We travelled with Sunwing and arrived half an hour early, however the bus was delayed leaving for the resort because of line ups at the airport Cadeca. Our bus trip was unfortunately taken in the dark. Once at the hotel, we were met with welcome cocktails and music, and check in was quick and efficient. A bell boy escorted me to my room, which had the air conditioning running and a light on to greet me. The fridge was stocked with beer, soft drinks, water, and juice. A bottle of rum and a bottle of wine were also included in my VIP package.
My room was spacious, had ample room in the closet and plenty of hangers for my clothes, and also four drawers available. There was a full length mirror as one of the closet doors, and of course a safe. (included in the VIP package). The beds were comfortable and not as hard as I usually find in Cuba. The bathroom had a walk in shower, no tub. Everything worked well except for the fluorescent light in the bathroom, which was sometimes a bit reluctant to ignite. Hot water for the shower required patience, but showed up eventually after running the tap for several minutes. The balcony was a perfect place to sit, and the view over the bay was wonderful.
Restaurants and Bars: The buffet restaurant had an outdoor section, which was our choice every time. The indoor area isn’t air conditioned, and outside had a cooling breeze. Remember not to sit in a sunny area at supper! But breakfast was very pleasant outside. Service was good, coffee was delivered promptly to the table for breakfast, and at other meals orders for beer or wine or whatever were taken soon after we sat down. The food was fairly typical for Cuba, and the bread particularly was nice and fresh every day. Real butter was provided, unlike at the five star I visited in February, which had only trans fat margarine. The a la carte was very nice, did have air conditioning…..which was a bit anemic, but at least running…..and the food was good. We visited both the a la carte at Farallon and at sister resort Marea, which was also good.
The snack bar had coffee available early in the morning, and it was a treat to sit and enjoy the view while sipping a cappuccino before breakfast. Several lunches were served at the snack bar, buffet style, instead of at the buffet. It was a pleasant change, and the food provided was good and fresh. I noticed no problems with flies.
The beach is dark sand, which is not so esthetically pleasing as white, and also gets hot underfoot. We didn’t spend much time at the beach, except to visit for sailing. The palapas are located in front of Marea, and there seemed to be good availability of shade and chairs.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: We did the Cayo Blanco excursion on the three days it was available. We enjoyed snorkelling and sailing from the island, and the white sand was pleasing to the eye when we rested or had lunch. Food was good, with several choices on the grill. I’m vegetarian, so squash, potatoes, and a rice dish kept me satified.
The one thing that really needs to be addressed on the island is the appalling state of the washrooms. It is a good plan to make sure you won’t be needing them for anything urgent, and you can always resort to using the ocean as a "swim up bar".
Other Comments: I need to mention the front desk staff. They were always very pleasant and helpful. Changing money was done professionally, and a receipt was provided. I would recommend the Farallon as an excellent choice in this area. If a person had mobility issues, the Marea might be a better fit, in which case the cabanas with VIP option would be the way to go. I found walking back and forth between the resorts an easy ten minute trip, and if you prefer a cab or buggy, they are available for 1 CUC. We did use a cab for our a la carte dinner at Marea, otherwise the walk was preferable for us. Farallon has several levels and stairs are necessarily involved, e.g. the buffet is on the second floor.
Quibbles: I had some difficulty with the key card to my room. It generally took a few attempts to get it to work. OTOH, it didn’t bother me enough to get it reprogrammed. The hot water, as mentioned, took a while to come and was rarely very hot, although adequate for a shower.