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Reviewed March 8, 2010

For the price it wouldnt have been terrible if it didn't rain so much...but without the sun(our only reason for going), we were dependent on the resort...which definitely does not cater very well to the guests. Don't waste your time at the restaurants, the buffet blows them all away. Don't believe the 24/7 food availability, and if you get the VIP package it has limitations...except for the timeshare owners. Bring cash, the ATM's break a-lot and they dont take credit cards in all of the shops. If you chance going to this resort..get the couples package massage with the sauna, massage and then bathtub for 2...i dont know what my wife paid for it, but it was worth every penny. In hindsight once it started raining we should have spent the rest of the week at ocean world, real liquor, a real night club...and service staff that know how to smile. The beds on the beach are awesome if you get there when they open at 8, get on line and then get dibs on your bed until the sun comes out. The time share people are the same as everywhere else. The beach is small but very nice, except for the drug dealers? pimps? I couldnt understand what they were selling but they left us alone rather quickly. The beach and pools cut you off at 6pm...so if you arent on there schedule you will miss out....do yourslef a favor and spend a few extra dollars.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank NeenNJeff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 7, 2010

I had read all the reviews on here before I left and for the most part, the negatives are true. For the price it was a good vacation. . .but looking past that, I would not go back. The food was ok. No one from our group got sick but the buffett is very redundant. We ate at a few of the reservation spots but not all the restaurants are open everyday and you have to make reservations a day in advance. The only eat times are 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30. The seafood restaurant was the best.
The rooms are very small but clean. The bed is horrible! It was like sleeping on a box spring. The housekeeping services were lacking. We had to beg daily to get fresh towels and have the room cleaned. There must be a shortage of towels at the resort because after the initial day, we never got any hand towels or washclothes. They also limit you to one beach towel a day so hang on to it and make sure they mark you as bringing it back or you won't get one the next day.
The music by the pool is very loud and any activities they have there at night will keep you up past midnight if your room is near there. I would recommend staying in building 4 or 5 to avoid the noise factor. Don't pay extra for the ocean view because most rooms have this.
There isn't much to do inside or outside of the resort and it rained for over half of our trip. We booked through cheapcarribean and did not receive half of the things promised. They stopped giving the promised tickets to the Thursday night Ocean World party several months ago but it is still listed on their website (and when we booked our trip). The staff there isn't very helpful and the cheapcarribean representative (Alfred) tells you you must call the main company to complain because he can do nothing about it.
For the price, it was ok but I would not return. I think they realize this is the case with the majority of people so they don't go out of their way to get your return business.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled with friends
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4  Thank doctkc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 5, 2010

Myself, 4 of my friends, and 4 adults went. We were actually booked to stay at Sun Village, but since it shut down, we chose the VIP package that Lifestyle Resort offered us. I couldn't have asked for anything better. The first night we were there, we went to the VIP stage area by the Disco to watch a show. They involved the crowd in it, and my friends got to be in a dancing competition. It was awesome!! On Sunday night, we had a welcome party and it was ecstatic. Overlooking the beach and seeing the bonfire on the little island was a picture perfect scene. The dancers were incredible and knew their routines well. They let us go up and dance in front of the band. Let me tell ya, it may have been night time, but the humidity was still high and by the time we got done dancin, it looked like we had just taken a shower lol. It was cool. They even put us up on the jumbotron!! Monday we just used as a day to get to know the resort so we knew where everything was. Just layed on the VIP beds, how relaxing! Tuesday we visited Ocean World and I swam with the dolphins!!!!!!!!!!!! It was quick, but the coolest feeling ever. Wednesday, my friends and I explored the bar areas. HAHA. It was a longg night, lets just say that. Thursday we went to the disco && danced the night away and sang karaoke. Also, we went to a buffet around the pool and watch a show they preformed in the pool. IT WAS SWEET!!! Friday we went to the Casino and I only lost a dollar the whole night!! Woo Hoo! I did NOT want to go home on Saturday, but I can say it was WELL worth the money.
P.S. If you go, tell D hello for me!!!!! (he is the dancer from Haiti) Also Gina and David
(Bartenders)
Also-be prepared for the change in food. It was okay, but I never craved fast
food so much in my life :)

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled with friends
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3  Thank corifaye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2010

I know this is a very long review but its intended to help anyone who is planning and/or already booked a trip!
I Just returned from a week long vacation from this resort. I Went with 2 of my girlfriends for vacationing! We are all 30 years of age and had a blast! It took a lot of arguing to get what we paid for but the staff made it well worth it. This includes bell hops, front desk receptionists (especially Jose), bartenders (especially Gina), all the wait staff, the maids, the entertainment crew, the hotels night time manager, Security, and many others.
We booked through a Platinum Supreme member on VRBO.com. We paid her for one week in a Villa. The VIP customer service rep called me 2 DAYS before our departure to the Dominican Republic and told me there was rain damage to our Villa and they had to send us to a completely different resort. The woman I spoke with said they had absolutely NO accomodations for us! She even asked if we could come back in May. I refused to go anywwhere else considering it was less then 48 hours until we were supposed to arrive. I immediately called mermber in which I had already paid for the VILLA. She told me she was unaware of the situation and to see what they had to offer me the next morning and inform her. I called VIP Customer Service first thing. The woman I spoke with, said she'd have to speak with her supervisor in order to see how they could accomodate us.I called the member and she then informed me that she woulkd call a bigwig and find out the problem. Apparently, this is very common at this resort and overbooking happens frequently. Long story short, we ended up getting 2 hotel rooms pool-view (Best View from any of the Hotels), Transportation to and from airport, Golf cart, access to the VIP beach and VIP Bars, one day pass to Ocean World, and they paid for our All-Inclusive fees. I believe $58.50 per day. pparently no one gets a golf cart at the hotels and even sometimes the Villas but I fought for it! We had pre-dinner reservations at 5 of the restaurants 5 of the nights in which I had the confirmations with me sent by the member via email. Every single night we went to dinner, not one restaurant had our names. I printed out ALL my emails and kept with me because I had a feeling this may happen after I got the phone call that there were problems. What saved and definitely helped us, was I printed EVERY single email between me and the member and forwards between her and the resort. When management tried to lie and play stupid games, I pulledn out all of my papers of what we were promised. What could they say now? The member that I went through has connections with the bigwigs so thats how she was able to make pre-reservations. Platinum Supreme members get what they want when your at her level. All of the restaurants allowed us to eat, even though our names were not on there lists EXCEPT the Blue Lagoon. They had many open tables but Wednesday nights are for Members ONLY! The employees did not mind if we were there it was the VIP services department that refused to let us eat there. Members get very upset and complain if they see anyone there without a gold band on. We didnt like that snooty part of the resort. We were offered reservations at the VIP Gourmet Restaurant instead but had eaten there the night before. (THE BEST RESTAURANT) I gave my reservations for 4 people to another group of people who had been unsuccessful in trying to make reservations at any of the restaurants. The Asian and Mexican restaurants were decent and the buffet was mediocre. Like any buffet, you can only eat so much of the same thing day after day. I was very fortunate and did not get sick at all. I do have to admit I was extremely picky in what I ate. We had pizza for lunch at Bellinis and it tasted like goat cheese definitely NOT mozzarella like how it was mentioned. We passed on our dinner reservations due to that experience. Dinner may have been better but not sure! Its definitely worth upgrading to VIP all-inclusive. I dont care what anybody says, the private beach area with the cabanas were awesome. The beds were a lot more comfortable then in the hotel rooms. The wait staff was amazing and always smiling.
The Hotel rooms were decent. They do infumigate frequently. The air conditioning broke the last 2 days in both of our rooms. It got pretty warm and musky. The maids were amazing. They were always around and extremely generous! The staff there works so hard and it sucks to see them mistreated p by upper management. Not their managers, but the BIG BIG bosses. If it werent for them our vacation would have been a nightmare. We met tons of nice people. This resort has a lot of couples and families. We were ok with that but if your looking for alot of nightlife and of a lot single people I would not suggest this resort. There are a few late night bars open but not many.
Just so anyone who is reading this knows, I am not being a snob in any way. We got accomodated for quite a bit, BUT this was after A LOT of arguing! Listed below is what we were supposed to receive just to give you an idea: Private/Free Transportation to and from airport, 3 bedroom Villa w/ 3.l5 bathrooms, washer/dryer, private pool, hot tub, golf cart, personal chef daily , maid daily, free liquor, beer , and fruit (unlimited amounts), free internet, Free day pass to Ocean World, and same priveleges that members receive. That was a bunch of BS . Whatever you do, DO NOT go in the white building! Its for VIP members or people interested in buyingl ifetime memberships. The ladies are very rude and snobby. I had a blue bracelet on and they were so rude when I walked in. Platinum Supreme members are the top notch VIP EV ERYTHING at this resort. They pay tons of money for their memberships and do get the best treatment. They wear the gold bands. If you are with a member then you reive the Gold band too. Now if you are a guest of the member, you get a blue sparkly band. You are still considered VIP and are allowed to be in a few more places then the regular All-Inclusive. (Including the VIP Bar, VIP Beach Area)
A few helpful hints: Internet is free with the VIP AllInclusive package but only with a blue or gold band. You must go to the VIP Excursion shop. All you do is ask to use the internet and the ladies will give you 1 of there 3 laptops to use. They are only there until 6pm. If you want to use internet in the hotel, it costs $5 for 30 minutes but the computers are very slow. If you need to call US, the phones in the lobby cost $1 per minute. You can pay as you go. I didnt want to give a credit card because I didnt want any extra charges. My friend has an Iphone, right when we landed, an alert on her phone popped up saying text messages cost $20 per text. I have Att&t as well so left my cell phone off. If you withdraw money from the ATM, they only give you Pesos. They also charge an automatic 16% fee based on the amount you withdraw. Its rediculous! So BRING CASH/DOLLARS!They have a currency exchange in the lobby but will NOT allow you to exchange the Pesos for Dollars. You must do it at the airport. You can pay everything in Dominican Pesos and Dollars. I suggest you bring plenty of cash, especially $1 bills for tipping. If you want or need Pesos you can exchange right there in the lobby.
The resort I give a 5 Star for maintenance. Very clean and pretty overall! The Villas are absolutely amazing! Luckily with the golf cart, I was able to venture around entire resort. Its huge! Pools are nice and Spas too.
I would definitely go back! My experience with checking in seemed to be very common having talked with many other guests. Dont let them trick you. Fight for what you are promised! They always tell people theres been rain damage! Dont let them fool you. Its not the receptionists falt its the greedy upper management making them lie to you. Many guests we met went through cheapcarribeanvacations.com and all had a wonderful experience. Print any or ALL emails that are related to your vacation. They were extremely helpful when having to argue. It was written proof! If you can get by the check-in process and the food you will have the best time of your life. Highly recommend Ocean World but the Casino was terrible. It was very small. We did a few excursions that were great! You can pay a lagitimate taxi driver $50 and he will take you anywhere you want in Puerta Plata. And he stays with you. $50 includes up to 5 people in one taxi. Its safe to go through them. Just ask the guys in front of the hotel about transportation. They call and set-up all the arrangements. Good Luck in your vacation planning and I hope this was somewhat helpful.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with friends
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6  Thank hearts10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2010

I had never been to the Carribean before so I was really excited about the different experience of it all. The people were friendly, sometimes helpful and the food edible. I did get a little indigestion at times but if you're careful what you eat, you should be ok. Chambermaids were friendly but at times had to be prompted to even leave clean towels in the bathroom. Tipping definately got you better service. We took a Safari tour and it was fun...a little strange in that you walked into a school in progress and then a little home where the children were sitting in the main room, expressionless like monkeys in a zoo. I felt bad for them and very uncomfortable, which was a feeling that was shared by some of my fellow touristas. However the guide was wonderful and the tour otherwise fun. You did get a sense of what the country was all about.
At the resort the employees were mostly great...but stay away from the really obnoxious timeshare recruiters.
I don't think I'd ever go again but it was a fun vacation and I was sad to leave.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank booyeah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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