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“Truly a Garden of Eden for Naturists” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Caliente Caribe Resort & Spa

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Caliente Caribe Resort & Spa
3.0 of 5 Specialty Resort   |   Abreu, Cabrera, Dominican Republic   |  
Hotel amenities
New York City
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
“Truly a Garden of Eden for Naturists”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2009

Two years ago we had heard of Caliente Caribe in the Dominican Republic and its prior existence as Eden Bay. We had heard that it had become a bit run down; but last year heard it had been bought by the Caliente, Tampa investors, and was on the way back up. We went there last year and were pleasantly surprised. The staff was very good and service and attitude were excellent. Last year when we arrived, the front desk person was Karina and she was particularly attentive meeting our needs as we had special requests regarding our unit location. The entertainment staff was a lot of fun and Angela and Lucy made the evenings enjoyable for all guests. If you didn’t know how to dance, to Latin music, you did by the end of the evening - with Lucy and Angela’s help. Lucy and Angela regrettably were gone this year. Last year it seemed Caliente was fixing and upgrading a lot of things, apparent in just in the one week we were there. They had a new manager, Joey and I assumed the improvements were his doing. We were looking forward to returning this year and finding it significantly better.

Because we took a liking to our casita location, we requested one in the same location. But when we arrived, we were assigned one, in a completely different location. Interestingly, when sitting on the beach, we mentioned it to other guests and found that several other people had the same experience. Some were even lifetime Caliente Tampa members (so we didn’t feel quite so bad that our requests were ignored). We found a lot of people had requests that seemed, I have to say, ignored. We spoke to the front desk manager, Maggie, who denied knowing about our requests and even told us it wasn’t her responsibility. We later learned she is definitely the person in charge of room assignments. We found she was really not at all competent in the job. Although she doesn’t seem to have the language skills, the personality or the presence to command this kind of position, her lack of interest in the well being of the guests is the most disturbing deficit. Interestingly, there were several young men at the desk who were highly competent, intelligent and went out of their way to meet our needs, Jaime, Franklin and Juan. Jaime, in fact was passionate in his interest in insuring the happiness of the guests. Maggie, as it turned out, during our stay, was rarely seen, (not something you would expect from a manager). But, it was probably better for guests that she was rarely there, as she wasn’t helpful when asking anything of her anyway. Her office was always empty. Usually when she was seen, she was there only for a meal and didn’t interact with the guests unless approached. Once when I needed her, and asked other staff when she worked, nobody seemed to know; but they did offer to call her if I wanted her. Not to belabor the issue, but we also felt she didn’t dress appropriately. She should wear professional attire, like a resort management person would be expected to wear. This also was the case with Joey, the general manager. He was always wearing shorts, tee shirts, flip-flops and caps on backwards. Neither certainly didn’t garner much respect from the guests, and as it became apparent, from their staff. Conversely nearly everyone else was dressed appropriately. Wait staff were always spiffy, as were housekeeping and grounds people nicely uniformed. I forgot, Alex and Marley, the entertainment guys also could use a better physical presentation, Marley has dreads and wears tattered jeans and Alex street clothes. Nothing that would identify him as a member of the Caliente staff.

Last year the food was good, not great, but acceptable. This year when we arrived it was perhaps a 4 on a 10 point scale – ten being the best. Often food is either under cooked, over cooked or cold. Hot food was put on cold dishes, etc. Canned sauces and over ripened or under ripened fruits. Also, as salads are often served they need to get a variety of lettuces. Breakfast never came out properly prepared. Cold scrambled eggs, tasteless omelets, well mucus-like soft boiled eggs, cold syrup on fruit crepes, oatmeal the consistency of loose baby food. Breakfast is usually a hard meal to screw up. Lunch had a new menu each day, which was fairly limited in choices. We’d recommend they have a special menu each day, but also keep a basic menu. Also curiously, none of the food is very spicy or reflecting of the Hispanic or Caribbean cuisine heritage. Dinner menus also have limited choices. There just didn’t seem to be any quality control. We discovered there is a new chef, and the quality of the food and variety did seem to improve as the days progressed. Let’s hope it continues.

Most of the wait staff is the same as last year. It was nice to see most of the same people still there. I could mention some, but that would be a disservice to others. Absolutely every one of them was excellent and they worked in teams to satisfy the needs of the guests. We can’t say anything at all critical about them. They all spoke enough English to understand most of the guest’s requests. And they also have a system where the headwaiter or head waitress (who speaks better English) takes the orders to insure they get it right. During the meals, various staff was always at one’s elbow with coffee, juice, wine or whatever -depending on the meal. No one lacked for attention. Ah, speaking or the staff, it should also be noted that we would recommend modest tipping at the end of your stay. Five-ten dollars per waiter given to them personally - to be sure they get it. Although the resort is “All-inclusive” they work, it appears, 10+ hour shifts and six days a week and Dominican pay is embarrassingly little. We tried to give to absolutely everyone who served us during our stay.

As far as the accommodations, ours was in fairly good condition, a few minor repairs were overlooked, and they could be decorated a better. Nonetheless they were fine. Most important to us, it was very clean. I stress that, as I think cleanliness is paramount for most guests. I compliment the housekeeping staff. Also, I had occasion to peek into the kitchen after dinner one night. All food was put away and the place looked so clean it appeared the kitchen wasn’t even in use. Bravo!

The hotel is basically on two levels: Upper level has reception, main dining room, disco, exercise/gym, cool swimming pool with swim up bar and entertainment lounge, and separate hot tub. There are two buildings each three floors with rooms or studio rooms. There are two tennis courts on the upper level. The lower level has individual casitas which, I believe are mostly two rooms – bedroom and living room. This level also has a beach bar, beach, heated pool, heated volleyball pool and another hot tub. There is also shuffleboard and beach volleyball. And of course, the beach. The beach is somewhat small, but nice sand and plenty big enough for sunning and swimming. Bring beach shoes however, as once you get beyond the edge, the bottom has a lot of broken coral.
There are areas of the resort that needed maintenance attention. For example, the steps between the upper and lower levels need to be power washed as they get mildew and slippery from the humid weather. The visible side of the building housing the kitchen needs washing or painting. And the roofs of the casitas and the pool bar need a new coat of paint. The grounds are kept in good condition and are extensive. Big enough for a cardiovascular power walk without leaving the resort.

The bathrooms at the beach bar are ready for renovation. But I will say, housekeeping cleans them often. The lounge chairs at the beach, at the pool and at the rooms all need a thorough cleaning with some strong bleach and a power washer or scrub brush.
Entertainment, although amateurish, as is the case in many resorts, is enjoyable, engaging, and is different every evening. And, the performance generally lasts for a couple of hours; definitely a plus. Some performances are better than others, and they have a magician that is really, really good. The disco music gets boring, with way too much heavy base - boom, boom, boom. Guests often requested softer music, albeit rock, but their requests were rarely honored. The disc jockey needs to be sensitive to the music preferences of the guests. If the guests are sitting around and not dancing, it generally means they don’t like the music. Staff needs to remember that the majority of the guests are upwards from 40-50 years old. The disco facility itself is very good but the staff needs to be vigilant that the air conditioners are all working at their fullest.

Generally there are enough towels, but they do run out and sometimes there is a half hour wait. It’s an odd system. On the upper level you must ask for towels at the reception desk. Down below at the beach you just take them. At neither location are towels assigned to you. Notwithstanding, you can have as many as you want. Ample towels are important as one needs them often to sit on when unclothed.
The gift shop has some nice local things and the manager Alduino is terrific. No pressure to buy and if he doesn’t have something, he will get it. He even had some earrings made for one guest. However, the shop needs to be straightened up and most of all needs better lighting. The existing light bulbs they use appear to be about 60 watt and most are burned out. It’s a challenge to see what you are buying.
There is wireless internet throughout the resort, but, although my computer said the connection was good - to very good, - the loading and response time was very, very slow. I’m sure it’s something that can be worked out with a skilled technician. There is a computer in the main building available for guests, but even though it appears to be hardwired with an Ethernet cable, it too, was very slow. It’s very old and needs to be replaced. Although we were told there is no cell service and we could rent phones or use a calling card, we got reasonably good Verizon cell service.

Getting to Caliente is easy. Puerto Plata (POP) is about 1 hr. 20 minutes from the resort. But, once you arrive, you are met by a private taxi, provided by Caliente. This is a terrific benefit the resort provides. Sit back and enjoy the scenery. It’s a interesting and beautiful ride as you go through a half dozen villages. Although the round trip taxi is free, provided by Caliente, a $5 tip for the driver is appropriate.

As a repeat guest I’ve overlooked some things I now take for granted. It is a clothing optional resort. Wear or don’t wear what you want - anything goes. One will always feel comfortable with other guests. Caliente is a naturist resort and we never either saw nor suspected any inappropriate sexual activity. Although a Catholic country the staff is very accepting. They treat you like you are fully dressed. Never an uncomfortable look. Ninety-nine percent of the guests come with partners. The occasional single (usually male) is an oddity. In our experience they are less welcomed and some do make some guests uncomfortable with inappropriate watching. For our part, we think they should go to singles resorts.

Last, and an important reason to go to Caliente Caribe is the location. It was previously called Eden Bay and it’s just that. It’s a Garden of Eden. A beautiful, lush cove on the water. Very private, and with no textile resorts or non-naturists around. Not the all too typical island resort where one can’t tell if he’s in Aruba or Mexico. It’s a truly exotic setting. And if you are lucky you see a spectacular show of whales breaching, spouting and playing just off the beach. We recommend you give Caliente Caribe a try. It’s not perfect, but it is a wonderful way to holiday in a natural and au natural setting.
(After writing this review I heard from a guest that Maggie has been replaced by a very competent person as the Assistant General Manager)

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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
Atlanta
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2009

As we all know the Caribean is beautiful! This resort is at a beautiful location. The property is post card perfect. The rooms are large and old. The renovation is going on, new stone in the bathrooms but leaving the old furniture. Not a terrible thing but not for someone trying to rate a resort class A, with a class C mentality.
I believe that since the property is beautiful they belive that it will make C work look good. Everything else there was mediocre, except Orlando! A broken pool table, one kayak as water sports. Did some one say the food was good? They must be a Shoneys fan or Waffle House! It was very mediocre at best. The staff tryed hard! The crowd went to bed at 10 pm. I thought the reports written below were made by friends of the owner there was not much good report, other than the crowd, bein NAKED, and the employees.
I asked to be moved to another room upon arrival, I am still waiting for an answer! I asked two managers! So go to Hedo, Gran Lido or Hidden Beach if you want a naked vacation!
This was a very average experience, if you have low expectation please be my guest!

  • Liked — The view
  • Disliked — Old and the food.
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
alberta
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2008

Great place to stay the rooms where very clean and the food was A+ with allways a choice for those that are a little fussy. The grounds are well kept and clean which is more than I can say for the rest of the country.This was our 2nd time there and are booked in again in Feb. The staff are some the best that we have ever dealt and we have spend a fair bit of time in the Caribbean.We can not say enough good things about this place and allways look forward to go back( it is like going back home). Any nudist or people who just want to try it once will love. Alberta

  • Liked — Staff and the food
  • Disliked — Getting there
  • Stayed February 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Upstate NY
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2008

What a great time. It was a very relaxing experience. The staff was absolutely wonderful. We met a group of people from different continents and quickly bonded. The manager was around everyday to see if all our needs were met and treated us all like family. The food was plentiful and consistently high standard with all meals served a la carte with different offerings at each meal each day. The grounds were breathtaking and the facilities kept spotless. The staff was friendly and willing to answer all of your questions. It was truly a naturalist ultimate experience. For anyone who maybe wonder, we did not experience any swinging activity. We were all over 40 years old and some people had been there before and we all felt, it was the best vacation every!!!!! We are planning to all return next year and enjoy this piece of paradise again.

  • Liked — The staff and Manager
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Land O Lakes
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2008

The resort is a excelent value for people looking for a clothing optional adult only vacation. The pools are in great shape, the accomodations are excelent. My wife and I had an great time and made a lot of friends. The food was worderful and the wait staff were just great. There is nothing like sitting in the hot tub at night situated on the ocean with a near full moon lighting the sky and looking up at all those stars -- it was amazing.

The rooms are all air conditioned and beds were solid and well maintained. A little more hot water in the morning and the they need to clears some of the rocks out in fron of the beach -- they have been doing that and now have a tradition of people painting the rocks with names and sayings -- it a wonderful tradition that is making the place more people oriented.

Caliente has put 100's of thousands of dollars into the resort to bring it up to a high standard of quality -- If you are looking for a rustic vacation on the cheap look somewhere else -- this is a class resort that is only getting better with the investments being made.

To disclose a little of who I am -- There were 40 or so of us from the Caliente Tampa group -- yes I think we might have got special consideration because most of us are members at Caliente in Tampa and as such know the management team well. Just like at Caliente in Tampa the same rules apply -- no drugs and no sex in public areas. The couple I saw with inappropriate behavior were not with our group and were spoken to by management at the request of people in our group. I have never seen drugs in either venue and believe that people are openly attacking the Caliente management for decisions they have made to enhance their bottom line. If you are looking for a HEDO experience -- you better go to Jamaca because it isn't in the Domincan Republic or Land O Lakes either. Nor will it be despite the unfounded rumors.

  • Liked — Clothing optional -- no kids -- Staff is great and over all experence is wonderful
  • Disliked — The beach needs some work to remove rocks in front.
  • Stayed July 2008
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, FL
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2008

I too was a traveler from the Tampa group. I'm NOT a swinger and I'm very much single. I had a wonderful time and felt safe and welcomed the entire trip by our group, the other guests, staff and management. I agree with what CalienteCpl said. The one troublesome incident I witnessed occured outside our group and was quickly taken care of. I had an EXCELLENT vacation and would go back again without hesitation as a single, with a group or with someone special! It was an amazing trip and Caliente will do a great job as they have in Tampa! It is unfair to judge a resort by a couple of people that are behaving out of line.

  • Liked — The amazing views
  • Disliked — Limited options for breakfast and lunch.
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2008

We also were at the resort as a part of the Caliente Tampa group and we have to say we met a lot of fun people and had a great time.

There were over 50 people at the resort from Caliente Tampa. We arrived on Friday and received excellent treatment from the whole staff at all the breakfast, lunches and dinners we attended.

We had to request something in our room to be fixed and it was fixed within minutes. The activitiy cordinators did an excellent job to involve everyone in volleyball, karaoke etc.

The service staff at the restaurant for dinner were excellent and very friendly.

We did see one couple acting inappropiately and it was addressed swiftly by management.

  • Liked — The surroundings
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 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.

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Additional Information about Caliente Caribe Resort & Spa

Address: Abreu, Cabrera, Dominican Republic
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Maria Trinidad Sanchez Province > Cabrera
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty lodging in Cabrera
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Caliente Caribe Resort & Spa 3*
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Caliente Caribe Hotel Cabrera
Caliente Caribe Resort And Spa
Caliente Caribe Resort & Spa Dominican Republic/Cabrera

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