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“Same time, Same place, next year!”

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Secrets Royal Beach Punta Cana
Ranked #9 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed February 26, 2010

We just returned from the NH Royal Beach in Punta Cana. What a trip! If you're looking for sun, relaxation, first-class service and accomodations, this is your place. The girl at the front desk could use some "happy" pills, but she was the only one of the staff that wasn't friendly. Our room was wonderful. It overlooked the "lazy river". This is a brand new adults only resort so they are still working out some kinks. There was a shortage of towels daily and we had to call and ask for washclothes two out of the four days we were there. The Jacuzzi is located outside on the patio/balcony. We used it once. It wouldn't shut off and the drain plug wouldn't come out. Maintenance finally fixed it. Thank goodness we were on a ground floor or the people below us would have been flooded! But these issues were so minor in comparsion to the whole experience. Everything was first class.

We had use of the Real Arena next door and tried the Shore Grill for dinner. Reservations are a pain to deal with and after ours was mixed up, we were able to finally be seated at 9:30. It was NOT worth the wait. The steak was cut maybe 1/4" and was very tough. It's not really order off the menu so choices were limited to the main course. One small baked potato with sour cream poured over the top. I'm not a sour cream eater. I would never go back again. It was a waste of time. We all would say forget the hassle of reservations and just go to the buffet at the Royal Beach. We all, by far, enjoyed the buffet the best. It's not your typical buffet, by American standards. Everything was fresh, hot and plentiful. If you didn't like what was on the serving tables, they have a cook to order grill.

The staff at the Royal Beach were top notch. The beach was awesome! We were never bothered by vendors. They are not allowed on the beach. (Aside from the one group that you can book water sports with ,such as para-sailing, which was also awesome) You can book snorkeling and diving at the dive shop right on the beach. The beach is patroled 24/7 so we always felt safe.

The pool area was beautiful. The bartendars were outstanding. Waitstaff was on the ball with the exception of one or two. But there is always a bar to walk to within a short distance of anywhere on the beach or resort.

It was a perfect vacation and left us wanting more time. We do plan to go back next year.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank jo858wi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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8,077 - 8,083 of 9,998 reviews

Reviewed February 25, 2010

Beach: I’m a true beach-girl. A long beautiful beach is one of my main criteria when selecting a resort! The beach at the NH Royal Beach is very nice. Nice white sand. There are some algae that show up on the beach depending on the weather/ocean conditions but it is cleaned up every morning by hotel staff. We walked for about 2hrs both sides of the resort and there were always other resorts or condos. To be honest, we preferred the stretch of beach around the MoonPalace Resort since it was a less developed area – just nature. There are numerous huts setup and rows of palm trees each with 2 chairs under them. There were always huts available, no matter what time you showed up.
Pool: There is one main pool where the bar is located and then another lazy river type pool that whines around a good part of the resort. It’s simply beautiful! Some rooms are swim-up but we preferred the security of a higher floor.
Food: The buffet area is very small and can get a little busy at times. However, the quality of food was terrific. We are both vegetarians and I was worried when I saw how small the buffet was. I assumed that meant that the selection would be limited. Not the case at all! They just have smaller bowl therefore need to replenish the food more often (great since it means the food is always fresh!). The deserts were the best I’ve seen in the resort world. As usual, there were no vegetarian entrees listed on the restaurant menus but the chef made us special vegetarian dishes. They were as beautiful and artistic as the meals from the menu. At the Gran Baya Principe Ambar, the chef had brought us a bowl of white pasta with a dish of tomato sauce on the side - boring! The buffet is located just off the beach – it was wonderful to see the water as we were eating! Inside is smoke free but outside is not. It would be nice if they at least setup a smoke-free section. We actually changed tables a few times due to heavy smokers next to us and wind direction.
Rooms: We had opted for the Beach-view and obtained room 4378. It was worth it although the ocean view is from an angle, not straight forward. The decor of the room and of the entire resort is rather trendy, almost 70’s style. It was different from the more ‘Caribbean’ decor of other resort’s we’ve been to but beautiful! There is a Jacuzzi on the patio – nice touch. We had hot water issues a couple of days a supper time but not a big deal.
Grounds: This resort opened in Dec2009 and it shows. You can still see the square pieces of lawn as they were laid out. And there is a need for more flowers and bushes. The place has potential though and after a few years of growth will be quite nice I’m sure.
Staff: Simply the most friendly and kind people we’ve ever met! They were always smiling and seemed so please to serve us. They showed pride in their work. Jose always ensured that his ‘vegetarian’ friends were well taken care of with the chef.
Entertainment: there is a band that plays in the evenings outside the reception area. The shows at night are at the sister hotel, NH Real Arena. Compared to the other resorts we’ve been to, the shows were quite mediocre except for the circus show. We were a little disappointed. If you’re looking for ‘a party’, this resort is not for you. It was relaxing and quiet – just what we wanted.

Other: Internet was not free ($4 for 15 minutes) and was run by an outside company, not the resort. A little expensive. Check out is at noon and our departure was for 6h45pm therefore late check-out would have been expensive ($15 per hour). They have a curtosy room where you can change and shower after you've checked out. And they lock up your luggage for the day. We were able to enjoy the entire day at the beach before leaving!

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank HoneyBear7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2010

We stayed for a week at the NH Royal Beach. First of all, everyone at the NH Royal Beach has access to the NH Arena (Edenh)... and people in dominican pronounce it "ENE HACHE" or something like that.

We loved the fact that NH Royal was adults only. It made the resort very relaxing compared to the Arena who seemed really overcrowded with screaming kids and no available seats by the pool which by the way looks like it had dirty water.

But the NH Royal had amazingly clean pools. We liked the lazy river pool where we could have a lot of privacy if we wanted. The Pool bar was never too busy ... in fact all the bars were never too busy and it never took long to get a drink. There were people walking around at all time of day to serve us drinks if we wanted but dont expect to get ur drink fast from them. We also got a drink in a coconut or a pinapple at the pool bar which was a nice touch.

The beach is very nice and the vendors are kept off the resort. Dominican vendors are VERY annoying so we were glad they kept them away from us. There are plenty of chairs available at the beach and by the pool. Even the evening shows by the lobby bar was never really full. The drinks are certainly not watered down either!

The resort is new but all is fully functional except for a few water fountains. The rooms are modern and clean. The Jacuzzi on every patio is nice but note that you dont have a bathtub in the room. The fridge was always stocked with 2 beers, a chip, water bottles and pop.

The food and service at the buffet is very good... but a lot of time we felt annoyed when we were interupted every 2 minutes for them to fill up our glasses even when we did not want any more water or wine in our glass. We also felt annoyed when we mistakenly sat in the mexican restaurant section outside and we had to pick up our plates and change table. There were no signs to indicate we could not sit there. Note that you also MUST wear long pants for dinners...including the buffet. We were turned around and could not eat cause my husband was wearing shorts one night... thank god he had one pair of pants or else we had to starve! Other than that, there is not plenty of choices at the buffet but everything was good. We also tried the Mexican a la carte which was excellent. We also tried the Grill on the arena section which was ok but not as good as the NH Royal Buffet. We didnt try any other a la carte cause we had to wait for almost an hour when there was only 4 people in front of us to reserve. The man doing reservations on that morning was extremely slow to the point that the lady in front of us had to tell him to hurry up. He spoke in a very low voice with a very bad accent and everything he did seemed like it was done in slow motion. In the end we gave up and didnt reserve anything more.

There is a big language barrier in this resort. I dont expect anyone to speak perfect french or english in a spanish country but they need a few more people who speaks better because a lot of time when we needed to explain anything to them they couldnt understand us, we couldnt understand them and it was very confusing. At least they could provide more information written in english in the room.

For example...Our room didnt have a room service menu... and when we tried to call ... we couldnt understand what the person was saying on the phone when we asked what they had on their menu... and then we were told we had to pay! So we never bothered calling again... that was very disapointing since the buffet restaurant closes early (around 10:30am I think) for breakfast and only opens again at 1pm for lunch. When we arrived back home I checked the Sunwing website says that it had 24 hours room service included in the all inclusive.

There is no ATM machine at the resort ... so bring cash!

By the way, I know this is not the fault of the resort, but for those booking with Sunwing, the rep was never available to help you out with anything.... so you have to figure everything out by yourself. Plus we had to pay for phone charge to confirm our flight back home with them since the rep was never there.

We went to Cuba, Aruba, Mexico and Hawaii before and we dont intend to go back to Dominican because those other places were nicer. But if you like the Dominican, we would recommend this resort.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank ladolly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2010

The room is spacious and nice as 5 star resort. The staff was helpful and accommodating. The restaurants are upscale and service was good. The beach front yoga instructor was wonderful. Sometimes, it would have been nicer if the staff spoke English a little it better. Over all our stay was enjoyable and relaxing. The spa on the beach front was noisy. Did not enjoy it as I should have. Separating folks with kids and other adults was a great idea.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank tedkidane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2010

We have traveled all over the Caribbean, from Ritz-Carltons in the Caymans and Jamaica to The Cove in Atlantis to smaller more intimate hotels on St Lucia and this place is really great. It just openend in Dec of 2009 so everything is brand new, clean and really nice. The adult only vibe is relaxing but there was also some rowdy couples at the swim up bar that were having more energetic fun if that's what you are looking for. The food at the buffet (we never did crack the code to get into the specialty restaurants) was really quite good, there were different "theme" nights and each day, and along with the regular items, at each meal, there were 5-6 different, unique, local items to try if you were feeling like it. The restaurant where the buffet was served was RIGHT on the beach and it was really beautiful. top notch. It diod not feel like an all inclusive. I kept waiting for the bill. Your servers offered mimosas/freshly squeezed oj with breakfast and beer/wine (a nice spanish white and red) with lunch and dinner.

The pool snakes for about 1/4 mile throughtout the property so you can choose to swim with people arounfdthe swim up bar or find your own little private area anywhere along the way. There are differnet areas to choose from, some covered, some open. Very nice.

The swim up bar was big and was located just along the beach, and you never had to wait more than 2 min for a drink. There was a really nice beach bar as well that mixed any kind of fruit for a colada or a smoothie until 6 pm.

Each night there was a mellowish live band that played in the plaza behind the lobby that provided entertainment until 11 pm.

The rooms are really nice, flat screens, huge, marbled showers with separate toilet areas. The maid service was impeccable.

Overall, the service was great. The staff was super trying to please at all times, often times going out of their way for special requests. they do not speak alot of english but, hey, it's the DR, another country. Think of it as an opportunity to brush off that high school spanish.

Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
4  Thank nychickinmiami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2010

In February 2009 we spent a week at the NH Eden Arena. A remarkable stay - staff, room, weather, all came together. The food, at the specialty ala carte restaurants , was superb.
A year later, February 2010, we checked in to the NH Eden Arena and were given a room overlooking a garbage dump (1407). Not good. We were then upgraded to the NH Royal Beach (next door) for a mere $30 per night. The Royal Beach is slightly upscale, no kids, and boasting "top shelf" liquors. The NH Royal Beach is a wonderful facility with a strange food policy. In fact, both the NH properties have given up "ala carte" menus in the specialty restaurants in favor of what I call "aggressive portion-control". You are given a choice of either meat or fish and then the four courses are delivered as fast as you can manage them. In the Italian (Cinque Terre) specialty restaurant, I was not sure what was on my antipasto plate - but the linguini with mushrooms was excellent - although the portion was about the size of a tablespoon. Later, at the Asian restaurant, we were given Hibachi (Teppanyaki) of questionable quality - then hustled away from the Hibachi tables to another area of the restaurant for tea and dessert so the grills could be reset for the next group of diners. At Pure in the NH Royal Beach facility, I still am not sure what I ate, though I had to send the tuna (about two ounces) back three times for more cooking. And so it goes. The buffet restaurants are still very good although you can't get a hard liquor drink at the one in Royal Beach. You must walk the entire length of the facility to the bar by the administration office, get your hard liquor, then walk back to the buffet restaurant. The food policy has changed so much in one year, we are taking the NH hotels off our list. Superb hotel facility, bizarre food policy.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank v100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2010

Stayed ay NH Royal Beach Jan 30-Feb 6. My friend and i were looking for a place to chill out and relax not surrounded by kids and spring-breakers and on that front - NHRB fit the bill.
I'll try to break this down as simply as possible.

Room: 5-275. Very nice. I liked the simple understated decor. The room was spacious with plenty of room. We had a partial view of the ocean which was nice. We were away from the 'noise' of the lobby area which was what we asked for.
A knob did come off the dresser at first pull and remained off but I blame housekeeping for that one because she sucked even with leaving money for her everyday. Room was never really 'clean' and some debris remianed in corner of bathroom all week (mop anyone?) A little scarce on the towel action and most of the week we didn't have hot water. The terrace was nice. A little small and i don't quite understand the point of the jacuzzi tub which is rather small and brightly lit but hey - to each his own.

Grounds: Very nice. The resort is new - as are the plantings so the lushness isn't there yet. Most of the wildlife hasn't had time to repopulate - which I was a bit bummed about but that's nature - it just has to run its course. However, on that same note: I am used to staying in DR hotels with fish, ducks, geese, flamingos, etc. there's none of that here. All fresh water. no birds to be seen.

Service: the people were very nice. we wanted for nothing (except hot water) most of the time and the beach and pool drink service is a nice touch. i lived on banana smoothies during the day - just fantastic! the waitstaff were top notch and really made an effort. some communication issues but hey - they speak spanish. i muddled through. no biggie.

Food: I am by no means a foodie but i found the food pretty darn good as far as buffets go. the buffet at RB was definitely a step up from the Arena buffet (tried one night). I would have liked to see more shellfish (shrimp and lobster) but we were never really dissatisfied with our food choices. We also ate at Pure and Senses. Both were good but just not worth the hype of a 6-7 course meal over the course of 2 hours. Stick to the buffet. We tried the beach buffet for lunch one day because we were wet and found ourselves sitting for 20 minutes waiting for a server to bring utensils and water. We promptly went back to Royal Beach - where we remained the rest of the week.

Room Service: We ordered breakfast one day because we were leaving early for our nightmare Apple excursion. They arrived within 15 minutes and everything was fresh.

Entertainment: We didn't go to a single show. We did hang in the RB outdoor area drinking champagne or port late at night listening to the live music provided at night. It was nice.

Beach: no brainer. always perfect. never fails. TONS of palapas and chairs. this was one of the main reasons we upgraded. i refuse to fight for a lounger! :) Had a few issues with people sneaking over from Arena but security monitors the wristbands and they were promptly returned to their side of the resort. you really do get what you pay for.

Pool: very very beautiful and relaxing! what a joy to sit and read a book and not have to be accosted to play bingo, vollleyball, beer pong etc! set the bar to go 'adults only' from here on out. :)

Excusrions: booked the room through Apple and so booked one of their excursions. Every single one of them is a booze cruise disguised as something else. We went to Saona which was supposed to be a pristine, untouched island off the coast of DR. what a joke! It took us... omg.... 4 hours to get there with bus transfers, we spent 2.5 on Saona itself with a crappy BBQ and what else, run fest then headed back on a catamaran (another 2-3 hours of RUM) then a bus back with a SHOPPING stop (absurd). we were literally out of the hotel for 13 hours. Will never book another excursion again.
Alternatively, we booked snorkeling through the dive shop - $25. for an hour. we wanted a simple jump-off-the-side-of-the-boat snorkeling thing and this was perfect!
Grab some bread and bananas from the buffet! :)

Shopping/Vendors: We had little of that nonsense on the beach with people coming up to you. If you walk down the beach to the left there's an outdoor market for all those crappo DR knick-knacks. steer clear of the cigars (ALL fakes and have insects in them). and whatever price they say cut by 80%. it's all crap though - wouldn't even bother.

Overall: I have stayed at Majestic Colonial (pre-Elegance), Iberostar Bavaro and numerous other DR hotels. I expected NHRB to be the same caliber of the above 2 monetioned and it simply was not. While the room was nice and new - the housekeeping and lack of room detail (fresh fruit, extra water, turn down service, towel animals, flowers?) I can't say this is a 4.5 star luxury hotel - i just can't . they're just not there yet. However, in all fairness we were looking for a chill relaxing adult only place to hang our heads for a week and for that - this place was great. I'd recommend giving it a go - but if you're looking for luxury - even DR luxury - you will not find it here.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with friends
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2  Thank damselfly2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secrets Royal Beach Punta Cana

Address: Ave Alemania S/N | El Cortecito, Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
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 Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
#4 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#7 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#9 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#11 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $282 - $756 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Secrets Royal Beach Punta Cana 4.5*
Number of rooms: 465
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideally situated on the picturesque palm-studded, sugar white Playa Bavaro beach on the eastern coastline of the Dominican Republic, Secrets Royal Beach Punta Cana offers adults all the privileges of Unlimited-Luxury(R). Guests will immediately be embraced within an extraordinary environment where luxury illuminates every detail and our high level of personal service is unmatched. To ensure your romantic escape is everything you've imagined, every detail of your stay will be flawlessly provided and superbly attended to. From the fine quality linens to the daily refreshed mini bar and the unlimited premium brand beverages to the pool and beach wait service. You'll be immersed within a world of stunning architectural design coupled with resplendent views of the lush gardens, crystal-clear Caribbean Sea and dazzling swimming pools. This tranquil, romantic haven in Playa Bavaro is like nothing else you've ever experienced before. ... more   less 
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Secrets Royal Beach Hotel Punta Cana

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