My girlfriend and I went to Iberostar Bavaro from 11/8/12 to 11/11/12. We booked our vacation package on cheapcaribbean.com and added on transport from olympic tours. Overall, getting to and from the airport and the whole boarding process couldn't have gone more smoothly. I'll just try to make this review as thorough and organized as possible, but I apologize as it will be lengthy.
Aesthetics - Driving into the resort is an amazing sight. You get a glimpse of their beautiful golf course and eventually you get an idea of how big this resort actually is. The lobby is very clean and well kept. There is always a maid around to is keep it clean. The grounds are unbelievably well kept and colorful. You are surrounded by cana, coconut, tamarind, and banana trees to name a few. There is also an abundance of birds: flamingos, storks, ducks, and we even got to see peacocks make their way to the lobby and hope on stage!
Food/Drinks - There are certain a la carte restaurants to choose from (fancy), but the buffet is always open to everyone. The dining area is big so there's never trouble finding seating. The food covers a very broad spectrum, so there will be some you will definitely like, some you will not so much. My favorite was their paella and roast pig! There is a dress code (no trunks at lunch, trousers and shoes at dinner) but it didn't seem like anyone was really enforcing it. Wide variety of fruits and desserts as well. There is 24 hour room service perfect for after hours/late night snacks, and they just come and deliver you anything you want from their menu, it's great! There's always a beachside bar and they'll serve snacks like hot dogs, popcorn, nachos, and ice cream. The frozen drinks can be a little sugary, but there is no limit to selection. Although Presidente is their only beer, all inclusive also means you can get your share of Johnny Walker.
Rooms - Iberostar Bavaro does a great job with the rooms. If I had to nitpick, there was a tiny spider in the corner of our room that I took care of but the maids are more than thorough with their cleaning. Beds are comfortable, the safe is free, and the fridge is stocked with plenty of drinks. It seemed like there was a very small leak whenever I showered but that wasn't a big deal at all, they'll give you more than enough towels and if you don't have enough then just call room service, no big deal. Wifi is supposedly $35/night but we were able to use it without a login/password for a couple days.
Beach/Pool - Very nice. Light sand perfect for walking along the waves. They provide you with towel cards so getting/replacing a towel was never a problem. There is some seaweed that can wash up to shore but groundskeepers are constantly working to clear it up. There are some people who decide to go topless, but hey, whatever floats your boat. There is always a bar within a short distance of the beach and pools, and though there may be plenty of people, there are more than enough seats on the beach to accomodate. Volleyball, soccer, and spa on the beach are available too. The pools are great. The animacion team always has lots going on to keep you busy (dancing, bowling, even beer chugging contests for adults). It did rain for a little bit during one of our days - don't run because it can get slippery on the walkways - but we hung out outside our room chillin' and watching coconuts fall in our bath robes.
Service - These are some of the nicest people I have ever met. I wanted to buy a cake and flowers for my girlfriend during our a la carte dinner and they arranged everything flawlessly. They even had a musicians serenade us during dinner and they sang happy birthday for her no problem! Though tipping is not expected, the workers are so kind and gracious and go out of their way for us (they seem to work very long hours too), so we just tipped anyway. It does help to know some basic Spanish as some of the servers may not speak English very well. Communication wasn't very difficult overall. A few of the workers that stood out to me were Miguel, the bartender by the sports bar/discoteca and Javier, the server at the late night snack area and Iris, the receptionist at the lobby. Very personable, friendly, and helpful!
Amenities - This place is huge! It took us at least a day to be able to navigate the area without a map. The great part about this resort is that it is connected with Iberostar Punta Cana and Iberostar Dominicana, so you'll have access to all their pools, bars, etc. Spa services, stores, and a gym are there for those interested. There is also a casino, a karaoke bar, and a discotheque. Clay and hard tennis courts are available upon reservation as well as golf. Not to mention foosball, table tennis, and their huge chess board by the pool. Hell, they even had archery!
The only thing I wasn't fond of were the vendors. I don't have a problem looking at merchandise but a lot of these guys were more aggressive than I was comfortable with. I just wanted to relax and have an uninterrupted walk to lunch and dinner without being bothered and asked questions as we passed each table of merchandise. I'll admit I ended up taking different routes back and forth just to avoid these guys. Having to explain myself to each vendor each time we walked past the main area was annoying. There is already a jewelry shop and plenty of stores, so having them around wasn't necessary.
However the trip overall was a great success. Iberostar Bavaro is probably the coolest, best-kept resort I have ever been to. It's a clean, friendly, beautiful place that will definitely impress you. Great workers, great food, and a whole lot of fun stuff to do. A+! Just beware of the vendors.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Directly on the beautiful, kilometre-long beach of Bavaro. Tropical gardens. Elegant Caribbean flair. Top 5-star luxury. 11 restaurants. First–Class international shows. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Punta Cana
- Iberostar Bavaro Punta Cana
- Bavaro Punta Cana
- Dominican Republic Bavaro
- Bavaro Cana Punta
- Iberostar Bavaro Suites
- Iberostar Bavaro Dominican Republic
- Punta Cana Bavaro
- Iberostar Hotel Punta Cana
- Iberostar Dominican Republic