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“Like an old friend ...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of VIK Hotel Cayena Beach

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VIK Hotel Cayena Beach
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   White Sand, Carretera Arena Gorda | n/a Bávaro, Punta Cana 290217, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #55 of 98 Hotels in Punta Cana
Gaithersburg, Maryland
Level Contributor
221 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 514 helpful votes
“Like an old friend ...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 13, 2012

DH and I headed back to Cayena Beach (November 23 – December 1) for the second time on our 4th trip to the Dominican Republic. As on prior trips we booked using Skyauction. Like an old friend, Cayena Beach welcomed us back with open arms. Overall, I will say that the property is showing its age. I will also say that if you are a traveler who does not sweat the small stuff, then Cayena might fit the bill. However, if you need lots of amenities, oodles of restaurant choices, oodles of meal options, private jacuzzis, etc, etc, then head elsewhere and leave Cayena for those of us who enjoy its more simpler options.

What’s new?
• We loved the additional VIP seating at the beach! There are now additional (comfortable) loungers and hammocks on a raised area behind the original seating area. Love it!

• Love the new comfortable loungers with cushions. Something to think about though – the fabric colors selected will start (and have started) to look stained and tired. The new chairs are a basket-weave type that are very sturdy. No more “loosey goosey” suspension in the middle.

• Security now seems to patrol the VIP area more than in the past. They’ve perfected the art of smiling while scanning your wrists for the Cayena bands.

• Surprise, surprise! We got excellent WiFi every day while lounging at the beach! We were in heaven. I surfed on my Kindle Fire and Nook and DH used his I-phone every single day. Periodically we would get kicked off but we’d just reenter the security password and we were fine. WiFi in our room was still bad though unless you sat on the patio or directly facing the reception area.

• The a la carte restaurants are now open on the same nights. In the past they used to alternate. We ate at neither restaurant as there was no need. To those who often ask – men need to wear long pants, shirts with collars and shoes with toes. Interestingly enough that’s the same requirement at the buffet and very few people followed that instruction! LOL

• I believe we were only asked twice in the entire 9 days if we wanted to get an offer to own a unit at Cayena. Both times we were asked by different people, so they quickly moved on. Last year, you may recall that we were approached several times by the same person who seemed to have made it his personal mission to convince us. Just to clarify since I don’t believe I made it clear in my prior Cayena review – the salespeople who approached us work for Cayena and a tour is/was not required as part of our Skyauction booking.

• While lounging at the beach we were approached by a salesperson at Ocean Blue and Sand – the property next to Cayena/Arena Blanca. He was polite and DH (the nicer of the two of us sometimes ;-) led him to believe that we would consider his offer to tour and have breakfast at Ocean Blue – not. I flat out said no and why (see my reasons below). On this trip we walked by more properties near to Cayena and quite frankly Ocean Blue does not compare. Maybe that property put its investment into restaurants and other amenities, but the beach area is lamentable. The chairs are laid out row-on-top-of-row like little soldiers, the seating is tired and there is limited shade. Why someone would think that a free breakfast offer to people staying at an all-inclusive would appeal is beyond me. Get this property some marketing help immediately! LOL

• Guests seemed a bit nicer to each other overall this year. I didn’t notice some of the pushy/rude behavior by resort guests that I’ve noticed on prior stays in the Dominican Republic. We only had one run-in with “a real piece of work” so we must be living charmed lives!

• Maybe we missed it last year but you can now get beach towels at the reception desk. Last year we depended on catching the towel guy in the towel hut – essentially we were two ships passing in the late afternoon with towels in hand. This year we turned in our towels each day and got replacements – at the front desk.

• The towel guy now offers beach drink service! You could have knocked me over with a feather when he stopped by to ask if we wanted a beverage on our first lounging day at the beach. Bless his heart, he offered drinks maybe 3 of the 9 days we were there, so there has been sightings, drinks on a daily basis are apparently a work-in-progress.

What stayed the same?
• We headed back to Suite 106 (the same as last Thanksgiving) – first floor, double beds, centrally located, patio, private back yard. I said it in last year’s review and it was ignored by at least one other reviewer I know of – I would not choose Cayena Beach for a honeymoon. It has too many double beds and too few kings. Here ends my public service announcement. This year we didn’t request 106 but it was perfectly fine and met our requirements – first floor, centrally located, super-functioning A/C unit. We were well-located for walking to the beach or to meals at el Mirador. Also, proximity to the front desk helped with WiFi access.

• We ate at the buffet (el Mirador) for the entire time we were there – breakfast, lunch and dinner. If lunch was a bit less than we expected (or we were hedging our bets on dinner, we would eat a snack (hot dogs, pizza, cookies at el Bucanero). At either restaurant food was always tasty, and there was always something or a couple “somethings” that DH or I could eat. I will say that the best lunch of our trip was on Wednesday when there was whole fried fish with a tasty rice. I had to take a picture. It’s the photo titled Best.Meal.Ever. LOL! Breakfast always had the basics. I was glad to see crepes, croissants and lots of fresh fruit making a repeat performance! Lunch offered the most variety IMHO. Dinner was hit or miss and it was often where the chefs tried to go upscale and often missed the mark. As long as I had fruit, a starch, beans and a protein (fish, roast pork, chicken or some such) at lunch and/or dinner I was fine. So was my DH. We only drink non-alcoholic drinks so we can’t speak to alcohol choices, drinks being watered down or the like.

• There were more than enough loungers and palapas on the beach for the number of guests staying at Cayena (at least when we were there). I’m very sun-sensitive and an early riser anyway, so we always got a palapa. However, most of our 9 days there we saw unclaimed palapas at 9am or later.

• The property layout appears to be the same, which was great. There is construction going on but nothing that impacted walking anywhere.

• The a la carte restaurants still require no reservations.

• Had to head to the gift shop over on the Arena Blanca side to find an obscure personal item and have to say I was pleasantly surprised to find it and at a relatively reasonable cost. For a small shop, this gift shop is chock-full of stuff – most of them not cheap, but to expect that would be unwise.

• We used Conexion this year for our transportation (just as last year) and all went well once again. On arrival we looked for our name on a sign and found our driver quickly. On our return our driver arrived at 2 pm on the dot and we were quickly on our way. You pay for pick up and drop off on arrival in Punta Cana. We will definitely use Conexion on our next and future trips.

If you found this review helpful then please click “yes” below.

I wish you safe and happy travels. Feel free to send me a PM with specific questions about Punta Cana, Cayena Beach, the Dominican Republic, Sky Auction or any of the other properties or islands we’ve visited.

Room Tip: Email the manager before you arrive to request room location. There is no elevator so you will have...
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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
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257 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
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English first
Manchester, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

We went there in April 2012. Checkin was easy once you figured out where you were going. The staff was incredible. We were there with our daughter in her late 20's and they really treated her well. My daughter injured herself and I cannot say enough about the care she received especially from Ezequel.
The food and the staff at the El Cano was excellant. I cannot say enough about the staff. They really made you feel like family. The food in the other restaurants was very good. You cannot beat having your own private beach, swimming pool and restaurant seperate from the larger resort. The shows in the evening were entertaining and there was plenty do on the resort during the day. I was extremely disappointed in the fitness facility. It was pretty much not usable. The room were adequate and did not enjoy using the bathroom as felt it was small. We really enjoy walking the beach and we have been to quite a few places in Mexico and the Carribean but this was one of the best. Timeshare pressure was usual but not overbearing. Overall our stay was very good and would definately go back there.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

My husband and I spent two weeks at the VIK Cayenna. We had a wonderful time and service was excellent. We did not need for anything. Ezequiel and Melanie from Guest Services were extremely helpful. Our bed was FIRM. Pack muscle relaxants - I wish I did. The food is plentyful but so-so. The beach and water were excellent. We would definitely go back.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
    • 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.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2012

We were at the Vik Cayena Beach 10/20/12-10/27/12.
It was myself, my husband, our 26 year old daughter, and our 15 year old son.
I had reservations before going here after reading some not-so-great reviews. We got there, check in was a breeze, and we went to our rooms. We were on the Cayena side rooms 115 & 116. I'm probably biased but I think we had the best rooms of the whole resort!
The view was amazing, we were literally steps away from the beach, and we had our own "backyard" (a rectangle grassy area with 2 lounge chairs).
Upon check in, or any questions we had we dealt with Ezequiel from Guest Services. He was wonderful. Reall friendly and super helpful.
We ate most of our meals at the Mirador Buffet and had a waiter named Alexus for almost every meal. He was also super friendly and gave really great service. We never waited long for more of anything to drink and if we needed anything he could help us with he was right there.
The food was so-so, but we didn't go hungry. You are, afterall, in another country. The food will probably not be like the food where ever you are from....part of the adventure :)
We spent most of our days lounging on the beach.
The beach there is amazing. Beautiful water, and kept up great! We witnessed them raking seaweed by hand more than once. The seaweed wasn't even very bad.
Awesome place to relax and rejuvinate. I would stay here again without hesitation.

  • Stayed October 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Jacinto, California
Level Contributor
40 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

Hello again... I spent a week (9/15-22/2012) with my wife and step-daughter at the exclusive VIK Cayena Beach Club (CBC).

First of all, the best thing about the CBC is that it doesn't pretend to be something it is not. They don't claim to be a swanky 5-star joint. They aren't. I will say their service is top notch. Everyone, from the reception manager, the wait staff at the restaurants, the entertainment crew, all the way to the guy trimming the hedges, is as polite as could be. Always with a smile they will greet you, "Buenos Dias!"

The food is pretty good. The restaurant on the exclusive side of the property, is a great place to have breakfast or lunch. You are literally eating 50 feet from the beach. They have some really good things on the menu. My step-daughter is a "Pescatarian"-- the only meat she will eat is fish. She made it through the week without running out of tasty options. The international buffet on the main side of the property is also good. It has about 6 serving stations they stack with food choices. There is always beef, pork, chicken and fish available. Also, plenty of greens and other veggies.

The activities available are kind of hoakie... They play silly games during the day. Beach volleyball, "olympics," horseshoes... I just prefer to sit on the beach.

There is an attached watersports center, Pelicano Sport. This is where I got my entertainment. The shop is not owned by the resort. I have met and enjoyed some conversation with the owners Peter and Chris.This is where I got my entertainment. I scuba dive... I went seven tanks during the week and finally earned my Nitrox certification. My wife and step-daughter took advantage of the free activities they offer-- boogie boarding, snorkeling, kayaking and sailing.

So, with all this good stuff, there has to be a bad... right?? Well, yes... unless you like big feather pillows, bring your own. Also, the beds are FIRM. As those are personal preferences, it may or may not matter to you.

Anyhow, I hope this helps. If you have any questions, I usually respond fairly quickly. I will be putting up pictures soon.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2012

We loved Cayena!

My husband, two teenagers (13 and 16) and I were there from 8/4/12 through 8/11/12, and we had a great time. The people, beach and water sports were terrific. We also loved the El Cano restaurant for breakfast and lunch and the feeling of being spoiled by the warm and friendly staff at Cayena.

The boutique feeling of the hotel was GREAT. We got to know not only the warm and friendly people that worked there but also several of out fellow travelers from the US and other countries. We enjoyed a fun dinner party by the pool, coconut water from coconuts that they opened for us and a great party boat half day that were all free for Cayena guests. We also enjoyed a few of the Arena Blanca activities and resources although we were definitely happiest on the Cayena part of the property.

I'm not sure what the previous reviewer was talking about but everything was working fine during our stay of the same week. The room was pretty, clean and had great views. I would agree with other reviewers that this might not be up to a five star rating in regard to some things (the sheets were only ok) but the service and again, the warmth with which it was delivered can't be beaten! Think casual, island style luxury, not the Waldorf.

One pleasant surprise- the half hour catamaran ride that is mentioned on the website can be a half hour lesson if you want and then you can take the boat out every day for a half hour on your own! Just remember to reserve it and the windsurfers ahead of time.

Enjoy the beautiful beach, sheltering palopas, people and coziness! We hope to do the same again next year!

Room Tip: Ocean front seems to be for timeshare owners, but all rooms have an ocean view. Our room (for as muc...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leominster, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2012

Went here on my Honey moon from 8/5 to 8/12, got there and had to pay twice for an upgraded room with a queen, or king size bed, never got it, I told them i was on my honeymoon and all i wanted was a room with a king or queen bed, not the honeymoon sweet, all i got for an answer was do you have your marriage license, now i got married on a friday and left for the trip sunday, so obviously the paperwork was in process and i didnt have it (so i paid twice for an upgraded room with a king or queen bed and never got it, but i was to hot and tired to argue anymore and accepted the two full beds we got). In the week we stayed there, the toilet broke twice, the AC worked poorly, the food was mediocre, the pool was gross and was getting inspected by some sort of health person, the beach had like 10 feet of sea weed to truck through to just get to decent water, the excursions were ok but over priced, you constantly had people coming up to you to try and get you to buy things, or buy into a time share, the whole hotel lost the toilets for like 7 hours and our room was fumigated all in the same week, and this was my honeymoon, which at this point i consider a complete disappointment, also there are a bunch of feral cats running around. Also every room has a lock box, unfortunately you have to rent a locking mechanism at an additional cost just to use it. The upper management was fairly rude, the grounds crew, bar tenders, cleaning people, and the waitresses etc, were very nice however. To sum it all up, i would never stay at this hotel chain ever again, whether it be here or anywhere else they have resorts...

Room Tip: Dont go here
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
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Additional Information about VIK Hotel Cayena Beach

Address: White Sand, Carretera Arena Gorda | n/a Bávaro, Punta Cana 290217, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #55 of 98 Hotels in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — VIK Hotel Cayena Beach 5*
Number of rooms: 47
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Standing next to the VIK Hotel Arena Blanca, this hotel enjoys an outstanding location overlooking the beach of Bávaro. The Hotel Cayena Beach is an exclusive part of the complex, designed with the most discerning guests, like you, in mind ... more   less 
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