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“Great Holiday” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Roc Arenas Doradas

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Hotel Roc Arenas Doradas
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3.5 of 5 Resort   |   Autopista Varadero km 17 | Playa de los Tainos, Varadero, Cuba   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #24 of 59 Hotels in Varadero
St. Catharines
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
247 helpful votes 247 helpful votes
“Great Holiday”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2012

We just returned from a week long vacation on March 2nd. It was our first trip to Cuba and enjoyed our Varadero experience very much. Having had friends stay at this resort the week before us was very helpful. We also have had a lot of friends holiday in Varadero so we were very prepared with little suprises. As most or all of the reviews mention the beach and ocean are amazing. The staff were all very helpful and extremely friendly. The lovely lady taking care of us and our room was fabulous. The room was always very clean and we had lots of toilet paper , clean towels , shampoo and body wash every day. The pool was great along with the bar staff. Beer was always cold but bring your Bubbas gents or you will get your beer in what I would best describe as a beer shooter. Watch them make the drinks because for me they were always too strong. ( usually about half and half ) It"s along day and not seeing suppertime can be hard on the body ! Speaking of food....yes the food is somewhat bland in general but we came prepared with hot sauses and some spices. Get up early and get yourself a nice omellete with bacon and some of the greatest bread you will taste. The lunch down at the beach bar is grilled fresh in front of you everyday. Fish , chicken , pork chops, ribs and scrimp with a side of rice and potatoes will keep you plenty full. Dinner can be a little repetitive but you will find some pretty good pasta at the pasta bar and the grill always had fish , pork , beef , and the one night I had some of the best baby beef liver done how I asked for. I have never had that at any 5* star I have stayed at. The resort in general is in good shape with continuous improvement. I wish I could tell you for sure which of the blocks of rooms have been refurbished but I do not want to guess . We were in #6 block and that set was not done , yet the rooms were fine. Remember folks this is Cuba , 3* and nice and easy on the pocket book. Reach into that pocket and take out a peso or two and be amazed at the good service.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,644 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (239)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Calgary, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2012

Everything was super! The hotel is nice. We went from Feb 26 to March 5. The weather was amazing and the Beach is soo beautiful. The trip from Calgary: 5 1/2 hours.

Pros:
- Great and clean Beach (In the afternoon they pick up every cup that the tourists
leave)
- Cubans are very friendly
- Food is really good (bread in the morning is delicious, pasta is soo good!)
- Entertaiment for all ages (Shooting, minigolf, pool games, dancing lessons, contests)
- Rooms are nice. (We stayed at room 917, second floor, pool view. In the middle of beach and lobby, just Perfect!)
- We receive 2 bottle of water, shampoo and soap and 2 toilet paper every day. Enough for us.
- Tips for the maid twice a week, 1 peso each time.
- We paid 100 pesos for a trip to Habana in a private car. (We were 4 people)
- 50 pesos for snorkeling.
- Tip for the waitress, when they were nice. And also for the singers that give me a serenade for my birthday.

Cons:
One week is not enough. =((

Room Tip: building 900 are great. close to beach and the lobby. Restaurant A la carte: you have to book 2 day...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guelph, Ontario
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2012

Food
Relatively bland & repetitive
Bringing your own condiments is a MUST and will make all the difference!!!
I'd recommend salsa, ketchup, peanut butter
Fresh juice at breakfast is good
Seafood al la carte was best
Pizza at Italian was also good

Drinks
Piña coladas were best at pool bar!
Mojitos were better at lobby bar!
No Havana club on the bar, so we bought a bottle at the gift shop for $5 and drank that instead of their rum

Service
We had bottled water, clean towels and toilet paper everyday….but we heard other people did not. On the first day we introduced ourselves to our maid and left her gifts everyday (clothing, toiletries). She seemed very appreciative.

Rooms
We requested an upper level room in building 5 and got it. Our room was basic but extremely clean! No mold, no musty smell

Resort
Grounds were well maintained and clean, especially for an older resort! No... There's no toilet seats in the lobby bathroom but if you venture off the resort you will notice there's no toilet seats in ANY public washroom. Probably no toilet paper either

Beach
Very clean, despite reviews I read about garbage on the beach. Crystal clear water. No problems getting beach chairs. Don't miss the sunsets at night! Gorgeous! The people selling things on the beach will no bother you if you simply say "No". However, i did find they had the best prices for souvenirs! The people selling coconut and pineapples to drink…they are very pretty but not worth the 5 pesos…. we tipped the resort gardener 1 peso and he got us fresh coconuts off the resort that tasted like heaven!!!!

Excursions
We paid $40 each and took a tour bus to Havana. We had no problem exploring on our own and thoroughly enjoyed doing so at our own pace. People who did the guided tour spent far too long inside churches and learning history in my opinion...... We loved walked around on our own! Bike taxis were best for getting around and the flea market had best prices for shopping. We also rented mopeds and explored downtown varadero on our own!


Overall we thought this resort was great value for what we paid (less then $800 each) and would recommend this resort to friends and family.

Room Tip: Building 5 was extremely clean (Recently renovated i believe). Choose an upper floor for no bugs. Se...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Greenfield Park
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2012

We booked our trip in December to visit the week of Feb 26. I read the reviews and the majority were negative. I was quite nervous to go, but once we arrived, we were quite pleased. We are a family of 5 and the reception gave us joining rooms (407-408). We each had 2 bottles of water in our rooms everyday and 2 rolls of toilet paper. Every bathroom we went into, had toilet seats. The rooms had air conditioning and running hot water. The staff was very accomadating to our needs. There was one pool staff member that would bring us a parasol every morning. The bartenders at the swim up bar are nice. My 4 and 6 year old would order their slushes and the guys always served them with a smile :)
If you treat them nice, you will be treated the same way. You get what you give.
The Italian rest. is delicious. I had the veal, my husband had the beef and the 3 kids had delicious pizza. Our food was never raw. The buffet...Breakfast: delicious crepes, omelettes, fresh bread, and orange juice! The bread is so good!!! As well as the pastries!! We brought Peanut butter, Jams, Nutella, ketchup. seasonings, chips, power bars, powdered juice sachets. I would recommend that you do the same. The seafood restaurant was not to our liking. You can order a lobster for 10 pesos at the lobby in the morning to have for supper. It is worth it. If you can't get extra reservations to a restaurant that you like, you can have the chef cook up something for you ex: pizza, and you can eat it in your room. We tipped the guy each time he made us pizza to eat in our room ;)
The beach grill is delicious....chicken, sausage(hot dog), shrimp, and pork.
We left our maid nylons, chocolates, tooth paste, tooth brushes, clothes, on the pillow as well as a dollar everyday.
We did the Jeep Safari tour. It was very long but fun. Be sure to bring candy and fun things for the kids that are alongside of the roadwhen you drive through the poorer side of the city. You will be their hero! We gave candy to 60 kids. The Catamaran trip to Cayo Blanco is amazing as well!
Bring your own medicine and gravol etc...
oh yeah.... for 20 pesos/adult and 10/pesos per child, Johnny can take you out snorkelling for 2 hours. Go down to the beach where the water activities place is. There is a photographer that will take pictures of you while you snorkel and feed the fish. We bought a CD with 50 nice pictures for 30 pesos.
Go with an open mind and a smile on your face, and you will not be dissapointed.
Also, for 25 pesos/adult and 10 pesos/child, you can go into the VIP room at the Cuban airport. It is worth it because there is air conditioning, American outlets ( bring a converter for your hotle room), and unlimited food and drinks. Smoking section is closed off and away from the non-smokers.
The beach is beautiful!!!! Especially in the morningwhen it is calm. Around 1:00pm it got a little wavy.
Hope this helps.

Room Tip: rooms 407 and 408 are joining.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Glasgow, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2012

First I would like to start by saying every neg review I have read was COPMLETELY unfounded!I saw one toilet seat missing in the whole resrt, and I don't sit on them in a public washroom in Canada! Food was pretty good beach bar lunch amazing! Rooms were all you need mattress was firm but we liked it, never ran out of hot water. Staff was amazingly friendly and accomodating. The kids club staff remember every kids name! Read the little info pamphlet you get it will help to know when and where everything is. We took a flashlight b/c we were arriving at nite and I reada review thst pathawy lighting was lacking...not true did not need it.Also they are not shy with the booze when pouring a drink so you may want to tell them just a little, they tatse much better.Tip the maid a couple here and ther your bartender and waitress as well they greatly appreciate it.
They told us for future trips what they really would like from tourists is kids clothes and shoes, adult clothes and shoes ( they are crazy expensive for them to buy) and old house phones that still work ( 150.00 for them to buy one, they only make 40.00 a month)
All in all I totally recomend this resort if yu are picky and like to complain then you will ultimately find something to complain about its in your nature, but if you like sand sun and enjoying your frinds and family you will do that well here!
Cheers!

( we travelled with our son a(8) and 2 other couples)

Room Tip: i think building 8 was refurbished just relax enjoy your vacation don't bother room hoping, you...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2012

The only good thing about this resort is of course the beach....and thank goodness for a week of fantastic weather or our trip would have been horrible.
Resort is very run down but in ways that could easily be fixed; main lobby seating was bad, missing pillows on many of the wicker seating, awful lighting. Public bathrooms throughout were gross, no soap for entire week and smelled bad. Lighting at night throughout walking paths in resort was awful (or non existent...very dark).
Only good food we found was in the least expected place, the barbeque on the beach! Fresh shrimp off the grill with rice or chicken or pork. Simple and good. Buffet food was not so much disgusting, it was the little things we saw crawling around that made us lose our appetite (if you know what i mean)...and they were always there at breakfast when it was the only place on the resort to eat. Ugh gross.
Workers were not as friendly as I remember cubans to be, however I think they weren't so nice because the visitors were rude as well so I don't blame them. The only polite people we met or saw were the Canadians from Ontario and BC. French Canadians and the Germans, Russians and other european countries were rude as can be. No manners whatsoever, pushing themselves to fronts of lines like they owned the place. Perhaps if the environment was friendlier I wouldn't have been so miserable when we had to go eat.
Resort was boring, not many activities going on. Didn't watch any of the shows. Rooms were ok, but mattress was so awful...we could feel the springs in our ribcage and woke up with back pain every day.
Stayed at Palma Reale a few years ago and it was 10 times better than this place, but i've learned my lesson this time...spend a bit more to get a bit better!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quebec City, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2012

An excellent, well kept resort, with staff that truly care about their jobs. The grounds were immaculate, reception staff were very accomodating, buffet and a la carte meals were very good.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Roc Arenas Doradas

Address: Autopista Varadero km 17 | Playa de los Tainos, Varadero, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#19 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
#21 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Roc Arenas Doradas 3.5*
Number of rooms: 316
Also Known As:
Arenas Doradas Varadero
Arenas Doradas Cuba

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