This is our first trip to the DR and our first trip to an all incusive resort. Any recommendations on packing or activites?
This is our first trip to the DR and our first trip to an all incusive resort. Any recommendations on packing or activites?
We will be back to Secrets for trip number seven July 23 to July 30.
to bad we won't get the chance to meet.
Secrets is a hideaway escape from the real world for us. We rarely leave the resort or want to.
Everything we need or want is right there. Romance, quiet, peaceful, no drunks screaming or making a lot of noise.
Top-notch service, spactacular food, amazing grounds, super beach, and the nicest people you will ever meet. My husband and I always reconnect with each other when we are there. It is impossible not to feel the magic and romance in the air.
There is romantic horseback riding in the moonlight, private champagne dinners on the beach under the stars and moon.
There are Romance nights provided at the resort where the whole lobby and entertainment area is candle light and they play romantic music. It is hard not to fall in love here.
The daytime is equally as exciting if that is what your heart desires. Try a helicopter ride for two and tour the Dominican countryside and spectacular coastline.
Like your feet on the ground? , then try the dune bogie tour, lots of fun as well.
There are many things to keep you occupied but we like
long walks on the beach or a sleep and cuddle under one of there many love huts.
HERE IS SOME SECRETS ADVISE THAT MIGHT HELP
Don't make phone calls from down there... you will get ripped off ,Make sure you open a hotmail account before you leave...What we did was open a hotmail account and give everyone we wanted to talk to at home a calling card for $10.00 and the e-mail address. We checked the mail daily and if we needed to talk to someone we told them to call us in the room with their calling card at a specific time.
This worked out very well and saved us tons of money that was better put to use on us.....(massages, spa stuff,pictures,flowers ect,ect).
We charged everything to the room and paid at the front desk. We felt that this was the best way to do it ,so you keep every charge in one place and it is easier to check them this way.... We had no problems at all and you can imagine the extra charges we had being our wedding and all.
The romantic pictures are very beautiful and the best photographer is Arturo (ask for him,great to work with) Not only did he do our wedding photos this April ,he also did our engagement shots last May/ 04 and it would be great for romantic honeymoon/anniversary shots as well, book early they fill up fast.
If you try and speak a little Spanish the staff really appreciate it, If you are nice to these people they will bend over backward for you.
Put a One dollar bill in your mini bar fridge each day and see what happens to the stock in there. Up Up UP it goes!!!
Some of our friends went on the horses and said it was amazing. They sell you a bottle of rum after the ride with your picture on it for $20. US.
We loved the excellence club honeymoonsuit.
Dont listen to what the other people are saying. First of all the rooms are diffrent, they are newer and more lavashly decorated,and in a quiter area of the resort.
There are slippers and housecoats (softer than in the other rooms) (we stayed last year in a reg ocean view suit)
You get to pick what time your maid comes to clean your room.
You have a pillow menu so you can pick from soft ,hard, orthopedic or feather pillows. The room service menu is larger.
There is a private club with lots of goodies to eat and a great breakfast as well. There is free internet access and they call your room everyday to see if there is anything they can get or do for you.
Also there is a DVD player in your room and an extensive selection of DVD's in the Excellence club louunge for you to choose from. Add to this private conceairage service, A fully stocked mini bar, private check in and out, and anything your heart desires. If that is not worth the extra charge I dont know what is......
We will be back next year for our 3rd time. We have stayed in a regular room and in the excellence club as well....
WE always go BACK TO THE EXCELLENCE CLUB.
There is also excellence club garden view, (the rooms there are very beautiful mountain view and ponds with fountains) We have stayed in the regular and excellence club rooms and until you have stayed Excellence club you just can't compare.
It is worth the money,they really pamper you and the section of the resort is nicer in the Excellence club area.(the whole resort is beautiful) I just prefer the quiter newer area of the Excellence club.
The romantic dinner on the beach is $160.00 .although we did not do this ourselves..... our bestman and maid of honour did ........and they both said it was very romantic !!!!!
Some of our friends went on the horses and said it was amazing. They sell you a bottle of rum after the ride with your picture on it for $20. US. I also heard that the bavaro runners (4 wheelers) is an amazing trip and lots of fun. (bring strong bug spray just in case)
Breakfast: 7:00am – 11:00am…World Café (buffet). We never ordered room service…always ate at World Café. The World Café is located parallel to the Front Desk. There were made-to-order omelets and eggs (see Felix…a nice guy who makes wonderful omelets), pancakes, French toast, oatmeal, cereal, potatoes, bacon, sausage, ham, an array of fresh luncheon meats and cheeses, fresh fruit, freshly squeezed tropical fruit and vegetable juices (had a bottle of Absolut and champagne close by if you needed a morning pick-me-up with your juice), bread pudding, various rolls and breads (toaster available), several pastries and donuts, etc. Raphaelina was an excellent hostess. She greeted us with a wonderful smile and escorted us arm-in-arm to our table everyday. She is a sweetheart. What to Wear? We wore shorts and a t-shirt to breakfast every morning. You can wear your bathing suit, but you need to wear a cover-up and sandals.
Lunch: 12:00pm – 4:00pm…Oceana (menu)…Seaside Grill (menu)…World Café (buffet). A special lunch is cooked on the beach from 12:30pm – 2:00pm every day (weather permitting). We usually did not eat lunch…too full from breakfast. We did take a sample of the lunches cooked on the beach (Philly cheese steak, ribs and chicken, fajitas, paella)…were tasty. A few days, we did get a couple of the brick oven pizzas and took them to the bar for a mid-afternoon snack…YUMMY! What to Wear? You can wear your bathing suit, but you need to wear a cover-up and sandals.
Dinner: 6:30pm – 10:30pm…Bordeaux, Da Mario, El Patio, Himitsu, Oceana, and Seaside Grill. One night per week (weather permitting), a party is held on the beach from 7:00pm – 10:00pm…food and drinks are served. What to Wear? Men – Dockers, shirt with a collar, and close-toed shoes. Women – Skirts, skorts, and capris with a lightweight sweater or nice shirt, or a sundress, with sandals. Do not wear jeans. Note: there can sometimes be a wait to enter some of the restaurants…be patient. They will take your name…go have a drink…it’s just like at home at your favorite restaurant on a Friday or Saturday evening. The longest we had to wait was 25 minutes…no big deal!
Bordeaux (Continental / French) – Located next to the Showtime Bar in the building housing the theater. It was excellent. We had a special dinner arranged by a staff member of Dominican lobster and filet. I usually do not like lobster, but this was so sweet…the texture was perfect. We really enjoyed our meal. The onion soup was the best that I have ever had. The chateaubriand was also wonderful. There is usually a long line for this restaurant, so get there early.
Da Mario (Italian) – Located in ½ of the World Café. It was very good. There is a buffet with several Italian dishes and a made-to-order Pasta station. The tomato sauce was very creamy with a hint of spice. I asked them to make me gnocchi with garlic and butter…"no problemo"…was great. You can also order off of a menu…ask for it if they do not offer it to you.
El Patio (Mexican) – Located in a separate building across from the Cascading Pool. You can eat outside or inside…very romantic setting. We did not eat there because we do not like Mexican food. But, I heard several guest say that they enjoyed their dinner…authentic Mexican fare.
Himitsu (Asian) – Located in ½ of the World Café. We did not eat there because we do not like Asian food. I heard that the sushi was not good, but the tempera shrimp and fried rice were fabulous.
Oceana (Seafood) – Located adjacent to Seaside Grill and the Main Swimming Pool…is open-air. We had surf and turf…was good. This menu is all seafood…salmon, calamari, etc.
Seaside Grill (Steakhouse) – Located adjacent to Oceana and the Main Swimming Pool…is open-air. We had the filet and ribs…both were great. The mashed potatoes were creamy. Our friends said the mixed grill was awesome! The soups were unique, but good. This restaurant is dark…ask for an extra candle at your table.
Room Service is 24/7 (except pizzas until 2:00am). We ordered room service on our first night…overindulged at the bar in the afternoon…too tired to dress for dinner. We had no problems conveying our order to the person on the phone. The order arrived error free in 40 minutes as promised. It was pretty good. Some of the items on the menu include: turkey sandwich, chicken sandwich, brick oven pizza, pasta, salad, cheesecake, chocolate cake, chips, fried plantains (yummy), etc.
There are bars everywhere: Palapa Macao (Cascading Pool); Lobby Bar (see Santa); Showtime Bar (Theater); Kafe Café Bar (Santo Domingo Plaza…see Benjamin); Swim-Up Pool Bar/Manatee (Main Swimming Pool); Palapa Nisibon/Sugar Reef (on the beach by the Main Swimming Pool); Sports Area Bar. There are also bars located inside most of the restaurants.
hope this info helps
Sorry forgot the packing list ......................
Oh ya when you arrive at the airport in Punta Cana there will be two girls dressed up in Dominican costumes and you have to have your picture taken with them before you go to customs. The picture that they took, they will try and sell to you upon your return home at the airport.....Usually very scary looking shots after a long plane ride.
HERE IS A GREAT PACKING LIST
First the clothes
You will spend most of the day in a swimsuit . (Bathingsuits / Pareos / Scrunches, 2 of each)
So concentrate on outfits for evening.
Evening men wear long pants and shirts with sleeves.
Women wear sundresses or dress slacks. (mostly dressy Capri's)
Women seemed to dress up more than the men. Many of the men casual dress pants with golf shirts.
During the day you can wear shorts but you have to wear a tank top or blouse... no bathing suit tops and you have to wear shoes.
The one thing I wished I had brought was a little sling purse, for the evening, to stash a few bucks, and lip stick in. Since summer dresses don't have pockets, it would of came in handy.
Now the nick nackey stuff
Get a cheap watch to throw in your beach bag to see what time it is. I know we were on vacation, but we were with friends and often had places we need to be at a certain time.
More sunscreen -- we barely made it 3 different levels.... we used 40 spf then 15 spf and finally 8 spf....
I brought sandals but wish I had comfy flip-flops
Antibiotics -- we did not need them, More piece of mind than anything else.
Vitamin c for sore throat and sinus medication (you never know what you might be allergic to down there)
Bring some antihistamine pills in case you do get bites, you don't want to be up all night scratching.....
Strong bug spray with deet for the nights when there is no wind. (especially spray your legs.)
TONS of $1's - for tipping. You can get change at the front desk but $1,s are hard to come by.
Imodium -- Also suggest pepto if that works for you,although we did not need it.
Beach bag -- we brought an old bag with us to carry sun screen, books, etc. Very helpful. We left for the maid when we left -- it had the Canadian flag" on it. she was so proud.
Pre-printed notes to give gifts for the staff. ALL things were appreciated and the notes are needed to get through security. The staff needs to "prove" that they were given something.
Tampons -- in the gift shop it was $20 US for 16 tampons
Big insulated mugs -- we brought HUGE mugs (50oz.)actually called "Bubba Kegs" They were a big conversation starter and the bartenders loved them so we left them with them. We found them at Wal-Mart for $10US.
Fanny pack - great for excursions to hold water, sunscreen, and money.
Spanish/English dictionary. pocket size. Very helpful when I broke a glass in my room and needed to tell the maid so she would not get cut and to try to get her to clean our room first (which she did)
Q-tips, and tons of vitamin E cream for burns....works wonders,don't bother with aloe Vera because they are growing wild all over the place there and if you need a piece cut it and stick in the bar fridge to get cold.....AMAZING REMEDY>>>>
Small plastic spray bottle to fill up with water .Great when your on the beach and you just wanna cool off and you don't want to go to the ocean for a swim.
A mini first aid kit......band-aids/ stomach remedies / aspirin / chapstick (for protecting lips). All these things
Sorry you asked now right. LOLOL Have an amazing time and save some sun for me.....
Terry aka SB
Thank you for the detailed information. I found your posting very helpful! We are quite excitied about the trip!