Swim-up bars, golf, virtually
unlimited beach access and a
variety of restaurants are just
some of the amenities offered
at the Dominican Republic’s
PARADISUS PUNTA CANA
All-Inclusive Five-Night Vacation!
By T. Foster Jones
MENTION THE Dominican Republic to
someone on the East Coast and you’ll get a
nod and a knowing smile. Mention it to
someone on the West Coast and you’ll likely
get a “Huh?” in response.
Located about 45 minutes by plane west
of Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic (DR)
is a Caribbean destination that has been well
known in certain circles. Thanks to an increasing number of flights from other points in the
United States (Delta, for instance, offers daily
nonstop flights from its Atlanta hub, with convenient connections from the West Coast), the
word is finally getting around to the rest of us.
Luxury resorts, championship golf courses
and spas, plus hundreds of miles of silky-fine
white-sand beaches and turquoise waters, are
helping to turn the DR into the latest five-star
playground of the Caribbean.
Much of the recent development has centered on the east-coast beach area of Punta
Cana, an area made up primarily of large all-inclusive resorts. Popular with singles, couples
and families, the resorts of Punta Cana appeal
to anyone looking for a vacation where the
resort has everything and one never has to go
outside the gates—sort of a cruise-ship-on-land experience.
Frankly, I thought that being at an all-inclusive resort would be a bit claustrophobic.
I’m the kind of traveler who enjoys exploring;
I would expect to be happiest on the other
side of the gates.
The resorts in Punta Cana where I stayed
and visited, however, are so big and so filled
with land and water activities, nighttime diversions and dining options that the thought of
escape never entered my mind.
For instance, at my home base, the
Paradisus Punta Cana, there are 10 world-class
restaurants, nine bars, four tennis courts, four
swimming pools, three paddle courts, a children’s play club, a spa and health club, a casino
and access to a championship golf course.
Activities include classes such as cooking, photography, dancing and wine tasting, as well as
nightly entertainment. All sporting activities,
including scuba diving and horseback riding,
are included in the price.
Punta Cana’s beach is certainly the main
attraction, stretching almost 35 miles. And
because most beaches are public, you can
stroll (or horseback ride) from one hotel’s
beachfront to another.
The array of water-sports options includes
catamaran boat rides, kayaking, double-decker
party boats, speedboats, windsurfing and para-sailing, glass-bottom boats for marine-life
observation, sport fishing, scuba diving (Punta
Cana features the island’s longest coral reef—
about 20 miles) and snorkeling.
Looking to become the Caribbean’s premier golf destination, the DR has more than
20 courses in use or planned, designed by the
likes of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Nick
Price, Nick Faldo and Tom Fazio.
On the other hand, if you don’t mind losing a day at your resort (and, truthfully, I
found myself increasingly reluctant to leave),
Punta Cana and nearby Puerto Plata are ripe
Ocean World, located at the beautiful
beach of Confresi, offers a variety of interactive programs with dolphins, sea lions and
other tropical wildlife. Jurassic Safari lets you
explore the inland—touring sugarcane plantations, mountains, rivers and villages. A visit
to the enchanting capital city of Santo
Domingo includes the first cathedral in the
New World and strolling through the Colonial
Quarter. And Saona Island is part of the
Eastern National Park, a natural reserve filled
with the beauty of the local flora and fauna.
Spending a week in Punta Cana will significantly reduce your DR “Huh?” factor. C
• Round-trip ground transportation
from airport to hotel
• Deluxe Junior Suite
• All meals and beverages
• One complimentary
25-minute massage –
a Costco member exclusive!
• Non-motorized water sports
• Horseback riding
• Scuba diving
• 24-hour room service
• Hotel taxes and services charges
Executive Members purchase
one spa treatment and receive
the second spa treatment free.
(A value of up to $168!)
From $732 per person*
Valid for travel 9/1 – 10/31/07.
MUST BOOK BY 6/30/07.
Ask about upgrading to Royal
Service for adults only or Family
Concierge service for families.
Visit costco.com or
call Costco Travel toll free
Ask about adding
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC MINIS TR Y OF TOURISM
The Costco Connection
For more information, call 1-877-849-2730
or visit costco.com and click on “Travel.”
For information regarding new passport
requirements, please visit www.travel.state.gov.
*Price is per person based on double occupancy and includes hotel
taxes. Price is valid for travel as specified. Prices and inclusions are
subject to change without notice. Executive Member offer is valid for
primary cardholder only. Travel purchases are not included in the
Executive Membership 2% Reward program. Seasonal surcharges,
availability, blackout dates and restrictions may apply. All prices are in
U.S. dollars. Costco Travel disclaims liability for any inaccuracies or
typographical errors. Costco Travel is a registered seller of travel and
travel agency in the following states: Washington (WST 602042600);
Ohio (8789302); Florida (Fla. Seller of Travel Reg. No.ST32555); and
California (CST 2054248-50). Registration as a seller of travel does not
constitute approval by the state of California. 07TR0604_B 4/07