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Balcones del Atlantico Resort, Las Terranas, Dominican Republic

Balcones del Atlantico Overview

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating


Balcones del Atlantico Resort, Las Terranas, Dominican Republic

Morning at Balcones del Atlantico resort.

© Bob Curley
This Rock Resorts property brings luxury accommodations and world-class dining to the low-key Samana Peninsula beach town of Las Terranas. One-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments feature full kitchens with Viking appliances, ample room for dining and lounging, and of course the spacious balconies that give the resort its name. The beach, restaurant and beach bar are across the street, and town is just a short moped ride away.

Balcones del Atlantico Rooms

One thing you'll never lack for at Balcones del Atlantico is elbow room: the apartments -- most of which are owned by Dominicans and rented to visitors -- are spacious, with the largest topping out at over 4,000 square feet. Our two-bedroom penthouse unit sprawled over two floors, with a full-sized kitchen equipped with Viking appliances and natural stone countertops. Each bedroom had its own private bath with a tiled, walk-in shower. Bedrooms also both had flat-panel HDTVs, although oddly there was no TV in any common areas of our apartment, so family movie night wasn't really an option.

The balconies are huge, however, so if you want your whole group to spend some time outdoors there's plenty of sitting and eating space. Upstairs, the penthouse included a jacuzzi tub, a dining table, a pair of high chairs overlooking the resort, and a third bed (in a small but air-conditioned room) for couples who want to escape for some romance while the kids are asleep downstairs.

If you come to Balcones, you probably need to think of it more as an apartment plus some hotel amenities and not as a full-service resort. The property has only been a hotel for several months at this writing, and it sometimes shows. You won't find a hotel guide in the room (although there is a menu for room service), nor anything as simple as bottled water in the refrigerator. Instead, there's a big, water-cooler type jug of drinking water ... but no dispenser. There is daily housekeeping, and cookies are delivered to the room each night, but a request to fix a balky toilet and shower went unmet. Finally, you'll need to go to the local supermarket to stock up on food and drinks unless you want to be ordering constantly from Porto, the resort's restaurant.

Balcones del Atlantico Dining

One of the balconies that give this Las Terranas resort its name.

© Bob Curley
On the other hand, eating three meals a day at Porto would hardly be considered punishment. Under the direction of chef Bruno Toso, Porto serves some of the finest, freshest food you'll find anywhere in the Caribbean.

The restaurant is beautiful, a big open-air space right on the beach -- the perfect place to dine on fresh-off-the-boat lobster, snapper, shrimp, and other seafood. Toso's Peruvian heritage shines in the ceviche -- traditional or fried -- while his past work in Japanese restaurants shows up in the sashimi and a phenomenal grilled lobster served on a bed of fried rice.

The menu also features a selection of "sous vide" dishes, cooked in vacuum bags at minimal heat for long hours for maximum moistness and flavor retention. Cap your meal with an aperitif of homemade ginger limoncello, which is fermented under the beach sand right outside the restaurant.

Balcones del Atlantico Amenities and Activities

In addition to the excellent Porto restaurant, Balcones del Atlantico has a one-kilometer-long private beach with a beach bar, volleyball court, lounge chairs, and kayaks for guest use. The beach is across the street from the guest rooms. Closer by are a pair of pools -- one with a swim-up bar and adjacent hot tubs -- and a small playground.

Typical resort amenities like a spa and fitness center are currently lacking, but plans are on the table to add these in a future phase of development.

The town of Las Terranas is a short distance away, with shops, restaurants, and a popular fish market. Other local activities include excursions to the Limon Falls, ATV tours, paintball, whale watches, and tours of Los Haitises National Park.

Balcones del Atlantico Information

Pool at the Balcones del Atlantico resort.

© Bob Curley
Address: Balcones del Atlantico, Las Terranas, Samana, Dominican Republic
Phone: 866-617-ROCK or 809-240-5011
Fax: 809-227-0654
Website: http://balconesdelatlantico.rockresorts.com/
As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary services for review purposes. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy.

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