Trying to decide between the Iberostar Grand Hotel in Punta Cana and the Gran Bahia Principe Ambar. Would appreciate any input I can get. I have price quotes that have a $1300 difference, with the Iberostar being more expensive. Don’t want to pay more if there is not a big difference, but then again I don’t want to fall into the you get what you pay for category.
I have not stayed at the Iberostar, but have been to the Bahia. For $1300 less, I wouldn’t hesitate to go to the Bahia Ambar. First class resort. Recently others have stayed there, I’m sure they will confirm my thoughts.
The reciprocal of your addage is “you don’t get what you don’t pay for.” This is almost always true in life.
We are staying at the IB Grand Bavaro in March so have not been there yet; however, we stayed at the sister property in the Riviera Maya of Mexico and I will say that the IB Grand collection is, in my humble opinion, in a class by itself for all-inclusive adult-only luxury resorts.
I think you need to decide what level of quality you truly require from a resort. The IB Grand promises the absolute best quality of accommodations, food, service and ambiance of most any all-inlcusive resort you will find. From personalized butler service in your room to the pillow menu that allows you to choose your own pillow, true gourmet food with unlimited visits to the five star a la carte restaurants and plentiful loungers and palapas around the pools and beach so there is never a need to play the “towel game,” the Grand is the best that Punta Cana has to offer in A-Is.
Good luck with your decision.
I would have to say that I personally would choose the Iberostar Grand Bavaro over the Ambar. I just stayed at the Bahia Ambar this past November 2008. I also just stayed at the sister resort Iberostar Grand Paraiso in the Mayan Riviera June 2008.
My trip to the Ambar was nice but it did not compare to the Iberostar Grand Paraiso. The service at the Ambar is ok where the service that the Grand collection provides is fantastic white glove VIP type service. The Alcohol selection at the Ambar stinks…too many things are extra$$$$. The Grand collection is topshelf and not stingy.
I am booked for my 1 yr Anniversary/30th Bday at the Iberostar Grand Bavaro for May 1 2009. I paid way more money for this coming trip then I did for my trip to the Ambar and if the Iberostar Bavaro Grand compares to its sister in Mexico then it will have been money well worth it.
We were next door last week and were able to see a little of the Iberostar. Looked awesome even though only opened. Today I saw the reviews and I would not hesitate one second if I had the chance to choose. Iberostar hands down. What other resort do you know that has just opened that has reviews like that. I’ll tell you, none…
Exactly, NONE that I’m aware of. Will be checking it out next week.
Thanks for the input. If anyone else wants to add anything I would appreciate it. So far I have a pretty good idea on which way we are going to go. Now if we could just move the calendar ahead 7 weeks.
Did you ever consider Excellence?
Considered Excellence the 2 issues that led me away were the comments I read about trash on the beach if you walked off resort property (I like to walk for miles) and no buffett or reservations for dinner.
$1300 difference? I would not hesitate to stay at the Bahia and save the cash or take a 2nd trip to another resort with the savings.
I stayed at the Bahia 2 years ago and this year upgrading to the Ambar…from what Funmuck described…most things would be equal minus having to pay a couple bucks perhaps for “top shelf liquor” and even that seems to vary with each report…
Unless I am missing something, I can’t justify $1300 MORE to have a better drink selection…
I am sure the IB Grand is nice but…wow $$$$$$
Great observation monctonguy!
$1300 difference can get you another week at really good resort…maybe 2 weeks in the off season at a 4 star.
The reviews and photos for the Iberostar Grand make me want to try it out as well but in these tough economic times…you have to maximize your vacation dollar.
I stayed at the Ambar last year…and feel I received full value for money if not more.
Then again I’m fairly easy to please…so each to his/her own.