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Reviewed 4 May 2010

hello all we stayed at cayocao from april 19-27th it was our 12th anniversary and my sister in law her hubby , her sister , fiance all went as a group!! we all had a great time except i did not like the stairs shich i have bad knees and did alot of taking the taxi which was nice they had that.. We met alot of great people when we were there and enjoyed the pool bar and playing bingo with lenny!!! also enjoyed watching the dancing at night it was not very long but we enjoyed it ... te food i did not like which i am a fussy eater to begin with the itialan was the best and the gourmet surf, turf i had was ok .. buffet only a few things i would eat but not alot of stuff on their i liked.. we had room service 3 times the ceasrer salad was aweful it tasted like flowers the cheeseburger was still raw in the middle the only thing we enjoyed was the french fries.. our view to the ocean was very nice excellent security gaurd we met was george he spoke very good english and was very helpful with all the questions we needed answered. The maids did not speak english which my husband took his i phone and had a translator on it that worked great for words we needed in spanish.. we got locked out of our room 3 times and had to keep getting the card fixed then the 3rd time we said your coming with s to fix it cause they kept sending us back with a broken card that would not read so that wasted alot of our time.. the taxi that took us to town there was always guys there waiting for people to get off the taxi to take them around town in all the stores they all work together there and get a profit for the stores they take them into to get a profit the one guy jose we trusted wegot him to take us to bacardi island for the day which was 60.00 american for 6 people for the boat ride then when we got there he told us its another 80 for the taxi we just said we are not paying that and we only gave him 30 for the taxi so make sure when you do all the deals its all inclusive . haha we also went on a atv excusion with terry he had his cousin elijah take us and we ahd an excellent time never better they took us to playaricon beach just georgous and very nice for snorkling we had lunch there and a nice swim and just took alot of pictures of the beach very nice he spoke very good english and helped out alot took us to a school and we took school supplies to the school and i made up 150 ziplock bags full of candy , toys, crayons, tooth brush , tooth paste and handed it to all the kids running to the road to see us on the atv it was so nice to see a smile on there face giving them so little as i did made my day...
it was costly 135.00 a person but well worth the money it was from 9:00 am - 6:00 pm i reccomend this for sure.. Also downtown samana there is a casino when we went in we were the only ones in the casino and they watched every move you made you cant wear a hat in there and the one young guy that came in had a gun and handed it to the front door man when he walked in then when he left the guy gave him back the gun so i was a little leiry on going there again!! There are 4 little boys that live on the resort just in the bush there we went and saw them every day and took them candy, toys, hats, sunglasses , and i gve them a big beach ball on our second last day of being there it was so nice to see their face to get that just made me want to cry... but tell them ola if you see them ok!!! please take them a treat they really appreciate it there is 4 of them or any clothes you dont want there ages are probably 10 7, 5,4 im guessing! even sneak them a hamburger from the buffet haha but dont get caught LOL.. we stayed in 3312 on the bottom part with royal gold suite which was nice the dooors in the bathroom did not close very good and had a very musty smell in the room also the tub shot water everywhere it was suppose to be some kind of a jet tub didnt work all that well. make sure men dress in pants , dress shirt to o to alacarts or they will not let you in they turned down our friend when he had long shorts on they made him put pants on. also if you see stray dogs on the street give them food i did ... and if your going snorkling take an empty pop bottle from the room fill it either with bread or banana or pineapple put in the bottle and put some water in itwhen you come close to the reef give a little squirt under water and watch all the fish come to you they love eating little pieces of what ever you have in the bottle ... Oh and if your there tell looky looky hello from all inclusive. hope you have a great time and enjoy your stay the banana mamas are an awesome drink oh one more thing when we went to the airport they told us our lugage was 12 kilos over weight there is not way it could be cause we took alot of stuff for the kids over there and no way we could be over weight so the guy told me i owed 130.00 and i am like no way i cant be and he said well what o u want me to do then i said give me the case and i will go through it to see what is so much weight and he said no i have to pay i said all i have left is 40.00 thats is so he said thats fine and put the money right in his pocket and not reciept so they ripped us off same scenerio happened to our friends and they said they owe them 30.00 so they gave them 40.00 and the guy said sorry we have no change our friends said give me the money back i will give you the right change,, they did it to a bunch of people the couple that sat beside me on the plane home they suckered them in for 100.00 they saidthere is no way they were over either so not sure how they set the scales over there but there ripping people off and not a way to end a vacation is getting ripped off cause you will never forget it..all in all we would not go back due to the stairs and the airport ripping us off so have a good time hope all goes well anyquestions just email me [-]

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank pebbles896
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 May 2010

So I read many reviews on this resort before we booked/attended ... Some good and some bad, I took it with a grain of sand.
When we arrived they had transportation for us, and they check you in on the bus ... be sure to bring your hotel confirmation with you. We arrived at the resort to find we got a standard hotel room, when we paid $200 each extra for a junior suite with Air Canada Vacations. We talked with the front desk and they said those suites were overbooked and we would have one tomorrow, fine. We went back the next day and they showed us another standard room, just with a big bathroom, still not a junior suite. So again we went back. They then showed us was supposedly a junior suite (not the same as the photos) and the view they were going to give us was of a garbage dumpster. The room smelled and was no different then the standard room. So again we went back. There would be one with ocean view Thursday, 3 days before we leave. They agreed to give us a free excursion in place for our troubles and a free safe ($28 value for a week which never worked), but it can only be the horseback riding one. Nice offer however we could not accept as I was pregnant. So they were going to give us a free massage as long as we would sign a piece of paper saying we would not complain about the hotel. We did not sign and will deal with Air Canada Vacations to get our money back. This happened to every couple who booked this trip from Canada. There were about 10 couples that booked these junior suites and never got them. Frustrating!
The food was okay - standard buffet food but not much selection. The Italian restaurant was great! Recommend it. The Gourmet, as is in all gourmets ... very little food. We had to eat at the buffet afterwards. Many of us had your standard stomach issues when going to resorts. Do not drink the tap water. Bring your pepto! All water at meals is from bottles.
Bring your bug spray!
Pools are great.
The tubs are not what they show in the photos and the jets shoot water everywhere!!! Water pressure at peak times is very low in the hotel, to a point we could not shower one day at dinner.
The beds are comfier then hotels in Mexico (not as hard).
Many staff does not speak English and have a hard time communicating.
The resort has built a shopping center within the town. Expensive. There are other little stores should you want to wander farther down and a market. And just like Mexico the locals follow you around trying to get you into their store. In town at night there are no street lights.
There is a shuttle every hour that will take you to the town center or to the “junior suites” that are farther down from the main part of the resort!
The night entertainment was horrible! They cannot act or even lip sync at the right time. Most resorts these are choreographed well, but not here.
I would not go back nor recommend this resort to anyone.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with friends
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4  Thank jvjc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 April 2010

Date of Stay April 11th to 18th

Grounds and resort are beautiful.

Most of the workers do not speak any English – but are willing to help you any way they can and really appreciate any attempt at speaking to them in their own language.

The front desk ran out of internet codes for purchase for 2 days (which I found strange) – but they allowed us to use the free internet in the front lobby – so not worries.

Tips not expected. We received the same quality of service (which was good) whether we tipped or not. I can say that we did not spend as much as we usually do when vacating in Cuba.

There is a fowl smell right after the beach restaurant and lower pool on the path to the beach villas, it was there all week – I am surprised that this has not been mentioned in previous reviews.

Lots of shade at the beach even if you are not an early riser. Beach is small, but does the trick.

There are many non-resort guests walking up and down the small beach - Lots of local kids swimming. Who can blame them really - the hotel guests give them candy, soft drinks and treats – I would head for this beach too if no one kept me out and I got free stuff. One day there was a guy on the beach trying to sell stuff, but the security guard (who has a gun!) chased him off.

Food at the buffet is great, lots of selection and flavor. We ate at the Italian A La Carte once and it was OK. We ate every other meal at the buffet.

Water could be hotter – we were in the beach villas (rm 2012) and it was luke warm at best. We did not get to enjoy the Jacuzzi tub due to this – no biggie.

Bar fridge was stocked daily with beer and soft drinks. Maid did a great cleaning job.

Phone calls – make the calls from your room, not expensive at all – we called home to Canada and talked for about 5 minutes and it was only $2 USD. Just call guest services and they will make the connection – way cheaper than Cuba!

Check your room as soon as you arrive for an umbrella – you will need it if you are not staying in the main building. We had rain most evenings, and required an umbrella for the walk to the main building for meals and drinks. We didn’t have one in our room when we arrived, but the front desk sent one down as soon as we let them know.

We never used the shuttle expect to get our luggage to and from our room at check-in and check-out. It came quickly when called.

The pools by the beach villa never seem to be busy at all – most of the time we were the only ones there and that was great.

One issue with the bar at the beach villa pools– there was not a bartender, but they left beer, pop and stuff to make drinks. The issue was (no fault of the hotel) that some guests thought it was their personal stash and would take all of it everyday to have in their room. – leaving nothing for anyone else. Hello????

Air Canada Vacations – I know this has nothing to do with the resort, but thought people would like to know. When we got to the airport in Samana we were met by the Air Canada rep who pointed us in the direction of the buses – some confusion here, but there were a lot of people and it eventually got worked out. The bus ride to the hotel was not what I am accustomed to – on previous trips south there is usually a local vacation rep from the airline on the bus talking about the local scenery, customs, dos, don’t, what are acceptable tips, etc and to answer questions. We did not have this – there was a rep from a hotel (that we were not at, but the 60 wedding guest were) and he didn’t speak English and told us nothing.

Air Canada Vacation rep at the hotel – Felix. Found the orientation meeting totally uninformative. He texted on his phone the entire time and made you feel like he was in a rush to get out of there. He only discussed the excursions (barely) and hardly anything about the hotel. You are pretty much left on your own to figure everything out.

Hope this helps. We would recommend the hotel to a friend, but will probably not visit again.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank gemacdou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2010

Just got back from a one week stay at Cayacoa last night, and couldn't have had a better time at this resort. We traveled to Samana for vacation and to celebrate my husbands "50"th birthday, we were in a group of 12, all couples. I will begin with addressing the issue soooo talked about.....all the stairs. I am in my mid forties and not exactly in the best physical condition ( I should excersize more often) and I was able to climb the stairs every day at least 2-3 times. Our room was a royal golden Jr. suite booked with Transat Holidays, room 3313. These are the rooms located below the main building, there are 3 of these buildings split into 2 sections each. Our builing was the furthest one from the main building and I counted 108 stairs to go for breakfast at the buffet in the main building....if I can do it so can most people.....if you do have a problem with the stairs you can call the front desk and ask for the shuttle called a Wawa to be sent....when we did do this we never waited long. The room was very large and extremely clean, we had a king size bed that was very firm, but we like that so we were happy. The veiw from our room was great as well we could look out over the little cove and out to the sea.....BEAUTIFUL! Great bathrooms in these rooms too! This is the most senic place we have been to yet, haveing travelled the last 3 years to Punta Cana, Caya Cocoa Cuba, Riviera Nyarit Mexico. So green and lush. We contacted Terry for info on tours before we left as we felt he was held in high reguard with other tourists, but because we were such a large group we coun't come to a decition before we left....soooo..... after we arrived we decide to go on the catamaran tour through the hotel for snorkleing and to make a stop at Bacardi Island....it was fun but we did feel we paid too much $85 us per person and this was a discounted rate. One of our VERY outgoing friends went for a walk up the beach one day and found Raymond and Gregory just past the security guard on the main beach.....they offered to take us to El Limon falls for $35 us per person for our group of 12. Now to be honest this made me nervous and I was hesitant to agree to go on tour with some random person....but I did agree. One couple said no due to physical limitations and the price remained the same. We were to meet Gregory at the end of the beach at 9am the next day.....that morning another couple backed out because one was not feeling too well, again the price stayed the same and we did not have to pay up front either....we would pay at the end of the tour, now that we liked it was not just a money grab. So we arrive (I'm still hesitant) at 9am and Gregory says I will acompany you today and today you are all Gregory's Family. we took a very nice van for 1/2 hour ride to the starting location were we could buy a coffee if we wanted and there was a gift shop to look in while waiting for the horses. I have not been on a horse but once when I was a kid....each of use was given a horse and our own personal guide to walk us to the falls ( this is not a trail I would want to walk) the trail was challenging and it took some courage on my part to stay on my horse (that I think was a donkey the only one in the bunch "Tony" I felt safe on his back). My guide Manaway (not sure of spelling) was awsome he controlled Tony and gave me direction on how to ride most securely. He also pointed out many interesting things along the 25 min. ride. Now the part everyone talks about as being steep and hard to climb down is longer than I tought it would be but because it was dry (no rain) it was not that difficult to do and Manaway held my hand every step of the way. At the bottom.........WORTH EVERY BIT OF ANXIETY..........One of the most beautiful things I have ever seen....the Falls. Leaving early to go on this trip was a blessing because there were only a couple of people there when we arrived so we had a great picture opportunity we swam behind the falls to the cave and our guides were all too happy to take pictures with our cameras of us for us. As we were ready to climb back up it got very crowded....Thank You Cousin Gregory for taking us early. The climb up was tiring (I'm not in great shape) but after climbing 2/3 of it myself my guide helped pull me up the rest....did I mention how awsome he was. Had a beer at the top of the hill $3 us then back on the horses. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE no matter who you tour with tip these guides well they work soooooo hard for you we had been told $5 us would be a good tip, but my husband and I gave ours $8 each but would have given even more if we had more with us, we also bought the picture they took of the two of us together on our horses $10. So all I can say is we had an AMAZING time, were well taken care of and the price was amazing ( remember this was for a larger group 8 went with us)......So THANK YOU "Cousin" Gregory and Raymond. The staff at the hotel work very hard and were always friendly. We enjoyed many drinks but we are not really pickey as for the food it was always very good, the buffet always had a great selection and LUIS made us feel at home every day. As for the al a carte as a group we mostly like the Seafood best, then the Gormet (we ate seafood) and lastly the Italian. I ordered a cake for my husband B-day $15 and worth every penny and it was waiting at the al a carte for us they added my 50 candle turned off the lights and sang to him, nice touch. If you are booking an al a carte for more than 2 people just be sure to check you ticket before you leave the reservation desk to be sure the # is correct as we asked for 6 people and it was made for 2 so we didn't get to go to the last one. All in all we really loved pretty much everything about this place and it's people and would love to go back in a minute. Try it ...you WILL like it! Oh yes a couple more things if your safe ($28us) is closed when you check in don't waist your time trying to change the code it has to be open so call the front dest to reprogram it. The Royal Golden guest can use the internet free in the Royal Golden room aff the lobby. Amazing value for $1000 bucks best Hotel I have stayed in yet in this price range. We as a group value good Food and cleanliness as most important.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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5  Thank Lovethesungroup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 April 2010

All the reviews are correct with respect to the excellent view, rooms, and the grounds. My issue was with the different levels of liquor, and the room service. We purchased the gold upgrade as advised by our agent, to get away from the cheep liquor, and to get room service . Every day they ran out of our "allowed liquor", but we could buy "not included" liquor for 6 bucks US a drink. We have never seen this at a 5 star before. We asked if there was a further upgrade we could purchase that would include all, the answer was no. And by the way, the not included liquor is brands like Baileys, Johnny Walker Black, not over the top expensive liquor. The Normandy brand they use does not apeal to us. So beware if you are picky about your drinks. We found the room service to be good in the morning, but at night we waited at least 2 hours. The only food at the main beach was hotdogs brought down at noon. Everyday the same thing.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank corky2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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