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“Great beach and very good hotel” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Melia Las Dunas

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Melia Las Dunas
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4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   | Jardines del Rey, Villa Clara, Cuba   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 11 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Irvine, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great beach and very good hotel”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2013

We flew from manchester and stay in this hotel in june and thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The beach is the selling point, where you had quiet areas whereyou could relax but also the option to go out out on the catamaran, peddle boats etc.
We enjoyed our lively welcome after a long flight, and on arrival at the room found it to be clean and tidy. The rooms were basic and dated but were kept clean and fresh towels were provided daily throughout our stay.
We found the majority of staff to be really friendly and couldnt do enough to help. Although, most people were friendly we found a few of the male staff in the lobby to only serve people who were standing will lsrge tips and would often ignore you.Staff who need a particular thank you are Claudia and Yoandy from the lobby bar their hard work and friendlyness helped make our holiday even better and Frank the gardener who greeted me warmly every morning with a flower and some chat was such a pleasant man. These 3 deserve our sincere thankyou and made our trip extra special.

The buffet was good, in particular the pasta stand. We found the a la carte menu to be inconsistent, with the mexican being very poor and the romantic and oriental being good. Specifically weenjoyed the pianist and clarinet player. We were frustrated on two seperate occasions whilst dining in the italian and romantic. On our last night we waited 40 minutes to have our order taken in the romantic. Whilst in the italian, we finished our starter and waited 30 minutes for the waiter to return and clear our plates.

Whilst on holiday here we noticed various couples who got married whilst in the hotel. We found the actual weddings to be beautiful but noticed that wedding guests would appear lost at night. You would think there would be a private area for the wedding quests. We would consider returning for our wedding if there was to be a privatearea organised for wedding guests to celebrate seperate from other guests.

Overall we enjoyed our stay and would return. If considering a wedding package at this hotel we would be looking for a better option for night time.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 31, 2013
Dear Krisandsteph:

Thanks a lot!!!

We are so happy to see that you enjoyed your vacation... many thanks for your good comments...

Will be a pleasure to receive you again...

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Oshawa, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2013

15th trip to cuba. First to cayo santa maria. We only stayed 4 days. It rained a lot but still got great sun too. Food not 5 star, even for cuban standards. Asian restaurant really disappointing. Like a stirfry that went wrong. Cute cats. Loved Archie the orange guy who guarded near 76 bldg. Service was good although we saw a couple of dirty looks from not tipping.I tip because i want to not because its expected. Fly spray needed at night. Pizza good at relax pool.sausage good at buffet breakfast. Paid $388 for 5 nights from Hola Sun. Good deal. No snorkeling. Was stung a few times by jelly fish buy no biggie. Really wonderful beach. Great for families too.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 31, 2013
Dear karenmoshawa:

Many thanks for your comments; I'm sorry you only stayed during 5 days; I believe that with a little bit more maybe you could leave the hotel with better opinion. Anyway, we are so happy to see that you enjoyed your holiday.

I believe that Melia Las Dunas is more than only a good beach, that is only the beginning of a amount of sensations that you can feel in this beautiful place.

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hereford, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

*Closed currency - withdraw cash and take with you then exchange there
*Plugs - Both Sates and Europe fit
*Mosquitoes - Take 100% Deet Repellant!!! Their immune to any less. We have never ever had a problem with mossies but covered in the bites here even with the wristbands & repellant sprays! Take a net for pushchairs
*Towels - are provided in both the room & Pool/Beach, although not always clean
*Departure Tax - 25Peso (about £15) must be paid in Peso's and at the airport when flying back
*Cuba Airport - Arrival Airport, Tiny Refreshment stand selling water, pop & Beer & Departure Airport, 2 small shops selling basic food and souveniers, e.g Rum 5Peso (Very large bottle) Cigerettes 10Peso (pack of 200!)
*Lighters are confiscated flying back from UK so take matches & they will charge you extra tax on any local crafts or paintings brought in Cuba / Havannah!
*Large resort but plenty of Golf Buggys giving lifts
*Water - Too high mineral content to drink from taps but if you take bottles to bars they will fill with 'safer' water for you
*Most people off your flight you will see in your hotel!

Flew from Manchester on a Thomas Cook Flight, premium seats were confortable but couldnt really tell the difference between the standard seats in terms of the room in front of you to the next seat. But was nice to be in a smaller cabin, no queues for toilets, food served first, extra in flight entertainment of films etc, pillows & blankets too.

Arrival at Cuba Airport, you have your picture taken then off to get your luggage. Ours was nearly an hour late! whilst everyone else was on the bus waiting for us!!! Journey to airport doesnt seem that long with all the thngs to look and learn about on the way.

Check in - You have your wristband and rom key / number on the coach, this was brilliat no queues, just straight to your room. What a lovely show they put on for when you get off the coaches!!! They really put out for your arrival.

Suitcases were delivered to the room, but we had to wait nearly 2hours! This wasnt good as we wated to get out ad look around so if you dont want to wait - take your own!

Hotel states its only 7 years old but looks a little tired in some places. Beautiful grounds and pools with lots of choice in where to spend your days! The entertainment staff are fantasic day and night.

The Beach... WOW WOW WOW!!! We are travelled and i thought i was sold on Mexicos beach but this just blew us away!

Lots of weddings everyday, sometimes two a day, only shame is you see the whole wedding party wondering around the bars at night sort of lost with where to go and of course at this time of night its pretty hard for them all to find somewhere discreet enough to accomodate them all. This put me off getting married here.

Trips are fantastic - make sure you check out the excursions!!!!

Shopping - there is a small market on site between blockes 16-17 by the nightclub and bowling which is so cheap and brilliant for souveniers!!! Make sure you have enough shampoo, soaps, suncream etc as everywhere in cuba these were unbelievably expensive!!!

The room was always clean, towel art most days although the towels covered in rust or blood i am unsure of which, most days. Very confortable beds and AC worked wonders! The maid was always fab too. Safe was in working order too and free.

Sadly some let downs...

Thomas Cook Rep - the local lady was very keen for us to keep marking excellent on our questionnaires, so much so she sounded desperate, this ended up being annoying rather than an excellent service & Thomas who joined us on the catemaran trip or the 'Thomas Show' as we liked to call it just ended up getting drunk!!!

Service at the hotel - Unfortunately this was the biggest let down, uless you were Spanish or holding a wad of cash in our hand then expect to stand at the bar, in fact any queue, for at least half hour! This was so shocking the service all english people received! I believe in tipping everywhere but I strongly also believ you tip FOR good service, NOT to get served.
Although we spoke to the geneal manager about this, he did agree with us and promised he would take our comments on board and have a chance to make this up to us - we heard nothing again from him and service continued as normal. which was a shame as he seemed a nice guy who seemed genuinly interested in our comments.

Most staff do play on the fact they have no money, and this sounds awful and i dont mean to come across that way AT ALL. If you offer them clothes (when they tell you they cant afford any) They just want the cash. They are keen for your clothes too but they then sell them on stalls so please be careful.

Money Exchange - Please check! We were lucky we did after he counted it out so quickly to us we were prety lost! I double checked it and he owed us some more!!! lucky we didnt leave.

Food & Drink - Unfortunaley this was a let down, Cuba is known for its lack of food and dont get me wrong, With what they have was always cooked well. Thee just wasnt a huge selection. They know how to cook with what the have, especially meat!!! So tender and delicious & Spagheti cooked for you. Pizza parlour was always good although the guy that works there, need some extra help! Desserts was mainly cake based and a different texture to what were used to but still enjoyable.

The beer garden - This has corona & heiniken... But NOT if your english think again! they are hidden for the spanish and on occasion you would get one they would suddenly run out. Service here by a few was sometimes poor, you felt a pain for asking for a drink.

Our transfer coach broke down on the way to the airport so we checked in late... Making us one of the last t check in meant we did ot sit together. As it is a long flight id recommend paying to book your seats together.

Overall we enjoyed our holiday after a few days of knowing what to expect, I would recommend the hotel to people who arent that fussy eating, who dont mind waiting to get served and are generally laid back about the service front.

And most of all who want the an amazing beach!!!!! All watersports are free here too hobby cats, peddlows etc.

We met some AMAZING FRIENDS and got to experince some beautiful places in Cuba, we will definately be back, just to a better hotel.

Any questions, feel free to ask! :)

Room Tip: block 29 close to everything
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 31, 2013
Dear PeaLea4:

Many thanks for your comments; I will check every point of your review in order to clarify all topics you’re referring us.

I'm very surprised to see your comments taking into account that we are receiving a lot of good reviews from British clients so your opinion will be a priority to us.

We really take care of your comments and we are pushing so hard to try to eradicate all bad behaviors of our staff, so our interview was a very good help to us.

Best regards,
Alberto Jerez
General Manager
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Miami, Florida
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

Nice hotel. Need some upgrades, but the staff really work. The hotel director was very accessible, but the award goes to Juan, the A&B director. This guy is an example of a hardworking man.
The lobby bar was awesome and at night it get really live.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 31, 2013
Dear omarlaffita:

Many thanks for your comments and support... will be a pleasure to receive you again.

I will also extend all your comments to Mr Juan, our food and berverage manager...

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bath
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

We booked our trip through Thomas cook.
On arrival there were dancers drinks and a red carpet! Lovely start to our trip. I enquired before travelling about upgrading our rooms thomas cook only offered standard rooms. Therefore on arrival we had to pay the difference and our bags were taken to our room for us. We were ideally located in the adult section, close to the beach pool and restaurants. Only problem with our room was the air con was not working correctly, an engineer was sent out, but was no better. We went to reception again to complain, and we were offered 2 rooms to choose from. The air con worked fab then in this room, only issue we had with this room, is during the early hours of the morning, our ceiling started to leak, from the heavy rain. We phoned reception up, and it didn't leak the rest of the trip. Apart form the issues, the rooms were big, they were decorated within the theme they were always clean, and our cleaner often left us flowers and towel animals,
As we did not have any children, we spent our days at the adult pool. Swim up bar was lovely.loads of loungers, and the area was always clean. Often there was a cleaner outside the toilets, to go in after you to ensure the floors stayed clean and dry.
The beech by far was the selling point when we booked the hotel, and it was well worth it. The beach and sea are stunning!!!!! Just gets very hot down there.
Food. . . . Where do I start! It was plentiful. At the buffet you have the option of pre made dishes, or fleshly cooked dishes which included a range of meat, fish, pasta, rice, omelettes. All cooked to order in front of you. All the food was of good quality (beef steaks were a bit chewy, but considering that the Cubans are not allowed beef, it's hardly surprising the beef steak isn't the best). Al a catre restaurants. . . Fantastic food and service, except for the Mexican. Would recommend all the others, our favourite was the oriental (the best service we received throughout our stay- cant remember the girls name but she worked on the right hand side of the restaurant) and romantica.
Entertainment. . . . Mainly dancing but that's ok. Beech party was awesome!!!!
Drinks. . . Get very busy, and the staff work very hard. Branded drinks are available as part of the all in package, just ask at the bar, as they are not listed in the drinks list, but are included!!! International bottled beer also a nice touch.
Spa. . . They had a special offer for a 25min all over massage (and I mean all over) was 30pesos. It was great and so relaxing!!
Overall fantastic
We went fishing and on a speed boat and snorkelling trip. Well recommended!!

JUST NOTE: flying back they ask for your paperwork to see what you luggage allowance is. Leaving Manchester we were over, and allowed to take it on, coming back however they wanted to charge us. They also weighed your hand luggage!! So there is no way of getting away with heavy bags. So pack carefully!!

All in all a fantastic trip and we met a lot of great people . . . Thanks guys

Room Tip: As other reviews say, just email your requests prior to going. 2nd floor in adults section is great...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 26, 2013
Dear Haiki 189:

Thanks a lot!!!

We are so happy to see that you enjoyed your vacation... many thanks for your good comments...

Will be a pleasure to receive you again...

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, ON
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

My wife and I have been to Melia Las Dunas in Cuba many times.
This resort is everything you could possibly want for a vacation.
The resort is very clean, the food is excellent and the staff will go out of their way
to welcome you and make your vacation a pleasurble stay.
The beer garden is a unique addition where unlimited premium beer is available 24/7.
The buffet is just perfect.Plus many A La Carte restourants (Italian,Oriental, Romantico
Mexican And many more).
Las Dunas resort has something for everyone,wether your desire is sports or simply to relax by the beautiful beach or pool.
We would certainly go back in a heartbeat.
Our home away from home.
Job well done Mr. Alberto Jarez and Mr. Yudiel Manejias Torres.

Danny. B.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 26, 2013
Dear DannyBak:

It was a great pleasure to receive you and will be a pleasure to repeat the ocassion...

Manny thanks for your comments... do not hesitate to contact us if you decide to come back...

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We stayed at the Melia Las Dunas from June 11, 2013 - June 18, 2013 with a group of 31 people (ages 8 months and up). We chose this hotel particularly for the price and beach. We were celebrating our 10 year wedding anniversary with our closest family and friends and had our vow renewal ceremony on the 14th of June. The wedding coordinator had met us when we arrived, however had to hand over the details and organization to her supervisor, Yudith, as she was leaving on holidays. Yudith was amazing to deal with and super friendly! We had a perfect ceremony day, couldn't have planned it better ourselves! The evening we had decided to plan a private dinner off the resort and had a double decker bus pick us up and transport the group over. The food was lobster and surf and turf - GREAT food! The DJ and waitresses were great and super friendly, energetic and partied with our group! LOVED IT! Would definitely recommend this to anyone planning a ceremony here.

Overall review of the amenities and food is as follows:

Food isn't fabulous by any means, but there is plenty to choose from and you will definitely not go hungry. Cuba unfortunately is not known to have the best of foods anyways.........

Beach was stunning! The best I've seen in Cuba - we've travelled previously to Varadero and Cayo Coco. Water was gorgeous, sand was powder perfect. Only 1 day of jelly fish, but it was amazing nonetheless!

Rooms - we stayed in building 29 (ocean view room). It was clean and spacious for the most part - only complaint was that the floors could have been mopped better, but the sheets, towels, bathrooms, everything was good otherwise. My mom stayed in the adjoining room to ours and her maid, Baby, was fabulous! Cleaned everything top to bottom spotlessly!

Kids club workers are great! So enthusiastic and welcoming it was lovely.

Entertainment was great too - Gisela (also part of the kids club) was fabulous and more than friendly.

Pool bar - OK, nothing special, Lazaro in particular could have been friendlier and more social, wasn't a big fan of his. Found him rude and often ignored people and was VERY SLOW!

Al la carte restaurants - Italian was ok, Romantico was better and the Oriental was bar far MY FAV! Everyone in our group agreed.

Mosquitos were crazy there, but it seems as though they weren't the only bugs biting. We knew this beforehand so brough a LOT OF OFF spray. If you plan on sitting on your balcony, maybe bring with you the citronella candles/rings to burn. Just be cautious as you are close to plants and trees so never leave them unattended!

Overall trip was great and was better than we had expected.

Room Tip: Rooms in the 29th building are a great choice!
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alberto J, Director General at Melia Las Dunas, responded to this review, July 31, 2013
Dear Debbienovosel:

Many thanks for your comments and support...

Certainly, weddings and votes renewals are a priority to us in Melia Las Dunas, by far we are the hotel with more of this celebration in all Cuba, so you can believe that we have a lot of experience dealing with these ceremonies.

Many thanks again for your good comments regarding our costumer service dept. I will extend you words to them.

Best regards,

Alberto Jerez
General 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 Melia Las Dunas

Address: | Jardines del Rey, Villa Clara, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Villa Clara Province > Cayo Santa Maria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
#4 Romantic Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Melia Las Dunas 4.5*
Number of rooms: 925
Also Known As:
Melia Las Dunas Hotel Cayo Santa Maria
Melia Cayo Santa Maria
Melia Hotel Las Dunas
Melia Las Dunas Cuba

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