Restaurants: We went to a little spot in the park near the hotel and had lovely entertainment and pina colada’s at a great price and they were the best I had ever had. On the resort We did the Cuban A la carte and enjoyed it very much…should you order and if it is on the menu that week….I HIGHLY suggest that you nibble the pork crackling if you get it.. don’t try to chew it… you nibble it like corn on the cob.. it was entertaining watching people figure this out though…it was relaxing and slow paced dinner was over an hour in the serving of our dishes spaced out and very cozy. Remember that any restaurant in Cuba that is not Cuban food exclusive is AN INTERPRETATION of that type of food…I found it amusing that people complained about the pizza or the chinese restaurant.. umm hello.. your in Cuba people…keep it in perspective. Try to enjoy the experience not merely the menu. We loved the Pork, the chicken and the Fish while we at the buffets immensely.
Bars: the Aqua Bar was lively and busy all day yes it closes at 5 p.m yet is still a hang out in the evening. Also the other bars were a bit echo-ee in acoustics however it was a good time whenever we were there as well as the lobby bar/lounge being very entertaining with live music and dancing every night even the waiters got into the action and it was a really good time and full of laughter and even a conga line one night. If we wanted to drink after midnight we just walked around the corner to the little local out door bar and enjoyed a few cocktails and music there Varadero is open and lively and friendly at any time of day or night.
Beach and Pools: the beach was lovely but crowded ( and that is what we were there for afterall.. sun and sand ) it was a short jaunt across the street and if you got there early you got a nice seat if you were past 10 a.m it was tough to get one until after 4 p.m The evenings and the sunsets were stunning and worth the wait!!! Pools were roomy and relaxing.
Grounds: the grounds were well kept, well manicured ,gardeners are very friendly and as a treat they made us wonderful grasshoppers.We tipped everyone we came in contact with ( usually 1 or up to 5 CUC’s) but that is what we do there is no presure to do so FYI the gardeners and security don’t usually get anything from the touristas so we made sure to extend gratitude to them. The Security detail was very helpful and pleasant, and very respectful,remember they work in 24 hour shifts …not easy in that heat with dark pants shirts and ties all day and night…we often saw others bringing them refreshment as they are not to leave their posts
Activities and Entertainment
live music nightly in the lobby bar loads of fun…and some daily activities. exercise in the pool a few games etc…
Tours: We went for R&R ,not for the tours but we did hear great things about the catamaran tour. We did rent scooters at a great price and had a lot of fun doing that.
Departure and Check Out: early morning…April 29th,2008
Conclusion: We would go back again and really enjoyed the time we spent there we really enjoyed traipsing around Varadero on foot doing some light shopping and we had brought gifts for the local children ( watching those children play with bubbles and so apreciative over the school supplies was worth every dime of going ) and the resort staff ( our room attendant )… it was all greatly appreciated by all and we had a wonderful relaxing satisfying time.. I would recommend it to any and all…Great for everyone… Especially if your on the easy going side. The resort is definantly a 3.5 star I would give it a 4 for Cuba ; I have stayed in Cuba before and I love Cuba for Cuba…For its climate, its people ,the culture and the ambiance. Cuba is not for the High maintenance needy. It is a state of mind and everything in Cuba ….happens on Cuban Time.. IF you ever get the opportunity toget to know the people..do it you won’t regret it.
hang out in local spots.be friendly and approach the local people ….A great time is sure to be had.