The Best Resorts to Book in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Choose between turquoise waters or the tranquil swimming pool and relax in luxury at Hotel Serenade
Choose between turquoise waters or the tranquil swimming pool and relax in luxury at Hotel Serenade | Courtesy of Hotel Serenade / Expedia
Photo of Sara Darling
2 November 2021
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Punta Cana enjoys an enviable site at the co-mingling of the Caribbean and the Atlantic, hence the many water sports types here, relishing the opportunity to play in the waters along 32km (20mi) of beaches. The choice of resorts in Punta Cana is extensive, from affordable luxury to the high-end exclusive, as well as a good selection more focused on families. Choose between Greater Punta Cana, with the Bavaro and Uvero Alto beaches, and the exclusive, high-end Cap Cana, famed for world-class golf and a large yachtie scene. Here’s our pick of the best Cap Cana and Punta Cana resorts – all bookable with Culture Trip.

Eden Roc Cap Cana

Stylish marble bathroom at Eden Roc at Cap Cana with bath by large window overlooking palm trees
Courtesy of Eden Roc at Cap Cana / Expedia

If all you want to do is kick back and relax on holiday, then you want the Eden Roc Cap Cana. The widely lauded, sublime service envelops you from the moment you check in. Your first glimpse of the glinting pool will make your heart flutter, but, better still, you don’t have to dip your toes in with strangers – book one of the 32 stand-alone boutique suites and you’ll get a private pool and relaxation area tailor-made for in-suite spa pampering. There are also 26 beachfront suites by the shore for pure romance. Expect old-school glamour in communal areas, especially the Riva Bar, which is reminiscent of 1960s Venice.

Melia Caribe Beach Resort

Clean white linen on two beds and sitting area in Melia Caribe Beach Resort
Courtesy of Melia Caribe Beach Resort / Expedia
An unforgettable Dominican Republic holiday experience is a certainty at the Melia Resort – nobody leaves disappointed. Directly on the spectacular Bavaro Beach and immersed in lush tropical gardens, this retreat is a world away from city living, dotted with quiet spaces but good on the family-friendly activities front, too. Whether you book a lavish suite or a more straightforward beachside family room, you’ll get a cool, calm, plushly furnished haven. Staff buzz about as seamlessly as the intriguing birds, who may come and serenade you on your patio. Step out into a varied food scene, with Dominican dishes as well as Italian, Spanish, Japanese and Tex-Mex.

Sanctuary Cap Cana

Minimalist living room with white-washed wooden panelled walls and cream sofas at Sanctuary Cap Cana
Courtesy of Sanctuary Cap Cana / Expedia

Named “sanctuary” for a reason, this pretty Spanish castle-inspired building complete with red roof tiles and turrets, is a high-end hideaway for adults desperate to depart Planet Earth and relax. Don’t expect a party vibe, as the beautiful setting appeals to couples who hole up in swim-up suites, disappearing for treatments in the full-service spa and materialising discreetly to dine on sushi or seafood – there are at least a dozen restaurants and a liberal sprinkling of bars. Best of all, you’re close enough to the beach if you fancy a romantic stroll hand in hand through the shallows at sunset.

Hotel Serenade

Hottub and deckchairs overlooking a large freeform swimming pool at Hotel Serenade
Courtesy of Hotel Serenade/ Expedia

The arresting azure brilliance of the sea is matched by the blue of the architecture and the pools at the all-inclusive Hotel Serenade, one of the biggest resorts in Punta Cana, not to mention one of the newest. There are three pools, so one way or another you can be sure to get your laps in – and of course the sea itself beckons, a hop and a skip away, lapping the hotel’s private sandy beach. Viewing your surroundings – green mountains and those turquoise waters – you’ll face tough decisions about how to spend each day. But you could just stay put, grazing your way between the Central Plaza Buffet Restaurant and the Cut Prime Steak House by way of Kyoka (Asian) and O’livo (Italian delicatessen).

The Westin Resort Punta Cana

Stylish double bedroom with white sheets and dining and sitting area in The Westin Resort Punta Cana with views overlooking the ocean
Courtesy of The Westin Resort Punta Cana / Expedia

As a gated beachfront resort in Punta Cana, the Westin can’t fail to exude an exclusive vibe – and the approach, through swathes of tropical vegetation to reach the reception only enhances the impression. With a prime position directly on 5km (3mi) of white sandy beach, the Westin focuses on authentic Caribbean luxury, fusing subtle colonial decor with bang-up-to-the-minute technology. So how to spend your days? Relax, perhaps, at the cigar bar, or take some shade at the La Yola floating restaurant. Dining – there are three restaurants – is diverse. And if gentle exercise is required afterwards, some of the best courses in Punta Cana are within effortless reach.

Tortuga Bay

Swimming pool and deck chairs on marble floor at Luxury Villas at Tortuga Bay, Puntacana Resort
Courtesy of Luxury Villas at Tortuga Bay / Expedia

For a really exclusive vacation, book one of the island’s swankiest villas at Tortuga Bay. Designed by global fashion icon and native Dominican Oscar de la Renta, the resort is a luxury assortment of a dozen or so exquisite villas and suites, set amongst green acres by the thousand, with 8km (5mi) of pristine private beachfront to lose yourself on. Whether you come for a couples’ romantic getaway, for the golf, or for your family vacation, you will be certain to get lots of privacy. When you’re not sunbathing, the menu of pleasures is long, from free water sports to indulgent massages and wraps in the full-service Six Senses spa, to dinner delights in the many restaurants and bars – our money’s on the seafood pasta at La Yola, perched right over the sea.

Dreams Royal Beach Punta Cana

Winding swimming pools and palm trees overlooking the ocean at Dreams Royal Beach Punta Cana
Courtesy of Dreams Royal Beach Punta Cana / Expedia

An easy half-an-hour drive from Punta Cana International Airport, Dreams Royal Beach has a prime position on the east coast of DR beside Playa Bávaro, where the Caribbean Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean. Along with a sandy beach as far as the eye can see, the tropical palm trees, sea breeze and thatched roofs that pepper the property evoke pure paradise. Spend days relaxing by one of Punta Cana’s largest free-form swimming pools, which winds from the lobby to the sandy beachfront, then graze on seafood at Oceana – one of a stack of places to eat and drink. You can also have a facial at the sumptuous Secrets Spa by Pevonia, or take an excursion to nearby Catalina Island for snorkeling and diving.

Secrets Royal Beach

Stylish rattan chairs and wooden walls in a bar at Secrets Royal Beach
Courtesy of Secrets Royal Beach / Expedia

If limitless gourmet dining and top shelf spirits are what make your holiday swing, you won’t regret a week at the upscale, adults-only Secrets Royal Beach. Its sumptuous suites are urban-chic, redolent of South Beach Miami, and the food is ambrosial. If you over-indulge on the buffet, don’t worry as there are four pools, including an expansive freeform number that overlooks the turquoise Caribbean Sea, to help you keep your carbs in check. To push the boat out good and proper – for a honeymoon or a milestone anniversary – consider the Preferred Club Suite, which has access to a special concierge service and lounge and two club pools, including a magical lazy river pool, overlooking the beach.

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