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“Eurostars (new name is Zerostars) *2ND ATTEMPT TO SUBMIT REVIEW*” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria

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Cayos de Villa Clara, Cuba   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 11 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Hamilton
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Eurostars (new name is Zerostars) *2ND ATTEMPT TO SUBMIT REVIEW*”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

Travelled Jan 7th to 14th. Let me start by saying 2 things. First, we travel 3 times a year to this CSM, we have been previously to the Sol, Melia, Royalton and the Iberostar Ensenachos(3 times) so I am comparing oranges to oranges. In fact we took a tour of this resort while staying at the Royalton in Oct. 2013. Secondly be warned that this will be an extensive review, yet as brief as possible.
Flight 718 out of Toronto Jan 7th. leaving 10:00 am. instead of 8:30 due to delays and de-icing. Not the fault of the resort. Pilot tries to land at Santa Clara at 1:30 pm. Due to fog has to re route to Varadaro(no fault of Resort). Sit in plane for 2 hours while they decide what to do. De-plane at 4:00 to sit in Varadaro Airport (NO Vouchers). Sit in Airport until 7:00 pm. when they announce it is time to line up to go and pick up our luggage so that we may be bused to Cayo Santa Maria. After standing in line 40 minutes they lead us downstairs to the luggage carousels. Our luggage doesn't come off until 8:30, after sitting in the aiport for now 4 hours. Luggage comes off on 2 different carousels. Out to the bus for the 5 and a half hour ride to our resort. There was no mention by the Nolitours rep on our bus as to the time and date of our briefing and nothing in our envelope we rec'd at the hotel. The Nolitours rep gave a very quick speech to our bus group followed by a very quick departure and left us to our 6 hour trip to the resort! No working washroom on the bus so we stop at a Canteena with all the other buses. At least 30 minutes here while the drivers get something to eat and the passengers are able to use the washrooms. After reboarding the bus we now have a new driver but no tour representative. We finally cross the causeway and begin the final leg to our resort. Unfortunately the driver, who doesn't speak English, doesn't know where he is going. After pulling into the Las Dunas to ask for directions, I try to tell him not to turn into the Playa as I know where we should be going, unfortunately he stops and asks for directions again. In spite of my insistence we also turn into the Royalton for new directions. Once again he stops at the entrance to the Memories, when thankfully a man on the bus who speaks Spanish comes to the front and tells him that he will translate my directions for him. He finally goes forward and tells him how to get to our resort.

Now for the resort. By this time at 3:35 am we are at best more that 12 hours behind our scheduled arrival. It is dark, they give us an envelope, which contains, a map with our room keys
and number and a pamphlet giving details about various phone numbers, restaurant times etc. Now the map is the size of a cigarette package and reading it at 3:30 in the morning is difficult but they have no one who can direct us to our room. The bellboys are only there to deliver your luggage. I was told that our luggage would be sent to our room and could be expected in the next 10 to 15 minutes (this will be the asnswer you will so frequently receive when you question "How long") So off we go to the the 24hr. bar for a bite to eat. No menu, only french fries, so after a refreshment and plate of french fries we head off to our room, Villa 16 furthest from the front desk. Expecting our luggage to be in our room because it is now 40 minutes later, to our surprise we had no luggage. At 4:15 I return to the front lobby, to be informed that I neglected to tell them where our luggage was to be sent. Duh, my bad I guess. While waiting for our luggage my wife investigates the room. Very nice, just like one of the ones we were shown on our tour with Eric (manager of customer service). Second floor with their so called Oceanview. Air conditioning in room was very quiet and worked very efficiently. As we are
beach people my wife notices that there are no blue beach towels, which are supposed to be in our room. We are informed by the front desk after calling, that I should be able to pick them up at the front desk in the morning (later of course because it is now about 4:30 am). After going to breakfast the next day, upon arriving at the front desk a customer service rep. who disappears for 10 min. returns to tell me that I will have to speak to the chambermaid when she arrives at 9:00, who should have some. After waiting at the room for the 9:00 maid, who we can't find, we leave for the beach at 9:30. Luckily we found 2 lounge chairs. Being seasoned Cuban travellers we had our own small towels and Canjet blankets to put on our lounge chairs. Now for the good part. The Beach...it is beautiful!!!!! (trying to be positive here) as usual and as viewed on a previous tour. The water although wavy is warmer than it was in October (very nice). After our day at the beach I went to the front desk to inquire about beach towels. The lady at the front desk made note of our room number 1629 and said a bellboy would deliver them( maybe 10-15 minutes). I went to the bank to exchange money, only to find out that they had no money(this was repeated at least 8 times over the next few days). He suggested that I try the front desk as they sometimes have some they will exchange. Same story..no money try tomorrow. Now fortunately being return visitors I do have 40 pesos which I brought with me to purchase beer at the airport, snacks, etc. and of course tips for the staff who provide excellent service.We had no chance to exchange money at the Varadaro Airport as the Cadeca was closed. Next Day, after breakfast, still no towels at the front desk or in our room, they again make note and say that the towel lady will be at our villa at 9:00 am. My wife learns that the staff who set up the " a la cartes" do not set up until 11:00 although the front desk gives out conflicting information. 9:00 on tour rep side or 9:00 in front of general store. My wife sits at desk on tour rep. side at 10:00 where 2 employees are going over charts together and my wife asks if they are in charge of reservations. They tell her yes, but she must wait until 11:00. We wait and at 11:00 my wife is allowed 1 reservation. But, we are entitled to 4 altogether. She is informed that we will have to come back again tomorrow for our 3rd one and the day after for our last one. Somewhat upset, my wife decides to locate the Nolitours Representative at the hotel. Successfully we find her and she states that this is ridiculous that we should be able to get the remaining 3 all at once. She takes down our room number and tells us she will look after it. After one day has passed, we ask the Nolitours rep about our additional a la carte reservations wherein she advises us they were sent to our room. Advised her we had not received anything as yet...as a result we missed one of our dinners. The reservations were placed into an envelope by the rep and left at the front desk for a bell boy to deliver to our room...never delivered to our room! We were given a replacement by Eric the Manager of Customer Service with his apologies. Upon further questioning my wife discovers that we have missed our briefing and orientation. Since I have already fallen for the towel game once again, we head off to the beach for the day. Another beautiful day at the beach(still trying to be positive). We discovered completely by accident that they have a daily BBQ at the Ranchon. You can start getting into line before 12:30 if you go into the eastern side of the Ranchon. No matter whether you line up early, or later you are going to have to wait 30min. at least for something hot off the BBQ. But there is other food available in trays set up in the middle of both sides of the Ranchon. Unfortunately this food gets cold unless you attack the waiters and cooks as they refill and replenish the empty trays. We also later discovered they have a BBQ area on the western side of the Ranchon as well, but unfortunately they have not figured out how to BBQ in both areas on the same day. So you either line up on one side or the other but, you are still going to wait at least 30 minutes.

Now to make this novel a little more brief I will attempt to consolodate the remaining portions of this rant. Be prepared to wait in any of the buffet areas for at least 30min. in order to get anything hot off the grills. This includes your morning omlettes, eggs, etc. Also your evening buffets for beef, pork, chicken or various pastas cooked for you. While we were there a manager had a great idea. They actually opened both sides of the Restaurant for the morning crowd, as the resort began to increase to about 1300 guests. This did seem to reduce the line ups down to
about 20 minutes.

Now the " a la Cartes". Briefly the portions are small. The lobster is overcooked no matter which a la carte you dine in. They do not require males to wear long pants or collared shirts. Cut offs, muscle shirts, t shirts, sandals, flip flops, halter tops and hats are all acceptable, even though it states on the reservation that long pants and shirts are required and no sandals. Most of the a la cartes you can get in and out in an hour. Our last one took an hour and 40 minutes. We were fortunate that we had our water glass refilled once and they did provide us with 2 half glasses of white wine each. Now, I must admit that I did not try to flag the waiter down as I expect that to be their responsibility. They are terribly overworked and very frustrated.

We were without towels for 3 days until finally Eric, the Customer Service manager asked why I was at the front desk. I explained the towel situation and he got his assistant manager to go in the back area of the lobby and he returned promptly with 2 blue beach towels. Also at another time Eric went personally to one of the Restaurants to secure our 3rd. a la carte reservation as our reservations supposedly sent by the Nolitours Rep. never arrived at our room. We were promised a fourth reservation but, didn't want to waste anymore of his time. The so called towel lady never had any beach towels the 2 times we did ask when we were fortunate to locate her. Our chambermaid, a day after we finally got our beach towels, apologized for leaving 2 beach towels in the room in place of the normal white bath towels you are supposed to recieve daily, if you leave them on the floor. You don't get any other towels that are normally customary at all the other resorts.

I almost was able to get money exchanged at the front desk when once again the bank manager said he had no money and to try the front desk. I got behind one other gentleman and he exchanged $200cdn for 173 cuc. When it was my turn I asked her how many pesos would I get for $100 canadian she said (I know you won't believe this) I am sorry we are all out.(duh).
A few other comments from bank....check back in this afternoon...I came at 1:30 that day and he said try again at maybe 3:00, 4:00 or 5:00. Sorry my sign says I'm open but I have no money.
The front desk one time told me. Yes, we will have money some time later, right now we are in the process of counting it. She couldn't tell me when they would have it available(probably wanted to say 10-15 minutes).

In conclusion, this is my opinion, this resort is not able to handle adaquately more that 800 guests. They have no managerial skills. They have very poor communication from the managers to the staff. The staff at the front desk are rude, unapologetic and only say things that they hope make you go away. They will lie to your face, even one of the customer service reps accused me of giving him the wrong room number. He even insinuated that I had too much to drink as there was a beer bottle on the counter. He stated to me that he had spoke to me only 30 min previous to that yet I had spoken to him at 1:20 and when he waved me over to tell me that I had given him the wrong room number it was 3:50. Hmmm, not your average "customer is always right "
approach. My wife was about ready for a confrontation but she said "I think he probably needs a little more Customer Service Training". My wife gave the front reception a 1 star rating as there was a living, breathing, human there!

Even the bus tour reps do not have the proper training. The day we were to leave at 8:15 guests from one of the eastern provinces, who were supposed to be leaving for the Airport for their return to Montreal forced their way onto one of the Toronto bound buses at 8:15 even though they were not to leave until 8:45. It took at least 10-15 minutes to get them off the buses. Of course they remained blocking access to the buses for the Toronto bound guests. I was really relieved to finally leave this resort. They had no passenger lists that are present at all the
other resorts that we have been to. They don't know if you are to be on the bus at all. The Montreal guests had the same kind of boarding paper as we did. No one was checking names. We had to stop at the Iberostar to pick up a family, and the gentleman had to sit in the tour guides' chair while the tour guide sat on the floor for the trip to the Airport.

In summation, we had trouble with our room key requiring it to be reprogrammed, many others had to do it repeatedly. Of course the front desk personal tells you that you "must have placed it near your cell phone or camera.". Very, very rude comments and they never look you in the eye. Our safety deposit box stopped working on our last evening....we went to the customer service desk to report it because we wanted to go for our dinner....a technician was sent to our room by bike so we had to practically run back to our room 1629 (furthest from the lobby) to make sure we were there before him (we are in our '60's) because there was no cart to take us back! But I must say the tech was there shortly after we got there to fix the safety box...which was greatly appreciated. However...we still had to walk back to the lobby for our dinner...still issues on our last night at the resort! Many of the bartenders are incapable of recognizing an order of customers even if you frequently tip. I asked one, where should I line up, you have already served 4 customers who arrived after I did. No response except, "What do you want?"

Thankfully the plane was on time, but the comments heard on the plane were almost unbelievable. ie. I didn't have a fridge for 4 days, had to threaten to bring it to the front desk. We had a great meal but the taxi to Caibarien, cost us 50pesos. On the last evening one passenger explained that the bar service improved dramatically. One of the guests actually went behind the bar and told all the guests who would like beer to line up and he would serve them. This allowed the bartenders to provide quicker service to the non beer drinkers. Wow!!!! What a novel idea and the waiters actually thanked him. This same passenger claimed there were DNA stains on their sheets and they were not changed after his request for a few days.

As mentioned previously, we have been to quite a few resorts in this area and even the Sol which is the oldest, provide a higher level of food quality and selection. Warning, this resort, in my estimation, will not improve in the next few months. It is going to take a major change in Management, Food Preparation and Service, more thorough staff training and a new Bank. People shouldn't have to go to other resorts or the La Estrella to get money when the resort advertises a Bank on premise. This resort has bookings of up to 1600 guests weekly until April. You won't want to be there when all the Students, College Kids and Montreal tourists all arrive together during the various March Breaks. The resort will not be able to cope......can you say disaster!!!!!!

In closing, if you doubt this review or any information here, please read the daily reviews over the next 2 weeks as they are posted from Jan. 7th until Jan. 14th. WE SURVIVED ZEROSTARS.....hope you do if you have already booked. Also don't expect the front desk or customer service to answer their phone. Most of the time they are broken (Duh), best to speak to a living being. Wake up service, you get a call at 6:30 when you request 6:00. This could be horrendous if you have to leave on time. The bus could very easily depart without you (as mentioned previously they don't have passenger lists) and you would be stuck for the 60-70
peso trip by taxi to the airport.

Spend your hard earned money somewhere else!

Room Tip: Try to secure a rm close to lobby....you will be heading there frequently due to front desk and cust...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Good afternoon,

First of all we want to thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

As far as the arrival day is concerned, when we receive massive check-ins the bellboys prioritize the luggage and then the guests, and the waiting time depends on the number of rooms, anyway we have always 2 bellboys for that purpose, to make it faster.

On the other hand, we have reinforced the snack bar service a manager on duty for the kitchen to make sure everything is ready for the late night orders. Until now it has worked smoothly.

Regarding the beach towels it is clearly a misunderstood between the chambermaid and the guests relation service, because you should have find them over your bed the day of your arrival or at last the moment you complaint about that.

We are terribly sorry to know that you have had troubles with the money exchange. It has been one of our weakness since the opening. We have received no enough money to offer the proper service with the fully booked hotel. Nowadays we have change the budget of the currency in the Cadeca to satisfy the needs of our guests.

Likewise as you have said there are lines in the buffets. To try to minimize that we have opened the both sides of El Ranchón and also one of the main buffets in the central area, it is a little better now, but we keep on working to find other solutions.

Your comments help us to keep on working day by day improving our services and achieve the Eurostars standards of quality and we hope you give us the opportunity in the near future to see by yourself our improvements.


Yours sincerely,

Ricardo Arencibia
FrontDesk Operation Manager
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Montreal
1 review
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

Review of disappointment in trip to "Eurostars" Hotel "Santa Maria Cuba" from, (December 29th 2013 - January 5th 2014)
Starting from the beginning;

- Air travel with “Canjet” (5 stars) Very Pleased
- Beautiful Scenic Beach (4 stars)
(it would have nicer if they would have cleaned up the plastic cups & cigarette butts from rude people)

- Beach (4 stars) Pleased
- Pool Entertainment (5 stars) Very Pleased
- Building 19 third floor, Beautiful (5 stars) Very Pleased
- Beautiful Scenic Grounds (4 stars) Pleased

Now, for the rest .. I’m sorry but;

1. We were waiting in line at the bank outside the Airport in Santa Clara, when the guide for our bus told us that we were the only ones holding up the bus!? I’m sorry, we were the last ones off the plane & were waiting in line to change our money. I told him that I had read on the internet that the hotel frequently ran out of money & that it was best to exchange our Canadian money at the Airport. He laughed at me & said “oh no! That was only last week .. one time.” So I asked him, ``Are you sure? Because we need pesos when we arrive at the Hotel``. He emphatically replied ``Yes I promise you! No Problem!” (his nickname was something like Jenny)

2. Well guess what? No Money! The hotel staff repeatedly told us (come back tomorrow morning), (come back this afternoon), (come back in a few hours), this went on for 4 days with No Money!

3. Also, I asked to buy an internet card & was told for 3 days that they had no cards. Then on the 4th day they said that they had cards but the internet was not working .. I demanded that they sell me one! I told them I would take my chances! Guess what? It worked fine! (what was that about?)

4. Hotel rooms & buildings varied in look & cleanliness big time depending which building you had & which maid you were lucky or unlucky to have!

- Building 15 (no way was built in August of 2013) the one we were in. It was very close to the beach though but very Damp! The maid kept our room clean & was generally nice to us. Although she did make a comment about the lack of tip (can’t really blame her though she did work very well for us!) soo .. we paid her in Canadian as it was not our intention not to tip. All was fine after she realized we were telling her he truth about the hotel not having pesos.
- Building 7 where my sister was sent, was literally in a barren wasteland (it looked like a desert! Just Horrible!)

5. The hotel staff were not very helpful in general unless you were determined enough to return 4 or more times if necessary to get things done! No direction, no maps, no details of where to eat, where to change beach towels, what things they had chosen to close down without warning.

Examples:

- One a la Carte closed,
- Noon-hour Buffet changed to beach location,
- One location for beach towels closed,
- Kiddy center closed for all children.
- Never knew where or when you’ find the Pool or Beach Entertainment

*NOT ORGANIZED AT ALL

- Also there were two young girls who arrived & were sent to Building 9 (also in the desert) by themselves. No Help from staff in the dark! (They recounted to us how frightened they had been to walk to their building in the pitch black of the night!) ..

- Friends of ours also stayed in Building 9 it was nice & clean, but in the desert & it was supposed be on the ocean front but instead was on the side of the building!

- Finally at her Husband’s insistence, my Sister was transferred to building 19. A room in Heaven! Absolutely Beautiful & Clean! What a difference!

6. The little Store-Shop on site at Eurostars Hotel, had a nice variety of things that one might need. But, some of the staff were not very friendly & some were downright rude! There was a black women who worked there who tried to scam you out of your money. Of course her boss screamed at me & said it was a mistake, but she did gave me back my money. OK fine .. but let me explain, .. it was the manner in which she (the black women) returned my change that clued me in! After my purchase she rolled up the bill with the coins & gave it to my husband even though I had paid. Soo, I said to my husband "let me see those coins". Sure enough it was wrong, I showed her & she fixed it without even looking me in the eyes. Then, * Guess what? As we were walking out my husband handed me the rest of my money, at which point I notice the folded paper money was not a 5$ bill but a 3$ bill. I was not happy & went back in to ask for my right change, this is when her boss screamed & yelled at me!

*Now let me ask you, if she made a simple mistake, why would she fold over the number three & roll the change in the bill and give it to my husband when I had paid? The other times I had purchased from them, the staff had handed me unfolded bills while they counted it! Anyway, whatever ... I was vigilante so I got back my right change!

7. “New Years Eve” what a Fiasco .. they ran out of food! How do you run out of food? The management clearly was not prepared for the number of people that showed up! *NOT Very ORGANIZED at all!

- The A La Carte restaurants, OMG Just plain awful! Very little to eat and not cooked properly! We had to eat at the buffet after just to put a bit of food in our stomachs before bed, (but hey on the bright side, I lost 5 lbs ;-)

8. 24 hr restaurant? Not a 24 hour! Closed from roughly 4am to 8:00 am. Also their biscuits (mini breakfast at the lobby bar) Not Served till 9 or 10 am!

- So, if you booked some tours you went on those tours without breakfast! And my family booked 3 tours, so that meant 3 days with No Breakfast! *NOT ORGANIZED AT ALL

9. Our Representative for Caribe Sol, her name was “Yamile” was very hard to reach & was always ½ hour late when she was supposed to be at her post. (Which I might add was 3 week days out 5 days a week for roughly an hour a day!) She was no help at all & would try to sell you a rock if you let her! ... I had told her myself that I did not want to go on any tours as I had lung problems & wanted to rest, yet she booked me anyway. When I confronted her about that, she told me “no problem” I could rest on the bus & train. *Really?

10. *Ok, thank God when I finally got in touch with the Head Office from “Gaviota Tours” they were Amazing Understanding! 100% helpful ! The man that I spoke to let me cancel my day tour with a refund! :-) Nice to know sympathetic, people still exist! :-)

11. Nightly Entertainment Shows were very poor! (lip singing? Come on .. could we see a little bit of Cuban culture please?) This is my 3rd time to Cuba & this Show was the worst!

12. Finally the waiters; .. extremely polite & pleasant to us! .. but, and I’m really sad to say this. We witnessed two of them fighting over us, soo .. we gave them both 3 pesos each a hug & a kiss, and served our selves. Believe me! We Really Do feel bad about their economic plight but , we were 4 of us out 8 people on this vacation that had major health issues & were just there for a rest. This is part of life! Sad, Yes! It just is & no matter how we’d like to help we couldn't.

Soo there you have it .. the overall viewpoint of this trip ...

Room Tip: - Clean Rooms 4 stars (We were 8 people with 4 rooms & were All Pleased) BUT, no ground floor...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Dear guest,
Good afternoon Ms. "angelica_GG",

First of all thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are terribly sorry to read that you had a bad perception of our service. It is a shame that you did not spoke with the Management in site while your were in the hotel to try to solve the problems during your vacation.

We are working hard day by day improving our service to ensure the Eurostars Quality standards, and the guests that are right now in the hotel have seen already the changes.

We hope you give us the opportunity in a near future to see our improvements by yourself.

Yours sincerely,

Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
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Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

I returned from this resort yesterday Jan,18 2014. This is my third time to Cuba, and after visiting Cayo Coco in September, I was really looking forward to it. Unfortunately I was sadly disappointed. Check in was very unorganized and two of the three staff working left when things were not running smoothly, leaving one poor girl to check in everyone. We were told to find our own room in the dark with no directions. our room was cleaned once during our week stay and towels we received twice, but only when asked for. I question if our bed was clean when we got it. I realized over the course of our week that their cleaning practices were almost non existent. Unfortunately being understaffed and undertrained, led to many disappointments by a lot of guests. Line ups are very long for everything! No exaggeration there. You have to line up for anything you want, drinks, food, towels, a la carte reservations, front desk, bank. This was a complaint by everyone, and very frustrating. atleast a half hour for most things. The pools are really nice and the beach was beautiful. If you want a chair at either of these locations be prepared to take your beach towel and leave it on a chair by seven am, or you won't get one. The food was decent, but no more than a three star. It was the same most meals. The bread is amazing here, homemade and always fresh. it was a good filler. Lots to drink, whatever you wanted, and our room fridge always had a couple of beers in it, replaced daily. I would not return to this resort nor would I recommend it. The reviews before mine were truthful and I also heard about the diaper/ garbage scenario when we were there. Gald we did not get sick, sorry for those who did. The area itself is lovely, and I spoke to guests of Melia, and Iberostar who said their resorts were fantastic and service was phenomenol. I would suggest one of those if you want to see this area and the beaches that are beautiful in Cayo Santa Maria! I will be returning to Cayo Coco in September to the Melia Sol Cayo Coco, where I know my family and I will have a great time. Good Luck on your travels!

Room Tip: I stayed in block 15, seaside. good location.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Dear guest,

First of all thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are terribly sorry to read that you had a bad perception of our service. We are working hard day by day improving our service to ensure the Eurostars Quality standards, and the guests that are right now in the hotel have seen already the changes.

We hope you give us the opportunity in a near future to see our improvements by yourself.

Yours sincerely,

Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brampton, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

This was mine and my boyfriend's second trip to Cuba and we decided to take a chance on this place. When we got there we were greeted with drinks and friendly staff. Just keep in mind the bus ride from the airport it over and hour but the tour guide was very entertaining and is more than happy to serve you drinks on the ride.

You need to go to this resort with an open mind. They are fairly new and are working out a lot of kinks but overall we had a wonderful time and we will be returning soon. The resort is modern and beautiful, enjoy it! You won't find a resort this modern unless it's new. The beach was breath-taking and the entertainment staff was very friendly. There are servers for everything! Even if you're laying on the beach servers will come to you and bring you whatever you choose. Go to the beach early and claim a spot, it fills up quickly and if you do not go early, you won't get any shade. The pools are very clean and have a lot of places to tan. Go to the main pool, it is beautiful and has 3 tiers, the top tier overlooking the beach.

The food was delicious. In the main buffet they had a pasta bar, meat station, fish station and a carving station all in which was cooked infront of you with your choice of seasoning. The lunch buffet was more generic but the food was still delicious. I'm not sure what people expect from Cuba but the food is fine, just bring your own seasoning. The snack bar deserves a worthy mention. They actually serve full meals like personal pizzas and pastas. Get there early though because as the day goes on they only serve burgers and fries. The menu says they serve the entire menu till 2am but there's not enough demand so there's no staff to make the pastas and such. Try the shrimp pizza, I wish I had more than 2 during the entire trip.

Be aware that there is a lot of bugs and every night they fog the entire resort with bug repellent. Although my boyfriend and I were fine, other people's ankles beg to differ. Bring bug spray I promise you will not regret it. Also, regardless of where you are going always be prepared and take Dukoral!!!!!! It will prepare you for the change in food and water.

If you plan to do a excursion I highly recommend the catamaran excursion which includes snorkeling, swimming with dolphins and we were taken to an untouched island to discover star fish and other creatures of the sea. Everything was beautiful and included a lobster lunch for 103 dollars. You also get to keep your snorkel after the trip.

The staff was wonderful, our room was always clean and we had no complaints. Give them a chance, the location is beautiful and the people are wonderful.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Dear "green118",

First of all we want to thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are very glad to hear that you are already seeing our improvements, all the staff have worked very hard to satisfy our guests needs and achieve the Eurostars Quality standards.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your next reservation.

Yours sincerely,

Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
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Ottawa
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

This is a very new hotel and it shows.

THE Good: an excellent location with a great beach. Like any resort, the beach palapa sand chaises are reserved early. The pools and surround are excellent. The suites are very nice due to the newness of the property (about 6 months open). The waiters, bar area and servers around the pool were excellent. The beach is absolutely one of the best and beach activities like cat sailing and paddle boats are a hit.

Our maid and mini bar stocker were excellent. It pays to leave them notes, a peso helps. They never missed a request. We see a lot of complaints about this service, probably Europeans that refuse to tip when it is AI. A few pesos and kind notes go a long way...the staff writes you back.

THE bad: food is mediocre at best. However, a notch above other resorts. They run out of stuff and there is little variation in the buffet restaurant. There are some excellent servers in the outside restaurants, unfortunately there are some very bad ones. You can wait a long time...sometimes it never arrives. Booking a specialty restaurant can take two hours if the reservation clerk shows on time, which is rare. Getting pesos is not complicated if you go to the money exchange just after lunch or later in the day. Any bar will give you coins for a bill if you need tip money. The buffet restaurants do not open on time in spite of the times posted. They can be 30 minutes late, with a lot of frustrated customers.

THE ugly: Almost a two hour ride from the airport, however, that is out of their control. Overall management is horrid and the front desk truly terrible. There were only about 20 couples or families in our tour group. The last were given their rooms after three hours. They have no proper system to process incoming guests. The rooms were ready but unable to find the files. Forget going to the front dest for assistance. We were a family so had two rooms and need two cots. They came a day late. One was broken and unusable which was reported and a replacement requested. Six follow up requests bore no fruit, we left six days later without the new cot. One child slept on the floor the whole time. The front desk is in serious need of systems management. They tell you what you want to hear without helping you.

OVERALL: problems at this resort are management related. It has a great location, facilities are excellent. The experience would be so much better if there were sufficient staff (they lack enough personnel, at least at critical times). This resort could be a true five star with effective management. The buffet needs more imagination to reduce the repetitive menus. They should be able to avoid running out of fruit and bread, etc.

Room Tip: When checking in, one person wait for luggage while the other with passports and booking speeds to t...
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  • 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
    • 2 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.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Good afternoon "Mr. madaboutsand"

First of all thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are terribly sorry to read that you had a bad perception of our service. We are working hard day by day improving our service to ensure the Eurostars Quality standards, and the guests that are right now in the hotel have seen already the changes.

We hope you give us the opportunity in a near future to see our improvements by yourself.

Yours sincerely,

Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
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toronto
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2014

This hotel does not care if you are pregnant or are staying at their resort with a baby. We were booked in the last building at the end of the resort on the third floor (no elevators) we had to go up the stairs each time with the stroller. Not very accommodating for someone that is pregnant and has a baby in stroller.

We arrived at 1:00 am and had to wait for so long because there was only one person working at the front desk. No refreshments or car to take us to our room. We had to find our own way in the dark with our suitcases and baby.

We picked this hotel because it is new and we assumed that the bed, linen and towels would be new, but boy were we ever wrong.

PRO:
-Beautiful Beach (just like most places in Cuba)
-Nice pool
-Nice Lobby (but can't enjoy it in the evening because you will get eaten alive by mosquito's, it is a huge problem at this resort)
-Grill Hut by the beach is Fantastic! Thank you Leon for the great service.
- Waiterss at beach restaurant are wonderful
- Helpful and wonderful staff are Osmildo (customer service) and Ricardo (Management)


CONS:
- Majority of staff are not trained and are not helpful at all, especially at reception. Reception staff are very lazy and rude. They don't care if you need help. One staff memeber, by the name Noretis, was very rude and was mocking us in Spanish.

- Linen and towels are disgusting and they do not get cleaned or changed. Our towels were torn with stains all over it. No pillow cases for two days and after we got it with rust stains and blood stains on it. The entire week our bed sheets did not get changed because they did not have any clean ones in stock.

- Bottled water is limited and at some areas on the resort (buffet and bar) they just fill it with tap water and use it. I got one bottle that the seal was broken and it smelled like pool water (almost gave it to my baby).

- Food is HORRIBLE ( I am not kidding I have stayed at other resorts in Cuba and I have never had such disgusting food). It is the same EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. A la Carte is the exact same food as the Buffet so dont waste your time waiting in line to book it. The lobster is like rubber.

I would NOT stay at this resort again, unless they train their Cuban staff better.

Room Tip: "Stay away from Building 7" " Building 11 and 12 are central"
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Good afternoon "Ms. ab_isabel",

First of all thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are working hard day by day improving our service to ensure the Eurostars Quality standards, and the guests that are right now in the hotel have seen already the changes.

We have already made disciplinary actions where it was needed.

We hope you give us the opportunity in a near future to see our improvements by yourself.

Yours sincerely,
Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Swift Current, Canada
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2014

We stayed at the Eurostars, Cayo Santa Maria from Jan. 3- 10 and will not go back. The resort was nice, but that was where it ended. The service was poor and the food was worse. The buffet lacked variety and had the same greasy food 3 times a day. We managed to eat a full plate of food at breakfast with the servers walking past us and not asking if we would like something to drink – not once, but TWICE. There was a few good servers and we tried to look for them and sit in their sections, but they were hard to find. We found out from the tour guide on the bus ride back to the airport that there is banana plantations in Cuba. We didn’t see any fresh fruit except a little bit of watermelon and a not yet ripe pineapple. There wasn’t any fresh vegetables most of the time either. The food was mostly highly processed, cured, canned, pickled or marinated with vinegar. The bread was dry and didn’t get replenished when it ran out. The snack bar there was a joke, the menu is small and dependant on whether there is a chef there to make it. The menu says that pizza is available until 4pm, but the chef leaves at 3pm. The bartenders were overworked and the servers at the bars maybe stopped by once every 3 hours to see if you wanted anything. Standing at the bar for 30 minutes was not unusual before being served. Service on the beach was a much longer wait. In my opinion, as the remaining buildings are completed and the resort fills up the service is going to get worse, because there is only room for a couple of people behind each of the bars. So be prepared to wait for your food, wait for your drinks, and watch your holiday go by standing in line and waiting. At the restaurants (al la cartes included) facial tissue is used as napkins, making it useless to try to use. We booked through Sunwing and had to stand in line for an hour to book our al la carte meals, only to find out that we were only given 2 and had to come back the next day to book the other. Other tour companies were booking up to 4 meals for their clients before they even arrived at the resort. I stood very near the front of the line to find out the al la carte restaurants were nearly all booked up. Getting bottled water to drink was a problem. They leave 1.5L in the mini-bar and will not give you anymore. We packed our water bottles and were usually able to get them filled at the buffet or bar, if we got served and after we waited. I don’t know what they were filling our bottles with. I suspect that it may have been tap water. After being at home for a week, we have both been feeling sick and have no appetite. Our mini-bar wasn’t stocked one day and we had to go to the public relations desk to ask for more. When nothing happened, we went back to ask again and were asked if we were sure that it hadn’t already been filled. When we had problems and complained, it was always someone else’s problem.

The hotel doesn’t have enough towels to replace the ones that they take out of your room. Three times we were left without towels. When we asked the maid for clean towels, she only said that they didn’t have any, but would have some tomorrow. They brought them as late as 9:00 at night, after we complained twice. The staff rides around in golf carts honking their horns so that they can get through on the paths. They very rarely have any guests with them. Most people have to get their bags back and forth from the lobby themselves. I tried to arrange the night before we left to have a cart come get our suitcases in the morning, but of course it never came. There is a bank to exchange money at the resort, but we never saw it open. We had to walk to the next resort to exchange money so that we had money for tips and to purchase souvenirs. We had to walk, since only CUC are accepted by the bus and taxis as well as at the resort gift shop and at the village nearby. The village is just for tourists. It has a few places to eat and some local vendors. It was a nice break from the reality of Eurostars.
Yes, we were ready to go home by the 2nd day and we only got there at 8 the night before.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Sylvain L, Front Office Manager at Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Good afternoon "Myron K",

First of all thank you for choosing us for your vacation.

We are working hard day by day improving our service to ensure the Eurostars Quality standards, and the guests that are right now in the hotel have seen already the changes.

As far as the cleaning in the rooms is concerned, we have one chambermaid per floor, and they clean daily all their rooms (16), and after that a supervisor goes after to check the work.

We hope you give us the opportunity in a near future to see our improvements by yourself.

Yours sincerely,
Ricardo Arencibia
Front Operations Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Eurostars Cayo Santa Maria

Address: Cayos de Villa Clara, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Villa Clara Province > Cayo Santa Maria
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 11 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Number of rooms: 846

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