The place is beautiful. The beach is breathtaking. The pools are lovely. The food was plentiful, well presented, and very good. The customer service was the worst I have ever encountered.
I only had 4 whole days to enjoy my vacation. Spending part of the evening we arrived and most of the following day waiting for someone to fix things (like the KEY) was not just frustrating, it was like being robbed - of time, of money and of precious time away.
The first night we were taken to a room with only one bed, after I had written to make sure there would be two. We were two women traveling together who have no desire to be that close! We had the bellman take us back to the lobby where we were informed that there were no more rooms at the inn. With over 700 suites? Really? The "manager" said we could have a room with 2 beds the next day. When I asked how that would be possible if they were so booked, he said that someone else would have to be disappointed the next day. Yikes. Back to the room we went - where we still had to call and request sheets to make up the (twin sized) couch. Yup, that's why we upgraded in the first place, so I could sleep on a couch. Also, after paying for a safe, it didn't work so we were forced to carry all our valuables to dinner.
The following morning, after breakfast, we hightailed it to the lobby and asked when we could expect to be moved. They said they would move our luggage right away but we couldn't have keys until 1 o'clock. OK, so we we lugged our stuff around until then. Again, the safe key didn't work and, it turned out, either did the room key. I started calling for help with this issue about 1:50 PM and it was just before 5 PM (And after I had totally blown up at whoever was on the other end of the phone that had told me I must stay in the room and wait for staff and that they would be there in "10 minutes" just one time too many) before it was resolved. During this time, three different guys arrived with little boxes which plugged into the safe and agreed that, yes, they did not work. Sadly, they had no idea how to solve the problem. That day was pretty much blown.
The night before we left, I thought I would try out the Jacuzzi. It was a little tricky to get in but I thought it would make my tired back feel better. Well, something went awry and the room flooded and the electricity blew. Now I find myself in this high, slippery tub in pitch blackness. I managed to inch my way out, only to discover I was ankle deep in water and had a heck of a time finding the door. I called down for help and explained that the room was not only without power but was flooded to boot. I admit, help came a bit faster this time - sort of. The guy came to fix the power and had to slog through to shut off the Jacuzzi which jump-started when he turned the power back on, while another guy arrived on a bicycle and handed me two towels! I insisted that he come inside the room and see how he thought this "solution" would work. He very pleasantly asked, "Housekeeping?" Uh, duh, ya think? The electricity guy said, 'No more towels on the floor" OK! Do you think housekeeping ever showed up? I'll give you two guesses. The towels went on the floor. It seemed better than drowning or electrocuting myself in there. And, for a place that supposedly prides itself on its multi-lingual staff, apparently English is not one of the languages they know very well.
Should I include the part where we got one towel one day, no face-clothes two days, and they took off our bedspreads - one morning mine was folded up on the sofa and two nights later, my room-mate's received the same inexplicable treatment? Since We left the AC on all night, we were using them so we just never figured that one out. And, yes, we tipped every day.
Through all this, not one person apologized or even acknowledged our frustration or inconvenience.
Since I consider myself to be a pretty upbeat, accepting sort of person, I don't want to end on such a negative note. I do want to put in a good word for the specialty restaurants we went to. The chef at the Japanese restaurant had no personality (Or English, I guess). He simply showed us the ingredients and than cooked and served them. I wanted to go in the other room where I could hear the people having a great time with their chef. However, the food was delicious and the service was terrific. I would go back to eat there any time.
The Dominican restaurant was lovely and the staff there was very attentive and friendly. The food was good, though not fantastic but the ambiance and people made it well worth it. It was the best night out we had.
The entertainment crew deserves a lot of praise and admiration as well. They were energetic and so much fun to watch in the nightly shows. I have never seen a more hard-working crew anywhere!
Some friends of mine also booked this resort because we were going and because the deal looked so great. While their experience was not as dramatic as ours, it wasn't what they expected either. We all agreed that next year we would like to go back to the Caribbean but never again to the DR in general and the Gran Bahia in particular.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
February 13, 2013
Report response as inappropriate
Receive cordial greetings from all the team working at Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort, especially from our Quality & Customer Service Department.
Thank you for taking the time to let us know about your experience at our Hotel. We greatly appreciate your feedback as it enables us to continue improving and providing better service for our guests.
We would like to take this opportunity to extend our most sincere apologies for the inconveniences you encountered during your stay at our hotel. Please be assured that your comments have been already brought to the General Manager and we will give the proper attention.
We apologize for the impression you could perceive for the language barrier with some of our staff members. We assured you that we continuously work with our Human Resources and Quality departments to reinforce the training of our personnel. We strongly believe that our guest’s satisfaction depends of their daily performance.
We are glad to find out that there were some aspects from our services you find worth to mention such as beautiful premises, breath-taking beach, lovely pool, plentiful food, good entertainment and nice restaurants.
We hope to welcome you once again at one of our Hotels and be able to show our quality of service and customer satisfaction, commitment of our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resort, and change any negative perception you may have about us.
Social Media Coordinator
Grand Bahía Príncipe Bávaro Resort
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.