Pros

  • Adults-only all-inclusive resort along excellent white-sand beach
  • Resembles a Spanish castle and has a stunning cliffside location
  • Gorgeous rooms have jetted tubs and furnished terraces -- some with ocean views
  • Upgraded suites have butler service, outdoor hot tubs, and living rooms
  • Six swimming pools, including one with a swim-up bar, and poolside service
  • Buffet, Asian, Italian, and steakhouse restaurants; plus 24-hour room service
  • Oceanfront, thatched-roof seafood restaurant, Blue Marlin
  • Sanctuary Town has included dining options and live entertainment
  • Extensive spa area with its own juice bar, massage cabanas, and private pool
  • Free transportation to nearby Punta Espada, a renowned par 72, 18-hole golf course
  • 15-minute taxi ride from Punta Cana International Airport
  • Daily activities such as cooking classes and games, and nightly entertainment
  • Free property-wide Wi-Fi
  • Multiple wedding and event venues and packages
See More Pros

Cons

  • Far from the rest of Punta Cana; no nearby activities or dining
  • Some complaints about food variety and quality, as well as alcohol options
  • Water sports such as kayaks and snorkeling gear aren't free
See More Cons

Bottom Line

The 323-room Sanctuary Cap Cana is a romantic adults-only all-inclusive resort set along a lovely white-sand beach a 15-minute drive from Punta Cana International Airport. This luxury hotel looks like a Spanish castle town by the ocean and it's located in the still developing Cap Cana complex, a bit removed from the main resort area. All rooms have attractive decor, jetted tubs, and furnished outdoor spaces, while upgraded units add outdoor hot tubs, living rooms, and/or private plunge pools. Its beautifully decorated swimming pools, full-service spa and fitness center, and array of daily activities and nighttime entertainment are standouts in the Dominican Republic. All-inclusive restaurants include buffet, Asian, Italian, and overwater seafood options, plus there are 24-hour room service and bars serving non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages. However, some past guests have complained of a lack of variety and quality when it comes to both food and alcohol. Nevertheless, this is one of the D.R.'s best options, though it’s worth comparing rates with the similarly impressive Zoetry Agua Punta Cana, which has a more intimate feel.

See More Bottom Line

Oyster Hotel Review

Sanctuary Cap Cana

What Are the Design and Scene Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

This romantic all-inclusive, adults-only luxury resort resembles a Spanish village thanks to multiple pools, a restaurant and shop plaza, and several pastel-colored buildings with red-tiled roofs.

Lovers of the Middle Ages, historic-looking sites, and remote, adults-only resorts will likely be enamored with the Sanctuary Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic’s private, gated Cap Cana community development. This all-inclusive hotel underwent extensive renovations in 2018-19 to add an additional 185 rooms and two towers, update the lobby, and refresh the expansive spa and fitness center. The hotel has gone back and forth on its kids’ policies and is entirely adults-only as of Dec. 2015. There are multiple buildings, giving the property the feel of a small village, and rooms are split into three different sections: Colonial, Castle, and Villas. The Castle tower is geographically separated from the bungalows and villas at the other end of the resort, and is around a five-minute walk from the main lobby and pool.

The striking property is filled with buildings painted in charming pale orange and yellow hues and topped by red tiles, well-manicured grounds housing palm trees, water features, and freeform pools, and chic wicker daybeds for lounging. The Castle tower is a standout for its jutting turrets, bridges over a moat (that doubles as a swimming pool for guests on the ground floor), and a central space with its own lobby. In the bowels of the Castle, hallways look onto a subterranean waterfall that fills a larimar-colored pool of water that looks like it could belong in some forgotten temple. They lead to an extensive spa area that has its own hidden interior courtyard with a half-moon pool and massage cabins. Due to the elevation, rooms here have a bird's-eye view of the cliff all the way to the shore. Fortunately, views of the lovely white-sand beach and beautiful blue Caribbean Sea in the distance are found throughout the resort.

The property feels like a little village, enhanced by the Sanctuary Town, a collection of cafes and bars that’s included in the generous all-inclusive package. Guests can be found at one of the several outdoor pools – though the main pool with a swim-up bar is a favorite – plus some have their own private pools and ocean-view outdoor terraces. Butler service is available for certain suite categories, adding to the property’s already luxe feel.

This is one of the best resorts in Punta Cana; in this price range, the smaller Zoetry Agua Punta Cana is another great option but lacks the golf course here. Other top options such as Eden Rock at Cap CanaTortuga Bay Hotel, and the The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real tend to cost more.

See More What Are the Design and Scene Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Where Is Sanctuary Cap Cana Located in Punta Cana?

Closer to the airport than the tourist epicenter of Bavaro, in the large, half-built Cap Cana development 

Sanctuary Cap Cana is located deep in the sprawling but semi-arrested Cap Cana community development, along a gorgeous white-sand beach. How far is Sanctuary Cap Cana from airport? It’s about a 15-minute drive from the Punta Cana International Airport and a 30-minute drive from the tourist town of Bavaro, the epicenter of most of Punta Cana’s resorts. To get to the hotel, guests must first drive past the initial Cap Cana security gate, then past long stretches of scrub and unoccupied residential and hotel properties on a well-maintained but badly signed road. The resort feels isolated from the rest of the of the Punta Cana community, which can be either a good thing or a bad thing, depending on what guests want from their vacations. 

Those who are happy lazing by the pool and small beach and eating at the several restaurants on-site will be perfectly fine here, but those looking to explore the local culture may feel a bit trapped at some point during their stay.

Be aware that you cannot drink the water in Punta Cana, but bottled water is part of the all-inclusive rate. For those asking "What are the best months to go to Dominican Republic?," consult our breakdown of the Best Time to Visit the Dominican Republic.

See More Where Is Sanctuary Cap Cana Located in Punta Cana?

What Are Rooms Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Beautiful suites are decked out in elegant, soft decor, and have jetted tubs, furnished outdoor spaces, and top-notch amenities; upgrades add ocean views.

There are 323 suites split into three sections -- the main Colonial section, the Castle, and the Villas. Decor varies a bit depending on the section, but most rooms have an elegant, light design consisting of beige marble flooring or light wood floors, white walls and linens, and wood furniture. Gold light fixtures, vibrant blue throw pillows, or exposed wood beam ceilings add character to the luxe, beachy rooms. All rooms have private outdoor spaces and most rooms have ocean views. Upgrades for private outdoor pools, hot tubs, and sunbeds facing the ocean are available. Swim-out suites are available on the ground floor of the Castle tower.

Decadent Honeymoon Suites are also located in the Castle section and have private plunge pools, in addition to butler service. The Monarch Villa looks right out onto the beach with a large porch area facing the sand. Luxury Junior Suite, Premium Junior Suite Ocean View, and Premium Luxury Junior Suite Ocean View are the newest units.

All rooms have impressive bathrooms with both showers and separate jetted tubs, 24-hour room service, walk-in closets with silky bathrobes, slippers, and safes, minibars refreshed daily, espresso machines, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Some suites have living rooms.

Butler service is available for guests in Luxury, Villa and Castle suites.

See More What Are Rooms Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Are Pools Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

There are multiple pools across the village-like property, including a beachfront option with a swim-up bar.

The Sanctuary has six swimming pools, though you might have to hunt around to find them. The most obvious is the large, lagoon-shaped infinity-edge pool overlooking the beach. Unlike at most all-inclusive resorts, the swim-up bar typically doesn't get too crowded. Apart from the hot tub at the end of the pool, there's another small wading pool (and "small" is a relative concept here) around the corner with a fountain along one end and even more lounge chairs for sunbathing.

The other pools are somewhat hidden. The moat around the Castle is also swimmable, and there’s another pool on the lobby level with fun hanging chairs, ocean views, and an adjacent bar for snacks and beverages. There's also a rectangular, medium-size infinity pool overlooking the main lagoon pool.

Poolside drink service is available and there are ample lounge chairs. Additionally, poolside activities and games sometimes take place.

See More What Are Pools Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What's the Beach Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

The beautiful beach has white sand abutting the pretty water, plus ample loungers and a snack bar.

Sanctuary Cap Cana has a wide white-sand beach that gently slopes into the clear ocean. There are plenty of lounge chairs, cabanas, and a beach bar shaped like a boat serving items such as burgers and wraps. Wait staff will come by loungers to take orders. The staff diligently cleans seaweed away every day. Note that the beach is pretty short and ends abruptly at the Blue Marlin restaurant outpost.

Also on the downside, non-motorized water sports such as kayaks and snorkeling gear and not part of the all-inclusive resort, which is uncommon.

See More What's the Beach Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Features Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Top features include a stellar spa with extensive facilities and treatments, a fitness center, daily activities, and nightly entertainment.

The 20,000-square-foot Sanctuary Spa and fitness center offers treatment rooms, a juice bar, whirlpools, a steam room, sauna, bridal room in the beauty salon, and a private, half-moon-shaped pool in the spa's own interior courtyard. The fitness center has a good array of modern cardio machines and free weights. Fitness classes such as yoga and water aerobics are available, as are sports and games such as ping-pong, beach volleyball, horseshoe, and darts.

There's also a large meeting room inside the Castle, and several spots for weddings or events. Wedding packages are available.

The Sanctuary Town is a plaza of cafes and bars serving all-inclusive food, and nightly entertainment is provided here.

See More What Features Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Restaurants and Bars Are at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

As an all-inclusive resort, multiple restaurants and bars are covered by the room rate and offer a range of cuisines.

The Sanctuary Cap Cana is all-inclusive, so all food and drinks are covered in the room rate. Restaurants include buffet, Italian, steakhouse, and Asian cuisine, plus there are some bars and restaurants within Sanctuary Town, which are also covered by the all-inclusive package. Reservations aren’t required for any of the restaurants except Fusion in the Sanctuary Town and for seating at the teppanyaki bar in Wok. Room service is also available 24/7.

  • Wok is a Chinese restaurant floating over the Castle's moat.
  • Blue Marlin Bar occupies huts that sit over the ocean, and it serves seafood for lunch and dinner. This eatery is a highlight for many.
  • The Steakhouse, is an Argentinian grill that’s in a stand-alone building by the lobby.
  • Casabella is a buffet-style restaurant that serves international cuisine for breakfast and lunch.
  • Capriccio is an elegant Italian restaurant that’s open for dinner.

Multiple bars are on-site, including a casual piano bar in the lobby, an oceanfront bar exclusive to Castle guests, and a swim-up pool bar. A coffee shop in the lobby offers various beverages and pastries. International and national premium brand liquor is included. Some popular sprit and beer brands must be purchased however.

Some past guests have complained of a lack of variety and quality in terms of food and drinks.

See More What Restaurants and Bars Are at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Golf Courses Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

The nearby Punta Espada is arguably the best golf course in Punta Cana and one of the best in the Caribbean.

One of the Sanctuary's biggest assets is its easy access to Punta Espada Golf Club -- a par 72, 18-hole golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus that's immaculately groomed. The hotel maintains a fleet of golf carts that constantly circulate around the property, picking up guests and dropping them off at the course for free. The Teeth of the Dog course at the similarly ritzy Casa de Campo has been hailed as one of the Caribbean's most famous golf courses, but the course at the Sanctuary and other newer courses, like the one at the Puntacana Hotel, could provide some real competition.

See More What Golf Courses Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Things You Should Know About Sanctuary Cap Cana

Also Known As

  • Secrets Sanctuary Cap Cana
  • Sanctuary Cap Cana Hotel
  • Sanctuary Cap Cana Resort
  • Sanctuary Cap Cana
  • Sanctuary Cap Cana By AlSol

Room Types

  • Beach Front Premium Suite
  • Castle Junior Suite
  • Castle Junior Suite Oceanfront
  • Castle Junior Suite Swim-out
  • Castle Suite one bedroom
  • Honeymoon Suite w/ private pool
  • Imperial Suite
  • Island Suite
  • Junior Suite Ocean view
  • King & Queen Honeymoon Villa
  • Monarch Oceanfront Villa
  • Monarch Villa
  • Royalty Villa
  • Terrace Tower Suite

Address

Boulevard Zona Hotelera, Punta Cana 23000, Dominican Republic

Phone

(809) 544-4343

Website

Oyster Hotel Review

Sanctuary Cap Cana

What Are the Design and Scene Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

This romantic all-inclusive, adults-only luxury resort resembles a Spanish village thanks to multiple pools, a restaurant and shop plaza, and several pastel-colored buildings with red-tiled roofs.

Lovers of the Middle Ages, historic-looking sites, and remote, adults-only resorts will likely be enamored with the Sanctuary Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic’s private, gated Cap Cana community development. This all-inclusive hotel underwent extensive renovations in 2018-19 to add an additional 185 rooms and two towers, update the lobby, and refresh the expansive spa and fitness center. The hotel has gone back and forth on its kids’ policies and is entirely adults-only as of Dec. 2015. There are multiple buildings, giving the property the feel of a small village, and rooms are split into three different sections: Colonial, Castle, and Villas. The Castle tower is geographically separated from the bungalows and villas at the other end of the resort, and is around a five-minute walk from the main lobby and pool.

The striking property is filled with buildings painted in charming pale orange and yellow hues and topped by red tiles, well-manicured grounds housing palm trees, water features, and freeform pools, and chic wicker daybeds for lounging. The Castle tower is a standout for its jutting turrets, bridges over a moat (that doubles as a swimming pool for guests on the ground floor), and a central space with its own lobby. In the bowels of the Castle, hallways look onto a subterranean waterfall that fills a larimar-colored pool of water that looks like it could belong in some forgotten temple. They lead to an extensive spa area that has its own hidden interior courtyard with a half-moon pool and massage cabins. Due to the elevation, rooms here have a bird's-eye view of the cliff all the way to the shore. Fortunately, views of the lovely white-sand beach and beautiful blue Caribbean Sea in the distance are found throughout the resort.

The property feels like a little village, enhanced by the Sanctuary Town, a collection of cafes and bars that’s included in the generous all-inclusive package. Guests can be found at one of the several outdoor pools – though the main pool with a swim-up bar is a favorite – plus some have their own private pools and ocean-view outdoor terraces. Butler service is available for certain suite categories, adding to the property’s already luxe feel.

This is one of the best resorts in Punta Cana; in this price range, the smaller Zoetry Agua Punta Cana is another great option but lacks the golf course here. Other top options such as Eden Rock at Cap CanaTortuga Bay Hotel, and the The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real tend to cost more.

See More What Are the Design and Scene Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Where Is Sanctuary Cap Cana Located in Punta Cana?

Closer to the airport than the tourist epicenter of Bavaro, in the large, half-built Cap Cana development 

Sanctuary Cap Cana is located deep in the sprawling but semi-arrested Cap Cana community development, along a gorgeous white-sand beach. How far is Sanctuary Cap Cana from airport? It’s about a 15-minute drive from the Punta Cana International Airport and a 30-minute drive from the tourist town of Bavaro, the epicenter of most of Punta Cana’s resorts. To get to the hotel, guests must first drive past the initial Cap Cana security gate, then past long stretches of scrub and unoccupied residential and hotel properties on a well-maintained but badly signed road. The resort feels isolated from the rest of the of the Punta Cana community, which can be either a good thing or a bad thing, depending on what guests want from their vacations. 

Those who are happy lazing by the pool and small beach and eating at the several restaurants on-site will be perfectly fine here, but those looking to explore the local culture may feel a bit trapped at some point during their stay.

Be aware that you cannot drink the water in Punta Cana, but bottled water is part of the all-inclusive rate. For those asking "What are the best months to go to Dominican Republic?," consult our breakdown of the Best Time to Visit the Dominican Republic.

See More Where Is Sanctuary Cap Cana Located in Punta Cana?

What Are Rooms Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Beautiful suites are decked out in elegant, soft decor, and have jetted tubs, furnished outdoor spaces, and top-notch amenities; upgrades add ocean views.

There are 323 suites split into three sections -- the main Colonial section, the Castle, and the Villas. Decor varies a bit depending on the section, but most rooms have an elegant, light design consisting of beige marble flooring or light wood floors, white walls and linens, and wood furniture. Gold light fixtures, vibrant blue throw pillows, or exposed wood beam ceilings add character to the luxe, beachy rooms. All rooms have private outdoor spaces and most rooms have ocean views. Upgrades for private outdoor pools, hot tubs, and sunbeds facing the ocean are available. Swim-out suites are available on the ground floor of the Castle tower.

Decadent Honeymoon Suites are also located in the Castle section and have private plunge pools, in addition to butler service. The Monarch Villa looks right out onto the beach with a large porch area facing the sand. Luxury Junior Suite, Premium Junior Suite Ocean View, and Premium Luxury Junior Suite Ocean View are the newest units.

All rooms have impressive bathrooms with both showers and separate jetted tubs, 24-hour room service, walk-in closets with silky bathrobes, slippers, and safes, minibars refreshed daily, espresso machines, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Some suites have living rooms.

Butler service is available for guests in Luxury, Villa and Castle suites.

See More What Are Rooms Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Are Pools Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

There are multiple pools across the village-like property, including a beachfront option with a swim-up bar.

The Sanctuary has six swimming pools, though you might have to hunt around to find them. The most obvious is the large, lagoon-shaped infinity-edge pool overlooking the beach. Unlike at most all-inclusive resorts, the swim-up bar typically doesn't get too crowded. Apart from the hot tub at the end of the pool, there's another small wading pool (and "small" is a relative concept here) around the corner with a fountain along one end and even more lounge chairs for sunbathing.

The other pools are somewhat hidden. The moat around the Castle is also swimmable, and there’s another pool on the lobby level with fun hanging chairs, ocean views, and an adjacent bar for snacks and beverages. There's also a rectangular, medium-size infinity pool overlooking the main lagoon pool.

Poolside drink service is available and there are ample lounge chairs. Additionally, poolside activities and games sometimes take place.

See More What Are Pools Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What's the Beach Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

The beautiful beach has white sand abutting the pretty water, plus ample loungers and a snack bar.

Sanctuary Cap Cana has a wide white-sand beach that gently slopes into the clear ocean. There are plenty of lounge chairs, cabanas, and a beach bar shaped like a boat serving items such as burgers and wraps. Wait staff will come by loungers to take orders. The staff diligently cleans seaweed away every day. Note that the beach is pretty short and ends abruptly at the Blue Marlin restaurant outpost.

Also on the downside, non-motorized water sports such as kayaks and snorkeling gear and not part of the all-inclusive resort, which is uncommon.

See More What's the Beach Like at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Features Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Top features include a stellar spa with extensive facilities and treatments, a fitness center, daily activities, and nightly entertainment.

The 20,000-square-foot Sanctuary Spa and fitness center offers treatment rooms, a juice bar, whirlpools, a steam room, sauna, bridal room in the beauty salon, and a private, half-moon-shaped pool in the spa's own interior courtyard. The fitness center has a good array of modern cardio machines and free weights. Fitness classes such as yoga and water aerobics are available, as are sports and games such as ping-pong, beach volleyball, horseshoe, and darts.

There's also a large meeting room inside the Castle, and several spots for weddings or events. Wedding packages are available.

The Sanctuary Town is a plaza of cafes and bars serving all-inclusive food, and nightly entertainment is provided here.

See More What Features Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Restaurants and Bars Are at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

As an all-inclusive resort, multiple restaurants and bars are covered by the room rate and offer a range of cuisines.

The Sanctuary Cap Cana is all-inclusive, so all food and drinks are covered in the room rate. Restaurants include buffet, Italian, steakhouse, and Asian cuisine, plus there are some bars and restaurants within Sanctuary Town, which are also covered by the all-inclusive package. Reservations aren’t required for any of the restaurants except Fusion in the Sanctuary Town and for seating at the teppanyaki bar in Wok. Room service is also available 24/7.

  • Wok is a Chinese restaurant floating over the Castle's moat.
  • Blue Marlin Bar occupies huts that sit over the ocean, and it serves seafood for lunch and dinner. This eatery is a highlight for many.
  • The Steakhouse, is an Argentinian grill that’s in a stand-alone building by the lobby.
  • Casabella is a buffet-style restaurant that serves international cuisine for breakfast and lunch.
  • Capriccio is an elegant Italian restaurant that’s open for dinner.

Multiple bars are on-site, including a casual piano bar in the lobby, an oceanfront bar exclusive to Castle guests, and a swim-up pool bar. A coffee shop in the lobby offers various beverages and pastries. International and national premium brand liquor is included. Some popular sprit and beer brands must be purchased however.

Some past guests have complained of a lack of variety and quality in terms of food and drinks.

See More What Restaurants and Bars Are at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

What Golf Courses Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

The nearby Punta Espada is arguably the best golf course in Punta Cana and one of the best in the Caribbean.

One of the Sanctuary's biggest assets is its easy access to Punta Espada Golf Club -- a par 72, 18-hole golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus that's immaculately groomed. The hotel maintains a fleet of golf carts that constantly circulate around the property, picking up guests and dropping them off at the course for free. The Teeth of the Dog course at the similarly ritzy Casa de Campo has been hailed as one of the Caribbean's most famous golf courses, but the course at the Sanctuary and other newer courses, like the one at the Puntacana Hotel, could provide some real competition.

See More What Golf Courses Are Available at Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Balcony / Terrace / Patio

  • Basic Television

  • Beach

  • Beauty / Hair Salon

  • Business Center

  • Cabanas

  • Cable

  • Concierge

  • Dry Cleaning

  • Fitness Center

  • Free Breakfast

  • Golf Course

  • Internet

  • Laundry

  • Meeting / Conference Rooms

  • Pool

  • Poolside Drink Service

  • Room Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Smoking Rooms Available

  • Spa

  • Swim-Up Bar

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.