SmartFlyer travel advisor Katie Jacobson is a Northern California native who currently resides in Newport Beach. She developed a love affair with travel while studying abroad in London. She started Ever After Honeymoons in 2009 based on a love of travel.
Since starting Ever After Honeymoons, Katie has visited over 40 countries around the world. Katie is passionate about her work and continues to explore the world, seeking out unique destinations and one-of-a-kind travel experiences as much as she can. This week she goes to the Dominican Republic and gives us an insider’s tour of Amanera.
By Katie Jacobson
A seaside hideaway situated on Playa Grande’s mile-long stretch of beach, Amanera emerges from over 2000 acres of lush, protected rainforest.
Amanera, which means ‘peaceful water,’ is set on the idyllic north coast of the Dominican Republic. Backed by the dramatic Cordillera Septentrional Mountain Range, the resort offers breathtaking ocean views and access to the spectacular private clifftop Playa Grande Golf & Ocean Club.
Nestled within the pristine Caribbean jungle, overlooking the mile-long golden sands of Playa Grande. It’s an exotic yet easily accessible destination, located a short seventy-five minutes from Puerto Plata International Airport.
Privacy and personalized service make this Aman property feel chic yet exotic.
The ‘casitas’ provide expansive indoor and outdoor living areas surrounded by lush tropical gardens. All ‘casitas’ are one bedroom with a separate living room area. With sleek and modern décor as well as the latest high-tech features, you have all the comforts of home (and more!). If you want even more privacy, book one of the casitas with a private pool. Or, for the ultimate chance to spread out, the two-bedroom Bay View Casa is ultra-luxurious.
Two-Bedroom Bay View Casa
Surrounded by lush gardens, Amanera’s two-bedroom, 2,626 sq. ft. Bay View Casa occupies the most prime position on the Playa Grande coastline. At the heart of the casa, a private swimming pool, terrace dining area, and expansive sundeck form a central space to gather and enjoy the Caribbean outdoor lifestyle, ideal for entertaining surrounded by panoramic ocean views.
The casa also affords guests ample privacy, with king-sized beds and en suite bathrooms housed in separate free-standing pavilions. To ensure a seamless stay, the casa has a personal host on hand to tend to every need, including transporting guests around the resort in the casa’s private buggy. In line with the resort’s nature-inspired ethos, there are four tranquil ponds surrounding the casa.
There are expansive sundecks and terraces, two free-standing bedroom pavilions with king-size beds, both with en suite bathrooms with dual showers and oversized tubs.
In total there are three bathrooms, a living room, dining room, and 1,238 sq. ft. of reflection pools and outdoor living space, divided into four private landscaped courtyards.
Offering unobstructed views of the ocean in a prime location along the Playa Grande coastline, the 829 sq. ft. Amanera Casita opens onto an extensive 1,711 sq. ft. terrace, which includes a sheltered alfresco dining area and a private swimming pool for outdoor living.
Ideal for couples seeking a little more space, the casita’s high-ceilinged bedroom with a king-sized bed and living area includes an expansive bathroom with a freestanding bathtub flooded with natural light from skylights above.
Outdoors there is a 990 sq. ft. shaded terrace with lounging/dining area and a 721 sq. ft. open-air terrace with sun loungers.
3. Restaurants and Bars
The Restaurant, specializing in fresh, organic dishes, features a terrace overlooking the uninterrupted mile-long golden strand of Playa Grande beach. Floor-to-ceiling windows in the restaurant ensure expansive views from indoors, and the second-story bar is the perfect spot for an aperitif. Or, choose to dine right on the sand at the Beach Club, the ocean providing a spectacular backdrop to your Dominican dining experience.
Overlooking the resort and Playa Grande with open-air seating, take in the sunset views whilst enjoying a gentle ocean breeze. Explore signature Dominican flavors exhibited through expertly crafted cocktails or sample six kinds of local Rum from the island.
With a terrace overlooking Playa Grande and floor-to-ceiling windows bringing in the beauty of the ocean vista, Amanera’s main restaurant treats diners to a spectacular panorama from every table.
Drawing on the culinary traditions of the Dominican Republic combined with international techniques, Executive Chef Diego Martinez offers a menu of fresh, organic flavors and finely spiced, fragrant dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Down on the beach, tucked into a sandy cove on Playa Grande beach, the Beach Club provides feet-in-the-sand dining with a spectacular backdrop, conjuring local recipes and the classic dishes of Latin and South America for lunch, private-dining events, and special-occasion dinners.
On the top floor of Casa Grande, Amanera’s all-day Lounge is perfectly positioned to take in the spectacle of the ocean vista – a panoramic backdrop to complimentary afternoon teas, evening sundowners, and expert-led rum tastings.
4. Spa and Gym
The Amanera signature experiences provide healing treatments inspired by the moon cycles to realign yourself using Mother Nature’s ingredients, lunar energy, and holistic hands-on techniques.
Plants inherited from local shamanic wisdom are used to reflect the healing tradition of the island’s indigenous Taíno Indians. All signature journeys begin with a foot ritual, holistic consultation to personalize your treatment, a Palo Santo smudging ceremony, and conclude with a Larimar chakra balancing meditation.
Additionally, the property offers a variety of classes such as High-Intensity Interval Training. Personal Trainers and private classes are also available upon request.
Lunar healing with larimar
Unique to Hispaniola, Larimar is a rare blue gemstone believed to encourage physical and emotional healing, closely linked to the phases of the moon. Amanera’s signature lunar journey therapies pair the chakra-balancing influence of larimar with a palo santo smudging ceremony, a traditional Dominican ritual featuring the aromatic smoke of the sacred wood.
Designed to nourish the individual in body, mind and spirit, this immersive three-hour spa experience incorporates three rituals, each developed to cleanse, restore and re-empower. It begins with a body scrub and wrap using jade powder, calendula oil and Himalayan salts to stimulate circulation and soften the skin, followed by a deeply relaxing full-body massage to dissipate muscular tension, and ending with a soothing face ritual that leaves the skin rebalanced and radiant.
Boost metabolism and build strength, conditioning, and endurance with a beach-circuit workout, using the natural landscape of the Dominican Republic as an outdoor gym. Begin with a soft-sand run on Playa Grande for a natural resistance challenge, then tone arms, legs, and abs with conditioning squats, planks, and lunges during a total body workout.
Unite body, mind, and spirit with a moonlight yoga session. Beginning with a sacred moon ritual to release negativity, this is an opportunity to let things go, remain calm and learn to breathe through difficult moments. By encouraging healing, forgiveness, and surrender, this practice leaves participants feeling pure in spirit, with awakened senses.
Golf Digest writes of Playa Grande, “The great golf courses like Augusta are the ones that really kind of evolve over time. I think that’s what happened at Playa Grande. The best courses make you think about every shot. And that’s the case here.”
The 18-hole Rees Jones golf course includes 10 oceanfront holes, so even if you find it a bit challenging, the views more than makeup for any balls that end up in the ocean
6. VIP Contact
Contact Katie Jacobson at email@example.com