All-inclusive rates cover all dining venues and bars
Air-conditioned rooms with king or two double beds, flat-screen TVs, and balconies
Two zero-entry pools with swim-up pool bars and regular pool parties
Small water park for children featuring slides, fountains, and jets
Oceanfront trapeze area offers free circus-style aerial classes
Restaurants range from buffets to Mexican, Asian, and Italian
Gym has free classes and personal training sessions included with all stays
Disco and the Beach Bar open until sunrise (or later)
Outdoor sport courts and activities, plus a kids' club
Club-level upgrades include private lounge and free Wi-Fi
Ocean can be rough and there are vendors hustling on the beach
All a la carte restaurants require reservations
Beach and pool parties mean loud music until quite late (pro for some)
No beach umbrellas and the only shade is from oceanfront palm trees
Vibe frequently veers toward rowdy
Drinks are generally panned by previous guests
Rooms and decor are a bit dated and tired
Wi-Fi isn't free
Occidental Caribe is a three-pearl oceanfront all-inclusive modeled after a medieval castle that draws families and partiers alike. Its 798 air-conditioned rooms are pleasant enough, but a bit dated, and include flat-screen TVs, minibars, and private balconies. The long beach has flour-soft sand and many lounge chairs (but no umbrellas), while two zero-entry pools are surrounded by cabanas and lounge chairs. An oceanfront trapeze area offers free circus-style aerial classes. A small kids' water park and indoor kids' club are available for the little ones. Seven restaurants receive mostly positive reviews and range from Italian to Asian cuisines. Premium packages are available with benefits like private check-in, a private lounge, and free Wi-Fi. For something that's similarly priced but a bit more modern, check out sister property Occidental Punta Cana, though it lacks the kids' water park.
Rowdy resort draws pulls partiers and families, though its medieval style is looking tired
Occidental Caribe opened in 2000 and this all-inclusive resort is modeled after a medieval castle. Unfortunately, the resort has seen better days, and the themed decor is looking dated and tired throughout the property. Outdoors, though, things are relatively pleasant, so long as you're not expecting a peaceful and pampering escape. The resort’s nearly 100-acre oceanfront grounds are lush and full of palm trees, mango trees, manicured grassy fields, and blossoming flowers like hibiscus and ixoras. However, this Occidental is very much a party resort, and with the abundance of families and boozy groups of friends here it can get loud. The sprawling party pool has a spring-break like vibe with foam parties, DJs playing ear-splitting pop music, and boozy crowds to match. As expected, there’s lots of drinking going on and things can get a little wild (and less-than-classy). Entertainment-wise, the hotel has beach parties (sometimes until late night) and well-liked performances like Michael Jackson impersonators, Las Vegas and tropical reviews, circus shows, and crowd-pleasing dance lessons. Most guests are from the U.S. and Canada, but we saw quite a few Russians during our visit.
On the sea near Bavaro Beach, within a 15- to 25-minute drive of most tourist sights
Occidental Caribe is located along the beach to the northeast of busy Bavaro Beach -- the nerve center of Punta Cana's tourist development. It's near other large resorts, but not much is within an easy walk of the property. The nearest golf course was designed by Jack Nicklaus and is 10 to 15 minutes from the resort. A grocery store, craft shops, and lots of local stores are a 15- to 20-minute drive from the property. For a taste of epic nightlife and Las-Vegas style shows, the famed Coco Bongo nightclub is a 20-minute drive from the resort. An adventure park with zip lines, Zorbing, a paintball field, and a stunning turquoise cenote takes about 25 minutes to reach by car. Punta Cana International Airport is a 30-minute drive from the resort. It's around two and a half hours by car to the nation's capital, Santo Domingo.
Dated, air-conditioned rooms with neutral color palates, wicker furniture, minibars, and private balconies
Occidental’s rooms are spacious, but with their wicker accents, mustard-colored details, matching curtains, and framed drawings of palm trees, things definitely look dated and tired. All units come with either one king bed or two double beds. Amenities include ceiling fans, flat-screen TVs with cable channels, irons, ironing boards, minibars stocked with soda, water, juice, beer, and snacks, and coffeemakers with free coffee. Wi-Fi is also available but we were disappointed there's a fee in all rooms except for the Suite-Level premium rooms.
The pricier Suite Premium Level rooms are a top offering and include amenities like Bluetooth-enabled alarm clocks and lots of closet space. The Suite-level bathrooms blend modern and rustic elements. Expect tan tiled floors, walls covered in distressed cayenne and tan tiles, a wide, wood framed mirror, and marble vanities. Glass-walled stand up showers with large shower heads are complemented by a whirlpool tub. Hairdryers and beauty mirrors are also standard in all guest rooms. The suites have a ton of toiletries like bar soap, shaving kits, shoe polish sponges, shower caps, dental kits, vanity kits, combs, and sewing kits. All bathrooms have bar soap, wall-mounted shampoo, conditioner, and body wash dispensers. All rooms have balconies (some with ocean views). Cribs and extra beds are available for a fee.
Gorgeous sandy beach, two pools, kid’s water park, six all-inclusive restaurants, circus trapeze, and gym
Occidental’s best features are outdoors. The sandy beach is long and gorgeous with floury soft sand and lots of lounge chairs, but the only shade is from the palm trees lining the beach. There aren’t any umbrellas or cabanas. Free non-motorized water sports are a nice plus and include kayaks, boogie boards, and Hobie Cat catamarans. There’s also a beach volleyball and shuffleboard court. Occidental has two huge zero-entry freshwater pools surrounded by lounge chairs, thatch cabanas, and trellises; both have swim-up pool bars. One pool is quiet and better for families while the other gets a little rowdy with spring-break-style foam parties and DJs bumping loud music. There’s also a small, children-only water park with slides, jets, and lots of fountains for kids to get soaked.
Occidental Caribe has six restaurants and the a la carte options all require reservations. Al Alcazar is the resort’s main buffet with live stations that serves international cuisine amidst cathedral ceilings, thick pillars, and arched doorways. It also has a huge open-air balcony with pool and ocean views. La Dolce Vita is the Italian restaurant that feels like a medieval great-hall with its high ceilings and multi-tiered iron chandelier. Kyoto is the Japanese restaurant with teppanyaki live-action tables. El Conuco is the Dominican restaurant with a colorful countryside vibe. La Hacienda serves up Mexican cuisine; La Comedie restaurant serves French cuisine; and Don Simon is a pizzeria near the beach. Marenostrum offers seafood and meat buffet dinners, and an la carte snack menu during the day. It also provides early-morning (or late night) breakfasts. The resort has four main bars. There are two lobby bars, a sports bar with multiple flat-screen TVs and pool tables, and a Beach Bar open until dawn. The disco also stays open until the wee hours for dancing. Twenty-four-hour room service is available for a fee
It’s a trend in Punta Cana to offer circus activities and Occidental Caribe doesn’t disappoint. It has a beachside trapeze setup with a circus swing. There’s a full-service PADI certified dive shop and all stays include a free introductory scuba class. Flip is Occidental’s kids' club for children between the ages of 4- and 12-years old. Kids can choose from Nintendo Wii game consoles, a rock wall, sports equipment, a trampoline, and lots of activities including Spanish lessons and ice cream parties. For teens, Game Zone has multiple pool tables and a ping-pong table.
Metamorphosis Spa offers all the standard spa and salon services like massages, facials, and mani/pedis; and has a sauna and a whirlpool tub. The resort's mirror-walled gym overlooks the laid-back pool and has treadmills, weight machines, stationary bicycles, free weights, and dumbbells. The equipment’s seen better days and covered in rusty spots. A nice plus are the free personal training sessions and classes including yoga, Zumba, and water aerobics. Access to the asphalt tennis and basketball courts are free, as are racket rentals, balls, and tennis lessons.
Other amenities include a 24-hour on-site clinic (a fee to use services), a theater with nightly entertainment, and a casino. Upgraded Premium-package stays are also available and come with perks like a private check-in, lounge, priority reservation booking, and free internet. The hotel can arrange babysitters, tours, airport transfers, car rentals, and call taxis. Laundry service is available for a fee. Guests staying in suites have a private check in with its own bar and snack bar. Wi-Fi is available for a fee unless you’re staying in one of Occidental Caribe’s Suite-level rooms.
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