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Reviewed 6 April 2018

Our visit to Grand Bahia S J was great. Traveled basically over holy week. Which didn't effect much. Everything was as expected. We flew into Samana which was an awesome drive to the resort. I knew it was going to be 2hrs and because of a little thing called "google maps" I knew the drive was going to an excursion on its own. As long as your driving during the day. If you land at night then that's just dumb unless your boring and what to sleep. The drive from Puerta Plata is good too, but busy and you see more of the counrty side from Samana.
Grounds were beautiful, lots of palms and well looked after gardens. Pool is clean and fun for the kids. Lots of room to play in the pool even during Easter weekend. Pool chairs do get taken(saved) up by 9am or 7:30am for good spot, but I just got up at 7am every morning for a run and snatched up our spots, didn't feel bad about it at all. Food was good, buffet is repetitive, but we liked that. I don't go to a 3 to 4 star hotel in another country and expect high end dishes. They had good pasta, fries, chicken, bread and hey even the hotdogs were good! kids enjoyed picking their own meals. Breakfast is awesome, french toast, fruit and bacon mostly for me. I'm not waiting in a line just for an omelet. Resort got very busy for Holy week Easter weekend thus so does the buffet. But they did a good job with keeping up with clean plates etc.
Beach is what you've read yes, but in the brown sand is lots of cool washed up coral from a reef about 1km off shore. Fun for the kids to collect and play in the sand with. didnt have any issue with fleas, we brought all the spray and lotions in case but didnt have to use it. Beach is 1km long, I enjoyed running on it and having the sun come up to the west side. View to the east is nice with the mountains. Kids were never bored and didn't have to do any of the kids club activities which are geared for younger kids, ours are 11 and 8. They do a good Micheal Jackson show and Circus act, but some nights the shows aren't worth watching.
Excursions into the beaches of Rio San Juan are recommended, they are close.
All other excursion are a 2 hour drive to Puerta Plata. The zip lining had great views of the surrounding mountains. Our waterfall trip was cancelled though because of too much rain that morning.
My only negatives were the weather, it was pretty cloudy and windy with rain off and on. Not that hot either because of the clouds. Rained all day one day, but cant control that. Was sunny one day and we all got killer tans. I also actually didn't like all the shuttle cars driving people around. They go fast and there is only about 1ft of room for you and the kids to safely move out of the way, which is always cause the shuttles are always there on every path almost. Wish they would stick to just the main path.
Also some local unsupervised kids running around causing trouble, I'm taking 8yr olds.
Good family resort, its big with lots to explore. The quite adult area was kinda closed and the adult pool was closed, but we wouldn't have gone there anyway.

Room Tip: 4 units or more away from the lobby and its quiet. But too far and its a long way back everyday. Rooms are small but you get use to it.
  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank dssouter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cservicebpsj, Quality & Customer Services Department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Dear Guest,

Thank you so much for your opinion about our hotel, we really appreciate it.

We are so happy that you have a great time in our services and facilities during your stay in our hotel and we hope to welcome you once again in Grand Bahia Principe San Juan.

We regret so much that we could not meet your expectations in some of our service. However, we sincerely appreciate your review as it is through communications on this nature that we can see what specific points we must focus to our attention.

Please do not hesitate to contact us whenever you are planning to come back.

Kindest regards,

Annyibert Gonzalez
Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
Quality & Customer Services Department

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 April 2018

The hotel is just "ok". By no means would I consider to be a four star hotel.

First of all, don't go there for the food, it's mediocre at best. We could do rounds of the buffet and end up with an empty plate because nothing really made us want to dig in. The meat seemed to be of low quality, and was reused the next day with a sauce. The fish was usually pretty dry. The "grilled" (fried) shrimps were actually good, so was the tempura cod. Veggies are mushie and wine was horrible. The a la carte restaurants are a bit better - def book EVERY night.

The service was meh. Some of the employees looked like they enjoyed their job and were there for you but most of them clearly weren't. Even if you tip them they often don't even respond, just take the money and ciao.

Accommodations. To be fair for an old hotel it's in pretty ok state. The room as fine, pool was good, most of the things were good.

Beach, just a disclaimer - this is in the north of the Dominican and you won't have a white beach (which isn't really an issue). Also take a bug spray in case of sand fleas.

Hotel is littered with Canadians. That was great, nice people!

Excursions. They are not how they advertise them, at all. For example on the "mangrove/lagoon" excursion you'll see 10m of "mangrove". BUT the excursion was really fun for us, we had a blast.

Also don't use room service. Very good chance they will never show up.

All in all we had an ok vacation. The **** food didn't really help but it wasn't so bad that we weren't capable of enjoying ourselves. I think for the price we paid it was fine-ish. (Would not go back tho)

Room Tip: Don't pick the suite. It's literally 2 rooms with an extra hole in the middle. But you'll have 2 room numbers.
  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank PieterV2089
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cservicebpsj, Quality & Customer Services Department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for taking time in sending us your feedback about your stay in our hotel. We are very sorry to hear that your experience was not a positive one. We sincerely regret the fact that we were not able to fulfill your expectations regarding some of our hotel facilities and services.

However, we have follow up with our staff regarding your concerns and we would like to emphasis that we strive work for to create the best experience possible for all our clients according to our standards.

Once more, we regret so much that you have not enjoyed your holidays as you were expected. We would like to have the opportunity to welcome you once again at any of our Hotels Bahia Principe in a near future, especially either of one of our Grand Bahia branch or Luxury Don Pablo Collection, which are a superior category and offer you an even more exclusive service and superior rooms.

Kind regards,

Annyibert Gonzalez
Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
Quality & Customer Services Department

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2018

The terrible food really brought the whole experience down. This place has 4 restaurants 3 of them being ala carte and serving mystery meat and food that does not live up to the description. We arrived on a Friday and were told that there were no reservation for any of the restaurants and we are just 2 people. After some pushing able to get into the mediterranean with a 9pm reservation. Then next night we "forced" our way into the "Italian" restaurant they had an appetizer buffet that was the same as the main buffet food. Our meals arrived and the beef looked white and was tasteless. We then ordered a pizza which was basically cheese on a black burnt piece of cardboard. The buffet was the same every single day for lunch and dinner. The only decent part was the omelet station for breakfast. This resort tries but really fails when it comes to food. The final night we got into the asian restaurant, which was the best one but still very bad. The pina coladas were nasty. The best part was that they were willing to fill personal cups. I do not recommend this place. We also booked an excursion on the Bahia website. We paid in full and received a confirmation number and location of pick up and time. Easter Sunday we arrived at 6:10am in the Lobby I told the person at the desk we were here for the excursion. by 6:40am we were nervous that no one had arrived. We called and were told there was no excursion for the day and to come back at 9:30 to speak to the tour manager. We came back at 9 and there was no apology and nothing the tour manager Sonny was willing to do. He told us to come back at 11. He finally came back at 11:35 still he had no solution for us. This was terrible customer service. Apparently there is not communication between the hotel and the tour booking on the website. After airing our grievances to Sonny he finally calls someone and then he tells me I need to send an email requesting a refund for my excursion. It was not right that I had to request my own refund and also request to be on another excursion the next day. We were looking forward to leaving the Resort and had lost half a day trying to figure everything out.

The beach at the resort has dark dirty sand and the water is not very clear. Also in the water there is large things meant to break waves. 2/4 pools were closed or not filled. This resort really is lacking in many many ways. There should be more entertainment and better music poolside. Coffee makers in the room would be an improvement also.

The best part about the hotel was the carts that bring you to and from your room. Overall we were very unhappy with this resort and will not return.

I could go on longer about our negative experiences but I don't want to continue to dwell on them. Avoid this place.

  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Lauren S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cservicebpsj, Quality & Customer Services Department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Dear Guest,
Thank you so much for taking time in sending us your feedback about your stay in our hotel. We are very sorry to hear that your experience was not a positive one. We sincerely regret the fact that we were not able to fulfill your expectations regarding some of our hotel facilities and services.

However, we have follow up with our staff regarding your concerns and we would like to emphasis that we strive work for to create the best experience possible for all our clients according to our standards.

Once more, we regret so much that you have not enjoyed your holidays as you were expected. We would like to have the opportunity to welcome you once again at any of our Hotels Bahia Principe in a near future, especially either of one of our Grand Bahia branch or Luxury Don Pablo Collection, which are a superior category and offer you an even more exclusive service and superior rooms.

Kind regards,

Annyibert Gonzalez
Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
Quality & Customer Services Department

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018

We went to this resort on our 40th anniversary,we had such a great time,,,,,the food was always great, pool area always clean and clear. The rooms were clean and updated and all the servers and housekeeping were very friendly. They would approach you if you looked lost and guide you to where you want to go. I was amazed at the amount of work these people got done without closing anything and keeping out of sight of the vacationers,{they just had a bad storm a week earlier} when we arrived the beach and buildings were covered in debris, but the next day they had the beach cleaned up and within 2 days the buildings were clean and washed.
They entertained all day long with Exercising,pool volleyball to sailing a boat made of fruit around the pool for everyone to enjoy. The night time shows were very good, they have mini put on the grounds they have horseshoe pit, it was just a fun filled 10 day vacation.

Room Tip: Make sure you ask for a room close to the buffet
  • Stayed: May 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
4  Thank stew s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cservicebpsj, Quality & Customer Services Department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Dear Guest,

We thank you for writing a review about your experience among us. In the name of the Hotel Management and all our staff, we would like to express you how glad we are to read your positive valuation about the hotel premises due to the arduous effort of our staff. In Grand Bahia Principe San Juan our customer’s satisfaction is part of our guiding principles so we can ensure pleasant experiences to our beloved guests.

Likewise, we welcome your feedback about the entertainment which has been shared with our Animation team.

In case you decide to visit us once again, please feel free to contact us.

Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, all-inclusive hotels for your holidays in the Dominican Republic.

Sincerely yours,

Annyibert Gonzalez
Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
Quality & Customer Services Department

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018 via mobile

Just returned from this hotel. The transfer bus ride to the hotel was ridiculously dangerous as the driver drove far too quickly in an unsafe manner. When you arrive there are 5 stars on the wall don't be fooled! In my husband's words this is a cheerful 3 star at best.

The general pool area and drinks service are ok, although the sun beds are old and dirty. They need replacing. The beach area is awful being covered in rotting weed. Most days one man with a garden rake tries to clean it up. An impossible task. The sea is dirty and is made more unattractive by huge black bags placed just off shore as breakers. Step into the sea and you cannot see your feet! Also the beach sun beds are filthy.

This is a dated hotel, the accommodation is basic with drawers that don't fit in the units, paint on the bath, yes paint! So when we showered we came out with white paint on our feet! No hot water! We were told to let the tap run for ten to fifteen minutes. It only ever got tepid but was mostly cold. Hit and miss house keeping, sometimes one towel, sometimes two, one day none at all! Same with the shampoo etc... I requested that the Pepsi light be replaced in the mini bar as my husband is diabetic. Only happened once for the whole of the stay,the rest of the stay it was only full sugar drinks. I had to request a change of bedlinen half way through the holiday.

The buffet restaurants made us both ill, my husband had a nasty stomach upset,the food was cold in the trays, the plates cold and at best the food could be described as boring, and we are not picky eaters. Sanitizer was only sometimes available at the door, again hit and miss! The beach restaurant served The same food everyday, always cold. Even the chips. Some days there was a bbq but The meat was undercooked and tepid and stored in cold containers. The food in the Mediterranean restaurant however was delicious and served piping hot!

Little trains travel along the same paths as pedestrians, you need to be aware of these as they travel too quickly!

Obviously I spoke to the management about these issues, whilst I was met with smiling faces and apologies, nothing was done. I was told that the hotel is 24 years old and this is the reason even the hotel rep who was trying to promote the chain and the privilege club confirmed that the hotel is too old! I was called on my last day in the resort and was asked if I was alright now. Quite honestly I couldn't be bothered to continue, what's the point?

I think the problems lie with the management as the waiters, cleaners etc look smart, are smiley and seem to try. They don't seem to be given any managerial direction whatsoever.

Stayed: April 2018, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Midterm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cservicebpsj, Quality & Customer Services Department at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Dear Guest,

We thank you for taking your time sharing your opinion with us on Trip Advisor which we will take in the highest consideration.

Regarding your comments we are very sorry to hear that we could not fulfil your expectations regarding our services and facilities, we must say that the level of satisfaction obtained concerning our hotel, services and facilities has always been very elevated according to the opinions reflected in our surveys.

We apologize if you felt you did not receive the service you were entitled to, but be assured that your comments have been already brought to the General Manager of our Resort and we will give the matters the proper attention.

We sincerely would like to have the opportunity to welcome you once again at Grand Bahia Principe San Juan to experience the hospitality of our people, the quality of our services and facilities and change any negative perception you may have about us.

Best wishes,

Annyibert Gonzalez
Grand Bahia Principe San Juan
Quality & Customer Services Department

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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