I stayed at Dreams Puerto Aventuras with my girlfriend from September 15 to 22, and it was as perfect as you could ask for! It was both our our first time staying at an all-inclusive resort, my girlfriend’s first time on a plane, first time leaving Canada, and first time seeing the ocean. You could say that it was definitely a vacation full of firsts!
We had a room on the 6th floor with a view of the adults-only pool area, the marina, and the dolphins. The king-sized bed was extremely comfortable, comparable to my own at home, and it had a canopy. If you don’t like the pillows, they will bring you several options. Our mini fridge was always restocked with ice cold Coronas, bottled water, and a variety of soda in glass bottles. The bathroom was full of high-end products and the shower was massive with a bench seat. The balcony was great to sit on and relax, and I found this side of the resort was much quieter than the beach side. Even though this room category is not considered “ocean view” we still had a view of the ocean in the distance past the marina. We also could see the sunset every evening. The room had an iPod dock which was a very nice touch – we could listen to our vacation playlist every time we were in our room. The hotel itself has an open air concept and was very refreshing.
The service at Dreams was unlike anything I have ever experienced. Everyone, from the servers in the restaurant, the concierge, even the gardeners were smiling and friendly. They really bend over backwards to make sure you are having an amazing time, anything you need you just ask and they are more than happy to oblige. The staff are always busy fixing this and cleaning that – they really work hard here to impress. As soon as we stepped off the transfer bus we were greeted with a platter of champagne and cold towels, we felt like we were nearly royalty. I know not all resorts will serve you in your beach chairs, but this one they do! Erika was our favorite on the beach and made sure we were well-hydrated the entire time.
There are several bars to choose from at this property. We spent most of our time at Manatees, which is the swim up bar in the adults only pool. There are these awesome lounge chairs partially submerged in the water that are great for relaxing on and staying cool. BARracuda was the other favorite, they have several swings surrounding it for chilling on and watching the waves crash against the deck. Inside they have a disco style bar that has a few big screens for watching games on, and some nights they had a dance party that we enjoyed with a good mix of music, the music videos for the dance tracks play on the screens in a compilation, very cool. The frozen cocktails are very well made and with premium liquor, we both loved the Miami Vice. There is a wide selection of beers to choose from, I found a new favorite called Pacifico which was my staple during the trip. I also quite enjoyed the house red wine they serve here with my dinner, no need for me to order a bottle and pay extra money.
The food was always good. I am not really a fan of buffets, but this one was well appointed there and I had a few breakfasts selections. Good eggs, sausage, etc. and a massive selection of delicious fruit. There was also this little “to go” station on your way out of the dining room for mixing your own drinks and a champagne bucket with OJ for mimosas. One afternoon they brought out a huge grill and did this great surf and turf BBQ meal, very fresh and tasty. The Italian restaurant Portofino was by far my favorite meal I had there, the chicken cutlet was unreal. The best atmosphere was in the Mexican spot El Patio, it has a massive ceiling with the traditional thatched roof and the dim lighting really sets the mood. On our last night we ate at Gohan, the sushi bar, and we were extremely surprised by the quality. I have eaten sushi at several authentic restaurants in Toronto and the GTA and this was up to par with those if not better. There was also this cheese appetizer that had a Asian/Mexican fusion with the chipotle sauce, delicious! Also, we never had to make reservations and only waited for a table once, and it was only about 5 minutes at the Italian restaurant.
The activities on this resort are plentiful, but it is just as easy to relax and do nothing but eat, drink, and take naps. The water was too rough most of our trip for the main water activities, but we got to snorkel a few times and there is this awesome natural rock pool in the ocean that is very calm even when the water is choppy. Several colorful fish to see. They also offered some free scuba lessons in the pool with full gear but I never partook. The entertainment team was great, always getting people into beach volleyball or water aerobics, but were never too pushy if you just wanted to relax. They even came and partied with us in the disco at night, really got the dancing started! The shows were always good, my favorite was the classic rock one that featured a live local rock band in the theater and some cool circus style tricks. There is tons to do for the kids, but even though this is a family oriented resort we were never overwhelmed travelling as a couple. The adult side is great to getaway for some quiet time but most of the action is on the beach side at the main pool. For excursions, the resort is located about a 30 minute cab ride to either Tulum or Playa del Carmen, both which I recommend checking out. You can also walk and leave the grounds and tour Puerto Aventuras, it is a very safe, gated marina community and there are a few small shops and even a golf course.
I highly recommend this resort to families but couples will enjoy it just as much as we did. We had an amazing time and will definitely return for out next trip to the Mayan Riviera.