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“A great time, may go back, but for a different kind of trip...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa

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Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playas Uvero Alto - Provincia La Altagracia, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #32 of 99 Hotels in Punta Cana
GreenLeadersSilver level
Rolesville, North Carolina
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“A great time, may go back, but for a different kind of trip...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2010

Our travel agent had informed us of the Dominican building requirements for number of floors, proximity to the water and natural flora species that must be in place, so we were expecting to have a partially obscured ocean view, but it was still blissful and allowed the sounds of the ocean to enter our room when the windows were opened. The rooms were nicely appointed and consistent with my expectations from prior international travel experiences. The building layouts do make sense from the standpoint of minimizing walking distances and maximizing the number of rooms that technically have an ocean view; however, at the cost of privacy. Our initial room, 7305, had a decent view of the ocean, but an even better view of other guest rooms as well as some minor disrepair (broken thermostat dials, shower pan sealant, broken electrical outlet). We requested a different room, which the staff was very helpful with (Thank you, Magalis), and after moving to room 6304 we had a well appointed room with a slightly more obscured ocean view, but no other guest rooms in sight (for this trip we valued our privacy higher than breathtaking views - although in the past we have been able to experience both, albeit at a greater cost).

Our trip was for a romantic vow renewal. While there were a number of ways to inject romance, including a lovely ceremony, large jacuzzi on suite balcony, a private beach front dinner (additional expense), and the general ambiance of a Caribbean getaway, the overall feel of the resort was more geared toward fun and family experiences. The resort grounds were lush and well maintained lending to a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere. While this was a family resort children were never intrusive, owed greatly to a smart layout and a bevy of activities designed for them. There are rules of dress and conduct posted; however, they were marginally (if it all) enforced. There were a handful of topless sunbathers, who where generally discreet; however, it is a family resort and is expressly forbidden. There was also a couple groups of wedding revelers that had extremely loud (and very inebriated) conversations, including some distasteful language. It was short lived, but still detracted from the romance, and would have been a much bigger issue had we brought our five children. As far as children go, they were generally unnoticed and never intrusive, owed largely to the assortment of staff-led activities and play areas designed exclusively for them.

The food can be broken down into three categories: selection, quality, and experience. The selection was on par, if not a little better, than my expectations of an all-inclusive resort. The themed restaurants had decent menus with a good variety and the buffet changed some of their choices daily, while some of the staples remained. The quality did vary somewhat, the Bordeaux restaurant (adults only) wins hands down for best overall dining - the food was delicious with top-notch presentation, the wait staff was timely and cordial, and the atmosphere was serene and romantic, lending itself to a fabulous and intimate dining experience. Himitsu (the Pan-Asian) restaurant has teppanyaki style experience that falls far short in all categories even more so when compared to a similar themed restaurant like Kanki. Granted, it is a single themed restaurant in a Dominican resort; however, the "show" was lacking, the food was bland, and there wasn't really a choice in what was prepared - the saving grace was lively conversation had with other guests seated at the same grill. The bakery does deserve a special mention, the breads were simply amazing and our wedding cake tasted and looked fabulous (although my wife did come across a few pieces of eggshell). The wait staff created a bit of a mixed experience, always helpful and polite, but not always timely - overall we had positive experiences with only 3 or 4 out of thirty experiences where a drink order would take 10-15 minutes to return, or be forgotten completely. Neither my wife nor I drink alcohol - which seemed to take most of the staff by surprise - so we usually had orange juice, water, or soda, not complex drink orders that would require a wait at a busy bar. We definitely preferred the american-styled first-come, first-served as opposed the reservation system of most all-inclusive resorts. While we were there, we never experienced waits of more than a few minutes to be seated (after asking I was told the resort was a little over 80% capacity) so it wasn't just that we were there during a slow period.

The staff was always very friendly and courteous, there were a handful of occasions where the obviously-part-of-the-staff-training "it's a pleasure" response felt a bit rehearsed and insincere, but their actions were always helpful. The entertainment team far exceeded any expectations either of us had. There were always lively activities to be found ranging from yoga on the beach, sports, quite impressive shows, to wacky competitions with guests. The entertainment team was always smiling and funny - we were going to try and smuggle Wilbert out in our suitcase! After comparing the rates with online excursion providers with operators found on-site at the hotel we were surprised to find the on-site providers to have better prices and have the advantage of have a live representative in case any issues arise. We went on two off-property excursions and had a wonderful time at both; however, do be prepared to haggle quite a bit if you visit any location with a tourist store. We had one fellow try to sell as a photo album for 80USD - the same style was available in the hotel shop for 20USD - he begrudgingly accepted 800DRP, which is a little over 20USD. It was an interesting experience, but definitely do not be afraid to go VERY low knowing you will need to come up a bit to close the deal - or just avoid it altogether and just buy from the hotel shops.

The Preferred Club perks were well worth the marginal extra expense, between the free internet (otherwise as high as 4USD/min), the better quality hors devours, the larger towels without requiring checking in/out, the free movie check in/out, business center (great for printing out travel documents), the dedicated concierge, and the dedicated bar which always had plenty of cold water and soda (and also stocks better quality liquors). There was never really a problem with getting a lounger or even a bed on the beach area, but the preferred club area ensured access to either of the above (including padded loungers) and was in a quieter section of the beach - away from the ocean trampoline.

Overall, we had a great experience at Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa, many wonderful memories were made and we are very happy with our choice. Knowing what we do now, we may have opted to do our romantic vow renewal trip at a resort that specifically caters to couples, but we have also discussed how much fun it would be to invite our siblings (all over 25) to go back to Dreams as a group. This really is a large compliment as we tend to explore the world and not revisit the same location more than once.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    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
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English first
North Bay, Canada
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2010

We were part of a group of more than 30 adults and children who attended our son's wedding at Dreams in late September. The pagoda was a great setting for the wedding. Photos of the actual ceremony turned out poor due to light problems and the weather conditions at that time of the evening, but everything else was perfect - the rain clouds even went around us!

Loved the general setting for the resort. and the pool was awesome. The grounds were very claen and well maintainedI, as was the pool. I love the ocean, but my wife isn't a fan of salt water swimming, so we spent a lot of time in and around the pool. Watch your step in places along the Dreams beach when you are going into the ocean - difficult to see some nasty pieces of coral or rocks. There are some nice snorkelling opportunities nearby if you want to go for a short walk. Don't swim alone.

The various bars provided speedy service, but there were sometimes great differences in the the same drink recipe/mix from one bar and bartender to another. The lady who served our drinks from the pool bar did a fantastic job of keeping our gang from getting thirsty.
Most of the staff were very courteous and helpful, but the language barrier was a bit of a pain when dealing with a lot of the staff - from the front desk to the cleaning crew. Restaurant and bar staff were very good in all respects. Enloyed being served and entertained by "Oscar the Grouch" in Himitsu restaurant .

We enjoyed the a la carte restaurant meals, and despite other guest comments about the World Cafe being another typical buffet,, we thought the selection of foods offered was very good.

Maid service was very good - when she could get into the room. We went one day without any maid service at all. Why? Lots of problems with door locks and cards not working in our room - and many others as we eventually found out. We were locked out of our room 4 out of the 7 days we were at the resort. Spent most of one afternoon trying to get someone to fix the problem. It took two maintenance men three efforts to get the lock to work, and then it didn't work the next day. It was so ridiculous - a Groundhog Day scenario. We were told not to carry our room key next to our camera. Guys - did you change the battery in the lock? It was useless trying to complain, as the manager responsible "Was not available." Actually, NEVER available.

Our room was well suited to our needs and wasn't small as other visitors seem to occasionally complain about. The bed was good, the bedding and furnishings were clean but stained a little. Went without TV the first day - disconnected and remote missing. Remote was replaced then went AWOL the next day after room cleaned . Some beautiful flower arrangements in the bathroom and on the bed the last 3 days in the room. Mouldy smell is a problem in some rooms and certain areas of the hotel. The gift shop reeked. Had to keep the noisy fan running in our bathroom and have the A/C fan running on low to reduce the smell in our room. Room temperature was still great for sleeping. We didn't notice the odour any more when we left, but when we opened our suitcases at home, wow, what a stink! Even the money that I brought back in my wallet smalled bad too.
There's lots of activities to enjoy at the resort, and a variety of other adventures to participate in at a fair cost outside the gates. We had a great time on a catamaran snorkelling/booze cruise, and a fishing trip the next day was quite memorable. Turned out to be quite a rough day and we only caught one small barracuda, but it was a fun day.

Caught a couple of the evening shows, which were pretty good, and dropped a few bucks in the casino.

Montezuma's revenge hit a couple of our gang. Not sure what caused it. Lots of bottled water available, and with one exception, we thought food quality and food handling was very good (Beach BBQ cook didn't look too clean one day and burgers being served weren't properly cooked).

Value for $$$ spent - very good. That's one of the reasons why we would go back again, despite some of the problems we encountered. Maybe we'll bring our own lock next time - just in case :-)

To the whiners who definitely won't go back, and wouldn't recommend Dreams; get a life - pay a pile of money and go visit somewhere else ..... then complain about that place too!

  • Stayed September 2010
    • 5 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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new london, ohio
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2010

My new husband and I spent 6 days at Dreams Punta Cana on our honeymoon. The entire experience could have been fabulous if the food was better and the quality of the air conditioning was better. Communication and accomodations was amazing. Staff were very friendly and the resort was very well manicured and clean. It is hard, however, to have a great time on vacation when the food is terrible. The resort staff really did try to present the food and make it good, but it was just totally different than American food. With that being said, if you like to eat good... DO NOT GO TO PUNTA CANA! Also, it is very hot and humid there and the air conditioning is very different than US air and everywhere you go, you sweat, sweat, sweat! I think it is also important to note, that everything is pretty much outside with the exclusion of the rooms, therefore, its hot when you are trying to eat, have a drink at the beer, or watch a show. The beach is also not that nice, but the pool is great. 2 thumbs up to the excursions. All and all, just average and will probably not return

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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
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Beaver, PA
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2010

We had the best trip ever. it was our first get a away together and I could not have planned a better week. The staff and Entertainment Team was AMAZING!!!

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2010

I scoured trip advisor prior to our trip to Punta Cana and I was very surprised when I arrived. Check in was a bit hectic as we arrived at the same time as another large group. However Raul was amazing and showed us to our room and also helped us find our friends who we lost as their room was ready upon checking and our was not. Even though the room was not ready we were able to grab lunch at world cafe and tour the resort. The room was much better then I expected. It was spacious, modern and clean. The AC worked great, but it did leak a bit and I wish our room had a bath tub. Besides that the maid service was efficient and very friendly. We spent most of our time in the pool are a next to the swim up bar. The bartenders and waitresses were very great - no long waits for drinks. The food was pretty good. Our favorite was the hibachi and the sea side grille. Also the beach dinner that apple vacation had for us was amazing. I have to say the entertainment team at dreams punta cana is incredible. They work so hard and there day never ends. You see them when you pick up your towels at 8am and they are in the disco at midnight getting everyone to dance. They never stop! We were a bit hesitant to go to the shows at night, but we enjoyed everyone one of them. Western night, the magic show and night of the stars were our favorites. We stayed for 7 days and I was so sad to leave. Thank you to the following staff for making our vacation so special: Raul, angel, Simon de Los Santos, gasolina, salami, edwardo and Louis. Thank for the great service, wonderful memories and all the laughs.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Manchester, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2010

We have just returned after a two week holiday and have had a fabulous time , like everyone else i read the reviews and i think that i have been to somewhere different than these other people . We ate in all the restaurants we didnt have any problems the food was excellent and there was plenty of it . The entertainers put a great show on every night they were well worth watching especially the night of the stars the guy who does michael jackson was brilliant .The rooms were comfortable no problems at all, we were provided with clean sheets every day ,clean towels twice a day and a turn down service at night which included chocolates on our pillows which was a nice touch .The grounds are beautiful and are kept immaculate ,each morning we opened our patio doors and were greeted by three peacocks sitting on our terrace . The pool area was kept spotless ,plenty of sunbeds you didnt even have to go to the bar for a drink they were brought to you at regular intervals .The staff were all excellent they were always smiling and they couldnt do enough for you nothing was too much trouble ,the hotel managers should be proud of their staff they work so hard to make your holiday an enjoyable one . I really couldnt find fault with anything other than having to leave i would definately go back for another visit .

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 1
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Galway, Ireland
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2010

Whatever you may from other people, this is the review to look at. Too many people complain unnecessarily about little things, nitpicking and so forth; this is a good hotel.

The service is at all times excellent, friendly and open with a good level of English among most of the staff. The quality of the entertainment was a particular surprise, although this would not normally be something that we'd be interested in. The cocktails, as you can imagine, were excellent!

The food was generaly very good. We loved the French and MExican restaurants, but there are plenty of other things to eat too. The only food complaints were relatively minor: the cheese at breakfast was not good, while the house wine and the local and US beers were quite revolting. A particular good surprise was the quality of the meat which was outstanding in every restaurant and at the beach barbecues.

The hotel is big enough for you to have multiple hoilday experiences. YOu can stay alone and there's plenty of space for a quiet time. Alternatively, there are plenty of ways to mingle and get to know people between nightclubs, bars, acticities, etc.

The location of the hotel could be a problem. If you are looking to get out of the premises for shopping, clubbing, restaurants, local colour, etc. (we weren't!) then this is not the place for you. The hotel is quite isolated, which can be wonderful, just make sure it's your thing. Either way, there's plenty to do and there are plenty of trips to take in the hotel.

On the trips, we would strongly recommend the Saona Island trip. The Santo Domingo trip is probably too far and tiring although it was very interesting.

One thing to be aware of: The hotel shops are VERY expensive. Bring any drugs, lotions, underwater cameras, etc. that you think you may need to avoid it.

All in all, well worth going to for the chipper staff and the great food.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa

Address: Playas Uvero Alto - Provincia La Altagracia, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#18 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#27 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#27 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#28 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#31 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#42 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 620
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Secluded in a lush tropical paradise, Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa features one of the largest free-form swimming pools in the Dominican Republic, stretching from the lobby all the way down to the pristine beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dreams Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Sunscape Beach Punta Cana
Punta Cana Sunscape Beach
Dreams Resort Punta Cana
Dreams Punta Cana Resort
Dreams Dominican Republic

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