looking for a chair in disbelief that out of (my guess) 5,000 chairs, not 1 was available.
Room service consisted of the worst food ever - we ordered first evening and that was it - even my kids complained about the wierd tasting watermelon. Our room smelled like a cigar bar - even our air freshners didn't mask the smell.
The rooms had paper thin walls which we could hear everthing that went on from 2 rooms away and the worst was every night when the drunken people came back our family was awakened by yelling and slamming doors.
Grounds are lush and beautiful but plan on walking alot because this place is huge. The trolly system left you standing and waiting because they were always full of people.
In closing, we have been to many different resorts and are just average people who work hard to have the finer things on our vacations and if I help 1 family make the right decision I have accomplished my mission in writing my truth to you! Good Luck and God Bless - The Family of 4 from Michigan!!!

Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
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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
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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indiana
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2011

I have stayed at many all inclusives.. this was my least favorite..IThis is the first time i have ever left a negative review, but i feel i have to be honest. It does has its pros and cons.. I will start with the negatives first. The food buffet was terrible, and i mean i have eaten better food in my high school cafeteria, it was in my opinion WAY below average. The pineapple was fantastic, and the bread, always fresh. However really sick of salads and bread by the end of the week. The hamburgers were always pink in the center, and i can't handle raw meat. The other meats, beef , and pork. always tough, and hard to chew. Chicken was the only meat we could find that was edible. Seemed they catered more to the European types of foods. I am not a picky eater either.
They charge you for the room safe.. around 30.00 a week to use it. It was a larger than usual , would hold a laptop, camera, etc. but i have yet been to an AI, where they charge you to use the room safe.
This resort is MASSIVE, i think 4 or 5 in this complex, you have to take the transportations provided around to get to point a to point b, otherwise you will be walking along time.
we flew with USA 3000, out of Chicago, flight delay going , and a flight delay of 2 hours coming home, no movies, no tv, no food, they did serve free drinks, so eat before you get on this plane or take some snacks with you.
The beaches and pools were beautiful, I think Dominican Republic has the prettiest beaches i have ever seen. If you want a beach chair, you better get up at the crack of dawn to reserve your seat, because if you don't, you won't have one, the beaches were always overcrowded, and never seemed to be enough chairs for everyone, the pools seemed to have the same problem, and then 1/2 the chairs reserved with a beach towel and empty most of the time.
The alacarte dinners were good, finally had a good steak (and i was so happy). the Japanese was good as well. You have to make reservations. and you might want to make them as quickly as possible, they fill up quick. And if staying a week you only get 3 alacarte reservations. (i guess it was the only 3 good meals we ate)
The rooms were very spacious, king size bed, couch, mini bar stocked with water, pepsi, diet pepsi 7-up, and a couple of generic beers. The baths were all marble, jetted tub, always had hot water, Housekeeping did a fabulous job everyday.. tipped her well too. no problems with the rooms.
People always friendly, however communication barrier at times ,, but this was not there fault but my own.
we did take a cab a couple of nights down to the hard rock hotel and casino, 12.00 one way but so worth it, casino was new and beautiful, and free drinks and food if you gambled. we ended up coming home with some money. The cab driver did try and charge us 20.00, but i argued and ended up paying the 12.00.
Entertainment-we only saw the circus show which was good, but lack of entertainment through out the day seemed non-existent.
internet- they offered free wifi in the lobby, worked well never had a problem
I will mention this.. i was in line one day at the stores on resort and the lady in front of me tried to pay with a 20.00 the cashier would not take it.. she said it was fake, the woman said she got it at the casino at hotel. so beware of counterfeit bills.
We stayed last year at the Ocean Blue in Punta Cana, and in my opinion, no comparison to the bahia principe punta cana. I would go back to Ocean Blue in a heartbeat, I have also stayed at Riu resorts in Jamaica, and Beaches in Ocho Rios, Iberostar , and Palace resorts in Mexico, and we always stay in 5 apple resorts, however i would not ever in this lifetime stay at a bahia principe resort again. Mostly for the lack of food quality.... It was the WORST food i have ever tried to eat at an all-inclusive.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Glassville, New Brunswick
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2011

This hotel seemed a bit large and overwhelming at first, but it is the best! We have been to DR 4 times, and this was our second stay in Punta Cana, the first being 8 years ago. Lots of changes! This is our second stay @ a Gran Bahia Principe property - we stayed in El Portillo in Samana last year. Both resorts are very well managed, but this one was the best! The food is exceptional as is the service and friendliness of the hotel staff! We will certainly be looking for more Gran Bahia Principe hotels for any future travel plans!

  • Stayed February 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2011

Yup it's big, not a south of France 5 star, but great place to spend time with family and friends. We were there for the week of Feb 11-18th along with 6-7 families all of whom have 2 boys ages 18 and 15 or 16. Spent mornings and early afternoon at the beach, up to the diamond pool for 4:00-5:00pm happy hour, then to rooms to ready for supper. Even took in few shows. Had small problems with room, particularily as it was on the ground level next to tram, did ask to have it changed at the diamond reception and was happily accomodated. Never worried about where or what the boys were up to and they were able to fend for and enjoy themselves. It worked for us under the circumstances but if I was to go there with just my wife and I I'd probably go for the Ambar section.
All of the minor complaints you read on this site are valid, bathroom issues, mini fridge, language but certainly not enough of a problem to ruin a holiday unless you're really expecting 5 star in which case you should go to Barbados or Bermuda or Jamaica or the Mediterranean and not to an all inclusive.
Weather was great, the hobie cats are fun and actually available if booked a day in advance. We did just about everything: tennis;para sail; snorkel; sail and kayak, most negotiated on the beach and at reasonable rates. The main thing I would suggest is if you have a problem, ask the staff for help and they'll do their best to fix it. Just remember, it's a big busy place so there's lots of wear and tear on everything in spite of their continuous efforts to maintain. Hope this helps, feel free to email me with any questions.
I'd definitely go again.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2011

I must admit that I was skeptical about this resort before I arrived because I saw a number of bad reviews. All that I can say is that these people must have been to a different resort. This place was fabulous!

The good:
- the resort grounds were the best we have ever scene and this is including several stays at the Ritz and Sandals
- the beach is unbeatable- pure white sand with no rocks
- the rooms are extremely clean and well maintained
- the shows were the best that we have seen in any Caribbean resort
- the Mikado a la carte restaurant was easily the best

The okay:
- the food was plentiful but it was typical Caribbean food. Certainly nothing to complain about though
- the drinks were okay- most are made with the slushy mixture but there was a lobby bar that made blended drinks with real banana. Be sure to ask for the "Sammy Sosa" drink!
- there was a lot of people so if you want shade, you need to reserve your chair by the pool by mid-morning

All in all this place is a gem and we definitely will go back. One tip: try to email the resort a week before your arrival to book your ala carte restaurants. One less thing to worry about!

  • Stayed February 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2011

Just returned from a great week at Gran Bahia Principe Punta Cana

The resort is fairly large, one of the largest we have ever stayed at. This was not really a bad thing, it was run very very well. Food was great. Beach was great. Lobby and service was also great. The only two complaints I would have is that it was hard to get beach chairs in the shade in the umbrellas. The easy fix to this was to wake up early and run down and save some chairs and then either go back to bed or go for breakfast (depending on the events from the previous night). The second complaint would be that the diving closest to the resort was really disappointing. All the corals were dead and pretty much nothing living in and around them.

For better diving I would recommend doing the excursions for diving. We did the Catalina Island excursion and the wall dive was really cool! The one good/interesting dive off of the resort was at a site called “potato” which was a series of coral tunnels (they called them caves, but they were not). This was a very cool dive. As for the Catalina Island excursion, like I said, the wall dive was awesome! If you are going for the snorkelling, don’t bother. We were 8 people with 4 of us diving and the other 4 were not impressed with the snorkelling. The island itself wasn’t the greatest either. But if you are going for diving I would recommend this trip.

There was also a trip to Saona (can’t remember how to spell it) which I would go on to see if I were to go back, but again, I am more on the diving side of things.

Lets see, what else... The entertainment was pretty cool. We went to the Tex-Mex, Japanese (Teppanyaki), and the French restaurant. French was voted the best out of our crew, the Teppanyaki restaurant was not a real Teppanyaki chef (which was kinda disappointing) but the food was great. And the Tex-Mex restaurant was excellent!!! I enjoyed the Tex-Mex the best.

Beach was wavy, but very easy to swim in, pools were great, rooms were really good and staff was good.

All in all it was a great resort, and I would recommend it to everyone with the disclaimer about grabbing chairs in the morning and the diving.

Derek

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
St. John's, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2011

Ok, so here is the truth. This hotel has zero customer service, and I mean zero. The manager is in hiding and rude as f when you do get him, and you will need him.
Beach: lovely, but clearly not hotel fault.
Rooms: clean enough but dated and nothing works
Shows: Good enough
disco/kareoke bar: lots of people, only reason to pick this resort is if you like a good packed disco.
Staff: watch out if you have teenage girls, they are pervs in my book. Friendly until you have problem.
Manager: Good luck seeing this guy, pope is less protected.
In all the resort is fine if u have no problems, the food is trash, but never had a resort where the food was great. The night life is good for a resort, and kareoke bar is great meeting place. Teenages have nothing to do at night unless u pay 100 buck to creepy disco manger to let them in with all the other teens they let in. But it is not 100% bad resort, just pain in butt. Hope this helps. P.S. Do not let your teens run around the resort alone, the staff try to pick them up, I hear bad stories when there.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
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Additional Information about Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana

Address: Crta. Arena Gorda, Punta Cana 9999, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#18 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#21 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#22 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#24 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#37 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 756
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 2 lake-style pools Jacuzzi Sun terraces Lounger, sun umbrella and towel service BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, tennis court, multi-sports court Water activity centre Motorised sports (additional charge) WiFi access in the lobby (1h per day free of charge) and in rooms (additional charge) Meeting and convention room 1 buffet restaurant and 5 speciality restaurants Japanese restaurant 16 bars Wedding gazebo Punta Blanca Golf Club: 18 hole Punta Blanca Golf Club (additional charge) Pueblo Principe: Shopping and Leisure Mall with local craft stores, live music, shows, stores, bars, disco and casino Rooms 756 rooms including two types: Superior Junior Suite and Club Golden Junior Suite Room facilities: King size bed or two full size beds Fully-equipped bathroom with Jacuzzi, hair dryer and a full range of amenities Balcony or terrace Air conditioning Ceiling fan Telephone Satellite TV Coffee-making facilities Mini-bar Safe (additional charge) WiFi (additional charge) Club Golden Junior Suite (See page 18 Club Golden, Club Hacienda). Children Bahia Scouts The hotel is perfect for families, offering a range of facilities tailored especially for children, including the following: Children's pool Mini Club for children aged 4 to 12 Baby Station Bahia Scouts Water Park Fun Area and Adventure Park (additional charge) Teen's club Other Services 24 hour medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) WiFi in the lobby (1h per day free of charge) and in rooms (additional charge) Specialised service for organising weddings, incentive trips, events and anniversaries Personalised menus (for celiacs, diabetics, etc.) Available on request and subject to circumstances ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Punta Cana Gran Bahia Principe

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