Just returned from another great vacation in Sosua. Once again I stayed at the Casa Marina. Although the casa does have its problems, it also has its charms. Before I get into this just let me say that even with some of the negative points, I would stay here again and I would recommend the resort to anyone.
My trip started off very well, I travelled from Halifax to Sosua via Toronto. I flew West jet and again they had great service and were on time both going and returning. Check in is now only on the reef side of the hotel, ( this is the check in across from the ball field) Although I request a ground floor overlooking the pool on the reef side, I was giving a top floor room over looking the pool. Not what I wanted, but nothing too serious. As always I asked for a safe, I have never been charge in the past for a safe however they were adamant about charging me for the safe. So, you should definitely get a safe ( read on ) however you will be charged for it. It is $15 US per week. A note here, the day I checked in, Oct. 15'th, about 6 rooms were robbed, all the room were ground floor and none of the guests got a safe....inside job?????.....seems a little fishy.....GET THE SAFE. After I got to my room Ireturned to the desk to talk to the manager,Elizar< who I know from previous visits, I asked him about the safe and he said everyone has to pay...oh well, I was not happy but life goeson. A short while later I returned to my room to find a Large fruit basket and a bottle of rum as a Thank-you for being a repeat client. In my mind this negated the charge of the safe. I went for supper at the buffet restaurant , on the reef side, the beach side is closed. ( Read in the Sosua forum my update on the renos regarding the beach side). I was greated by Yovanni, who remembered me from previous visits. If you do not tip him he is a great waiter, if you do tip him you could not be treated any better. Every day he would have the table I like ready for me, he would have my tea prepared the way I like it, he would go out of his way to ensure I was looked after. He is without a doubt the best waiter I have ever encountered. This goes a long way towards making the holiday enjoyable.
When I was on the resort I only ate at the buffet, I did not eat at the ala cartes as it was too hot to wear long pants. I was there 14 days and I only had one cloudy and rainy day, the rest of the time it was between 30-34 degrees and sunny. The food at the buffet was what you would expect, however they have a different theme every night so it helps change things up. The dishes are somewhat the same but they do change, I could always find something good to eat. There is always a fresh bread station, soup, salads, deserts, meat dishes and vegetables.... I eat better at the Casa then I do at home. The ala cartes are all open but they are all operating out of the same spot...the Italion Restaurant. The food at the resort is one of the reasons I continue to come here.
The alcohol on the resort is terrible, the beer is okay but the rums are terrible.
The rooms are okay, nothing fancy, but they have nice beds, TV, dresser, desk, closet with hangers and a safe. The rooms are a little worn but are kept very clean by the maid service. The shower was very good with no shortage of hot water.
The resort itself is beautiful, it is continously being cleaned and groomed. The staff are hit and miss, although I find people treat you like you treat them.
The best part of staying at the Casa is going out and enjoyimg the wonderful little town of Sosua. I have meet many people who I know call friends in Sosua. Do not let people tell you it is not safe, it is probably safer then going out in your own hometown. There are some really nice places to see and things to do here. The night life can be a little daunting, as prostituition is legal and just about every local male/female becomes a prostitute at night. A little flattering at first but very quickly becomes tiresome. There are some good local watering holes owned by Expats that you will be able to enjoy a drink without being harassed by the locals. My favorite is a bar called the Hideaway, owned by Tim & Tomasin and there son Pete., all originally from Georgia. Ask Pete to make you a burger and potato salad and you will think you are back at home. They have a great waitress Flor.... I call her Tequilla Flor. She is always happy when someone buys her a shot. There is always a good sports game on the TV or bigscreen here and the conversation and company is very good. There is also a great bar on the beach called the British Bulldog, owned by Charlie & Vanessa. Good drinks and good food, they are also kind enough to watch your stuff if you want to go for a swim on the local beach. They are somewhere around hut # 38 on the beach. I was in Cabarete a couple of nights for supper, once to the LAX, great restaurant on the beach, good food, atmosphere and prices. Another night to the Chino restaurant, typical chienese restaurant except the foof is fantastic.
There are alot of great places in town to find deals, the Super-super is the local discount booze and tobacco shop. Lots of good deals at all the huts on Sosua beach, however not for the faint of heart, as the vendors do become over-whelming.
For those of you who are snorkellers or Scuba people, get off the resort and meet the local experts and get fantastic packages at a fraction of the price they charge you on the resort. I found a wonderful little shop just up the street from the Casa Marina, it is called Scuba Elite. This is a wonderful shop run by Carrie Gunn, a lovely English woman and managed by a lovely Canadian woman, Brenda. Carrie is a dive master and will take you to Sosuas'' best dive and sbnorkel sites, while Brenda will try to work around your schedule to ensure you have an amazing trip. I consider both of these women my friends and would be honored if the considered me theirs.
All and all, for me Casa Marina and Sosua have everything I need and want in a holiday. No not everything is perfect, but nothing in my world is either.
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- Also Known As:
- Casa Marina Beach & Reef Resort
- Casa Marina Reef Dominican Republic
- Casa Marina Reef Sosua