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The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort
Ranked #10 of 41 Hotels in Puerto Plata
royal 7
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“nice resort”
Reviewed October 17, 2007

My partner and i stayed at the lifestyle resort hotel and spa (still named Lifestyle Hacienda? out there- why different names?) in October 07 for 2 weeks wanting a quiet get away from it sleep all day holiday.

Fly time was around 8 hours and taxi from Puert Plata was 30 mins £20 each way- stress free.

On arrival we were pleasantly surprised - as weve had a few nightmares in the past, clean and well presented, staff collected baggage and delivered to the clean and accomodating room, again pleasant and we were happy.

Food; there is one large buffet restaurant serving a whole host of food which i found to be the best ive come across after much travelling.

4 al la cartes which you can visit over the period. I have read bad reviews about booking but we had no problem at all in the fortnight!

The seafood al la carte was by far the most enjoyable with the mexican; bland, and indo-china; again bland just going through the motions.

Bars were good and great swim up pool bar.

Entertainment the usual pool games, music - quite loud as expected, so move to other pool! and shows at night; which we never saw as living on the edge got quite tiring- in bed at 10pm!!


There seems to be a major agenda of selling VIP timeshares here which we were aware of and they go on relentlessly; but you have to be quite ruthless in letting them know you dont want it, if thats your decision. This was the only flaw in their staff service as the rest were spot on. My suggestion look them in the eye, dont be intimidated and be as pleasant as you can ( i only lost it once)

Overall we were very happy with this choice for the value for money although at this time they were operating at about 30% capacity.

POINTS TO NOTE:

Yes it does rain- its the tropics and can be a pleasant respite sometimes.

Overhearing other 'Brits' complaing of the food was quite amusing- if you want fish and chips go to grimsby! likewise if you want a pint go to a the dog and duck. Suggestion go to the costa del english pub so you dont have to try local delicacies and mix with 'them locals who'd have nothing if it wasn't for us' quoted from the made in england tattooed fraternity who have put us well and truly on the map!

VIP trip magnificent.

P.s. yes i have some tattoos

P.P.s some of us have fought for England (in wars, football supporting doesnt count) and we still manage some pleasantries like please and thank you rather than relying on a superpower type status- manners cost nothing!!

Nice tho...

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  • Liked — clean
  • Disliked — n/a
  • Stayed October 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
14 Thank royal_7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Long Island, NY
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed October 4, 2007

I stayed at the Lifestyle Resort & Spa from 8/17/07 to 8/25/07 with my wife and two friends for a summer holiday. First thing to be said is you get what you pay for. We all booked through a sale on the cheapcaribbean website and paid $808 total per person for the week with airfare from NYC so it was a steal from the get go. We went down there to simply get away for a week in the sun and to throw back copious amounts of all inclusive alcohol: mission accomplished. After reading all of the reviews as far back as summer 2006, we thought this place might be paradise or it might Fallujah; it was fine. Like anything, there was good and bad (see the middle to bottom of this review).

The resort is pretty massive with four different parts; condos, townhouses, villas, etc. We stayed in the hotelesque area in building 1500. Our room was on the first floor, 1514, and was basic with a king sized bed, color tv, closet and fridge. One odd thing we noticed: there was no dresser to store our clothes, just the closet which had no shelves. The room was clean and cleaned daily so we had no complaints there. We did have an electrical problem with the light switch not turning on when we arrived and which persisted for the entire trip but was easily rigged each day by pushing the card into the switch a certain way. Maintenance took it's time to get there but they did in about a half hour. The fridge was not stocked when we arrived but was quickly thereafter and each day we'd leave a note asking for more water and beer. The air conditioning worked fine. And the shower worked fine and just required you to throw down your pool towel on the floor and the bath room wouldn't flood (as they are European showers with no door).

The grounds were well kept and very green, lots of palm trees and tropical vegetation. The beach was sandy and the water was opaque as it is the Atlantic and not the crystal clear Caribbean. There were rocks about thirty feet into the water that made you wince the first time you stepped on them but you learned how to manuver quickly. There were several pools which were all maintained well from what we saw. The work out room was a joke and I urge you not to use the treadmill as you will break your legs on that thing. I ran on the beach one day and around the grounds a couple others to get a workout. And the place was mostly wheel chair accessible so if you are travelling with disabilities you should be ok.

The food. The food was good at the a la carte restaurants but my group and I found the buffet to be rough at most points. There is a Mexican, a Chinese, an Italian and a seafood restaurant for dinner which are open on a rotating basis and you have to make reservations the day before you wish to eat. The Italian and seafood place were open for lunch mostly every day and you could get a much better meal there than at the buffet almost anyday. I liked the Mexican the best but all were better than the buffet. I'm not a food snob but the buffet would be a 3 to 4 out of 10 and the others a 7.5 to 8 out of 10, 10 being the highest. There were bars by the beach, lobby, disco, one swim up in the pool which wrapped around to a bar out of the water and one at the amphitheater. We spent most time at the pool bar, both in and out of the water. The disco was free to get in but you had to pay for drinks which was a rip off when you paid for all inclusive. We drank mostly bottled water but at some restaurants we had water from a pitcher which they said was filtered and didn't really get any of us sick.

The staff was mostly very helpful. The waiters and waitresses were very polite and courteous. The bartenders were great and enjoyed their job. The front desk is the real only place we had any problems. The first night it rained real bad and I lost my key when I fell crossing a grassy area and the person at the front desk told me it would cost $200 USD for a new key. Being slightly intoxicated I retreived my best man to see if I was misunderstanding something and the woman at the front desk insisted it was $200 and did so with a very condescending smile. Naturally, we refused and waited almost 45 minutes back at the room for maintenance to let us in. The next morning we asked our rep from cheapcaribbean to look into it and suddenly the front desk needed only $10 for a new key. We were quite pissed at the situation but luckily we didn't pay $200 and it worked out in our favor.

Aside from being nearly ripped off by the front desk, the place was fine. We went down to Lifestyle with an open mind and the mind to have fun and party and we did. The amphitheater was hilarious the night we went as they did a theme of scary film/play spoofs on Rocky Horror and Phantom of the Opera, etc. Though I at first resisted participating, a friend I met from the UK and I won a contest where I had to be wrapped in toilet paper like a mummy on stage in front of 150 or so people against three other groups. Having had such a good time at the show, we would have gone more often based on our only experience at the amphitheater.

Lifestyle was not a four or five star resort but a jovial three star resort. The food could have been better but we always found something to eat. The Presidente beer and mamajuana (a rum, honey and Dominican root drink) were all we needed though my wife said the white wine was not that good. The resort had a lot of families with kids and married couples so if you are looking to go down there for singles it wasn't the best scene as our two single friends learned. Have patience and let go of your hang ups and neuroses and you'll have a great time. If you need your backside kissed and pampered, then go someplace that advertises that. And it is the tropics so it was damn hot some days and the sun is brutally fantastic.

Would we go back? Probably not only because there's a big world out there and we want to see it all. Would I recommend it? Sure, if you are looking for a budget vacation and know how to have a good time anywhere, it's the spot.

  • Liked — The pool bar.
  • Disliked — The buffet food and nearly being ripped off for a room key.
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank jmcbreartyiii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ireland
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed September 20, 2007

I cant believe the negative comments about this place. Ive just arrived back on 18th Sept from Tropical Lifestyle after 2 weeks there with a friend and can tell you that this place is excellent. We read the reviews before leaving and wish we hadnt cause they were so bad. However as soon as we got there it was clear that the negative reviews just dont add up. Some people just feel the need to whinge.

I think all holidays depend the the frame of mind you have. When we arrived we were moved to three different rooms in an hour but it wasnt a hassele. The first room someone else was in, the second only had one bed and the 3rd was very nice. It had a leaking sink but again was fixed in an hour. The food in the resort is exceptional. Ive seen poeple complaining about the food cause there is no fish. Well i can tell you now there is loads a fish. Each al a carte restauarnt all have fish on the menu and the buffet (casta blanca) always has fish daily. They all also have loads of beef, pork, chicken, goat etc etc plus good selection of vegetables. The food is bland but that is tradition there but it is a very high standard. We went to all restauarnts, italian, mexican, chinese, and casta blanca all high standard. My fav was the mexican.

There are so many staff around and I can honestly say that 99.9% of them are as helpful and friendly as you will find anywhere. They fill your drink up constantly without even having to ask, its great, lol. In terms of the VIP sales people, well, we didnt get hasseled once the whole time we were there, although each day that a new bus load arrive stalls are set up outside the buffet restauarnt selling nic nacs but just say no unless you want to buy there.

The pools are great especially the swim up bar although not sure how often they are cleaned. The beach is great but it can get rocky as you begin to walk in and is full of loose seaweed. It aint deep and what we did was get a boogie board which was great craic (fun, im irish, lol). The sand is clean and we never seen broken bottles. There are stalls on the beach which are cheap to get nic nacs before leaving although makesure you haggle.

We did the Mega trucks which was brilliant and also the Dolphin swim which was even better. We booked them through our rep which is more expensive. You can get them cheaper on the beach but bare in mind that you wont be covered by insurance.

Gee I have so much I can tell you about this place so could to on and on but i wont. If you would like to ask me anything about my stay please just contact me and i will give you a completely honest answer. Ignore the bad reviews unless your going there just to complain.

Thanks for reading.

  • Liked — Comfort, cleanisness, Room Size, firendly staff, and food
  • Disliked — Hard to say, probably the lack of real nightlife.
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
30 Thank IrishTraveller07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
indiana
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed September 16, 2007

WHAT A WONDERFUL VACATION!!!!! from the moment we stepped foot on the property we were greated by Nelsa in customer service and she was by our side the whole time. our room was beautiful with a spectacular view of the ocean and the pool. so much to do here its hard to make choices, of course Nelsa made our planning very enjoyable. we started off with resort tour. what an amazing choice of rooms to choose from. then we hopped on our helicopter for a tour "over" the property, what an amazing view, sights i will never forget. our second choice was Ocean World, they offer you so many animal interactive options its hard to choose from the Tigers, sharks, stingrays, dolphins or sea lions. we choose to do dolphins and sea lions. the staff took their time and explained everything we needed to know before getting into the water with these wonderful creatures. if you time it right you can do every adventure there is. our next adventure was Paradise Island. from stepping onto the 40 foot yacht and being served oysters and champagne to the wonderful lunch and coctails to taking a swim in clear beautiful waters. it was "paradise" you snorkel in the clearest blue waters with plenty of time to see all of the marine life. then our speedboats back to our chartered air conditioned bus they take you thru a tour of the countryside with plenty of info on the history of Dominica. you will never be bored at Lifestyles. there is plenty of poolside activities to do (games with prizes), to parties at night to just relazing pool or oceanside (the cabanas are a must!!!) the all inclusive is a wonderful way to help with the dinner expierience. we ate at a different resturant every night. you can choose from hamburgers, steaks, seafood to the wonderful sushi (the best sushi i have ever had!!!). and let us not forget to mention the wonderful bartenders that are right there to statisfy your every coctail request. there is nothing they can not make. but the domincan rum is a must!! our stay at the resort was highlighted by the staff, from Nelsa (customer service) to Lydia our housekeeper we were treated like kings and queens. i would definately recommend this resort to anyone with or without children.

  • Liked — the staff
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
18 Thank lilyalana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NJ
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed September 14, 2007

I'll keep this short and sweet and list the problems numerically.
1. The resort is brand new it's only 5 years old but there is some sort of a scam going on with you paying for one type of room and getting another. We arrived and despite being told we were getting a penthouse (i booked a 2 bedroom initially) we wound up getting a one bedroom instead. We were originally supposed to be 4 traveling but wound up just me and my husband so this wasn't a problem accomodating us. However, I did have to stand guard at the reception desk all day for them to get us into the room that we paid for which was a 2 bedroom not a one bedroom.
2. The first night we were there my husband had to threaten the reception desk with us going to take the soap off of our bodies in their pool if they didn't fix the trickle of water we were getting. After about an hour this seemed to be resolved and didn't seem to happen again.
3. The food isn't carribean it's everything but. I enjoy food will eat whatever is there but it was disappointing to see that there is no fish on this island. They usually have one selection of fish on the resort that they cover in some sort of sauce. My husband wound up contracting a taxi to take us to a seafood restaraunt where we paid 140.00 for 2 lobsters which believe me were not that big to cost what it did. The food at the restaruant Polanco was descent though and the owner was very nice. They just don't fish on this island and hence the cost. I did wind up getting sick with Montezumas revenge and even drinking the bottled water didn't help since it's bottled in Dominican. I suggest drinking diet soda your entire stay as the acidity will at least kill the bacteria.
4. Now my favorite one of all...if you all love waiting on the phone with a customer service line as I did today with the phone company for 1.5 hours I'm sure that you will love turning around every 10 feet and finding a salesman. I now know every single one of the VIP Sales reps by name even though they couldn't sell me a thing. They're generally very nice, but this is there livelihood and you will be acosted by them. We were there for 2 weeks so after they couldn't get us the first week they pretty much left us alone the second week. The second week we pretty much had befriended them and they started sharing their sales tactics with us...During this week my husband and I pretty much made it a game to see who was going to get suckered into buying the VIP. We'd laugh as we'd watch them fishing for people.
5. The most important one to me is the Beach. The beach is essentially a rock beach. I was shocked to walk in the first day and feeling sharp rocks under my feet. YOU MUST WEAR WATER SHOES at this beach, Confresi Beach. The water can be rough and deep at times but for the most part it was ok otherwise. There is plenty of shade so if you have kids you can park it under a palm tree. The locals do go to the beach but they tend to stay to the far side of the beach not near the resort. Be careful when you walk though because locals and visitors alike tend to break beer bottles and you may find sharp glass inbedded in the sand unexpectedly.
6. Overall it's not a place I'd return anytime soon but it wasn't a complete loss since the weather was great, the resort is clean and new.
7. The Dominicans in this part however are extremely crafty and will try to sucker you as far as costs go.

  • Liked — Clean and New
  • Disliked — The beach is all rocks when you go in.
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank landscapes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2007

We have just returned from the lovely hotel Tropicale and are a family of 4 (2 x teenagers). I cannot understand the negative reviews! I thought the hotel was simply divine. The rooms were clean with lovely balconys and air conditioning excellent. The showers worked perfectly and room service and all staff were attentive and polite at all times. In fact the staff went out of their way to help us. The entertainment was also fantastic, something for everyone each night. The sheer choice of food in the buffet restaurant was outstanding and you didn't need to book meals at the other restaurants on site, although we went to each one at least once. The beach is clean, albeit a little windy and therefore rougher than your average caribbean beach, but the kids enjoy the waves and it was very peaceful. I simply cannot recommend this hotel highly enough. I will be back.

  • Liked — The staff
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank stargazer2705
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Plymouth
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 31, 2007

I have a very mixed opinion about this Hotel. On arrival it looked beautiful and the perfect place for a relaxing break.
We were met by friendly Reception Staff and a Helpful Bellboy who took us to our Room.

Our Room was great. Basic but very Clean. Not sure about Peoples views on the Water Pressure! Our Shower was great, a little Cold in the Morning because the Water is Solar Heated, but this is pretty much the same on the whole Island.

However we were not prepared for the amount of hassle you get from the Timeshare Guys! No matter what you say they are constantly hassling you. The wait at the Entrance and Exit every Breakfast, Snack, Lunch, Snack and Dinner Time. They are also dotted around the Complex and I even had one follow me to my Room at 9pm!! They dont take NO for an answer and they will offer you anything just to look at their Timeshares, which range from Tshirts to Rum To Free Excursions. Be warned if you want a Stress Free Holiday do not go here because after 3 Days they get on your Nerves!

The Pools are Great, nice and clean or so I thought! One Day I witnessed a Spainish Kid being Sick in the Baby Pool. I watched his Mother drag him away without telling anyone. I went and told a Pool Assistant who told me he would get someone to come down. I can assure you that I sat by this Pool all day and NO-ONE came to clean the Pool. I told as many People as I could to stop them Swimming in it but couldnt tell everyone else in time. Very Poor Hygeine!

The Food was ok. Breakfast was my Favourite Meal. Everything else got a bit samey after 2 Days. The Worst thing is that whats not eaten at Dinner is served alongside Breakfast.
So dont be surprised if you see Last Nights Fish in Creamy Sauce next to your Scrambled Egg!

We went on 2 Trips. Ocean World which is Great. We actually went Twice. Once for Dolphin Enciunters and Shark Encounters and Once just to look around. The Photos for Encounters are a bit pricey but I think the Swims are very Reasonable. For all our Encounters we paid $230 which is about £115 for both if us. So for everyone moaning about the Price I would say show me a place in England were you can Swim with Dolphins, Sharks and Stingrays that Cheap!! If you have Kids this is a great place!

We also went Fishing which sounds Great except no-one told us Marlin was out of Seaon therefore we caught nothing! This was very pricey and I wouldnt recommend it!

All in all we had a ok Holiday. We only paid £1888 to go for a Week which is quite reasonable if you price up any other Caribbena Deals. I personally wouldnt go back but I think everyones Different. Some People like what others may Hate, so I would say Go and make your own mind up.

  • Liked — Lovely Power Shower!
  • Disliked — Timeshare Hassle!
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
7 Thank sammysnail1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort

Property: The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort
Address: Columbus Torre 1 | Playa Cofresi, Puerto Plata 57000, Dominican Republic (Formerly Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort & Spa)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Puerto Plata Province > Puerto Plata
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Puerto Plata
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Plata
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Plata
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 282
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set within the sprawling Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, The Tropical offers a classic hotel vacation experience set within quaint, two- and threestory, Mediterranean-style buildings. The mood is laid-back and distinctively Caribbean. Guest enjoy all resort facilities and amenities (excluding the V.I.P areas) including swimming pools, a choice of excellent restaurants, exercise rooms, tennis courts, windsurfing and so much more. The Lifestyle Tropical is Ideal for couples seeking a private island hide-away with all the advantages of a world-class resort. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort And Spa
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Hotel Puerto Plata
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort Spa
Hacienda Tropical
Hotel Lifestyle Tropical Beach

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