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“The EVERYTHING review, plus TIPS and TRICKS”

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The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort
Ranked #10 of 39 Hotels in Puerto Plata
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“The EVERYTHING review, plus TIPS and TRICKS”
Reviewed June 11, 2014

The quick summary is that my boyfriend and I had a fantastic vacation at Lifestyles Tropical Resort. I read HUNDREDS of reviews before going, so this will be a combination of my own observations along with some responses to things you may have read elsewhere.

WHO SHOULD GO: Honestly, I feel like this is a place designed for adults. There are areas for kids, but this place truly caters to adults. As I don’t have children, this was great! There were whole pools that were “Adults Only” and the lifeguards did a great job enforcing this.

HOTEL ROOM: Our room was great. I had read that buildings 5 and 6 are newer, so I requested those and got building 5. Everything in our room worked perfectly. In fact, our AC would make us cold! I read before leaving that some had trouble getting items they needed (water refills, towels, etc.) Every morning, I laid $3 on a pillow with a note (in Spanish) asking the woman who cleaned our room for what we needed, and we got everything we asked for, always. Every room has its own balcony. There’s a safe attached inside the closet that you can rent for $3 a day. We placed all our valuables inside the safe while away from the room and never had any problem.
So, the television has many channels, some of them come in better than others and a lot are in Spanish (this shouldn’t be surprising). If you are going on vacation for the television, maybe you should just stay home?
I had read before leaving of people complaining about their toilet clogging. Next to the toilet is a little sign that says to put the paper in the trash can, not the toilet. This may seem gross to people from other places, but we followed the instructions, and never had a problem with our toilet.
We never had problems with having hot water or with losing electricity. The electricity was out when we checked in for about 30 minutes and that was all. There are local people in the DR who only get to use electricity after 5pm, so it seems almost sinful the way I’ve seen certain people complain in reviews.

BEACH: The cabanas owned by the resort are about one story above the ocean. The actual beach is public, but it was never very crowded while we were there. We thought the beach was very nice. It was clean and the waves were nice – not too crazy, but not unmoving. The Lifestyle cabanas are very nice (the size of a double bed and comfortable). The beach is open from 8am to 6pm. Every morning, my boyfriend and I would go wait at the gate (arriving between 7:30 and 7:45am) to grab a good cabana. Bring something with you (flip flops, t-shirt, book, whatever) that you can leave on the bed. This will save your spot all day. You can come and go!
At the VIP beach, you can get sushi. You can get other food from a menu as well, but that can take a long time to receive. Drinks are ever flowing. Pina coladas are AMAZING!

POOLS: There are a couple pools by Lifestyles (and then more by the Confresi). My boyfriend and I most enjoyed the one with the swim-up bar (adults only). You could also look down from that pool into another that has a volleyball net and a basketball hoop. There is another very quiet pool by buildings 5 and 6.

SERVICE AND TIPPING: The staff here is lovely. They are always popping up to ask if you want drinks. They smile and say “hola.” You should tip people and say “gracias.” Before you leave for your trip, go to the bank and get a stack of dollar bills. You don’t really need to exchange your money when you arrive. We did with some and then were just having to find ways to use it, everyone would rather have US money. (The following monetary suggestions are in US currency. The Dominican peso is about 40 to the US dollar.) The average salary in the DR is a fraction of what it is in the US, give a $1 to those who help you. We typically tipped those who brought us things on the beach $1-2. We would tip bartenders $1-2. As I said earlier, I tipped my maid $3 a day. After getting an omelet made by the same guy a few days, I gave him $1. We tipped at the a la carte restaurants as well.
Also, the staff works round the clock it seems to keep a place that could fall into a trashy dump (with so many people drinking and eating all the time) in clean condition. Seriously, great job with this.

FOOD: Depending on how long you are staying, you will be given a certain number of reservations at the a la carte restaurants. (We were there 5 nights, and we got 2 automatic reservations). For the days you already have a reservation, you can go to guest services between 9 and 10am and request something different. If you don’t have a reservation, you can show up between 3 and 5pm and ask if there have been any cancelations. If you don’t have a reservation, you eat at one of the buffets. We only had to do this one night. Note that all of the a la carte restaurants are closed on Sunday as there is the big welcome party with lots of food for everyone.
The food here is fine. Would I brag about it, no. Was it edible, most definitely. My first tip, go to the Pearl (buffet at the Confresi) for breakfast. It is larger and much less hectic than the Casablanca (buffet at Lifestyles). The food is also better at the Pearl (for example, they make the pancakes to order rather than just making a pile). It only takes about 5 minutes to walk there.
We ate at 4 a la carte restaurants: Blue Lagoon (seafood), Trapiche (Mexican), Bellini (Italian), and Moomtaz (Indian). At the Blue Lagoon, I had some salmon that was quite good. Bellini had fresher vegetables than we had seen before. Moomtaz was probably the most authentic if you like Indian food. We avoided Indochine because we heard it was bad.
At the beach, you can get crab, fish tempera, and veggie maki rolls. They are pretty good and you don’t have to leave the beach!

SALESMEN/TIMESHARE: Alright, so this was an area I was concerned with but shouldn’t have been. This is a resort that sells timeshares, and there are specific people that are there to sell them to you. When you arrive, they will call them the “concierge.” The person will tell you that they will meet you at breakfast and take you on your “welcome tour” and give you your gift. If you have any interest in a timeshare or want the gift (bottle of rum) then, by all means, go on the tour. The tour is meant to try and sell you a timeshare. From all the feedback I got from others while I was there, the tour didn’t take up too much of people’s time and they didn’t have a lot of trouble saying no. I never saw the timeshare guys trolling the beach or bothering people as they were trying to enjoy relaxing.
However, my boyfriend and I wanted to avoid the tour altogether. Therefore, we ate breakfast at the Pearl (which as I said has better food anyway). Since we escaped that first morning, we likely got moved down on the list as new people came in. Other mornings we would be walking around and a timeshare person would ask “did you guys get here yesterday?” and we would say “no.” That would be that. They assume that if you have been there longer than a day that you’ve already taken the welcome tour.
Some people I read were angry that there are places you don’t have access to if you don’t have a timeshare. This did not bother us at all. We paid for a certain amount of access. We had beaches and pools; plenty to eat and drink. If you want access to more beaches and other things, then pay more. That’s really all I have to say about that.

EXCURSIONS: This is one area that I cannot be of much help. Many excursions are many hours, and we did not want to devote whole days to things. So, we only went on one excursion – horseback riding through the countryside. It was just a couple hours (bought from John Wayne in the Lifestyles lobby). I had never ridden a horse before, but I was able to do it. (It does hurt your butt though!) The highlight was getting to see the beautiful Dominican Republic landscape. Just gorgeous.
We also took advantage of the spa (Metamorphosis) at Lifestyles. We got a one hour couples massage. So nice.

SAFETY: I felt completely safe at the resort. There is a lot of security. We only ventured outside of the resort for the one excursion, and were always with a guide. I felt safe then as well, but I’ve read that you should be careful if you plan on going around by yourself.

HEALTH: Before you go, you should make an appointment with your doctor or travel nurse (a month ahead would be best). You will need to make sure you are caught up on Hep A and Typhoid. They should also give you pills for malaria and traveler’s diarrhea. All are important. Bring bug spray with you and spray every day. Whenever I didn’t spray, I would get bites.
Wear sunscreen. The sun can be brutal and will burn you. I saw so many people with burns, one guy with giant blisters on his calves. Ouch! Buy sunscreen and bug spray before you come unless you want to pay $30USD for a bottle.
Also, DO NOT PUT THE WATER IN YOUR MOUTH. Do not open your mouth while showering, do not brush your teeth with the water. Don’t do it.

CONCLUSION: If you are a laid back person who wants sun, beach, pool, food and drinks whenever you want, then don’t think anymore about it. Go to Lifestyle Tropical, follow these tips and you’ll have a great time. Ugh, I miss I already.

Room Tip: Building 5 or 6.
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
26 Thank Heidi M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
The nice notes like the one you kindly posted on the Trip Advisor webpage are very appreciated by us.
Thank you for taking some time to express your impressions during your stay at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata. It was delightful for all our staff to read that you appreciate the service of all of them and the facilities at the resort.
Your comments encourage us to continue improving our services. Thank you for giving us and others your honest point of view about our property and services and we look forward to welcome you back soon.
Warmest regards
The management
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Woodbridge, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2014

The place is incredible. The staff made this vacation something we will never forget, especially the entertainment from John Cena, and the rest of the group. They always kept us well entertained. I will definitely be back to visit this resort.

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
4 Thank Alexa A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
Thank you for your nice comments. It was our pleasure to host you at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata and we look forward to welcoming you back for another unforgettable vacation.
Sunny regards
The management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Linden, New Jersey
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2014

I had the most amazing time in Puerto Plata at the Lifestyle Tropical. The service was outstanding. The food was delicious. The entertainment was beyond my expectations; and the parties were always packed! You get way more than what you pay for! The people who made this experience special were John Cena, the aerobics instructor; Salami, the entertainer and dancer; Speedy, the entertainer and dancer; and Max in Guest Services. These gentlemen took pride in their jobs and they treated my friends and I with the most respect. They went above and beyond for us at the tropical. I will be back soon!

Room Tip: I stayed in building four on the first floor. Beautiful room; easy access to everything. Especially...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Shanay F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
It was certainly our pleasure hosting you at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata. We are glad to learn that you enjoyed our services and facilities and that your vacation experience was a memorable one.
We passed your nice comments to the rest of the team!
Thank you for making Lifestyle Puerto Plata the preferred resort for your vacation and we look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
Sincerely,
The Management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kennesaw, Georgia
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2014

I enjoyed my time at the Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays. The staff were extremely friendly. The beaches were just walking distance from your door. The layout of the food display was just beautiful and tasty. The staff was always wanting to do more for you. All day or night, there was always something to do even if you just wanted to read a book. I really enjoyed my time here and I feel you will do the same.

Room Tip: My Villa was in building 6 which was perfect for me. It overlooked the Beach and was a little quiete...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank donnahogansells
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
Receive cordial greetings from all the team working at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata.
We are very pleased you enjoyed the all-inclusive program and the different activities.
We thank you for taking your time sharing your opinion with us and we looking forward to welcoming you soon again!
The management
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Runnemede, New Jersey, United States
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2014

I went with two other couples here a few years ago. It was a really great place for the price. We were upgraded to the VIP bar which had beds and top shelf liquor. I love all inclusive deals, and this was a bargain at $1500 for both me and my husband including airfare for 8 nights!!!!

Our server, Lady, was Awesome and we never seemed to be without a drink:) The beach was not so great, but WalMart was cute. The show was fantastic as was the food served with the show. The rest of the food was so/so, but that is a usual with an inexpensive all inclusive (and we weren't there to eat anyway!!!)

They tried to be a little too pushy with their time share deal, but after we had our drinks, we took off for the pool!!!! I would definitely recommend this place for the price, and highly recommend bringing along friends. The employees work hard, and work several jobs including servers, teaching you Spanish, doing aqua aerobics and even the entertainment at night, I am not sure when these people sleep!!!

I actually went in November of 2011, but am just adding a review now, so disregard the July 2013, which is as far back as TripAdvisor would let me select. So maybe their food had improved!!!!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Judy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
It was certainly our pleasure hosting you at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata. We are glad to learn that you enjoyed our services and facilities and that your vacation experience was a memorable one.
It is an honor to know that our staff is providing our guests with the natural warm and hospitality that characterize the Dominican people. Please be assured that your nice comments will be forward to our staff.
Thank you for making Lifestyle Puerto Plata the preferred resort for your vacation and we look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.
Sincerely,
The Management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bradford
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 10, 2014

Really enjoyed the animation team at the tropical, they was all brilliant with the activities they was involved in. Lenny Kravitz, John Cena, Salami, Moskito and Puchi did a great job with entertaining me and the family. Really enjoyed the activities during the day, the parties that are held on a Thursday and Sunday are incredible. Really enjoyed myself at the tropical. Would love to see them all again on my next vocation.
Lauren UK.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Laurenwrightx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
We are glad to learn that you enjoyed our services and facilities and that your vacation experience was a memorable one.
We passed your nice comments to the rest of the team!
Thank you for making Lifestyle Puerto Plata the preferred resort for your vacation and we look forward to welcoming you back next year.
Sincerely,
The Management
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 10, 2014

The vacation was amazing at the Tropical, the staff were absolutely brilliant including the animation team.
Really enjoyed the activities that took place during the day especially the water aerobics with John Cena, the other entertainers sure did an amazing job including Salami, Moskito, Lenny Kravitz and Puchi particularly at the parties that were held whilst we were on our vacation!! Hope to see you all again next year and have another excellent vacation.

Anna, England

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank annaheslopx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Management T, Manager at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort, responded to this review, June 15, 2014
Thank you for your nice comments. It was our pleasure to host you at The Tropical at Lifestyle Holidays Vacation Resort Puerto Plata and we look forward to welcoming you back next year for another unforgettable vacation.
Sunny regards
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 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 Hotel Puerto Plata
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort And Spa
Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort Spa
Hacienda Tropical
Hotel Lifestyle Tropical Beach

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