My husband and I just got back from Cuba and I felt it necessary to write a review on this resort. We had booked this trip believing that it was a 4 star resort, and I would have to say that it isn’t more than a 3 star. We wouldn’t go back to this resort, although I did hear that there were other "4 star" resorts that were even worse than ours. When we had booked our trip we made mention that it was our honeymoon and we would like an upgrade in a specific part of the hotel. When we arrived (in the middle of the night)we found that we had been put in the area of the hotel that we requested NOT to be and we did not receive the upgrade that we had requested. These were not major things though and we weren’t too concerned. Then we got to our room. There was a heart shaped cake that was left for us but they did not leave any utensils or plates. They also left us glasses for the champagne that we were supposed to have, but no champagne. Again, not the end of the world. So, because we had arrived in the middle of the night, we were starving from travelling all day. We were really looking forward to the "24 hour snack bar" but when we went there (this was about 4 am) they told us that there was no more food left. This was quite disappointing, but again, not the end of the world. When we went back to our rooms to go to bed and noticed that it smelled like feces right outside of our rooms. We figured that there must be a septic tank right outside of our room. When we woke up in the morning we found that there was feces smeared in the hallway outside of our room as well as on our balcony. This did not impress us at all. We requested a room change which was granted.
The weather wasn’t great, the food was better than we thought, most of the staff was friendly, the pools were dirty, and overall, I just would not return to this resort.
Rooms: We had the opportunity to stay in two different rooms. Both the beds were ROCK hard and very springy. The bathrooms were pretty good but I wouldn’t use the bathtub. The bathtub looked pretty gross. Maid service was pretty good. Don’t expect your mini fridge to be restocked with anything – not even water. If you want water you have to request it at the front desk and you are charged for it.
I did see a cockroach in our room on one occasion.
Restaurants and Bars: I would have to say that this was the most disappointing thing for me. I was really looking forward to SLUSHY drinks (think pina coladas, daiquiris, etc.) and they do not have slushy drinks at this hotel!! They have slush machines, but you never get a truly slushy drink. On the last day we were there I got a somewhat slushy drink, but that melted right away anyways. Also, you can’t get every kind of drink at every bar. I thought it was weird that there were bars that didn’t serve beer… They supposedy have a piano bar, but it was only open one night that we were there (for our seven day stay). I had been really looking forward to this. The nightly entertainment shows are held in one of the alacarte restaurants (inside) and you have to line up at least 30 minutes before the show starts and then you have to push your way through the front doors otherwise you don’t get a seat. I have to say that I wasn’t that impressed with the shows anyways. My husband and I took a walk around the grounds and found an outdoor theatre which would have been awesome to have the shows at, but it is completely dilapidated. As for the restaurants: we never went to an al a carte. The buffet was pretty good actually, but the hours were sort of silly. Breakfast was from 7-10:30, lunch from 1-4, and supper from 7-9:30. I just found it odd that the restaurant was closed between 4-7 as a lot of people want to eat supper around that time.
The snack bar was ok. But obviously it isn’t 24 hours as they like to promote.
Beach/Pools/Grounds: Mediocre. The beach itself is beautiful and so is the ocean. But the grounds themselves and the pools could have definitely used some more attention. There are beautiful fountains around the resort that are completely empty.
I think that this resort has a lot of potential but needs some more attention in this area.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: We took personal care items to give to the locals (shampoos, conditioners, toothpaste, etc.) and we found out that if you want to barter with them for stuff just walk around carrying what you have to barter with right in your hands. Be careful though – I had extra stuff in my purse and we ended up being mobbed by about 5 people and they were grabbing at my purse and taking items out! They even took out one of my shoes! They love these kinds of items, but I would suggest only taking a few things at a time!! We did the catamaran tour which was terrible. The weather was terrible and they should have cancelled the tour. It was VERY windy, cold, and miserable. We didn’t even get to go to the reef for snorkelling because the weather was so bad that it was dangerous to snorkel in that area. I wouldn’t recommend this tour unless the weather is nice!
We did the Havana special tour where you go and tour Havana and then go to the tropicana – message me if you want more information about this one!
Overall, I prefer Mexico to Cuba. The beaches are beautiful, but it definitely wouldn’t be my first choice. If I was going to go to Cuba again I would definitely save my money and go to a 5+ star resort.