- Where to Go
- The Best of the Dominican Republic
- A Nature Lover’s Dominican Trek
- The Sexiest Dominican Beaches
- Historical Dominican Road Trip
- A Dominican Culture Tour
- Carnaval and Its Masks
- Planning Your Dominican Wedding
- Dominican Adventures
- Golfing the Dominican Republic
- Dominican Music and Dance
- La Ruta del Mango
- Day-Tripping in Monte Plata
- The Best Small Resorts
Casa de Campo
Casa de Campo’s Marina & Yacht Club, designed to look like Portofino, Italy, has many nice restaurants, international boutiques, galleries, jewelers, and even impromptu entertainment. The restaurants that are particularly notable are La Casita (6:30–11 p.m. daily; dress is casual elegance), which serves Spanish seafood amid views of yachts and the sea; and Chinois (tel. 809/523-2388, noon–3 p.m. and 6:30–11 p.m. daily; dress is casual for lunch), which has Cantonese-style lunch and dinner (a little overrated, but still better than most all-inclusive restaurants). Part of the charm of the restaurants in this area is their atmosphere. The Marina & Yacht Club is quite alluring as you sit back and watch the easy bobbing of the luxurious yachts. Reservations are recommended for all restaurants for dinner.
In the main area of Casa de Campo, restaurants include Lago Grill (tel. 809/523-3333, 7–11 a.m. and noon–3 p.m. Mon.–Sat., 6:30–11 a.m. and noon–4 p.m. Sun., US$6–14, breakfast buffet US$16) and The Beach Club by Le Cirque (tel. 809/523-3333, noon–4 p.m. and 7–11 p.m. daily, US$10–30). The first is a breakfast and lunch buffet with ample terraced space offering a view of the Teeth of the Dog golf course. The breakfast specialties are omelets prepared to your personal liking and a fresh-squeezed juice bar. Le Cirque has fresh salads, seafoods, and meats all prepared by Chef Alfio Longo, who was trained by New York’s famous Le Cirque. Bathing suits are acceptable during lunchtime as it is on the beach.
Altos de Chavón
Dine amid the romantic scenery of the artists’ village. La Piazetta (tel. 809/523-3333, 6–11 p.m. daily) is an à la carte Italian restaurant befitting its surroundings, complete with serenading musicians. There’s a delicious antipasto bar, homemade pastas, seafood in varied sauces, meat, and poultry. And no Italian restaurant would be complete without succulent desserts and rich coffees. A children’s menu is available. Don’t forget to check out the humidor with cigars. Reservations are required.
La Romana Town
Trigo de Oro (Calle Eugenio A. Miranda, tel. 809/550-5650, US$2–14) is a wonderful French-owned café in a converted historical home. The chefs make all their own pastries. It is set apart from the street by a fence with lush greenery, making an inviting, shady courtyard and veranda where you can have a quiet cup of coffee and conversation. There’s a full bar with wine and beer as well. Coffee and desserts are a specialty. Although it seems posh, the prices are cheap. The chocolate croissants are to die for.
At Don Quijote (Calle Diego Avila 44, tel. 809/556-2827, next to the Parque Central, closed Mon., US$7–15), savor a wonderful menu with items like filet mignon and seafood delicacies. Few places offer this kind of ambiance and service, so when you find it, you tend to want to stick around. Enjoy the tablecloths and candles and the view of the Parque Central for lunch or dinner. La Casita (Calle Francisco Doucadray 57, tel. 809/556-5932, 11 a.m.–11 p.m. daily, US$6–35) is decorated with hand-painted Italian porcelain to match the Italian menu, with good seafood such as lobster thermidor or salmon. Other menu choices worth consideration are the risottos and pastas.
Got a hankering for something other than the usual Dominican or Italian choices? Try Shish Kabob (Calle Francisco del Castillo Marquez 32, tel. 809/556-2737, Tues.–Sun. 10 a.m.–midnight, US$5–20) for some Middle Eastern food. Grilled kabobs, kabob pizza, and dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) are on the menu, along with a ton of other tasty choices, like baba ghanoush.
Tucked back into a very commercial area, on Calle Juan de Utrera, you will find La Romana Market Place. This is where the locals shop for fresh produce, housewares, and all kinds of everyday things.
© Ana Chavier Caamaño from Moon Dominican Republic, 4th edition