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“Great holidays, Final Positive Review but certainly not a quiete place” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro

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Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Bavaro | Arena Gorda-Macao, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #48 of 101 hotels in Punta Cana
Sintra, Portugal
Top Contributor
150 reviews 150 reviews
40 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
145 helpful votes 145 helpful votes
“Great holidays, Final Positive Review but certainly not a quiete place”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2009

Hi all !
I stayed with my girlfriend in this hotel complex (Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort) last month.
At the end, i think i will give a positive review for this holidays and for this hotel complex.
The negative things were few comparing to positive ones.
This was my second time in Punta Cana. I was there some years ago, and things were little different. There are much more people now there, its really touristic now.


Lets start with the complex itself.

1-) RESORT COMPLEX: This is far as i know the biggest resort i've been in my life. The complex has about half milion of square meters area, its really HUGE!
I had to take two different bus to get from my bedroom into the beach. Walking should take about 20-30 min.
The guys from the bus/train are rude and are always talking each other, keeping the clients waiting.
The Resort has Bahia Principe Bavaro and Bahia Principe Punta Cana both inside. Then, inside both hotels, you have AMBAR, PREMIER, ROYAL GOLDEN CLUB, DIAMOND CLUB, etc...

2-) PREMIER HOTEL / Bedroom: The bedroom itself was great. It was like a Junior Suite, always clean, the bed was huge and the bathroom OK.
We asked our travel agent to book as Honeymoon, and so we have special gifs and decorations in our bedroom.
The resort has 5 or 6 hotels all inside the Grand Bahia. They put us in the PREMIER hotel, which i didn't like at all. It was the part of the complex farthest from everywere! Its in the oposite way of the beach!
If i would come back again i would stay in AMBAR HOTEL, near the beach and KIDS FREE!

3-) BEACH: I was there in July. The beach was overcrowded after 11h30AM til 5PM. I was always waking up at 7AM and going to the beach til 11h30.
The sand is white and clean

4-) SWIMMING-POOL: heavy overcrowded. The complex has something like 8-10 different swimming pools. Only in the beginning of the morning i could get into the pools. After that
The only pool i saw with less people was the private pool from AMBAR, which we could not get in as its exclusive from AMBAR hotel.

5-) STAFF: Mostly staff are nice and try to help. There are only a few very rude, but there are hundreds of people working there, so i must give positive review to this one also.

6-) FOOD/RESTAURANTS: At the end i should give a general positive review for food also. As soon as you arrive, you can make reservation for 4 tematic restaurants. That's something i don't like, having an exact day and hour to dinner when i'm in hollidays.
I recommend the japonese restaurant and the french one.
About the main buffet (internacional buffet restaurant), it has lot of variety and also big.
Sometimes they didn't let us in, when it was overcrowded, and send us to the buffet from PREMIER resort.
The variety of fruits is bad, we are in a tropical place and didn't like to have only 2 or 3 kind of fruits every day.
Also didn't like to NOT HAVE natural juices at breakfast, neither lunch or dinner.
The snack-bar near the beach is OK, but everyday same food.
When i stayed in RIU BAMBU earlier, it was much better in food quality.
Did like a lot the coffe and capuccino in the lobby, with some cakes. Very nice.

7-) TRIPS: Went to ISLA SAONA DELUXE TRIP, with chavon river boat safari included.
I went here also last time, ISLA SAONA is great, its a natural island inhabitated. This is really caribbean island, with transparent water and white sand.
Lunched lobster in the beach, which was ok.
Didn't like the chavon river trip, it was too noisy with people drinking and dancing all over the boat
I missed the diving/snorkel trip this time, which i recommend.

This is certainly a resort for holidays with friends or large family, not for romantic and quiet holidays.


Some tips: don't take EURO into Dominican Republic, just take American Dolars or take cash in ATM right there.
The exchange rate there is 1EURO = 1USD, and so you can loose 300EUR for every 1000EUR you spend, if you pay in EURO.
Renting a car is not recommended in DR, there are no traffic rules and people are crazy there.
Don't forget to leave all your money and docs in the safebox, and if you give some tip to the waitress and others workers, you will be served fine :)
I took about 100USD in 1USD banknotes to tip.


Enjoy your holidays, my final review for this hotel is positive, but if i return someday to Dominican Republic, i would go to SAMANÁ or other place less crowded.
Someone told me the holidays are what we make of them, so just enjoy your trip !!
Anything just PM me.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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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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English first
Enfield, CT
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2009

So before I came I read all these reviews from people, they are ALL over the map! I am 25 and not picky at all, I love to travel but don't stay at 5 star resorts, I just go for the sun, the beach, the drinks, the food, thats it! The place was beautiful, the staff was helpful and kept everything clean. The pool was beautiful and the swim up bar was great, I love them! The water in the pool was SO HOT, I jumped in and said "This is NOT refreshing at all!" but whatever we went in the ocean most of the time, the ocean is so clear and clean. The buffet had a wonderful selection, something for everyone, they did a great job there. The drinks, WATERED DOWN, it was so crazy, my boyfriend ordered a gin martini that was not gin, it tasted like flat sprite, so strange, stick with the beer, or ask for an extra shot of bacardi! The entertainment, was the best they could do, its very low rate, nothing spectactular at all, the vendors harass the crap out of you as well, they seriously get mad at you if you walk by and say not interested, they make rude comments like oh thanks for nothing [--]!!! So my boyfriend and I would find a route to walk by. There really wasnt many bars or places to hang out at night. You could go to the lobby or the kareoke bar, which was kind of dull. You also need to make reservations for the a la carte right when you get there, as they fill up very fast. Speaking of which, I was SO excited to go to the restaurants, our first was the Japanese, it was okay, nothing crazy, its a hibachi like in the states, well 4 hours later I woke up in screaming pain because I got food poisoning, I had to go to the medic who was helpful, but it also cost $500. He wanted me to go to the Domincan hospital but I would rather cut off my arm than do that. Anyways, I have been sick since that trip and just got better, I had to go to the hospital for 5 days and was treated for an e-coli kidney infection that stemmed from my food poisoning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This "could" happen anywhere but I would stay away from sushi at this place. I probably wouldnt go back because of this experience and because there really wasnt much to do at night and the drinks were so watered down. Overall, great beach, great weather, clean, and beautiful resort, very nice rooms, great buffet, and a nice staff but crappy, watered down drinks, lame entertainment, two, not so fun bars and FOOD POISONING! Make your own decision but I would probably look elsewhere. Sorry Bahia!

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Georgia
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2009

Having stayed at a lot of AI resorts my expectations are very high. Bahia Principe rates pretty . Don't be scared off by all the bad reviews. I was really worried about staying here after reading the reviews. The hotel is immaculate. The staff works so hard to keep it clean. The beach is beautiful, the wait staff are on top of things. We ate at the 2 buffet resturants by the beach. There was something for everyone. The Spanish restaurant is amazing!!! My picky eater children loved the lamb chops. Service was outstanding. We also ate at the Japanese (okay) and the Bar-b-que (pretty good). The large buffet by the lobby was not to my liking but my kids loved it.
The check in process was a nightmare. We had to wait 2 hours for our room! We kept being told "15 minutes", "15 minutes". The other issue is no one tells you what is included in the All Inclusive. When we wanted our free scuba lesson it was like pulling teeth. They wanted you to purchase a longer lesson.

My husband and I went down to the pool at 8 each morning, set up our towels under a hut on the beach and would have coffee at the beachside buffet before returning to the room to get the kids and have breakfast. It was really lovely. We didn't find it a problem to go to the beach or pool later as long as you don't mind sitting in the sun. Everyone leaves the beach and pool around 2 pm for siesta. We would leave the beach around 1, eat lunch and then head to the pool - while everyone was gone. We found the beach to be much cooler for hanging out.
If you can sail, take out the catamaran. It is really beautiful. The trick is to reserve it the day before (something else they don't tell you).
Over all a great stay!


Other than that it was great. For the price we paid we couldn't ask for more. We have friends that stayed at an AI down the beach and they hated it! If you want to relax and soak up the sun this going to do the trick.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
NORTH BERGEN
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2009

DONT JUDGE , u be the judge , before we left i read a lot of bad reviews.
arrived on July26- August 2,2009. Punta Cana side stayed in room15105 right in front of the pool area . The resort was very clean , the jr site was very spacious and very clean.
U get up early reserve your lounge chairs by the pool area , and no one touches your towels. The buffet food was very good the restaurant were awesome. The japanese was our top then the dominican the n the barbecue last was the grille.
the EMPLOYEES Treated us awesome .
U TIP The maids bartender, etc treat u better .
a word of advice book the restaurant as soon as you get there cause all the good hrs book fast. but we all had a great time , and would book this resort again........

Stayed July 2009
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
scotland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2009

The hotel was amazing, absolutely gorgeous. The staff were really friendly - the majority of them could speak good english. The a la carte restaurants were lovely - we had the choice of 3 per week. Our faves were the Japanese - (although we were at a table with another 10 people who didnt speak English, so not soo good) the Italian was amazing and the French was also lovely. Dont recommend the steak house as this was just another buffet or the BBQ on the beach - another buffet style dinner.
The resort is big but not as bad as some of the reviews i read, we were in block 16 so we had a 3 min walk to reception and 5 mins to the beach - but there is a bus that runs from the beach to reception area and comes every coup;e of mins - it runs from 6am til 3am the following morning for those who just cant be bothered walking.
It has a casino - not that great, a disco - all spanish music.
I loved the hotel but probably about 90% or even more were spanish, wouldnt recommend it if you were taking kids, unless they speak Spanish.
We done 2 of the excursions - Samou Island - definately recommend this - great day out on a speedboat, then luncha nd drinks at the island, then catamanran back.
Second one was the trip to Santo Domingo - DO NOT DO THIS!!!, It was a waste of money and a days holiday. 4 1/2 hrs on a coach to get you there - the Rep said it was no more that 3 hrs, then you spend 10 mis in some caves, then 10 mins in Christopher Columbus' Castle, 10 mins in a Cathedral then you get an hour on your own in Santo Domingo ( this was good though) then you are back on the bus for 4 1/2 hours back!
Another bad point was that the brochure is misleading saying it had 9 or so bars - the most of htese ar ebeach bars or pool bars which close at 7pm, then you only have the 1 bar to go to - in the lobby with a guy playing piano, not good im afraid.
Dont want to sound like im moaning - i just wish id knew some of these points before i went. I loved it throught the day - 10 out of 10, but at night we were bored!!

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Northamptonshire
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2009

The complex was beautiful and clean the staff work very hard to keep the plants and flowers looking nice.Food was excellent something for everyone.Plenty of sunbeds at both pools, Our villa was next to the smaller pool so we spent alot of time round that but the main pool had plenty of sunbeds too. Staff were extremley friendly especially the waitresses.it's worth leaving 5$ on your pillow for the cleaner as she looks after you very well extra stuff in your room.overall we had a fantastic holiday and would definatley go back again.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quebec
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2009

Hi,

Just got back from this place and the experience on our side was great. Food was good, rooms very clean, exceptional service and the staff was very easy going. Temperature was nice, no rain. Though, the beach has alot of sea weed and thus if you are expecting crystal water and sand, it's not there. You can go for a swim, but will be anoyed by the suspended items in the water. But then again, it is the ocean. Pools are very clean and the water is great.

I would go there another time and recommend it as a good vacation experience with a very good expense/expectation ratio.

Regards

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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 Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro

Address: Playa Bavaro | Arena Gorda-Macao, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#34 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#38 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#40 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#42 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Bahia Principe Bavaro 4*
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Punta Cana
Grand Bahia Principe Punta Cana
Bahia Principe Dominican Republic
Gran Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort
Punta Cana Bahia Principe
Gran Bahia Principe Bavaro Punta Cana
Principe Punta Cana
Bahia Punta Cana
Bahia Resort Principe
Gran Bahia Principe Dominican Republic

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