Taxi from airport: US$40; or hotel transfer (shared, minimum:2 people): US$15 - will take 20/25 minutes.
798 rooms and suites.
Located towards the end of the Bavaro Beach, the immaculate palm tree lined, white sand beach has to rank about the best anywhere.
In comparison to some of the mega hotel complexes along the Bavaro Beach, this is a more contained resort that can be covered easily on foot (see map). It is an isolated resort for those wanting a true all-inclusive stay. If you like long walks down the beach, other than the front of other resorts you would have to go a good 10 Km before you came to any independent activity in the form of bars and eating places; along the way and by the other resorts you'll come across the same type of vendors that sell near the Occidental Caribe. If you insist on leaving the resort, take a taxi to a Shopping Centre, which will cost around US$30 each way.
Barcelo bought the property in 2008 and has been renovating it. Blocks 1, 2, & 3 are ready. However, they are near the casino, the 24-hour bar, and the amphitheatre used for the evening shows. The blocks on the opposite side, near the pool, should be quieter if you want to retire to bed early. The hotel has 80% of the rooms facing the sea, which is a record among the Bavaro resorts.
The help-yourself buffet is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner; a pizzeria works from 12am to 2pm; in the afternoon you have a snack-bar your disposal; and in the evening there are six a-la-carte restaurants, three of which are non-smoking.
To lose some of the pounds you are going to acquire with all the food and drink around you, there are good sports facilities with the resort's own tennis courts and three golf courses nearby, to complement all the water activities offered on the beach.
Wi-Fi is not free and the charge depends on the number of days of the stay: for one week it is US$50; or US$12 per day. However, if you choose a Club Premium service (you must book a suite), it is included. You may also pay for an upgrade on arrival, which you can negotiate and be as low as $20 per day, if the hotel is far from full. The Club Premium gives further advantages with access to exclusive services.
The Barcelo hotels publish great offers in their website that apart from reduced rates may include extras like free airport pick-up, and free Wi-Fi. Bear in mind that Barcelo guarantees the lowest on-line rates, and allows you to cancel without any penalty. Check the rate for your intended stay in their website (via the link below) as it also shows a rate comparison with major hotel booking agencies like Hotels.com, Expedia, and Orbitz. Then, look around to see if you can get something cheaper, with the same extras, but please come back here if you don't...