Unveiling the Enigma of Iberostar Punta Cana: A Whimsical Adventure or a Comedy of Errors?

Iberostar Punta Cana

Welcome skeptics and adventurous souls alike to the riddle that is Iberostar Punta Cana. Hold on tight as we navigate the twists and turns of this puzzling resort, where laughter and eyebrow raises may accompany your every step. Ready to embark on a whimsical quest of questionable choices? Let’s dive into the delightful enigma that is Iberostar Punta Cana.

In this review we will tiptoe through its “star” accommodations, attempting to decipher if they shine as brightly as the name suggests or if they’re simply putting on a cosmic show that is more like a disco ball with a failing battery.

So, buckle up fellow adventurers and get ready to embark on this wild ride through the realm of Iberostar Punta Cana. Will it be a comedy of errors or a hidden gem of amusement? We shall soon find out!  Embrace the laughter, embrace the quirkiness, and allow me to guide you through this topsy-turvy amusement park of a resort.  


Iberostar Punta Cana is nestled along the sun kissed shores of the Dominican Republic approximately 13 miles from the Punta Cana International Airport on the east side of the island. Once you’ve collected your luggage and prepared yourself for the tropical heat that will smack you in the face upon first step outside, you can take a taxi to the resort for roughly $40 (plus tip.)


Upon arrival, we were met with a quick check-in process. No sit down with a representative of the resort to go over all your dining options and resort amenities as I have experienced in the past. While the front desk representative was kind, it was a less than informative interaction. A welcome drink of mango juice helped the situation as the front desks were all outside, covered from direct sun, but nonetheless still quite smoldering. Luckily, I did some research prior to arriving and downloaded an app (App Store | Google Play) that had all resort information.

After our quick interaction with the front desk, we were quickly ushered to a golf cart where a bellboy was waiting to drive us and our luggage to our room. After a bit of a drive, we arrived at our room. As we eagerly swung open the door we were greeted with an overpowering aroma of mold and a wave of heat smacked us in the face as if the room had suddenly morphed into a mold infested sauna. Upon further inspection, there was poop on the toilet, dirt all over the floor and in the tub, and opened drinks in the mini fridge.

After processing the shocking site that greeted us, I had a burning desire to march my little booty right back to the front desk and unleash my fury. Alas, a comical conundrum presented itself-I had absolutely no clue how to navigate my way back to the front desk. So, with a sigh of defeat, I settled for the next best option and called the front desk from the room phone. With a glimmer of hope, we were assured that help was on the way. They promised to send someone to spruce up the room and address the AC situation. However, as the minutes turned to an hour, our patience wore extremely thin. It was time to make the trek back up to the reception to secure a better room. To my relief, the sweet front desk staff quickly agreed to give us a new room and dispatched a bellboy (after a 45 minute wait) to assist us in collecting our belongings and ushering us to our new room.

In a twist of fate, our new room shone with cleanliness and had the sweet relief of AC. Miraculously, they granted us an extra bed without us even asking. Score one for unexpected victories! Did I mention this was a long-awaited girl’s trip with four of my best friends? Trusting me as their travel agent for the first time, this less than impressive start was definitely a hiccup.

Our humble new room offered a pleasant view of the beautiful resort gardens. No, for real. The resort grounds were immaculate! Very well kept and clean! And let’s talk about the beds and pillows – they were extremely comfortable and this was the general consensus of our group of 5 girls and getting 5 girls to agree on anything is an act of congress, so you know they were comfy!

Inside, the mini fridge awaited us with a refreshing selection of soda and local beer. Notably, the resort takes a commendable stance on environmental sustainability by eliminating the use of plastic bottles, including water bottles. Instead, you’ll find glass water bottles in your room, ready to be refilled at the conveniently located water fill stations throughout the resort.

Dining | Bar Options

Within the expansive grounds of the resort, an array of dining options awaits, each with its own distinct ambiance and set of rules governing mealtimes. And some didn’t even follow their own rules of opening on time, leaving gaps in the day when there was no food available.

I must confess, even amidst the chaos that greeted us upon entering our room, it was the culinary experience that left a less-than-flavorful impression on me. While there were a handful of dining options, the stringent regulations and limited flexibility associated with each left much to be desired. Adhering to the strict schedule and navigating the labyrinth of rules became an unwelcome challenge, damping the overall enjoyment of our culinary adventure.

To enhance your dining experience at the resort, I wholeheartedly recommend securing restaurant reservations for your desired on-site culinary experiences upon check in to the resort. You must make your reservations with the guest services representative located in the lobby of the resort (or possibly on the app if that service is working during the time of your stay) There are two buffet options that do not require reservations, but I recommend saving these for lunch and dining in one of the restaurants for dinner.

Food reigns supreme in the realm of vacation necessities, especially at an all-inclusive resort. My interactions with the guest service representative did not leave me with any warm and positive feelings. Instead, it seemed as if my mere presence were a burden, and the representee’s demeanor convoyed a sense of indifference. It was disappointing, considering my simple intention was to obtain some information and assistance regarding food options.

To spare you from a long list of food options, their intricate rules, and their ever-changing opening and closing times, I have a little secret for you: download the app! Yes, my friends, this magical application holds all the culinary wonders and schedules you seek, right at your fingertips.

Now while the app is a fantastic resource, we did encounter a slight hiccup during our quest for food. There seemed to be a bit of miscommunication between the opening times of certain food options and the staff’s knowledge of these times. On not one, but two occasions, I found myself on a desperate quest for nourishment, only to be guided to food options that were sadly not available.

When it came to the overall quality of the food at the resort, I must say it was decent, considering it’s an all-inclusive set up. However, it’s worth noting: the pool and beach area food seemed to have a monotonous routine when it came to their food offerings, not to mention they never opened on time. It felt like a perpetual déjà vu of cafeteria-grade cuisine that left much to be desired, even for the most forgiving taste buds.

There was a shining star in the culinary constellation-the French restaurant. Perhaps it was the cozy interior, the kind staff, or the blessed coolness of the air conditioning, but it was a group favorite!

When it came to daytime libations, the resort has us covered with an abundance of bars to quench our thirst. However, as night fell, we found ourselves in a bit of a bar-ocalypse. There was only one bar that we knew of, and it happen to be at the neighboring resort (which was included in our resort as well) – DC-6/Discotheque was the name of the bar and although it had a fantastic vibe, man oh man was it a trek to get there. We wished for a closer, more relaxed spot to enjoy a drink or two, like a lobby bar where we could unwind without needing a compass.

Unlike some all-inclusive resorts where the potency of the beverages can sometimes leave you questioning if they’ve been diluted with water, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this was not the case at all during my stay. The cocktails were good and bartenders’ pours were even better.

What goes really well with some late-night drinks? Well-food of course! Ah, the midnight munchies, those inevitable companions to late-night indulgence. Sadly, our hunger pains were left unattended as the resort provided no late-night food options.

Service and Staff

Without a shred of doubt, the service and staff at the resort were an absolute delight, scoring an off-the-charts rating of 1000/10! Well, except for that one grumpy guest services personnel who could use a few extra doses of sunshine.

Their kindness and attentiveness were nothing short of stellar, providing us with great recommendations and pouring generous glasses of Mama Juana. (the Dominican elixir that you must not miss) In all honesty, it was the staff’s remarkable interactions that turned our stay from a potential fiasco to a sparkling experience worth celebrating.

While lounging by the pool or basking on the beach, it’s typically customary to be treated like royalty with poolside or beachside service. However, at this particular all-inclusive resort, such dedicated service seemed to be on a tropical vacation of its own. Though it didn’t pose a problem for us personally, it’s worth mentioning that this delightful perk was absent.

However, after returning to our room after a fun-filled day at the beach, we were greeted with a delightful surprise. The thoughtful staff had left a bottle of champagne, perfectly chilled and elegantly presented. It was a sweet and unexpected gesture that made us feel truly pampered!

Resort Excursion

After pursuing the tempting array of resort excursions, we eagerly settled on a boat tour that promised a day of adventure and snorkeling. The glossy pamphlet showcased a sleek vessel that resembled a mini yacht, and although the price tag was a bit steep at $80 per person, we assumed it would be worth every penny for a luxurious experience. Oh, how we were wrong.

To begin with, we were allocated a 5-hour time slot for the excursion. Little did we know that a significant portion of that time would be waiting for stragglers to join us. It felt like we had embarked on a quest just to reach the departure site. But finally, the moment arrived to board the boat!

To our astonishment, the vessel awaiting us was far from the luxurious paradise we had envisioned. It was cramped and overcrowded, with tour operators seemingly determined to fit more people than the boat could comfortably accommodate. We found ourselves shoulder to shoulder, lacking personal space, and to make matters worse, there was minimal shade or covering for my fair-skinned companions.

Hunger struck us fiercely as our breakfast had long been digested, and we wished and expected to have a small meal during this extended excursion. Our hopes were dashed as the tour operator failed to provide any substantial lunch. While the open bar on board offered some solace, the sole sustenance they offered was a measly bag of mini chips.

When the moment arrived for snorkeling, my excitement knew no bounds! Exploring the underwater world is a sacred ritual for me whenever I visit a tropical destination. It’s my way of connecting with nature and finding inner bliss. Throughout my previous snorkeling tours, I’ve been fortunate to encounter guides who possess a genuine passion and reverence for the ocean and its marvelous creatures. They would eagerly share insights on local ocean conservation efforts, educate us on proper snorkeling etiquette, and help us respectfully explore their stunning marine ecosystem.

However, the guide on this particular snorkeling tour seemed more focused on putting on a spectacle for us. Armed with a large bag of bread, his intention was to entice and gather fish for our viewing pleasure. At times, they would even toss the bread in our direction, leading to a swarm of fish swarming around us and beneath us. I couldn’t help but feel uneasy about this forced spectacle. I would have much preferred to let the natural rhythms of the ocean guide our experience. Feeding wild fish something outside of their natural diet didn’t sit well with me, as it seemed to go against responsible animal advocacy.

The entire snorkeling experience left me with a rather uncomfortable feeling. Despite my initial anticipation, I longed for a more authentic and harmonious encounter with the underwater world. It served as a reminder of the importance of preserving the integrity of marine ecosystems and respecting the naturel behavior of marine life.

The excursion was a lively affair, filled with booze, energic dancing, loads of people, minimal refuge from the sun and vibrant music that could be heard miles away. If this is your vibe, then this excursion is tailor-made for you. However, if this type of lively ambience is not your glass of whiskey, I would highly suggest diverting your attention from the alluring brochures that paint a dazzling picture of this excursion. It’s important to find an experience that aligns with your personal preferences and desired level of serenity. There are countless other options available that cater to different tastes and offer a more tranquil and introspective journey.

Value for Money

Imagine a delightful tropical escape where the beauty of the grounds mesmerizes you, the comfort of the beds and pillows cradle you into relaxation, and the kindness of the staff warms your heart. Picture yourself indulging in rejuvenating spa services and basking in the breathtaking beach with its crystal-clear waters. Now hold on to your seat as I reveal an unbelievable secret: I paid a mere $293 for four nights at this all-inclusive resort. Yes, you heard that right! That’s less than $75 per night for an all-inclusive vacation!

Pros: The resort boasts stunning grounds that will leave you in awe, while the beds and pillows ensure a restful sleep after a day of adventure. The staff’s genuine kindness adds a special touch to your experience, and the spa services are simply divine. The beach, with its pristine sands and crystal-clear waters, is a paradise worth exploring. Iberostar Punta Cana offers exceptional value for the price, making it an affordable choice. Plus the food options, while not extraordinary, are decent enough to satisfy your cravings.

Cons: It’s important to note that the resort is quite large, which can make navigation a bit of a challenge at times. The meal options may feel strict and limited, and unfortunately, pool and beachside service is not available. Late-night food options are also lacking, leaving your midnight cravings unsatisfied. When it comes to evening entertainment, finding a nearby bar options may require some effort. Assitionally, there were instances of communication gaps and misleading advice from the staff, which could have been approved.

In the grand scheme of things, when it comes to travel, you more often than not get what you pay for, However, considering the astonishingly low price I paid for this all-inclusive resort experience, the positives certainly outweigh the negatives. So, if you’re seeking an affordable tropical getaway with captivating surroundings, warm hospitality, and a chance to unwind by the beach, this resort just might be the hidden gem you’ve been searching for.

Our experience at Iberostar Punta Cana was a mix of highs and lows. While we encountered some setbacks such initial room issues, limited dining options, and occasional service mishaps, we cannot overlook the exceptional staff who went above and beyond to make our stay enjoyable. The breathtaking beach, beautiful grounds, great spa services, and generous pour of drinks added to the overall appeal of the resort. Despite the hiccups, we genuinely feel that we received great value for the amazing price we paid. Ultimately, if you approach your stay with an open mind, a sense of adventure, and a willingness to embrace both the ups and downs, Iberostar Punta Cana offers a memorable vacation experience.

If this review has sparked your interest in exploring the charms of Iberostar Punta Cana for your next tropical getaway, I’m here to assist you in securing the best value for your money. As a certified travel advisor specializing in the Caribbean and European destinations, I bring not only practical knowledge, but also personal travel experiences from around the world. Whether you seek a serene beach retreat or an exhilarating adventure, I can help tailor your vacation to your preferences. Reach out to me here, and let’s create an unforgettable travel experience together!