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“Consider yourself warned”

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Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort
Ranked #12 of 39 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Canada
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Consider yourself warned”
Reviewed November 10, 2012

We had never been to the DR before, so we were kind of flying blind. The pictures looked nice, and while the reviews were mixed, we figured we'd give it a go. We arrived on a Saturday and were dropped at the front of the hotel in the midst of hundreds of locals thronging at the entrance - now this came as a bit of a shock to us, and you need to be aware of it. This hotel sells day passes and overnight passes etc. to the local yokels. I'm definitely not against people having a good time and letting some steam off, however, that being said, when you're just there for a day or overnight, you have a lot less vested interest in being civilized and respectful than someone on vacation for a week. It's the equivalent of letting the motel 6 crowd run amok at the ritz-carlton. We put up with two days of screaming, shouting, yelling, hundreds (and I mean hundreds) of the locals' children..the building we stayed in had paper thin doors interconnecting the rooms and we were kept up until 2,3 and 4 in the morning with raucous noise. Then, we were awoken multiple mornings by people banging on our door and phoning the room despite the do not disturb sign out - this would have been the timeshare guys looking to rope us in. Anyways, we left a day early (to avoid the friday afternoon/night onslaught of local yokels again) and moved down towards Cabarete to another hotel to maintain our sanity, but I would say that we had maybe 3 nights of 6 that were relatively quiet and peaceful. It's a shame, really, the hotel grounds are very nice and the multiple pools are great..too bad you can never really enjoy it. The food was average, as was the service. One thing that did bother me was at the buffets only about half of the food is covered with sneeze guards..many items are just in big heated pots or are left open...we either stayed away from the buffet altogether, or made sure we were there just as it opened so that we wouldn't have to ingest food that had been manhandled and sneezed on. We would absolutely return to the DR, but we would absolutely never stay at this property again. You have been warned.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank CroozerCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed November 9, 2012

Im a shareholder, this is my home away from home. This has been the first time i have went to this beach, the 1 and only Sexy Blackie got me into shape with the morning stretches! Sat in the shade with Sexy Banana cause the weather was hot, had a great time meeting him for the first time. Partied at ICE with the dance music played by DJ Sexy Bambu!! Great time all over. Ate at Pearl a few times where the food was delicious, but then its delicious all over the resort. The drinks and bartenders are great as well!! Every 1 is very polite, kind, and friendly. I enjoy going to see all my family entertainers i like having a good time, all the time. If you are there for a good time you will enjoy yourself very much, its all in what YOU make of it, and they will help you make it happen. All Sexys if you are reading this, I'll see you in January!!!

Room Tip: All rooms are very nice, clean, and spacious...but whos there to enjoy the room? There is too much f...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Teresa F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Macon, Georgia, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed November 5, 2012

My husband and I recently stayed at Cofresi for our honeymoon. The weather was beautiful, only rained a little two afternoons. The food was different but ok considering where we were. The staff was great! We loved the shows and they were so nice and helpful. Two staff members in particular "sexy blackie" and sexy banana" were awesome, so much fun! We would definitely go back!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Brooke J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kitchener
Level 4 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed November 4, 2012

Just came home from 8 nights at Cofresi Palm.....I'm going to rate it at 6.5/10 and not sure if I would go back again at this time of year. We were 2 families travelling together with 2 small children...this hotel did some things really well and other things almost ruined our vacation. We are frequent travellers to Puerto Plata to visit family and understand what we should expect from a resort in POP. Our expectations are low and needs minimal....Here is an overview of our stay.

Check In and Room:
- Easy and Fast
- They say they did not get our request to have rooms close together and on the main floor but asked for 5 minutes and were able to move some things around to give us adjoining rooms on the main floor in building 42.
- Upgraded to Junior Suites for free, almost a beach view...couldn't have asked for anything better.
- its true about the facecloths - only received them 1 in 8 days.
- mini bar was never stocked for us but new water bottles everyday.
- fridge turns off all the time to save power which means if you leave your room for awhile everything warms up...some fruit we had brought with us for the plane ride spoiled...not a huge deal but for the family we travelled with she had a hard time with keeping baby bottles cold.

Property:
- Gorgeous
- Spacious
- Lots of stairs....easy to take a shuttle from anywhere in the complex
- Shuttle stop right outside our building.

Timeshare Guy:
- waiting for us at the shuttle stop when we came out for our first breakfast. Took us by golf cart to the buffet and waited for us. I explained that we were in Puerto Plata to visit family and not interested in the timeshare and that he should just move on to another family so we didnt waste his or our time. He backed off right away and we werent bothered at all for the rest of the week. I wouldnt say he was pushy either. They are there to make money...I believe they only get paid commission so we politely declined and that was the end of it.

Beach/Pools/Towels:
- So many to choose from!
- Clean, perfect temp.
- lots of chairs
- we opted to exchange our wet towels for dry ones instead of getting our card back at the end of the day to be ready for the next as towels seemed to be hard to come by in the mornings (especially on the weekends).

Food/Bars:
- Rodizio was good but the filet mignon was served pretty raw and fatty - it looked like it was browned on the outside and completely uncooked on the inside - completely unedible.
- Can't be 100% sure but 2 of our party were vomiting within 24 hours after eating here as well as another person we met who experienced the same and blamed it on this restaurant as well. We were not drinking alcohol so can't be blamed on too much fun in the sun.
- Chefs were everywhere checking on things and the Pearl Buffet was quite good. Lots of variety and something for everyone....sometimes repetitive but enough choice to not eat the same everyday.
- Pancakes, french toast and omelettes made to order everyday
- Bacon everyday except 1 (not the norm in puerto plata hotels)
- Received 3 reservations for a la carte when we arrived - italian, mexican, seafood - our 2nd family received the same reservations but at different times - when we asked to have them changed we were informed that its because we have different last names - 1st guest service woman was not helpful to correct - obviously we want to eat together. 2nd person we asked was a man and extremely helpful and corrected everything and gave us an early time because of the children. very accomodating!
- received a 4th reservation for brazilian restaurant under the door part way through the week which was nice
- enjoyed all the a la cartes except brazil for obvious reasons
- ate once at casablanca buffet in tropical - pearl buffet much much better
- received a 5th a la carte for the night we left - for 730pm...shuttle to airport was at 5pm...(not sure what the point of that was)

Entertainment:
- This scores some negative points.
- There is a serious communication problem in the Lifestyles Complex.
- The shuttle drivers should be aware of where the evening entertainment is happening. Everyone is taking the shuttle to dinner and entertainment and signs are posted telling you what the entertainment is but the drivers dont know where to take you. We found this problem EVERY SINGLE NIGHT!
- Our kids looked forward to the mini disco and it only happened once in 8 nights.
- Halloween night the program said trick or treat at the teen club but not 1 in 5 people we asked knew what or where the teen club was. Next it said mini disco at 815pm for the kids at the colleseum....no mini disco happened. Just an icebreaker game of which kid had the best scream. My daughter won and there was no prize....the adult icebreaker was supposed to start at 845 but didnt start until 930....everything dragged on and on for nothing.
- Shows were not the greatest. so much repetitive dancing...man lifting the woman and spinning around BORING! I have seen so many of these shows in my life and this hotel needs to do some work on their evening shows.
- The animacion didnt do much if the guest count was low...didn't bother us at all as not interested in their games but if you want some action this hotel is only busy on the weekends and by busy I am obnoxiously insanely dont want to be anywhere near the pool or bar BUSY.

SUNDAY NIGHT WELCOME PARTY:
- a must see event! Well put together and the highlight of our stay

WEEKEND GUESTS:
- I have been angry reading reviews where people complain about the "locals" coming on the weekends. Dominicans or otherwise have the right to enjoy a relaxing weekend at the hotel. I have a huge problem with the behaviour of the weekend guests at this hotel, the volume of weekend guests that come in and the way the hotel handles things.
- Seemed to be a mix of American and Dominican guests that are there to party hard for the weekend. I watched a 60+ year old woman squat and pee in the pool then squat and splash herself to clean herself. The line was 6 people deep to get a drink at the bar (even juice and water). People were acting like animals and it carried over from the pool to the buffet.
- Lines in the buffet on the weekend were insane...hard to find somewhere to sitdown and people were pushy and piled their plates with food like it was their last meal.
- I really have never seen anything like this in my whole life.....I am not going to generalize or put all the blame on the guests. I think the hotel needs to better manage the influx of guests on the weekend. You need more bars open, you need more people working in the buffet to refill food and plates. It was pure chaos and if the whole week was like the weekend I would have asked for a FULL refund.

CHECK OUT:
- first thing we did when we checked in was call to ask how to make a local call with a phone card. we were told just dial 9 and the number...no charge for local calls. On check out we were presented with a 1400 pesos bill for connection fees. We had to talk to the manager and charges were reversed. Another communication problem...nobody knows what is happening.
- we checked out at 1pm for a 5pm pick up for the airport.
- At 3pm we asked for a courtesy room....we were given a magnetic key for room 30001.
- this room is down 2 flights of stairs that are found at the Cheers Pool on the middle of the deck....such a strange place for rooms. They are old and not renovated which is fine for a shower BUT....
- Our courtesy room door looked like it was kicked in. There was no door knob (why the key card?)
- The shower tap was laying on the sink...how to turn on the water?
- The light fixture was hanging by a wire out of the wall.
- There was dirty used toilet paper on the toilet seat and in the garbage, hair, dirt everywhere...Absolutely disgusting...
- No towels in the courtesy room!
- No phone to call for help
- No room number on the door either
- We used it to change our clothes, skipped the shower as we couldn't take one even if it was clean and went back to complain.
- At the same time as this happened.....the bellhop told us 900 guests were arriving for the weekend. All of them seemed to arrive at once. ABSOLUTE CHAOS EVERYWHERE!
- Complained to the manager and she said Im sorry...Im sorry but there was no sincerity...I felt like she just wanted us to stop talking....I dont think she could handle everything that was going on either.
- Our week started out ok and I would have rated the hotel 7.5 until the last few hours.
- Herding Cattle doesn't even describe the craziness at the end.

Overall:
We enjoyed the property, the beach, the pool, the restaurants (even with the sickness).
They could improve by educating the staff on the daily activities so you can find where to go easily.
They have some serious work to do to improve how they service their guests on the weekend.

If the price was right again I would stay here but not in low season. I would hope that in high season when the hotel was full there would be more activity in the week and less craziness on the weekends.

Room Tip: building 40, 41, 42 are all close to the beach and hae been renovated.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank ilovesangria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TX
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed November 2, 2012

This was my second trip to Puerto Plata. There is so much that I didn't know and still don't know but anytime I had a question, I was told to see my VIP service rep.

This is when I met my personal VIP rep. Wow!
She made my week! When it looked like my vacation was going to be horrible, she fixed it! She cared for all of my needs and the needs of my guests! She even made adjustments when 4 of our friends were stranded by Hurricane Isaac! Our rep took care of our dinner reservations, shuttle transports, taxis, and anything else we needed! She went above and beyond her assignment, even staying after 6 on the day we arrived.

The service was not limited to one member of the staff. One of the head waitstaff the Pearl/Moomtaz restaurants remembered us and catered to our every need, including meals for a sick guest. The entire crew at Anja's blew us away with the personal attention they gave us over the entire week. Serenity Beach accommodations and staff met and surpassed all memories we had from our first visit.

We had odd requests that changed every 10 minutes on the first day and the staff did all that they could to accommodate me and my guests amid the ever changing circumstances of Hurricane Isaac. They went beyond what was written to satisfy a guest and keep a customer happy. Customer service like that is a dying art. Every employee we encountered took the time to listen to my questions and worked hard to make my wife and me satisfied customers!

This property has beach front accommodations that are near bars and restaurants. It also has quiet locations away from all of the hustle and bustle. Whatever type of vacation you want can be found here.

Now I know that I can count on the VIP services to help me with everything I need.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank worldwidewrens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pembroke Pines, Florida
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2012 via mobile

We vacationed different times in the past and we love all inclusive resorts and this was one of the best experiences we ever had.
What was good? Every thing, the rooms cleaned every day, the food ok ( We couldn't ask more for what we paid, The Rodizio restaurant was the best). We stayed in a room with view to the beach and the pools . I could see every morning maintenance guys cleaning the pool. To all the staff and entertainers, Great job!.

We definitely will be back in the future.

Travel considerations;
We came from Fort Lauderdale with Spirit Airlines , good price if you buy ahead of time, the only issue but not a problem the flight arrives in Santiago de Los caballeros which is 1 hour from airport. We paid 80 dollars for a cab. We used the same one to come back. As per the resort we booked through Expedia ,real good price for 6 nights. Book ahead also you can find good prices,we heard about Group on from some guests.

We feel we really had vacation!

Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
3 Thank Darwin D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
managementteam55, Manager at Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2012
Dear Guest,

First of all we would like to thank you for taking your time to write this review and we are glad that you had a vacation like a king at Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa resort.

We will make sure to congratulate all our staff you are mentioning for the good job. Thank you for recommending us.

We hope to host you very soon in our property.

Sincerely,
The Management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calhoun, Georgia
1 review
Reviewed October 24, 2012

This was my first trip to Dominican Republic. The food at the Pearl and the brazilian restaurant were great! everyone was very nice. The place was clean and staff was very friendly. The entertainment guys were wonderful. Very friendly and keep us busy and laughing! Donkey,John MIchael, and Banana were great! Loved hanging out with them!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DeDe G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
managementteam55, Manager at Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort, responded to this review, October 30, 2012
Dear Guest,

First of all we would like to thank you for taking your time to write this review and we are glad that you had a great vacation at Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa resort.

We will make sure to congratulate our animation staff for making your stay especial.

We hope to see you again soon.

Sincerely,
The Management
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 Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort

Property: Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort
Address: 1 Paradise Drive | Cofresi Beach, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic (Formerly Be Live Grand Carey)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 468
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort – Dominican Republic is the newest jewel in the Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Club. Nestled along the Cofresi beach shores, and overlooking the sparkling Caribbean sea, this resort caters to the luxurious enjoyment of both families and couples looking for that perfect getaway. With 468 well-appointed accommodations that range from Adult Only Spa Suites, to Standard family friendly rooms located in a quite setting between the ocean beach and spectacular pool, this is a paradise worthy of the Lifestyle name. The resort was created with space and comfort in mind, making Cofresi Palm a relaxing, enjoyable and satisfying experience for all guests and their families. All rooms have air conditioning, cable television, phones, and ceiling fans, while the decor has a distinctive design, featuring dark wood furnishings. Shaded patios and verandas provide a relaxing place to gather in some of the units. Providing both service and features that are standard for a Lifestyle property, the Cofresi Palm offers a unique luxury accommodations experience. Cofresi Palm provides the easy, relaxed ambiance of the Caribbean in an opulent and elegant setting. Experience the array of beauty and excitement that Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort has to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sun Village Puerto Plata
Sun Village Hotel Cofresi
Dominican Republic Sun Village
Sun Village Dominican Republic
Sun Village Spa
Sun Village Resort Dominican Republic
Sun Village Resort Puerto Plata
Sun Village Beach Resort
Sun Village Resort Spa Puerto Plata

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