We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Best hotel in Holguin” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa

We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Holguin
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa
You added Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa to your Saves list
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Playa Esmeralda, Crta Guardalavaca, Holguin 007, Cuba   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 10 Hotels in Holguin
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Best hotel in Holguin”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

After what must only be described as an 'underwhelming' trip to Cuba at the neighbouring Blau Costa Verde in 2008, my wife and I decided to book the Paradisus Rio De Oro (PRDO) after reading the excellent reviews on TripAdvisor. Overall, it's safe to say that there are many positives to staying at this resort, and it certainly is the better option for all who visit Holguin, but it isn't without its (small) faults, which I'm sure could easily be rectified.

Checking in...

Upon arrival, my wife and I were greeted by a smiling lady who later identified herself as the Honeymoon Co-ordinator (Iraida), who took us to a private air conditioned office for a private check in. We were welcomed with a glass of sparkling wine, and a warm welcome to the hotel. Iraida told us of all the amenities available at the hotel, and promptly advised that she had booked us into a honeymoon room (corner room with larger bed) in block 39, which was ideal for both the main lobby and the pool area. Check in was quick, and we were soon whisked off to our room.

The room...

The room in block 39 was what we'd expected in terms of decoration - traditionally Cuban. It featured everything you'd expect from a hotel room in any package holiday resort these days, including television, coffee machine, safe, hair dryer, towels, robes and even an iron and ironing board. Unfortunately, the air conditioning in this room was quite lacklustre, and upon speaking with some other guests it became apparent that it wasn't just ours. By no means did this make the room uncomfortable, but it wasn't as cool as we'd have liked it to be. The bathroom could certainly do with being renovated - in no way did it reflect a 5* (even by Cuban standards) resort, but everything worked and it was purely aesthetics that let it down. I am of the understanding that the resort is renovating its rooms but this may take some time, understandably.

The grounds...

After checking in, we took our first look at the grounds around the resort and we were instantly impressed. The hotel obviously takes a lot of pride in its surrounds, and you can see this everywhere with every bush, flower, tree, fountain and pathway - all immaculately kept thanks to the hard work of the groundskeepers.

The resort isn't as large as you'd think it would be, and took us less than a day to get our bearings. The main lobby is on the other end of the hotel to the pool and the beach, and it's a good 10 minutes to walk from one to the other. The hotel offers one shop which holds drinks, (limited) snacks and (limited) personal care products, as well as a small range of Cuban souvenirs. It also offers a cigar shop which sells cigarettes and associated paraphernalia, a gym (though we never visited), a spa (more on that later) and a Club House where the animation team are based.

Food & Drink...

The Hotel has a buffet-style restaurant, a poolside snack bar, a beach restaurant and five a la carte restaurants: 'International' cuisine El Patio, a Japanese-style teppanyaki restaurant, a Cuban restaurant, the Mediterranean and the 'exclusive' Royal Service restaurant.

Unfortunately for us, the hotel was operating at less than 40% capacity during our stay and as a result the buffet selection seemed quite sparse at times. Nonetheless, the variation of food and the quality of it was great during breakfast and dinner, but lunch was very restrictive. It was also unfortunate that during our first week at the hotel, we only ate in one a la carte restaurant. The hotel advised us that we couldn't book any dinner reservations the first week because they were 'very busy'. However, it soon transpired that the hotel was in fact only opening the odd one or two restaurants in the evening, and yet when a large number of holiday-makers such as ourselves complained about not being able to get into any restaurants, they did nothing to appease demand. We found this incredibly frustrating as we'd booked through Thomas Cook under the impression we were guaranteed to eat in each once per week.

The beach restaurant and the poolside snack bar offered the same menu of a la carte-style options throughout the day, comprising stodgy snacks such as hamburgers, hot dogs and toasties, to more healthy options like salad and fish. There was enough to keep both my wife and I happy and we chose to eat at both during lunch moreso than the limited buffet.

We did manage to eat at all the a la carte restaurants in the second week, and found them all to be very good. The Japanese restaurant was a good night out (ensure you go on the show table), although because it's such a show in preparing your food, it's a long night. The food was delicious though and freshly prepared in front of your eyes in traditional teppanyaki style (though how authentic milk is, I'm not entirely sure!). We enjoyed the Cuban restaurant too, although it must be said that Cuban food is very bland by nature, so don't go there expecting a taste explosion in your mouth as you won't get one! The food was cooked well and the portions decent. El Patio (the international) was delicious too. It's effectively a variation on the Mediterranean restaurant (which was also delicious), and should be a French / Italian but doesn't quite have the gusto to say it is. Royal Service restaurant we found to be hit and miss. We ate there on a few occasions because we upgraded, and found two out of three times we came out feeling underwhelmed.

Whilst we were at the hotel, we were invited to a special 'romantic dinner' in the beach restaurant because we were celebrating our honeymoon. The night was a great night, with the general manager and his team there to greet us and the food was nothing short of delicious. We also attended the Royal Service's 'Colour night' which again was spectacular.

I've read a few reviews from people complaining about the drinks at the resort, especially the wine, but we had no issues with them at all. Cuba is a country that suffers from an importing system that means when they run out of items, they could run out for a while. This of course extends to drinks, but we always found the bars plentiful. Sometimes they wouldn't have mint for a mojito, but honestly who cares when there are copious other choices to make? The wine, whilst not especially for the wine connoisseurs amongst us, was drinkable and didn't let us down. Can't comment on the red, because we didn't try any.

The Spa...

On two occasions we visited the Spa, which we would highly recommend. It boasts sun showers, steam room, sauna, foot baths, a relaxation room, saltwater pool, beach, sun terrace and outside jacuzzi. On the two occasions we went there, we found it extremely quiet and peaceful, resulting in total relaxation. We had a couples massage whilst there, which was extremely good value for money and the best massage we've ever had. The only complaint I'd have is that the changing rooms are not very private, and are unisex. Also the toilets (again, unisex) didn't have any locks on the cubicle doors.

Royal Service...

On the second week of our stay, we upgraded to the Royal Service. This was purely because the main pool was being refurbished and there wasn't an acceptable alternative other than to upgrade to use the Royal Service pool. The Royal Service is an exclusive area of the resort which is hidden away from the main resort, and is accessible via a lengthy walk or by buggy transfer. It boasts its own infinity pool, lobby bar, saloon and beach with beach bar, as well as offering guests a higher standard of room and better service (supposedly).

Checking out of our main room and into our new Royal Service room was easy, with the staff taking care of our baggage etc. We were introduced our butler upon check-in but aside from showing us around our room and delivering our room service order once, the whole 'butler' experience was a bit underwhelming - I often saw him meandering at the beach bar as opposed to doing anything else, which was a shame.

The rooms in the Royal Service were very nice - I can't explain how much of an improvement on the main resort rooms they are! Though in fairness, this standard of room should be standard at a 5* resort in the first place. It benefited from a spacious front area and an amazing bathroom with his and hers sinks as well as a jacuzzi bath and outdoor shower. The bath took an age to run so we never benefited from the jacuzzi bath, and took a liking to the outdoor shower instead. We were told by our butler that he would run our bath for us, but we needed to give him 2 days notice, which was a bit ridiculous so we never used this service.

The Royal Service, upon first arriving, was supposed to be that little bit more special and exclusive, however we found as early as the second day that it was more isolated than exclusive and service was incredibly slow. The morning staff in the restaurant were often dismissive and uncooperative, and the morning / afternoon staff in the lobby bar were unavailable or downright rude. At one point, one member of staff perused the entire pool area and asked everyone but us three times if they wanted a drink. I ended up going up to the bar to request my own, which was no big deal, and the next time she came around the pool area asking for drinks, she completely dismissed my wife as she asked for a refill and simply spoke to me - which wasn't appreciated at all.

It was also frustrating that there was a severe lack of amenities at the Royal Service. We found ourselves going down to the main resort during the day to play pool, go to the shop etc. The hotel could benefit by offering more to Royal Service guests, not less.

On the Friday (four days before we departed), there was a sudden influx of Royal Service guests, and as a result we couldn't get a sun bed around the pool. There wasn't an increase in staff either to cater for these guests and obtaining a drink was slow and frustrating. The pool bar in the six days we stayed there never opened, and it wasn't clear how we could get a snack between restaurant openings, so we ended up going back to our room and ordering room service more than once.


Many repeat guests at the PRDO say they return because of the staff, and it's clear as to why. I've never been to a hotel where the staff are so professional, personable and hardworking (aside from one or two in the Royal Service). Iraida (honeymoon co-ordinator) was brilliant - she helped us organise trips out, obtain bookings in the restaurants in the second week, and was on hand to ensure our stay was as good as it should be. In the main lobby bar, Yander was the standout member of staff - extremely helpful, polite and always made that extra effort to ask us how we are, engage in conversation and make sure we had drinks. I also found Alien on hand to help, and very personable too. Of the other staff, Jorge who drives the buggies, alongside Carlos, were exceptional. We always smiled when they were the ones giving us a lift to and from various places as the ride was pleasant and enjoyable because of their hospitality. Carlos, the food and beverage manager, is a credit to the hotel. It didn't matter where we were - breakfast, lunch or dinner - he was there, smiling, ensuring we were OK, taking time out for all the guests. We joked that there must be three of him because he's so visible all the time. I must also mention Dania and Esperanza who were exceptional waitresses and such a pleasure to be around.


Overall, our stay at the PRDO was a good one. The staff are great and the entertainment was decent enough at night too. Food was good and drink plentiful and the rooms were accommodating both at the main resort and the Royal Service. However, what has halted me giving this five stars is the frustrations felt whilst at the resort over the two weeks.

As I've already mentioned, the Royal Service was a big let down and it was hugely disappointing not to be able to enjoy the a la carte restaurants both weeks. However, it was the handling of the pool closure that really put a dampner on our honeymoon.

We were advised prior to arriving that the pool would be closed for renovations during our stay, and that we'd be able to utilise the four star pool in the neighbouring hotel during this period. Given that the hotel was a good 25 minute walk, this was simply unacceptable. The hotel put on no special buggies to transport guests to and from the hotel despite saying they would in their communication to us, and there was no 'wider range of gastronomic options' as promised - if anything, this was even more limited due to the poolside snack bar being closed.

We also found it difficult to book excursions with the hotel. We booked four, of which three were cancelled and we therefore didn't explore Cuba as much as we'd have liked to. Fortunately, on our previous trip in 2008 we booked a number with Thomas Cook so we have seen Cuba, but we didn't want to repeat these trips again this time around which is why we looked to the hotel's own excursions. I feel more could've been done to accommodate our interest in these excursions.

Overall, if you're looking for somewhere that's relaxing, set in beautiful surrounds and with a good range of food and drink, do come to the PRDO. I do feel it's the best hotel in Holguin and if I do return it would be to this hotel. I imagine many of our frustrations on this particular holiday were caused through a mixture of renovation work and a hotel operating under capacity, and it's such a shame because otherwise this hotel may have been perfect.

Room Tip: Ask for an upstairs room to avoid ants, and ask for a recently renovated room too if staying in the...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, August 4, 2014
Dear T_Lay1985,

We appreciate very much your time to describe your experience about your recent stay in our resort.
We truly regret for not being able to provide you with the expected satisfaction, we have looked into each of the issues mentioned with the involved departments so they never occur again. Please, accept our most sincere apologies.
It is a pleasure to let you know that our swimming pool is back to operation again, all new and amazing! We truly hope to have the opportunity to welcome you again at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa.

With kindest regards,

Jean-Marc Rousseau
Director General
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

3,490 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
See reviews for
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (750)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Manchester UK
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

I have just returned from the PRDO after having a great honeymoon there, staying at the main resort in the first week and the Royal Service in the second week. The hotel is set in beautiful grounds, with the gardeners working tirelessly to keep it looking like a real tropical paradise. We went to the spa twice and would really recommend it, the pool, beach and service there make for a really luxurious and romantic experience and the massages are great, the firmest massage you'll ever get! The staff in the spa were very attentive. The best thing about the main resort is the staff, Aveda the Honeymoon coordinator was brilliant, making sure we had everything we needed and organising some fantastic meals and events for us. The staff at the lobby bar are great, really quick, efficient and friendly- especially Yander and Alien. The hotel was only at 30% capacity when we were there and this had plus sides and down sides, it meant that we had a great selection of sun beds and we never had to wait for drinks but unfortunately the hotel chose to close the restaurants on many nights meaning that we could not get into any in the main resort until 5 days into our stay! If people can't get into a restaurant they need to open them more often. This is not acceptable when Thomas Cook say you are guaranteed 3 a la carte's a week and especially when the hotel is at low occupancy but they did allow us to eat at Los Helechos in the first week which was really nice.
I need to make a special mention about the food, as it really is fantastic, not just for Cuba but for anywhere. Carlos the food and beverages manager has done a brilliant job and is one of the friendliest, attentive and hard working people I have met and is a real asset to the hotel. The portions are small which is great as it means that you can have three or four courses every night without feeling overly full (or putting on too much weight!). The buffet for breakfast is also very impressive with a huge array of meats, cheeses, pastries, doughnuts, fruits and eggs in every possible way imaginable! Lunch at the buffet was low key but great for salads and very tasty paella type rice dishes and fresh meats and fish for grilling on the spot- but we often preferred the beach restaurant which has a lovely view and a good choice of dishes. The best restaurants were the Mediterranean (great carpaccio and authentic style carbonara with eggs & bacon like it's supposed to be) and the Japanese which is great fun, although it would be nice if the sushi used fresh raw salmon rather than smoked salmon but all the food was very tasty.

The Royal service is very picturesque and the rooms are really well appointed, worth the upgrade definitely. The food at the restaurant is really very good fine dining, especially the colour meal evening where we had one of the nicest fillets of beef I've had, served pink as it should be- a real treat for Cuba! Our only let down about the Royal service was the customer service, we found the staff to be not as friendly or upbeat as in the main resort, especially at Los Helechos for breakfast and lunch, we found one of the waitresses to be particularly difficult with a 'no can do' attitude- for instance when ordering a pasta dish once I asked if I could order a side salad to which she said I can only order from the menu so had to order a salad full of tuna, eggs and anchovies that I didn't need. We also tried to order a cocktail we saw on the back of the menu to which she said "you're not supposed to open this part of the menu, we don't do these cocktails". We also found that in the mornings/early afternoons the bar service was slow or even non existent around the pool until the very lovely friendly lady started her shift in the afternoon.

The hotel offers a fantastic range of activities and the animation team, especially Aggi work really hard to make your stay a fun one. We had booked on 4 of the hotel excursion but unfortunately 3 of which were cancelled due to low uptake which was very disappointing as they looked very interesting.

The pool closure I feel has been a big issue, with the pool restaurant closure meaning a more restricted choice at lunchtime/daytime snacks and the arrangements to use next door's pool being unacceptable. You do not pay to stay at a five star adult only resort to have to walk a good mile in the heat to get to a four star resort full of kids! As a result the Royal Service pool ended up being packed as people chose to upgrade which meant that not only was the main resort effected but also the quality and atmosphere of RS. One day we couldn't get a sunbed round the pool at all at the RS- not great when you're paying 105 CUC extra a night to stay there!

Overall we had a great Honeymoon with some fantastic meals with just a few areas for improvement. We would very much like to return in the future but would not do so whilst the main pool is closed- even in the Royal Service as this has unfortunately had a knock-on effect.

Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 28, 2014
Dear emalu1,

Thank you so much for sharing your experience with other travelers in TripAdvisor, as well as for letting us know your opinion, which is very important in our everyday work for your satisfaction. We have looked into the Royal Service aspects with its staff, as well as each of the other aspects with its respective teams. We truly regret not being able to provide you with the expected satisfaction in those areas. About the pool, it really needed the work that is being done and after it is finished, which will be very soon, we will be able to offer an excellent pool with the quality that all you, our precious clients, deserve.
All our staff and I would love to have you back at Paradisus Rio de Oro and its Royal Service, and we will like to receive your news as you start making your plans please, we will be at your total disposal for anything you need.
Sincerely yours,

Lorenzo Rubio
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Weymouth, United Kingdom
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

We went here on our honeymoon and had a fantastic stay.
The food was excellent (except the italian avoid that one!) and the staff every so helpful.
There really is no need to upgrade as the basic rooms are amazing! (but obviously i can only imagine how good the upgraded rooms would be.)
they were in the process of upgrading the hotel whilst we were there but caused no disturbances and the beach is stunning!
the evening food (not restaurants which you can book in advance) are self service but there are chefs cooking all sorts fresh for you! the pool and beach bars are waitressed in the day serving a lovely selection of food!
Really was an amazing place!

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 28, 2014
Dear chic_sailer,

It is a great pleasure to know you enjoyed your honeymoon so much at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa! We truly hope to have you back next year for the celebration of your 1st Wedding Anniversary. We will love to receive news from you and to help arrange anything you might need. Thank you!
Sincerely yours,

Lorenzo Rubio
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

We visited the PRDO as first timers (two couples in their 40's). We were greeted at the hotel with champagne and fresh flannels - which was a lovely welcome touch. Check-in was quick and easy and all of our prior email requests had been met. Both couples had been allocated rooms in renovated block 11.The room facilities were great, we had a spacious well equipped main room with large modern bathroom/dressing room. The free safe was a good plus factor. The maid and mini-bar service was excellent. We occasionally left them a post-it of thanks or a request, and our needs were always understood and met that day.  We met our maid on a couple of occasions who greeted us with a friendly smile and often left us with some fabulous towel creations, which showed her great sense of humour :-)

Food wise, the evening buffet was 'ok' with the deserts being excellent. The breakfast buffet was good. The simple sugar topped cookies are to die for. 'Pastry chef' - you won my heart with that biscuit recipe! Also, the mango was the best I have ever eaten. We visited all the a la carte restaurants on more than one occasion including the Royal Service, and enjoyed each of them, all offering a different ambience. The pool and beach restaurant have a good range of food at lunch time, with something to suit all. 

Our group enjoyed the spa day, starting the day with a treatment, all choosing a different  massage. Each of us said that our massage was excellent, I had 50 minutes concentrating on my legs only and my pins felt amazing for the rest of the holiday. 
Cocktails in my opinion were nothing to write home about! I'd read several comments about the mojito's but I'm afraid to say, the ingredients didn't deliver what is normally a delicious drink. However, champagne was readily available and the piña coladas were refreshing. Be aware that there is not the usual Pepsi or Coke out there, so the equivalent is a little different.

The animation team are not pushy and offer plenty of activities to those who want to partake. The evening entertainment is varied with superb singers, dancers, magician. We particularly enjoyed the beach party and operatic singers.

The staff really help make this hotel and it was excellent to find the deputy manager (Carlos) around the resort nearly every day, taking time to ensure that each and every holiday maker was happy, this personal touch from someone who recognised faces each day was very commendable. The staff throughout the hotel are all very friendly and helpful and though there is no expectation of tips, they are politely grateful when you do. The majority of them go out of their way to make your stay a great one. Well done to you all, you do a fantastic job :-)

Cuban people outside of resort are lovely too, and seeing the Cuban countryside was a real eye opener and i highly recommend that you try getting out. We took a half day out to visit a plantation and small museum and finished off the trip with a meal at a family run restaurant by a lake, which was thoroughly enjoyable. Some of our group also visited the nearby market, using the horse and cart service direct from the hotel.

At the end of our stay, we received a send off from Carlos, the animation team and the Cuban musicians, which was a pleasant surprise, waving us off as friends of Cuba.

My personal view, and though our group had a great holiday... Is that this hotel tends to attract honeymooners and the 55+ age group, so it may be a few years before we consider returning, however that said, we thoroughly enjoyed our stay :-) 

What the hotel could do to improve: 
Include a drinks service on the beach (although a walk to the nearby beach bar is no issue and is a good way of getting out of the sun from time to time, beach service would just offer that extra 5* touch). 
Renovate the spa pool, as it is looking a little shabby in places.
At the Spa,  after our treatments we found that there were few staff around to provide fresh water (there are jugs of water left on the side which have different fruits in them, but by the afternoon, they are quite warm and slightly off-tasting).
The jacuzzis around the main resort pool needs a revamp, at times they were quite dirty.
A la carte restaurants - we noticed a slight dip in the service on busier evenings.  nothing major, though worth the hotel being aware of so that they can address and maybe put a few more staff on when higher numbers of reservations have been accepted.  
Food was very good at the Royal Service restaurant, though the restaurant lacks a bit of atmosphere. 

I hope that this helps.

Room Tip: Block 11 is close to lobby and the rooms are renovated to a great standard.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 28, 2014
Dear Mossabbo,

We really appreciate your feedback and the suggestions, yes, they do help! It is important to have your view as clients as you are our main reason of existing, so thank you very much! We are glad to read that you enjoyed your stay at the hotel and truly hope to have you back, please, do not wait much, as we will all be very pleased to see you and welcome you as part of our big family that you already are!

Sincerely yours,
Lorenzo Rubio
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brampton, Canada
1 review
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2014

We just returned from our week at the Paradisus, and generally were disappointed. We learned just before our trip that the pool would be closed for renovations, but we were happy to hear that we would be compensated for the inconvenience with $1,000 worth of coupons for services and products at the hotel (and that we would be transported to the neighbouring hotel anytime we wanted to use their pool and facilties). The $1,000 in coupons were a sham. To use ANY of the coupons it would cost us more money. The spa coupons were for 50 pesos each, but the massages (or any other service at the spa) were at least 118 pesos. Upgrading the room (a 400 pesos coupon) would be a minimum of 700 pesos per person more than the coupon reduction. When we trying to use the neighbouring hotel's pool we were treated like criminals, and we were told we were prohibited from the hotel property. Sol Luna and Mares management had had no communication with the Paradisus regarding anyone from our hotel using their pool or their facilties. And we were given no communication from the Paradisus as to how this was going to happen. Why it took until just before we left for our holidays to inform us that the pool would be closed is a whole other issue. I understand renovating the pool is an annual occurance, and it should have been clearly stated this was the case PRIOR to any bookings. Two days later we found a slip of paper under our doors stating we had to get a pass from reception on a daily basis. This is not the type of communication we would expect from a 5 star hotel. Also, when we arrived late Sunday evening, we found the air conditioning unit in our room was not working. A 5 star hotel should have had rooms ready for occupation, fully functional. After reading trip advisor, we were aware that we would have to sign up for a la carte restaurants very quickly. When we arrived on Sunday it was too late to make reservations, so we did it first thing Monday. When attempting to make our 4 reservations (as was advertised), we were totally unable to do this. We got one reservation, and was told that all other dates were booked up. Due to the pool being closed, we got a dinner booking at the Royal Service restaurant. Again, this is not service we expect from a 5 star hotel. After complaining to our travel rep and customer service, we were granted one more a la carte restaurant and one more Royal Service restaurant reservation. Late Saturday afternoon we received an apologetic phone call and piece of paper stating they had over-booked the RS restaurant, and that our reservation was cancelled. I negotiated "compensation" in the form of a late check out time, only to find out Sunday (the day we left), that we were locked out of our hotel room, since no one at customer service had been informed that we had until 5pm to check out without extra charges. After some discussion we were allowed back into our rooms to pack. Totally unacceptable treatment, for any hotel, much less a 5 star.
We had heard such wonderful things about the Paradisus and we were very very disappointed that the wonderful reviews were NOT reality for us. And, as the saying goes, when you have a good experience, you tell friends when they ask how your holiday was. However, when you have a very poor experience, you want to make sure everyone knows. The Paradisus needs to have a lot of improvements before we would think to return. As for improvements, they should start by repairing the webbing keeping out the birds from the buffet restaurant. Finding bird poop on your table just before you dine is a huge turnoff, to say nothing of a health issue! And make sure that what you advertise to provide lives up to it in reality. Make sure that just because it may be a slow time for the hotel, that you have enough people working to be able to service the people who care enough to register with your hotel.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 28, 2014
Dear Lela L,

Thank you very much for sharing your review with other travelers in TripAdvisor. We appreciate your opinión and suggestions as they always help us on our work for your satisfaction. Please, let me explain that the Resort Credit 1000 gift voucher is a promotion that is in place at the hotel as well as in all the other Paradisus hotels in Cuba, totally independent from the renovation of the pool of our hotel, and it is a gift for partially cover specific extra services during your stay.
Your comments are very important and useful for us. We truly regret not being able to provide you with the expected satisfaction in some of our areas. The pool really needed the work that is being done and after it is finished, which will be very soon, we will be able to offer an excellent pool with the quality that all you, our precious clients, deserve. We have looked into the incidents in the first day of pool closure and discussed them with the involved parts, as well as the ones related to the restaurants, please, accept our most sincere apologies. Despite this, we would sincerely like and appreciate to have a new opportunity to welcome you and make of your next stay a totally memorable experience!

With kind regards,

Lorenzo Rubio
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

This was my 3rd visit to the Paradisus. Its my favorite resort, I do find it pretty perfect: its calm, clean, friendly, good food , incredible beach good for snorkelling, comfy rooms & beds. I dont have anything negative to say, which is why I keep going back.
This time I went in July, the resort was very quite, not many people go to Cuba in July - maybe a little too quite for my liking but you are sure to have peace & quite.
People who go here are not looking to party, which is a good thing. Its a all adult resort for respectful adults wanting to down time to recup from work or other. Couples having a romantic get away. If you want nightlife & party, go elsewhere.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 28, 2014
Dear Roxane11,
It gives us great satisfaction to read that you enjoyed so much your 3rd stay at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa and it is our honor to be considered by you your favorite resort!
We look forward to having you back very soon, and thank you for being part of our big family!
Sincerely yours,
Lorenzo Rubio
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brampton, Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2014

Upon arrival I received $1000 in hotel credits! The next day I requested a room upgrade! I was told (after being satirized by the staff) the priize was $48 extra per night! Eventhough I had $400 in room upgrade coupons I was told that only $100 could be used and the rest would be paid by me! That upgrade would have cost me less if bought beforehand! Paradisus also has the honor of being the first hotel in over 14 trips & 8 hotels in Cuba to refuse my request of punching a hole in the access card in order to hook it to something and avoid losing it! Room service was a mess! The buffet went down, no gorgozola cheese or white asparagus! On the other hand! The hotel is spectacular, the location is magnificent, the best snorkling ever, and it included scuba diving!

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Director General at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, August 9, 2014
Dear algal154982,

Thank you for your comments about your recent stay in Paradisus Rio de Oro. We have looked into your observations with the Front Desk Department, as the explanation of the procedures of the Resort Credit vouchers was obviously not correctly transmitted and we truly apologize for it, cause of your dissatisfaction.

We regret not being able to punch your key. Please be informed that room keys are not disposable, but used for other coming guests following your holidays. We truly appreciate your understanding on the matter.

All our staff and I would like to welcome you back so you can enjoy our haven of peace again. We will love to hear from you in the future and to assist in making your next stay the most memorable one.

Sincerely yours,

Jean-Marc Rousseau
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa

Address: Playa Esmeralda, Crta Guardalavaca, Holguin 007, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Holguin Province > Holguin
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Holguin
#1 Luxury Hotel in Holguin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 354
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

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.