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“A beautiful adults only resort” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Catalonia Royal Bavaro

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Catalonia Royal Bavaro
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Bavaro, Punta Cana 837, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #43 of 101 Hotels in Punta Cana
Saratoga Springs, New York
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“A beautiful adults only resort”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed here 5/21-5/27. Our overall stay was excellent.

The food is great. We preferred the Royal side for all meals but we did have a good hibachi meal on the family side (even though it was so hot inside the restaurant). Our room was clean and we kept the AC on pretty much all the time. It did feel a little muggy in the room with the AC off but given that this place is in a tropical locale this wasn't surprising or annoying. I think some guests should read up more about the places they travel to before going so that they're not surprised by anything, but back to the matter at hand.

We loved breakfast in the main lobby restaurant. The fresh squeezed juices were excellent and they always cooked the omelets perfect.

The beach is gorgeous and we never had too hard a time getting seats. We liked going out early in the morning to see the sunrise and then having breakfast. The ocean is clear, clean and refreshing with a small man made barrier for good snorkeling. The seaweed is cleaned continuously by staff - I was a little nervous when I read reviews about this before going but now that I've been there I realized many people overreact in this regard.

The Infiniti pool with the beach cabanas was my favorite.

The drinks are always made great. Not 5 star Miami excellent but still great. We bought bubba mugs and brought them with us which the staff were always happy to fill.

Our bed was comfortable and the room was decent with a nice sitting area and balcony. I liked laying in the hammock after a shower.

We rented a moped from some guys down the beach and cruised into punta Cana using a map I printed off in the guest lobby. We ended up at soles which has one of the most beautiful beaches I've ever encountered. My best memories are from that day, minimal planning, unforgettable memories.

On the last night my boyfriend took me off the resort for dinner at Noah. We were treated excellent and the food was amazingly good. They provide one way transportation to their restaurant for free and you have to find your own way back. We paid for a $12 cab home. Such a beautiful time there.

I would return and would definitely recommend.

Enjoy.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 27, 2013
Dear Stephanie A,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal Bavaro, Thank you for choosing us for your holidays in Punta Cana, we are glad to receive your valuable feedback on Trip Advisor. We appreciate your valuable feedback regarding our facilities and services; we apologize for the setbacks presented. We will make sure to look into these matters for future improvements. We are delighted to know overall you had a pleasant time specially enjoying the beach and pool. Once again thank you for your comments we hope to be your choice once again in the near future.
Best regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Columbus OH
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2013

Hello!

We made it! We just returned from a week at the Catalonia Royal Bavaro (CRB) resort in Punta Cana.

First, who are we? We’re Teresa and Tim, and we live in Columbus, Ohio. Teresa is an esthetician and in her mid-30’s...Tim is an accountant and is closing in on 50 real fast! We enjoy traveling and have been on several cruises, as well as Las Vegas, Mexico, and Punta Cana once before (where we stayed at Royal Suites Turquesa). We also are Disney Vacation Club members and have been to DisneyWorld approximately 5 times.

Our last trip to Punta Cana was 3 years ago where we stayed at Royal Suites Turquesa (RST). We were sort of torn when we began to do some trip planning. We had a great time at RST and would have loved to have returned, but we also were anxious to try some of the other resorts that we read so much about. Inevitably, we’ll probably end up comparing the two resorts to a certain extent.

This trip was “extra special” for us because it will mark the first vacation since Teresa’s heart/kidney transplant. We knew “something” was wrong when we went to RST back in 2010, and spent the next two years preparing for and waiting for the opportunity at another chance at life. Teresa received her transplants in July, 2012, so we were simply waiting for that 1 year milestone before we could celebrate in earnest.

When planning, we knew we wanted adults only, a quiet resort, nice restaurants and a great beach. Did CRB deliver?...sort of...read on for the details.

I initially booked a superior suite through Expedia. They offered the best prices and best flights when I was ready to commit. After a few weeks, I began to consider upgrading to a deluxe suite, since it was only about $30 more a night. This would still make the vacation much cheaper than rebooking at RST. Well, the more I thought about it and the more pictures I looked at online, we decided to upgrade and reserve an exclusive suite with private pool--best decision I made on this vacation!!! We also reserved a wi-fi device through Gobecon and also arranged for private round-trip transfers through them since Expedia doesn’t include them as part of the package. This was the second best decision I made on this vacation. We loved having internet access on our phones whenever and wherever we wanted. We found that the free wi-fi provided by CRB was “spotty” at best, and non-existent in our suite or near the beach.

So, let’s break it down into sections...

Arrival

We had a 5:30 AM flight out of Columbus, connecting in Charlotte and arriving in Punta Cana at 11:30 AM on Saturday, September 14, 2013. We ended up not sleeping Friday night, which was a bit rough, but the flights went off without a hitch. We landed on-time in PUJ and had our tourist cards purchased ahead of time, which only saved us about 5 minutes in line. We love the airport at PUJ, it really seems to be an efficient operation. We were through immigration in about 15 minutes and our bags were already waiting for us. A porter had them in hand and had us out of the airport in mere minutes after that. The Gobecon rep was waiting for us with the driver and our wi-fi device. This was a very easy process and we were on our way and actually at CRB within 45 minutes of landing.

The Resort and The Room

I had emailed the resort the week before and requested a Suite between 3402 and 3405. I was thrilled when we were assigned Suite 3402. WOW. This is the first Exclusive Suite right next to the Grand Suite. What a location. You can actually see the Caribbean from the patio! We were already checked in and it was only 12:15! We were told to go have lunch and then hopefully the room will be ready...WOW again. We checked back around 1 PM and the lady simply smiled at us, handed us our keys and directed us to the bell desk. We were in our room by 1:05 PM. Now THAT’S a great way to start the vacation. This was without a doubt the simplest check-in process we have ever experienced! Everyone was so efficient, organized and friendly!

We’ve read some reports that the lobby was “unimpressive”. We thought it was perfect. There was plenty of room to relax as well as conduct your business. One end had the entrance to Thalassa, and the other end had the entrance to the piano lounge/lobby bar. The entire back wall was glass, and this led to an outdoor patio overlooking the main pool. We enjoyed relaxing in the lobby or lobby bar before dinner while waiting for a table.

While we thoroughly enjoyed the suite, the layout seemed a bit “odd”. We’ve never stayed in a two-story hotel room before so it seemed a bit unusual. As soon as you entered, the main hallway consisted of the sink/vanity and mirror. There was also the doorway to the bathroom, that consisted of a jacuzzi tub, a commode room and a walk-in shower complete with two shower heads. The first level also had the closet (with ample shelves and hangers), a living area, minibar and a huge flat panel TV (Panasonic). A stairway led upstairs and consisted of a very comfortable king size bed, an armoire for additional storage (we didn’t need it), a half bath and another, albeit smaller flat panel TV. A point of contention for us was the extremely poor lighting. The suite seemed “dark” all the time, and it was virtually impossible for Teresa to get ready using the vanity and mirror. The fit and finish of the suite was “good”...not great, but “good”. It could use a bit of refreshing and some routine maintenance. Nothing extreme, but when you consider the cost, you may expect a bit more. The primary selling point of these types of suites is clearly the outdoor living space. To us, this made our vacation. It was incredible. The entire back wall of the suite is all glass, and when you walk out the patio doors, you step onto a nice patio, complete with a glass-topped table and seating for four. Beyond this area is the private pool deck, where you have two chaise lounges, two side tables and an umbrella. Beyond that is your own, private infinity pool. This was INCREDIBLE. It was about 4 to 4.5” deep and probably 10 feet wide by 30 feet long. It was actually bigger than I expected it to be, and deeper, too, which was nice. What was especially great about our location is that we were right in the middle of the infinity pool and Sea Blue, which made for some great people-watching. We spent the majority of our time simply relaxing outside!

One surprise for me was the lack of “US-style” electrical outlets. All but two outlets (one by bathroom sink and one used for the upstairs TV) were the “round hole” type of outlets. I realize that we are in a different county, but I was surprised because we did not encounter this when staying at RST three years ago. Not a big deal, I just needed to be a bit creative about charging up our iPhones, Gobecon, camera batteries and MacBook, LOL. The “US-style” outlet by the bathroom sink was perfect for Teresa’s flat iron, so all was good!

We enjoyed the layout of the resort, and it seemed a bit bigger than we expected. We were disappointed when we discovered that the main pool was closed for part of the week for refurbishment because that meant that the infinity pool became the “defacto” party pool. That really wasn’t the “vibe” we were looking for when we reserved an exclusive suite. But, we feel that CRB did a great job of completing this work as quickly as possible, and also realize that maintenance work must be done “sometime”. It was funny to watch how the “vibe” changed on Wednesday, after the main pool reopened. By noon, on Wednesday, the music by the infinity pool changed from Reggaeton to Flemenco guitar music, there were open palapa beds, and probably fewer then a dozen people in the pool at any one time. It was SO RELAXING once the “party crowd” moved to the main pool. I thought the main pool looked GREAT and CRB did a wonderful job of refurbishing it. It looked like a fun, energetic atmosphere--something we probably would have enjoyed 20 years ago, LOL!

We loved how the resort had a tropical feel to it, with a LOT of palm trees. They really seemed to keep a lot of natural beauty when they built this resort. Living in the midwest most of our lives, we absolutely LOVE palm trees...they are a sure sign that we are ON VACATION!

We did venture over to the “sister property” a few times. I went walking once to take some pictures and then we went over there one evening for dinner. In all honesty, as pretty as this other resort is, we weren’t impressed with it. We just didn’t like the commotion, (or all the kids), and were grateful to return to the CRB very quickly. To me, the resort looked “cookie cutter” and one you have probably seen before in any other tropical destination. To me, it looked remarkably similar to the Iberostar resorts in Playacar (large, open-air lobby, lots of blocks of rooms in a natural setting, a large pool complex, then the beach). It wasn’t ugly at ALL...just seemed a bit “ho hum” to me. I guess it comes down to what you are looking for in a vacation resort. For us, Punta Cana is all about romance and reconnecting as a couple. When we want a family vacation, it will usually be Disney World. So, that being said, I’m sure that plays into why we feel the way we do about “the dark side”, LOL!

Restaurants and Food

This is a tough one because food is so subjective. We realize that this resort caters to a clientele that is typically not from the USA. We understand that and even appreciate that. We do enjoy trying different types of food, but our tastes do tend to trend towards the conservative end of the culinary spectrum. At the end of the day, I think the food was “OK to good”. Some dishes were very good, others missed the mark. I don’t think it was great, and I think in some instances they may overextend themselves a bit. Typically, we would order room service for breakfast, and then have lunch at Sea Blue. Dinner would be either Thalassa or Cata Tapa. I guess I felt that there simply weren’t enough choices. Granted, guests of CRB have the option to eat at any of the restaurants at the sister resort, but I don’t think that was really much of an option. First, they’re quite a far walk, and I simply don’t think the quality is worth heading over there. We did try to eat at the Teppanyaki restaurant one evening, but would have had to wait 2 hours for a table! We ended up eating at the buffet, and it simply wasn’t good. In making this claim, I’m comparing it to comparable resorts in Mexico, cruise ships and even the sister resort to RST--they all had better buffets than this one. Quite simply, we were disappointed. So, that being said, that leaves you with room service or Thalassa for breakfast, Thalassa or Sea Blue for lunch and Thalassa or Cata Tapa for dinner (room service is offered 24/7, but we prefer to venture out during the day to eat).

We thought that the room service breakfast was mediocre at best. We have pretty simple palates-we’re not picky eaters, but the fruit plates and continental breakfasts simply lacked any imagination! The fruit plate is limited to cantaloupe, pineapple and watermelon...no mango, papaya, guava, etc. The pastry selection was a corn muffin, a chocolate muffin, a plain croissant and toast triangles. It got old after a day...not to mention after several days. We tried to order their egg selections, but the idea of eating eggs from room service after they’ve sat for awhile to be delivered to our room by a bicycle just doesn’t appeal to us. Now, I’m not dissing the room service. I realize they have limitations and based on that we chose to limit how we utilized them. To their credit, room service was always prompt, friendly and very efficient.

We did go to Thalassa for breakfast a few mornings, and were actually very impressed. The pastry selection was incredible, and made me jealous that we couldn’t get that type of variety from room service! Their eggs were always well prepared and the other buffet selections were fresh and plentiful, including lots of tropical fruits.

We also enjoyed the Dominican buffet for Sunday brunch at Thalassa. Teresa has strong family ties to Puerto Rico, so we are very familiar with this style of cooking, and it was very good (Rice and Beans/chicken/roast pork)...it was GREAT!

Other than our arrival day, we chose to eat lunch at Sea Blue, because it was so convenient to our room and very casual. The menu, in our opinion, was “OK”. It wasn’t great, but they did try to have a nice variety of dishes. We especially enjoyed the mixed salad, and some of the sandwiches.

Dinner was a mixed bag...but overall, I think it was “good” with some OK and a bit of “really good” thrown in for good measure.

Let’s start with Cata Tapa. This is a beautiful restaurant. My problem with it is two-fold. First, their entree selection is very limited, consisting of approximately six entree selections and their appetizer “tapas” selection is too pretentious. At the price-point of this resort, I question preparing food utilizing methods that consist of molecular gastronomy, including gels, pearls, and foams. If I’m going to a 5 star restaurant in New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles, I get it...but at a mid-level all-inclusive resort---it doesn’t quite seem appropriate. Their entrees were “good” but didn’t really wow us. The pork ribs are a nice, slow-cooked rib with a sweet glaze. The veal is “similar” to osso buco but lacked some of the flavor and the quality of the veal used seemed lacking.

There were several fish dishes offered, but we passed because I noticed that I simply wasn’t fond of how this resort prepares fish. This is on ME, and not a slam towards CRB. I prefer my seafood to be “well done”. I’m not a fan of cooked fish that is still translucent. I tried it for lunch both at Thalassa and at Sea Blue, and opted to just pass on fish for the rest of the trip.

That leaves us with Thalassa. Overall, we enjoyed Thalassa. We felt their dinners were well-prepared, tasty, and presented at a relaxing pace.

One area we can’t find any fault with is the desserts. Wow! They were incredible! We loved “Chocolate 5 Ways”, the Sacher Torte, the Coconut Toast...all of it! Probably some of the best desserts we’ve ever seen at a resort. Oh, and the coffee. The Dominican Republic has some of the best coffee in the world, and CRB is no exception! It is always served nice and hot, with warmed milk if you desire, and they offer a wide range of coffee beverages (lattes, caps, etc).

The Beach

Ok, this is tougher than tough. This is where we simply must disagree with most of the trip reports on CRB. We thought the beach was terrible. Pure and simple...bordering on nasty. I grew up on the beaches of the Great Lakes, and have spent time in the Carolinas, both coasts of Florida, the Gulf Coast of Texas, both coasts of Mexico, Bahamas, and several other caribbean islands. Other than Galveston (sorry, Texas), this beach was the worst...we were so disappointed. First, we thought the beach was too narrow, with not enough sunny areas. The sand lacked the “sugar white” consistency that we’ve read so much about in Punta Cana , and even experienced at RST. The water clarity seemed way too murky and cloudy for Punta Cana. When I’m chest deep in the Caribbean or that part of the Atlantic, I should be seeing my feet. Then there is the sea grass. I understand that the staff is raking it up all day long...I applaud their efforts. But something just isn’t “right”. I’m not a scientist...but it just seems strange that you can go 10 miles north or south and be in crystal clear water with white sand, but here at CRB...it’s beige/brown sand, murky water and sea grass...acres and acres of sea grass with a LOT of it washing ashore 24/7. The beach appears to be almost in a “natural state”, which is fine...but I think it needs to be called what it is. It’s not a great beach for swimming, or frolicking or snorkeling...even with the sunken pipe. We’ll take a sugar white beach with clear water any day of the week, and book a snorkeling trip offshore to see some fish. End of rant!

The beach did seem quiet, but we didn’t notice many people enjoying the water. We’re wondering if others feel the same way we do, and opted simply to not go in the water.

We only encountered two beach vendors the entire week, and they were very unobtrusive and were actually very pleasant to speak with.

For being such a quiet beach, I wished the guy in the “glass bottom boat” would stop blasting Michael Jackson!

Service and Misc

We commend CRB for their INCREDIBLE service. Without a doubt, the best service we have had at any resort, and we felt it rivaled some cruise ships. Everyone was pleasant and friendly and the service when dining was very professional. We didn’t encounter any language problems that we read about beforehand. We were very impressed!

Teresa was also very impressed with the spa. As a licensed esthetician, she’s a harsh critic, and was very pleased with the quality and selection of services they offered.

We did attend the weekly beach party--and it was INCREDIBLE. The food was great, the service was flawless and the music was a lot of fun...”every day I’m hustlin”! The staff clearly made this the event of the week...! It was extra special because there was a full moon that night, which simply created the best atmosphere!

We did notice a few mosquitos at night if we were out on our patio, but it didn’t seem like a significant issue at all.

We were very glad that we opted to utilize the Gobecon wi-fi service. We had flawless service throughout the entire resort--beach, pool decks, room and restaurants. We noticed that we only had a CRB free wi-fi signal in the lobby. When I would scan other areas of the resort, I couldn’t even find the signal. If wi-fi is important to you while on vacation...use Gobecon--great service and very reasonable rates!

Summary

Overall, we had a good time at CRB, and it truly was a “worry-free” vacation for us. Would we return to Punta Cana? Of course we will...we’re hooked! Will we return to CRB? Hmmm, based on the cost of upgrading to the exclusive suites, I think we’ll try and find some other adults-only resorts, including a possible return someday to RST. In all honesty, the exclusive suite made our vacation. Since we were so disappointed in the beach, we ended up spending most of our days by our own patio and pool...and we loved it!

At the end of the day, we are beach people, pure and simple. For us, our “wants” and “needs” consist of white sand and clear water.

We’d recommend evaluating what your “wants” and “needs” are for a vacation resort. Do your homework, study pictures, and ask a lot of questions. If people keep bringing up the same “topic”, there’s probably a reason why.

Enjoy your trip planning, and we’ll hopefully see you sometime in Punta Cana!

We commend the management at CRB, because they are clearly doing something RIGHT. It’s a very well-run resort, with fine amenities and a GREAT STAFF. We only wish your beach was nicer.

Room Tip: Upgrading to a private villa with pool made our vacation!!!
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear TimandTeresa,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal Bavaro, thank your choosing us for your holidays. We appreciate your feedback on Trip Advisor regarding your recent stay. It’s a joy to read you were welcomed to the resort with the most friendly and efficient service, it was our pleasure to assist you. Thank you for your suggestions regarding our Exclusive Suites, we are glad to know overall you enjoyed the accommodations. We are sorry for the inconvenience with the main pool being refurnished our staff strived to promptly achieve the work. We are grateful for your valuable suggestions and comments regarding our restaurant services and facilities, they will surely be taken in consideration to improve our services. We are thrilled to know overall you had a pleasant and relaxing holiday, thank you! We wish to see you back for your next holidays in Punta Cana.

Kind regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
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Mystic, Connecticut
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

Overall we had a great week, but it started out pretty rough. We were beyond excited when we first arrived, just like most are when anticipating arrival in paradise. Imagine our shock when we waltzed into the lobby to a view of a 6ft high black tarp surrounding the entire main pool / pool bar, basically encompassing the entire area from just beyond the lobby / Thallassa to just before the spa. Not very paradisical!! Upon checking in, the front desk informed us that the pool would be closed (yes, and an eyesore of a construction zone) but the resort has 4 pools. I was quick to point out that we booked the adults only resort, NOT the sister resort, so we actually only had 2 adults only pools, one of which was closed. We did not book the adults only hotel to go to a pool next door with hundreds of children running around. She was so robotic and not the least bit understanding. I maintained my composure kindly requested a room closer to the middle of the resort so we weren't constantly looking at the construction zone, but they would not accommodate. It was just a bummer of a way to start our trip. We decided to try to forget about it, and that's exactly what I did when we walked down towards the beach, saw the infinity pool, grabbed a tropical drink, saw the gorgeous, calm beach and relaxed on a lounger.

From there on out, we had a relaxing week with gorgeous weather, a gorgeous beach, delicious (and strong!) drinks, and FANTASTIC service. The food is not anything to write home about, like others have said. I was a bit miffed when we went to the "dark side" to have dinner at the Italian restaurant and waited 40 minutes for a table even though we were told that staying at the Royal gave us "privileged" access and we wouldn't have to wait. It was useless to complain though. We quickly learned our lesson and stayed on the Royal side for the remainder of our trip. We enjoyed our dinners at Cata Tapa and Thallassa. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time for meals, because they do tend to take a bit. Like I said though, the waiters, bartenders, etc...are all so friendly and really go out of their way for you.

I definitely have to give a huge "THANK YOU" to Yesie, the Concierge. She really helped to make our trip special. She really listens to your needs and concerns. My husband mentioned that it was our anniversary and a few nights later we opened the door to our room to discover that it was decorated with balloons everywhere, an anniversary cake, bucket of champagne...etc...it was fantastic! She is truly a gem. I feel like if the resort had a few more people at the front desk like her, it would be perfect!

Additional thoughts: In closing, we had a very relaxing week. The black tarp wall was finally lowered one night, and at last, the pool opened so we were at least able to enjoy it for two days. The entire area looked so much more pleasant. The beach is fantastic. The snorkeling can keep you occupied for hours. You can always find a lounger in or out of the sun. If you have something more specific, wake up earlier. The juice bar is phenomenal. I really feel that they should open at 8am because their drinks could actually substitute as breakfast! One day I was feeling sort of crummy and I think the juice had some magical healing properties, haha. The room was very comfortable and looks just like the photos. Bed is cozy and our air conditioner was fine. No musty smell. Room service is a nice touch. Do not miss the nighttime beach party on Thursday night. It was wonderful!!! This resort has a fantastic international crowd and we loved meeting all the interesting people.

We still feel that it would have been nicer if the hotel could have compensated somehow for the construction zone / pool, such as an upgrade, room change, or spa credit. We also feel that there is a general lack of communication in regards to events going on between the two hotels. They say that we have access to both, but feel that they don't have any information about what is happening at the other resort. Oh well. We definitely think that for the price we paid, it was a good value. We wanted a week of relaxation in paradise, and we got it. We had read many other reviews, and I have to say that I echo most other reviewers sentiments.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 28, 2013
Dear KillaFee,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal Bavaro, thank you for choosing us for your anniversary holidays in Punta Cana. We are glad to receive your valuable feedback, please receive our apologies for the inconvenience during the main pool renovations, we are content to know once the renovations were finished you were able to enjoy both pools. We take important note of your comments regarding the restaurant services, we will make sure to improve in these areas. Thank you for your kind appraisal for Yeisi from Guest Service, it was her pleasure to go above and beyond for your special occasion, we will congratulate her on your behalf! In regards of the activities we have a board located at the lobby with the daily information, as well our guest service department counts with a guide of the Catalonia Bavaro activities. Once again thank you! We hope to have the chance to exceed your expectations in the future!

Best regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
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Columbia, South Carolina
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

We just returned from an amazing week at the resort

Despite the fact that the weather was rainy on the day we arrived- we were greeted with smiles all the way around from the shuttle driver to the clerks that checked us in, the gentleman that helped us to our room and of course all the bar and restaurant staff- especially Francisco, Dominga, Andy and Miladas.

Everyone was very patient with our limited Spanish and Miladas even endeavored to teach us a couple of phrases along with remembering how James likes his martinis and that we liked extra cherries in our mimosas at the lobby bar

The service at the beach bar/restaurant was awesome and Andy was always right on time with our next round of beverages and was NEVER without a genuine, huge smile despite the 90 degree plus days. In addition to providing great service Andy was personable and appropriately chatty.

We had intended to try each restaurant but were quickly spoiled by the staff at the Thalassa Restaurant and had the majority of our meals there. Dominga always greeted us with a smile and after a day or so, she remembered that we liked to eat breakfast towards the front part of the hotel and our other meals towards the back- she even knew when they had a particular avocado salad on the buffet that I enjoyed and made a point to let me know it was there:)

Francisco ran a tight ship at the Thalassa and even though everyone was working hard, they seemed to all be having a great time doing so. Along with Andy, Miladas and Dominga, Francisco quickly became someone that we looked forward to seeing at meal time and enjoyed chatting with him. The food was amazing and even though we were able to wear bathing suits/cover ups and swimming trunks into the restaurant, we were greeted with white linens, actual silverware and at least a four course meal option.

The room was perfect- always well stocked, freshly mopped and had very creative 'towel animals' that greeted us after a day of laying by the pool or on the beach.

On our second day on the beach we were already discussing, not IF we would return BUT when..... we haven't yet scheduled our return trip but the search has begun for the perfect time to have another amazing, relaxing time with wonderful people that we now consider friends.

Thank you so much for an experience that exceeded our expectations.

James and Terry Thorp
Columbia, SC

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

We return 2 years later to find a big banner on our hotel room door "welcome back"!!! Nice touch. Pretty much the same resort as we left it last time, minus one pool (the swim up bar one) that was under renovation. A bit disappointed about that since thats the default afternoon socializing pool. But Andie and Carlos at infinity pool bar made up for it with their sense of humor and smiles. Perfect room service and clean to the max, the maids deserve a lot of credit for their perfection. Credit also goes to the management of the hotel who is trying to maintain its status in an economy that appears to suffer from a case of resources crunch. Hope they make it. It does take special management talents to survive in this competitive environment and attract the Canadian, US, and most of all the Russian guests who appear to have appeared out of nowhere in the Caribbean (and good for them too!). Hope their expectations of quality are the same as North American's expectations. I could echo the "food" issue as other reviewers have, but I do keep in mind that we were not in Kansas anymore. So, expect the cultural differences between a steak in NYC and a steak in Punta Cana. But, can anyone complain about the desserts? I think NOT! Overall good week long stay to relax and get out of the routine a bit. We'll be back!

Some foot notes: Airport security in Punta Cana is a joke. All this checking and double checking has nothing to do with security, its all bureaucracy jobs. Sunwing has improved a lot with the new B737-800, a bit more leg room than what I remember a long time ago and more smiley crews. But their park-and-fly deal at Dorval(Montreal) is a bit of a joke, unless I didn't read the fine print right? Got a $25 discount instead of the whopping $69 discount on a $119 bill advertised for a week long parking. Dominican has added a $10 entry fee for each visitor (maybe its just Punta Cana? ) and the exit is $20 each. Hope they can fix the leaking terminal roof!

Room Tip: 3rd (top) floor rooms may have less water pressure during "rush hour", just before dinner...
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  • Stayed September 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 19, 2013
Dear TomGiorgio,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal Bavaro, it’s a pleasure to receive your comment on Trip Advisor, we were delighted to welcome you for the second visit. We apologize for the inconvenience with the pool, it was closed for renovations, we kindly confirm you its currently in service. We appreciate your kind remarks regarding Andy and Carlos; we will congratulate them on your behalf! Thank you for your overall feedback of our services, we look forward to have the opportunity to welcome you back soon!

Best regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
england
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

the main pool was been rebuilt ,the food was poor and cold in the main ,of the 4 themed restaurants only 2 open each night so had to queue to get in even when you are told that ROYAL guest do not queue ,the only smoking area is out side under a glass roof and every time it rains the water goes all over the seats and you end up going back to your room to smoke ,the only thing that the main desk staff seem to care about is a good write up on this site , there is no sign of any manager any were in this hotel , I will be writing to the travel company about this very poor hotel having paid what we did ,we have been to Cuba Mexico and other hotels in a different area of DR and all brilliant but this is more like a 3 star NOT 5 star

the only good thing I can say is that some of the staff are fantastic and will do anything to try and help with your holiday

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 19, 2013
Dear petwig,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal, we would like to thank you for your time invested in sharing you comment and for choosing us for your holidays in Punta Cana. We are disappointed to read we did not achieve our goal to exceed your expectations. We apologize for the inconvenience with the Thalassa pool renovations; we inform you it is currently back in service. We must clarify the resort also counts with the Infinity Pool plus the pool at our sister resort Catalonia Bavaro Resort which remain opened for our guest enjoyment. At Catalonia Royal Bavaro we strive to exceed our guest expectations, it would have been a pleasure to be informed during your holidays to assist you. We are glad to confirm overall your received a pleasant service from our staff. Once again thank you and we hope to have the opportunity to prove ourselves in the future.

Best regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sacramento, California
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2013

Very nice rooms, free wifi, nice clean 2 person tub, beautiful beach and pool. Very nice and helpful staff. Would give it a higher rating if the food was a little better. It was ok, but not great. Was my first trip to DR so I dont know if the food is any better at the other hotels, but some items were great and others werent very good.

I still highly recommend this hotel for a Great Vacation!

Room Tip: There are mostly couples at this resort.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CataloniaRoyalBavaro, Management Assistant at Catalonia Royal Bavaro, responded to this review, September 17, 2013
Dear Beidup,

Greetings from Catalonia Royal Bavaro! Thank you for your recent stay with us, we are content to receive your comment on Trip Advisor. We are delighted that our accommodation and services were of your enjoyment. We are disappointed to read our restaurants did not exceed your expectations; we take important note of your feedback for the continuous improvement of our services. Once again thank you, we would love to welcome you for a second excellent holiday!

Best regards.

Ysabel Sosa
Management Assistant
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Catalonia Royal Bavaro

Address: Playa Bavaro, Punta Cana 837, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#15 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#17 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#24 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#31 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#35 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#37 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Catalonia Royal Bavaro 4.5*
Number of rooms: 144
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Catalonia Royal Bavaro Hotel Punta Cana
Catalonia Royal Bavaro Punta Cana
Royal Catalonia Bavaro

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