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“Excellente”

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Excellence Punta Cana
Ranked #14 of 112 Hotels in Punta Cana
Reviewed April 8, 2013

We just spent 11 days at this resort and everything was Excellente. The food was really good and the people very friendly. Beach and pool service was awesome, look up Gabrielle at the beach and Yeffery at the pool for really great service. The weather was beautiful, the only downfall was the beach as it was Red Flagged every day due to really high waves. You had to watch out for the under toe. I would go back again to this resort.

Room Tip: We had Excellence Club so we had a beach view.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Steve1959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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6,615 - 6,621 of 13,348 reviews

Reviewed April 8, 2013

My husband an I vacationed at this resort two years ago and loved it!! We had a swim up suite which is one category up from the basic suite. We absolutely loved it, the rooms are very modern and I loved being able to open the patio door and get directly into the pool. The beds are a little hard but I just asked them to put an egg crate on the bed and it made all the difference!The nightly entertainment was great, we really enjoyed the Couples" themed show, Micheal Jackson show, and the Circus show. The resort grounds are lovely, we really enjoyed the garden area. The food varied by restaurant from okay to excellent. The beach grill was excellent,Spice is excellent,Lobster house is excellent, Oregano is not very good, Toscana was good,Barcalona was good, Chez Isabelle was excellent. The drinks were great and not watered down at all!! I lived off of Banana Mamas all week, make sure to try the drink that they serve out of the fresh coconuts! We really enjoyed this resort and the All-Adult luxury feel, I would recommend it to anyone who wants a romantic, luxurious, kid-free vacation!

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Natalie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

My wife and I traveled to this resort for our honeymoon. We were there Dec 29 through Jan 5th. As most of the reviews say, the road to the resort is a bit bumpy but once you get there, its totally worth it. The food was pretty good, obviously being a destination for people from all over the world, they do the best they can to satisfy a wide variety of expectations. The water was rough, but the beach was clean and well taken care of.

The one major issue I had...I'm a cigar smoker, and was in one of the best cigar countries in the world, but the guy selling cigars there was rude and arrogent. EVERYONE else working at the resort was friendly, all smiles, and always willing to help. The cigar guy, was a total ___.

We did upgrade to the Excellence Club, and it was totally worth it. We were in building 7, which is perfect. It is centrally located, easy access to the beach, and if you're on the "mountain" side, it's a nice view.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Luke D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

This is my third all-inclusive resort I have been to and highly recommend it if you are looking for a very relaxing, adults-only, smaller resort, with a beautiful beach, and top notch staff! From the minute you arrive the staff all make you feel so welcome, always have a smile, and go out of their way to make your vacation perfect! The resort is smaller so it is very easy to navigate and find your way around.
PROS:
*Wonderful staff! So attentive, friendly, and truly the BEST I have encountered in my travels! I honestly cannot say enough about what a fantastic staff they have at this resort!!
*AMAZING beach! You can walk and walk and see miles of amazing palm tree lined beaches and even visiting during a very busy spring break week (end of March and first week of April) time we could be alone in many areas were you can have your deserted beach feeling. The beach in front of the resort is quite wavy which we actually loved! If you are not a strong swimmer I would suggest sticking to the pools. If you walk down the beach a little to the right you can find a very calm area if you prefer that. Easy to find lounge chairs and also find places away from everyone else if you choose as well. Staff are often walking around taking drink orders and bringing them right to you which is a wonderful feature while lounging. If you stay in a room that includes the excellence club benefit and sit in the private beach area they also have staff frequently walking around offering sandwiches, pizza, and fruit kabobs as well as drinks. They also have a number of beach beds which offer a great place to escape from the hot sun and even a fun place to sit and read during a rare rain shower. They do have a few water sports but we never took advantage of this.
*Food - They have 8 restaurants as well as 24 hour room service! My husband is a big carnivore and loved "The Grill" for all of the choices of meat that were available. My favorite was Toscana for their Spinach Lasana and every morning they offer an omelette station. They offer seperate menus in each restaurants as well for vegetarians and low-fat options which is nice as well! The staff are very attentive, fast service, and we never had to wait at any retaurant and were always immediately seated. Room service is very easy with menus provided in each room and from the call to delivery it is about 30 minutes. My meal arrived fresh from the pizza oven along with a great plate of fresh fruit.
*Walking/Jogging trail through a garden- they have beautiful ponds with flowers, plants and trees with flamingos, ducks, a number of birds, fountains, and two parrots that are fun to interact with.
*The rooms - The first room we were in was beautiful but after two nights we asked to be moved because it was right next to the theater so it would often be noisy until around 11:15 or so with the shows and people walking around and talking. Our first room was in building 1 which is close to everything but like I said can be a little noisy if you retire to your room early. The second room was in building 3 and I highly recommend the room - 3208! The view was breathtaking! It is on the edge of the resort, quiet, and has a view of the palm trees, beach, and gardens. We had the Excellence Club Terrace Suite Ocean Front room and I loved the terrace which was a great place to just relax, sit in the Hydropool, a outdoor shower, and stare at the starry sky at night. :) Mini-bars are well stocked and it is replaced daily. Each day staff will leave oreos, crackers, and peanuts which is nice for a small snack between meals. The showers are fantastic with a rainshower and option of a handhead shower head for times when you don't want to get your whole head wet.
*The pools - the pools are huge and go on and on which is great exercise with all the eating and lounging you may do. They also have a cascade pool that is a little more hidden if you are looking for a place to get out of the wind or just to have a quieter place than the main pool.
*Activities - We only attended one show while we were there which was The Michael Jackson Tribute Show which was good but short. The staff put on an amazing beach front arabian type theme buffet which was beautiful, had great entertainment, and was a fun way to meet others at the resort.
*No bugs (except for 1 night) I was amazed at how few bugs I saw while there but on the last night they came out at the beach front buffet and the awesome staff brought out some Off spray for anyone who needed it and once I sprayed myself I was great the remainder of the time. That was the only time I saw any bugs the entire week and I spent hours in the evening on our terrace and never once got bit.

Cons:
*This is not a big deal but the pools close at 6PM and I think this is too early although if I had a room facing the pools then I would probably appreciate it. I just think this is too early for an Adult's Only resort but again not a big deal.
*Again not a big deal but at some of the restaurants the tables for two are a little too large so when you are sitting across from each other and trying to talk you feel like you are talking a little too loud but in thinking about it I don't really remember hearing others conversations.
*The ends of the beach on both ends you may have someone approach you to look at some souvenir items but they were friendly and will leave you alone after they approach you the first time. I do have to say the Souvenir's are much cheaper than the same ones offered at the resort.
*The beds are on the harder side but not too bad. Also the pillows were excellent for a resort!

The drive from the airport is about an hour but it is not bad at all. The roads are good, slow moving, curvy, and construction but not bad at all. It is interesting to see the that part of the country as well.

I would highly recommend this resort for couples looking to get away for a relaxing vacation in a very beautiful location! Excellent Staff!

Room Tip: Rooms in Building 3 are quieter. Room 3208 has a beautiful view of the ocean front and forest of Pa...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank ktakens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

My husband and I stayed at Excellence Punta Cana from 3/29-4/6. I will try to briefly touch on a few points which we found to be important.

The room: the beds were hard. I asked for a pillow top, which was immediately delivered. The next day, I asked for a second, which once again was promptly delivered. The beds were very comfortable after this. We were in building 14, which is far away from the restaurants, but we enjoyed the extra walking each day. We had the terrace suite which had a mini pool on our deck.

The food: we found the food to be good. We spoke with quite a few other guests who agreed with us. Remember, you are in Dominican Republic, so the food will be different from home.

The beach: we are beach people, and spent most of our time on the Excellence Club beach. I highly recommend that if you are bach lovers, you should pay the extra money for the Exellence Club. The chairs and beach service were much better than the regular beach. If you are pool people, it would make no difference whether or not you are in Excellence Club. There were people who would go out early to reserve their chairs, but by 9:00 when we went down to the beach, there were still alot of chairs left. The water was very rough, which I already knew by reading reviews. If you enjoy floating in calm waters, this is not the resort for you!

We have been to Couples and Sandals resorts and find this Excellence to be very comparable to both.

Overall, the service was outstanding, the food was good and the resort itself was clean and well maintained.

Room Tip: Building 14 was far from the restaurants but close to Excellence Club beach.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank gads221
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

First stay at Excellence Punta Cana and overall I was very pleased. We flew in and got private taxi service through the hotel. When we arrived we had a driver waiting with a sign with our name on it. We grabbed a couple of cold beers at the shack at the airport as we knew the drive was going to be long. The roads are not in horrible shape but during the 1 hour ride you are going to have to get used to the extremely aggressive driving you see in 3rd world countries.

When we arrived at Excellence you are greeted with champagne and we were taken to the front desk to check in. We did not pay for the Excellence Club but there was zero wait to check in and I don't remember ever seeing more than 2-3 people in line at the front desk. Our room was ready upon arrival and for the money you are paying the rooms are really nice. They have super nice showers and sinks. The beds are firm, but I prefer that to a soft bed. There is a sectional couch in the room and a fully stocked mini bar with name brand liquor, Presidente beer, and soft drinks.

If you are going, pay the extra money for an ocean view. The buildings are all 3 or 4 stories and the majority of the rooms in the hotel either overlook a pool or the grounds. Neither is all that appealing as a view in my opinion. I have attached some photos taken from my room in 2112. Eat your heart out.

We spent almost all of our stay on the beach. The pool was decent but it was narrow and more in the mold of a lazy river without the current. There is a second pool area on the backside of the resort that is wider and more spacious, but it was isolated from everything else and we never used that pool during our stay. The beach has plenty of places to set up and there are tiki type umbrellas that are set up all down the beach. We never had a problem getting a place to set up no matter the time of day, but if you want front row and a big umbrella you do have to show up before 8 and put a towel down to hold your spot. Yes it is juvenile to hold a spot on the beach if you are not using it until much later, but it is just the way of the world. Learn to accept it early and you will be a happier during your stay. Also the water is going to be rough. You are on the Atlantic side of the island and while the water is pretty it isn't going to be clear blue. We had a red flag for rough water every day we were there. I didn't go there to swim laps in ocean so I didn't really care, but there are people that will nitpick everything.

The food was hit and miss. We loved the breakfast buffet at Toscana, the Grill for lunch and the French restaurant was pretty high quality. The Lobster House sucked...I don't know any other way to put it. The other restaurants were just ok. My opinion is that if you are showing up to an all-inclusive resort looking for 5 star food you are always going to be disappointed. The meals for the most part are good but not great and if you don't like what you got, order something else. It is all-inclusive and they are there to please.

The thing that sets this place apart from anywhere else I have been is the service. They really do go out of their way to say hello and make sure you are happy. No matter where we were or what we wanted they did try to make sure we were satisfied. They also have a pretty clever way to ramp up the TripAdvisor ratings by asking if you were happy and only after you say yes do they give you a card with how to fill out these ratings. Pretty smart on their part and lucky for them I enjoyed it.

Last thing of note is that if you are in your mid-20's and looking to throw down this isn't the place for you. They cater to a crowd that is probably 30 and up and the vibe is much more relaxation than party. They have a casino, but it isn't owned by the resort and the dealers are the most mundane and depressed individuals I have ever come across. Part of a good casino is great service and good dealers. It fails in both aspects and this is coming from someone who actually won money.

Final verdict was this place was awesome. The only thing that kept it from getting a 5 was the food. I highly recommend to anyone who wants to get the feel of a high end resort for a reasonable price.

Room Tip: Get an Ocean View on 2nd or 3rd floor.
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank PDawk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

This review is overdue..but better late than never..I had to write.
We spent a week at the Excellence and read lots of mixed reviews prior to leaving...I seriously can not find a negative thing to say about this resort. The positive's are endless. The staff is friendly, their customer service incredible, food quite simply one of the best we have experienced.
If you want a specific room, just email them on their site...this is the first time someone responded within a day!!! And the willingness to try to accommodate is just outstanding. I have emailed resorts in past and have never had a response like this! So if a certain room is important, look on room tips and select your spot and email the request if they can accommodate you they will. Also you can upgrade once there and you can negotiate, but be reasonable.
Love the 8 restaurants you can choose from and not have to make a reservation, the steak at the three restaurants was amazing, our favorite was of course Chez Isabelle, but the Barcello and the Lobster were amazing too.... Oh..and the buffet is great for breakfast and lunch..but they also have a la carte breakfast and you can eat outside and watch the ocean...very peaceful and lazy breakfast days there...Please remember to tip, I am not sure why at this resort there was so little tipping...these people really do deserve and really do go the extra mile ;)
Beds were not that hard, again you are not at home and if this is what you need to complain about...then look for a place that has the bed you want b/c you are looking to spend your time in your room apparently ;) Oh and you can ask for a mattress topper to soften up your bed.
When anything is missing from your room, it is brought to you within minutes!!! and then they follow to ensure all is well!! Just one of many of the customer service touches!
Beach ... yes lots of waves, but there are calm times and yes it's North Atlantic..but the breeze while sitting at the beach is incredible and the sound of the waves....so relaxing to snooze, zone out and READ READ READ...heaven...and waiters on the beach if you don't feel like stretching....Please tip, and tip the man who will get you pads for your chairs..these guys walk the beach ALL day and very rarely were people tipping them...better yet, please bring them sunscreen..Rare there. Oh and they have boogie boards that are quite fun once you get the hang of it. We are in our 40's so it was something fun for us to try.
Tito is incredible. He is like the host of the entire resort and once he knows you he always greets you as he would one of his friends and never too pushy if you are not interested in the activities..his manager could take some pointers from him and really this guy should be the manager of entertainment (he is that good).
Love the different pools, if you want tranquil then find the Cascade pool, if you want to watch the crazy swim up folks (cocktail hour was fun --- for us 3 p.m. )...just stay for a couple or you are in trouble. :)...but the swim up is the swim up...so sit back and enjoy the show
Love the floats that you can get to stroll in the pools!
Love the horseback riding that you can book. Again..spare a bit and tip the guys, they do this day in and out.The bike tour is just ok, but a little activity is nice.
We did book with the guys on the beach/walking around in orange shirts .. two tours: Caterman (fun b/c of people we met)...no fish really to see..not a good snorkeling excursion and the dune buggy trip...this we liked...but some did not like and complained so much about being brought into the local towns, that the children were touching them at the cave and were disgusted about what they try to sell there to make a living. Really if you don't want to buy anything, then just give the ladies a few dollars. I brought tons of treats in a knapsack for the children..but wait until they do their sale speech to sell you stuff..and ask them if you can give the children something after this. They have a bag of suckers you can buy for $5 US..but I would prefer to bring treats from home and just give the lady the $$. These kids were fighting and go crazy for the little I had...wish my kids could see this! I liked this trip b/c you did see how people lived and the land etc. If this is not what you want..then book with hotel. That one you do have a much more detailed trip (coffee making/cigar making etc)...but still be prepared to be sold sold sold...it's how they make a living...
Love the shower in our room. Who cares if your partner/can see you..after all they have seen it all by then,have they not! Loosen up, you may surprise yourself! Plus once it's steams up you can not see anything.
You can also walk either way for miles without seeing anyone and just walk on a nice beach forever. It is secluded, but we wanted that over the hotels on top of hotels and a packed beach. Yes, people do put towels down to save spots, this happens at most places..if it matters then grab a towel and get to your spot earlier and do the same or take what you can get and enjoy.
Anyway..we met some fantastic people, loved the service, loved the rooms, restaurants, beach/pools and were there to relax and that we did.
A trip is what you make of it, but all the above had me sighing over and over in pure bliss ... ENJOY!

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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1  Thank krko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Excellence Punta Cana

Address: Playas Uvero Alto, 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 High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in Punta Cana
#9 Casino Hotel in Punta Cana
#12 Spa Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 Top resorts Hotel in Punta Cana
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Punta Cana
#14 Luxury Hotel in Punta Cana
#14 Family Hotel in Punta Cana
Price Range: $275 - $618 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Excellence Punta Cana 4.5*
Number of rooms: 464
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This quaint, colonial-style resort is the ideal destination for couples seeking secluded romantic getaways. Nestled among palms on a perfect white-sand beach on a remote stretch of Punta Cana's Caribbean shoreline, Excellence Punta Cana provides the perfect All-Inclusive playground for adults only and is also home to a world-class spa, state-of-the-art fitness center and an exceptional range of activities and services. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Secrets Excellence Punta Cana
Excellence Resort Punta Cana
Excellence Punta Cana Resort
Secrets Punta Cana
Excellence Punta Cana Dominican Republic
Excellence Dominican Republic
Punta Cana Excellence Hotel
Excellence Punta Cana Hotel
Secret Excellence Resort Punta Cana
Punta Cana Secrets Excellence

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