Woo Hoo, Our First All-Inclusive!

Oct 6, 2006     Dominican Republic     My Adventures
The shallow winding pool is fantastic. Just walk from pool bar to pool bar.
The shallow winding pool is fantastic. Just walk from pool bar to pool bar.
We decided to try our hand at an all-inclusive in the Domincan Republic. Take it for what it is, and it's a blast. << old website quick post >>
Old posts from my very first travel website!

A few days in Breckenridge, a few in NY, and Aimone wedding (!), then first class seats on both flights to get to DR. But we were so tired we slept the whole way. Then we took a bus from the airport (unheard of at that touristy airport!) to Cortecito where we thoroughly enjoyed the pool, a cold beer, and some local nightlife at the corner open-air bar.

Now our first all-inclusive resort. Wow, when we first arrived we couldn’t believe how beautiful it was. We got a welcome drink brought to us while we were checking in, and had a nice stroll around the grounds (and more welcome drinks) while we waited for our room to be ready. The room is fantastic. We have a balcony with a view of the ocean and the pool, air con, champagne, stocked mini-bar, etc.

The pool is the best. It is a shallow, long, winding thing that spans the entire hotel. The 4” shelf has become a favorite spot for us. The only problem is that since two of the bars are closed, it’s impossible to walk the length of the pool and get to the next bar before your drink runs out!
Tired of walking between pool bars? Have a seat on the shelf.
Tired of walking between pool bars? Have a seat on the shelf.
Love the pool. :)
Love the pool. :)
The beach has been great, too. We sit in lounge chairs under a thatched umbrella. We rented (for free) a windsurfer, which was a total joke. The good thing was that we met a nice couple from Mexico City when they tried helping us hold the board in the waves. We’ve gotten to practice our Spanish a lot already. We speak mostly Spanish, but it’s nice when we meet the occasional person who speaks English. Much less of an effort to have a conversation. We have also been snorkeling which was pretty good right on shore.
The beach is nice, too!
The beach is nice, too!
Pool aerobics, beach aerobics, poolside dancing; there's always something going on.
Pool aerobics, beach aerobics, poolside dancing; there's always something going on.
Okay, look past the cute girl and check out what's behind (or to the sides of) the pole. Classic accidental shot! LOL
Okay, look past the cute girl and check out what's behind (or to the sides of) the pole. Classic accidental shot! LOL
The sort of social event team is called Animacion and they are actually a lot of fun. We have played a few of the games they organize (including pool volleyball, drinking games, etc.). We’ve done their dance lessons (merengue, bachata, and salsa) at the pool and on the beach and have even done some pool and ocean aerobics. The drinking game lead to us hanging out with a group of Spaniards in their 20s the next day and drinking quite heavily and chanting “mamajuana, mamajuana!”

Our favorite drinks have switched from Brugal (yummy local rum) Cuba Libres, to Gin & Tonics, to Majestic w/ Brugal Anejo, to Mojitos and Caipirinhas. Mmmmm. Such important decisions we have to make during the day – what to drink? To lay at the beach or the pool? Go to the disco or watch a movie? Where to eat?

The sax player at night is wonderful, the pool is lit up and beautiful at night, there is a warm fountain to stand under, jets in certain areas of the regular pool, we can play pool, foosball, or chess in the game area, etc. etc. This place is a lot of fun!
What a couple of dorks.
What a couple of dorks.
That dress only barely makes it for playing pool!
That dress only barely makes it for playing pool!

Our Hotel Review for TripAdvisor

We absolutely loved our week at the Majestic. It was beautiful, tropical, and luxurious. We even went at the height of hurricane season and the weather was perfect. It was sunny all day and a heavy tropical rain came in every night. The staff was great, food okay, and grounds/beach wonderful. We highly recommend this place. We are already planning our next trip back.

Rooms: This hotel is brand new (Dec 2005) and our room was in perfect condition and super clean. The room reminded us of when we stayed in the Venetian in Las Vegas. Our room looked over the pool, which is lit up beautifully at night, and we could even see the ocean from our standard room. As stated in an earlier post, there is no handle to open the sliding glass door once you are on your patio, so make sure you leave it open a crack when you are out there. We did not tip which did not seem to be a problem (although maybe that’s why other rooms got towel animals and we did not! lol).

Grounds: I agree with an earlier post that the resort will look even more beautiful when the foliage has grown larger, but it is really beautiful as it is. There are ponds with fountains everywhere that they are thoughtful enough to turn off at night so the noise doesn’t bother, and they kept he grounds immaculate! Every morning there are people sweeping the bottom of the fountains, gardening, etc.

Pool/Beach: Can’t say enough about the pool. I could spend all day on the shallow shelf. Maybe take a break to get a drink at the swim-up bar or walk the length of the pool (drink in hand) since the whole thing is 3’9” deep from end to end. The ocean is clear, warm and turquoise blue. We went through almost an entire bottle of sunscreen.

As stated in previous posts, yes, there are a lot of topless women of all ages, shapes, and sizes: mostly at the beach, but also at the pool area. It’s not in bad taste since for them it’s completely normal – not done to flaunt or anything. My husband loved it and I even tried to act European for a day!

Activities: We did not pay for any of the extra activities but decided to enjoy the included ones. The snorkeling, although certainly not the Red Sea, is good even in the swimming area. We heard that the paid trip is no better.

The pool activities can be lots of fun. You can choose to join in, watch, or stay in one of the quieter parts of the pool. We played pool volleyball, water polo, aerobics (beach and pool), dance lessons, played throw the ball in the hole, drinking games, etc. You meet people from all other the world. Animation (the group of activities staff that keep everyone rallied) is tons of fun. Nelson, Sandy, Felix, July, and the rest are happy, nice, fun people that make sure everyone has a good time. They even dance with the guests in the disco at night. Thanks!

Food: We can and have put up with just about anything as far as food during our previous travels so we are okay with anything. For people who like good food – I mean good as in gourmet – you will hate the food here. On that level, it is terrible. And the wine, forget it! You do have the option of purchasing better wine though. But for those with standard food tastes, you will be quite happy. The variety for every meal is incredible and diversity in the restaurants is great.

I am vegetarian and it was sort of difficult. I’m sure I ended up eating chicken stock more than once, which I would never normally do. They don’t understand vegetarian at all so even if you tell them in Spanish, don’t get your hopes up. There are options, but you won’t get nearly the food selection of your fellow meat-lovers.

The pasta bar and omelet bar were the favorites. Tip: if you do dinner at the main buffet in the front, get some fresh blue cheese from the cheese station and maybe even some artichoke hearts or whatever else you like, and have the guy at the pasta bar add it to your made-to-order pasta dish. Favorite meals included lobster at the Gourmet and sushi at the Asian restaurant. Tip: they do not tell you anywhere, but you can eat at the Asian restaurant without reservations whenever you want. It’s only if you want to sit in the back w/ the Benihana-style chef that requires reservations (that meal is also very good).

As far as getting sick, well, we made many trips to the bathroom, but never felt ill so it wasn’t a problem.

Service: I am a service snob. I could not find any flaw in the service in any aspect of this resort. The room was clean, the staff everywhere friendly and at your service the second you walk up, the restaurant staff (wait, bus, and cooks) really on top of it, etc.

Language: Most of the staff seemed to speak at least some English, but we really didn’t know since we tried to speak Spanish as much as we could. We were in a Spanish speaking country after all and the gall some people have to expect them to speak English is just beyond me. The pool activities are all done in multiple languages.

Miscellaneous: There is an ATM in the lobby that seems to run out of money quite often. The Internet is fast and costs $5 US ½ hour, $8/hour, which can be spread out as you wish. You can get slightly better prices on souvenirs if you exit the hotel and go to the shopping plaza just outside the entrance. Make sure to haggle!

Negatives: Not much at all. The pool closes at 6pm, which is nice so there is not a lot of noise in the hotel rooms, but it would be nice if it stayed open a little later. There is no drink service at the pool or the beach. It’s not a big deal since the bars are close, but don’t expect a cabana boy.

About Us: This was our first trip to an all-inclusive, so we really don’t have anything to compare to other than other ‘normal’ luxury hotels we have stayed in. We normally do budget travel but have certainly stayed in and worked in our share of 4 and 5 star hotels/restaurants. So although we don’t mind staying in run-down places, we sure know what is expected of a luxury establishment.

0 Comments

Submit Your Comment
Thank you! Your comment has been received. :) It will be posted as soon as I get a chance to read it first.
Sorry, don't know what happened. Try later :(
Your email will not be shared or spammed in any way. It is only as extra assurance that you are a real person! ;) Leslie's Travel Snacks reserves the right to delete any comment that is abusive, self-promoting, nonconstructive, mean, or otherwise not in the spirit of this website.