Punta Cana // Carrousel Travel Fam September 2018

Dreams Punta Cana

Upon entering Dreams Punta Cana, we were greeted with a cold towel, champagne and a warm welcome! Hotel had open air lobby and 620 rooms and suites.

Pool meanders through property with lots of landscaping to give it a nice and relaxed feeling.

Honeymoon suite was a 1 bedroom with a nice tub on large balcony.

Family rooms are a double and king connecting rooms with a max occupancy of 6.

Preferred club offers separate check in, close to beach with their own lounge, beach cabanas, and restaurant.

Beach was beautiful with palm trees, sugar white sand and ocean breezes. We saw very little seaweed.

Core zone offered rock climbing wall, batting cage, bike tours and more for teenagers.

Explores club for 3 years and up had a fun pirate slide and many activities-just check your little one in and they give you a pager.

Spa was very nice and had a Zen feel. They offered many options for adults, teens and children.

A very nice property with lots of open-air dining and areas and something for everyone, even a casino! Nice relaxing feel!



Secrets Cap Cana

Cap Cana Secrets was built in 2016 and has 458 rooms. They offer Jr suite, bungalow and master suites with 19 room categories. All categories depict view and location. All of the 1st floor rooms are swim out. New for Secrets at this property is everyone gets an iPad, Nespresso machine, and steamer for clothes in each room.

There are only 21 Bungalows and they are closest to beach and sell out first. Master suite has huge plunge pool on balcony. Beach is as big as I have seen with palapa’s that have lots of space between for privacy. It is a hard-packed sugar sand and truly a wow.

Preferred club has butler service here which lends itself to a truly upscale experience.

The foliage is small as in any new property but with its contemporary colors and style it is a beautiful option and I would love to stay here!



Majestic Mirage

I was able to tour the Majestic mirage on 11 Sept, 2018. All rooms have butler service and they are either in Family section or Adult only section. Rooms are spacious and well done with even a swim out that had a large Bali bed and tub on patio.

There also is a family suite that will sleep 6.

Dining options look great and they have several al a cart restaurant’s that no reservations are required.

This is the newest of the 3 Majestic properties that sit side by side and it shows in the size of the fitness facility which was amazing.

Although this property was very nice I liked the Majestic Elegance better based on architectural style and proximity to night club, casino and Caribbean Street that offers shops.

My host property was Majestic Colonial and this is a well-run property with very good service. The lush landscaping added to the charm of this place. Only concern here is -bathrooms offer little privacy if you are not traveling with your partner. The preferred club is the way to go here and you have access to a nice lazy river pool and special bar/lounge. Very nice!

The beach at all 3 is nice and offers you palapa’s to sit under and a breath-taking view! Majestic is a good brand and offers a very good product based on price.



RIU Macao Palace

This is favorite of the RIU resorts.
adults only
Targets 40-70 age
Quiet and peaceful, with a Zen feel.
Double water lounge beds in pool.
Powder white sand. Lots of palm trees shading the beach.
5 restaurants
Exchange all RIU except Punta Cana Palace.
Elegant buffet restaurant, white table clothes with walnut accents.
Easy walk to Splash park with water slides.

Jr suite or suite. Room view determines by category.
2wing back chairs
White and pink
Splash pool included in all
Garden view could be facing the driveway or the pool with ocean in background.
Casino Dynamite on location.



RIU Palace Punta Cana

The RIU Palace Punta Cana was our host hotel for 3 nights. The hotel just completed a renovation in July 2018. Everything looked very nice from the lobby to the rooms and restaurants. The rooms were large and featured a large king size bed or 2 double beds with step down area to the couch and balcony. When we arrived, our rooms were decorated with balloons and a nice room gift.

The RIU Palace offers exchange privileges with the RIU Bamboo and Nabo hotels.

This is a family hotel with 5 ala carte restaurants, no reservations required. They offer buffet appetizers with 3-5 choices for a main course. House wines are served; however, they have alternatives if you ask. We ate at the Spanish restaurant which had excellent Seafood Paella at the buffet. We also tried the Steak house which is located overlooking the beach. They served excellent lobster.

The service at the RIU was amazing, the staff were always very helpful and cheerful throughout the resort.

The hotel features 3 pools all overlooking the ocean, including a swim up bar featuring the famous Mamajuana drink (Mama Juana is a drink from the Dominican Republic that is concocted by allowing rum, red wine, and honey to soak in a bottle with tree bark and herbs. The taste is similar to port wine and the color is a deep red.)

While we were there they had a Foam party in the pool, the music was playing and people were having a good time.

The beautiful sandy beach is walkable. There was some seaweed, however they were out cleaning it up every morning.

They have a sports bar which is open 24/7 with bar snacks, hot dogs, nachos and chicken fingers.

The hotel has an Amstar rep which will be able to help your clients with any day tours. They offered a free tour to a small shopping area with cigars, chocolate and coconut items.



Now Onyx

Now Onyx has 502 rooms with 4 a la carte restaurants no reservations required and 10 bars. 24-hour room service. The hotel is only 2 years hold.

They offer an Explorers club for children where they staff are Red Cross certified. The have a kid’s salon for manicures. For teenagers they offer Core Zone Teen’s dance club.

Guests have exchange privileges at Breathless Punta Cana. The restaurants all had themed decorations and were beautifully decorated.

Long distance calls to US land lines are included, mini bar with premium alcohol in the rooms.

They have waiter service on the beach. Salt water pool for the kids.

40 % of their rooms are preferred rooms. Preferred Club guests have their own pool bar, and indoor area for pre-dinner drinks and a sports bar. They have preferred areas where clients are sitting out on an “Island” in the pool.

They have a plaza with shops and ice cream parlor and coco café which offers coffee and snacks which are all included. They have meeting space which fits up to 250 people.



RIU Republica

Republica is an active, adults only property. It is the newest of the RIU properties in Punta Cana: built in 2016 and updated in Nov. of 2017. The renovation included a more updated, classic line to its rooms. One thing I liked was the bathroom configuration: the shower/bath was separate from the toilet area. Republica is very spread out making it feel like a very huge property. It has 1382 rooms, 5 pools, Splash Water World with 4 water slides, fitness areas, and more. The beach is on the west end of Bavaro with numerous palapas lining the beach. There are 8 categories of rooms and 8 restaurants in addition to a jerk grill on the beach. The restaurants are unlimited and do not require reservations.

Personally, this property was my least favorite of the 5 RIU’s we visited in Punta Cana. It is tailored for the younger crowd, especially the 20 somethings. I would most recommend it to that age group, whether it be singles or couples. Republica has four parties for the younger crowd each week.



Breathless Punta Cana Resort & Spa

Breathless is an adults only property in the Uvero Alto region of Punta Cana. Their motto which is displayed throughout the resort: “Live Big. Breathe Deep”. When you arrive at this resort and enter the lobby, you will see and hear a DJ playing music in the main lobby area. The target audience for this property is 25-45-year olds. Breathless was built in Nov. of 2013. It consists of 750 ultra-contemporary suites with hot tubs, either a king or 2 double beds, large balcony or terrace, and complimentary wireless (many room extras included). The Xhale Club suites includes extras like private restaurant, pool concierge and bar service, and two private pools. The overall property has 9 pools (1 pool is for the quieter crowd), 8 ala carte restaurants with no reservations required, and DJ’s on Friday-Sunday (they bring in some famous ones) in addition to lively entertainment offered daily (clients are invited to participate in shows!). NOTE: Encourage clients to set up the Breathless APP tool PRIOR to arrival.

As our Amstar guide said as we approached this property, “Welcome to the party!” Personally, I was slightly overwhelmed when I first arrived at Breathless. However, as I continued my site inspection, the property started to “grow on me”. I liked the disco area (a surprise to me!) with the large open-air terrace adjacent to it. The resort felt like it delivered up-scale service. Breathless has a beautiful, continental feel to it with a nice ambiance.


RIU Bambu

By the numbers —
2017: renovated
1000 rooms: arranged in family-oriented villas
5 pools: 3 with swim up bar
6 restaurants: Gourmet, Spanish, Steakhouse, Asian, Italian, poolside
1 International buffet

A bright, open air lobby greets guests at check in. This modernized RIU property is a classic property. No frills. Wi-Fi is available throughout the property. However, it is limited to 4 devices per room. Waiters are MIA at the pool and beach. Room service is not an option. Lunch and snacks can be enjoyed at sister property RIU Naiboa. Guests are welcome to use the Renova Spa at RIU Palace Bavaro. Shows are presented in the outdoor show lounge nightly. A well-equipped gym is on site.

RIU Bambu is an excellent option for families. The brightly colored rooms are arranged in villas. All rooms are considered “garden view”. However, the ocean and/or the pools may be viewed in the distance from some rooms. Connecting rooms are available and can accommodate 8 guests; no more than 6 adults in 2 connecting rooms. The little tykes, age 12 and under can have fun at the RiuLand kids club. Teenagers between the ages of 13 and 17 will enjoy the RIU4U programs. Splash Water World is included for all! Rooms have the usual amenities: liquor dispenser, mini-bar, A/C, safe, flat screen TV, sofa in sitting area and a balcony or terrace to enjoy your garden view room.

I would definitely consider the Classic RIU Bambu for a family. It’s got the basics for an enjoyable vacation: pools, an array of dining options, entertainment, and is on a beautiful white sand beach.



Sanctuary Cap Cana

Sanctuary lies within the planned Cap Cana community. It is part of the Playa Hotels & Resorts brand. Upon entering Sanctuary, you are transported back in time: to a Spanish Colonial setting of villas and castles. Guests can revel in unexpectedly luxuries, authentic dining venues, and a world class spa all within a stunning oceanfront setting.

Sanctuary has just finished a $35M modernization. Al l main areas were renovated along with adding an additional 100 suites, bringing the total number of suites to 325. All suites feather rich wood accents, tropical rattan furniture and soft coral bathrooms. Grand opening is planned for December 2018. Sanctuary has 5 pools, including 1 infinity pool and 1 a salt water pool to compliment the beautiful sugar-white sand beach the property lies on. Guests can choose from junior suites with ocean view to swim up (private pool or ocean), to 2 level castle rooms. There’s an accommodation to suit every type of guest.

Sanctuary has 5 restaurants on their property: Wok, The Steakhouse, Blue Marlin, Casabella (Int’l buffet) and Capriccio and 3 bars. Sanctuary Town is located across from the hotel and features 9 more great places to eat, 2 themed bars and a food truck. A state-of-the-art fitness center with a variety of classes and 20,000 sq. ft. luxury spa are located on site. Guests will also find high quality entertainment and activities both day and night. Jack Nicholas’ Punta Espada Golf Club, boating, fishing and galleria shopping are within close proximity.

I loved Sanctuary Cap Cana. It is perfect for couples, no matter what they are celebrating. I would feel comfortable recommending this property to anyone. And I would feel like a transformed person after spending my holiday at Sanctuary Cap Cana.



NOW Larimar

The NOW Larimar Punta Cana is an excellent family friendly option and in addition, Now Larimar provides wedding package options with professional coordinators to handle the wedding details. There is a 50% discount for Spa packages for Honeymoon couples, a wedding license document is required to receive the Spa discount and Honeymoon breakfast. The preferred club guests are offered rooms closer to the beach and a preferred club restaurant is on the beach for the preferred club guest with the Beach Side Grill available for all guests. Rooms are the same, the categories of rooms are determined by the view. Effective December 23rd. the Now Garden and the Now Larimar will be under the one brand of NOW Larimar.

With 548 rooms, multiple restaurant options, 4 pools, casino, sports bar, and bowling alley, there are plenty of activities to keep the entire family entertained throughout their holiday. In addition, there is a KIDS Club with baby-sitting services available for $15 per hour. For the teens, a TEEN Club is available with a diversity of games. Note, there is an up-charge for the sport bar games and activities.

The Secrets Royal Beach guests have exchange privileges with the NOW Larimar resort which is located adjacent to the NOW Larimar property. This resort offers movies on beach, horseback riding excursions, theme parties along with the standard activities. Maximum is three adults to a room. The beaches are cleaned 24 hours a day to keep the seaweed at a minimum; there was very little seaweed on the beaches.



RIU Palace Bavaro

RUI Palace Bavaro is a sister to properties in the RUI complex located in Punta Cana. This resort includes diverse amenities and offers exchange privileges with three sister properties excluding RUI Palace Macaro. The RUI Palace Bavaro was renovated in 2014 and has bright Caribbean colors in their décor.

RIU Palace Bavaro has 610 Rooms, all are junior suites, but also includes an adult only Villa Suite where guests need to be at least 18. There are also Junior Suite connecting Garden rooms available as an option. All bedding is King or Doubles. The bathrooms are the open concept which is good to know for families.

Some amenities include Splash Water park, Adult only themed pool parties, entrance to the RUI Palace Macao Casino Access to all bars within the RUI resort complex (excluding the RUI Palace Macaro, but includes access to Pacha night club, drinks not included. This resort is more suited for adults and teen-age children.



Majestic Colonial Punta Cana

This 5* colonial-style resort is located in a setting of glorious beaches and exotic tropical gardens. It’s the perfect destination for couples, families and groups with a desire for water sports, relaxation, exquisite cuisine, shopping and exciting entertainment.

The property will delight those young and old with pools, a lazy river, 9 restaurants, a multitude of bars and a supervised kids club with water slides. A Caribbean Street lies between Majestic Colonial and its sister property, Majestic Elegance. The street features boutiques, a pharmacy, photo, cigar and souvenir shops, a sports bar and casino.

Majestic Colonial has 658 suites. The adults only Colonial Club consists of 318 of these suites. The remaining 340 suites are available to adults with children under the age of 18.

Handicapped rooms for 2 adults are available in the Colonial Club junior suites with Jacuzzi category. Some suites can accommodate 4 guests and connecting rooms are available upon request.

The adults only Colonial Club features:

  • 2 private pools and private beach area
  • Private check-in in VIP lounge; concierge and butler services
  • Private bars with hors d’oeuvres and drinks
  • Exclusive use of Le Gourmet restaurant for breakfast and lunch
  • 2 free greens fees per adult at Punta Bianca Golf Club per 5 day stay

The Majestic properties, Elegance, Colonial and Mystic do NOT have exchange privileges. The only feature they share is the Caribbean Street. This is very important to remember. Majestic Colonial is an excellent property for a destination wedding. I have booked the property for a wedding and the wedding coordinator was very accessible and helpful. It has a nice mix of family suites and adult only suites with activities for all! Sell Majestic Colonial with confidence!!!