My wife and I first came to Cuba back in 2009 where we spent the first 3 days in Havana and the remaining 10 days at the Sol Luna Y Mares. We returned to the island this time for a straight two weeks at PRDO as we were very impressed with the beach and hotel when we were here the last time.
I contacted the hotel a couple of months prior to arrange an upgrade to the Deluxe Junior Suites - payable on arrival, which is far, far cheaper than booking with First Choice and, personally speaking, well worth it. I also made provisional bookings for the a la carte restaurants. So with that, and the fact that we had also upgraded to Premium Class for the flights, we were all set to go.
We had booked in to the Radisson (Manchester) the night before so took advantage of the early check-in facility on offer – checked-in luggage that night.
Flight was really good, as it always has been (so far) when we have travelled long haul with First Choice, good food and in-flight entertainment, no complaints. This upgrade, again for us, is worth it.
We had booked private transport from the airport so we were able to leave in good time and arrived at the hotel well before the masses. Check in, cold drink/refreshing cloth and buggy to the accommodation all within 10 mins. Perfect.
I will not go into any great depth about the hotel facilities, because if you’re planning to go here you will already have done your homework, hopefully.
The standard of accommodation is satisfactory (yes – a bit tired) but far better than the sister hotel Melia Santiago de Cuba which we stayed in as part of our two day trip to that city. Great people who accompanied us on the trip, which made up for the slightly disappointing visit/tour.
We spent most of our time at the beach or in the ‘back garden’ sunning it, so can’t really comment on the main pool other than it wasn’t all that busy when we were there and sun lounger availability didn’t seem to be a problem.
The staff are definitely what makes this hotel, and as far as tipping goes, I don’t think it made any difference to the service my wife and I received, which was always first class.
I thought the buffet restaurant was good as were the a la carte’s with the ‘International’ being our favourite – both for service and food.
The beach was a massive disappointment. Sun loungers were squeezed into a very small area because of the effects of erosion from the tide which left a small area in which to put the beds out. Land has had to be reclaimed from the back, wooded side which underfoot is now very hot because of the earth/sand mix compared to the beach sand which is never hot. The original steps down from the swimming pool area to the beach are defunct as they lead directly onto the rocks now. Altogether not very appealing.
My main gripe about the hotel was the amount of people who did not dress as per the dress code at the a la carte restaurants and buffet restaurant. The dress code is quite clearly mentioned in all documentation relating to the hotel, both at the time of booking and at the hotel itself, no matter what country you come from. Why then do so many disregard this, it’s beyond me. The hotel staff should take a harder line on this as it is a bit hit-and-miss to say the least. It also seems that the dress standard is aimed solely at the male population, because certain younger females seemed to dress as they pleased, some wearing beach clothing at the evening buffet service to give one example. While I don’t wish to appear a whinging old fart, I do think that if you have booked to stay at a certain class of hotel you must abide by the rules otherwise what is the point of having them in the first place. If you want to wear tee shirts and shorts at evening meals, go to another hotel - Magaluf perhaps? – it’s quite simple.
To summarise; fantastic flight (in and out), super friendly people, great service, good hotel, nice room, average entertainment, poor beach (move up to Sol Luna Y Mares beach) .
Now we've done the ‘Cuban thing’, time to return to the Maldives I think or even further afield. Bora Bora in French Polynesia would be the preferred choice - when the lottery win comes up of course.
Any Q’s please PM me.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the Bahia de Naranjo Natural Park, in Playa Esmeralda, on the northern coast of Holguin province. Five-Star Ultra All Inclusive Eco-Resort with 354 rooms. Conceived only for adults aged 18 years or more. Maximum comfort and perfection in its private Royal Service area for a fabulous experience in a world apart. Recommended for weddings, honeymoons, incentive trips and wellness/spa.Guest Rooms 354 rooms: 254 Junior Suite, 24 Junior Suite Deluxe, 16 Junior Suite Deluxe Ocean View, 2 Suite Deluxe, 36 Master Junior Suite Royal Service, 14 Master Junior Suite Ocean View Royal Service, 6 Master Junior Suite Luxury Royal Service, 2 Garden Villa Royal Service. Dining: 8 Restaurants (A la Carte, Buffet), 5 Bars. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Paradisus Rio De Oro Resort And Spa
- Paradisus Rio De Oro Hotel Holguin
- Paradisus Hotel Guardalavaca
- Rio De Oro Paradisus
- Paradisus Rio De Oro Cuba
- Hotel Paradisus Rio De Oro
- Paradisus Rio De Oro Resort & Spa Cuba/Holguin