Apple Vacations Traveller Reviews
IFA Villas Bavaro Punta Cana
Not a luxurious at all, disappointed with food and amenities (which were few). Used Apple Vacations before and was impressed, but for this second trip I was annoyed Apple did not specify there was construction at the resort and lied that we were on the beach. Even Apple Rep at hotel said we were in a terrible hotel. Thanks for the head's up.
An economical vacation without alot of frills
IFA Villas is a great place to stay if you do not want 5-star service. The hotel rooms are nice and the maids were so friendly and polite. The grounds within the resort are nice. I didn't realize, when I booked that you'd have to take a buggy/shuttle to the beach or walk. It was only a few minutes away, but I wish I would have known that. My only complaints are as follows: I booked a king-bed room, which we got 2 double beds and never could get them to change that. If you wanted to eat at the nicer restaurants, you had to stand in line before 8:00 to get a reservation when the desk opened at 8:30. My worst complaint was the flies!! They are everywhere in full force! It made eating at the buffets difficult. They were doing remodeling down by the beach on one of the restaurants, so they lost water in the bathrooms for the day. That was bad! Beyond the flies, the food is good. However, we were hoping to have fresh chips and pico de galo/salsa on the buffets, which they never had. Real bummer!! Had an AWESOME massage by Veronica-loved her!! We did a few excursions during our stay. We booked them through the resort. The transport to the catamaran's and island were very long. The resort is geared for Spanish speaking people, so we couldn't go to any of the entertainment in the evenings because we do not speak Spanish. That was a bummer. Overall, this vacation was very cheap through Apple and it was a good week. The weather wasn't so great, so I'm glad the bars were accommodating!
We were more than pleased with our week at IFA Villas Bavaro. The beach was beautiful, the room was clean and comfortable, and the staff (in general) made us feel welcome. We were especially impressed by the bar staff at the Margarita bar. What a personable and entertaining group! We had some good meals at the ala cart restaurants, and the buffet was more than adequate, especially the breakfasts highlighted by some of the best bread we ever ate. (Those big slices can't be beat.) Maybe the overall was a tick below a 5 star we visited last year, but the value was amazing at less than two thirds of the price. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this resort to anyone. One other thing of interest was the wide variety of languages we heard. People from all over the world were there. Obviously the mail language of the staff is Spanish, and some speak English better than others, but don't forget that it is their language and their country. I really think it helps to try to use whatever Spanish one is capable of. I think the staff appreciates that. One more thing. I truly believe that the excellent room we got was a direct result of booking through Apple. Thanks, Apple.
We had a blast at IFA Villas Bavaro! The staff were always nice, helpful and spoke good English. Our room was always clean and in the perfect location on the resort (near one of the pools and a 3 min walk to the beach).
It was a perfect vacation! There were a couple of minor things I wish could've been better!
Loved the resort, very nice, very clean, friendly people and beautiful! However we asked for King beds in 2 of our 3 rooms, and that didn't happen...which really stunk for 2 of the couples on our trip. The waiting in line for reservations every morning was RIDICULOUS...it meant we couldn't sleep in AT ALL. The line began forming at 7:30 and if you weren't in line by 8:15 you were basically screwed for a decent, if at all, reservation for a sit down meal. They didn't start taking them until 8:30, so we learned early in week to plan on being in line for at least 45 minutes to an hour. That really stunk! And we ALWAYS complain about cigarettes smoking. This was the first resort, however, that didn't have designated smoking areas, so there was no avoiding it. Despite those minor things we had a blast!
Me parece que para ser un resort no tiene las comodidades necesarias, la actitud de los trabajadores era súper pésima, les molestaba que les preguntases algo. Para ir a los restaurantes a la carta tienes que hacer reserva y nunca hay, solo puedes reservar de 7am a 11am de los 5 días que estuve solo pude ir un día, al japonés y la comida fue borrosa. La comida del bufete era espantosa. El bar de la piscina cierra a las 6 pm y los tragos no se pueden tomar saben a jarabe. La verdad que muy mala experiencia. No tiene servicio de habitaciones. No te limpian la habitación solo hacen la cama, no te cambian las toallas. Dicen que tienen free wifi en dos zonas del hotel y en ninguna de las dos funciona. Muy pésimo.
IFA is a very comfortable hotel. The buffet is decent, and the menu changes daily. It is open at convenient times. The pizza/grill is also open at very convenient times - whenever I came back late from the bars/clubs, this is the only restaurant that is open, and they have pretty good burgers and fries available. All 3 restaurants that require reservation for dinner are excellent. Make sure to call or visit guest services early on the day you would like to book because slots go fast. If you have excursions scheduled and are unable to make it, you can book the night before, just show your receipt. Nightly entertainment at the theatro was fun (10-11pm) - dancers are great and have good energy. Lots of good crowd participation. Different show every night. Unlimited drinks at the bar are great, especially in the pool. Go for the mamajuana shots and the cocoloco drinks - the local favorites. Staff is extremely friendly and helpful. Most speak little to moderate amounts of english - if you speak some spanish, it is easier to get by, but the staff is always friendly, polite, and professional and try their best to accommodate you. Especially loved Emmanuel at the front desk (night shift), Carlos in guest services, and Junior and another very nice bar tender whose name I can't remember but he played Romeo Santos music for me at the Jacuzzi per my request because it was too quiet! Disco Fantasy was fun too. I went earlier in the night and there wasn't a lot of people yet (11pm-2am); but from what I heard from other guests, it becomes more fun after 2 AM. Overall had a great stay and would recommend!
Pretty resort poor service
The resort was very pretty and our room was very comfortable. The man cleaning our room did a great job and was friendly as was some of the bar staff. Luis from Apple tours was helpful the first two days but then he disappeared without warning. There was another Apple tour person for a day but for the rest of the trip we had no one. We weren't helped with our trip out of the resort. The people working the desk at the resort were invariably rude to guests as were some of the people working in restaurants. We also were harassed constantly by people selling within the resort.
Was wishing for a better experience....
While the rain season is something you cannot avoid, there were a number of glitches during our trip- ones that really shouldn't have happened. Details as follows:
1. We lost power at the hotel for the larger part of an entire morning (Monday).
2. Our dinner reservations for El Caribe restaurant were mixed up (at Guest Services). As such, we had to make alternative plans. The customer service component of this mishap/experience was disappointing. The staff in this particular restaurant were not helpful, ushered us away from the restaurant, and made us go back to Guest Services to inquire as to what happened. In doing so, we were unable to find said gentleman, who come to find out- was on dinner.
3. The 12-18 inches of water we received on the Monday of our trip flooded the pool, shut down all outdoor entertainment, and unfortunately, the hotel offered nothing indoors to do (i.e. a recreation room/building).
4. Our television went out.
5. We could never access the Wi-Fi hot spots (labeled as free)- even in the designated areas.
6. We lost hot water within the bathroom of the hotel for at least two days (showering concerns).
7. It was difficult to hear some of the entertainers throughout the day, since a significant part of the resort was under construction (new buildings).
8. We had to discard of our own garbage, and find our own supplies (towels and toilet paper).
While there were a number of concerns we had on the negative side of the scale, the experience also came with several other benefits. Those who did not fully speak the English language went out of their way to find someone who could fully communicate with you, if you needed something. The performers were great (evening theater experience). The wait staff at the hotel were great- they ran a well-oiled machine, were friendly and courteous, and really seemed to enjoy their roles. They made you feel welcome, and they cracked jokes with you, and many went out of their way to help you make the most out of the experience.
This place is not for Americans... caters to europeans
We were grossly disappointed in our choice of this hotel. The food was the same every single day and was disgusting. By the end of the week we all had lost weight. My husband and I love wine and were disappointed in the fact that the wine was served out of a turpentine jug.. not kidding. They have four specialty restaurants but in order to get into the restaurants you have to call ahead at 9 AM in the morning or wait in line in the lobby with 100 people deep . Completely ridiculous . Our TV broke on Tuesday it took four days to fix it because no one could speak English and kept blaming it on a satellite problem ! My family has traveled all throughout the Caribbean Mexico and have never experienced a disappointment like this place. The only positive I can say is the hotel was kept clean and the beach is beautiful but they seaweed is bad!
Apart from the maid service this was a excellent hotel to stay at very clean staff very friendly just getting a extra towel was
Hard other than that it's a great hotel.
TripAdvisor Traveller Reviews
An enjoyable budget trip
My wife and I stayed here for our honeymoon last year in June. Overall our trip was a pleasant one. When we arrived we had about a two hour wait before our room was ready so we were asked to leave our luggage in the lobby and we could go the lunch buffet and explore the resort. The food was nice and the pool wasnâ€™t too crowed. Yes there was construction going on at the time at the resort but it wasnâ€™t too much of a problem. I came down with food poisoning from the Italian restaurant which was concerning but I donâ€™t blame the resort for that personally. The food overall was really good, the staff was kind and helpful, the beaches are beautiful. And the in room coffee is surprisingly good too! I wish I could remember what it was!
Had to switch resorts
My friends and I planned a getaway trip together to what we thought sounded like a beautiful resort. We arrived there to find no tourists and all locals. The resort is undergoing many renovations, so the amount of local workers present was extreme. However, there were no/little employees at the desk/in the lobby. The few employees in the lobby were rude and we constantly felt like we were being talked about. Many amenities and attractions that are advertised are actually closed. For example, restaurants and snack bars. The food was terrible, drinks tasted like rubbing alcohol, two out of the three pools were closed, and we could not walk to the beach from our hotel room. There is 2 golf carts for the entire resort to transport guests to and from the beach, which meant a 15 minute or more wait. I did not feel safe here, nor did my friends, so we had to unfortunately move resorts. We only stayed st the hotel a few hours, but that was even too long. Do not stay here, at least until after renovations are completed.
after reading the reviews, i was a little nervous about going. we upgraded to a renovated room ,which was very clean, new and comfortable, the food was quite good at the buffett, spent alot of time in the pool and beach,and the food at the pizza place(chicken strips and fries) and pizza, at least 6 different kinds, always hot and available never had to wait for food. the cafe was nice and quite for sitting in the morning for coffee and free internet. didnt go to the a la cartes because you can only book from 830am til 1030 am and people were lined up at 7 am . beach was a little to noisey some times ,always something going on ,alot of party boats . The beach buffettt also was good with fries ,chicken, burgers, hot dogs, excellent waiters in the buffett . had 2 ,1 and 1/2 litres of water in room daily, in fridge, there is alot of construction, but we knew that. The ride to the beach is fun with the drivers! overall the place is under construction but there are more good things about this place that make up for it. had an excellent time!
Really clean & well maintained, great food!
I definitely recommend this resort. It was my first time to the Dominican, but I have been to other all inclusives.
ROOMS: The resort really DOES look like the photos from the website, I never had an issue with cleanliness at all. Our room was gorgeous, and because it's villa style, it's very quiet. Always given bottled water in our fridge. You can pay for a key to a safe (not expensive)
FOOD: Really good, and there was a lot of variety (even for a picky eater). Always fresh, I never got sick. Dominican & American food available.
BEACH & POOLS: The swimming area at the beach was so-so, because it dropped off so quickly (not great for kiddies to play in) but the beach was gorgeous and always 9/10 clean of seaweed and garbage. I went over spring break (March 2018) and it was surprisingly quiet. We never had to fight for a chair at the pools or beach. Pools were cleaned every day.
STAFF: The staff don't speak a lot of english, but they are kind, friendly and the service was excellent.
My only complaints: There wasn't much on the resort for activities. They have them posted, but if they don't get enough interest, they don't do them (ie yoga, water aerobics, volleyball, games by the pool, etc). It's also a large resort, so there is a lot of walking on stone walkway. I don't recommend for anyone with a cane or walker etc. The beach is a long walk, and they are in the middle of some construction, but there are shuttles to drive you from A to B, and they come often. This didn't bother me in the slightest, but it might annoy some people. They say there's free wifi, that's a lie. But who needs wifi on vacation anyway??
IFA Villas Bavaro Vacation from snow
We checked in in record time and then were left standing in the lobby with no idea where to go. First impressions were not good and this carried on throughout our 7 day stay.
The staff are generally unwelcoming. We felt like we were a nuisance to bar staff, wait staff, reception, â€śguest servicesâ€ť etc etc.
The food was a major disappointment. The first night was so bad my husband had only dessert. We were hopeful it would improve sadly it did not. Simple food like fruit, yogurt and salad were great. The sourdough bread was fantastic especially toasted but you need power to use the toaster. Meaning we experienced several power outages and a region wide water outage.
Also, if youâ€™re looking for cocktails that contain alcohol I had to ask for that and I swear the booze is watered down. If you dare to drink a vodka on ice for example, be prepared, youâ€™re not in Kansas anymore. Itâ€™s what I imagine anti freeze tastes like.
People smoke everywhere too. Restaurants have ashtrays on the table same at the bar and poolside.
We are ready to go home today and are waiting for our shuttle.
We will not be back. Having said all this, it was wonderful to have some sun, sand and swimming and relaxation.
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