Sanctuary Cap Cana Overview – The Factors Man

It had been a very long time since I would stayed at an all-inclusive resort within the Caribbean, so final yr, when a pair of buddies introduced their engagement — together with plans to get married at Sanctuary Cap Cana, the first-ever Marriott Luxurious Assortment all-inclusive resort — I jumped on the alternative to attend. I used to be to see if the property would upend my impression of all-inclusive resorts as uninspired resorts with mediocre meals and an excessive amount of low cost alcohol.

Spoiler alert: It did simply that, as we had a terrific (albeit too quick) keep.

This is every part you’ll want to learn about visiting Sanctuary Cap Cana.

Associated: Greatest all-inclusive resorts within the Dominican Republic

What’s Sanctuary Cap Cana?

Sanctuary Cap Cana is an adults-only, all-inclusive resort within the Dominican Republic, lower than 20 minutes south of the Punta Cana Worldwide Airport (PUJ). Although the property has been round for greater than 15 years, it did not grow to be part of Marriott Bonvoy till the autumn of 2022 — and it could not open till early 2023 as a result of impacts of Hurricane Fiona.

Associated: 19 stress-free adults-only, all-inclusive resorts for a kid-free trip

It is now a part of Marriott’s Luxurious Assortment, permitting Marriott loyalists to earn and redeem factors on their stays.

The best way to ebook Sanctuary Cap Cana


The resort has its personal web site, however as a Luxurious Assortment property, you can even ebook immediately via Marriott’s customary channels — together with and the Marriott Bonvoy app. Doing so will make sure you earn Marriott factors on your keep, although my expertise exhibits that you could be nonetheless earn factors via different websites.

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The couple getting married employed a journey adviser to assist company with their journey preparations and resort reservations, together with a block of rooms at a reduced fee. Sadly, the group contract required a minimal of three nights, and work schedules meant that my spouse and I’d solely be there for 2. Fortunately, the resort was nonetheless in a position to provide a reduction of about $80 per night time in contrast with reserving via Marriott, so we opted to make the most of that possibility and forgo the factors.

We wound up paying $540 per night time for a Citadel Junior Suite (extra on the room under), which might’ve been $620 via Marriott.

At check-in, I used to be allowed so as to add my Marriott quantity to the reservation, and after the keep, I did earn 7,779 factors (5,186 base factors and a couple of,593 as a Platinum member). This meant that just one night time of the keep was posted to my Bonvoy account — although since technically I wasn’t eligible to earn any factors, I took these for the reward that they have been and did not submit a declare for added factors.

In case you’re trying to ebook Sanctuary Cap Cana, charges for 2 adults in 2024 begin at $456 per night time (principally in July and August), however they will strategy $1,000 per night time within the winter. And regardless of Marriott’s 2022 implementation of dynamic award pricing, a free night time is persistently 120,000 factors (for one, two or three adults).

Notice that charges are typically the identical on the resort’s web site and thru Marriott — although if you happen to do not care about incomes factors, there are a couple of interesting causes to ebook immediately with Sanctuary: The property runs particular promotions that may prevent cash, and reserving immediately consists of financial savings on spa therapies and different add-ons throughout your keep.

Rooms and suites at Sanctuary Cap Cana

The luxurious resort boasts 324 complete rooms and villas spanning 19 totally different classes, however the smallest junior suite nonetheless spans 646 sq. toes, making certain that each one company have loads of house to calm down. Sadly, 19 room varieties can create a number of confusion with regards to choosing one.

The very first thing to notice is that the resort is technically divided into three areas. The principle buildings are thought of the “Colonial” part, whereas there is a separate space referred to as the “Citadel” part that is meant to be a extra unique enclave inside the resort. Citadel rooms embrace a separate check-in space plus VIP providers upon arrival, together with a bottle of glowing wine within the room, butler service and help with unpacking and packing your baggage. Some even embrace swim-out entry to a pool that wraps across the Citadel part.

Lastly, there are roughly two dozen villas scattered throughout the property, providing much more house (they begin at over 1,100 sq. toes).

For the reason that wedding ceremony and reception have been occurring within the Citadel part, we opted to ebook the oceanfront Citadel Junior Suite — and we have been glad we did.

Our 840-square-foot room was on the bottom flooring and was cut up roughly in half between the dwelling space and bed room. Fortunately, although, there wasn’t a wall between the 2 parts — only a TV shelf that jutted out from the wall, a vertical assist column on the other facet and a darkish wooden horizontal beam (with recessed lighting) overhead.

I used to be instantly struck by the welcoming seaside vibes of white and cream with blue accents — but the darkish wooden trims added a contact of luxurious that was hanging but understated on the similar time.

We have been grateful for the big sitting space, as we took our (complimentary) room service breakfast there on Saturday morning.


A relaxing bottle of glowing wine and a small field of sweets have been ready for us — and the minifridge had additionally been stocked with water, sodas and Dominican beers forward of our arrival.

The lavatory was an honest dimension, together with his-and-her sinks, a soaking tub and a separate bathe — which was stocked with toiletries (and replenished all through our keep).

However the actual deal with of the room was what ready simply outdoors the sliding glass doorways.

Ordinarily, I am not a fan of ground-floor lodging, preferring the views from rooms on greater flooring. Nevertheless, a ground-level junior suite within the Citadel part of Sanctuary Cap Cana meant a big terrace full with two chairs and a small desk plus two snug chaise loungers.

From there, a picket walkway successfully served as a bridge over some sandy water that might refill at excessive tide, and past that, a large grassy space gave strategy to sweeping japanese views of the Caribbean Sea.

It was the right “residence base” for our keep.

Meals and drinks at Sanctuary Cap Cana

As an all-inclusive property, your whole meals and drinks throughout the property are included (with a few minor exceptions), and there’s a vary of choices from which to choose. The first restaurant was Casa Bella, the buffet possibility within the coronary heart of the Colonial part that served breakfast and lunch seven days every week (plus dinner on Fridays). I have to admit that I’ve by no means been a giant fan of buffets, however this one far exceeded expectations.

Our first meal there was lunch, which featured an enormous number of stations — together with a salad bar, a number of forms of ceviche, made-to-order Asian stir fry, an array of desserts and even a gelato case.

For sure, we didn’t depart hungry.

We went again to Casa Bella on Sunday morning for breakfast earlier than leaving for the airport, and once more, we have been impressed by the choice. Past conventional gadgets like eggs, hash browns and sausage, you could possibly get made-to-order omelets, construct your individual salad or carb-load with a wide range of breakfast pastries.

Simply outdoors was a mimosa bar with six totally different juice picks.

The large factor to notice about Casa Bella is that a lot of the meals wasn’t assist your self; as a substitute, it was behind a glass partition and served upon request by Sanctuary employees members. Within the aftermath of the pandemic, that was a refreshing possibility.

Past Casa Bella, there are 4 specialty eating places:

  • Blue Marlin — a seafood restaurant open for lunch and dinner
  • Wok — an Asian restaurant serving sushi and teppanyaki-style meals for dinner (closed Tuesdays)
  • Capriccio — an Italian restaurant open for dinner
  • The Steak Home — an American steakhouse serving dinner (closed Fridays)

Sadly, we solely have been in a position to strive Blue Marlin throughout our two-night keep, as the opposite dinner was served on the wedding ceremony reception. Nonetheless, we loved our meal on the open-air deck over the water, together with the fried calamari and grilled octopus — together with a serenade from the native band.

It is value noting that each one 4 of those eating places have a “Informal-Elegant” costume code; extra on that under.

In case you’re feeling snackish outdoors of regular meal instances, there are a number of choices:

  • Seize a chew at La Yola Snack Grill, simply off the primary pool. We stopped by there shortly after arrival since we have been hungry, and we loved a few Dominican Yaniqueques — that are served extra like mushy tacos at Sanctuary.
  • Head as much as Ocean Bar within the Citadel part, serving a small menu of snacks together with cocktails subsequent to the small Citadel pool.
  • Go to the espresso store within the foyer for a caffeinated beverage and/or pastry of your alternative.
  • Order room service, obtainable 24-7.

We took benefit of room service our first morning, having fun with an omelet and a Dominican breakfast alongside tea and occasional, all from the consolation and privateness of our room.

In fact, one huge attraction of all-inclusive properties is the truth that alcoholic drinks are included, and at Sanctuary Cap Cana, there is no scarcity of libations — whether or not swimming as much as Freshco Bar on the essential pool, ordering a frozen drink or smoothie on the beachside Vacation spot bar or grabbing a pre-dinner cocktail at Love Bar, a piano bar in the primary foyer.

Lastly, if the above choices (by some means) depart you wanting extra, take into account a jaunt to Sanctuary City, the on-property village that options a number of further eating shops — together with a burger joint, an Italian spot, a sushi restaurant and a sweet store. Solely Rincon de Paco, the Spanish restaurant, requires an extra cost for company.

These institutions are solely open for dinner, and whereas we did not get an opportunity to strive any of them, it is nice to have extra informal choices for these not searching for a proper, sit-down dinner.

Past the room and eating choices, many different issues stood out throughout our keep.

The property itself is beautiful

If the feel and appear of a resort is vital to you, Sanctuary Cap Cana has you coated. We have been amazed at how beautiful the grounds have been, and the employees clearly took delight in sustaining that magnificence.

From the foyer to the pool areas to the walkways, simply strolling across the resort put us in trip mode — earlier than we even become our bathing fits or put a chilly beverage in our fingers.

I am going to let the photographs converse for themselves right here.

Past the decor, I cherished the actual fact that there have been six swimming swimming pools — and regardless of what appeared to be comparatively excessive occupancy, I by no means noticed any of them even near full.

We cherished our time within the Citadel part

Staying within the Citadel part was a beautiful expertise for us, ranging from the second we arrived and have been whisked away in a golf cart to the personal check-in space.

Do not be fooled by the unassuming exterior. Simply inside was a double-ceilinged foyer with greenery accents that added to the texture of being in a real-life fortress.


After checking in, we have been handed frozen coconut-and-lime drinks at Ocean Bar, which we loved within the air-con.

The principle pool on this space of the resort is elevated, offering sweeping views of the ocean. We visited twice and located it to be a haven from the extra occasion ambiance of the primary pool space.


Our assigned butler — Eric — confirmed us to our room, and he insisted that I program his quantity into WhatsApp, as that is what we used all through our keep for requests like further bottles of water and choosing up our baggage earlier than checkout.

And whereas we did not have a personal plunge pool, the placement of our Citadel junior suite was spectacular, because it was separated sufficient from the remainder of the resort to really feel personal — although additionally a brief stroll of simply 5-7 minutes to succeed in the remainder of the motion.

Do not skip the spa (and hydrotherapy circuit)


My spouse loves a great spa, and I am a prepared companion in crime, so we booked the 90-minute “Higher Collectively” bundle. This included an 80-minute therapeutic massage for every of us but additionally gave us an hour to benefit from the hydrotherapy circuit.

This was a brand new expertise for me, however the facility featured a sauna, scorching tub, steam room, chilly pool and dynamic pool, permitting you to energise your physique by exposing it to totally different environments and temperatures.

I’ve no clue if I did them within the optimum order and even obtained to all of them, however it was an effective way to destress. It additionally helped that your entire spa facility was beautiful.

You possibly can keep as busy (or as laid again) as you need

One other wonderful thing about Sanctuary Cap Cana is that you may pack your day filled with issues to do, lay round doing nothing or discover a mixture of the 2. In addition to indulging in scrumptious meals and drinks throughout your keep, the property affords many actions as a part of its all-inclusive bundle — together with yoga lessons, bike excursions, seaside volleyball, water aerobics and extra. There was even nightly leisure, although our wedding ceremony festivities prevented us from collaborating in any of those.

Shortly earlier than our keep, we have been despatched a QR code to obtain the resort’s digital concierge, which, when added to your cell phone’s residence display screen, primarily features as an app to evaluation every part the resort has to supply.

The QR code to entry Sanctuary Cap Cana’s digital concierge. SANCTUARY CAP CANA

When you have an upcoming keep, be happy to discover what’s on faucet earlier than your arrival.

Carry respectable apparel for dinner

As famous beforehand, the upscale eating places all have a “Informal-Elegant” costume code. This implies slacks, a collared shirt and closed-toed footwear for males. Girls have some added flexibility, although the property nonetheless requires costume sandals or closed footwear.

Sadly, we did not know this forward of time. In consequence, when the Friday night time seaside reception wrapped up, many wedding ceremony company have been hungry and headed towards Blue Marlin (the property’s seafood restaurant). Nevertheless, given our apparel, we have been informed they could not accommodate us. Fortunately, the employees in the end acquiesced and allowed us to sit down, however it was admittedly fairly irritating to should struggle that battle in any respect.

The property does a fantastic job with weddings

Past simply visiting the property for trip, I would extremely advocate Sanctuary Cap Cana as a vacation spot wedding ceremony spot based mostly on our expertise.

Friday night time was a welcome reception on the seaside — no footwear allowed. The drinks flowed freely, and the resort had even arrange a personalised “canoe” of beers for the grooms.


It was so peaceable to attach with buddies whereas the light Caribbean waves crashed on the seaside behind us.


The ceremony on Saturday was held in a lobby within the Citadel part, making for a particular backdrop as Tyler and Bradon tied the knot.


Cocktail hour was upstairs on the Ocean Bar, which provided phenomenal views over the water.


Then the primary occasion was again downstairs in a big ballroom, full with a buffet that rivaled any wedding ceremony we might been to.

All through all of it, the employees took nice care of not simply the grooms and the marriage occasion however all the company, making for a memorable celebration.

Solely burn your Marriott factors in particular conditions

As famous beforehand, free nights at Sanctuary Cap Cana are persistently 120,000 factors per night time. And this worth holds whether or not you may have one grownup, two adults or three adults within the room (something extra and also you’re pressured into a bigger room that is not obtainable as a redemption). With paid charges that usually hover within the $500-700 vary, this is not a fantastic use of factors.

Nevertheless, paid charges at Sanctuary Cap Cana improve as you add a second after which a 3rd grownup to the room — so this may make it a greater possibility. And whenever you layer in Marriott’s fifth-night-free profit on award stays, you could come out forward.

For instance, a five-night keep from Sunday, March 31, via Friday, April 5, would set you again $4,479 for 3 adults in an oceanview junior suite.


That very same room can be 480,000 factors — providing you with a redemption worth of 0.93 cents per level.


Not solely is that this above our valuation of Marriott factors; however you are additionally getting your whole meals, drinks and lots of actions included.

I would solely advocate utilizing Marriott factors when the paid charges are excessive, and you may have at the least two adults within the room. In any other case, I would strongly take into account reserving the room as a paid keep and banking your Marriott factors for a future redemption.

You want greater than two nights

In case it wasn’t clear, we missed out on a lot throughout our keep. We solely obtained to strive one of many specialty eating places, and we did not partake in any of the on-property actions. I walked via Sanctuary City however did not pattern any of the meals. A part of this was due to the marriage festivities, however we have been additionally on the resort grounds for lower than 48 hours.

Merely put, it wasn’t sufficient time.

In case you’re contemplating a visit to Sanctuary Cap Cana, I would counsel an absolute minimal of three nights, however 4 or 5 can be even higher. The overwhelming majority of the marriage company had carved out extra time for his or her journeys, however as a consequence of work commitments and childcare limitations, we could not. And we remorse it.


From an accessibility standpoint, we have been fairly impressed with Sanctuary Cap Cana. The bottom flooring of the Citadel constructing led out to a stone walkway (no stairs concerned) that took you proper to the primary space of the resort, together with Casa Bella, Blue Marlin, the seaside and the primary pool space. Two of the swimming pools have been additionally zero entry, and there have been intensive wheelchair-friendly elevators throughout the property — although they have been smaller within the Citadel space.

The property affords a number of ground-floor suites which are totally outfitted for company with particular bodily wants. Options embrace bathtub grab-rails, roll-in showers, alarm clock and phone ring signalers, lowered door deadbolts and lowered shops. Service animals are welcome at Sanctuary Cap Cana.

Trying out of Sanctuary Cap Cana

Our time at Sanctuary Cap Cana got here to an finish means too quickly, and like our arrival, we had organized for shared transportation again to the airport via the grooms’ journey advisor. The pleasant resort employees picked up our baggage at 10:15 a.m. forward of our 10:30 departure, and after settling our invoice (for the spa therapy), we have been on our means.

As we pulled out of the resort, we tried not to think about the opposite company, a lot of whom have been simply beginning their days and looking out ahead to hours of leisure. However that simply means we’ll have to plan a return journey — this time for for much longer.

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