We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Not quite perfect, but close.”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 12 more sites!
Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #49 of 111 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Not quite perfect, but close.”
Reviewed September 15, 2011

My wife and I stayed for 2 weeks at the lovely Ambar in August. We had a fantastic stay with some minor issues, which we didn't let affect our overall
experience.

Grounds
As indicated in this thread the grounds are beautiful. Careful attention is paid to every detail of the landscaping. Absolutely fantastic!

Rooms
Here is where we had our first issue with our stay. The first night we could not sleep because the couple in the room next to us had their TV on full blast the entire night. We called front desk and they addressed the issue immediately by calling the room and asking to turn down the TV. The next day we switched rooms to distance ourselves from above mentioned couple. Who keeps a tv on that loud while they sleep? well we figured it was probably because you can hear everything and I mean everything that occurs in the outside hall, the doors are so thin and the hall echoes and projects every single noise from footsteps to talking to people slamming their bedroom doors. Pray you are a deep sleeper or you are in a hall with quiet people, or else you'll be woken up each night.

Nightlife
Do not go here if you are looking to party into the wee hours of the morning. The ambar lobby bar literally shuts down by 11pm and at night that's all it has to offer. Instead take one of the shuttles up to the evening show; Michael Jackson is on Monday and by far the best performance followed by the circus. Some of the shows are silly at the main stage but entertaining nonetheless. Usually the courtyard show starts around 11pm (island time) and is either audience participation or staff entertainment. They do have a disco which mainly the young teenies go too and a casino. The casino is smokey and you have to purchase drinks inside, also you can't bring outside drinks in.

Beach
The ambar beach is adults only, however you do get some oblivious people who decide to bring their kids over from the esmerelda to build sandcastles at your feet. Kids are great and all except when you are expecting a kid free vacation (i.e. no screaming, crying etc) which is why we chose Ambar. Security will usually ask them to leave if spotted.

The beach itself is beautiful, unfortunately the BP stretch of beach is susceptible to seaweed and I mean alot of seaweed. The majestic stretch of beach cleared theirs each day using machinery by late morning. but ambar staff use wheel barrows and the task is tediously slow. The seaweed isn't nice to look at but isn't a factor unless you are swimming or walking on the beach, the area with the chair beds is beautiful.

Speaking of chair beds, the most annoying aspect of this vacation is the people playing the towel game. Seriously it is absurd! Management states using many different methods that reserving chair beds is not allowed, however everyday by 7am the first two rows of huts on the beach are reserved by some people putting towels on the respective chairbeds. Not only do they reserve them at 7am, but they stroll onto the beach at 11:30 am to start their day. 4 hours the huts and chair beds are being unused. Well I had enough of these little games by the third day, one morning we headed down at 8:00 to see the first 2 rows "reserved", I took ownership of a hut and two chair beds that we deemed hospitable for our daily lounge. The two towels already there were removed,
folded nicely and placed on some chair beds behind us. Should the party that reserved the beds return in the hour I told my wife we will gladly move. At approx 11:30am a Russian couple started scouring the area, pointing in our direction and circling us. The male pointed at the hut and chairs and told my wife "mine", she kindly responded that we have been here for 3.5 hours and they are ours. Cursing at us (What I assume is cursing in Russian) they took up residence at the chair beds behind us, my wife and I continued enjoying our cervesa's and laughed about something, only to hear the female behind us mock us by imitating our laughter, hmm and then male once again cursed. Ok get over it already. But it didn't end there; all of a sudden the male lifts his chaired to apparently move it and smashes it into the palm leaves of the hut above my wife. That was the final straw for me, as I leaped of my chaired to confront this jerk. I don't think he realized when i was seated that I am 6'5 220lbs, well he certainly realized it when I got in his face and came within an inch of throwing him across the beach. Fortunately I restrained myself as a) I was on my honeymoon and b) I really don't want to spend it in a Dominican prison. I am sure this situation isn't the norm at ambar and is an extreme case, but be warned that people do feel entitled to their reserved chair beds, even if they do show up 4 hours later. So either accept the towel game or be prepared to defend your right.

The beach bar is great! The cups are small so bring a bubba keg or equivalent to keep your drinks cool.

Pool
We aren't really pool people but the pool is very well maintained. The pool bar is very popular in the afternoon and you can find some fun people to party
with. Shaded chair beds go very fast at the pool in the morning and the majority or the beds are taken by lunch.

Restaurants
Our favorite a la cartes were don pablo and maiko. The garden grill was also good. The remaining a la cartes were decent but nothing special. Send in your reservations a week before you arrive to secure the 3 restaurants mentioned above. Don pablo also requires long pants on guys, no shorts.

Before you enter the restaurants the staff/hostess will require you to use hand sanitizer. We really liked this policy that the BP has implemented as let's face it alot of vacationers don't practice hygiene. Who knows where their hands have been before they start digging into the buffet.

The buffet was quite good, they have a little something for everyone and some great choices of omelets. Standard buffet mentality amongst the guests here, apparently they feel the food will run out and they need to consume as much as they can. People can be quite rude here, but I guess that's to be expected with this many people.

Staff
Great staff. No issues at all.

People
Sigh. I am Canadian and it's quite apparent why most vacation destinations love Canadians. Punta Cana is often referred to as Punta Canada! Judging by the expressions on peoples faces, the lack of effort to crack a smile or respond to a casual hello you would never think they were on vacation. Americans and Brits were the most polite, fun and enjoyable people. However and I hate to generalize but I will, the south Americans are just plain rude, if you don't speak Spanish or Portuguese or look South American, don't expect any courteous behavior. Unfortunately this kind of rude behaviour/attitude is echoed by French Canadiens, they really do not do a good job of representing our country.

Excursions
We did the jungle safari. Some of the trip is good, but it turns out to be a cash grab, everywhere they take you there are things to buy, from the typical Dominican house (who sells coffee and chocolate out back) to the school where donations are accepted, even the tour bus guide will sell you something. If I was only here a week I would have regretted doing this tour, but two weeks it wasn't a big deal.

Catalina Island is also a 3 hour coach ride each way before you even get on the boat. keep that in mind if you plan on doing that excursion.

Activities
They have a mini golf course which is ok, nothing special. Otherwise non water sport activities at this resort are non existent, so on a rainy day there is NOTHING to do apart from extra curricular activities with your partner or parking yourself at the bar. They also have tennis courts.

Overall the Ambar is a fabulous place and we are so glad we stayed here. We might return but we usually like to try new places. Hopefully you'll experience a better group of people than we did. The Dominican is a wonderful country!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank SUPA_Schmoopa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

10,074 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    5,923
    2,502
    1,046
    374
    229
See reviews for
833
7,088
138
28
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2,700)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Columbus, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 14, 2011

We went to this resort in July for our honeymoon. After 12 hours of travel, we arrived at the Ambar - but the employees made us feel anything but welcome. I had emailed to ask for a waterfront view, but we were given a room on the ground floor facing the walkway. When I complained, the desk clerk claimed that nothing was available. However, when the "butler" took us to our room, she showed us the mini-fridge, which had half-drank beverages in it! She looked horrified, took them out quickly, and left us in the room. I went back to the front desk to ask to given another room. I told the desk clerk that we were on our honeymoon, and he replied, "Everyone here is on their honeymoon!" Way to make a girl feel special. Once I explained the half-drank beverages in our room, he found us a corner room on the third floor - so apparently, there were other rooms available! Funny about that. The desk staff was extremely rude and not helpful.

Our trip did improve from there. The beaches are beautiful - while we were there, workers raked up the seaweed daily so it was not a problem. You do have to get to the beach early, before 7 am, if you want a hut with a good view. The pool was okay - the water was too warm to swim in, for the most part. The pool bar is nice but closes at 5 pm, way too early! There's another bar on the beach that we went to often. Drinks are strong - and hopefully you like rum! The food was not great, as others noted. But it's worth make reservations. Those restaurants tend to accept your reservation even if you do not show up at the exact right time, so we still felt like we had some flexibility.

If I were to go back, I'd try a different resort.

Room Tip: 3rd floor, corner are large with more privacy
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Heather J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, CO
Level Contributor
42 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 382 helpful votes
Reviewed September 13, 2011

From September 4, 2011 til September 11, 2011 we stayed at Gran Bahia Principe Ambar. It was a great hotel, but not one that we are likely to go back to. First getting there from Denver is a royal pain and we had everything that could go wrong, go wrong both going to and coming from the Ambar. Second, it was too large for us. And finally it is very international which requires the staff to be able to speak many languages and their command of English was not too good. It made it hard to communicate.

The buildings and the grounds are beautiful. We stay in room 68317 which is a corner room on the third floor. The bed is comfortable, there’s plenty of storage space, and the servicing the room was timely and done well. We called for turn down service on our first day there and we got it every night after that.

The check in lobby for the Ambar is also a lovely building but it is open air and in September it is very hot. Just off this lobby is the main buffet. We ate there every morning, but didn’t eat lunch or dinner there. We ate lunch at the outdoor grill just off the pool and the beach. For dinner we ate at Don Pablo, Bella Italia, Maiko, and El Olivio.

The menus for breakfast and lunch change very little (that was okay with me because I found some things I really liked). Jackie didn’t care for the breakfasts as she likes omelets, but enjoys the ones in Mexico more where there are more spices, peppers and sauces you can use with your omelet. The morning juices were also watered down and the bacon served in the morning was not very well cooked. I simply asked the man cooking the eggs to cook my bacon some more and that solved that problem.

Some people have asked on the forum if it was worth the extra money to stay at the Ambar (or if you are with young children the Esmeralda)? My answered would be absolutely yes. You have unlimited ala cartes and the beach at the Ambar was the best for the overall resort. You weren’t stuffed into a small beach. There were lots of palapas available any time of day, but if you wanted to be close to the ocean you needed to get a palapa early in the morning (prior to 9 am). I also read about people complaining about the seaweed on the beach. The first 4 days we were there, I thought these people were crazy as there wasn’t any seaweed. The next 4 days the beach was covered in seaweed. It just depends on what’s going on in the ocean as to whether you will have what was probably the most beautiful beach I’ve seen, or one that was pretty yucky.

Now for the GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY. Actually the good really means the Outstanding, the Bad means the OK and the Ugly is just plain Ugly.

The GOOD. We ate at Don Pablo three nights when we were there. It probably was the best AI restaurant I’ve ever eaten at. The service was outstanding as was the food. Jackie is a big lobster fan (she order it all three times) and she thought it was the best she ever ate (it was marinated and then grilled). I had the filet two of the nights and the roast duck the third. A word of warning. Because of the language difficulties you need to stay with rare, medium, or well done. I like my steak medium rare, but the first night with a little first aid, the filet might have recovered. I ordered it medium and it was closer to what I liked that was the rare steak I got. Both the steaks and the duck were very good. As for the dessert, I fell in love with the chocolate volcano. Absolutely wonderful food.

The workers at the resort were also outstanding if they could understand you. If they couldn’t it didn’t mean they were trying, but it did cause some problems.

The BAD (Okay). The drinks fall into this category. They varied a lot from bar to bar and some of them weren’t very good. They also have call liquor but charge extra for them. The house wine was just that, Okay. It was only 9% alcohol and very mild in taste. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t good. Fortunately we brought some of our own wine and they would serve us that in the Ala Cartes (we’ve been doing this for a couple of years to Mexico—both Mexico and DR you can bring in four bottle per adult duty free).

September is very hot both in Mexico and the DR. We brought a spray bottle for the beach to cool us down. Also if you got up early and got near the ocean, there was a pretty good breeze to help keep you cool.

Don’t forget your bug repellant. There are a lot of mosquitoes and other bugs at this time of year.

With the exception of Don Pablo, all the ala cartes had both an ala carte and a buffet part to them. If you are looking to be served everything, Don Pablo is the place for you.

The UGLY. We were really disappointed by the Maiko. We generally like the teppenyaki tables, but the show and the order of the food was not very good. There was no juggling of the spatulas and knives and he cooked the fried rice first, then the chicken and the beef and then served this. After we ate that he then cooked the salmon and the shrimp and then ended with the vegetables. We then went to regular tables to order dessert.

The resort is a very international resort and so you have a fair number of bare breasted women on the beach as well as a lot of speedo’s on the men. Believe me the people bearing their breasts and wearing speedos obviously don’t have mirrors in their homes or they never would go outside looking like they did. There also is a lot of smoking especially when you go to the shows at night and to the main lobbies where you are dropped off.

Overall, if you live on the East Coast I would recommend this to you. If you are traveling from the west, it wasn’t worth the hassle we went through to get there. But once you are there, make sure you don’t miss Don Pablo.

Room Tip: I requested a non-ground floor room with a king size bed and mentioned a third floor corner room wou...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank goodspkr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2011

We just got back from GBP Ambar and loved it. My second time there and it got even better.

Grounds were very nice. Rooms were also very nice as well. Food was pretty good for an all-inclusive. Drinks were good too. The place is part of a huge complex and if we didn't have any entertainment at ambar, we took a 10 mins walk over to the bavaro section where it is very lively. I've been to more than a dozen resorts and this one is my favourite. You get the best of everything. If you want a quieter pool and beach area, stay at ambar. If you're looking for something a little more lively, you can take a 5 mins stroll down the beach to the sister resort. No biggie. The only thing that I can recommend is that you book your dinner reservations with the hotel before you go on your trip. They're pretty good at handling that. Also, Don Pablo was a pretty damn good restaurant.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank at804
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Midwest City, Oklahoma
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2011

Every year we take a vacation to the carribean. We always look for a resort with an adults only section and this year we chose the Ambar. Of all the places we have stayed at this was by far the least favorite. It does have beautiful landscaping, a nice beach and beautiful rooms just like the other resorts. What separates this one from the others is the service. The resort is so huge with so many people that you will get zero personal service. It is really obvious that the staff is treated poorly by management because they pass that attitude right on to the customer. There is nothing going on at this place. They have a beautiful lobby but there is no entertainment. They have a beautiful pool with no music. Speaking of the pool, we stayed at this resort for 10 days and I did not get a lounge chair by the pool even once. unbelievable. And, this is the only resort that I have ever stayed at where they allow vendors to set up shop right in the middle of the resort and hound you to come to their stand. Usually this will take place at a resort on a specific day but at this resort they are there everyday. They also have people that hound you to buy their timeshare every time you go through the lobby. I'm on vacation, I don't want to be approached every time I try to pass through the lobby or through the middle of the resort to buy something I don't want. It gets old real fast. On our first day at the resort, we got on the train and started talking to another couple. They told us they were bored. We could't comprehend how they could be bored at such a large place. It didn't take long to figure it out though. They are really missing the boat on the entertainment section. This place has nothing to offer besides food and alcohol. My recomendation if you are going to Punta Cana is to stay at the Grand Palladium in the Royal Suites that place is absolutely wonderful with very friendly staff.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank BBbandit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed September 9, 2011

Great beach, fun pools, awesome food. We can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed February 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank oklahomatower
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dewsbury
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed September 5, 2011

We have just returned from a week in this hotel, please do not believe some of the things that people write. We have been to the Dominican several times and this is definitely the best hotel we have stayed in. We were warned from here that we would not be able to book in the other restaurants on site so on arrival we visited guest services and were immediately offered bookings in any of the restaurants for our stay. The pool area is great, the beach is not very wide but you can walk for miles in either direction on the sandy beach. If anything the beach in front of the hotel was a bit too crowded with beds although they were not over crowded with people. The staff were fabulous and always on hand to help. The rooms were great with a big bathroom and huge bed, but relatively small balcony. What isn't clear fromthe brochuresis that this hotel is part of a big complex and you can also drink and eat in any of the other htoels bars and restaurants, and all the evening entertainment is in the other hotels which a quite a walk. The hotel operates large golf buggies to transport you and these run very regularly over the whole site. The evening entertainment wasn't particularly our choice and was geared for families so we tended to stay around our htoel which was couples only. If you are looking for a lovely hotel with nice food good service and peaceful sunbathing, this is the hotel to choose.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank Collegegirls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Punta Cana
18.5 mi away
Alsol Del Mar
Alsol Del Mar
#45 of 111 in Punta Cana
947 reviews
16.4 mi away
AlSol Tiara Cap Cana
AlSol Tiara Cap Cana
#24 of 111 in Punta Cana
1,744 reviews
0.2 mi away
Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Green Don Pablo Collection
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.2 mi away
Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda Don Pablo Collection
52.0 mi away
Luxury Bahia Principe Bouganville Don Pablo Collection
0.6 mi away
Hotel Riu Palace Macao
Hotel Riu Palace Macao
#43 of 111 in Punta Cana
3,827 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection

Property: Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection
Address: Carretera Arena Gorda - Macao, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (Formerly Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Don Pablo Collection)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#12 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#30 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#42 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#45 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#45 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#45 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection 4*
Number of rooms: 528
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 2 pool Sun terrace with sun umbrellas and loungers Relaxation zone with Bali beds Outdoor Jacuzzi BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, 3 tennis courts, multi-sports court Water activity centre Motorised water sports (additionalcharge) WiFi access in the lobby (free) and in rooms (free) Entertainment amphitheatre Wedding gazebo 1 buffetrestaurant 3 speciality restaurants 4 bars 1 snack- bar Gazebo de bodas Smokers' lounge with bar service (cigar menu with additional charge) Punta Blanca Golf Club: 18 hole Punta Blanca Golf Club, designed by Nick Price (additional charge) Pueblo Principe: Shopping and Leisure Mall with local craft stores, live music, shows, stores, bars, karaoke, disco and casino. Rooms 528 Deluxe Junior Suites Room facilities: King size bed or two full size beds Ceiling fan Air conditioning Sitting area with sofa Terrace Fully-equipped bathroom with hydromassage bath tub and separate shower, hair dryer Bathrobe and slippers Don Pablo Collection amenities Direct phone line (additional charge for external calls) Alarm clock with iPod docking station Flat screen TV Coffee-making machine Minibar Safe Butler service 24 hour room service Evening turndown service Pillow menu 2 disabled rooms for a maximum of 3 adults Prime location right on the sea front Exclusive lake-style pool Aroma menu WiFi (free) Other services Medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Specialised service for organising weddings, incentive trips, events and anniversaries Personalised menus (for celiacs, diabetics, etc.) Available on request ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with BP USA TRAVEL INC, Expedia, BookIt.com, Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotwire, Booking.com, Hotels.com, TripOnline SA, Cancelon, Priceline, Cheap Tickets, getaroom.com and HotelQuickly so you can book your Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Ambar Hotel Punta Cana

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing