Rated 5 out of 5 by andrea09 Wish we stayed longer!
My husband and I were looking for a unique place to go for our honeymoon, and we are so glad we picked the Westin in Punta Cana.
Upon arrival at the airport, make sure you've booked transportation to the hotel in advance. There's a bunch of guys offering to give you a ride for $30-50...a huge rip off considering the hotel is less than 3 miles away! If you call the hotel, they will arrange a personal taxi to pick you up, for a predetermined price.
When we arrived at the hotel, we were greeted by this gorgeous view from the open-air hotel lobby, looking out over an infinity pool to the beach. The staff welcomed us warmly and we were given fresh squeezed fruit juice - so delicious! SPG helped me book the honeymoon, and as a platinum member, they upgraded us to a junior suite for the week.
The staff is absolutely what sets this hotel apart, and we made several friends the week we stayed. Everyone is so friendly and while some members of the staff speak English, some do not. It's handy to prepare and learn some basic Spanish phrases if you don't speak Spanish.
The hotel is secluded, but there's a shuttle that runs about every hour to various points within the complex. In the village there's a pharmacy, grocery store, several restaurants and the Four Points. The shuttle also goes to the golf course, La Yola restaurant and makes a stop during the day at ojos indigenas. (More on that later!)
We hit the beach almost immediately, and when we returned to the room we had been gifted a welcome basket with fresh olives, cheeses, cured meat and bread sticks. It was a very nice touch from the hotel to congratulate us on our honeymoon.
The beach is beautiful, and the water was so clear you could see the bottom. We actually found a live conch one day! Make sure you bring snorkeling gear! The staff maintains the beach well, and it's right next to the kite surfing beach - so you can learn kite surfing one day if you're adventurous.
The restaurant Playa Blanca is within walking distance of the hotel (it's just beyond the kite surfing beach). Definitely recommend going there for dinner one evening! It's open air as well, and a similar menu to the hotel but a bit more romantic than the Brassa restaurant.
We used my platinum amenity for breakfast and elected to not use green choice. (I'm all for extra points, but I felt this was a better use for our stay!) The breakfast is the best continental breakfast I've seen at a Starwood property. There was an omelette station, fresh fruit, some traditional Dominican breakfast dishes and typical American/European options. The breakfast is $11 per person if you'd like to pay - a great value.
For activities, there is a representative from a local tour company offering day trips. We went on the Catalina Island excursion, and were a bit disappointed. The guide told us we'd be able to go snorkeling and fishing, which is what we really wanted to do, but the water was WAY too rough to see anything, plus the "reef" was just a huge underwater rock. Even though the tour didn't meet our expectations, we were happy to see the scenery of the island and we did note it was WAY better than being in Chiberia!
Ojos indigenas is within the resort complex, and is free for guests at the Westin. The shuttle will drop you off, and you'll need to go to the building located in the fruit garden to get a green wristband. I wouldn't recommend getting a guide - the walk is a very easy walk and we actually walked in flip flops. Ojos indigenas contains a series of lagoons, connected by an underwater river. The water is this amazing shade of blue and the water is so clear you can see fish and turtles swimming right next to you! There are three lagoons you can actually swim in. When you reach the end of the trail, you're left beach side on the other side of the forest. You'll need to hike back to the original entrance to pick up the shuttle. Bring a couple extra bucks to get a drink (Presidente!) to cool off after your walk. Pack a snack too, as you can spend a couple of hours walking throughout the forest.
I read the previous comments about how the hotel treated platinum members. We experienced extreme professionalism from the staff, and the upgrade to the suite was *VERY MUCH* appreciated!
All in all, we had a wonderful time at the Westin and plan to return for subsequent anniversary trips!
February 20, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Kalli16 Beautiful Hotel with a Great Staff
This is a great new property. Everything was extremely clean and staff was very friendly, especially Sergio at Brassa (beach side restaurant), he was exceptional!
Hotel very conveniently located just 2 miles from the Punta Cana Airport. We took a taxi to the hotel for $20, which was the same price as the shuttle.
Plenty of room at the large pool and at the beautiful beach. No racing to reserve a spot at the crack of dawn, good spots were still available after we finished breakfast. Best part of the beach was the privacy – no one bugging you to buy a necklace or braid your hair.
Rooms were clean and beds were heavenly. Sat on balcony and enjoyed view of the ocean. Maid service was prompt – had to make up hideaway bed for my son. They were at the room within 5 minutes with sheets and pillows.
The free shuttle service to Punta Cana village, La Cana Golf Club and the Ecological Reserve (go swimming in the crystal clear lagoons) was an additional plus. It enabled you to get off the properly without needing a car and there were plenty of shuttles so you didn’t feel stranded.
Already starting to plan our trip back.
February 26, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Mamajuana Caribbean bliss with customer service excellence
Recent February 2014 stay was a destination getaway from life's realities. Management has clearly taken into account previous guest feedback as each employee on site was dedicated to insuring a high level of customer service. Platinum amenities recognized and personalized service provided. Be sure top off the day at the amazing on site Cigar Bar and get a Mamajuana at Brassa when headed to the beach! Enjoy this piece of paradise that will only get better with age!
March 8, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by kmsbr720 Very nice hotel
I travel a lot (platinum) and I have to say, this was a very nice new hotel as the staff did everything they could to make my family's stay as pleasant as possible. My recommendations are: 1. Playa restaurant is over rated. 2. The restaurants in the village are average but good for a family. 3. The hotel needs better access to and from airport. 4. They put up shower curtains in the bathroom to provide some privacy since they first opened. 5. The golf course was beautiful. 6. Go see the natural springs, the water is amazing! 7. Don't try the local diving, go elsewhere. 8. Drinks are always good but slow to get to the pool. 9. Great shuttles to local areas of interest. 10. Would recommend this property as it is away from all the hustle of the Club Meds and all-inclusive drinking hotels...
March 12, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by MikeRennie Best Vacation Yet
I spend about 50-75 nights a year in hotels for work so I want to relax when on vacation. This is the perfect place for it. the beach and pool are fantastic and the staff are the friendliest I have ever encountered and was genuinely interested in making our stay as pleasant as possible.
the food is good, the drinks are excellent and nearby play blanca is only a short walk on the beach and the food is so good, my wife and I ate there several times.
My wife and I will definitely return since this property is our new favorite. our stay here was more enjoyable than our than our stays at the Westin in Maui or Cancun (but they were also enjoyable).
February 6, 2014
Rated 1 out of 5 by Hpf30 Not ready for prime time
Experienced platinum member but this has got to be one of the most disappointing stays.
Let's start at the beginning with the airport pick up arranged and re confirmed day prior
No sign, no person nada, no apology
On to check in. 30 minutes with NO line just inexperienced front desk clerk
No rooms with the bed type requested even though hotel empty
Now on to the rooms. It is like the designer never worked on a hotel before. Bathrooms have no door. No privacy. Can't use the bathroom to shower and to... At the same time
Three draws the size of a nightstand and 5 hangers. Can't unpack clothes for one nonetheless two people!
Service is slow. It is the Caribbean. Expect it
But today no hot water. No maid service at 330pm
What is good. Warm, caring wait staff.
I would wait until this hotel gets its kinks out before choosing this hotel. The lack of a door, place to unpack... I guess just be prepared to live out of your suitcase.
And to fellow platinum members be prepared for NO recognition
December 28, 2013
Rated 4 out of 5 by Caree getting there but needs a bit more time
We checked in on Dec 20. Check in and check out is SLOW and there random charges on your bill so I suggest checking your room bill every day.
The hotel is beautiful,clean and open. Small resort and intimate. Rooms were very nice and after 3 changes of keys,our keys finally worked. The staff is very lovely. Many very sweet and helpful employees.Now..the kitchen, I do not know what goes on there. It may take a while to get food and sometimes not the right order. This needs to be improved upon quickly. The beach and water is beautiful. We ate at 3 of their sister restaurants and loved all 3. Many of our family members went on several excursions and although there were a few bumps, they enjoyed the choices. We are already returning in February and are looking forward to a smoother hotel and seeing our fav employees and staff again.
January 6, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by PG82 What an awesome stay
Cesar, Yarik and the entire team made our stay tremendous... the rooms, staff, views and amenities are great... pool and beach is gorgeous and we would HIGHLY recommend folks to come visit and wish the hotel nothing but further success!
February 19, 2014