When I read other reviews of this hotel, it made me slightly nervous about staying here (although I had already reserved). But, it turned out to be a decent place to stay for a few reasons.
1) This hotel is located 20 minutes drive from Old Havana, and this hotel provides a free bus shuttle that takes you there 3 times a day: 9:30am, 2:30pm, 6:30pm. This is a bonus because a taxi will cost you between $15-$25 to take you there on a one-way journey. It also brings you back to the hotel at designated times as well, with the last one being at 6pm. Walking around Old Havana is very safe, and well worth a trip. Just avoid getting into conversations when people try to talk to you (and they will) by walking right by them as if you don't hear them calling out to you, because if you engage yourself in a conversation, they will inevitably ask you for a handout.
2) This hotel has a beautiful beach in the back, and the sand is super fine sand, clean, and the water is truly amazing (and calm), water the lightest shade of blue. The water is warm, and there are lots of freestanding straw umbrellas you can sit under with a lot of available beach lounge chairs for you to sit or lay back on. I did not witness anyone trying to sell you anything...it is very hassle free, relaxing, and I because this hotel is located in an area all onto it's own, so you get the privacy without a lot of people around.
3) This hotel is all-inclusive food and drinks. So, you won't have to shell out a penny for any eating on this holiday, although I personally feel you should always tip the wait staff since the locals do not make a lot of money (their average salary ranges between $20 - $25 Convertible Pesos a month). When you do tip them, they are extremely appreciative.
1) The room is not nice. It's also not gross either (in my well-travelled opinion). It's just really old, paint chips, bathtub has patches where it is all worn out. Floors badly scuffed. All beds at this hotel I believe, have 2 twin beds. So if you are a couple, you can simply drag the two beds together, not a big deal. But, it is for the most part, fairly clean under the circumstances that is is super old. They have Air Conditioning, a fridge, 2 towels per person, and a tv in the room for your use. By North American standards, you might be dismayed at the room but if you've done a lot of travelling to poorer countries and you are not a 5-star hotel patron, this is about normal in my opinion. It's not as nice as the Best Western....just imagine a Super 8...when thinking about what the inside of the room looks like.
2) The food is extremely below average if you are used to eating North American Buffets. The people living in this country are extremely poor...they hardly get enough food to eat themselves. Someone told me local families get a food ration of 1/2 a chicken every two weeks, and 1/2 kg of rice. So, you will notice 90% of the locals are super skinny since they don't hardly get any food to eat. With that in mind, the food at the buffet is extremely lacklustre. Don't expect a yummy feast. But, what you can expect is that there is always plentiful amounts of food to get full and not go hungry. Personally, I lost about 5 lbs on this trip because the food looked extremely unappealing to me. I would just eat enough to fill my stomach so that it would not growl from hunger... and that is about it. Examples of the food?
-Tomatoes and Grapefruits sliced and tossed together on a serving platter, no sauce or dressing, just plain.
-Some thinly sliced meats (ex. ham) and cheeses
-Boiled spaghetti noodles with plain tomato sauce (no meatsauce)
-Platter of sliced beets (canned?)
-One to two of the following at lunch or dinner: freshly grilled fish, boiled shrimp, baked chicken, roast pork, turkey
-Shredded cabbage plain
-Ground beef/pork potato stew
-One tray of baked Rigatoni Pasta with tomato sauce, and a little ground beef or pork
I noticed there were some gluttonous patrons who piled their plates up like mountains, with a lot of side plates to take even more food back to their tables. So, I guess to each their own with regard to tastes and expectations.
1) You will see the odd middle aged or older man with a young prostitute at this hotel. Not a lot. But, they aren't usually one-night affairs. In order to stay at this resort, you have to submit a passport and you get a bracelet to indicate you are a patron of this hotel, so they are usually staying there for a week. They keep to themselves look like a honeymooning couple but you will just know better since 18 year olds don't usually date 60 year old men.
2) There are unlimited drinks at this hotel, but they frequently run out of ingredients to make Mojitos and Pina Coladas, so if you happen to love either of these 2 drinks, just realize that you may rarely if at all, get to drink them. They have ample pop, juice beer, wine, and hard liquors though.
3) We brought workout outfits hoping to use their gym. The gym is a joke. It is one hardly functionable step machine covered with rust, with one set of handweights on the ground, and a rusted out hardly functionable Universal Gym. The gym smells terrible like mold, and the air conditioning inside it is broken so they always keep it locked up. You won't use it...don't bother bringing workout gear unless you are planning to go running on the street.
Try to request a room with a double bed...I'm not sure if they are even available, but doesn'...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.