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Playa Naco Hotel
The first thing you need to know when you arrive is that there're some porters which will immediately try to take your luggages to bring it to the coach. The only problem is that after they will ask you 5 $ or 5€ for the service...it's up to you!
The transfert airport/hotel lasts about 15 - 20 min (it's very fast, if you think that some hotels are at a distance of 3h30)
When you arrive you're welcomed in the big hall of the hotel with a dance of the staff and a fruit punch (mix between orange, passion fruit and grenadine : very thist-quenching when it's hot).
The admission is quite fats, but you should better ask immediately the key of the safe (it costs 15$ and is strong recommended) and the remote control (free)
The rooms :
The rooms are really differents from each other and i've to admit we're lucky. We're accomodated in a superb maisonette at the last floor of the 14th building . On the first floor there was a little living room with a televison and a small frigo. The frigo was never be filled but anyway we never asked for it. On the second floor there was the bedroom with a huge bed, a chest of drawers with a television, and a bathroom. They have american sockets (the current there is 110 volt) so bring with you an adapter. To have tepid water we had to let the water pour for 10 min; and this is not bad if you think that others rooms didn't have it at all. In the corridor which gets to the room there's a fountain of mineral water.
The cleaning :
The rooms are perfectly clean. The cleaning women dust and make the bed and they're very nice.
Example of room :
The catering :
The quality of the service and of the food is medium for an all-inclusive hotel, indeed disappointing for a 4 star hotel. There're 4 restaurants and 1 snack-bar. The main restaurant is open from noon to 2.30 p.m. and from 7.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. Its main problem is the total lack of cleanliness and service. Unless you're the first to arrive you will never have a clean table or even just dressed. The plates are at your's disposal next to the buffets but to have the cuttlery you've to "intercept" a waiter and to wait for a long time. And even when you get them there're lot of possibilities they're dirty. at the beginning of the journey a guest disappointed with the cleanness of the plates, started to throw them one by one into the swimming pool, until the director of the hotel took them to the kitchen for a new cleaning..
The animation :
The perfect place if you're searching for quietness...but if you'd like also to have a bit of animation you've to know that the staff is not so active there. There're some musicians either during the day or the night, and at 3.30 p.m. there're some games at the swimming pool.
The day-trips :
The day-trips organized by the hotel are quite expensive (from 99$ to 149$ ). If you know a little of spanish and you're not alone, go to the commercial centre which is at 2 minutes walking distance: there, you'll find a larger range of choice and cheaper prices.
The souvenirs and the beach:
In the hotel the prices are really expensive (and rarely displayed) and you don't have to hesitate to negotiate. For example: we bought in the hotel a small cuddly monkey for 160 pesos, when the seller had asked just 3 minutes before for 500 ( which means almost 4 times more)
On the beach, some sellers will show you their products; they're still very expensive and even if you'll negotiate you won't obtain prices as good as in the commercial centre. Absolutely don't pay with dollars, cause you can risk to receive as change some forged money. Don't buy cigars there, cause often they're fake cubans made in Saint Domingue.
The beach :
We're not in the Caribbeans, but in the Atlantic Ocean. During our stay the sea wasn't very rough but full of seaweed and sometimes also rubbish.An advice: if you go there, settle you down in the beach of the right hotel.The sea is more protected and cleaner.
To conclude: you can't reproach the hotel for the prices of the souvenirs and the day-trips. All this is classical and is part of the culture of the Dominican Republic. It's above all a very poor and warm popolation for whom the tourism is the main source of income.
Nevertheless, the lack of cleanness of the catering and the dilapidation of certain rooms are less forgivable.Some tourists changed room three times room without being really satisfied, and some others have difficulties to get back their money after the annullation of a day-trip organized by the hotel. In fact it doesn't deserve its 4 stars, but we had a good time anyway. We went there because of the sun and the rest, and it's exactly what we got.
We've the impression that the hotel try to work out but without success. It's part of a big complex of 4 hotels which go along the beach, and the others 3 have a better reputation.