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Barcelo Solymar

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Traveler (9829)
Pool & Beach (2089)
Room & Suite (1864)

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About

#22 of 30 all-inclusives in Varadero
Location
4.4
Cleanliness
3.5
Service
3.5
Value
3.5
The hotel Barceló Solymar stands right on the sea front of the top spot of Varadero beach, Cuba’s best-known tourist destination. With a privileged setting, it’s the perfect place to combine rest and relaxation with a wide array of exciting activities. At a short distance from downtown Varadero.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Paid internet
Pool
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room
Free breakfast
Beach
Tennis court
Babysitting
Parking
Internet
Pool / beach towels
Outdoor pool
Bar / lounge
Restaurant
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Snack bar
Poolside bar
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Kids club
Concierge
Currency exchange
Shops
Sun loungers / beach chairs
Dry cleaning
Laundry service
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Room features
Air conditioning
Housekeeping
Private balcony
Safe
Minibar
Refrigerator
Flatscreen TV
Room types
Ocean view
Non-smoking rooms
Suites
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
4.0 of 5 stars
HOTEL STYLE
Great View
Languages Spoken
French, Spanish
3.5
3.5 of 5 bubbles8,816 reviews
Reviews Summary
This summary was created by AI, based on recent reviews.
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Barcelo Solymar enjoys a prime location that many guests appreciate, offering convenient access to local attractions and the beach. The cleanliness of the rooms generally garners praise, thanks to the diligent housekeeping staff, although there have been sporadic issues with toiletries and towels. While the vibrant atmosphere and energetic entertainment are highlights for numerous travelers, opinions on the amenities and room conditions are divided. Some guests celebrate the friendly staff and excellent service, but others have faced disappointments, feeling the value does not always match the cost.
Location
Convenient
Atmosphere
Lively
Rooms
Uncomfortable
Value
Mixed
Cleanliness
Mixed
Service
Inconsistent
Amenities
Underwhelming
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Roderick v wrote a review Feb 2024
Haarlem, The Netherlands24 contributions
Things that are good at the hotel: -Friendly waiters and (bar)personnel. In the restaurants they really try their best. Other than reception, the staff really wants you to feel welcome -Gorgeous quiet beach, plenty of pools options, lots of sunbeds -Clean rooms, spacious and very light as well -More buffet options, VERY LITTLE vegetarian food and they had NO separate cutlery to serve food so a lot of cross contamination Poor: -Limited drink choice -Very greasy food, little healthy food -Our friends had leakages in their room with a lot of water coming through the ceiling -Loud music at the pool and during the night -Reception is not helpful at all. -Many problems with keys and being locked out several times -Some areas had reasonable connections with WiFi and some areas had no connection at all.
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Date of stay: February 2024
Value
Location
Service
Trip type: Traveled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Emily B wrote a review Feb 2024
1 contribution
+1
A few weeks late writing this review but here we go. (Very long but I hope you stick with me.) It was my first time in Cuba (3rd time for my husband, but he didn't remember mu h because he was a single groomsman all those times) , and my experience already has me planning our next getaway to Cuba. The ride from the airport to Barcelo Solymar was fairly quick and very entertaining. Our bus leader was actually a tourism student and he did a great job of welcoming everyone and giving us some history of Varadero enroute to the resort. The beer for sale (cheap price) on the bus was a nice touch. Upon arrival, we easily received our card keys and directions to our room. We ended up with a very spacious pool/ocean view room despite us having paid for a standard room. The room was huge, and my husband and I both loved that the toilet+bath and sink+dressing area was separate. *We brought folding travel hangers and very glad we did. Hangers come with the room but were not the style that enabled hanging up of dresses/tops with spaghetti straps. So bring extra hangers if you like to hang your dresses.* We arrived late at night, so the restaurants were closed...but we were directed to a late night snack bar where the beer was flowing freely and the snacks available were mixed salad and grilled ham paninis. This was at the neighbouring/shared resort, Arenas Blancas. We then discovered ourselves that Barcelo Solymar also has a late night snack bar with beer that is located in the Italian restaurant from 11pm-5am. They had draught beer, and a coleslaw with hotdogs and/or ham roll sandwiches. Food was actually really great in the buffets, always lots of choices. There was always chicken, pork, often beef, and sometimes fish. The soups are particularly fantastic...to the point where we were taking our Bubbas in around 930pm and filling them with soup for late night cravings and also to stave off potential hangovers the next morning. And the cheese, while not appearing often, was some sort of sorcery: a spreadable delight thst looked like lumpy mashed potatoes but tasted like a sharp, somewhat grainy, food of the gods. Booking the a la cartes is a test in patience. You need to arrive and line up by 8 am if you want any chance. The old ladies from Quebec are particularily rude and will pretend they don't understand English when you tell them not to butt in line. Super fun turning around and saying in French to go to the back of the line, and then they get offended that you call them out on their sh*t. The vacationing old ladies are the worst-mannered ingrates I have ever encountered, multiple groups acting like bullies, especially to staff. Give'em hell. Anyhow, the best a la cartes we tried were the Spanish restaurant (the wine is really nice, as is the garlic soup) and then the Cuban restaurant, Rancho Caribe. Mario at the Cuban restaurant treated us like family and kept trying to feed us more than we ordered. He reminded me of my grandmothers, and just kept bringing food! We talked of our families and he showed us photos of his kids. The Chef even came out to say hello and made sure we had enough to eat (!so much!). I miss Chef's ropa vieja already. The Mexican restaurant was good, in fact their quesadilla appetizer was better than any quesadilla we'd had at Dreams Riviera IN MEXICO the year before. It was perfectly cooked, the tortilla just melt-in-mouth heaven. I could have eaten just a platter of those and been happy. The fish is beautiful, with a super light breading and gorgeous tomato-based sauce. My husband's beef fajita was a bit dry and small but other than that, everything was awesome. The blue daquiri definitely packs a punch and tasted like an electric lemonade. All in all, food-wise, there really is something for everyone (unless you are the kind of person who lives off of fries, chicken nuggets, and fast food). If you are really craving pizza and tacos, Dino's Pizza just off resort is crazy good at a decent price. We ate there between meals a few times. And the taco place in the tourist village across from Arenas Blancas is equally fantastic, with big portions for what you pay. La Fondue was meh, and we definitely felt overcharged after our meal and still hungry...but they make a mean frozen daquiri (which you will not find on-resort. No frozen drinks). If you want something really special, take a retro car to Casa de All on the other side of town for a seaside lobster dinner with live music. Excellent quality food, great service, huge tails. Make sure you wear DEET though as the mosquitoes can be brutal if dining al fresco. We got ripped off by the 1920s gangster-style car taking us there, but the driver on the way back drove a gorgeous convertible car called "Barbie" and he was just amazing. Great price, unforgettable car, plus he had good suggestions of things to do and the best nightclubs to hit in Varadero. We asked for his name and number so we could use him again for future rides. Call Leniel at 50619371. Ok, rambling. Sorry. Back to the resort. The lobby is gorgeous. The vines are magical. There is tonnnns of seating, so bring some travel board games with you, park your butt, grab a drink, and enjoy. The elevators don't always work. But the glass elevator is a nice way to take in the view. The Daquiri lobby bar in Barcelo Solymar is really good. They have a daily virgin self-serve cocktail that you can add alcohol to if you like. I lived for their espresso and you can have it to stay or "para llevar" (to go). All the bars both at Solymar and Arenas Blancas have shortages everyday but hey, it's Cuba. There's no vodka or tequila but the rum and Black Head whisky are great. Beer type (Cristal, Presidente, and others) changes day to day, which is fun if you're not picky. If you are picky, just walk into town and buy your own tequila, wine, vodka, beer, liqueurs, etc., at a store. The resort stores also have some different bottles for sale of you are feeling lazy. Drink mixes vary day-to-day. You will not find diet soda even in town. Some days, there is punch, some days it is just cola or fanta. Sometimes there are piña coladas while at other times, just mojitos. Roll with it. We did not spend any time in the pools so I can't say much for them except they occasionally had a foam party in the pool at Barcelo mid-afternoons. Bingo is pretty fun, the music can be good, but not a whole lot of activities going on tbh. The activities schedule was more like a guideline, not always tangible. The beach, holy jayzus, the beach... Heaven. We spent a lot of our time there. Powder-soft sand, white like sugar. Water is clear and crazy shades of blue and turquoise. No Insta filters needed. Tons of loungers, but the shade palapas are usually occupied until around 3-4pm unless you get there early. You can walk in either direction for miles, no water shoes needed. Do beware there are blue jellyfish that wash up after storms (we got hit with 3 big storms while down there) and the waves get rough for a couple days after a storm, which means no swimming nor water sports are allowed. Other than that, the water is serene, safe, and shallow. We saw some guys actually walking down the beach with a sack of fish that they got by spearfishing offshore. So I am sure you could snorkel offshore if that's your jam. The sunsets are absolutely incredible and very romantic, especially if you take in the view from a white "porch-style" swing near the wedding gazebo. Just mind-blowingly beautiful, it might make you cry. The staff are very friendly, always happy to help and ready with a smile. Don't forget to tip these folks as they work really hard to make sure you have a great vacation. They don't seem to expect a tip but they definitely voice their appreciation when you do tip. Workers are slowly renovating the hotel bit by bit (e.g. rebuilding a beach shower, renovating rooms, fixing older pathways) but nothing interrupted our leisure. No noise or service disruptions. The gardens are well-kept and gorgeous, with loads of tropical flowers, huge cacti, and towering aloes and palms that made me feel like I was in "Jurassic Park". By staying at Barcelo Solymar, because you get to share amenities with Arenas Blancas, you get the choice out of 2 nightly shows. The dancers are really talented. The MCs try their best to speak in multiple languages to get the crowd involved. The kids' pre-shows are hilarious + adorable, and worth watching while awaiting the main shows. We really loved the show where the MC brought up a few couples and had them do a series of comical tasks in order to win a bottle of rum. I honestly think that our sole complaint was that all entertainment ended after the nightly show. We thought there was an on-site disco when we booked but nada. No music was played after the show, and everyone but maybe some guests with bluetooth speakers blasting their own tunes at the Arenas Blancas late night snack bar, everyone else either went to bed or went into town to party. It would have been nice to have a party option at the resort. Yeah, the Beatles Bar band was wicked awesome (um, "Bulls on Parade", "Rooster", and "Smells Like Teen Spirit" performed by a capable band in what felt like someone's bush party backyard but with rum punch? Yes please.) and there were a few actual nightclubs nearby (Havana Club and La Comparcita in walking distance; La Casa de Musica a drive across town) but hell I'm old and just want to stumble safely from dancing the Macarena to my bed, staying on resort. So yeah. Other than that, Barcelo Solymar is a solid resort, perfect if you like exploring the town (we even walked medical supplies to the nearby church of St. Elvira via the nfp Not Just Tourists, and got invited to attend Sunday Mass...which we did), the local reataurants if you get somehow bored of resort food (Coco Mar makes killer cocktails and food on the beach), nightclubs if you like partying off-resort, and enjoying the huge sttetch of beach. Plus if you like going on excursions, you get picked up almost last for Havana (hello, sleeping in) and get home almost first vs. staying at resorts further down the penninsula. *Havana tour with the nightly cannon show at the fort is spectacular but a very long day, so drop off matters.* And definitely do the Catamaran tour to Cayo Blanco. We got to snorkel over a shipwreck, then had a lobster+buffet lunch on what felt like a deserted slice of paradise. Lastly, pack those little purse-sized packages of facial tissue with you wherever you go. On excursions, or even walking around Varadero...you will need them. Most public washrooms did not have toilet paper (bring hand sani, too, because no soap some places) and also bring pesos because you have to tip to use public off-resort washrooms. On resort, unfortunately I encountered the same-same-but-different old Quebecois "ladies" stealing the rolls of toilet paper from public areas and shamelessly leaving none for the next in line. Tabarnak.
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Date of stay: February 2024
Value
Location
Service
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: * bring DEET. Mosquitoes and biting sand fleas can be bad after it rains. * bring travel tissue...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
2 Helpful votes
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 days ago
We sincerely appreciate your kind words and the time you have taken to share your experience at Barceló Solymar. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed our wide variety of dining options, the staff's attention, the beautiful beach, and the activities both within the resort and in the surrounding area. We are especially glad to hear that you highlighted the friendliness and professionalism of our team, as well as the quality of our nightly shows. Additionally, we appreciate your recommendations for local excursions and nearby restaurants. We take note of your suggestions for improving the nightlife offerings at the resort, and we will work towards providing an even more complete experience for our guests in future stays. We look forward to welcoming you back to Barceló Solymar to continue providing you with unforgettable vacations. Thank you for choosing us!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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elizabeth T wrote a review Feb 2024
30 contributions
We went here on vacation with my family, having been to cuba many times this place does not compare to any of the 4 and 5 star resorts we have stayed at. Upon arrival the elevators were out and the put my parents on the top floor, with no one to carrier their bags. The floor they were on had burnt out lights missing ceiling tiles all the way to their room near the end of the hall, felt like a horror movie. The following morning we asked to be moved as the elevators were still out and my mom was only able to do the stairs once a day. The told is it would cost $400 more a couple, even though we had already paid extra to stay in am ocean view. We said we would talk to our agent and let them know. We than decided while we waited for our agent we would go down to the beach so asked at front desk where we would get beach towels, they told us someone will put them in our room later. After speaking with our agent she said this was a better option as it would cost around $800 a couple to move to another resort. So we went back and the front desk had given all the rooms away and said to come back in the morning. Still no beach towels. Following day no rooms available, but we finally got beach towels. Day 4 got a new room, but we're told to leave our beach towels in the old room amd we would get more. Went to the room my husband took a shower which leaked all over the bathroom floor. No bath Matt's provided, so he used his towel to wipe it up so that we did not slip on it. Day 5 sti have not received new beach towels and no new towel for my husband, he ended up having to use his sweater as a towel. Day 6 finally got beach towels and my husband got a new towel. Went down to the beach, not enough chairs to accommodate the two resorts so Went to sit.around the pool. This was the worst experience I have had in cuba. Further I have never used air transat for an all inclusive and will never use them again, I'll be sticking with sunwing as the reps did nothing to help our situation.
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Date of stay: January 2024
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Trip type: Traveled with family
Room Tip: Go somewhere else.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
1 Helpful vote
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Response from Joan Marqués, General Manager at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 6 days ago
We are very sorry to read your negative review of our resort. It seems that you had a series of inconveniences during your stay that affected your satisfaction and comfort. We want to apologize for all the problems you experienced with the rooms, the elevators, the towels, the beach chairs and the customer service. These are not the quality standards that we strive to offer to our guests and we understand your frustration and disappointment. We appreciate that you have sent us your comments, as they allow us to identify the areas of improvement and take the necessary corrective actions. We assure you that we have shared your opinion with the departments involved and that we are working to solve the deficiencies that you mention. We hope that, despite these inconveniences, you have been able to enjoy the beauty of Cuba and its beaches.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Millicent F wrote a review Feb 2024
4 contributions
"All inclusive," but there was no rum in the whole place! And no cheese. They served draft beer in 4 oz wine glasses, which was very inconvenient since they could be drunk in two sips. The whole place kind of looked under-maintained; for example, the outside door to our building (contained two rooms) was broken and would not lock. The plumbing fixtures were wiggly with splotchy chrome. I'll have to say the 5-story long curtains of pothos vines in the lobby were pretty impressive. Overall there was a strange Russian vibe to whole place, with the 80s disco music playing loudly through cheap speakers at the pool area to the strange food offerings. Like they were trying to mimic Disney World and didn't quite know how to do it.
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Date of stay: February 2024Trip type: Traveled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, General Manager at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 6 days ago
We are sorry to hear that you were disappointed with your stay at our hotel. We appreciate your feedback and we take it very seriously. We apologize for the lack of rum and cheese, the small glasses, the broken door, and the plumbing issues. We are working hard to improve our facilities and services to meet our guests’ expectations. We are glad that you liked the pothos vines in the lobby, but we regret that you did not enjoy the music and the food. We are not trying to mimic Disney World, but we are trying to create a fun and relaxing atmosphere for our guests. We hope you will give us another chance to show you our true hospitality and quality. Thank you for choosing us and for sharing your honest opinion.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Maureen M wrote a review Feb 2024
71 contributions
Just returned from 9 days at the Barcelo Solymar. This is my third time here over the last 6 years . I’ve been here pre Covid and as other reviews state things are definitely different. I have friends who travel to Cuba several times a year so we went here knowing things have changed. What I like about this hotel is the proximity to town.. easy walk or cococab ride.. typical tourist shops with some restaurants . The beach is fantastic with lots of chairs and umbrellas but get there early as it does get crowded. The price point is great value especially since all the hotels, even the 5 stars are having issues with supply. We brought some condiments, beach towels , gifts for staff.. bring things like spices , toothpaste, cosmetics, candy, dry goods, coffee creamer , snacks , medicine. So appreciated by all. Supply is a big problem as they’re biggest support (Russia) is at war and things are hard to get for the Cuban people. Bring your own vodka as they didn’t have any, plenty of rum , beer was flowing but they did run out of coke one day. Food variety at the buffets was lacking but there was always pork, beans and rice … which I love but does get tiresome after 9 days … and the Cuba day festivities they put on once a week had a roasted pig with typical Cuban sides and mojitos was lots of fun. They always had eggs in the morning but no bacon , nbd. Fruit was limited to pineapple, papaya and guava . The rooms are adequate ( we had Superior bungalow, which aren’t really bungalows but two story buildings away from high rise part of hotel) never had a problem with hot water , mini fridge will only have 2 bottles of water daily. You also have access to the Arena Blanca next door and we liked their buffet for a change of pace , same food but a quieter environment than large buffet area at Barcelo. What hasn’t changed are the staff and people of Cuba ! All of the staff were fantastic! From the front desk staff, the pool people , gardeners, maids and bartenders ( big shout out to Lala and Pocholo at the pool bar ) . They’ll do their best to accommodate and are working as hard as they can . We had 3 issues that were dealt with immediately.. safe didn’t work , within 5 minutes it was dealt with. The fridge was leaking, just needed defrosted.. dealt with in 5 minutes .. the wifi is a challenge sometimes only works in lobby area . Get off your cell phone and enjoy your time .
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Date of stay: February 2024
Value
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Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, General Manager at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 6 days ago
Thank you for your kind review of our hotel. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us and appreciated our location, beach, and staff. We are also grateful for your understanding of the challenges we face due to the current situation in Cuba and the world. We always try to provide the best service and quality to our guests, despite the difficulties. We apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced with the safe, the fridge, and the wifi. We are happy to know that our staff was able to resolve them quickly. We hope to welcome you back soon for another memorable vacation at Barceló Solymar. Thank you for choosing us and for sharing your experience with other travelers.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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RUBY L wrote a review Feb 2024
Kamloops, Canada6 contributions
Resort is nice. Pools and beach are great. Room okay, did not supply mini bar or coffee pot as indicated. No hot water for showers only warm. Food was good but selection was limited. Alacartes were good, but some menu items mot availablle. We especially liked the Cuban restaurants and the staff service their including Mavvio, Delianis. And Andyeis. The discounted price reflected the food and service we received. Coffee in lobby bar was good, but often not hot. All staff were pleasant and friendly and quick to serve.
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Date of stay: February 2024
Value
Location
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Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: Expect less food options, and older rooms.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 weeks ago
Thank you for sharing your experience at our hotel. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed the pools, the beach, the food and the service of our staff. We appreciate your feedback on the mini bar, the coffee maker, the hot water, the variety of food and the temperature of the coffee. We will take note of your suggestions to improve our quality and guest satisfaction. We hope you will visit us again soon and we will offer you a better stay. Best regards.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Traveler448106 wrote a review Feb 2024
Toronto, Canada1 contribution
There is not enough space to express the most amazing trip of our life. The hotel is old… that’s okay, so am I. The food was plentiful and OK, always eggs, fresh bread, coffee, rum, pop. Sorry no fries or burgers…. It’s not Canada. No vodka, not the Cubans problem. They give what they can get. The people are amazing. We brought home $400 Canadian coins… STOP BRINGING THEM. We exchanged $200 American, please only bring good paper money. Their banks will not accept Canadian coins or bills that are torn, written on or annihilated. The people of the resort give give give and do their best with what they have. They do not have Amazon. The Cuban people make between $20 and $30 per MONTH and the government gives them very little in food. The Cubans are treated like garbage by their government. Please remember this. Remember, you are travelling to a Third World country. The things that we take for granted, they don’t even have the option to buy. I saw the manager and the owner of the resort multiple times. They are trying. To the people that touched our hearts ❤️. Ayleen, a woman, a friend, that brought us to her home and family and cooked for us, Jorge the beach bartender that ran everywhere to serve, Jorge the lifeguard that kept us safe from the waves, Ana, Yanetsy, Daimarys, Feijou our mechanic, Daniel customer service, Yadira our house maid, Marcus the owner, Yoel, and to ALL the other Cuban people that made our 10 days the most memorable time. We will be back as soon as possible.
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Location
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Trip type: Traveled with family
Room Tip: Bring toilet paper, theirs is very thin and always carry some with you. Bring your love and...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
1 Helpful vote
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 weeks ago
Thank you for taking the time to share your amazing experience with us. We are thrilled to hear that your trip was one of the most memorable times of your life. While we understand that our hotel may be older, we appreciate your understanding and acceptance. It is heartwarming to know that you found the food plentiful and satisfactory, and enjoyed the availability of eggs, fresh bread, coffee, rum, and other beverages. We wholeheartedly agree with you about the Cuban people being truly incredible. Their warmth, generosity, and resilience are unparalleled. We greatly appreciate your recognition of their hard work in providing exceptional service despite limited resources. Your appreciation for their efforts reinforces our belief in the importance of supporting local communities during travel experiences. The difficulties faced by Cubans highlight the significance of gratitude and empathy towards others who do not have access to basic necessities or conveniences we often take for granted. We will make sure to convey your kind words to Ayleen, Jorge (bartender), Jorge (the lifeguard), Ana, Yanetsy, Daimarys, Feijóo, Daniel, Yadira, Marcus, Yoel, and all other staff members who made a positive impact on your stay. We cannot wait to welcome you back as soon as possible so that together we can continue creating cherished memories for years to come.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Wayne M wrote a review Feb 2024
1 contribution
OK so this was our first time to Cuba, and we had a lot of concerns. I will start of by saying for the most part our trip was awesome. Yes the resort is run down and in need of a LOT of repairs. Safe did not work, no coffee maker in the room, water leaking from the bathroom ceiling when it rained (probably a storm drain) and yes your in the tropics so yes they have cockroaches, not a million of them but we saw 1 in our room and the odd one here and there throughout the trip. Your down south, its to be expected. The food was nothing special but we knew that. Solymar had plenty of food and we were never hungry. They would run out of certain types of alcohol from time to time but there was always something. LALA at the pool bar is awesome unfortunately her hard work for us got ruined on the way home but more on that in a minute. NOW onto the @#%% show trip home! My wife and I collect a jar of sand from every beach go to and bring it home a put it in either a novelty jar or an empty alcohol bottle from the area as a keep sake of being there. This is where LALA comes in. LALA took the time to find us the fanciest bottle she could find and hold it for us until she saw us again. HOWEVER, for what ever reason, Cuban customs took them and said we cant take them on the plane but we can go to duty free and buy 2 full ones and take those. They let the water bottle full of sand through though. So bottles gone so i do in fact go buy 2 more bottles from duty free in Cuba. WetsJet was delayed so we end up getting off the ground almost 40 minutes late. We have a connector in Toronto the we are going to have about 15 minutes to get to. So of the plane in Toronto and the mad dash begins through customs, declare everything A OK. but now we have to go through security again in Toronto to get on out connector back to Ottawa. Well the flag out bag with the duty free bottles of rum, they proceed to OPEN the duty free bag and tell us we are only allowed 100ml bottles on the plane and that our duty free bag was not sealed (THEY JUST OPENED THEM IN FRONT OF US) so they confiscate the 2 bottles and tell us we can go check in another bag and put them in there if we want. (PROBLEM! they are about to shut the gates for our flight, there is no time to run back and check another bag or we miss our flight) Then oh you can have this sand either because its more than 100ml. (ITS SAND NOT LIQUID) This happened to SEVERAL other people catching the connector with us. they had their duty free bags opened and confiscated including their allowed limit of rum and all the cigars they brought back. So of course we have no choice as we are about to miss our flight we all have to say just keep it we have to go. Arrive in Ottawa, Hey Guess what! Ours along with 4 other travelers, checked bags are not there. So now all our personal items like my wife's cosmetics, straightening iron brushes, our vapes and ALL the other items we got in Cuba are gone too. At this point we Have 1 shirt and a hat to remember the trip with, and nice probably going to be about $500 in personal items that we need to replace unless by some miracle Westjet finds our bags. In Short Probably never doing Cuba again, NEVER going to do connecting flights again, its non stop or nothing, Hotel is just to sleep, if you don't care about cleanliness its a yes, if your picky then its not for you, food is what you expect from cuba, The worst part of the trip is the VERY UNORGANIZED air lines and the VERY messed up customs in CANADA. Canada customs is BROKEN.
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Date of stay: February 2024
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Location
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Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 weeks ago
We deeply regret hearing about the difficulties you experienced during your return trip and the loss of your personal belongings. We would like to offer our sincerest apologies for any inconvenience caused. We would like to emphasize that, while we understand your frustration with issues related to the customs process in Canada and the airline, these matters are beyond our direct control as a hotel. We appreciate your feedback on our property and will take note of the areas you mentioned in order to continue improving our services and facilities. It saddens us to hear that these external circumstances negatively affected your overall perception of your trip to Cuba. As we always strive to provide a positive experience for our guests within the hotel, we would like to remind you that we are here to assist and will do everything possible to ensure an enjoyable stay while you are on our premises. Once again, we apologize for any inconvenience caused and hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back in the future to demonstrate our commitment towards your complete satisfaction.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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dvr77 wrote a review Feb 2024
Toronto, Canada12 contributions
Resort itself is nice for Cuba. Great beach, but it ends there. Food was poor, even for Cuba . Steam tables were not working, so food was always cold. Whatever was cooked at the grill was hit and miss. Be careful for cross contaminated items in mixing raw pork with what was already cooked. For 2 nights, the main "hot" protein was hot dogs and what looked like spam shish kebab. No eggs for 2 days. No soda for most of the trip. There is no rum at the bar for a couple of days, but you could buy a bottle at hotel shops? Paid for Superior room but did not get. Mattress had fire ants. I got 43 bites on my legs. The front desk always seemed annoyed and was dismissive. After the 2nd night, the maid finally changed my mattress. This was my second time at this resort, but unfortunately, after this experience, I will not return . It's a shame because the location is one of the best.
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Date of stay: December 2023Trip type: Traveled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 weeks ago
We deeply apologize for the issues you encountered during your recent stay with us. We take guest feedback seriously and are sorry that we did not meet your expectations. We understand your disappointment with the quality of food provided. Ensuring a high standard of cuisine is important to us, and we will address the concerns you raised about cold food and cross-contamination to prevent similar situations in the future. We also apologize for any negative interactions or dismissive behavior from our front desk staff. This does not align with our usual standards, and we will address this internally to ensure better treatment for all guests. Regarding the room allocation issue, we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused. While mistakes can happen due to high occupancy levels, we will make every effort to rectify such situations in future stays. Thank you for sharing your constructive feedback as it helps us identify areas where improvements can be made. We hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back in order to demonstrate our commitment to excellence.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Gerry J wrote a review Feb 2024
1 contribution
My wife and I have been visiting Cuba for more than 20 years and have stayed at Barcelo Solymar for all but our first trip. We go for the people and the beaches. We have never left a table "wanting" more. The employees are awesome. We will be back.
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Date of stay: January 2024Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: We kind. Relax and enjoy all that Cuba and its people have to offer. Don't expect 5 Star luxury...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Response from Joan Marqués, Director General at Barcelo Solymar
Responded 2 weeks ago
We would like to express our sincere gratitude for your loyal support and for choosing to stay with us during your visits to Cuba over the past 20 years. We are pleased to hear that you have enjoyed our beaches and had an exceptional experience due to the service provided by our employees. We constantly strive to deliver impeccable service and ensure total guest satisfaction. We appreciate your kind words about our staff, who are dedicated to providing memorable experiences for all our visitors. Your recognition further motivates us to continue improving every day. We look forward to having the pleasure of welcoming you back on your next trip to Cuba and remaining your preferred choice when it comes to accommodation. Please do not hesitate to contact us if there is anything else we can do to further enhance your stay.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Not the right property for you?
There are more places to choose from in the Varadero area.
ALSO KNOWN AS
barcelo hotel solymar, barcelo hotel varadero, barcelo solymar cuba, barcelo solymar hotel cuba, barcelo solymar beach resort, barcelo solymar varadero cuba, barcelo sol y mar
FORMERLY KNOWN AS
Barcelo Solymar Arenas Blancas Resort
LOCATION
CaribbeanCubaMatanzas ProvinceVaradero
NUMBER OF ROOMS
525
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BARCELO SOLYMAR - Updated 2024 Resort (All-Inclusive) Reviews (Varadero, Cuba)

Frequently Asked Questions about Barcelo Solymar
Which popular attractions are close to Barcelo Solymar?
Nearby attractions include Mi Casa Beatles (0.6 miles), Snack Bar Calle 62 (0.4 miles), and Taller de Cerámica Artística (0.5 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at Barcelo Solymar?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free breakfast, a pool, and an on-site restaurant.
Which room amenities are available at Barcelo Solymar?
Top room amenities include a minibar, air conditioning, and a flat screen TV.
What food & drink options are available at Barcelo Solymar?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Barcelo Solymar?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Barcelo Solymar?
Conveniently located restaurants include La Gruta El Vino, Waco's Club, and Varadero 60.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Barcelo Solymar?
Yes, guests have access to a pool and a fitness center during their stay.
Are any cleaning services offered at Barcelo Solymar?
Yes, dry cleaning and laundry service are offered to guests.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Barcelo Solymar?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including Spanish and French.
Are there any historical sites close to Barcelo Solymar?
Many travelers enjoy visiting Cueva de Ambrosio (5.7 miles).
Does Barcelo Solymar have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the ocean view available here.