TripAdvisor traveler ratingbased on 8416 reviews
LocationPunta Cana - Beach
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General policies & fine print
Check-in Policy - Hotel requires a credit/debit card authorization or cash deposit upon check-in for incidentals; this will place a hold on your funds.
Convention Policy - Individuals attending a convention cannot book this property for their stay. If found attending a convention, guests may be subject to higher room rates upon arrival.
Hotel Spring Break Policy - This hotel cannot guarantee a spring break-free environment.
Transfer Policy - A price may display when children stay free, if your vacation includes transfer to your hotel.
General Information - Room taxes and service fees are included in vacation price. Minimum night stay restrictions may apply. Reservation changes may not be permitted unless authorized by the hotel.
Ratings & reviews
TripAdvisor traveler rating8416 reviews
NIGHTMARE at BAHIA principe
I stayed at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda in Punta Cana from 11/8/2019-11/12/2019 and I will NEVER-EVER go back. The staff was nice, helpful and polite. However, during day 2 of our stay, the staff was very pushy about my friend and I going to the COCO Bongo night club. We ended up going... When we walked in the door of the COCO Bongo- the representative from the Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda took my friend and I to the “VIP” area, where there were several other people, to include a local gentleman who claimed to be a bartender at the Hard Rock Cafe. The following day, he came to Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda to pick me up and show me around Punta Cana. What happened never is a complete nightmare. I was given the date rape drug, and I was raped and left for dead on the beach. Thank god I woke up- and I asked the man to return me to the resort. When we got back to the resort, as soon as I saw the hotel gate I got out of his car and walked around the guard tower so he could no longer physically get to me. I told the guards that the man sitting in the car had just raped me, taken the hotel band off my wrist and gave me a drug. I told the guard my name and he said that someone would be there in 5 minutes to take me to my room. I told him I would like to see a doctor and told him again what the man sitting in the car had done to me. At the point, another security guard walked up to me and asked if “my friend” could come say bye to me and talk to me. I said “NO! He raped and assaulted me.” Well, ten seconds later , the man who assaulted me walks up behind me .... on to Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda property and says he’s leaving and asks if I’m okay. I told him I’m fine and told him not to touch me. The man leaves and the three guards are sitting there snickering . I asked where my ride was and now they said they don’t speak English. .... I finally made it back to my room. The following morning- my friend and I went to eat, and it was clear the employees at the resort knew what had happened to me. One employee snickered and said “yes we said COCO Bongo was fun, but don’t hang with any locals there.” They were all essentially making fun and laughing at what happened to me. I told the Head security at the resort and he helped me to file a police report. I am almost 100% sure that this man has assaulted and raped tourist before. He hasn’t been arrested yet according to the rep at the US EMBASSY that I have contact with. For 1. I would Not go to Punta Cana, DR I would NOT stay at Luxury Bahia Principe Esmeralda, security and safety there is laughable at best. It is Not safe for Americans there and I know I was targeted for being American. And last , do not go to COCO Bongo. I’ve attached pics so ppl know this review I real- and I do not want it removed.
Punta Cana Family Vacation
We’ve travelled to Punta Cana twice now as a family. The first time, we went with our family of 4. We enjoyed it so much that we invited the rest of our family to join us, (there were 8 of us in total) for my father-in-law’s 75th birthday celebration. Both times, we stayed at the Bahia Principe Esmeralda, which we absolutely LOVE! The staff are friendly, inviting, professional and they always make us feel welcome! Louis is awesome!! The meals are delicious, where there is always a wide variety of food being offered. The a la carte restaurants are also quite good! (Brazilian one being one of our favourites!) As a family, we all enjoy an active lifestyle. We loved having access to the tennis courts which we used every morning after breakfast (be sure to reserve in advance) which is just a short shuttle bus away form the hotel. We also enjoy playing beach volleyball, which, of course, is on the beautiful beach with an incredible view of the ocean! There are also many activities in and around the pool during the day. (One of my personal favourites is the kayak race, which I’ve won both times we were there!) The rooms are lovely & spacious, and the beds are very comfortable! Our mini bar was always fully stocked with beer (& pop for the kids), and it was nice to have a little bag of chips to nibble on at the end of the day, when we were getting ready for dinner. The bar staff are also incredible, working tirelessly each day in the sun for many people on vacation. Hugo (he works at the bar lobby in the evenings) made the best pina coladas! The evening entertainment is also wonderful! The hotel would always put something for the kids earlier in the evening. Then, they would have an evening activity later on. We really enjoyed the beach party, as well the Michael Jackson show. In sum, we really enjoy our vacations in Punta Cana! We’ve already recommended this place to our friends & family. We hope to be back again soon! Kelli Callaghan, Jeff Snyder & our boys, Aidan (14) & Darcy (13) 😀
Not bad but probably wouldn’t return
We were there in March. Checkout was a nightmare. When we got to the resort they made us pre-check in. When I mentioned to the staff that my travel agent had sent a request for us to be in a complex close to the beach, I was very rudely told to go sit down. We then had to go to the main lobby at 3pm to officially check in. I again said that my travel agent had requested rooms close to the beach and again was dealt with very rudely. They tried to put me in the complex which was the farthest away from the beach and I told them I wasn’t going there. They said all the other rooms were taken, even though people on the same plane as us were given rooms in building 90-92 which are the closest. Only when I mentioned that I researched this resort on trip advisor did they decide to find another room. Only then did they “want to make us happy”. On a happier note, the beach is gorgeous and if u get up by 7ish you can get a hut. We don’t do the pool but there looked to be lots of chairs available there. We did a la carte restaurants every night but one and they were all very good except for the Oriental Takara which was not good. The buffet was very good but the main buffet is very busy, often with lineups. We ate at the other buffets for the most part and they were great. The wait staff/ bartenders at the beach were the friendliest people on the whole resort. Very efficient and all around awesome! The wait staff at the lobby bar would walk by our table and not even look at us. A couple of times we left cause we couldn’t even get a drink (which has never happened to us in our 9 previous trips to the DR). You can use the other surrounding resorts but other than our a la cartes we didn’t. Due to our check in difficulties, I wouldn’t return to this resort unless it was much cheaper than what we paid. I don’t enjoy being dismissed or having to argue with staff when I’m only wanting to have a relaxing vacation.
Not a place for children - hand, foot & mouth problem
Overall not such a great experience. Our 18 month old baby picked up hand foot and mouth disease due to poor cleanliness levels at the hotel. Reading other reviews, this is not the first case of it and the hotel needs to do something about it. The worst bit is the hotel clinic trying to make money out of it - the local doctor (Dr Himmler) charged us for a consultation fee only to refer us to the local hospital where we wasted half a day and paid $450 to be told our child had hand foot and mouth disease. This clearly could have been dealt with by the local hotel doctor but the money to be made by sending us to the hospital is just a money making business and is very unethical behaviour. My husband got food poisoning twice from Il Capriccio restaurant and the buffet restaurant. The Italian restaurant served up a raw pizza with heavy raw dough. Unbelievable! We didn't like any of the a la carte restaurants, they were awful. The buffet food was better if you chose carefully. The beach was really nice, we loved it, however the seat situation is very dull. Despite not being allowed to reserve seats, everyone does it and it means tons of seats are left empty for the whole day with towels left on them from early morning. We paid for a late check out due to husband and baby being sick and a late flight. Both were trying to sleep at lunch time when a crazy drill sound started up and woke them. Just outside our room massive works and renovations began with dust flying everywhere and of course a really loud noise. What a disaster for my family just trying to get some sleep to get well for a flight. The grounds are amazing and really well kept. A lot of the staff are very nice and friendly but then a lot of them are very rude and useless, saying yes to everything and then doing nothing. A lot of the staff have a tendency to touch our little boy on the face which is very unhygienic and awkward for us as parents. The noise around the pool is really too much most of the time. Peace and quiet is not a thing at this hotel. It's a shame because this hotel has a lot of potential but I don't think I'd recommend it nor would I return. It lacks class and and being a 5 star hotel is a stretch.
We recently returned from our 32nd visit at the Luxury Bahia Esmeralda. The entire experience from start to finish was fantastic. The management treated us to a surprise, private dinner at the jacuzzi pool with four of our friends. It was a wonderful evening! The staff at the resort are now like our family, they are so kind and loving and predict our every need or want. The resort remains spotless. The food is excellent. A special thank you to Felix (butler service) and Juany (Jasmine buffet) for their exceptional care of us.