Hotel: Grand Sirenis Punta Cana Resort and Aquagames, Dominican Republic (Review)

Another belated hotel review and I do apologise for the delay, but better late than never. I went to the Dominican Republic in Autumn last year and stayed at the beautiful Grand Sirenis Punta Cana Resort and Aquagames. 

The rooms looked beautiful on paper and in pictures. There were some small areas of complaint like someone had punched a hole in the corner or one wall and the shower leaked, but they were cosmetic. Otherwise, we had a prime location right in the middle of the restaurant complex and swimming pools area, with a beautiful view of the gardens. Unlike a lot of hotels, we had a lot of space, a sofa and chairs in the room and the most spacious bathroom with a bath as well. 

The grounds were amazing. Nothing felt cramped or close together. There was a lot green garden spaces and they were so vibrant. I loved all the palm trees. It was a really beautiful location. 
Unlike Jamaica, the pools here were beautiful. They were big and spacious, but it was also quite quiet which helped as well. I loved having room to swim around, with a lagoon type connection between them all. The swim up bar was just the pièce de résistance. They also did lots of activities in the pools with water polo, volleyball, aqua aerobics, aqua cycling and then fun things like water slides, inflatables and a foam party. I think my favourite aspect was the palm tree leaf parasols. The only downside is that they couldn't be moved or put down so they were stationary and the beds had to be moved around them. 

The added bonus of this hotel was that they also had a water park area. I was shocked at how quiet it was when we arrived. It was smaller than I expected but plenty of choice, with one pool plus a baby pool with baby slide area and then five further slide chutes. There was lots of shade and places to sit, plus the best part was that there was another buffet restaurant so we didn't have to leave and go back to the resort. They do provide free golf carts to go back and forth between the two resorts, but it was a nice 10 minute walk so we walked down, instead of waiting. 
The other place you could also go during the day, was of course the beach. The beach was literally next to the pools, so it was lovely and close by. It was a private beach so there weren't as many people trying to sell things, just the company that the resort let in. 
The biggest selling point about the hotel was the sheer number of restaurants. They have 2 buffets for breakfast, 3 open for lunch, and then 2 buffet restaurants for dinner, alongside 9 specialty restaurants: Italian, American, Brazilian, Beach Bar, Mexican, Mediterranean, Steakhouse, Japanese and Sushi Bar. Of course, we didn't get a chance to do them all, but nevertheless, there was such a variety. I really enjoyed the Brazilian restaurant but just two hours later I was down with D+V quite significantly, which sadly lasted the rest of the holiday.  

My biggest complaint - outside the food poisoning - was the shows. For a 4+ star hotel, they were the worst I'd ever seen. They were very gimmicky. The first we missed as mum was tired and we were waiting for some maintenance issues to be fixed in the room, but that one did look good as it was a circus show and they even had a trapeze and aerial act set up when we walked past. The second was a “Playback Show” which was advertised more as a singing some and ended up being a very low end set up of lip syncing. The dancing wasn’t great, the lip syncing was bad and each song went on for far too long. Turns out, all the shows were like that, just with different "themes". They would just bring out really random props at the end of the song, which added absolutely nothing to the performance. For example, in one they had parasols come out for the find pose and in another a grainy glow stick circle which they just stood inside. They were all very repetitive and used far too much smoke and fire. So much so, half the time you can barely see the performers. Especially as the stage lighting wasn't always that great. 

Overall, whilst I was well, I had the most amazing time. I loved all the activities around the hotel and the resort itself was beautiful. The staff were lovely and accommodating. The restaurants were plentiful, easy to book and tasty and there were so many places to go to relax. Unfortunately, I only managed to enjoy it for a total of 4 days, before being poorly in bed for the remaining three and I struggle to recommend somewhere I got so poorly. I won't go into too much detail but it's honestly changed my life since. I still don't feel recovered back to normal.