Bottom line: I might go back; my top three criteria (great beach, grounds, room) were met or exceeded, but some of the drawbacks keep me from saying I would go back.
I wouldn't avoid a destination solely based on the inconsistent quality of the food but there are so many all inclusives to choose from that I will probably try a different one in hopes that I could have it all (great beach, grounds, and room, plus good food and service)
BEACH: Beautiful! Endless white sand, blue water, no rocks, lots of palm trees of various heights for shade. You can walk for miles on the beach if you want to.
GROUNDS: Lovely and well-maintained! Curvy paths, mature landscaping, many varieties of foliage, attractive buildings
ROOM: Renovated and spacious! Comfortable bed, flat screen TV, nice balcony, gorgeous bathroom. Plenty of space for king bed and a rollaway bed for our son; and we could still walk around.
BUTâ€¦BATHROOM NOT FUNCTIONAL: Toilet, double sinks, Jacuzzi tub/shower combo all in one room separated from bedroom by frosted glass; I prefer more privacy with my spouse and definitely not good for a family or friends sharing a room. The unacceptable part was the tub/shower combo; it was beautiful to look at, but I had to hold the support rail and climb over the deep and tall edge to get in/out. Also, the lip of the tub was above the deck so water splattering while showering runs onto the deck and then onto the floor in the bathroom and the bedroom (the architect for this needs to go back to school!)
Note to management: tell your housekeepers not to face the handheld shower sprayer toward the wall. When the shower is turn on, the water hits the wall, gushes onto the deck, and then onto the floor.
FOOD: Plentiful and endlessâ€¦but not very tasty with a few exceptions. When I go to an all-inclusive I have low expectations for the foodâ€”especially the buffets. They have to prepare a lot of food quickly and appeal to a world-wide audience. That being said, this food was way less appealing that the other 4 all inclusives at which we have stayed. Except for the baconâ€”the fully cooked pieces were awesome and tasted just like bacon in the U.S. I also loved the mushroom risotto.
As for the a la cartesâ€¦we loved the Japanese hibachi and the U.S. steakhouse. We didnâ€™t care for the Brazilian steakhouse or the Italian. A la cartes are a pain thoughâ€”you either eat at 6pm or you wait 1-2 hours to be seated.
Note to management: the buffet by the Palace runs out of large plates at every mealâ€”even early in the serviceâ€”whatâ€™s up with that? The fruit was especially disappointingâ€”not much variety and mostly tasteless. This should be a great go-to item for people who want to eat light.
SERVICE: Hit or miss. Not much English is spoken beyond the front desk. It took several hours and many calls and trips to the front desk to get our rollaway bed. We booked a room for three so it was not a surprise that we needed an extra bed. We were exhausted by the time we finally got to lay down on our first day.
Shout-out to KIMBERLY at the front desk! She was so friendly and helpfulâ€”wish I would have met her on the first day.
TEEN ZONE: Nice space with video games, pool, and ping-pong. The two ladies who supervised were very friendly. My son had fun interacting with the other kids he met here. It is however, in a horrible location. A far corner as far from the beach as possible and as far from the Palace as possible.
Notes to management: Relocate the teen zone next to the sports area; it would be more central. Also, teen boys love to play sports as much as video games. No one was ever just hanging out at the sports area so no one to play with. If you canâ€™t relocate the teen zone then put a half basketball court by the teen zone. Also, there should be pool tables and ping pong tables accessible to adult guests/families for evening entertainment. There were often adults in the teen zone playing these gamesâ€”not cool for the teenagers.
PARTING THOUGHT: Overall, it was an enjoyable trip and I thought the value for the money was good. This place has so much going for it but there are a lot of little things bringing it down. If you are still reading at this point, my last recommendation is to ignore all the â€˜terribleâ€™ reviews. Anyone who rates this place that low is someone who is never happy or had unusual circumstances. Read the reasonable reviews and decide for yourself if the little things are of any consequence to you.
LIFE IS ALWAYS BETTER AT THE BEACH!
had great time in the palladium punta cana . Been to palladium Jamaica and mexico . As always great ataff . Drank too much but enjoyed it at the time but not in the morning ! , swimming pools clean and the water lovely and cool . The gardeners never stop in the heat so the grounds are spotless .
This was our 3rd stay at the Palladium. We were at GP Palace for 2 weeks. We booked a loft suite and sent a room request for a building closer to beach. We got a beautiful room with partial sea view in building 83 which is a fantastic location...close to beach, pool, and lobby. If you are traveling with a tween/teen, I recommend loft suite. Our son loved having his own space with an ensuite toilet. The only issue was that the sofa bed is really hard. We put extra bedding to make it tolerable.
Staff as usual was hard working all over the resort. If you smile and say Hola, you'll have a better vacation overall as staff will interact and remember you. Tips are appreciated especially if you are friendly and polite with it. Special thanks to Yrene in beach bar, Augustine our cleaning lady and Carmen at the Las Torres buffet for their hard work, smiles and friendliness!
Food is plenty and comparable to any other good AI. Drinks are good. If you want a stronger drink, just ask.
We tried all the a la cartes. Our favourites were Mexican, Japanese and Indian. Buffets offer great variety and convenience. Food is same quality/taste as a la cartes. Largest and best dinner buffet is in Bavaro lobby.
Free wifi works well everywhere, even on the beach!
Can't forget to mention the beach! We go to Punta Cana for the gorgeous Bavaro beach and Palladium is built along approx 1km stretch! Soft deep white sand and plenty of shade. Whole resort is beautifully landscaped and well maintained.
We will be back :)
Had a fantastic time at the Grand Palladium! The staff was friendly. Whenever there was an issue, the guest relations department was very accommodating. Scaring, Rose and Udid was awesome! I would come back!
Let me start off by saying WOW! My wife and I stayed at the Grand Palladium Palace for a week with our 5 friends and we all had a wonderful stay. We had emailed them a week prior to our stay requested to stay beside our friends, which they granted and upgraded us to a deluxe renovated junior suite!
The resort is huge as it is essentially 4 resorts in one and allows access to the Palace, Bavaro and Punta Cana, however there is limited access to Royal Suites unless you're staying there. We were very surprised at how well the grounds were kept, especially because it's so huge. The grounds are very clean, filled with lush vegetation, lots of trees and beautiful flowers, fountains etc that are well taken care of. The lobby was also beautiful and very modern, filled with swings and couches which made it so relaxing. Getting around the hotel is also pretty easy, everything is about 10-15 minutes away and don't fret if you don't want to walk, there are trains and golf carts that are always running. They are usually a 15 minute wait (island time) at the major pick up points (lobbies, restaurants and theatres). One of the drivers who were very helpful was Jose, he picked us up from a random point even though he was not supposed to there because we were lost.
We stayed in the deluxe renovated junior suite and it was stunning, very chic white decor. The beds and the couch was super comfortable and the floors were all marble. The bathroom was very spacious, with his and her sinks, and a jacuzzi tub.The only downfall was the height of the tub which was very high, making it hard for us to go in and out of, especially when the floor is wet after a bath.
There are 5 pools in the resort, we found the Punta Cana and the Palace pool to be the craziest, lots of fun games and entertainment however when we wanted some peace and quite, we went to the Secret pool at the Royal Suites, its open until 12 am and is adults only. The pools are amazing, most play music, and theres lots of activities/sports during the day and you even get little bottles of rum if you win.
The hotel has a wide array of entertainment for all age groups, theres a kids and teen club, as well as the casino which was small but still enjoyable. However, the cards for blackjack were unfairly stacked and it was very noticeable among many guests we talked to, a little fishy but we soon avoided it. At night the lobbies are the place to be, there are shows and live music, people are always dancing. We actually did not go to the theatre for any of the actual shows but the disco was fun, we highly recommend going to the Tequila party, its very wild. The other nights the disco was okay, a little more English music would be great. We had 2 foam parties while we were there and we loved it, great for everyone including kids, so don't miss out of that. The best was the all white beach party, with a DJ and lights on the beach accompanied by a fire show which blew us all away.
How can I even begin to describe the beach? There was an abundance of palm trees, soft white sand, crystal clear blue water, comparable to the beautiful beaches in Cuba and a good amount of beach chairs, but it does quite a bit of seaweed, limited amounts of shaded areas and palapas. Be cautious of the sales people on the beach trying to sell excursions or souvenirs. They are very pushy and unfortunately we fell for the trap. We payed a deposit for parasailing the day before, the next day the told us to come at 11:30, we showed up at 11 and they made us wait until 1 and told us there were no boats and that the boats would be back at 3. We ate lunch and returned to the place, they made us wait until 4:30 and said they had no boats. They wasted our whole day, we were unable to do anything else but wait and although they returned our deposit, we think that they make commission based on the receipts so they don't really care whether you go or not. AVOID these people like the great plague (they usually roam around the dive centre and at the end of the beach where the VIP section for Royal Suites members). If your planning on booking an excursion, it's always safe to book it through the hotel or your airlines, because it's legitimate.
We experienced quite a few ups and downs with the food. We were not able to go to all of the restaurants due to the fact that reservations were only available to travel club members and royal suites guests so the only option was to line up well before the restaurants opened if you wanted a table. It was also quite difficult for us since we were a group of 7 and seating us together took some effort. We were able to get tables at the indian, brazilian, chinese and spanish tapas restaurants. We went to the indian and brazilian restaurants at non-peak hours so the wait time was not a big concern as it only took less than 15 or 20 minutes to get a table. The Chinese restaurant however took much longer, we put our name on the list at 7:30 and were called in at about 9. To make things worse, our entrees took almost an hour to be served. The Brazilian restaurant operates in the style of copacabana in that they give you a base plate with a little bit of rice, a piece of corn and some mashed potatoes then bring skewers of different meats to your table and you can pick and choose which ones you'd like to have. All of the restaurants had a great dessert selection, mostly consisting of different types of cakes, pudding, and ice-cream. We highly recommend the mango lassi at the indian restaurant.There is food absolutely everywhere, by the beach, pools, and near the lobbies of all the hotels. There are several buffets with great selections, especially steaks! In many cases we found that we actually liked the buffet better than the restaurants especially the buffet beside the Japanese restaurant. The 24 hour sports bar is also great, especially for those late night meals, they have a buffet and as well as a menu, the sports bar burger is amazing, better than most burgers here in Toronto. Room service is also free and runs from 11am-11pm, very convenient, the food is average, however it takes a around 45 minutes to an hour depending on the time you order.
The wifi was great, one because it's free and second it works at the beach especially near the VIP section. Some places is a bit spotty however ours worked fine in our room as well as the lobby, no problem!