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Dreams Macao Beach Punta Cana – A Comprehensive Review

Grade

4.1 out of 5 Stars

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Overview 

This luxury all-inclusive resort is located a 40-minute drive from Punta Cana International airport. Originally opened in February 2020 the doors were barely open before they had to shut them again due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

This resort is a family-friendly spot that is also well suited to couples. They do a good job in the separation of adults areas and kids areas to create a welcoming environment for all age groups.

The resort has 500 suites on offer so it’s definitely a larger resort.  As we visited during COVID, it was a little hard to judge what the resort would be like at full capacity. We estimate that it was probably at 30% capacity when we visited. 

The litmus test for us is on whether a resort has enough space and amenities. Is how easy it is to get a sun lounger at the beach or by the pool around midday. There is a huge amount of space by the pool and the beach is really expansive, so even at full capacity, we find it hard to imagine you would be struggling.  

Our review is based on our experiences staying in a Preferred club master suite. 


Top Tips 

  • Getting a booking in the spa can be difficult at times. So, if this is something you are planning on doing on your vacation then be sure to book some treatments before you arrive, as we had real difficulty getting an appointment when we were there.  
  • Immigration when you arrive in the Dominican Republic can be a very slow process. There is an e-ticket that needs to be filled in before entering the country, so be sure to do this before arriving and have the QR code ready. It will save you a lot of time and hassle if you have this ready.
  • When you book into a preferred club, one of the amenities is an adults only pool area. This is for preferred guests only, so if you fancy an adults only experience by the pool it’s worth booking into a preferred club room for this benefit. 
  • If you’re travelling as a family with more than two kids we highly recommend that you check out the 2 bedroom villas. They are really well sized and pretty well priced for the standard of villa that you get. 
  • There are a number of upsells throughout the resort and after a few days it became a little annoying how frequently the staff were asking if you’d like professional photo shoots, dinner at the beach or treatments in the spa. 

Check-In

This process was very smooth and quick. By the time we stepped through the front doors we were in our room within 15 minutes.  When we arrived we also got upgraded from a Junior Suite to a Master Suite.  We figured this was down to the occupancy levels during Covid and we were more than happy to take the nicer room. There was also live music and traditional Dominican dancers performing in the reception area when we arrived, which was a nice touch. 


Location

Located in the Macao area of Punta Cana, the resort is just a 40-minute drive from Punta Cana International airport. The resort is located in an idyllic point with turquoise water and soft sand. It is the perfect Vacation spot for a relaxing beach holiday. There isn’t too much to do close to the resort, but given the size and variety of things to do in the resort, there is not much need to leave it. 


Is the Resort Child Friendly

The resort is advertised as welcoming to all ages and when we visited we did find that there were couples, groups of adults and families that were visiting it. The resort has a really nice mix of being family-friendly, but not too overrun with kids.  So, you shouldn’t be put off if you are a couple looking for a relaxing retreat. There is a kids club on offer here, so the kids are well taken care of. 

The maximum capacity of the standard room is two adults and two children, they can organize additional beds to be set up in the room if you have two adults and two kids staying in one room. 

If you’re traveling with kids they typically locate you in rooms that are near the water park.  

Rating the Kids Club 

Although we didn’t have kids with us when we visited we did ask other guests with children what the kids club was like.  Overall the feedback was pretty glowing with a range of activities on offer for the kids to keep them more than entertained. The Explorer club runs from 10 am to 7 pm and has a really impressive slate of activities for them. A typical day would look like this.  

10am – 11am – Climbing Wall Time 

11am -12pm – Beach time 

12pm -1pm – Lunch time

1pm – 2pm Movie Time 

2pm – 3pm Painting Class

3pm – 4pm Basketball Camp

5pm – 6pm Mini-Bingo 

6pm – 7pm Frisbee Class 

Even if you don’t want to put your kids in the kids club there are loads of amenities and things to do with them. The water park and lazy river are seriously impressive. 


Amenities 

This resort was literally open a few weeks at the time we visited. So, everything was really pristine. You could see that the resort cut no corners. The place was really beautiful and had a lovely aesthetic to it.  

This was true too for the amenities. You name it and they will have it. From a top-class spa. Top-of-the-range fitness facilities. It is a really stunning beach, a lazy river, and a ton of pools. The standout amenity for us and this is especially relevant if you have kids is the water park area. A great place for the kids and it is a really impressive size for a resort. 

There are also really impressive arcade/game rooms that will rival your local arcade. It has all of the favorites like bowling, air hockey, racing simulator to name a few. A thing to note is that you have to pay to use the arcade machines as it’s not included in the all-inclusive package. 

Pools 

There are four main adult pool areas with the waterpark/kids club area located near the back of the resort. There are also a number of suites that have swim-up pools, so buildings 1-4 have a pool running in front of them.  When we visited there were no issues getting a spot by the pool. The temperature of the pools was also really good. It seemed like all of the pools were heated. There is also one additional smaller pool in the resort that is reserved for preferred club guests.  

Day Activities 

There are loads of things to see and do here. From archery to a massive climbing wall. The Dreams Macao beach has it all on offer. The staff at the resorts really do put their best foot forward in keeping the guests entertained with a slate of classes and events throughout the day. 

Evening Entertainment 

If you have been to an all-inclusive resort before you know that the evening entertainment can be a bit hit and miss. Honestly, we weren’t too impressed with their nighttime offering at Dreams Macao Beach.

Gym 

The gym here is actually on the smaller size and considering that this is a 500 room resort. Although when we visited we never had issues with the capacity we could imagine it may get hard to get a treadmill or use the weights. 

The range of equipment on offer was very extensive. It has all of the cardio staples such as treadmills, elliptical machines, rowing machines, and stationary bikes. There are also free weights and a decent set of machine weights too. There is a nice cardio area as well. 

Golf 

Although there is no golf course in the resort there are a few options within driving distance of the resort.  Your best option is a 35-minute drive from the resort.  The Cocotal Golf and Country Club. The course is well designed and challenging and the upkeep of the course was very good. Rounds here range from $100 – $150 depending on the time of day you play and the season. 


Beach 

The beaches in Punta Cana are usually quite good and the Macao beach is one of the better ones in the region. It’s a really expansive and impressive beach. You will never find it difficult to find a sun lounger. 

The resort is perfectly located with a bay to the right side of the beach so the waters in front of the resort are relatively calm. A Lot of beaches in Punta Cana have the issue of seagrass washing up onto the beach, but when we visited the Macao beach there wasn’t a huge amount of it, so it was easy to jump in for a dip.


Sip, Saver See 

Dreams resort is part of the Amresorts chain of hotels. They have a number of locations in the Punta Cana area.  They have a really unique offer that we haven’t seen in other resorts. Basically, if you are getting a bit tired of the offering at the Macao Beach resort or you just fancy getting out and seeing somewhere else.  You have the ability to eat at the restaurants, have drinks and enjoy the evening entertainment at any of their sister resorts for the night. We highly recommend doing this especially if you had considered going to one of the other resorts. It gives you a sneak peek into the other resorts to see if they’re worth booking for your next trip.

When we visited this feature wasn’t available due to COVID, but in the future, you should definitely make use of this service. 

  • Dreams Macao Beach Punta Cana
  • Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa
  • Dreams Dominicus La Romana
  • Dreams Onyx Resort & Spa

Spa 

Rejuvenate at the Dreams Spa by Pevonia offers a range of spa treatments in a wonderfully designed facility. When we visited we went for a hot stone massage which was a great experience.

The 50-minute massage costs $255 US per person and included obligatory access to the hydrotherapy and spa pools before and after your appointment. The Dreams Macao also offers a Spa add-on that gives you six 50 minutes long services of your choice and gets FREE two 25 minutes mini discovery treatments for $699 USD per person.  For a complete list of services check out their menu here.


Tipping 

Although gratuities and tax are included in the price of the all-inclusive, it’s common courtesy to tip the staff for their service. One of the best elements of Dreams Macao Beach is the stellar service so from our point of view tipping should be considered mandatory.

For drinks, we typically tipped a dollar per drink and $5-10 for meals, depending on the service.  The staff accepts any currency, but US Dollars are the easiest option for them. It’s also easier for yourself instead of having to do the calculation in your head for the exchange rate. 


Cleanliness

The resort was super clean and they were taking all of the precautions necessary to make sure that the guests and staff were being kept safe in these uncertain times. We visited during COVID, so the resort was probably at around 30% capacity. 

A number of elements were changed from if you visited in normal times. Not all amenities and services were available. For example, the Sip, Savor and See benefit was not available. At the buffet restaurant, there was a server at each of the stations to dish out your food, but all of these precautions gave you the feeling of safety and process.  


Booking During COVID 

Amresorts currently has a number of elements to give its guests some flexibility and assurance in booking a holiday in these uncertain times.  They offer things such as Antigen testing on-site for no additional cost.  CleanComplete+ Quarantine Program, so if a guest receives a positive test while on property that prevents departure, the cost of quarantine at the property will be covered for up to 14 days after the original departure date.

We couldn’t find any documentation in regards to if you need to cancel or reschedule your trip if you’re protected. So, it’s worth confirming with the resort what they offer before booking. For all of their information regarding COVID protocols and the most up-to-date information, check out their FAQ page here.


What’s included in the all-inclusive package

Basically, all food, drinks, use of amenities,  taxes, and gratuities are included in your all-inclusive package. They call it the “Unlimited-Luxury Package”, but to you and me this is the typical offering that you get at an all-inclusive.  There are a few things that aren’t included such as bottles of wine 


Dress Code

There is a dress code for the restaurants, but overall we didn’t really see it enforced very stringently. Bordeaux and Himitsu did have a casual elegance dress code, but honestly, we didn’t notice much difference in the clothes people were wearing in these restaurants compared to the French and Japanese one. 


Food + Restaurant Options 

Ranking the Restaurants

  1. Himitsu

Open for dinner only, this Asian-themed restaurant was our favorite on the resort. The sushi here was really decent. Like most all-inclusive resorts that have an Asian restaurant, there is also a Hibachi experience on offer here. We at InspoVacay are suckers for Teppanyaki experiences, so we really enjoyed this restaurant.  Our standout dish here was the Yakisoba. This is one of the few restaurants in the resort that you will need a reservation for, so make sure to book ahead.

  1. Oceans Restaurant

Located behind the main pool, this restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The breakfast setting is only for preferred guests, while the rest of the sittings are available to all guests. The Dominican/seafood restaurant with lovely views of the ocean and the beach. It was the resort’s main fine dining offering. The ceviche here was so fresh and definitely the best dish we had during our stay. 

  1. El Patio 

A Mexican restaurant that serves up all of the traditional dishes you would expect. We ate here once and the food here was quite good. The guacamole was fresh and well seasoned and the Tortilla chips tasted homemade. 

  1. Bordeaux 

This was the restaurant we were most looking forward to trying; we were disappointed when we actually ate there.  The reviews we read for this french style offering were really strong, but honestly, the food was quite inconsistent.  The decor of the restaurant was really nice and the staff was extremely attentive. 

  1. World Cafe

The main buffet of the resort, this place has a wealth of choices and is probably the best option if you’re traveling with kids. As there is really so much on offer here. This is the restaurant you will probably frequent the most. We ate breakfast here most days. The omelet station was our favorite. 

  1. Seaside Grill

This restaurant is located in a picturesque seaside location, as you probably have guessed by the name of the restaurant. It serves up a range of fresh fish and meats that are grilled over an open flame for some serious flavor. We had the ribeye steak and the tuna steak and they were both lovely cuts and were cooked to perfection. 

  1. Barefoot Grill

This is the perfect spot to grab some lunch by the beach.  Located just off the main pool and a short jaunt from the beach. The Barefoot Grill serves up Burgers, pizzas and all the lunchtime favorites you would expect to get in a bar-style restaurant.  The food isn’t going to blow you away, but it is decent enough for a midday snack. 

  1. Portofino

An Italian restaurant was one of the more disappointing restaurants in the resort. We had both Pizza and pasta when we ate there and both were not great. For the pizza, the dough was not cooked fully through and the pasta was overcooked. Both of these dishes should be automatic in terms of quality for an Italian restaurant.  

Other Food Offerings

Macao Food Truck

The perfect spot for a late-night snack after a few drinks, this food truck serves up burgers, tacos, fries, and a selection of snacks that are great for soaking up the alcohol from the night.  

Coco Cafe

Although this isn’t really a restaurant there is food available so we included it here. This is the main coffee shop of the resort. They serve up all of your favorite caffeine-infused drinks as well as sweet treats and sandwiches. 

Room Service 

During normal times room service is available 24 hours a day, but due to Covid, the timeframe has been reduced to 8 am – 11 pm. The room service offering is very extensive with a sample of each of the restaurants in the resort as well as all of the usual room service dishes. 


Bars and Drinks Offering 

There are six main bars in the resort with an additional bar that is available to preferred guests only. Given the size of the resort, we actually felt like the bar offering was a little limited.  We imagine at full capacity they could get a little too busy.  

There is a great range of foreign and local beers as well as an extensive choice of premium international top-shelf liquor. That coupled with all of the local favorites means whatever drink you fancy the bar staff will be able to oblige. 


Rooms Types

There are three main types of suites on offer at this resort. Of those four room types, there are fourteen different variants of them (these are mainly differentiated by the views the rooms have)   All of the suites are very well sized and have a really modern aesthetic. Most of the rooms have the option of having a sea view or not. 

Junior Suite 

The standard room at the resort. At 603 sq. ft this suite is pretty well sized. With a king-sized bed, a small seating area, and a very nice balcony this is the perfect room for couples. The balcony has a very boujee bathtub in it. It’s described that the room has a living area, but in reality, it’s a very small space. So, if you like spending a lot of time chilling out in your room. It might be worth looking at the master suites. 

Master Suite 

The bedroom area is pretty similar to the bedroom of the Junior Suite. The main difference is that the master suite comes with a dining room, a fully equipped kitchenette, and a larger living area. The balcony in these rooms is a little bigger than the Junior suite rooms. 

Two-Bedroom Villa 

The largest offering in the resort, this is the perfect offering for families. With two large bedrooms and decent-sized living room,  a dining room, and a kitchenette. This villa has all of the bells and whistles for a private luxury retreat. There is also a lovely deck with a sun lounge area and a small pool for added privacy.


Is the Preferred Club worth it 

There is a large range of benefits that you get when you stay in a Preferred room, but in our opinion, a lot of them are table stakes and not necessarily worth the price. The main features we saw the most benefit in were as follows.  

Private Adults Only Pool Area 

If you are traveling as a couple, with friends, or a solo traveler and want to distance yourself from kids then the private pool area is a great feature. Although there is a water park at the back of the resort where most typically spend their days. If you want the certainty of a kid’s free area then it’s worth getting the preferred club for this. 


Weddings at the Dreams Macao Beach 

Weddings are catered for at this resort and they have a lovely setup for you to make the most of your special day. There are a number of different packages available that are covered in detail here on their Weddings page.

We have compiled a condensed overview of the packages available. There are three packages available at the Dreams resort. The prices for these are negotiable and in general across all-inclusive resorts if you book a certain number of rooms you can get the wedding cost comped. 

Dreams Wedding in Paradise Package ($999 USD)

Here are some of the highlights of what’s included in this package.

  • A wedding planner
  • Bouquets for the wedding couple and two of the wedding party. 
  • A Wedding cake (for up to ten guests)

The package is $999 but complimentary when booking at least 7 nights in the required room category or higher or if 5 rooms, any category, are booked for at least 3 nights

Dreams of Love Wedding Package ($3,399 USD)

Here are some of the highlights of what’s included in this package.

  • A judge or minister of the ceremony
  • A wedding planner
  • Bouquets for the wedding couple and two of the wedding party. 
  • Hairstyling and makeup for one person.
  •  A Wedding cake and sparkling wine (up to 20 guests)
  • Private cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres (Silver menu, up to 20 guests)
  • Private dinner reception (Silver menu, up to 20 guests)
  • One natural floral centerpiece for the main table

Dreams Ultimate Wedding Package ($3,799 USD)

Everything from the Dreams of love wedding package and the following. 

Here are some of the highlights of what’s included in this package.

• Semi-private rehearsal dinner for ten max

• Two boutonnieres and two corsages for the wedding party

• Sound system with speaker and microphones

• Hairstyling and makeup application for one person

• Ceremony décor 

• Private cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres (Gold menu, up to 20 guests)

• Private dinner reception (Gold menu, up to 20 guests)

• One natural floral centerpiece for ceremonial table

• Live Mexican music trio (one set, during cocktail hour)


Excursions

Punta Cana is a big tourist destination, so organized excursions are a big thing. There are a variety of options to choose from. We found the most compelling and enjoyable excursions to be the following. 

Saona Island

This stunning Island is located around 40 minutes from Punta Cana. I feel like stunning almost doesn’t do service to how beautiful this Island really is. It was easily the most idyllic location we have seen in the Dominican and well worth a visit. From soft white sand to turquoise water it’s well worth a trip. 

Hoyo Azul & Scape Park Cap Cana

Another area of natural beauty, the Hoyo Azul is a magnificent sinkhole and national park. 


Conclusion 

The Dream Macao beach is a brand new resort and honestly, we were expecting it to have more teething problems than we experienced. Maybe it was because we hadn’t holidayed in a while and we’re so happy to be away that we glossed over some of the cracks, but overall this is a great resort. 

The is a standout offering specifically for families. The strength of the kids club, the wealth of really impressive amenities, and the luxury feel of the resorts make it the perfect spot for the kids to have a blast and the adults to rest and relax. 

If you’re a couple or want an adults-only resort this might not be the best option for you.  Although this is a large resort and the kid’s pool area and water park are in one corner of the resort and there are locations throughout the resort.  If you are looking for an adults-only experienced this is not the resort for you. 

The food was good. A little inconsistent in parts, but overall an acceptable offering. The variety and choice of restaurants are great and the quality of produce used was of a decent standard.  The service here was top class and we really had no complaints throughout our stay. 

If you are looking for a family getaway for a mid-range price tag with luxury feels then the Dream Macao beach is a strong option.  


FAQ’s

Q. Does the Dreams Macao Beach offer a shuttle service from the Airport 

A. The Dreams Macao beach does offer a shuttle to and from the airport. This does come at an additional cost though.

Q. Is parking available at the resort 

A. Free Parking is available at the resort 

Q. Is Wi-Fi included

A. Yes, Wi-Fi is included in the price of your package.  It is available throughout the resort and we found that the strength to be very good.  We had no issues streaming Netflix at the pool and taking Facetime calls from our room.  

Q. What local attractions are there?

A. Punta Cana is a big tourist destination and there are a lot of choices for Excursions. There are a few natural attractions such as Saona Island which is the most picturesque beach we have ever been to.