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“Very pleasant stay”

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IBEROSTAR Playa Alameda Hotel
Ranked #18 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Reviewed March 11, 2011

First time at an all inclusive resort and first time in Cuba. I travelled with my husband, my 10 month old and husbands parents. The grounds are lovely, small and quaint. Very well kept near our building. Housekeeping was amazing. She was like a family member to us. We loved Neysi. She kept the room clean and even tidied up for us. Helpful when you have a little one onboard. The resort food not so great but not great at Cuban resorts in general. To get decent Cuban food go into Veradero. Neysi recommended La Vicaria on 1st ave and 38th. Not bad...better than the resort. The food wasn't too horrible for it was edible just not much flavor. And not ethnic Cuban food. The pool a little small and boring but good for kids. The beach is wonderful. Crowded yes but same mostly everywhere else on Varadero. It was well kept. I highly recommend walking on the beach in the early evening and early morning. The plugs to the taps didn't work in our room so I recommend for a small inconvenience bring a sink whole cover (can purchase at Cdn Tire). Bring a converter if bringing own electritical devices and not an adapter. Good place to stay for a family with young children. Bring baby food for the length you stay in Cuba. If baby eats finger food there is food that baby will eat but warn you lots of food is cooked with lots of butter. The a la cartes had the best food on the resort. Book early the next day (9am at customer service near the front desk) before you meet up with your host.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank 1979jen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 14, 2011

Hello from Iberostar Playa Alameda,
First of all thank you for your comments on this website and of course for recommending. At Iberostar always trying to improve our services to make the most of your family holiday.
I'll give your regards to Neysi and hope you return soon.

Warm regards,

Pedro Morales
General Manager

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Reviewed March 9, 2011

The Hotel made the trip! We went with another couple and had a great time! VARIED and TASTY MENU at all meals including custom omelettes, pasta sauce made fresh from your choice of ingredients . Burgers,steaks,chops,marlin,shrimp,and chicken grilled to your taste. Fantastic salad bar with every type of cheese,cold cut and salad with toppings and dressings of every variety. Fresh fruit, breads and rolls, juices and drinks of every kind! EFFICIENT,COURTEOUS STAFF.Rooms and grounds in great shape. Water and beach clean. Lots to see and do! A++++but avoid Havana! City in shambles with way too many beggars! Ride the open-aired double decker bus around Varadero!!!Enjoy!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Biddetbob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 14, 2011

Dear guest,
Thank you for your beautiful comments about us and share in this web. We hope you come back soon to any Iberostar hotel family.

Pedro Morales
General Manager

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Reviewed March 8, 2011

Our family went for two weeks starting Feb. 20th. After reading the reviews, i was scared of what it would be like. Well no need to wonder if you chose the right resort. It is very nice, the staff wonderful and really clean. When you go on vacation, do not expect the same thing as home otherwise stay home. The food well you always find something to eat. The a la carte restaurants go to the Romantico if you ask for lobster one day before the reservations they will make it for you. The staff is not always asking for tips and i love that about vacations (although i love tipping).
Being a Varadero fan, I had gone to Iberostar Varadero the previous years so I was able to compare and really saw a difference in the activities better, staff nicer the difference buffet needs more choices and they need to fill their plates more often. The beach hey 5 star.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank joann1965
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 9, 2011

Dear guest,

Thank you for trusting us and thanks for choosing Iberostar.
Thank you to share your comments on this site and recommend us. For us it is a privilege that we choose on your holiday and will continue working to improve our hotel every day and offer the best possible service.

Warm regards,

Pedro Morales
General Manager

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Reviewed March 2, 2011

It's true, the resort is beautiful, professional stage entertainment, friendly staff, drinks flow freely. Well maintained grounds, palm trees, fountains, and cool breezes add to enjoyment wherever you are on the property. The fitness centre/spa service building and tennis courts behind the teatro were a surprise. The court that connects the gym and spa entrances has a little round whirl pool (okay, no whirl, just a bit of gurgle) that is charmingly simple, symmetrical, and serene. A little oasis from the oasis.

I saw the entrances of many resorts on the strip. Playa Alameda is one of the better looking ones.

On the down side, the food is typical of what I found in Cuba - bland, overcooked, over salted. Maybe the cooks don't like or don't understand the food they serve. They use powder stock base for soups and reconstituted powder mashed potatoes. A la carte restaurants provide service for show, as if resto was training wait staff. I didn't need three people to bring me a roll and butter with trembling hands (one brought small plate, one brought a dab of butter, one brought the dry roll). Having said that, I quite enjoyed our last buffet meal. Maybe I was particularly hungry or was getting used to the food.

Despite requests, our broken toilet never got fixed properly. The lampshade by the bed was fixed by sticking scotch tape to wire frame and shade.

A neighbouring mariner offers snorkelling with catamaran on the beach for 20 CUC. Fabulous. Don't bother with snorkelling excursions tour operators offer. We took one for 32 CUC where a tour bus rounded up guests from the various resorts (one hour), then drove to Caribbean waters (two hours), where we snorkelled for 30 minutes. Then we drove back, dropping guests off at their resorts. That's six hours on the bus for 30 minutes of snorkelling.

All in all though, a very nice place to stay for a week with family and friends, and I was sad to leave.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with family
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3  Thank TrippingAllOver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 4, 2011

First of all thank you for recommending our hotel and for your nice review.
All our staff are 100% involved in trying to provide the best customer service as you deserve Iberostar. We have recently renovated the hotel and this year we are working to improve services and care to all our customers so we are pleased that our work will serve to have enjoyed your holiday in Cuba.
I invite you to come visit us again or choose another of our sister hotels Iberostar in which I'm sure that will give you the best possible service.

Kind regards,
Pedro Morales
General Manager

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Reviewed March 1, 2011

I've been to Cuba several times over the past 15 years, though never at the same place twice.

We, my brother and I, were there from Feb 18 to 25. We arrived, it seemed, in the middle of a jelly fish invasion. The beach flag was red because of all the jelly fish. This seemed to last for the first three days of our trip. Which was a drag, but obviously not the resort's fault.

This resort is nice. It's a lot smaller than many others, which can be a good thing. Everything is nice and close by. It is at the far end of the peninsula, far from central Varadero, which is also nice; however in my opinion the beaches are wider and better earlier on. At this resort, there were times on good days where people were sunbathing almost literally on top of one another. Very little elbow room.

I've always loved Cuba for the friendliness of the staff. The Iberostar Playa Alameda was amazing even in this respect: all the way from the gardener trimming the lawn to the maid (who helped us get water when we got into our room), to the chefs, cooks and servers.

A special shout out to Tania, Laura, Laurys, Yesnery, Tony, Yohan and Damary at the Piano Bar. The best servers I've ever had...and I've had a few. Thanks.

And to the very busy coffee ladies at the piano bar in the morning. Never got your names. You all work too hard.

So far so good. However, it wasn't all great.

We had room 1623, a "special room" we were told. Nice and close to the beach. Well if special room means:

Consistently leaking flushing and broken flushing handle;
CD Player doesn't work;;
Sink Stopper broken (tough to shave without water in the sink);;
Wonky door latch that constantly needed it to be fiddled with for it to lock properly;
Situated right above the garbage bin of the seafood restaurant.

Well then yes, it was a special room.

We complained to the front desk immediately. They wrote it down on the work order (which was a page long). And we never heard from them again. Nothing was ever looked at or fixed.

I had some issues with the room itself too. There's not much closet/drawer space. Only one drawer to serve up to four people? (not counting the night table ones). And the drawers were wooden, without runners, a pain to open and close without dragging the whole table.

Minimal points, perhaps. But the whole "one bottle of water in your room every two days" is stupid, especially when they miss your room.

We were given water on Saturday; but they seemed to miss our room on Monday. On Tuesday evening, we told front desk (hello Fide) who at first just told us "you'll get it tomorrow". I said, "not good enough, we haven't had water in our room since Saturday".

So once again he entered it into the work order "you'll have water," he said, as if to get rid of us.

We didn't get our bar refilled till Wednesday. We got our bottle of water changed and only one beer replaced.

I just find this sort of stuff really annoying.

And while generally yes, the grounds were clean; we had a couple beers in our balcony on the third floor. Our empty beer cans got swept by the wind overnight and fell to the ground below at the entrance to our block of units--where they remained for at least four days. That's just unacceptable.

Because otherwise this is a nice, cosy and very friendly resort.

The food was fine. We ate at all three a la cartes (and yes the a la carte reservation guy is not always where he says he's gonna be). This resort does focus on seafood, but there's also some good steak at the romantico, pork and lamb at the meditterano as well as a good surf and turf. The service is great and no singers bothering you!
The buffet was pretty good; somewhat of the same stuff, but not bad. And there were plenty of quick grab options for lunch. The pool snack bar makes great steak sandwiches and pizzas. There were also two pool side barbecues; one day it was fish, the other chicken and pork.

This is also one of the first Cuban resorts I've been to which basically bans smoking from any indoor place...it's not always enforced, but still a good thing.

I'd recommend this resort with the proviso to stay away from room 1623 and to keep pestering front desk if you want something done--though they probably still want help you.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with friends
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4  Thank JoeSerge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 7, 2011

Greetings from Iberostar Playa Alameda,

Thanks for recommending and share your comments. I am happy to tell us everything good in our hotel and also in the details that we can improve. We hope to return soon to visit us and we can exceed your expectations.

Pedro Morales,
General Manager

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Reviewed February 28, 2011

The property is well landscaped and the buildings were very nice and well taken care of. The resort is relatively small and easy to get around. The room on the third floor was good and everything worked as operated. The maid service was top notch.
There was one buffet which was busy but we never had to line up. Wait for the omlette stations and pasta was a bit long but other food was consistently good and there were enough options to provide variety.

The beach was excellent and despite being busy the was always enough chairs . The pool area on the other hand could have been larger. Service at the bars was excellent and always prompt and cheerful.

Only complaint was the reservation for the ala carte restaurants we impossible due to excessive lines for to reserve or the one person not being available during posted times. This issue was addressed to the front desk but they didn't care

Otherwise it was a good vacation at a good property and good value for money.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank sasquatch27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded March 4, 2011

Dear guest,
Thank you very much for posting and sharing your opinion about our hotel on the site. Very pleasing your comments about the food, service and cleanliness. With regard to the reservations in specialty restaurants invite you to the next time you make any reservations the same day and thus be more convenient for you.
I hope you return soon to visit.

Kind regards,
Pedro Morales
Iberostar Playa Alameda

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Reviewed February 28, 2011

While I had been told that Cuba was a good place to visit, I wouldn't say the same to my friends. The best part of our trip by far was a day in Havana, including the Tropicana Show, and that was an amazing adventure.

The resort looks nice and the grounds are well taken care of. But the rooms are very tired, beds uncomfortable and service is just so-so. Perhaps because I was only travelling with my daughter, but I found that men receive a much higher level of service than women, and as two women travelling together, it was quite disappointing.

The food is crappy. Canned vegetables, limited choice of fruit (mostly not ripe) and mystery stews. I was thankful for the fresh bread and cheddar cheese that kept us going. There was an assortment of fish, but it was fried in a lot of oil. Although we ate three dinners in the restaurants, it was the same food as the buffet.

Next time, I'll go somewhere else, and not Cuba.

  • Stayed: February 2011
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Thank BTraveller122
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about IBEROSTAR Playa Alameda Hotel

Address: Las Morlas, Km 19 | Punta Hicacos, Varadero, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in Varadero
#9 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#14 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
Price Range: $142 - $390 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — IBEROSTAR Playa Alameda Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 391
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on a beautiful stretch of Varadero Beach surrounded by tropical gardens. Elegant atmosphere. Wide range of gastronomy. Varied entertainment programme. Golf course nearby. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Iberostar Playa Alameda Varadero
Iberostar Varadero
Playa Alameda Varadero

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