We just returned from a wonderfully relaxing vacation at the Bavaro Princess (May 19-26th). I have never done anything like this before and so was eagerly anticipating this trip (just graduated from graduate school and this was a present to ourselves). We travelled with great friends of ours and it was wonderful. We booked through Apple Vacations and I highly recommend this. Everything was taken care of and the Apple Rep. met us at the airport and got us to where we needed to go. The Apple Reps were very friendly and helpful.
Travel to Punta Cana: Our flight down was rather uneventful which was good. We found the Apple Rep (after paying $10 Tourist fee/person) and we loaded a bus to our resort. Once at the resort, we had already upgraded to Platinum (which I highly recommend) but were confused about where to go. There is a Platinum Lounge to check-in at, but we didn't know how to get there. My husband was determined to find it on his own. We finally got there and they greeted us with Presidente beer. My husband enjoyed this part.
We had to wait to check in to our rooms, so we hung out at the Platinum Lounge and booked all of our reservations for the ala carte restaurants at once. This was a great feature of the Platinum package (otherwise you would need to book in the main lobby each day). The rooms were very spacious. The rooms were a little outdated but very comfortable. We did see a roach twice but no other bugs. The maids kept the rooms very clean and left flowers several days (we tipped her daily and left her small gifts which I believe that they appreciate greatly). They speak no English so this was a good opportunity to use my little bit of Spanish. I greatly enjoyed this part. The water pressure was pretty poor but I took showers at peak times (before dinner) so this would explain this. I always had warm water as well. We really enjoyed the slippers and bathrobes that were part of the Platinum package. The frig was kept stocked our entire stay there which was nice. We enjoyed Rum and Sprite drinks (this is very good!). All in all, the rooms were fine and comfortable. It was like being in a small apartment - plenty of room.
The Hispaniola (the main buffet) was one of our favorite places to be. They had such a wide variety of foods and so all four of us were able to find something that we liked. We ate most breakfasts and lunches there. I was rather brave with my eating and tried a bit of everything. I don't know if this is what got me sick, but I did have bad diarrhea for one day. I believe that my body was just not used to the different foods. I usually have a tough stomach so it perplexed me (maybe a virus?) Just be careful with what you eat, all the fruit can be a natural laxative (Oh, and they fry their food in coconut oil which is also a laxative...so just be cautious). However, my husband ate the same things I did and did not get sick at all. It's so hard to tell. We ate at the Pescador (seafood) which was excellent. All four of us loved our meals. We also had the opportunity to eat at Licey as part of the Platinum package and it was good. The service was great and we had fun trying our Spanish. It is gourmet food and very interesting. We also tried Chopin and it was okay. I don't recommend this one (another buffet). The strolling musician (pianist on a boat) was a nice touch. As part of the Platinum package, we were able to go to the other Princess resorts and eat. We had our best dining experiences at Il Bacio (Italian) and La Petite Fondue (all fondue restaurant!) which are at the other Princess resorts. We did truly enjoy the Hispaniola which is located at the main lobby. It was comfortable and the staff were great. We also had the opportunity to use room service at any time as part of the Platinum Package (can you tell we loved the Platinum package??). It was just nice to order room service in the morning if we didn't feel like leaving our rooms early and the food was great.
Wow!!! I have never seen a more beautiful beach. The sand was like sugar under your feet and so clean. The water was aqua and the sky a royal blue. It was absolutely amazing. It is forever etched in my mind. We never had trouble finding a palapa and we didn't usually get to the beach until between 9-10 am. We didn't always get the best palapa, but that was okay with us. We spent a large amount of time in the water. The water was calm for most of the week, but one day, we had huge waves. I ended up losing my sunglasses from being knocked over by a wave. It was lots of fun though. Please be sure to bring lots of sunscreen as you will get burned. I wore SPF 30 every day and ended up with a sore back on one of the last days. The sun is intense. The topless sunbathers took a little bit of adjustment on our part as we are Americans and not used to seeing this. We also got to try sea kayaking which was lots of fun and it was free. The beach was my favorite part and it was just breathtaking. There is food on the beach if you don't want to go to the buffet. The food is so-so and the hamburgers there are different than we are used to...so we opted to go to the main buffet not a big deal.
We went on the Outback Safari excursion and I recommend this highly. We learned so much more about the Dominican Republic from our tour guide than we would have if we stayed on the resort the whole time. The country is beautiful with mountains and plantations. We took some extra balls that our son was not using at home and gave them to kids that were playing. This was a rewarding experience because these kids don't have much. The trip was amazing and our tour guide, Omar, made the trip memorable and worthwhile. We tried Mamajuana on the trip (yum!) and got to buy fresh cocoa and coffee. We also got to go snorkelling (Platinum package) which was awesome. The fish were amazing to see. We were only able to be out there for an hour...I could have done this for several hours. It was great nonetheless.
The resort is very spacious and it does take a while to walk, but who cares. We had no time pressures and so, it was wonderful to take a leisurely stroll through the mangrove and the beautiful resort. The animals were incredible, peacocks, parrots, iguanas, and many interesting birds. There are trams that go by all the time and so, if you want, you can jump on. We did this when we were tired and sunburnt. The grounds are well taken care of....they work so hard to keep it nice. There was beauty everywhere you looked...I never seen anything like this. I was truly impressed.
Overall, it was an amazing trip and the most relaxed I've been in a very long time. It is so amazing to go to a place where all of your needs are taken care of. The slower pace of the DR was awesome and greatly appreciated. There is not much nightlife here. We tried to go to the discotech one night and there were 6 people there. We were usually so tired by nighttime that we went to bed after watching the shows. They work hard to put on the shows and it was entertaining. As far as drinks go ,the Coco Loco drink was amazing as well as the Blue Hawaiian. It was great to be out on the beach with a drink in your hand. The bartenders were very nice and waited on us quickly most of the time. Sometimes , you need to ask for alcohol in the drinks..just to let you know. The staff are so friendly and helpful and always have a smile. If you try to communicate with them in Spanish, it means a lot to them. I could tell that the staff appreciated when I tried to speak Spanish. We did hear other Americans complaining about this or that. A vacation is what you make of it. It is all about perspective. If you are the type of person who looks to find something wrong, then you will find it. There were a couple things here and there that didn't go right, but such is life. I went on this trip to spend time with my husband and friends and it was such a great time for all of us. Overall, it was an amazing experience and I would definitely go back to this resort.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Bavaro Princess, situated in the Dominican Republic in an area renowned for its incomparable beauty, the quality of the sand and the clarity of the water on the famous Bavaro Beach. Accommodation at this prestigious resort more than meets the expectations of the most demanding of customers.136 splendid Platinum Suites, 16 Honeymoon Spa Suites, 82 functional Junior Suites, or the 572 spacious and fully equipped Bungalow Suites, provide the ideal added value to enjoy an unforgettable holiday. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Bavaro Princess Punta Cana
- Bavaro Princess Resort Punta Cana
- Bavaro Princess Hotel Punta Cana
- Hotel Bavaro Princess
- Punta Cana Bavaro Princess Hotel Resort
- Princess Bavaro
- Bavaro Princess Dominican Republic
- Bavaro Princess Hotel Dominican Republic
- Bavaro Princess All Suites Resort Spa & Casino
- Princess Hotel Punta Cana