Tgm + Tmr - May 2023 Impressions

Discussion in 'Temptation Miches Grand' started by ash09, May 17, 2023.

  1. ash09

    ash09 Enthusiast Registered Member

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    Quick impressions from mine and @Ragekage first visit to the Miches locations and experience with the Desire concept - just returned today.
    • Cancun is 20* above the equator. Miches is 18* above the equator. That makes a huge difference in terms of humidity and temperature - for the same week, Miches was about 5* F hotter than Cancun, and a bajillion times more humid.
    • Don't be put off by the weather forecast with rain every day. Miches is much like Florida where there's just a 3 pm afternoon rainstorm every day due to humidity. Out of the 3-4 days we were out in the rain in the afternoon, it only thundered and lightning'ed one of those days.
    • Virgin beach and land also means ALL THE MOSQUITOES. K and I both got about 10 bug bites each. Bring the bug spray, or sunblock with bug spray, and the cortisone.
    • Our drivers to/from the airport were able to make the seemingly 85-90 min drive in about 65-75 mins, because speeding and passing. The timeshare sales person at the resort noted that the traffic will continue to get worse as time goes on due to more construction in the area.
    • The difference between Cancun and Miches is a bit like Disneyland vs. Disney World. Disneyland being the first had the truest realization of Walt's original vision but was constrained by space. Disney World, like Miches, is not space constrained and is what Cancun could/should/wishes it could be if it had more space. HOWEVER: there is barely any one at Miches, unlike the packed crowds of Disney World.
     
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  2. ash09

    ash09 Enthusiast Registered Member

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    Part 1 of the trip report from our stay (K and I) at Grand Miches for 7 nights in mid-May 2023 in one of the entry level rooms, the Intimacy Tropical View Jacuzzi category, although we ended up spending the majority of our time at regular Temptation Miches (TMR).

    Disclaimers/preface before the trip review, which I tried to keep objective:
    • During this trip, I learned that I am not a nudist at heart and lukewarm at best on the clothing optional Desire concept. I don’t mind seeing tits, but I prefer not to see everyone’s bits.
    • My allergies kicked into high gear upon arriving in DR, and I spent the week a sneezing, coughing mess, which made it harder to fully enjoy vaca. Apparently this happens to some tourists, so bring the allergy medicine.
    Reservation and Payment
    We originally had a reservation at Temptation Miches (not Grand), which I made through the Premier website.

    Protip: both Miches resorts charge in local currency, so use a credit card with 0% foreign transaction fees (different from Cancun, which charges in USD).​

    Upgrade to Grand Miches
    2 months before our trip, K saw the following promo on the website for Grand, so I emailed Reservations and asked for a quote to switch the stay to a Grand Fantasy room and use the promo for the free upgrade to the Intimacy room. After some back and forth emails, the difference in price came out to an additional ~$111, so yes, we took it!

    upload_2023-5-29_10-34-50.png

    Reserving Ground Transportation to/from PUJ Airport
    See my post on the mess that was using the free airport transfer in the promo: Tips For Free Airport Transfer To Tgm Promo

    K booked our return to the airport through Expedia, which used www.taxi2airport.com, at about $80 one-way (h/t to this forum!), and the actual driver was from Solanch Transport - no complaints.


    Landing at PUJ
    International arrivals hall at PUJ is much more haphazard than at Cancun. It took us longer to get through the passport control line than at CUN, and we were among the first people to get off the plane. Once you clear immigration, just like at CUN, you will “run the gauntlet” of taxi hawkers - just ignore them and head towards the specified counter # for your transport company.

    Drive from PUJ to Miches
    Google Maps will say it’s roughly a 1.5 hr drive, but our drivers both ways were able to make it 65-75 mins. Sure, the scenery is nice, but it’s also not significantly different from driving through other developing countries or even rural areas of the US (albeit with different foliage), and it’s variations on a theme after the first 30 mins or so. My 2¢.

    Checking in at Grand
    Grand is laid out in multiple standalone buildings, with the lobby being its own building. Nothing to note about the check-in process, same as every other hotel. You will be shown a QR code to scan to download “The Little Black Book” PDF guide to Grand and given an overview of the resort by another employee. In my case, this person also scheduled my Premier membership update/sales meeting.

    Protip: they’ll say the sales meeting is only 20 mins to get you to agree, but it’s really the full hour - bait and switch tactic.​

    Room
    At check-in, we were introduced to our Butler, who took us to our room and gave us the lay of the land. The bizarre part of the routine came as our Butler was explaining all of the amenities in our room: he turned on the TV and flipped to the adult TV channels during that part of the explanation, and yes, there was adult programming on each of those channels.

    The Intimacy Jacuzzi room is really quite spacious. The bedroom area is slightly bigger than the Bash Tower rooms at TTR, with a similarly sized big couch, and extra space for the jacuzzi. The bathroom, however, is basically its own room, because it doubles as a walk-in closet area. K and I found that it was nice to have the suitcase off in its own room out of view, instead of haphazardly stood up in a corner like it is in Cancun.

    The beds are not the same kind of mattress as Cancun, which was disappointing. Cancun has these lovely foam mattresses, whereas both Miches resorts (we toured a TMR room as well) have this hybrid foam/spring mattress that feels very much like a soft spring mattress. The couch was super comfy and firm - I was tempted to sleep on that at several points!

    K and I only fired up the jacuzzi once during our week-long stay. It was nice, but the time to fill up the tub wasn’t really worth it, and it left the room kinda humid. Lesson learned for us: don’t splurge for the rooms with jacuzzis in them lol.

    K got a ton of use and enjoyment out of the outdoor patio couch; I preferred to stay indoors on the couch in the AC and away from the mosquitoes.

    Our observation on the speedy or hasty construction was that yes, there were small signs of it, like paint on doorknobs or windows that weren’t fully cleared off, but the rooms and facilities we visited were all fully functioning.

    Pool at Grand
    The pool at Grand has a TON of cabana beds. Yes, it is currently only topless optional, although when I did my sales meeting, the sales person said he thought that Grand would go “full Desire” in 4 months or so (aka: nudity by the pool).

    I personally found the pool layout/landscaping at Grand difficult to get comfortable in. At both regular Temptation resorts, the entire pool is tiled so it’s a relatively smooth, comfortable surface. At Grand, the pool is 95% the rough concrete surface, and its defining design feature is these humongous concrete cubes jutting out of the pool. Not a lot of shade, as others have noted, and no jacuzzi jets anywhere.

    Jacuzzi at Grand
    More accurate to call this a “large heated pool” than a jacuzzi, as there are no jets here. On several raining afternoons, we ran over from the TMR pool to warm up in the jacuzzi. Yes, there is nudity and public sex here. The majority of the pool area is exposed to sun and rain, so your stuff will get wet if you leave it out in the cabana beds or loungers when it rains.

    Gift Shops at Both Resorts
    The usual marked up in price goods are sold at either resort’s gift shop. We scoured both gift shops and could NOT find SPF above 5 when we nearly ran out towards the end of the trip. Plenty of after sun aloe if you’re burnt, but nothing to prevent it lol.

    Protip: bring more sunblock than you think you need; there’s none for sale in the gift shops.​

    Shared Beach Area
    Yes, this is a virgin, undeveloped beach. Unlike Cancun where you see hotels in either direction on the beach, all you see here is more foliage. The ocean water was the perfect warm temperature - just slightly below air temperature, so enough to cool off without freezing to death. This is technically not a topless area, as it is open to the public (we saw a small wedding happening on our first full day).

    Shared Spa
    The Exotic Spa at Grand is not operational. Instead, both resorts’ spa and gym are operated out of the Rose Spa facility at regular TMR. Depending on which hotel you’re staying at, you will get a different spa menu with different prices when you visit Rose Spa.

    As a Premier member, K and I got the complimentary 25 min relaxing massage - no complaints there. Facilities were nice, massage therapists were good, and we came out very relaxed. Separately, I also had an express facial appt - no complaints there either. I always enjoy my spa visits in general, and enjoyed the Miches appointments as much as I enjoy my Cancun ones.

    Protip: The hydro therapy facilities at Rose Spa were not open during our visit (the steam room, sauna, and jacuzzi/jets pool), which is something we use multiple times per trip at Cancun.​

    Food and Alcohol in General at Miches
    Overall, there are fewer dishes available at either Miches resort compared to Cancun - if Cancun has 30 dishes in the buffet line, Miches will have 15 to 20. There is no Wall O’Desserts at either resort (so sad, we both have sweet tooths that get indulged on vacation). What was available was generally tasty, though.

    Alcohol brands available at Miches are not as varied as Cancun, likely due to the challenges of importing to an island vs. down the same continent. Take vodka: the “top shelf” brands I recognized were Absolut and Stoli, no Grey Goose or anything more premium in sight.

    That said, give the local Dominican alcohol brands a fair shot. K and I both really enjoyed the local Dominican rum brand, Barcelo, which we found to be very smooth and tasty in rum and cokes and pina coladas. One of the bartenders at the Grand pool bar also gave us a shot of Mamajuana, which is “very sweet and very strong”. THIS is the stuff that will (to borrow from the very first timeshare salesperson at Cancun) “first, make your nipples pop, second, put hair on your chest, and third, make your man’s dick go UP!”

    On the non-alcoholic beverage front, the local coffee, Cafe Santo Domingo, is also VERY good, per K the caffeine addict - when we got home, he even ordered it off Amazon to enjoy at home! While there is regular Coke and Pepsi, K could not find diet versions of either for love or money at either resort, and similarly, I couldn’t get ginger ale.

    Coming in Part 2:
    • Impressions of restaurants at TGM and TMR
    • Playmakers
    • Guest Count and Vibe
    • Evening Activities and Show
    • General comments on things noted in other reviews
     
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  3. ash09

    ash09 Enthusiast Registered Member

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    Part 2 of the trip report…

    Restaurants at Grand
    Arrecife Breakfast Buffet: this was not open for dinner, despite it being listed as such, likely due to low occupancy. K and I had breakfast here our first morning and were underwhelmed, after which we tried the TMR breakfast buffet the next day and loved it much more. We ended up going to the Rain buffet at TMR for breakfast every day after.

    Tentazione Lunch Buffet / Grill Menu: The flow of this restaurant could be a little smoother. You have the option of both buffet and ordering off a limited menu (like the Sky Bar in Cancun), but when you’re seated, you’re handed the menu and asked what you’d like to order. If you don’t want a sandwich that day, then you tell the server or hostess “no” and go up to the buffet.

    Suki (Asian): We did 3 dinners here, 1 hibachi and 2 regular. I’ve done hibachi at home, but we’ve never done the hibachi at Cancun, so no point of comparison there. The hibachi chef was entertaining, and the food was tasty. It’s super easy to get a reservation for hibachi - they only had 1, maybe 2 seatings per night, with 6 to 8 guests at each seating.

    While I will eat almost any food, I am picky about what I consider “good”, and even more so when it comes to Asian food. The sashimi was great, but I found that the specialty sushi rolls tasted very “Western style” - less focus on the natural flavors of the ingredient, and more focus on being deep fried, covered in mayo, etc.

    Sahlo (Mediterranean and Premier Dinner): We ate here twice, and a third time as the Premier dinner is served out of this restaurant. This is one of the only restaurants on the TGM side that has a true outdoor dining room, as opposed to outdoor tables along the perimeter of the building. The menu reminded me of a blend of items from Romanza (Italian) and Flame (steakhouse) at Temptation. Food was good again, no complaints, just presented a little differently (i.e., tiramisu was about half the height/# of layers I see served at home, but no less tasty).

    Addiction Coffee Shop: Dominican coffee is THE S**T. The weird thing we found about the coffee shop is they serve food items on paper towels, not plates. I was handed tres leches cake on a paper towel and had to wash my hands afterwards lol.

    Restaurants at Temptation Miches
    Rain: We only went to Rain for the breakfast buffet, and we liked it so much more than the TGM breakfast buffet. Of a 7 night stay, only the last 2 breakfast buffets had hash browns and bacon, but K and I were both able to find our usual breakfast basics that we like to have at Temptation Cancun. I did notice that every night we were over on the TMR side for dinner, the Rain buffet was closed / not open for dinner.

    Amores: This is truly pool side in its own building, which is different than at Cancun where Amores is the other half of the dining room from Rain. It’s an entirely outdoor dining room, no A/C at all, and still keeps you part of the pool action. It’s open only for lunch when we were there - no dinner. The food’s not bad, but the dishes didn’t change very much from day to day - what you get on Monday is 90% the same as what’s available on Tuesday.

    Romanza: We both love Romanza at Temptation Cancun, so we def wanted to try the one at Miches. However. Because we were both wearing open toed flip flops, not closed-toed shoes, we were told that we could only eat outside and not allowed into the indoor dining room. Passed, went back to TGM for dinner.

    Flame: Food was amazing, as usual. K got the pork leg, and not only was it the size of his head, but the meat was falling off the bone, it was so tender. A must go!

    Caffeine Coffee Shop: This one has ice cream!!! And the usual coffee and snacks. But the ice cream was a very welcome surprise, even though it was only 4 or 5 flavors.

    Pools at TMR
    The Sexy Pool is enormous, easily twice the size of the one at Cancun. The black tiling actually has a beneficial purpose - it absorbs heat from the sun and warms up the water, making it less chilly. I like the alternating shading in the pool - K loves being in the sun, while I prefer the shade, so we could sit next to each other in the water with our preferred level of sun.

    The Quiet Pool is indeed tiled yellow/green, and they were trying to go for color matching the Temptation shades there. That said, once you’re in the pool and up close, your brain recognizes that it’s tiles and not “pee pee” lol.

    Playmakers at Grand vs. Temptation
    Not that the Playmakers at Grand don’t try, but Chocolate and Coffee at Temptation win, hands down. I put it to K like this: the 2 playmakers at Grand (man and woman) seem like extroverts who would be fantastic party guests, but Chocolate IS a one-man party. His charisma is obvious from the first moment he picks up the mic.

    After K and I had spent a day or two at the TMR pool, Chocolate and Coffee would greet us very warmly whenever we ran into them, and even gave K the nickname “White Chocolate” lmao

    Guest Count and Vibe at Grand vs. Temptation
    Personal hot take: I think the guests at the TMR side are more willing to engage with the Playmakers and have fun/be silly than the guests on the TGM side, who seemed “too cool for school” and more interested in either reading on their devices poolside or staying in their pairs. The vibe I personally got at TGM is similar to what I imagine a country club is like - to see and be seen.

    We saw about the same # of guests on average at both resorts, which is still significantly lower than Cancun. On average, the pool/poolside count is 30 people. It was definitely busier on the weekends, when the local Dominicans came to stay, but that brought the guest count maybe closer to 40. The quietest days had about 20 people.

    One of the things that K and I love to do at Cancun is people watching, and unsurprisingly, there are a lot less people to watch at Miches. When we’re at Cancun, we’re not the type of guests who go up and participate in the Playmakers’ games, but we’ll enthusiastically watch, clap, laugh, and scream along with the crowd.

    That all changes when there’s only 30 people in the pool at TMR lol - that level of moderate DGAF from Cancun becomes the top tier level of DGAF at Miches. Basically…if you’re like us and have always been intimidated but curious to participate in the pool games at Cancun, Miches is the place to try it out? :D

    Evening Activities - Show and Party
    We saw a grand total of 2 evening shows while we were there - one at TGM and one at TMR.

    TGM’s entertainment centers around live music. They bring in a local singer, Alexandra, who is quite good. We went to her Madonna show, and she does an excellent Madonna singing impression, backed up by 5 dancers who had pretty good choreography. After the main show is over, Alexandra continues singing and can sometimes be performing in the late evening before the actual showtime. The crowd watching the show was about 40 to 50 people, which was among the biggest crowds we saw all week at either resort.

    The one night we went to TMR’s show was…less impressive. In fairness, it was a rainy night where the show was moved indoors, instead of the outdoors Bash stage set up. The “show” was basically the Playmakers from both TMR and TGM coming out in a fashion show style, strutting their stuff to music, and then coming back all together again for a short dance number. That was it - no professional dancers, no live music, no pizzazz like a show at Cancun. What also didn’t help was the low audience #, around 20 or so.

    As the show at TMR wound down and the dancing was attempting to wind up, we saw a handful of guests from Grand in their theme night attire heading towards the TMR party. This tracks with TMR being the party, because the Disco at Grand was super dead the one night we visited, and people were using the Playroom as a talking lounge away from the music.

    General comments on things I’ve seen in other Miches reviews
    • Level of English language proficiency from the staff: This can be hit or miss. For straightforward requests, like “rum and coke”, they’re on the ball and got you. For something slightly more complex, like “can I have a bowl of rice (in addition to my entree)”, K had to serve as my translator, using the Spanish he remembered from high school and jobs from years ago.
    • Distance between TGM and TMR: Really, really, really close. Like a 5 minute walk, at most, from the villas in Grand to the Sexy Pool at TMR, and an extra 5 mins to get all the way to the Rose Spa, the furthest point in the TMR lobby. See this thread for a map with the bridge marked: Map Of Grand Miches
    • Tipping makes the staff remember you: We were among the only regular tippers (that we could see) and can confirm that by tipping the Sexy Pool bartender and the Rain breakfast buffet staff, they remember you, remember your preferred drink order, and pay attention to you.
    In Conclusion…
    Would we go back again to Miches? Yes, definitely, for 2 reasons:
    • Cost is a lot lower on my Premier contract. The 25% discount on the all inclusive rate adds up, especially during high season.
    • Sometimes, you’re just not in the mood for the nonstop, crush of high occupancy, party people at Cancun.

    Given the drive from the airport, K and I would go back on stays of 5 nights or more. For trips shorter than that, it’s hard to make the 1+ hr drive worth it. We’re planning on going to Miches for Christmas through New Year’s, because Cancun historically has been at 99% occupancy, and I’d like to be able to eat at restaurants, get spa appointments, etc.

    Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk, all 3k+ words of it! Feel free to AMA on what's written above or what I didn't cover.

    (And many thanks to my darling partner-in-crime, @Ragekage for our amazing adventures together xoxo)
     
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  4. Cheers2US

    Cheers2US Guru Registered Member

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    Bravo! Excellent report! Very thorough! I really appreciate the attention to detail and the bonus tips. We are not Premier, but we do love TTR and both Desires.
     
  5. vacationfun2

    vacationfun2 I can choose my own title Registered Member

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    Wow, thank you.
     
  6. RC FUN

    RC FUN Enthusiast Registered Member

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    Great review thanks
     
  7. Cheers2US

    Cheers2US Guru Registered Member

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    Do they have foam parties at TMR and TGM?
     
  8. ash09

    ash09 Enthusiast Registered Member

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    There weren't any foam nights while we were there, nor are there any on their theme nights.
     
  9. Cheers2US

    Cheers2US Guru Registered Member

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    I meant the daytime foam parties, that happen in the pool.

    I saw several reviews on TripAdvisor mentioning foam parties at TGM; one reviewer said it was on Fridays. Just wanted to confirm.
     
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