My husband and I came here for our honeymoon as well as to spend time with our friends, April 21st-26th. If I could give it 3.5 stars I would, as it was above average but not quite very good. We are seasoned travelers but this was a first time to Punta Cana.
Check In & Rooms:
After the long trip we were greeted with champagne and the bellman took our luggage for us. Check in was our first disappointment, they told us we would have 2 double beds instead of a king. I reminded them this was our honeymoon and even offered to show my marriage license. They said we could move to a king bed room the next day. The one good thing though, NO WRIST BANDS!
I couldn't have been happier to get out of our first room. It was in one of the buildings that had a pond view and the room on the bottom floor. Our room had a ton of bugs, since they can crawl right in under the door. And forget going outside on the hammock, the mosquitoes were terrible!
The next day came and we were pretty much kicked out of our room at noon only to find out our new room wouldn't be available until 4pm. This meant I had to carry all of our important documents and belongings in my purse to the pool, as I do not trust these things in checked baggage. This meant another uncomfortable day until our room was ready. However, to our surprise the room was ready a little early around 2:30pm and this room was much better! We didn't have the special honeymoon decorations other people had, but it was no big deal. The new room was on the top of the 2nd building with a pool view. It had a high ceiling, a balcony, and best of all no bugs!
All of the bathrooms have a glass window where you can be seen going to the bathroom or showering. There is no way to fix being seen in the shower, but this did not bother me. As for going to the bathroom, I just threw my robe over the shower glass, and the view was blocked. This room and the previous also had a large Jacuzzi tub, but due to being old they looked dirty and we did not use them. The mini bar had an airplane sized white wine, light and regular beers, a variety of sodas, and water. Above the mini bar were full sized bottles of Jim Beam, Stoli, red wine, and 2 other liquors I can't recall. The snacks are peanuts, crackers, and Oreos. We also had a coffee machine.
Let me make a special note about the beds: THEY ARE HARD AS A ROCK! Have a few shots of Mamajuana before bed, especially if you are a side sleeper!
We ate at all of the restaurants and enjoyed our food. The best were the French, Asian, and Lobster restaurants. I saw in other reviews many people didn't like the Lobster restaurant but I guess we just hit it on a good night, because it may have been my favorite!
The service was amazing at all the restaurants and we tipped accordingly, they truly deserved it. Also, there are no reservations and we only had to wait once for a table our whole trip. When you have to wait they give you a buzzer, so you can enjoy your time somewhere else until your table is ready.
I loved how you can order take out from any other restaurants any time of the day or night as long as they are open. You can also order room service, which we did 3 times, but it was honestly not the greatest. For a late night snack we grabbed pizza to go from Oregano since they were open till 2am.
My husband and I like to get our money's worth of booze while on vacation, and this place was great for that! The bar service was excellent and the waiter service was good! We usually tipped, but the staff did not make us feel obligated like some all-inclusives we have been to.
Make sure you order a Coco Loco, it's in a real coconut! I also heard they will put any drink you want in a coconut! The Pina Coladas have real pineapple chunks and the banana drinks are made with real bananas! They make a mean Rum Runner if you ask them to make it from scratch, no mix. The wine and champagne were very good. I also loved that you could order light beer and some people even had bottles of Coors Lite they got from one of the bars. Don't forget your Mamajuana before bed!
During the day they have a lot of activities but I can’t comment on them, we just hung out by the pool all day. The staff does not pressure you into activities, but there are a few outside companies that try hard to sell you their excursions.
Though it’s not necessary an activity, I must mention that the gym is very nice! They have a lot of equipment and it is all clean and new looking. I can’t comment on the spa, but I heard good things from another couple.
In the evening the place to be is the Martini Bar or the long bar behind it. The Martini bar makes the best espresso martini I have ever had! Plus these bars are right beside the nightly entertainment.
We saw 2 shows during our time there, one was good and the other was amazing! The one we enjoyed was similar to a Cirque show.
For late night head to the disco, after a few drinks it was FUN and we danced a lot! They play good music. Some nights were more happening than others, it just depends on how many people are there.
And for late late night the casino bar is open, but it's nothing special. The casino is open from 7pm-2am but we didn’t spend much time there. We would rather do our gambling in places where you get free rooms, like Vegas. They have maybe 20 slot machines and about 6-8 tables. Make sure if you are playing slots you play out to the dollar, they do not give you coins! They kept my 75 cents without the option to play it once I hit cash out!
We didn’t spend a lot of time on the beach, but it was beautiful and there were plenty of places to sit. The pool also had plenty of chairs, we usually sat near the swim up bar, and really enjoyed it. The pool is very clean and a great temperature. The towels were softer than the ones in our room, and we really liked that we didn’t have to sign them out, or use a towel card.
If this was our first time to an all-inclusive I think we would have been blown away, however over the years we have unfortunately gotten a little picky. The major negative was the dated rooms, and hard beds. Other than that, everything else that I could complain about is normal things you encounter while on a resort. Though the positives greatly outweigh the negatives I can honestly say the next time we go to the Dominican Republic we would like to try another resort. With that said, I would still recommend Excellence to anyone coming to the area...so long as you're coming with your significant other, it's not a singles place!
Get a room on the second or third floor to avoid bugs!
See more room tips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.