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at the Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve
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What beach vacation dreams are made of
Oct 12th, 2020
My husband and I visited in October 2020 for four days and had the best time! Can’t wait to go back. Details below: COVID safety protocols: All in all we felt safe on the property. Hotel requires you to provide your travel entry submission confirmation from the Puerto Rican government (which requires you to take a PCR test within 72 hours of departure for PR). Staff took everyone’s temperature upon check-in. All staff and guests are required to wear masks in common areas except on the beach (but the beach was not usually crowded and groups generally stayed far away from one another so that was okay). Staff: Staff went above and beyond to take care of us including giving us a tour of the property to make sure we don’t get lost; picking us up on a golf cart when we eventually did get lost walking to dinner; getting us two freshly cracked coconuts when we asked for one; offering us a delicious popsicle upon check-in; leaving a ziploc bag for our toiletries on the sink during turndown service on our last night; etc etc. Every guest is provided an ambassador who responds to all your questions and requests via text within a few minutes (so much more frictionless than calling; wonder why more hotels don’t do this). The service truly exceeded that of many other 5-star luxury hotels we had been to. Huge thank-you to the whole staff for warmly welcoming us and making our stay a memorable one! Property: Amazingly beautiful and perfectly-maintained property with a gorgeous private beach (West Beach). The only downside I can think of is how expansive the property is, so if you don’t have a golf cart you’ll need to plan for some walking or call your ambassador ahead of time for pickup. Room: We stayed on a first-floor room with a private pool and direct access to West Beach. Could not have asked for a better room than this. The outdoor shower, ocean view, beach access, soaking tub, walk-in closet, comfortable sheets (from a brand I hadn’t heard of before called Fili D’oro) all made me wish I could stay here forever. The only downside is we were nextdoor to a unit where a group of guests decided to blast loud pop music every night from their deck while karaoke-ing off-key, which made hanging out in our private pool less appealing. Location: Reasonably easy to reach from San Juan Airport (I think it took 40 min or so by taxi). You can hail an Uber from the airport, but for some reason you can’t get picked up from the property (even if you try an alternate pickup point slightly off-property). As a result, if you want to go off-property to say, explore other parts of PR, you have to plan ahead and arrange through the hotel. Because this was such an hassle, my husband and I just decided to stay in the resort the entire time we were there (which was fine for us, but something to keep in mind). Things to do: I spent most of my time hanging out on West Beach and swimming or enjoying beachside cocktails / complimentary coco frios (freshly cracked coconuts) that came out at 2pm everyday. West Beach is extremely safe thanks to a wall of rocks that had been placed there by the Rockefellers at some point. However it is not great for water sports (better to go to the east side, which is also accessible from the property) or snorkeling (better to go to another part of PR or maybe a neighboring island). Spa Botanico is supposed to be stellar but I didn’t get a chance to try it. There is a 4-mile Rockefeller Trail for walking/running which is nice (follow the blue arrows on the ground to avoid accidentally going off-trail). There’s also golf course on the property. Of course you can also go to the concierge to arrange activities like helicopter tours and Bio Bay kayaking and such (note that resort-arranged activities usually cost some multiple of what a comparable tour costs if you booked it yourself through e.g. TripAdvisor or aviator but if you’re staying at the Dorado, you are probably not planning a budget vacation anyway). Food: We had breakfast every morning at Positivo. Highly recommend the chicken sausage (get it as a side), the smoothie, and the French toast (not usually a French toast fan but wow this blew my mind). We also had dinner at Encanto and Melao. I would definitely recommend Encanto over Melao because (1) Encanto was right by the beach whereas Melao overlooked the golf course or something and (2) Encanto’s seafood game was really strong; highly recommend the gambas al ajillo and the lobster. Food is not cheap at any of the restaurants but also not outrageous (compared to other places we’ve been to like the Park Hyatt Maldives, where a single entree averaged about $80). Recommend booking dinner reservations early since they tend to get booked up pretty quickly. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Aug 23rd, 2020
10 STARS! My fiance / wife and I stayed here in early August of 2020 and we just can't say enough about how amazing this resort experience was for us. The short version is that this hidden gem (1 of 4 in the world) was so over-the-top beautiful and romantic that my fiance and I decided to extend our stay and get married here!! The longer version is below... About the resort itself, much of it is open air from the reception area to the restaurants to the rooms themselves. During our stay we took advantage of the boutique shops, library, Spa (where we got married), the outdoor restaurant "Positivo" (the nicest people you will ever meet), the beach, and the complimentary bikes for exploring the property. The pools looked absolutely refreshing and inviting, but sadly were closed to guests because of COVID. This wasn't an issue however as our room came with its own private pool. We stayed in one of the ground floor suites (approx ~1200 sq ft) which included 1.5 baths, dual vanity sink, a large soaking tub, and an indoor and outdoor shower. The oversized living room included an L-Shaped couch, a personal desk space, a wet bar w/mini fridge, and a dining room table. The bedroom itself was very large with a corner sitting area, a walk-in closet, and a separate dressing area. Both the living room and bedroom came equipped with plenty of storage and oversized pocket doors leading right out to the covered outdoor patio. The patio included a large dining table and a couple of lounge chairs. From the patio is the private in ground infinity pool measuring the entire width of the unit making it perfect for two people to swim laps and float around without bumping into each other. From the pool was a large green space for lounging and laying out. From the green space was our sandy pathway leading directly out to the beach and beautiful blue ocean water (no more than 20 steps). In all honesty, we rarely felt the need to leave our "mini-apt" as everything you'd expect or want was right there for us (private pool, beach, view, etc.). Plus, each guest is assigned an Embajador who makes it their mission to ensure everything you need is taken care of. Even if you haven't thought about something, he or she will take care of it for you!! We want to give a HUGE shout out to the resort staff who, without question, went above and beyond to make our stay and impromptu wedding ceremony extremely effortless and special. Tara was our wedding coordinator who facilitated all of the logistics and details from scouting locations on property, finding our professional photographer and officiant, and was even gracious enough to record our ceremony live at the Spa Botanico so we could stream it to all of our close family and friends back on the mainland. If you're looking to plan an event on property, seek out Tara! She is the best! Miguel was our Embajador who just stood out to us and was extremely professional, warm, and thorough. His attentiveness to us throughout our stay made us feel like we had absolutely nothing to worry about. If you can, request Miguel and I guarantee you won't regret it. And last, but not least, Marlon, Arelis, and Pepe are THE MOST INCREDIBLE people you will ever meet. They are part of the incredible Positivo restaurant team who showed us every day what a 10 star Ritz-Carlton-Reserve experience is all about. We can not thank them enough for everything they did to go out of their way to ensure we were taken care of and for going above and beyond is making our wedding ceremony (before, during, and after) just so incredibly unforgettable. We are truly grateful for their warm and generous hospitality. PLEASE ask for them during your dining experience at the restaurant! We cannot wait to get back and visit the property and see everyone again. We LOVE IT HERE! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Safest Vacation Ever
Jul 29th, 2020
We arrived on July 14 - the day before the original "official" reopening of the island and stayed for 5 nights. We were initially a little worried about safety, but as soon as we arrived, we realized we had worried too much. The resort has the HIGHEST safety standard I've ever seen. Temperature checks upon entry, masks worn by ALL employee and guests (enforced), extra disinfecting of rooms daily, and half-capacity meant that if you don't want to be near others, you will not be. Everything was open (beach, pool, restaurants except COA) for the first 4 days, before a last-minute governor order closed the pool again. Words cannot describe the beauty of the resort. From the rooms, the pools, food, and service, everything was impeccable. Due to the capacity restriction, many times we found ourselves to be the only ones in the resort, which was fantastic and truly a once-in-lifetime opportunity. One person who made our experiences extra special was Marlow at Positivo. Not only was his warm and friendly presence comforting, but he went above and beyond EVERY morning making sure our breakfast experience was positive. Marlow is the person who made this experience 6-stars, and the same quality can be found in many other resort staff. We want to thank everyone from Dorado Beach for the opportunity to stay at the resort in this unique and challenging time. For those of you who are thinking about it, book now. The experience will last a lifetime. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Jul 21st, 2020
Dorado Beach is breathtaking and every bit of this resort is top notch. Unfortunately we were only able to enjoy 2 nights of our scheduled stay before Puerto Rico shut down for the pandemic. Despite this the staff and hotel were beyond accommodating in helping us get back home quickly and fully refunding the days we chose not to stay. During our quick stay we enjoyed each of the restaurants and our kids spent several hours in a cooking activity at the kids club which had them making organic pizzas using a solar oven. We rode our bikes all over the resort which was one of our favorite things to do. The restaurants, beaches and spa have me dreaming of the day we can return to enjoy the resort more fully. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Lovely hotel with high quality service
Jul 18th, 2020
We went here with our family post-COVID. The rooms are very spacious, overlooking the beach, nicely appointed. The grounds are lovely, there is some nice golf and a small water park in an adjacent area, accessible to hotel guests, for free. The service is very good, always prompt, everyone is extremely accommodating and friendly. As guests, we had the use of a “butler” who you text. I found this service very helpful and efficient. The two beaches are nice, and even though they are artificially created, the sand is lovely and the water blue. However, these are not typical Caribbean coral reef beaches and there is really no snorkeling. There is good service at the beach with free water bottles and drinks and snacks. The food is excellent and reasonably priced compared to the pricing of the resort. However, there is only one restaurant open Mon-Wed and the service at the restaurants is slow and disorganized. The two pools get crowded over the weekends with a lot of local people coming from San Juan. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
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