My family, including 2 children age 10 and 17, travelled to Las Terrenas between Christmas and New Year and had a wonderful time. The staff at Balcones was very warm and helpful. They worked with us to arrange day trips, recommended a wonderful restaurant that was totally off the beaten path, as well as arranged services such as massages that made our stay very enjoyable.
The room was pristine, and perfect for a family--2 bedrooms, a sitting area balcony and kitchen. This meant we had a "home" on the beach to return to between activities. While costly, it was less expensive than booking 2 rooms in a traditional hotel, and the kitchen meant we could prepare our own breakfasts and snacks
We liked, but did not love, the restaurant; it was a bit expensive and the food not up to our picky New Yorker standards. But there are wonderful, inexpensive places in town that are easy to get to and right on the beach.
One thing we did with the children that I recommend was travel down with a suitcase full of art supplies for a local community organization called Fundacion Mahatma Ghandi. http://fundacionmahatmagandhi.com/FR_FMGAbout.html (If you want to do the same, reach out first to make sure of what they need at the time!)
Despite its natural beauty, and the growth of the tourist industry, Las Terrenas remains quite poor, with high illiteracy, unemployment and school drop out rates. Jose and Annette, who run FMG, have created a wonderful educational center/after school program that seeks to address these issues, and includes the only lending library in the north of the DR--housing 4500 books! We were very inspired by what they had created.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to Xeliter Balcones del Atlántico, the newest luxury resort in the Dominican Republic. Balcones features lavish one- two and three bedroom villa suites, Porto, a beachfront restaurant and bar, and a wide variety of Caribbean vacation activities including watersports, eco-tourism and more. Get the full luxury experience by staying at the Penthouse Villa where you will enjoy a rooftop deck offering incredible views, an impressive private plunge pool, and close to 4000 sq ft. of luxury space for 6 to 7 friends or family. Located on the Dominican Republic's Samaná Peninsula, Balcones del Atlántico is nestled in a lush tropical oasis on nearly a kilometer of Playa Las Terrenas. Discover some of the world's most pristine beaches, untouched landscapes and underwater splendors while enjoying world-class accommodations and amenities. Check out our current Caribbean vacation packages. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Balcones Del Atlantico, a Rock Hotel Las Terrenas
- Xeliter Balcones Del Atlantico Las Terrenas, Samana, Dominican Republic