We just got back from an anniversary trip to the DR- our first. We did a ton of research before picking a resort. We have two kids and since our kids were not coming along we thought it would be nice to go to an adult only resort to remove any chance of my "mother hen" instincts even needing to kick in. A lot of resorts have adult only sections, but the whole place is not adult only. That is one of the reasons we decided on Excellence. Of course the high ratings was another. They did NOT disappoint. We would go back in a heartbeat if the opportunity arises again.
When we first arrived at the airport (after going through immigration, etc), one of the bellhop people grabbed our bags and asked us which company we were with. Ours was Olympus. He took us right to the company desk and we were taken to a bus. The ride to Excellence is a long one. It took about 1.5 hours. Part of this is that it is further away than other resorts and there is also a lot of road construction going on. There is a new road being built out to the resorts and a road being built to Santo Domingo. Upon arrival at the resort, we were greeted with champagne and a cool towel, sent to the front desk to check in and told our bags would be sent to our room. The rooms are really very nice. We LOVED the rain shower (but you can also switch it to a normal shower). The whirlpool tub was perfect. When we tried ours the second night, the cold didn't work and the hot and cold handles were switched. We called the front desk and a maintenance person was there in less than 5 minutes- fixed our tub and away he went with our tub working perfectly.
The grounds are gorgeous. We enjoyed many a relaxing evening walk. The beach is technically public property, so you do get approached by non staff occasionally, but it is not very much and they are not rude. The pools and beach were clean and well maintained. We never had any problem getting towels or two chairs next to each other. Floaties are a little harder to come by.
The staff is so friendly and helpful. For a lot of them, their english is limited so you may have to work a little to get them to understand, but not the main people with whom you need to interact. The only staff person we found less than friendly is the grill woman at Las Olas(the restaurant on the beach) and bartender at the Cielos bar- but as I told my husband- he spends his entire day pretty much by himself. There is way less staff to staff interaction in that more secluded area by the Cascade pool. In general you can't walk down the hallways without a number of "Holas."
We loved the evening shows. The acrobat show was really amazing and we loved the Excellence band. We didn't really participate in any of the on site daytime activities. We were only there for 4 full days and two of them we did excursions (the reef explorer excursion and the dune buggy excursion). The other two we relaxed, swam in both pools and beach, read, hung out, drank.
The food- We did not go there for 5* restaurant food. We did get that at Chez Izabelle for sure. I would say 4* at Barcelona. Breakfast at Toscana is mostly buffet. The buffet food was never super hot, but pretty yummy. They have omelet and eggs to order stations, meat and cheese, fruit, cereals. No way can you walk away unsatisfied.
Overall- we had an amazing time and would do it over again and again. That said- I hope to take my kids to one of the other resorts some time.
- 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