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“Great visit and Christmas family included!”

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Casa Nivia Melendez
Certificate of Excellence
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
“Great visit and Christmas family included!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 28, 2013

I stayed at Casa Nivia last December during a trip through all Cuba and I was very happy with the house. They treat you very well and I was even invited to Christmas dinner with the whole family (for which they didnt even allowed me to pay). I totally recommend it.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JP85gm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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148 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    113
    25
    7
    3
    0
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22
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8
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
amsterdam
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 26, 2013

Very kind and warm family, actually the best we stayed with in Cuba. Also absolutely the best food we had in Cuba was at this casa! Especially the diner was really awesome. Beatriz and her husband speak pretty good english. It was our honeymoon and we had a great time there. Highly recommended by us. Just a few minutes walk to the citycenter.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank merante
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cologne, Germany
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 12, 2012

This casa is definitely one of the nicest in Cuba! Beatriz and her family are amazing: So friendly and helpful! The rooms are very clean and comfortable, close to the main Plaza and the Casa de la musica. The food is extremely good: soup, vegetables, fish or meat - whatever you wish and even nice (!) vegetarian food - and lots of it.
Any question you might have, they will help you out. THey also organized me a fantastic guide to see The surroundings of Santiago de Cuba.
I travelled through the entire Island and this Casa is definitely part of the top three!

Room Tip: There is one room for two, and another bigger one for three.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank GesaHanna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2012

Loved this place so much. Beatrice and her family are brilliant hosts, and Beatrice is an awesome cook, particularly for vegetarian food - which is often hard to come by in Cuba. The room was clean, spacious and had a great view of Santiago de Cuba. The family really made us feel at home and really went out of their way to help us explore Santiago de Cuba.

Room Tip: Ask for the room upstairs.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Shailyn_1112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 25, 2012

Our stay in this Casa was wonderful, we were welcomed into the family who were very much hospitable. The rooms were very big and comfortable. We ate both breakfast and dinner in the Casa which worked out ideally for us as vegetarians. Beatriz was very accommodating and the food was delicious. The Casa is situated within walking distance of most of the main sights.

Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Shikha550
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK Eurocrat in Brussels
Level Contributor
68 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2012

I feel bad giving this just 2 stars. The owners are very nice and kind, and Beatriz goes out of her way to make people feel welcome and help you settle in. The reservation process was also really easy - we don't speak much Spanish but she speaks and writes respectable English, we used minimal Spanish, and everything was fine.

The problem was, we didn't sleep well at all for either of the two nights we spent here. We're not at all light sleepers - a bit of street noise and traffic isn't a problem for two Londoners. But our room was on the ground floor, right beside the street, and Cuban streets are really noisy, with neighbours hollering to each other up until 1am and street pedlars hawking shrimp, fruit, potatoes, etc from 6am or earlier. It's a bit like a less picturesque version of that scene in the musical "Oliver" ("Who will buy....") If you are naturally insomniac or sleep like the living dead, you'll probably be OK. But bring earplugs and if there's any choice of room, take the highest one you can find.

The problems were compounded by the heat. There is aircon, but it's also too noisy to have running all night long. The ceiling fan is also noisy and next to useless at cooling the rooms, which stay hot because all that separates you and the hot air in the street outside is a thin wood panel. Because of this, if we weren't waking up with the noises from the street, we were waking up because of the sheer heat - like sleeping in a sauna. I know Cuba's hot (and especially Santiago), but we stayed at a lot of different casas and several managed this problem much, much better with more modern aircon and silent ceiling fans. See my review of Casa Maura in Havana for details.

The final nail in this casa's coffin was when we asked if she knew any good taxi driver to take us up to the castle. She booked us a chap she knows well (old family connections etc). He turned up 15 mins late - not a disaster as we had plenty time, but not impressive. We got the tour we needed, but a. it wasn't especially cheap, b. we travelled in a horrid battered old Lada reeking of petrol (with a crazed and cracked windscreen; the car nearly broke down on the way back to the airport) and worst of all c. the man simply did not stop trying to push extra trips and excursions onto us - 20CUC to do this, 10 CUC to do that, 70 CUC for a massive tour, etc. I don't mind people trying to do this once - everyone has to earn a living and of course Cubans want to try to squeeze a bit more money out of tourists. But he pushed us at least 3-4 times, and when this person is your driver for a morning in a cramped little car, that degree of pressure gets seriously uncomfortable, and our refusals got increasingly less polite. If your Spanish is even half decent, I would go and haggle with the taxi drivers in town to see if you can get the tour you want at a sensible price (and if you're lucky, in a pretty vintage 50s car).

The plus points are big - the room is clean, good value at 20 CUC plus 3 CUC each for breakfast, the family is super-friendly and breakfast is nice (though I'd really rather they splashed out on some clingfilm/food covers; you would typically arrive to find the plates of lovely fresh fruit studded with flies). But because both I and my other half had two sleep-free nights plus a very pushy taxi driver to deal with, I can't quite bring myself to give this 3 stars. Compared to other casas, this was definitely one of the poorer relations - ultimately, sleep is essential for people who are travelling, and especially people who have made it all the way out to Santiago.

Room Tip: If there is a choice (we didn't get one!) go upstairs, as high as you can. And bring earplugs an...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Tango_tastic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sofia, Bulgaria
Level Contributor
19 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2012

The casa is really very nice and clean. The room was spacious with a quite noise AC and a fan on the ceiling. The owners are quite friendly and helpful despite they do not speak English very well. The food for dinner was very tasty

However, our room was just next to the street and it was quite noise during the night.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank neshto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casa Nivia Melendez

Property: Casa Nivia Melendez
Address: General Portuondo 510 between Hartman and General Bandera Cuba, Santiago de Cuba 90100, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Santiago de Cuba Province > Santiago de Cuba
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 82 B&Bs / Inns in Santiago de Cuba
Number of rooms: 2
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Colonial home located in the center of the city of Santiago de Cuba, near the Céspedes Park, Trova house, Music house, Hotel Casa Granda and diverse interests as Museum Emilio Bacardí, Museum of the Carnaval, Diego Velásquez among others. It possesses three rooms, six rooms, 4 bathrooms, cooks and dining room; garden with orchids, ferns and shade of grapes for their snacks, dinners, chats or to enjoy a delicious and pure Cuban coffee free, for the house. Abundant water. The two rooms for tourists possess matrimonial and personal bed, conditioned air, fan, lamp at night, wide mirror and hanger, freezer, private bathroom with cold and warm water in the shower. It is not with independent entrance. There is parking possibility, we offer breakfast services, dinners, snacks, laundry, telephone, electricity 110 and 220 Volt, and refrigerator use. Who are interested in nature tourism or to know on the Cuban nature, landscapes, rivers, beaches and mountains can advise him then two field biologists they also live in the house that they accustom to travel the Island, on highway routes. At home live two children, a female of seven and male a nine year-old. The client receives services in Spanish and English. The prices of the room in low season are of 20.00 cuc per night and in high season of 25.00 cuc per night. The breakfasts of 4.00 cuc, offering them abundant and diverse fruits, bread, butter, honey, juice, milk, coffee, eggs… The dinners oscillate between 6.00 and 10.00 cuc in dependence of the strong plate, including vegetal soup, beans, rice, banana planten, potates, salads of vegetables, dessert. Very easy of arriving home. From the airport you takes a car, rent or state and you tells taxi-driver to our address, very near the Céspedes park, single 20 minutes. Of the train station it is on-line straight line in form of L, you takes the avenue Alameda where it is the train station, right until the street of Trinidad and the Alameda, you will see an agency of cars, take the street Trinidad that is gone up, single ten blocks and in the 510 you will see the house. And of the station of Bus Via Azul, you takes a car or on-line straight line the same street of Avenue the Liberators, until arriving to the great park Abel Santamaría, it turns to the rights, taking the street Trinidad, and lowering eight blocks in the 510 the house is. If they want that it picks up him a taxi from the bus terminal to house the cost it is of 5.00 cuc. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Casa Nivia Melendez Santiago De Cuba

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