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“Great vacation at Bahia Principe” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Bahia Principe San Juan

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Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Carretera Gaspar Hernandez km. 18, Rio San Juan, Dominican Republic   |  
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Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Rio San Juan
newmarket, on
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Great vacation at Bahia Principe”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

We stayed at the Bahia Principe San Juan from April 11 to April 18. Having stayed at a Gran Bahia Principe in the Mayan Riviera last year, our expectations were a little higher than they may have been otherwise, despite allowing for the difference between a five star and a four resort. The Bahia Principe San Juan did not disappoint.

It was fairly quiet during our stay. As a result, a number of the amenities such as the beach bars were closed but this was understandable. We never had trouble obtaining seatings at the buffet or a la carte restaurants nor finding a comfortable palapa on the beach. I would love to go back and see the resort in full swing but enjoyed the easy accessabiiliy

The staff, although perhaps not quite as welcoming as we have experienced in Mexico, are friendly and accommodating. They work very hard and made our trip an experience to remember. The animation team are top-notch. They do an amazing job - pumping enthusiasm and energy into everything they do, no matter how many times they must do it.

Check in with a young trainee was efficient and pleasant. We weren't thrilled with the view from our Diamond Club balcony and asked if we might move to another room. Joel, was most accommodating and we were moved into new digs, with a lovely view of the beach, in no time.

Our room, although smaller than the junior suites we have enjoyed in the past, was clean, comfortable and more than adequate for our needs. Except for the day our regular housekeeper had her day off, our room was cleaned and made up by 11 AM every morning. The air conditioning isn't the strongest, but the temperature always cooled off beautifully at night. A few hours with AC on while we were at dinner cooled the room off sufficiently to be comfortable and we were able to sleep with the AC off and the balcony door open. Water pressure isn't overly strong but quite adequate (I have long, thick, curly hair and had no trouble rinsing out shampoo). I love a good hot shower and have no complaints about the water temperature. The coffee provided in the rooms is phemonenal! Loved it!

The food in the a la carte restaurants was good, as was the service. The buffet was as expected except that, at every meal there was at least one (usually more) stand-out item that made us say "Oh my God, that is SOOOO good?". The fish and chicken are particularly well prepared. The juice bar and egg/omelet station every morning are spectacular, as is the pasta station at lunch and dinner. I have never had calamari so tender as I had on two occasions in the buffet. The vegetables and pasta are cooked perfectly al dente. And, although it may sound odd, the deep fried beef is just awesome!

The animation team is second to none. These kids pump so much joy, energy and enthusiasm into everything they do despite the long hours they put in every day catering to over-privileged Europeans and North Americans (that would include me). They are absolutely amazing and will do everything they can to make your trip a memorable experience.

The beach is beautiful! We have been to Cancun and the Mayan Riviera, and this is our favourite beach. Long, sandy, gorgeous, clear water and beautiful surrounding terrain. Every day we were there was a green flag day. There are sand bags which take away from the view somewhat but they are they are doing the job they were intended to do - preserving and expanding the beach so that we may enjoy it now and for years to come. Having kept a close eye on Trip Advisor reports prior to our trip, I was very concerned about sand fleas but am very happy to report, neither my husband nor I had any trouble. The resort is very diligent in spraying every morning and evening.

We have no complaints regarding the beach vendors. They kept a fairly low profile and if we avoided eye contact, they did not bother us. If you do venture down to "Plaza India" at the end of the beach, be prepared for high-pressured sales tactics. Odds are, you WILL buy something whether you mean to or not. I purchased a number of souvenirs from Raphael and probably paid too much for them, but I paid no more than I was happy to pay and helped to support the local economy. You will find better deals in the shops up the road at the Pueblo Principe. I love this feature of the Bahia chain. You find all the souvenirs that you need at reasonable prices on site if you so choose.

We travelled with Sunquest, but were unable to catch up the Sunquest rep to arrange an off-site excursion. Joan from HotelBeds took very good care of us and worked closely with the Transat rep to arrange a half-day horse riding excursion for us. It was a $55 US per person excursion that was worth every penny. We loved it. The countryside was so beautiful I was moved to tears.

I would highly recommend a trip to Puerto Plata and particularly to the Bahia Principe San Juan. You will receive excellent value for your money. My husband and I hope to be fortunate enough to return someday.

Room Tip: Diamond or Gold section rooms with a beach view are the way to go!
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear Guest,

Receive cordial greetings on behalf of Bahía Príncipe San Juan. We would like to thank you for your loyalty to Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts chain. It is truly a pleasure for us to learn that you enjoyed your stay at our resort. We are very proud to have received your good comments regarding your stay with us.

We are glad that you have enjoyed all our facilities and services during your visit with us. We would like you to mention that this kind of review help us to improve and raise our service.

We hope to have you back in the near future at Bahía Príncipe San Juan and thank you in person. I take the opportunity to send a very warm greeting.

Kind Regard,
Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,964 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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English first
Guelph, Ontario, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

I came back April 25th from this resort. The first thing that our group noticed was the staff was A+. Especially Charlie at reception!!!! The staff went above and beyond their job duties. By the end of the trip the hardest part was saying goodbye to the staff as they became our friends. They layout of the resort was very nice, the large pool was clean and beautiful. Many spots at the main pool still had FREE wifi signal which was a MAJOR plus to this resort. We also met a couple that frequent the Dominican Republic and they said this was one of the nicest resorts they've ever been too. The food was nothing extraordinary, but honestly was pretty awesome compared to what I make/buy at home. No complaints! And the butter they served mmmmmm you must have the butter!!!! Lol. They also had food available if you missed the buffet times. The rooms were clean and tidy. The beds we had could have been better, we found ourselves super tired even after a full night of sleep. The drink fridge was fully stocked with water and beverages. My friend's iPod went missing though. I'm not sure what happened to it but I suggest using the safe for your valuables!!! Def try the excursions. The jeep excursion was amazing, the guides showed us EVERTHING! Great value for your money!!!

The only 2 major downfalls I can think of is the Location and drink selection.

The resort is 40 minutes away from Cabarete (which is a city you MUST go to at night, fun fun fun all the clubs are on the beach), and 50-60 mins away from the airport. I suggest to get a cab with someone else from the resort, it will be 70$ or so both ways (pay upon return). The resort's nightlife really depends on who's at the resort :(. The nightly entertainment is poor as well.

The drinks were limited to daiquiris, beer, piña coladas, bar shots, and there was no real juices to mix shots with. They were all sugar based drinks. The alcohol was cheap, and the drinks off the resort were 100x better!

Overall, for the price we paid we had an AMAZING time! I would go again for sure! And I would suggest this place for groups of friends, and even for couples (the private pools, and beachfront are quiet and peaceful - the main pool, not so much). If you want a resort that is perfect in every way then open your wallets and go for a 5 star (1000$+) Great resort for the money!

Room Tip: We were in the E's on ground level. Very nice :). Quick walk to buffet, 2 pools, lobby, tennis c...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear Client,

Receive cordial greetings from all the team working at Bahia Principe San Juan, especially from our Quality & Customer Service department.

We greatly appreciate that you have chosen one of our Resorts as your holiday’s destination.

We are satisfied to hear that you had an excellent stay in our hotel facilities and premises especially because of the friendliness of our staff members. Please be assured that it is an honour and a great compliment for us to forward such wonderful comments to all our staff.

We regret so much to hear if the location and the drinks did not meet your expectations.

We are looking forward to welcome you once again in our hotel and have the opportunity to continue providing the most memorable experiences.

Best regards,

Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

The staff at this resort is fantastic - even with a reservation/room error, they went above and beyond to rectify the situation and made sure the other family members we were traveling with where housed in the same area.
The rooms were ok - I've stayed in nicer, but they were clean and for the most part comfortable. Just a little worn and shabby in places. Our housekeeper was amazing - very friendly and did a very good job. The towel animals were always something to look forward to when returning to the room after breakfast.
The wait staff was great. Here's a tip: Tip your waiter VERY well at a breakfast meal and he/she will go out of their way to ensure all future visits to that dining room are top notch. We did this (on the advice of friends who stayed here earlier in the year) and sure enough, every morning we returned, the waiter waved us in (past line ups) and had a table ready and coffee poured before we sat down.
The bar staff was great - although drink selection was a little blah. If you like tasteless, sugary slush with weak rum, you'll like it. If we return, we will be trying to upgrade for premium liquor because I think it really does make a difference.
The second last day at the resort I began to feel ill. By midnight I was in/out of consciousness and vomiting badly. My husband called the front desk who promptly sent the resort doctor - I think it took her 15 minutes to get to our room (longest 15 minutes of my life). The entire doctor exam is a blur because I was so sick and given the amount of medication she was injecting into me, but the staff was great. They sent someone down with bottles of water, fresh towels, and ice chips. They also sent our travel rep a message so first thing the next morning she was at our door and making arrangements with my husband to extend our stay (doctor's orders to have me stay put) and take care of details. The front desk called from time to time to check in with my husband to see if he required anything and if so, they had a staff member there at the door within a few minutes with it. The doctor came back 2x a day until we were safe to fly back.

The grounds of this hotel are safe - a lot of friendly security guards on the beach ,etc. Some of the patios look a little past their prime, but are still functional.

I would recommend this place - despite the parasite. The prompt service and medical attention helped make a very bad situation a lot better.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear Guests,

Firstly, we are very grateful you have taken the time to express your views in our Tripadvisor community. The reviews help us to improve and raise our services as well as it will be really helpful for other guests that would like to spend their holidays with us, and we really thank you for it.

It is a real pleasure to us to get your comment. We are glad to know that you have enjoyed all our facilities and services during your visit with us. Also, we appreciate your compliments to our staff, as it is due to their effort and dedication that we are able to accomplish our goal - the total satisfaction of our guest. We are delighted to share your comments with all of them.


On the other hand, nobody is obligated to tip the staff, if clients are satisfied with the service received and want to thank the staff for the received service they gratefully accept the tips; but all clients do receive the same service independent if clients tip or not.

We also regret very much to learn that you got sick during your stay with us. Several factors may contribute to stomach diseases when people traveller to tropical counties such as: too much hours on a flight, weather & temperature variations at destination, excessive combination of food and beverages, excessive sun exposure, some individuals reactions, among others. Nevertheless, we must say that our guest’s safety and well-being are two of the most important priorities that we care about.

Once again, thank you so much for your review and we sincerely wish to welcome you again very soon to our Hotel Bahia Principe San Juan. We will be at your disposal for whatever you may need.

Best regards,

Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southampton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2013

Went from 7th April to 21st 2013, we were 2 famillies of 4, we all had a great time, very clean, rooms were always clean, the food was fantastic and the A la Carte restaurants were lovely, the waiters Rafael, Miguel and Raymundo were great, the animation tream were amazing, especially Alex, Carlos, Ratzinea, Edward just to name a few, they are so happy and hardworking trying to entertain everyone, we had 4 boys with us ranging from 15 to 12, they abosulutely loved the animation team. The shows were a little bit boring in the evening but they do try hard, overall loved the whole holiday and would definetly recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, April 26, 2013
Dear Guests,

Firstly, we are very grateful you have taken the time to express your views in our Trip advisor community. The reviews help us to improve and raise our services and we really thank you for it.

It is a real pleasure to us to get your comment. We are glad to know that you have enjoyed all our facilities and services during your visit with us. We appreciate so much your comments, it is through communications of this nature that we can know that we maintain the level of service expected from our clients, we are very proud to share your comments with all our staff.

Once again, thank you so much for your review and we sincerely wish to welcome you again very soon to our Hotel Bahia Principe San Juan. We will be at your disposal for whatever you may need.

Best regards,
Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2013

We have just returned on April 22nd from our 5th time at the Bahia, excellent resort, excellent staff, very clean, great room in the Gold Club, food was fantastic, wonderful service planning on returing time and time again, felt like our second home. Thank you to all the staff for making our stay one of the best yet in the Dominican.

Great value for your money, we have been to this hotel 5 times in the past 13 years.

Room Tip: Gold Club rooms awesome, ask for second floor great views, and being higher up will stop the little...
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  • Stayed April 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, April 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to give us such a good review of your stay at Bahía Príncipe San Juan in our Tripadvisor web page and share with our fans your experience with us.

You can be sure that there is no biggest reward for us than to get a message like yours knowing that we have exceeded your expectations. We are a family hotel and we do everything possible to make feel our guests like part of this great family.

Once again, we thank you for your comment. We are at your disposal for whatever you may need, please do not hesitate on contacting us in a future visit with us.

Regard,

Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miramichi
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

I went here with my family back in 2007 (I know, this is an old review and things have probably changed) but I feel that I should share the experience anyway. I remember that the layout was perfect, the landscaping was beautiful and the food was excellent. The rooms were great and the service was impeccable. The only thing we didn't like as much was the beach, we found it had a lot of seaweed and debris but the sand was nice. Although we keep going to a new resort every year, this one is one we'll keep in mind if we decide to visit one a second time.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, April 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you so much for such good opinion about our hotel, we really appreciate it.

We are so happy that you have enjoyed all our services and facilities during your stay in our hotel. This definitely strengthens our philosophy of seeking the highest level of service excellence, thanks to an arduous team’s work and the devotion and commitment of each member of our staff. We are delighted to share your comments with all of them.

We hope to welcome you once again in Bahia Principe San Juan. Please do not hesitate to contact us whenever you are planning to come back.

Kindest regards,

Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ste marthe sur le lac
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

nice week personnel smile and like every body,the pool at the beach you can spleep,we be there the 13 to 20 april suny week, the beer was very good and the drink too, the flight was with air transat,i think was the best compagnie

Room Tip: 2129 on the beach section 1 to 5
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Quality & Customer Service department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this review, April 24, 2013
Dear Client,

Receive cordial greetings from all the team working at Bahia Principe San Juan, especially from our Quality & Customer Service department.

We greatly appreciate that you have chosen one of our Resorts as your holiday’s destination.

We are satisfied to hear that you had an excellent stay in our hotel facilities and premises especially because of the friendliness of our staff members. Please be assured that it is an honour and a great compliment for us to forward such wonderful comments to all our staff.

We are looking forward to welcome you once again in our hotel and have the opportunity to continue providing the most memorable experiences.

Best regards,
Johanny Arvelo
Jefe Calidad & Customer Service Bahía Príncipe San Juan
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 Grand Bahia Principe San Juan

Address: Carretera Gaspar Hernandez km. 18, Rio San Juan, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Maria Trinidad Sanchez Province > Rio San Juan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Rio San Juan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Bahia Principe San Juan 3.5*
Number of rooms: 548
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 3 pools BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, tennis court, Minigolf, Football Pitch... Water activity centre Motorised sports (additional charge) WiFi access in the lobby (1 hour free per day/device) and in rooms (additional charge) Wedding gazebo Main restaurant and 3 specialty restaurants 4 bars Playa Grande Golf Course just 40 minutes from the hotel Convention / Meeting centre Pueblo Principe: shows, live music, bars, stores, karaoke, casino and disco Rooms 548 rooms including 2 types: Suite & Standard The Standard rooms are equipped with: King size bed or 2 full size beds Fully-equipped bathroom: Bathtub plus shower, wash basin, hair dryer and magnifying mirror Bathroom amenities Air conditioning Ceiling fan Safe (additional charge) Mini-bar (Restocked daily) Direct phone line (additional charge for external calls) Flat screen TV Coffee set WiFi (additional charge) The Suite rooms have the same equipment as the Standard rooms but also include: Ironing set Sitting area with sofa Pool towel available in room Bathrobe and slippers Evening turn-down service International newspapers Terrace or balcony Children Bahia Scouts The hotel is perfect for families, offering a range of facilities tailored especially for children, including the following: Children's pool Mini Club with daytime activities Evening Mini Disco Babysitting service for children aged up to 12 (additional charge) Other Services Medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Specialised service for organising weddings, incentive trips, events and anniversaries ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
San Juan Dominican Republic
Bahia Principe Puerto Plata
Bahia Principe San Juan Puerto Plata
Bahia Principe Dominican Republic
Bahia Principe San Juan Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic Bahia Principe
Bahia Principe San Juan Resort
Bahia Principe Sj
Puerto Plata Bahia Principe
Bahia Principe Resort San Juan

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