First and foremost... thank you to all of those people who posted negative comments about Secrets. Why? Because it lowered our expectations just a little bit, and made us even more overwhelmed with how awesome this place is. We had the best honeymoon we could've ever hoped for! I'll run through some of the hot topics I've read on this board:
RIDE TO THE RESORT
Yes, it's long. Yes, it's bumpy. But it wasn't nearly as bad as some people made it sound. Actually the roads are in pretty good condition throughout most of the drive. But because you're in a bus and the driver is going very fast of course it's going to be bumpy. Just sit back and talk to the people on your bus and it'll be over before long.
Absolutely beautiful... as expected.
We were initially booked in a 2nd floor room even though I had our travel agent request a 3rd floor room for us (cathedral ceilings, better view). When we checked in I asked if we could be switched to 3rd floor, and I pulled out a $5 bill. He immediately switched us to a 3rd floor room in the same building - Building 5 - overlooking the Cascade Pool. If you're looking for a quiet room I'd recommend Buildings 1-5 since they're on the quieter side of the resort.
My wife and I were stunned by the food! Everything was delicious!! We didn't have one bad meal, and never got sick. We had dinner one night at Texas (steakhouse), and Bella Italia (Italian) and had two dinners at Quisqueya (French) and Mediterranean (seafood). We had lunch once at Mediterranean (same as dinner menu), once at Texas, and a few times at Higuey (buffet). We had breakfast every morning at Higuey too. The service was excellent and there was never a wait. Compared to some of the other resorts we were considerring where you're stuck with a buffet dinner at most or all restaurants this is definitely much nicer.
Yeah, a couple of them are corny - especially the Legends Concert where they lip sync, but each show was still fun. The performers give it 100% and do a good job trying. Don't miss the "Ideal Couple" show. That was absolutely HILARIOUS! Get there early, the staff usually did games or dancing before the main show.
The staff can't do enough for you. And they are always in such a great mood. Everybody asks how you're doing, and they respond that they're excellente. By mid-week, when we started responding that we were excellente they enjoyed hearing that.
I highly, highly recommend the photo session. We bought all 40 5x7's and the CD with all the pictures for $120 and it was worth every penny. The pictures were awesome, and we had a fun time doing it too.
Yes, it's all-inclusive but if you can afford to go there you can afford to tip a little more too. The staff will bend over backwards for you. No matter what you'll ask them, they'll respond that "It's a pleasure". We also read on here that they really like American chocolate since it's so different than theirs. So we took a bag of Hershey Kisses. I put a handful out for the maid and mini-bar attendent everyday. The day we left I gave the leftover kisses to Patricia and she literally jumped for joy.
- I didn't have any problem with the bugs, but when my wife was wearing a skirt at night her legs got bit up a little bit. If you have some skin exposed you may want to use bug spray or take one of those nasty smelling vitamins.
- You can spend $3.00 per minute to call home or use the internet cafe at $5.00 per 20 minutes. I'd suggest you tell friends and family that you'll e-mail them once or twice rather than call.
- Nobody seems to do well at the casino. Go ahead and play a while if you want, but don't count on winning.
- Even if your sunscreen says it's waterproof or 8-hour protection, be sure to put more on several times during the day. I learned this after I baked pretty good on day 1.
I'm sure there are plenty other points I meant to make and I overlooked. Bottom line - take all the reviews here (positive or negative) with a grain of salt. Some people are impossible to please, some people are easy to please. Just go to Secrets, relax, and have a good time.
I took a TON of pictures, so if you'd like to see them or have any questions, feel free to drop me an e-mail.
- 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