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“Good resort for our first all inclusive trip”

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Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #49 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 5, 2014

This was my husband and I's first all inclusive vacation and this was the resort our travel agent booked us for our honeymoon. Overall the stay was good but there are a few things that happened while we were there that other travelers should know about. First of all the rooms weren't in the greatest of shape. In our room, the towel rack and a lamp were falling off the walls. Our jets on our bathtub wouldn't turn on or off without banging on the button. On our first night there after a 12 hour travel day, we were exhausted after traveling so when we finally got to the resort on the first night we decided to take a bath at 10 pm. I guess the jets on the tub were too loud so we didn't hear housekeeping knocking on our door so they came in our room by themselves at 10 at night!!! We were outraged and called to the front desk to tell them and it was apparently our fault because their housekeeping staff is instructed to turn down the beds. I have never heard of such a practice or of housekeeping entering a room at 10 at night so we were told if we didn't want them coming in to keep our do not disturb sign out. Needless to say we had ours on the door the rest of the trip! Our air conditioning stopped working once while we were there but maintenance came and fixed it soon after. We also had a problem with ants who only appeared in the sink after pouring something sweet down it according to the staff. The beach here is beautiful but so crowded. Overall most of the staff were always pleasant, with the exception of one pool bartender whose name I cannot remember. One great thing about this resort is the cleanliness, at every time of the day there are groundspeople cleaning and scrubbing the resort. I will definitely be returning to the Dominican Republic and would recommend this resort to other people especially first timers but I won't choose this resort to return to.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank behrle13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2014

Dear guest,

Thank you for mentioning the perfect cleanliness we have in our resort and for taking the time to post a review here.

Our sincerest apologies for not fulfill your complete expectations and for the inconveniences you experienced.

Thank you for your opinion and I would like to see you back in any of our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, your best hotel in Punta Cana.

Best regards,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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4,466 - 4,472 of 10,423 reviews

Reviewed February 5, 2014

I was very happy with this resort. Our room was very close to the beach and pool which was amazing. We had perfect weather everyday. Food and drinks were fantastic. I really miss having my mimosas every morning. They also made great iced coffee at the lobby bar. The beach was one of the nicest I have seen. Pool was also very nice and warm. It is a very quiet resort so if you like a lot of action it may not be the place for you.

  • Stayed: January 2014
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3  Thank sunsandseapalmtrees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2014

Dear customer,

Thanks for your kind message, which inspires us in our commitment to provide the most unforgettable experiences to our visitors.

We are already looking forward to have you with us again in Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a 5 star experience in the Dominican Republic.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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Reviewed February 5, 2014

We were, me and my husband, at the Ambar for 15 days (2014/jan. 3 - jan.17).

It was not our first trip in Dominican Republic, but at this time, we were looking for good food and for really nice place and Ambar was what we have been looking for ! We ate very well at each restaurant, and the food at the Ambar was a little bit better than the food at the others restaurants of Grand Bahia Principe (we had access to all restaurants).

We really like the beach, the Ambar section was more emply and quiet than others sections of the same hotel. We like to do some yoga, pilates, tai-chi courses in the morning. Thanks to the teacher !

Especially, special thanks to Edward, one of the waiters : attentive, funny, endearing. We'll never forget the experience at this ressort and the employees.

Carine & Benoit, Québec, Canada

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Carine T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2014

Dear Carine and Benoit,

I am happy to know that you achieved your goal on vacation at our Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Don Pablo Collection. Thank you for preferring us this time you came to Dominican Republic.

Receive cordial greetings, All-inclusive luxury hotels on the Dominican Republic with Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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Reviewed February 4, 2014

This was the first time I had been to the Dominican Republic. My cousin and I went together for a week of rest and relaxation, as well as to get away from the freezing cold of winter in the northeast/midwest. We were there from January 23-30, 2014. The people there were extremely friendly, both those within our resort as well as the people we met while on the excursions we took off of the resort. The accommodations were great, it was a large room with two queen sized beds. We initially had some issues with television remote when we first got there (it didn't work), Carlos our "butler"/concierge made sure it worked...to the point that he made the maintenance men bring in a new television and remote. Every evening the linens and towels were all changed without any issue. We were located pretty close to the lobby of the Ambar, but still within short walking distance to the pool and beach. Like other reviews have mentioned, if you want a good spot at the beach...you need to get there early (around 0700-0800). The pool is a little bit less of an issue, since there are specific pools for guests of each of the resorts within the Bahia Principe. The food was great in all of the restaurants, Carlos helped get reservations for us for whichever restaurants we asked for within our resort. Word to the wise, make reservations as soon as you get there. Some of the restaurants like Don Pablo and Portofino are sometimes fully booked for days. Excursions...this was a slight issue since we knew which excursions we wanted to go on before we had arrived to DR, we were bit over-ambitious and booked our own excursions. We weren't aware that Apple Vacations had their own set of excursions that were "insured" or else we may have likely booked it through them instead. Word to the wise...don't buy anything from the merchants walking around on the beach (excursions, cigars, jewelry, art). Most of these products are not of great quality or are knockoffs (ex: a "new sealed" box of Cuban cigars made of banana leafs..but they'll let you try a real Cuban one to suck you into buying the new box). I would highly recommend asking your butler/concierge or your travel company to help you with recommendations in whom to approach for excursions/souvenirs/gifts once you get to the resort. Carlos would check up on us regularly during the evenings to make sure that we were doing alright and that everything was up to our expectations...which it always was. Carlos made sure that whatever questions we had were always answered. Whatever we needed, he basically helped make it happen. He was very professional, humble and hard working. Overall a great vacation and resort and I would definitely return.

Room Tip: There are no beach front view rooms...all of the resorts on the Grand Bahia Principe are walking dis...
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with friends
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6  Thank Glen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 5, 2014

Dear Glen,

We are proud to know that you had a wonderful vacation and we were able to exceed your expectations in your first time in DR. Moreover, it is an honor to know that you appreciate the effort and good work done by your butler Carlos to meet the needs of our guests.

Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a 5 star experience in Punta Cana.

Yours sincerely,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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Reviewed February 4, 2014

Great resort for adults only. Beautiful site, food quality above other all-inclusive visited previously in Riviera Maya. We will return and we strongly recommend. We stayed at the Ambar from Jan 10 to 17 2014.

Room Tip: Ask for first block of rooms close to the pool and the beach.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Gilles D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, customer service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 5, 2014

Dear Gilles,

It is a real pleasure to read that you had a fantastic first stay in Dominican Republic.

Thank you for your comments and for recommending us, I really appreciate it!

All-inclusive luxury hotels on the Dominican Republic with Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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Reviewed February 3, 2014

This was our first trip to Dominican Republic and we will definitely return! The people are so friendly, the beach beautiful and the resort great as well.We stayed at the Ambar from January 25-February 1st, 2 couples for a birthday celebration.I had emailed the hotel ahead of time to notifiy them of the special occasion and our rooms were decorated with balloons and flowers when we arrived. We did experience the pool towel problem that had been mentioned in other posts that the towels were missing from the room upon arrival, but a call to the emergency number (which was explained later was our butler??) took care of this quickly. We have stayed in a Bahia Principe in Jamaica and the room was exactly the same, nicely appointed and clean. We stayed in building 68 and found the location great. The Ambar resort was beautiful from the lobby to the restaurants, pool area and beach. We were also impressed with the food in the buffet as well as the A la Carte , in particular the Don Pablo. Juan in the Palmyra buffet was always smiling in the morning with a Mimosa or bloody Mary to offer, he is a great asset to the resort as is Marlene at the pool bar. Marlene was friendly and smiling and attentive. We found all of the staff great but Juan and Marlene stood out in particular with their excellent service. We also really appreciated the security around the pool that would eject the unruly and excessively drunk guests (and also the kids). Overall a great vacation and resort and we would definitely return.

Room Tip: email ahead to request a corner room as the room itself is larger as well as the balcony.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank KJORidgeway
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Customer Service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2014

Dear customer,

I greatly appreciate that you have chosen our Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar as your first experience in the Dominican Republic. It is an honor to know that our entire team working, especially Juan and Marlene, went above and beyond to make your trip memorable.

We are looking forward to welcoming you once again to demostrate our main goal with our guests.

All-inclusive luxury hotels on the Dominican Republic with Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts.

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 2, 2014

This was the first time that my wife and I had travelled out of the country on an all-inclusive basis, and we were deathly afraid that our expectations were too high.

They may be, but the Ambar met all our expectations and then some.

This was supposed to be a relaxing, power down vacation, to recover from a busy year, and prepare for a busy construction season ahead, and I think this trip did it and some.

We travelled with AirTransat Vacations out of Ontario, Canada. They were the weakest link in the whole chain. We booked early - August of last year - and had to follow up with them about our documents, and had more than a few emails asking detailed questions about the resort ignored and not returned. Too bad for them, as knowing what I know now, we'll bypass them for the next trip we plan and book.

Accomodation - top notch. Ambar being adult only - was a godsend. The Junior Suite had a fabulous bathroom with rainfall shower head and jacuzzi tub which my wife made use of on a number of nights. The suite was large and everything from the AC to the patio doors worked very well. The bed was made up each night with a new pattern of blankets and pillows which was unexpected and neat. We were in building 69 which was just about halfway between the pool and the Ambar lobby. We thought it was perfect. We were equidistant for walking between the two, and we suspect that since everyone here seems to recommend the buildings nearest the pool, our building was less occupied and therefore just that much more quieter. Note - the comments about noise resounding through the hallways at night is entirely accurate - but perhaps we were blessed and never were seriously disturbed by this.

Food - wow. Not knowing what to expect, the "Buffet" was more than I expected. In fact, there was supposed to be a slightly more formal dresscode for the Palmyra Buffet - collared shirts, golf shorts etc. at a minimum, and I thought for an adults only section that this was appropriate - and was dissapointed at the perhaps 25% of guests that dressed like slobs when heading into the buffet. If you think this buffet is like a McDonalds with a hot table - think again. Individual tables to which you are escorted - wait staff everywhere - linen tablecloths and napkins - well, I'm not old (42) but I was dissapointed that everyone did'nt treat the resort with the class and respect that they showed us, their guests, everywhere else. The a-la-carte restauraunts were phenomenal as well - our preferences were the Garden Grill (steakhous - open to all), Portofino (Italian - open to Ambar) and the Don Pablo (Gourmet - open to Ambar) which I would have rotated through again given the chance. Alcohol - wow - they need to have a resort wide course in what a shot glass is and how it gets used to MEASURE alcohol - every mixed drink I seemed to have was at least 50% alcohol - haha - what a complaint - I guess I am getting a little old, because I had already drank my fill by Wednesday and stuck to coffee and juices after that.

Grounds - pool, beach were all phenomenally beautiful. Everything in the pictures and in your mind and more. Downside - we were on vacation - and werent in the mood to get up to be at the pool or on the beach well before 8:00 to "reserve" a chair. We arent huge sun people, and spent some time out there - but really enjoyed time in the lounge/bar or our balcony reading or talking. Landscaping was beautiful everywhere we went.

Staff - phenomenal. Wouldnt have expected what we got. Everyone tries so hard - even with my two words of Spanish - if they didnt speak much English, we always managed to get through.

Things I wish I had been told in advance:

- Internet - while I was trying to stay away from work, it wasnt entirely possible - besides, both my wife and I are news junkies and like to keep up with the world and home. Had a hard time confirming what was available in the resort, so rented a "Gobecon" wireless internet hub and picked it up at the airport on the flight in - $40 for the box - it pulls in a 3G signal from a local wireless company and lets you wifi connect to it. Worked fine in our room, and although I didnt try it, I suspect it would work on the beach if you wanted it to (restruicted to the room was what I suspect - but dont know). While there we found out that for $50 you could have 24/7 access, but not 100% sure of just how far the coverage would go. Note that the 3G we had was VERY slow when compared to what we're used to at home. Tweets, email, Facebook was ok. Web pages took a while and videos were not worth the wait. One hour of internet was available in the main lobby each day - sorry - cant comment on this as we didnt try it.

- Local vendors - wow - talk about being able to sell ice to Eskimos. Our first full day we went walking / touring through the whole resort just to see whats what - and we got caught by the vendors in the Pueblo Principe (the large open square west of the main lobbies) and before we knew it, each of us was on the hook for $100 worth of trinkets. If you head here - be prepared to barter - if haggling isnt your thing, then stay away. The shops are OK - the guys in the centre are ruthless - :D. Beware - a few of the items I paid for I found in one of the Lobby Shops in the resort - and found that I paid more for them in the square - after haggling - then I could have paid in the store. Gave the guys his due though - thought I had done OK - but he got me.

- Entertainment - if you have the ability to amuse yourself - good. There isnt a tonne of activities to amuse yourself after dark. We didnt find an english language TV station - I would have paid a fortune for even CNN - and the "entertainment" in the central theatre was generally good and amusing - remember this aint Vegas. The Michael Jackson tribute was a hoot - the comedy night was impossible to follow in any of the languages they were trying to communicate in - and the circus night? That looked scary, and we boogied before it even started. Haha. But they meant well. But with the good weather, we spent a lot of time just walking through the complex - most of the architecture was very interesting, and it made for a very nice night.

We took one trip out of the resort - Dolphin Explorer to swim the dolphins - wow - well worth it and would recommend it.

As has been said before - bring a bunch of small US$ for tipping - I dont think we were out of line - a couple of dollars for smaller meals and drink service - a fiver or so for dinners - seemed appropriate even though we didnt see a whole lot of people tipping.

Would wholehartedly recommend this - if you know what you want. If you're looking for action, I dont think this is the place - so stay away - and leave it be the fabulous, quiet place its supposed to be for when we go back.

Room Tip: I personally think the buildings on the north side - against the property edge - are best as they...
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank DonSmail
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Customer Service at Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar Blue Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded February 3, 2014

Dear customer,

It is a great honor to know that we were able to fulfill your expectations more than you expected in our Luxury Bahia Principe Ambar and be assured that it is wonderful to know that you would consider coming back to our premises. Thanks for mentioning all the things that seemed good.

We apologize if you felt that at some point you did not received the treatment you deserved and for any inconvenience you experimented.

We are always at your disposal,

Vianca Graciano
Bahia Principe Bavaro Resort

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about 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
#44 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#45 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#46 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $166 - $461 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Ambar Hotel Punta Cana

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