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“Good Value” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Gaviota La Estrella

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Gaviota La Estrella
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5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   52610 , Cuba (Formerly Husa Cayo Santa Maria Beach)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #10 of 11 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Ontario
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Good Value”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

My husband and I and our 2 daughters (ages 9 &12) spent Jan 23-30 at Husa. I strongly believe we got what we paid for. It was NOT a luxurious resort but it had everything we needed, it was clean, it was decently looked after.
A few tips/thoughts and observations:
The beach is breathtaking. Clean, clear turquoise water and white sand. Very little shells or seaweed on the beach. They will hang a flag out to let you know if it is safe to swim. ( red, green or yellow) There is shade if required. Paddle boats, kayaks and boats to use at no cost. Some entertainment too (cute contests for a prize that were fun) Bring loads of sunscreen. Not much to see for snorkelers here though.
The rooms are small and very basic. The lighting in the bathroom area is horrible. Don’t bother bringing your blow dryer or curling/straightening irons as the hydro there cannot handle them. In fact, there isn’t even an outlet near the mirror to use anyway. They have blow dryers……but be prepared; the wind will likely dry your hair quicker.
The pools are huge. They are very kid friendly ( shallow) and each pool has one bar that you can also swim up to. There is a pool on each side of the resort. The one near the kids club is less busy. There are plenty of chairs. Bring your insulated Bubba cups!
We took the catamaran excursion that included snorkeling, dolphin interaction, lobster lunch and a swim at a private beach. It was fantastic. $300 for the four of us. Bring your towels.
We were advised that the food in Cuba was not the greatest….and that was an understatement! The restaurants were better than the mystery buffet but still not great. (Two are offsite but a short distance by golf cart) Bring ketchup, peanut butter and salad dressing (there is a small fridge in the room).
Breakfast buffet: omelets, crepes and grilled cheese were tolerable. Lunch/dinner buffet: the only thing I would eat was the rice stir fry that they make right in front of you. Sadly you always had to wait in long lines for these things. They have a decent “salad bar” but the only dressing offered was a giant bowl of mayonnaise-like stuff that was awful.
Lastly, bring flashlights and carry them with you at night. The power goes out often and it’s DARK!
Staff was friendly and helpful !

Room Tip: All the rooms are the same size. Closest to the pool are the best. Rooms have either a king bed and...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear BAAC,
We sincerely appreciate the feedback you have written on Trip Advisor. Your comments are very helpful because they allow us to know the weak point sand tackling them. We hope that next time you visit us you will notice the improvements. By the way, there is a plug right on the hair drier, but it is designed for small electronic items. Our best wishes for your daughters. Sincerely.
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1,027 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 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 (334)
Date | Rating
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English first
Napanee, Canada
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

I have traveled to mexico 4 times before and the HUSA was so much better. We were there Jan 20-27. The transfer is a long ride from the airport to the hotel but you get to see a lot. Our check in was approximately 4 minutes long. Our room was steps from the pool and lunch grill. FOOD was great my wife and daughter (both picky) ate very well. The beach is beautiful, i have never seen a nicer beach. The housekeeper kept our room spotless, and everyday we had a note and a sculptures made from towels. The Pool was clean(a little chilly) and the bar staff at the pool was amazing. Raphael and yazmanny were the best. The evening shows were very good and very interactive. They became part of our family. I would reccomend this resort to families and groups with children. we will be back ASAP!!!!!
if you have questions please email me mike_rodrigues@live.com

Room Tip: ask for a upper floor with a balcony
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 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.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear mike r,
We are delighted that you had a pleasant stay at the Hotel HUSA. We are also pleased you recommend our hotel and we hope to see you again among us. Raphael, Yasmany and all the staff appreciate your beautiful words. Sincerely.
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Woodstock, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014 via mobile

It's sure not a five star but if you go with lowered expectations it's not too bad. We went to a couple of the a la carte's (romantic and Italian) which (combined with the lowered exp) wasn't too bad as well. Bring some FRANK'S and KETCHUP (in the little packets I think would be best). They have stuff that looks like ketchup but isn't.
DON'T FORGET TO TAKE YOUR DRINKING MUG!
If you forget you'll be drinking from a little plastic cup all week long. I saw a Ton of Bubbas (from Canadian Tire).
Their Cappuccinos are incredible along with the rest of their coffees.
They have all right entertainment during the day, but it gets a little annoying when your relaxing by the pool and they're do their entertainment.
One night during the week there is a carnival in the little town down the way. It's pretty fun for $20. That covers all your drinks for the night, entertainment and entry. They have a foam party which is a lot of fun.
At nighttime don't forget to bring a little LED flashlight. We were right in the middle of our one dinner in the village when the power went off. We turned on our flashlight, ate the last of our meal then walked back to the resort (5min walk). We looked for the rest of our party in the resort's buffet. When we got there all the workers were there and they were right by a little 3man band and everyone was dancing and having a great time.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear Rob D,
We are very glad you enjoyed during your stay at the Hotel HUSA and keep a good memory of the carnival at Pueblo ¨La Estrella¨ and the little music band at the buffet. We apologize for the outage although it doesn’t depend on our management, but due to shortcomings in the infrastructure. We'd love to see you with us again during your next visit to Cuba. Kind regards.
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Barrie, Canada
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

Just came back from 2 weeks at Husa Jan 19-Feb 2, with my husband and 2 children, 4 & 10. We had an amazing trip and were sad to leave. Beach was the most beautiful beach I have ever seen, rooms were nice and clean, grounds and pools were great we loved the more quiet pool with the cave by the mini kids club. My kids lovvvvvveeeeeeddddd the kids club. Especially Elizabeth :D They would only go on the days she was working, absolutely amazing lady who truly loves the children. It shows in how much they love her :D They had fun activities at the kids club and even had clowns that would drop in and put on shows and play games with the children. Anyone with kids of all ages, this is the resort for u :D food was great for Cuba, long lines for the really good stuff but worth the wait. You will not go hungry, we all found lots to eat…Most importantly NONE of us got sick :D Will def be going back already missing Angel the gardner and Elizabeth from the Mini Club they made us fell like family :D

Room Tip: We were in room 1062 its located in the centre of the resort on the 3rd floor….the higher the floor...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear CrystalMac82 and family,
We are very pleased that you enjoyed your stay so much in the Hotel HUSA. Your nice comments fill us with satisfaction and encourage us to continue working for families like yours to spend a great holiday. On behalf of Angel, Elizabeth and all the staff we thank you for choosing this hotel. Our best wishes for your children, we expect them next year to enjoy the Mini-Club. Best regards.
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Barrie, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2014

Flight with sunwing was great
Transportation from airport to hotel not good. We travelled with our two children 5 and 7. I had to share a seat with my son and we were all separated. Check in was fine. Large resort takes a while to find everything. There is two pool areas. We liked the pool area where there is a dolphin in the pool and a big rock island. Pools were freezing. Kids lived it though. Breakfast was great. Can't go wrong with eggs, toast, bacon ext lunch is alright you have to be open to trying new things. Take advantage of the pork and fish. Bread and cheese are delicious. Pizza guy was not very nice. He seemed annoyed and overworked. He needs more help , poor guy. One night he said the pizza dough was no good and he wasn't making personal pizzas. We said we still want one and he seemed pissed. There was nothing wrong with the dough, it tasted great he just didn't want to make anymore. Servers have long faces, not as accommodating as the servers we had in Varadero at breezes Bella cost verde. Elizabeth at the mini club is wonderful with the children. The shows were fantastic. Very talented people. Hot dogs, hamburgers are gross, but our kids loved them. Half the resort is under construction, waterfalls are all empty and the walkways to the beach need work. Not wheelchair friendly to the beach. Our bedroom was very clean, but the shower leaked every time all the way out the bathroom door. Could have been very dangerous for the kids. This hotel used to be a barchello and after talking to some returned travelers now that it is Husa, it is going down hill. They should get rid of the buffet and just focus on making food on the spot. The beaches were breathtaking the grounds are beautiful , lots if humming birds, butterflies ext. this trip was great value . Where else can you get a beautiful beach, food and accommodation for a family of four at 2700.00

  • Stayed January 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear Luvisotto and family,
We appreciate your comments about your stay in our hotel. No doubt, your suggestions are very useful to understand our weaknesses. We will try to solve everything in our hands. I regret for the pizza cooker´s behavior and we will take action with him. Elizabeth and all the staff thank you for choosing this hotel that, as you say, is of great value. Our best wishes for your kids. We expect them next year to enjoy the Mini-Club. Sincerely.
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Mississauga
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

Just got home from a great week at HUSA Santa Maria Cuba. Almost everything was perfect weather, food, pool the only disappointment we had was the entertainment in the evening. We did get bug bites.
We flew with Sunwing and they were great on and off the plane they were there for you in fact the last day of our great holiday I lost my waist purse and my husband's passport was in my purse and it got lost so we were in a panic but Sunwing and a traveler came to our rescue and we were fine still now a days we still have some honest people out there.

Room Tip: We had the Oceanview room second floor it was ok
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 11, 2014
Dear Yvonne W,
We are delighted that you had a pleasant stay at this hotel. According to your suggestion we will try to improve the nightly shows. We are glad that the loss of your waist purse was resolved smoothly. Sincerely.
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Vancouver
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

We stayed at the resort from January 7 to 21 and had wonderfull two weeks. Resort is surrounded with beautifull gardens and gardeners work very hard every day. I made so many friends with people that work there and I can't wait to go back and see them again. This resort is great for famillies with small kids. My son enjoyed fun at the bech pool and evening kids disco.Lots of people complain about food but I don't think they even tried so many wonderfull dishes. Some things don't look very appealing but once you tried them they are really tasty. Fried rice on the grill is better than in any restorant here in Vancouver. Grilled chicken (witch by the way taste realy good unlike one in canada unless is from small farm) is soo good, even chicken drumstics from the buffet are exelent. You have to try tomatoes they are realy tasty so is cucumber. Try little bit of everithing and I'm sure you'll find some realy good food, be adventures.
Nobody can make you have good time in any place unless you are willing to let go of small things that bother you and live in the moment in one of the most beautifull places in the world.
If you like luxury and want every small thing to be perfect this is not place for you maybe go to Royalton.
I love Cuba and Cuban people and their music so much that every time I come back home I think whole year about coming back again. And I'll be coming back to Husa for sure.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
INES_ARNAL, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Gaviota La Estrella, responded to this review, February 11, 2014
Dear SuncokretVancouver,
We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay at the Hotel HUSA. We love that you are so optimistic and face things with the best disposition. We hope to see you again soon with us. Kind regards.
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Additional Information about Gaviota La Estrella

Address: 52610 , Cuba (Formerly Husa Cayo Santa Maria Beach)
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Villa Clara Province > Cayo Santa Maria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
Hotel Class:5 star — Gaviota La Estrella 5*
Number of rooms: 1308
Also Known As:
Barcelo Cayo Santa Maria Beach And Colonial Resort
Barcelo Cayo Santa Maria Beach & Colonial Hotel Cayo Santa Maria
Cayo Santa Maria Barcelo

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