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JackieMRP

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farmingdale, ny
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JackieMRP

Hi Jackie,

I wanted to know how are the theme buffets in SC? Did you go to any of them? Seafood buffet, in particular? Thank you.

Pennsylvania
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1. Re: JackieMRP

They're awful!

Rochester, NY
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2. Re: JackieMRP

chakkare,

From what I remember, we weren't crazy about the food at the Beach Party. We loved almost all of the food at the restaurants, but the Beach buffet didn't thrill me. There were plenty of selections, though. Also, it was held right on the beach & it was a REALLY windy night, so it was hard to eat w/ my hair blowing into my mouth !! I have a pic of one of our friends & her hair was almost sideways w/ the wind !! Anyway, the Mexican night was held in the main restaurant off of the lobby & that food was pretty good. It wasn't ALL Mexican food, so you had a little bit of a variety.

Jackie

farmingdale, ny
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3. Re: JackieMRP

Thanks. What about the seafood buffet? Do they have lobster and shrimp and was it any good?

4. Re: JackieMRP

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Boston, MA
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5. Re: JackieMRP

Hi Jackie: thought I would pose this question to you as you seem to have gone to a couple of the Secrets resorts. We are heading down May 9 for 8 days to SERC. Since it is my big 5-0, we spent the extra $$ for Ocean View update and Excellence Club; probably a waste, but..

Two questions: what is dress code in restaurants at dinner? Please tell me we don't have to get dressed up every night. We are definitely the casual type; would nice capris work or is a sundress more appropriate.

And finally, I've heard everyone talking about top-quality alcohol, beer selections, but I'm a wine drinker. Do they serve wine; are there choices by the glass?

Two years ago we went to Iberostar Paraiso del Mar; they served wine from a ap! Yuk!

Thanks, Pegster

Rochester, NY
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6. Re: JackieMRP

Pegster,

Sorry for the delay -- I've been too busy to log on all week !!

Dress Code: Nice capris are just fine for any of the restaurants, w/ nice tank or short sleeved shirt. Men have to wear long pants & closed toe shoes at some of the restaurants. Nice docker/polo/nautica...-style shorts w/ either a polo or a nice short sleeve button down-style shirt are ok at the other restaurants. I didn't notice many shorts on women at dinner. And I didn't notice many t-shirts or casual tanks at night either.

Wine: Yes, they do serve wine by the glass. Some nights at dinner, they just left the whole bottle on the table. The selections included in the all-inclusive are nothing special, but they're good enough for me. My husband is a bit more of a wine snob & he even tolerated the wine. You could also purchase bottles of wine from a menu & they charge that to your room. Definitely no wine on tap at Secrets !!

We're also leaving on May 9th for 8 nights (our 2nd trip to SE Punta Cana) !!

Have a great birthday trip !!

Jackie

Hi Jackie: thought I would pose this question to you as you seem to have gone to a couple of the Secrets resorts. We are heading down May 9 for 8 days to SERC. Since it is my big 5-0, we spent the extra $$ for Ocean View update and Excellence Club; probably a waste, but..

Two questions: what is dress code in restaurants at dinner? Please tell me we don't have to get dressed up every night. We are definitely the casual type; would nice capris work or is a sundress more appropriate.

And finally, I've heard everyone talking about top-quality alcohol, beer selections, but I'm a wine drinker. Do they serve wine; are there choices by the glass?

Two years ago we went to Iberostar Paraiso del Mar; they served wine from a ap! Yuk!

Thanks, Pegster

Pittsburgh...
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75 posts
28 reviews
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7. Re: JackieMRP

This is for JackieMPR as well! Jackie, I see that you have been to ASP and Secrets Excellence Punta Cana. I have been to ASP twice and loved it, but I was thinking of mixing it up this year and heading to SEPC instead. What are your thoughts on the two? If you had your choice of both, which one would you pick?

I would appreciate your insight--thanks!

Rochester, NY
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308 posts
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8. Re: JackieMRP

HRHSMS,

I'll give you my mini-comparison betw/ SERC & ASP (in which I, overall, favored ASP)(there might be weird character marks since I copied/pasted from Word). But, seeing that you've been to ASP a few times, I say why not give something new a try ?? So many resorts, so little time !! SERC was very nice, but Secrets Capri was just awesome in our opinion.

Just a note, after today I won't be checking the boards til Wed May 18th (we'll be sunning ourselves w/ drinks in hand at Secrets Excellence Punta Cana !!). (If you click on my screen name, you can see my past replies on this board).

Also, here's a link to my vacation pics (I can't remember if I put this earlier in this thread -- I hate that when you 'reply' you can't see the whole thread !! ): http://photos.yahoo.com/jmrperotto

Jackie

Secrets Excellence Riviera Cancun vs. Aventura Spa Palace

My husband & I have been to both & enjoyed both. We were at ASP in May 2003 & SERC in Jan 2005. I guess I���ll give my opinions area by area���

FOOD: For us, ASP wins. The food at SERC was pretty good, but, of the two, we liked ASP���s food better. At SERC, no meal jumped out at us & made us say ���Wow��� after eating, and the menu selections & desserts didn���t impress us too much. We were at Secrets Capri in May 2004 & that was our favorite of any all-inclusive we���ve ever been to (we loved the desserts there, too). We were really expecting more out of SERC after we got spoiled at SC !! Also, there was 24 hour Room Service at both.

POOLS: I guess, for me, it���s a tie betw/ the two, w/ maybe a slight edge to ASP. Both had really nice pools & were spotless. The pools at SERC were freezing cold (& I���ve always been a pool person even w/ cold water), but that may be because we were there in January. One pool (by bldgs 7 & 8) was heated & that was very comfortable. We were at ASP in May, so that may be why the pools were comfortable. Both had waiter/waitress service by the pools & beach. When we were at ASP they had towel cards, so only one towel per person, but that may have changed since then. No towel cards at SERC���you can use as many as you want.

ROOMS: Definitely SERC wins here.

Our room at ASP (1337) was very nice: king bed (in our room), 2-person in-room Jacuzzi, mini-fridge, liquor dispenser, big shower, only one sink, toilet was in w/ shower. The room showed some age, however.

Our room at SERC (Room 6034, a Swim Out, non-Excellence Club room) was terrific: king bed, 2-person in-room Jacuzzi, 2-person Jacuzzi on the patio, mini-fridge, HUGE shower (probably 5���x 4���), dual sinks, separate shower/toilet areas, cheesy soft-porn channel that comes on approx 11pm-4am (SE Punta Cana had 24 hour Playboy). The resort is brand new so nothing has really aged yet.

SERVICE: Service was about equal at both ASP & SERC. I would give a slight edge to ASP, probably bec/ SERC is new & they are still learning. We really had no major complaints at either resort. We seem to find that we always get better overall service in Mexico (been 8x) than in Jamaica (6x) or St Lucia (2x) or Bahamas (1x). Secrets Excellence in Punta Cana had great service as well.

BEACH: Well, since ASP has no ���real��� beach, I guess SERC wins this one.

Since ASP has the man-made lagoons on each side, you can���t take long walks on the beach there, but we didn���t feel we lost out because of this. The lagoon area was kind of nice since you could always go in the water w/o worrying about it being too wavy.

SERC has a very nice natural beach. The water isn���t perfectly clear (like in the Playacar area), but, on calmer days, it was a nice blue. The sand was nice & soft. There was some sea grass that washes up on shore, but they frequently are raking it up (w/ a tractor). If you walk south from SERC, Puerto Morelos is about a 45-minute walk. We also walked north, past the Paradisus, quite a long way. Both directions were very nice walks & we didn���t notice much debris at all along the way.

OVERALL: We really did enjoy both resorts. ASP is huge, but we never felt crowded at all. We went to ASP w/ 6 other couples & everyone really liked it. SERC was very nice as well, but we felt that since they really hype up the romantic aspect, then they should not have conventions here. As I stated in my SERC vs. SC review: on our last day @ SERC, a group of a few hundred people were checking in for a convention & were extremely loud & obnoxious (i.e. they had a table set up in DeMario's for about 40 of them & they were shouting back & forth to each other & shaking their rattles). I don't really blame them so much as Secrets. They advertise peace, tranquility & romance, & a convention hotel cannot achieve that -- you can't have it both ways !! If I had to pick one to return to, I guess I would pick ASP over SERC.

Pittsburgh...
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9. Re: JackieMRP

Actually, Jackie, I am looking at Secrets PUNTA CANA, not Riviera Maya...I know this is the wrong forum, but I wanted to get your attention--and I saw that you had a thread named after you! Quite a compliment, I think!

So, any comparisons between ASP and Secrets Punta Cana? I look forward to hearing how this next trip is too!

Thanks again,

Sam

Rochester, NY
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308 posts
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10. Re: JackieMRP

Sam,

See my reply on the Punta Cana board !! Sorry !! :-)

Jackie