Hotels along the Malecón are more modern. They are mostly high-rise buildings and the antithesis to the old-world charm of the Ciudad Colonial  and Gazcue neighborhoods. Even though some do offer phenomenal views of the Caribbean Sea (provided you get a room with a view), the ocean is not accessible in this area. These hotels do put you right in the thick of the hotel nightclubbing and casino scene. If that is your main focus, you’re best off to stay here. However, it’s a long walk to the Ciudad Colonial (or a short taxi ride).
The rooms in Hotel Meliá Santo Domingo (Av. George Washington 365, tel. 809/221-6666, www.solmelia.com , US$70 d) are comfortable and nicely appointed, though not unique. There are two good restaurants (one with lunch and dinner buffets and one that is a grill). The pool on the second-floor terrace is a nice escape from the busy world outside the hotel. The hotel offers a casino, health spa, tennis courts, and a disco. Service is good.
At the Hotel Centenario Intercontinental (Av. George Washington 218, tel. 809/221-0000, www.intercontinental.com/santodomingo , US$210 d), the simple elegance of the lobby is just a hint of what is to come. The rooms, although somewhat small, are very comfortable and tastefully decorated, with cable TV and pay-per-view plus a minibar. Tennis courts and a swimming pool with a Jacuzzi are on-site.
Although it is not the best hotel on the strip, Renaissance Jaragua Hotel & Casino (Av. George Washington 367, tel. 809/221-2222, www.marriott.com , US$100) is a massive one and you can’t miss it. It’s like being on the strip in Vegas. This hotel is known for its large casino and one of the most popular nightclubs, Jubilee. It is best to upgrade to a deluxe or suite; the rooms are dated a bit but comfortable, with all the amenities you would expect in a large hotel.
The 228-room, 21-floor Hilton Santo Domingo (Av. George Washington 500, tel. 809/685-0202, www.hiltoncaribbean.com/santodomingo , US$130 d) is the most recently renovated out of all those along the Malecón. It boasts the city’s largest casino, and the rooms almost all have a stunning ocean view from floor to ceiling windows. Duvets cover the stylishly decorated and very comfortable beds. Amenities include Internet hookup, electronic safety boxes, cable TV, and minibars. The pool is on the seventh floor and has a bar next to it. This is a full-service hotel.