First off, the only thing keeping me from giving this a 5 star rating is the food, which is good, but not great!
The resort is beautiful - well-maintained, lush landscaping, gorgeous pool, wonderful views - and everything is very clean. The staff is mostly very friendly and extremely attentive, especially the bartenders and servers. The front desk staff was efficient and helpful. Our Apple rep was also very helpful. It's only about 30 minutes from the airport as well.
Pools: The pools are great. Big, cool, lots of shaded sunchairs. The only negative is a lot of people seem to go down early and put down towels to "reserve" chairs, but we never had a problem finding somewhere to sit. There's no swim-up bar, but there are several bars right by the pool. One of the buffets is right by the pool, as well, which is nice for lunch.
Beach: Gorgeous! Lots of chairs with shaded coverings, soft sand, volleyball court...really relaxing and wonderful.
Entertainment: Always something going on, at the pool and beach, day and night. The entertainers are great and highly energetic. They put on shows every night in the theater by the lobby. We only saw one show, the Ideal Couple show where they brought up members from the audience and it was so funny! They have servers coming around getting drinks, so you don't miss any of the show.
Rooms: Our room was just a basic room, but it was nice. Clean, just big enough, nice water pressure and temp in the bathroom. The maids did a great job cleaning, and always left the towels in fun shapes with flowers, just a nice little touch.
Food: Like I said, good, not great. The breakfast buffet at the main restaurant is the best food. Lots of variety, really tasty. The lunch buffets (one at the main buffet and one at the restaurant by the beach) were ok. Just your basic buffet food -- pizza, burgers, rice, nachos, salad bar, etc. The buffet by the beach has a grill where they make porkchops, steak, pork belly, etc. That's very good. The rest is just ok. You need reservations for dinner at the main restaurants, and we ate at two, Marimba (seafood) and Maria Bonita (Mexican). Again, both were good, not great. You get a lot of food, though, which is nice. And really good service. The other night we ate dinner at the Star Rock Cafe, which is basically on par with like Applebees or Chilis.
Spa: We paid $100 for a 50 minute couples massage that was worth every minute.
Excursions: We booked one excursion, through Apple, to the Marinarium. It was $180 for the both of us and beyond worth it. You get to snorkel and swim with stingrays and nurse sharks, open bar on the boat, lunch (small sandwich, so bring a snack!), stop to swim in the ocean (with drinks!) and a very entertaining staff. It was really amazing!
Overall, the resort was pretty fantastic. Like I said, the only thing keeping me from giving it 5 stars is that the food is just good. Everything else was amazing!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Directly on the beautiful, sandy beach of Bavaro (Punta Cana). Colourful Caribbean flair. Water sports galore. All inclusive (generous, varied buffets for all meals). ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Punta Cana Iberostar
- Iberostar Dominicana Punta Cana
- Iberostar Punta Cana
- Dominicana Hotel