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After working 16-hour days all summer long last summer, we did like adults do and saved up some money. Not for a down payment on a house or to pay some boring bills, but to go on a week-long, all-inclusive vacation at the Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

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Once we stepped on hotel property, all our worries were forgotten and all we were worried about was getting to the beach and absorbing the Caribbean heat into our pasty New England skin. Although our room wasn’t ready when we arrived (we did arrive at 10am and check-in was at 1pm), we enjoyed the Club Premium lounge were endless snacks and drinks are provided while you wait. Walking around the hotel, we slowly took note of everything we wanted to do that week: beach, sand, beach, restaurant, food, beach.

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Club Premium Lounge

Once in our room, we relaxed and dropped our luggage. This for us is the moment vacation begins – the moment once you’re in the comfort of your own hotel room and get to settle in for the week. Some travelers say vacation starts for them the moment they get on the plane, but not us. We’re all about hotel rooms.

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And our room was gorgeously simple with great amenities that were replenished twice a day, with a night-time turn down service. At around 7pm, housekeeping delivers a sweet treat like cake bites, brownies, truffles, and fresh fruit; they also “turn down” your sheets so it’s easier to slip into bed. Double sinks and a rainforest style shower, it would become our home sweet home for an entire week!

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Equipped with a coffee maker and mini bar, those were great to have but you know what was the favorite part of the room (which I have not ONE picture of?!): the jacuzzi on the balcony! Perfect way to end the day!

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This state of the art spa center was our second home! It included an outdoor pool with water therapies that M. loved, hydrotherapy circuit, thermal swimming pools, sauna and steam rooms, a variety of showers, and a terrace with sun loungers. Seriously, a dream come true!

Deciding to treat myself during this week, I also booked an Algae Body Massage that was divine. Starting with a mineral scrub, the best part was being covered in a clay mask and then wrapped in plastic while she massaged my head. I was in HEAVEN. Finalizing with a relaxing massage and then being led to a gorgeous sitting area while you’re still in your robe – still in heaven. Tea and cookies are served while you relax with a warm beaded pillow on your shoulders. Definitely worth the $100 and something bucks!

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Spending the day walking around the grounds, taking in the fresh ocean air and basically just falling asleep on the beach was a dream come true.
And with 11 restaurants on property, we dined at a different one each night. As with most all-inclusive resorts, food is a big issue – putting out massive amounts of food and the details are forgotten. Sure, the food was good but it wasn’t the best ever. Proteins were mostly overcooked and in general, we weren’t incredibly impressed. We did agree that the variety of restaurants gave the guest great options on where to dine, and we tried their Spanish, Japanese, International, and Mexican restaurants, among others.
For breakfast and lunch, we noshed on food at the Dominican buff style restaurant which had some great basic foods like the classic rice and beans, as well as a splash of International foods like a pasta station, meat carving stations, and a massive dessert display. Since we spent our days on the beach, we did wish there was an eatery on the beach with quick bites like pizza or burgers to grab while still in your swimsuit. 
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Most nights were spent listing to the orchestra in the hotel next to ours – connected and a part of our own hotel as well. Afterwards we’d walk around the property, relaxing. We did a lot of that – relaxing and it felt oh so good! Overall, we enjoyed that exactly, the fact that we were able to relax, take naps on the beach, nosh on some food, and enjoy gorgeous days! Definitely check out the Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe if you’re looking into the all-inclusive hotels in Punta Cana.
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Disclosure: Although the Bavaro Palace Deluxe was generous enough to upgrade us to “Club Premium”status, this trip was not sponsored by them. We’re sharing what we loved just because of that – cause we loved it!

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  1. That room looks awesome! After a long summer, you both truly deserved this wonderful get away! Each meal looks delicious! Hugs, Terra

  2. I like your priority list — beach, sand, beach, restaurant, food, beach. 🙂 Can we say “ahhhhhhhhh?” So glad you had a relaxing, rejuvenating time!

  3. What a gorgeous post! Thank you for sharing your relaxing holiday with us!!! I will put the Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe on my list of “travel hot spots” 🙂

  4. Beautiful photos! And an orchestra! I can’t think of the last time I’ve heard an orchestra playing at night. Thanks for sharing these.