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“An enjoyable experience overall”

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Hotel Roc Presidente
Ranked #15 of 80 Hotels in Havana
Reviewed February 9, 2012

Hotel Presidente is a 5cuc taxi ride into Old Havana. The hotel itself had an old world charm about it. When we arrived we were greeted by the bellboy Jorge (an extremely likeable and knowledgable guy) unfortunately our room wasn't quiet ready but he took it upon himself to keep us informed and showed us around the hotel and pool area whist we waited. Unfortunately could not say the same of the reception staff who were not very pleasant. The room itself was clean and comfortable and a good size as was the bathroom. The self service buffet breakfast was very disappointing, fortunately their chef was on hand to make a fresh omelet and this was the saving grace for us. The pool area is basic but does have plenty of loungers. The pool bar does good toasted sandwiches at lunchtime and is not too overpriced. Close to the hotel we found three lovely paladers (these are family run restaurants which are part a cuban's home and makes for a unique dining experience), Castas & Tal, Atelier and Razones, all are within walking distance and I have got to say offer the best dining experiences we had in the whole of Havana. For information and places to visit in and around Havana again our bellboy Jorge was a wealth of information and help us definitely get the most out of our stay at the Presidente.

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank SussieP
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Reviewed February 8, 2012

I booked this hotel as a part of a package tour that says it is a four-star hotel, but I was anxicous reading some bad reviews on this site. My room was clean (except under the bed seats, which I found some hairs but no blood signs of bedbugs) and large (2 double beds plus space for 2 more double beds) with high ceiling (approx. 3ft). Air conditioned. Clean and large bathroom with warm shower. I got a wonderful ocean-view room, which I heard about the half of this hotel rooms get.

Breakfast buffet had 8 different hot varieties (omlett, etc), 3-4 kinds of fruits, ham, cheese, bread, several sweets, juice, yogurt (surprisingly good), coffee and tea, all decent taste. I was impressed how hard buffet staff works hard, too. Front desk speaks fluent English and helpful. There is a currency exchange within the hotel.

The only downside maybe, is the hotel is a bit far from Old Havana. But Havana is a walkable city so I walked about 2hrs one way, took taxi (approx. $10 incl. tip) one way. There are taxis always standing by at the hotel so you'll have no trouble finding if you want to take one. Because it was off from the core of the city, I think the air was cleaner and less noise when I opened the window. Overall, I had a good stay.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank aquatomato
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded August 1, 2012

Dear: Is very important for our General Direction and all the staff your opinion about our hotel, its advantages and unadvantages. We feel very happy to know you exceeded your expectation between us. We are sorry for the inconveniences founded in the room. Thanks a lot again for your time. The best.

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Reviewed January 23, 2012

When I was younger I would go to Havana and always wanted to stay in the Presidente, so even though it was a bit far from Old Havana I decided to book a long weekend there. Overall it was pleasant, the staff was very friendly and I felt very safe leaving my belongings there with no fear of having them stolen, as apparently happens at some hotels. The breakfast buffet was very good (for Cuba) and it was all you can eat, a good way to start the day. They also let you eat out by the pool, so when it is -25 at home it is a nice change. The one thing that bothered me at the end of my vacation was that the woman at the CADECA (money changer in the lobby) ripped me off. Not for much, but she didn't give me a receipt which made me suspicious and sure enough I was short-changed. She denied it of course (said it was rounding) and I wasn't going to argue but having felt so comfortable in the hotel it reminded me that I had to still watch myself, even though I speak fluent Spanish. I would add, though, that I don't think she was a hotel employee, I think she was sent there by CADECA so I can't fault the hotel for that.
One place where I didn't have problems, and indeed found very helpful, was the CADECA at the San Jose market in Old Havana. I was even able to get local currency (not available at the hotel) and this lets you buy food from local establishments which was a real experience. I found a bar on Concordia and Soledad where beers where 6 pesos (25 cents) and an even better local neighborhood bar further out with the same price on the way to Miramar--hard to explain in a hotel review where it is though, but ask me for directions if you'd like it was very interesting.

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled solo
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6  Thank Canuckker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2012

Dear Sr: We are very pleased you have writed your opinions about our services an the staff. Your opinions are vey interesting for the people who wants to know about our hotel and other kind of services. Is very good to know you had a nice stay here with us and you trust us. Please we ask you if you are planning to come again to Habana, let us know to contact and meet you. Thanks a lot for everything. The best regards.

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Reviewed January 21, 2012

We stayed here for a couple of nights at the end of our time in Cuba, having spent the rest of our trip staying in casa particulares. The hotel is quite far from Habana Vieja and Habana Centro, but only a block form the Malecon. We walked back and forth from Habana centro (approx 45 mins) but we like to walk a lot- for most people a taxi might be preferable. We had stayed in Habana centro for a week at the start of our trip so to stay a bit further out, where we didn't get harassed as soon as we stepped out the door, was a much better option for us, and we could relax a bit more.

Value for money is pretty good here, at least compared to the rest of the major Havana hotels, which are quite overpriced. The rooms are clean and the bathrooms work well but are a bit antiquated. We had a room over the pool and slept fairly well. The pool is pretty basic but the bar there makes drinks for a good price (3 CUC each), and their mojitos are better than most of the ones we had in Cuba. Bar food is ordinary though.

The hotel, to our surprise, put on a party for NYE that was a LOT of fun, complete with a bottle of rum and a pack of silly novelty things for everyone to wear. The band was good and the party was not dry like we had expected. (We went to a Xmas party at another hotel that was a bit painful, so we like any hotel that can put on a good party!).

Cleaning staff, breakfast staff, bar staff and concierge staff are very friendly, front desk staff are not. This seems to be a trend all the way through Cuba, they were also unfriendly and argumentative at 3 other hotels when we went to visit people or use the internet.

Their internet was fairly good- 4 computers (most other hotels we tried only had two), and the internet never cut out while we were there (it did at both other hotels we tried).
Breakfast has quite a good variety of food, and they replace things as they run out, so if you go to breakfast late you don't miss out.

Although the location is a bit out of the way, the value, breakfast, internet and bar were much better here than at some of the bigger hotels closer to the centre. You cannot expect a lot in the way of sparkling new hotel rooms in Cuba so this is a very good option if you are wary of being ripped off (as Cuban hotels are prone to do!)

RESTAURANT TIP: We were walked over to a restaurant a block away by the concierge (presumably he got a commission). It was called CASTAS Y TAL, Calle E no. 158B, on the 11th floor. The best meal by far that we ate in all of Cuba, and just about the best cocktails we had there too. Very good prices too. Definitely give this restaurant a try, it is only a short walk from the hotel.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank travellers_from_oz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2012

Dear: We want to thanks a lot for writing your opinions about your stay in our hotel and give us your recommendations about our services. Thanks for your opinion about the mojito and the New Year Party. We will trasnmit it to the people who worked to make it possible. Our hotel felt very pleasent with your presence and we hope if you decide to visit us again please let us know to meet you. Thanks again. The best regards.

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Reviewed January 19, 2012

My wife and I spent a week at the El Presidente on a tour that included New Year's Eve. We enjoyed the historic nature of the building (restored Art Nouveau), the view of the Gulf of Mexico (we were given a large, top-floor room on the ocean side of the building), the several architecturally interesting buildings in the vicinity, at least three interesting restaurants within walking distance, and the quiet nature of the neighborhood (as opposed to the noise of Old Havana). That said, this is a hotel that caters to tour groups and it can be difficult to deal with the front desk if a group is arriving or checking out. The breakfast food was adequate, but the coffee was dispensed from a push-button device that made four varieties (black, with milk, etc.), all of them bad. There is a money changing bureau on the premises. A taxi into Old Havana ran three to four pesos, depending on how hard you wanted to bargain. After-dinner drinks on the veranda were quite pleasant. Laundry was available. There were four internet stations in the lobby; access was via cards purchased from the front desk (6 pesos for one hour). The bell boys were exceptionally pleasant and helpful, on two occasions walking us to good restaurants in the area (from which they presumably got a commission) that we never would have found on our own because they were on upper floors in apartment buildings. The ladies at the front desk were the weak link in the personnel chain. While we were on a tour that included accommodation, the rack rate was 120 pesos. Overall, a reasonably pleasant place to stay and a lot cheaper, even if one includes cab fares into town, than the several hotels we priced in Old Havana.l

Room Tip: The upper rooms on the Gulf of Mexico side are preferred, although the windows can howl if the wind...
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Mason M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2012

Dear Mr & Mrs: We have read your opinion about our hotel and our services and the attention of the staff, we thanks you these opinions because help us to be better each day in our hospitality and services. We will take the respective measures taking account your recommendations. We will transmit the congratulations to the bellboys. Thanks a lot for your advices and opinions these are very useful for our work. The best regards.

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Reviewed January 19, 2012

My family stayed at The Presidente for New Year, celebrating the Fin de Ano at the hotel. They gave us a marvelous evening with great food, fantastic music and a wonderful atmosphere. When we left to go to Trinidad de Cuba on the coast, they offered to look after two suitcases until we return. I would certainly stay there again.

Room Tip: The even numbers on most floors face the sea.
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank judithmore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2012

Dear Judith: We are very pleased to know you and your family had a great stay in our Hotel. Thakns for your opinion about the New Year Party with Dinner. I will speak with the people who worked and did it you had felt very happy join us. If it is possible to you to come again with friends please let us know to meet you. Sincerely yours.

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Reviewed January 17, 2012

All aspects of the Presidente made our stay one to remember and repeat! It may not be walking distance from Havana Vieja, but does offer lovely walks in the Vedado area and therefore an opportunity to see a different side of Havana. The hop on hop off tour bus stops right at the door so there are lots of options for moving around to other city sights. The rooms are comfortable, the lobby is elegant, with nightly concerts by a wonderful Cuban band. We only ate once in the restaurant and the service was very slow. Breakfast buffet was really nice. The pool area is lovely and offers a nice respite from the heat and touring. For the price, this is a really nice Havana option.

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank canadiantravelbugs66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ivettehabana, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Hotel Roc Presidente, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2012

Dear: We felt very happy when we read you opinion about your stay and our services. We are very pleased you have took time to write these comments about us. It help us to be better each day. It is good to know you would have good memories of your visit in Havana and the President Hotel. Sincerely yours.

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Additional Information about Hotel Roc Presidente

Address: C/ Calzada 110 | Esquina Avda de los Presidentes Plaza de la Revolución, Havana, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Ciudad de la Habana Province > Havana
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 80 Hotels in Havana
Price Range: $175 - $349 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Roc Presidente 3*
Number of rooms: 158
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The ROC-Hotels Presidente **** is located just 3 kms from the old historical part of Havana, "La Havana Vieja", a twenty minutes drive from the Jose Marti International Airport. It is only 20 minutes from the East Side beaches and 200 meters from the renowned Amadeo Roldan Theatre. Located in El Vedado, only 200 meters from the famous Pier of Havana, "el Malecon", on the Avenue of the Presidents, and flanked by the Cuban Foreign Office and the "Casa de las Americas", the Hotel Presidente rises gracefully with its 10 floors of history and in its peculiar colours of vermilion. The Roc-Hotels Presidente characterises itself for being housed in a spectacular building from the 1920's, being the first skyscraper in the city of Havana, and for its breathtaking interiors representing the era it was built in, but with all its modern comfort and services that the client seeks. The Hotel was reformed in 2011 following a clear luxury style and keeping all the grandeur of its recent history that included many famous personalities of diplomacy and business companies, as well as the art world. It is for this reason that an exquisite care was taken to preserve every detail during its restoration and decoration. Throughout the interior of the Hotel, displayed are more than 400 classified pieces of art, giving a very unique taste to the guests from the moment of their arrival. They can enjoy the "Lobby Museum", relax by the poolside, or go on interesting excursions to Pinar del Rio, Varadero, Santa Maria del Mar or other famous sites nearby. We offer bed and breakfast (CP board), breakfast and dinner ( Half board). We have WIFI in all rooms and all service areas. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Presidente Hotel Havana

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