Luxury All Inclusive Resorts in St Lucia
It’s been just over two weeks since I returned from my latest travel adventure to Now Larimar Punta Cana in Dominican Republic. It was actually my first time in the Caribbean and I have to say it was amazing – definitely one of my favourite holidays!!
To kick off my adventure I flew from London Gatwick to Punta Cana with British Airways. The flight wasn’t too bad; it was roughly 8.5 hours. I slept for most of the journey as there wasn’t a great deal to do onboard the 777. I hope that British Airways upgrade their fleet flying to the Dominican Republic so it reflects the level of service that is present in the hotels, as this part of my holiday was most disappointing.
When we landed into Punta Cana airport it looked very authentic with its straw roof, we went through the immigration control before being whisked away to our resort in a private transfer.
Top tip: Purchase your travel cards from the Dominican Republic Embassy before you arrive to avoid long queues.
When it comes to choosing a resort, word of mouth is always best. My colleagues recommended AM Resorts and after doing my research on TripAdvisor and discussing with my husband, we decided Now Larimar Punta Cana would be the perfect choice for us. It’s Unlimited-Luxury, perfect location and choice of 9 fantastic restaurants made it a clear winner in our eyes.
From the moment we arrived everything was so surreal. We were greeted with cold towels and shown to the Preferred Check-In desks, where we were met with a smiling Laurent who made us feel right at home which is exactly what we needed as jetlag had us hit hard. We were then shown around the resort and taken to our room by the lovely Genessis.
When we first got to our room there was a banner across the door saying ‘Happy Anniversary’, upon entering we were met with fresh fruit, a bottle of rum and a note saying that we had a bottle of sparkling wine being cooled for us, this was such a lovely surprise as we were celebrating our second anniversary. We originally booked the Preferred Club Tropical Deluxe room but were upgraded to the Partial Ocean View which was amazing as we could watch the sunrise over the ocean every morning from our large balcony.
The room also had a king size bed (which was massive!!), a daily refreshed mini-bar with soft drinks, juices, water and beer, a flat screen TV, free Wi-Fi and a whirlpool on the terrace which was very romantic.
Being Preferred Club it gave us access to the Castaway’s restaurant which was open for breakfast and lunch. We ate here every morning as it overlooked the beach and not to mention the food was great especially the churros and biscuits, the perfect start to the day!
When we weren’t exploring this beautiful country, we enjoyed lunch at either the Preferred Club Lounge or Barefoot Grill. The Preferred Club Lounge had a fully-stocked bar with all the fine liquors and hot and cold snacks. This was a great place to socialise with other guests or grab a quick bite to eat before heading out on an excursion.
Barefoot Grill was on the beach just outside of the Preferred club pool, serving meaty burgers, hotdogs and grilled chicken.
Of an evening, we dined in all the restaurants except Mercure, French cuisine. Our favourite restaurant had to be Bluewater Grill, we ate here on our first night and went back again and again. The food was mouth-watering, especially the steak and fries combined with the steak sauce! The grill had a real American feel about it, the décor certainly added to the experience.
Our second favourite restaurant was Tamarindo, serving Mexican cuisine. From the appetiser to dessert, the food was authentic and presented well. I would say that this restaurant had the most flavoursome food, a real taste sensation.
Another amazing restaurant was Spice, a Pan-Asian fusion with Teppanyaki. The show was great, the chef made it very entertaining and the food was stunning. The chef was highly skilled in the art and you could tell he was experienced. It made for a great evening. You can eat here a la carte too.
Top tip: You need to make a reservation for the Teppanyaki show as it does get busy. Shows start on the hour every hour from 6pm.
An added extra to Now Larimar Punta Cana is that you have full access to Now Garden Punta Cana next door, this includes their Italian restaurant, Capers.
All the restaurant staff were very attentive and the level of service was exceptional. Henrry, the restaurant manager was particularly attentive, he always welcomed us and ensured we were happy.
The resort has 4 swimming pools, one large main pool with a swim-up bar, a kid’s pool and two Preferred Club pools.
The main pool had entertainment during the daytime, the entertainment was okay. Personally, I felt that the entertainment team weren’t up to the same standard as the rest of the resort staff. But, there was plenty of other activities to keep busy. We had beach volleyball, archery, table tennis, tennis courts as well as water sports including Hobie-Cat, kayaking, paddle boarding, sailing and more.
The beach is one of the best in Dominican Republic, situated on Bavaro Beach. Every morning the beach would be combed and the seaweed collected.
At points in the day there was a lot of seaweed washed up but it’s just nature and couldn’t be helped, it didn’t stop us from going into the sea though. One of the days, we were able to relax in one of the beach cabanas where we had a waiter, Robinson, who made sure our drinks and ice was always topped up. His service was impeccable and made our beach day perfect.
The days that we weren’t in the beach cabana, we spent on the sun loungers in the Preferred section of the beach. There were always waiters around the beach and pools ready to take your drink order.
Top tip: The beach cabanas must be purchased from concierge, with prices from $100 per cabana. This includes butler service for a la carte lunch, drink service and a 5 minutes couple massage. There are only 4 cabanas so I would recommend booking one early on to avoid disappointment.
The spa was lovely, a real sanctuary. The gardens were beautiful and the sounds of the birds and water put you into a state of tranquillity.
We had our couples massage early in the morning when it wasn’t too hot. The massage itself was amazing, very relaxing and one of the best massages I have had so far. Once our massage had finished we were then guided along the water ritual, which consisted of the sauna, steam room and cold bucket shower. Once we had completed this water ritual we then moved on to a dip into freezing cold water, followed by a water jet massage and finishing with the Jacuzzi. Once this was all finished we resided to our cabana where we enjoyed herbal teas and fruit.
Overall, our holiday to the Dominican Republic was incredible! The weather was perfect, staying around 30˚C every day. The resort was great and the staff made it even better. I would definitely recommend Now Larimar Punta Cana to those looking for a family-friendly all-inclusive getaway.
Enquire with us today, with prices from £1199 per person for 7 nights in a Deluxe Room, flights and private transfers.