I’ve read many reviews of resorts all around the DR, but can’t seem to find any on Samana. Are they in a different part of this forum?
Most of the All Inclusive resorts located on Samana Peninsula they went thru an extensive renovation in the last year and they just open or they will open this winter under new ownership or new management. If you find any review on this resorts dating before November 2006, just disregard, will not apply to the followings:
Gran Bahia Principe Samana - location Los Cacaos
Gran Bahia Principe Cayacoa - location city of Samana
Gran Bahia Principe Cayo Levantado - location Island of Cayao Levantado
Gran Bahia Principe El Portillo - location outside Las Terrenas
Other All Inclusive resorts such as:
Casa Marina Bay - location Las Galeras
Viva Windham Samana - location Punta Bonita outside Las Terrenas
Bahia Estella - location next to Viva Windham Samana
Cacao Beach - location Las Terrenas
Club Aligio - location Las Terrenas
Punta Bonita Hotel - location Punta Bonita
Went thru upgrades and the majority of guests are from Europe or Dominican Republic and you will find revue in German, Italian and Spanish. I read a few in English on trip advisory web site, but not much.
Guests from Germany where the first one arriving this season on November 06 2006 at Gran Bahia Principe Cayacoa, and review should start being posted on travel forums in German. M’frog could keep us current with this.
Guests from Canada they will start arriving on charter flights to the new International Airport at El Catey, Samana Peninsula, from December 18 2006 until April 30 2007 for these resorts.
After Christmas 2006 people returning from these trips will post their reviews on here for sure.
Be patient, everyone is anxious to read the reviews, special if is a new destination or new hotels, I hope they will be favorable, with a lot of Wow’s.
Have good day.
For easy understanding of Hotel location on Samana Peninsula use the Peninsula map found here:
Casa Marina bay was our destination ;D. I can’t say enough about what a great trip we had! The resort was great! Way more than expected by all 11 of us! Great food, Great activities, Great property! I have read everywhere that the beaches are the best anywhere, Well, there not perfect and its all what you want!The beach is narrow, and the bay ocean floor is covered in Sea grass. The wave action, pulls up the grass and it lands on the beach at low tide. Nobody clears it away( although after talking with thr dive staff, aquaium opperator and some activity staff and explaining this as a negative to swimmers) two poor guys were attempting to rake it up by midf week. I say poor guys, because why rake it , the resort has 4 wheelers that could have easily been employeed to the task! ( you will however never get ahead of the sea grass, although the couple of boats employeed there, the props have cleared an area for pleasant swimming and water arobics. Sa soon as my New years head clears I will post some more at Caca Marina bay under Samana forums. Smarty, we loved this Place!
Dec,23 to 30th we traveled to Las Galeras, Casa Marina Bay. We flew Sun Quest Sky service out of Toronto. We were the first Sky service flight into El Catey, our plane returned empty! El Catey will officially open in Mid January 07. If you are traveling, be aware that at present there are No services at the airport. No snack bars, shops, not even a pop machine, so stock up with snacks off the plane, for the 1hr 45 min trip to the resort. Check in at the resort was smooth, Nicholas was very willing to assist, but nobody was that experienced in the check in process. We were 11 people, we booked 1 ocean-view, three garden and one bungalow. We were upgraded two three ocean-view, without asking, we later asked to upgrade the last garden view but the hotel had become full. Not a problem as all the rooms were nice!You must buy the safe for the week? we went to the room and found it non functional which meant a trip back to the desk for a key.( it might have been explained at check in , but wasn’t). We experienced a couple of minor issues that were all corrected right away!( we heard some guest bitching at not having a TV Remote , so you know they would bitch at anything, come on!!!) We arrived at about 3:30 so the lunch buffet was coming to an end and the snacks weren’t out yet. we had not fully explained the all inclusive routine to all traveling with us so,there were 5 upset teenagers( that the food was terrible, our mistake) We took an early dinner buffet, well, it was GREAT, the selection was HUGE!! And the TEENS , all filled up and the wining stopped!! Xmas GALA, Snacks, bars, ala carts all were Great!!Breakfast, lunch and diner all were great, Huge selections, nobody in our group went hungry, we were usually suffering through a cigar and liquor after every meal!! Activities all on-site made it great! 4 wheeler ride, diving, horse back riding, pool and beach activities all great. I had read earlier reviews that were about snorkeling. This was something we have always done on our trips( usually on excursion/ catamaran). The Aquarium??? Run buy a Japanese gentleman and his grandson, well at first I was a Little upset( having read other comments, its a free ocean?)Well, for 10 euros $12 us at 11:30, 2:30 & 3:30 they guide a snorkeling experience you won’t forget. They feed the fish, All kinds of fish , you wouldn’t see these fish if they weren’t holding there attention. I snorkeled, the bay on my own, and there was nothing but sea grass!! I saw one, small fish, one starfish, on my own. So, at the price of $12us several of the 1st timers went a couple of times. They only take 6-8 people at a time so they aren’t making a killing( a great wage for there), but they are offering a service otherwise not available! we did have an issue with the wind surfing( non motorized sports free) well be prepared!!! who goes to the beach will 4000peso . They wanted a deposit on the board and an hour lesson. We got away with the 3000 deposit but they demanded the teens to take the lesson. And they watched that we didn’t let anyone else try the board. This was the only downside , but you should be aware. Some night shows were good some not so, but we did so much and played so hard we were usually down by 10pm. The kids did the disco a couple of nights, 5 of them hand no trouble and felt safe all the time! I could go on and on!! The resort was better than advertised, property was great( we got the same spot each day at the beach and pool), equipment was great, Staff was great( spoke less English, than anything else) but you eventually got what you were after. We would recommend as a family resort, something for all ages. I would be happy to answer any questions. Have a great New Year to all, and enjoy Casa Marina Bay. Smarty