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“Great family trip to Punta Cana”

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Club Med Punta Cana
Ranked #43 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 4, 2013

Just returned from a wonderful week at Club Med. Traveled with a family of 10, including three children (6, 3 and 20 months). It was relaxing and fun and everyone was sad to leave. Here are the details:

The grounds / pool:
Absolutely beautiful, well manicured and maintained. It's a large property and a little spread out, but the paths to walk along are lovely and we enjoyed the strolls. There's just one pool, but it was big enough to never feel crowded. There's a very wide shallow area where the younger children could safely play for hours. Chairs around the pool do fill up quickly, so early risers benefit, but they turn over mid-day as people left for lunch, and we never really had any trouble finding a place to leave our things and sit. We felt comfortable leaving bags with cell phones and ipads by the pool for hours - they were untouched.

The beach:
Spectacular. Soft, white pink sand and clear blue, warm water. There were plenty of chairs, but little shade other than palm trees. There's a large palapa on the beach where they offer yoga and zumba classes and a beach volleyball court. There's also a smaller snack and drink bar by the water - this was good for a break from the sun, but food here wasn't the best.

Activities:
This was one of the best aspects of the trip, there were lots of great activities for all ages. In addition to daily zumba, water aerobics, a game of volleyball and the gym, we also took a windsurfing class, scuba, ping pong, trapeze, soccer, tennis and archery. All included. Staff was helpful and lovely. There's nightly entertainment in the theater, but it can be missed, although the kids enjoyed it. Also live music in the main bar.

Kids:
The room was outfitted with a pack and play, stroller and baby bath tub, all came in handy and were in fairly good condition. My 6-year-old niece spent two days at the mini club, which she loved. The staff is really engaging and sweet with the kids. They are mostly French-speaking, but she made some American friends and felt totally comfortable. The baby pool was nice enough, but the kids preferred the larger pool. They did make use of the outdoor play yard at the petit club.

Rooms:
This is our only critique. The rooms we were in could use a little updating. The AC was just so so, passable for my family, but my sister's room barely worked. They complained and were moved to another room nearby. There was a very minor ant issue, but they sprayed and it was fine. Otherwise, they were comfortable and spacious enough. Some rooms had patios, some didn't. Families with young children should request a first floor room (there are no elevators) nearby the main entrance. It's the most centrally located spot so was easy to access the pool, restaurants, etc. There are other buildings that are much farther out and I imagine the walks from them can get annoying.

Food:
This was our biggest question mark when booking, but we were pleasantly surprised. We ate in Hispaniola for nearly every meal since it was fairly open and there was always a nice breeze and beautiful view. The menu changes slightly each night to a different cuisine and while some options where better than others, we always found something we enjoyed. There are also daily standards that you could rely on, like pasta and roasted chicken. Plenty of options and easy choices for the kids like french fries, chicken tenders, hot dogs, mashed potatoes, fresh fruit, etc. You have to ask for bottled water at the restaurants, but mid-week we stopped asking and drank the filtered tap water and no one had a problem. Our rooms were always stocked with large bottles of water, but there were no other drinks in the mini fridge. Drinks are what you'd expect at an all-inclusive, not top-shelf, but fine.

Additional:
- Weather was incredible. 85 degrees, hot during the day, and nice breeze during the evenings, not too humid. Bring lots of sunscreen, it was very expensive to buy it there and they only had SPF 15. It rained twice, once in the evening and once overnight into the am until about 10, but then cleared up and was beautiful again.
- There are photographers that roam around to capture pics and you can check them out every day at a computer station. It was fun to review the pictures at the end of the day. Packages are expensive, starting at $100 for 10 pics, or $20 for a single digital shot.
- Airport arrival was quick and easy, but return is a hassle. Long lines and some waiting in the heat outdoors and on the tarmac. My brother-in-law gave a $20 to the right person who got us priority access, which helped speed us through quite a bit. But be prepared to keep the kids entertained. There are decent food options in the airport, but lame souvenir options.
-To charge things to the room (like toys from the gift shop or top-shelf liquor), you need to open an account at the front desk first. I suggest doing that when you arrive to make the process smoother.

If you're very particular about the rooms, you might prefer a newer property, but any issues were easily overlooked as we spent very little time indoors. Overall, it was an excellent time and we would recommend it to families with younger children.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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Thank kknyny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Public Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 28, 2013

Dear kknyny,

Thank you for sharing your recent Club Med experience with us. We appreciate greatly your detailed feedback, as we are always looking to to ensure our resort provides the best experience for our valued guests. We’re glad you and your family enjoyed so many different aspects of your stay, particularly the daily activities. Thanks again for telling us about your vacation, and we look forward to seeing you and your family soon.

Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed May 4, 2013

We were at Club Med Punta Cana for the last week of April 2013 with our 3 year old and our 14 month old. In many ways we were impressed with the resort. I would rate it maybe a 3.5 out of 5 rather than a 3. It has great facilities for kids in terms of shallow pools with slides and splash pad features as well as shaded swim areas and a shaded playground. The facilities could use a bit more maintenace and cleaning. Some parts of the playground were damaged and some of the water features did not work. I also noticed trash in the baby pool deck area (a used band-aid, a bottle cap, a balloon) that was there for days in a row. In any case, our little ones were not picky about these things and they enjoyed the facilities greatly.
The real issue for our family was the dinner hours for the restaurants. Considering that this is a family resort, I assumed that there would be flexible meal times appropriate for little ones. We were shocked to find out that the 2 buffet restaurants did not open for dinner service until 6:30 and 6:45 respectively. If I had known about the restaurant hours in advance we probably would not have booked this trip. For our kids, who are used to having dinner at 5pm and being in bed by 7pm, the late dinner was a huge issue. Every night we were coping with tired, cranky kids (ours and others') melting down at dinner. There is a snack bar that serves a very limited burger and fries type fare from 11am to 1am but the food there turned out to be almost inedible. We tried it once for the whole family but everything (except the fries) was so bad that we had to go to the buffet for dinner anyway.
On the plus side, there is a baby room available that has milk, yogourt and some baby food available 24 hours a day. This might solve the issue for families with younger babies but not for little ones who are at the table food stage.
The resort does have lots of great activities available (tennis, trapeze school, archery, windsurfing, etc, etc) so the resort is HUGE. We didn't bring a stroller but luckily the resort provided one. In the end, we wished that we had also brought a stroller ourselves so that we would have a stroller for each kid. Even with a reasonnably central room location (Mariposa), the distances to walk between activities were an issue. After the first couple of days, we ended up pushing our 3 year old in the stroller and carrying our 1 year old everywhere.
We did not sign our kids up for the baby club/kids club but the staff for these clubs did seem to be enthusiastic and most kids were having fun. The majority of the guests at the resort are French speaking so I'm not sure how an English speaking child would find the experience in the kids club. We mostly heard the staff speaking French with a few English words thrown in here and there. Personally, I did not think that there was enough supervision during the swimming portion of the program. For 30 kids around age 7, there were 2 staff members as well as one lifeguard. However, the staff was just playing with a few kids, rather than supervising the whole group. At one point it became clear that a group of boys was chasing a girl back and forth around the pool and she was gettig very upset about the bullying. The staff was oblivious until we had to call it to their attention. Ten minutes later the group was targeting a different girl and the staff still did not notice. There was also a section of the pool behind the slides that was completely out of view of both the lifeguard and the other staff members.
The resort's Baby Club also had an outbreak of Hand, Foot and Mouth disease for the whole time that we were there. We saw several babies that were infected but the families were not warned before putting their baby into the baby club. We also heard from one couple that they had been told by the resort that there were no other infected babies when it was quite clear just by looking around at the other guests that there was a bit of an epidemic. We thought that we had avoided it since we stayed away from the baby club and the infected babies. However, now that we are home from vacation for 2 days, our little boy has started to show symptoms. I guess that all of the high chairs and other communal baby items are contaminated.
So that's about it. Strangely, after all of the issues, we are still debating whether we would return to this resort. The kids' pools and playgrounds were such a bonus and the family room provided a good sleeping arrangement with separate areas for parents and kids. We also had a fantastic time at the trapeze school. It is very well run (MadMax is super!!) and was such a good experience that we would consider going back to the resort just for the trapeze. So, there you have it. If your kids can handle eating late and you aren't expecting anything too fancy then this could be a great family vacation for you.

Room Tip: Based on previous reviews we had requested to be in either Colon or Ovando. When we arrived we were...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Jen O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Public Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 28, 2013

Dear Jen O,

Thank you for writing a review of your recent family vacation to Club Med Punta Cana. We appreciate all of your feedback, and take your feedback into considerations as we’re always looking to improve the experience for our guests. Furthermore, we are pleased to hear that your children enjoyed the kids’ pools and amenities, as well as the Trapeze School. Thank you again for your review, and we hope to have you and your family back soon.

Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed May 3, 2013

Our group of 10 (7 adults, 3 kids ages 2-6yrs) just returned from a really wonderful week at the property. Among the terrific things about the resort - the varied, unique, fun and non-stop activities (trapeze, zumba, windsurfing!); the (mostly) engaging, friendly, and helpful staff; the lovely and well-kept grounds; the better-than-expected and varied food offerings (particularly in the Hispaniola); the stunning beach. The one significant downside was the hotel room. We were initially placed in a room without working AC and a terribly moldy odor. The next day we were moved a few doors down to a room that had good AC and no problematic smell, which was a relief. But even still, the building that we were in (Colon) appeared to be old and very rundown. Despite efforts by the hard-working and ever present house-keeping staff, the room just never felt particularly clean or comfortable. For the price, it would have been nice to have a room that was a bit more welcoming. But our objective wasn't to spend much time in the room, so it didn't take away from our experience overall. Not sure we would return to Club Med next time, but I have no regrets since there was so much about our trip that was truly special and gave us loads of happy memories.

Room Tip: Colon building was well-placed in a very large property, but was old and not particularly nice. Not...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank TravelEK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Public Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 28, 2013

Dear TravelEK,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review of your recent stay at Club Med Punta Cana. We appreciate all of your comments, and will pass them along to the proper management teams. We are pleased that you enjoyed the beach, food, and unique activities that Punta Cana has to offer! Thanks again for your evaluation, and we hope to see you back at a Club Med resort.

Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed May 1, 2013

My husband, 1 year old and I spent a week in the Dominican at Club Med. We had a fantastic trip. The staff were extremely friendly for the most part, particularly Josee and Daphne at the baby club, Eddy on the tennis courts and Blasina, Anjela at the Hispaniola restaurant. The only service area that was lacking was the reception where there was little energy to fix our phone problem (see below) and a lack of English (all French/Spanish speaking).

The food was varied and of a high standard given the large crowd (up to 1,800 capacity but at 1,000 the week we were there). The kids all seemed to love the clubs. Our air con had a rattling sound which was fixed overnight. Our phone didn't work and that took 3 days to fix but otherwise we had no complaints. Highly recommended!

Room Tip: We stayed in Columbus which was right by the bottle room/kids club and only a short walk to the pool...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank 1DaveMac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Guest Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear 1DaveMac,
Thank you for posting a review about our Punta Cana resort. We're pleased to hear you enjoyed your stay, and that you thought our Kids Club and dining options were fantastic. We're also thrilled to hear you'd recommend our resort to others! Thank you again for taking the time to share about your stay, and we hope you visit again soon!
Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed April 30, 2013

Our week stay, a first time at a Club Med, on a mini-family reunion was fun with 8 of us including a 23 month old, 2 senior couples, single uncle and young 30-somethings. As Seniors we enjoyed our 1st floor room despite some bathroom plumbing issues that were addressed. We suspect that our building "Santa Maria" will be one to be soon renovated - other buildings are in that process. Room was clean, quiet and bed comfortable. AC worked well. Buffet food was excellent and varied to suit all tastes; each day had a different national theme. We got plenty of exercise walking between the various activities. Staff was over-the-top friendly; they are encouraged to "mix" with the guests. It was explained to us that Club Med was founded in 1950 in France to promote friendship among nations after WW II. We saw much happy family solidarity judging from all the multi-generational visitors from Canada, France and a few from the U.S. NIm, one of the G.O's (Club Med staff), particularly exemplified a fine Club Med staff member. One never felt any Disney-like crowds. Swimming pool went from very shallow for small children to neck deep for experienced swimmers. All grounds were very clean and tastefully manicured. French was the dominant language; "upper" staff also spoke some English and sometimes Spanish and room staff only Spanish. None of this bothered us; gave the place a positive international ambiance. Our group did kayaking, sailing, wind surfing and swam in the pool and the stupendously gorgeous azure sea. Excellent place to relax for a family reunion in a gorgeous tropical setting - something for everyone.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Thank Voyager7756
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Guest Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear Voyager7756,
Thank you for sharing about your vacation at our Club Med Punta Cana resort. It makes us so happy to hear you and your family had a wonderful time! We're especially glad you found our facilities, dining options, and activities to be awesome. Thanks again for posting a review, and we hope you visit again for more family reunions!
Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed April 22, 2013

We are back from another amazing two weeks in Club Med Punta Cana.
The G.O’s (Gentils Organiser = Club Med staff) were all so friendly!
Same goes for the G.E.’s (Gentils Employees = House keeping, gardeners and security guards) and all the restoration staff. They happily take a few minutes to answer a question, strike a conversation and even give us a chance to practice our Spanish.
For us the mix of languages, French, English and Spanish, was a great plus. It added an international dimension to our holidays.
We didn’t care much for the Invited Artist who played the guitar and sang American song at the bar before supper. He was very good, but we didn’t come to the Dominican Republic to listen to North American English musique; we would have very much preferred some local Latino talents.
Yes, some buildings are older but they are very clean and well maintained (We didn’t spend much time in our room anyways!).
The beach is one of the best; very private, large enough and secure. I saw many fish every days snorkeling just off the main beach.
The food: as usual you can’t please everyone all the time but you would be hard pressed to be disappointed. There is such a variety of meat, fish, veggie, cheese, desert, fruits… All very good and well presented.
It would be nice for the restaurant staff to actively identify people who want to seat a a communal table with other people. Eating alone is not pleasant.
What makes Club Med special is the mind set of the G.O’s and most G.M’s (Gentils Members = us, clients). The G.O’s will easily strike a conversation and most G.M.’s are also ready for interaction. If you do not appreciate this type of camaraderie you can keep your distance, and no one will challenge you. The beach after the sailing shack is very quiet. There is plenty of space and shade on the beach or on the grass.
The kids are there but they are busy doing their own things. Not much of a problem for the adults.
I would like to mention so many of the G.O’s who made a difference; just to name a few:
Kary, Marielle and Roody at the Public Relation desk: very friendly and always ready to help.
Leonel and Fatima at the boutique.
Joan, the very friendly Beach Boy.
Folka and Mercedes (from the kid’s club)
Noel, Richard and Sam (from the bar team)
Kim, Deneen, Eden, Victor, Radhames, Ramos.
Annick, one of the nurse with a singing voice like you would not believe!
Edouardo (Chief of Village / Manager / Director) and Alex (Chief of sports).
It’s not fair to stop here but the list could go on an on…
Thank you all, merci, muchas gracias a todos.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank f b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Guest Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear f b,
Thank you for taking the time to review our Punta Cana resort. We are ecstatic to hear you had a marvelous vacation and that you enjoyed all our resort has to offer. It also makes us extremely glad to know our staff exceeded your every expectation. Thank you again for sharing your thoughts, and we hope you return in the near future!
Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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Reviewed April 22, 2013

We just returned from our yearly family vacation, six adults and six kids aged from 13 to seven.

The food was plentiful and a very good selection for any palate.

The children had a great time and four of them did the trapeze twice a day, every day. We have great pictures.

There is some room for improvement. The nightly entertainment for adults is lacking and the principal language spoken in all events is French with a poor English condensed version.
Stay away from the extras. Very expensive and not worth it.

Would I return? Yes, but I would request a ground floor room. I have severe difficulty with stairs and they put me two floors up with no elevator.

Room Tip: If you travel with several families like we did, 2, 4, and 6 you might end up in three different bui...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Walter W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
clubmedofficial, Guest Relations Manager at Club Med Punta Cana, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2013

Dear Walter W,
Thank you for posting a review about our Punta Cana resort. We're so glad you and your family had a terrific time, and that you enjoyed all our resort has to offer such as the dining options and activities. Please know we are always looking for ways to improve and truly appreciate your insights. We're thrilled you had a fantastic vacation, and we'd love for you to visit again soon!
Kind Regards,
Your Club Med Team

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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 Club Med Punta Cana

Address: Apartado Postal | 106 Higuey Provincia La Altagracia, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > La Altagracia Province > Punta Cana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#18 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#37 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#39 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#40 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#41 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $290 - $1,083 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Club Med Punta Cana 4*
Number of rooms: 631
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover the Dominican Republic in this all-inclusive family resort, designed over a long white-sand beach, considered to be the finest in the world. Travel to Club Med Punta Cana with your family and enjoy a carefree all-inclusive vacation in this resort which flourishes beside a lagoon surrounded by magnificent grove of coconut palms. Fun moments filled with memories await your kids at Club Med world-famous children's clubs with dedicated activities and sports for children and teenagers from morning to evening, for each age group, and all coordinated by qualified and enthusiastic professionals. This newly redesigned resort has something for everyone, with amenities such as: Baby Club Med™*, a new Spa* with private pool access, exclusive private Oceanfront Family Suites, new dedicated programs for Mini Club Med™ including Le Petit Tennis(R), circus school and Baby Gym(R), Passworld for teens, and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Club Med Punta Cana Hotel Punta Cana
Punta Cana Club Med
Club Med Dominican Republic

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