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Hotel VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort Hotel 5 star
Easyexperts
Playa Dorada Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

Gran Ventana is one of Playa Dorada's largest and busiestall-inclusive resorts. Located in Puerto Plata north of the country, it is right on the beach and has all the facilities guests used to this type of hotel can expect and modest but clean rooms and very average food even at the à la carte restaurants. Lively in the evenings, the hotel is ideal for a wide-ranging clientele, from groups of friends to families with young children on a budget.

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    • Hotel VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort

      VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort   -   © Julien Ferret / EASYVOYAGE

    • Hotel VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort

      VH Gran Ventana Beach Resort   -   © Julien Ferret / EASYVOYAGE

       
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    Location 6.75 /10

    The resort is located right on the beach in the resort area of Playa Dorada in the Puerto Plata province a 10-minute drive from the city of Puerto Plata. Close to a golf course, shopping centre and nightclub, this hotel is ideal for guests wanting to get involved in lots of activities and nightlife.

    Accommodation 7.45 /10

    In total there are 506 rooms at the resort varying between superior rooms and junior suites in three accommodation blocks of two storeys. The rooms are very modest and all have the same décor but are very clean. Salmon pink tiled floors, a striped orange and yellow back wall, and flimsy white curtains with an orange and brown flower print. All rooms have balconies with partial sea views. Although the rooms are fairly plain, they are spacious and will allow for an extra bed or two for families with young children. Otherwise all rooms have a flat-screen television, a safe (extra charge), mini-bar (water, beer and fizzy drinks are included in the all-inclusive package). Some rooms are connecting. The bathrooms al have bath tubs and VH Hotel amenities. The junior suites are a lot more spacious that the superior rooms, and have a coffee maker.

    Overview 7.45 /10

    The central cluster of activity is around the main pool area, where guests will also find the main restaurant, amphitheatre for evening shows, sports activity centre, and reception. The accommodation is located behind the pool area closer to the beach in concrete two-storey blocks with small grassy courtyards in the centre.

    Open in 1998, the hotel has been very well maintained and is of a good all-round standard. In terms of facilities, there are two pools - the main pool has music and an entertainment team carrying out various activities in the area throughout the day and the second pool, which is located a little out of the way, is the designated quiet area. In total the hotel has three restaurants (two à la carte) and five bars (including two pool bars). There is a kids' club, tennis court, amphitheatre close to the pool for shows in the evenings, complimentary Wi-Fi internet and a gym (there is no spa, although guests do get a discount to use the spa at Casa Colonial, Gran Ventana's upmarket sister hotel). A pleasant palm tree garden separates the hotel from the beach.

    Food and drink 7.45 /10

    There are three restaurants in total, the main buffet restaurant and two à la carte, all of which are included in the all-inclusive formula. The quality of the food is fairly low, however, the price of a stay here matches the quality. Even the food at the Italian à la carte restaurant is questionable - wine connoisseurs should avoid the house wine at all costs. The buffet restaurant serves the general international mix of fare with different live cooking stations. There is no room service at the resort.

    Spa

    There is no spa at the Gran Ventana, but guests get a discount to use the spa at its 5-star sister hotel, Casa Colonial also in the area.

    Beach 7.70 /10

    The hotel is right on the beach and it's just like on the postcards - expect warm turquoise waters lined by golden sands. The beach here is clean and is public, like all beaches in the country, so don't be surprised by hawkers selling various items along the strip. As this is the most popular holiday spot in the province, expect there to be constant water sport activities going on. Security here is something important as a minority used to create problems for tourists - hotels on the beach have round-the-clock security watching the beach to avoid any problems. It's worth noting that if you walk east along the beach, you will be stopped at a certain point by a security guard. Tourists have restricted access along the beach.

    To know

    The Gran Ventana is part of the VH Hotels group, a local company, which also operates the upmarket Casa Colonial also in Puerto Plata.

    Equipment

    • Car park
    • Handicap access
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      massage, beauty salon, sauna, keep fit, spa

    • Swimming pool
    • Sports equipment

      tennis, water skiing, gym, aqua gym, golf, mountain bike, jet ski, sailing, water-polo, fitness, sports

    • Hairdresser
    • Safe
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • Guests looking for a lively family oriented place to stay will appreciate a stay here.
    • Located right on the beach.

    disadvantages

    • No spa.
    • The quality of the food, even at the à la carte restaurants is questionable.

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10
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