We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Second visit - perhaps not a third”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 65 Hotels in Varadero
Ottawa, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Second visit - perhaps not a third”
Reviewed January 9, 2014 via mobile

We, a retired couple, stayed at the Royal Hicacos in December 2013 for one week. It was our second visit in about a year and a half. The good things about the hotel that remain are: adult only, great wide white beach, friendly staff who (unlike at other Cuban hotels we have stayed at) are willing to serve even if every single drink or service doesn't come with a tip. The food remains Cuban acceptable, with the usual Cuban limited selection of fresh fruit and vegetables and a tendency for meat to be a bit chewy. Service in the non-buffet restaurants was very good. Our room was identical to our previous one - large and clean with a comfortable bed. The air conditioning had trouble getting below 22C or so, possibly due to the fact that it is motion-sensor operated and shuts off when you are out or fast asleep. It is augmented by an overhead fan that - in our case - squeaked and groaned and woke us up at night. Despite numerous requests, it was only fixed for the last night. The property had sections under painting and renovation but might have looked a little more tired than in our last visit. The biggest disappointment was the entertainment. The last time there were great professional bands most nights. This time that was the case only on Friday nights and the rest were given to an in-house Tropicana-style troupe who performed too many tired variations of the the same thing night after night. We are not sure if this change was due to Sandals selling the property last summer, or just a general economizing. We heard that the owner of Sunwing Airlines was to take over in January and perhaps this will change the deficiencies. It was fine, but unless we were assured that things had improved, we would have to carefully consider returning.

Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
8 Thank SabaOttawa_Canada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

4,315 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    2,709
    1,179
    329
    71
    27
See reviews for
310
3,266
63
18
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (931)
Date | Rating
  • Czech first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hungarian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Slovak first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Cornwall, Ontario
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed January 8, 2014

My wife and I stayed at the Royal Hicacos during Christmas and it was fantastic!

The flight - We were with Sunwing and the service on the flight was great. We would definitely fly with them again.

Hotel arrival - It was about a 40 min. ride from the airport which flew by because we had fun meeting all the people on the bus. We were greeted with sparkling wine at the hotel and check in went very smoothly.

Our room - Our room was on the third floor. We suggest you ask for the second floor the rooms are all the same but it less stairs to climb. The room was large and very clean and everything worked. The bed was comfortable. We had no coffee maker but one was delivered promptly when we call the front desk. We had a large balcony the was kept as clean as the room.

The pool - The pools were all very clean and we had hot weather so the water was at a good temperature. They have six Jacuzzi's but we only found one that was working. Not a big deal when you have hot weather.

The bars - Our favorite bar was the swim up, we met some great people from all over the world. The main bar had the entertainment was in the evening. It was great.

The food - It took me a couple days to get used to the cooking but we adapted. Our favorite was the omelette station cooked to your liking. Christmas eve they had lobster tail on the buffet, some of the best I've ever had. My wife like the pizza but neither of us enjoyed the burgers the meat was too different. We suggest you bring you favorite condiments with you to spice up the food. Over all it was good.

The beach - The beach was nice but we are pool people so we have no comment.

The service - The service was what made our holiday so great. There was no communication gap and the staff was genuinely sincere when helping you enjoy your holiday.

Final thoughts - The Royal Hicacos was great and we will go back.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank OnOurWayToHaveFun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 27, 2014
Dear guests:

Thank you for your beautiful comments! It was such a pleasure to read you! We are so glad to hear that you have enjoyed our new diamond!

Your happiness is important to us. We guide ourselves by the level of satisfaction of our clients. It is so important to us to know that we exceed your expectations and we know we have done our job correctly when we read that you are coming back to visit us!

Your comments really warmed our hearts dear guests, we cannot thank you enough!

We look forward to welcoming you again to Royal Hicacos, your very clean hotel!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Red Deer, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2014

Cuba is known for its excellent service to tourists and this hotel is no exception. We were on our honeymoon and were treated very well by all staff. After tipping the waiters the first day, they remembered what we liked to drink. When we would go to the breakfast buffet, we would pick a table in the section that our favourite waiter was working and when we would return to the table with our food, our espressos would be sitting on the table without having to ask for them. We would go to the piano bar every evening and the waiter would bring us our favourite drinks without asking what we would like to order.
The fixtures in the bathroom needed to be updated as they were rusting but it was easy to see past that. Our bed was comfortable and the room service was great. If you leave change out though, it will be taken as a tip. We did leave tips and little gifts.
The beach was beautiful and clean. It could have been combed though as it was very lumpy.
The resort is in a great location because it is out of the city of Varadero but for 5 CUC you can ride a bus into town and your pass is good for the whole day. It's very safe to walk around Varadero. There's are lots of little shops and restaurants. Most of the shops carry the same items so there's not a lot of variation for souvenirs. The food in the restaurants in town (off resort) is very good.
We took a tour bus into Havana and followed a tour guide around for the day. The thing about that tour is you look like a tourist (target). People will ask you for things such as milk for their baby at home. We never felt unsafe because as soon as you say "no", they will leave you alone. If someone offers to do something for you, negotiate the price before they do it. That even goes for taking a picture of their belongings. If we were to Havana again, we would do it without a tour group as it is said to be safe. We have been told that there is nowhere a tourist cannot go in Cuba.
Again, it is the people of Cuba that make it such a great place to visit.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Leanne B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 25, 2014
Dear guests:

Thank you for your beautiful comments! It was such a pleasure to read you!

Your happiness is important to us. We guide ourselves by the level of satisfaction of our clients. It is so important to us to know that we exceed your expectations and we know we have done our job correctly when we read that you are coming back to visit us!

We appreciate you taking the time to share your experience with us dear guests, thank you!

We look forward to welcoming you again to Royal Hicacos, your wonderful staff hotel!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Provost, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2014

We visited the royal hicacos over christmas and new years and had a marvelous experience.The food was pretty good overall there was always something to eat.We loved the lobster at the sea food restaurant the best and the chicken at the italian,the buffet always had salad and soups and breads if one is very fussy with lots of choices.Overall the staff does a pretty bang up job as far as we were concerned after all it is cuba. The hotel is very clean and is up dating the property everyday.There is always lots to do and the entertainment staff are always trying to get you involved.People have so many things to do we almost never wanted to leave the property.We do love the awsome beach and the pools.You could hang out at either all day.There was no venders hassling you and staff were always smiling and willing to help you in any way possible.eg!we needed more clothes hangers and a newer coffee maker got both in minutes we were very impressed. We really did enjoy most of the shows especially the dancers and the water show at the pool.The music at the stage is turned up a little to loud which turned some people off for some shows. No kids at the resort was very nice as i am allergic. We went on a hellocopter tour booked through the russian tour company for 229 cucs.The trip was my favorite tour yet.The trip was done in russian and canadian and lasted all day.First you ga to the airport with your passport and ticket with the tour group and get on an old russin hellocopter and fly across cuba.Then you get on a catamaran and check out a cool beach with star fish in the water you can actually pick up.Then back on the boat to ga snorkling which was pretty nice.Then we went to an amazing beach and had a chicken lunch and had 3.5 hours to do what you want.The sand was like silk.There was a dolphin show and you could interact with them for extra cucs.Then we visited a sea turtle place and got to hold one and even got to pick up a baby also.You had yo donate 1 peso for this it was awsome. I would even do this trip again i enjoed it so much.copter very loud bring ear plugs. So overall we had a wonderfull holiday and would love to return.We would like to say one thing to the complainers .Cmon man! ease up on the people everyone forgets they are working so hard for us and trapped at work over the holidays away from their families.Show at least a little concideration for others. In closing i would like to thank all the staff and all the new friends we made over the last to weeks for making our holiday very special.WE WILL BE BACK.GOD BLESS AND THANKYOU!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Elivis D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 25, 2014
Dear guests:

Thank you very much for your comments. It was a pleasure for us to read them.

Your satisfaction is our reason for living. Your comments are the ones who guide us to a better hotel and to a better service. We believe that there is always room for improvement so even if our clients are happy, we make a point to revise all of our departments regularly to ensure that it stays that way! Nothing makes us prouder than to read that you are definitely coming back sometime in the future!

Thank you for sharing your experience with us dear guests; we appreciate your comments!

We certainly look forward to welcoming you to Royal Hicacos, your diamond in the sun.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 5, 2014

My husband and I just got back from the Royal Hicacos and we loved it. Yes the food is bland but that's Cuba, the staff are so friendly and no you don't have to tip all the time but it's the polite thing to do. Our room was always clean and the first couple days our fridge was empty but for the rest if our 7 day trip there was beer and pop for us. We had coffee for our coffee maker everyday and our maid even left us nice notes. The recreation staff was amazing and all in all we had an amazing honey moon!!!!! Free water sports and scuba lessons and very friendly staff tip or no tip!!! :-)

  • Stayed December 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MandyKrahn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 23, 2014
Dear guests:

Thank you so much for your beautiful comments. It was a pleasure reading them.

Every time we receive comments like yours, it fills us up with energy to continue doing more and more for you. That is what we are all about. Making you happy. Fulfilling your needs while you are on vacation is our reason for living. Nothing makes us prouder than when we are able to exceed your expectations!

Thank you dear guests for your wonderful comments, they are very much appreciated!

We look forward to welcoming you again to Royal Hicacos your diamond shining in the sun!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Walters Falls, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed January 5, 2014

Royal Hicacos Review Dec 2013

My wife and I stayed at the Royal Hicacos from Dec 8th to 15th, 2013. It was our fourth visit to the resort, and our first since Sandals pulled out. We were concerned that with Sandals leaving the resort, the resort may have declined. Nothing could be further from the truth. In the two years we have been going to the resort we have never seen it look better. If you have been put off by Sandals leaving, don't be, the place is better than ever.

The new owners are putting a great effort into the grounds and buildings. The buildings are being painted, the rooms renovated and the gardens groomed. All of the little deficiencies, such as cracked tiles and worn boards in the boardwalks are being fixed.

The front desk staff were courteous and efficient in checking us in and out.

We found the food in the buffet to be fresh, hot and varied. The buffet staff is quick and attentive. The a la carte restaurants were excellent with great service. I stayed in a 5 star resort in Cayo Santa Maria in October 2013 and the food didn't come close to that at the Royal Hicacos.

We stayed in the 25 block again and found the room to be spotless, clean and fresh. The air conditioning worked great. The linens were clean and the pillows were new and fresh. The beds were a little hard for our liking. The day and night maids were wonderful. Our bar was stocked daily with whatever we asked for. Gin is no longer available, which is too bad as we are gin drinkers. Alex and Doreme in concierge were very attentive to any need that arose. We drink a lot of water and coffee and we always had extra delivered to the room daily after asking once.

The beach was, as always, clean and tidy. Some of the palapas are getting worn and need new palm fronds inserted. Some of the beach lounge chairs are very worn and need to be replaced. We always frequent the west end of the beach as it is quiet. We were always offered drink service on the beach. I would suggest more garbage receptacles on the beach as some people just drop their empties. It would make less work for the staff.

The pool bar is a great spot to transition from the beach to the evening. Lisette, Angie and Rey take very good care of their customers. The three of them really make the pool bar a fun experience. We did find it strange that there are no longer blenders at the pool bar to make some of the drinks. We don’t know why the new owner removed them. We missed the great Chocolate Monkeys that Lisette has made us in the past.

We frequented the lobby bar and never had a problem with service or quality of the drinks. They make a great Manhattan. The same can be said for the Piano Bar and the Cigar Bar. I found the selection of cigars in the cigar store was limited. I was told the factories were on partial shutdown. It would be nice if the box and single prices were displayed better.

The recreation staff are great at what they do. There is always something to do if you want to. We mostly lay on the beach and watch. Big Alex, Iliana, and the others, always make us feel welcome.

We quite enjoy the entertainment shows in the evening. Rice and Beans and the magic show are great.

Over our visits to the resort we have made many friends among the staff. It was always nice to sit and have lunch or dinner with them in the buffet and catch up on their lives and families. The new management no longer allows this. We don't understand why, as it was great for public relations. For us this was the only really negative thing we have found with the new management. We really missed dining with our friends from the resort.

In closing, all we can say is that if you haven't visited the Royal Hicacos, give it a try.... you'll likely go back!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank GreliksReliks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 23, 2014
Dear guests:

Thank you so much for your beautiful comments. It was a pleasure reading them.

Every time we receive comments like yours, it fills us up with energy to continue doing more and more for you. That is what we are all about. Making you happy. Fulfilling your needs while you are on vacation is our reason for living. Nothing makes us prouder than when we are able to exceed your expectations!

Thank you dear guests for your wonderful comments, they are very much appreciated!

We look forward to welcoming you again to Royal Hicacos your diamond shining in the sun!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2014 via mobile

We stayed in August and we could not fault it. It was our honeymoon and we stayed in one of the two Royal Suites and it was fantastic. We had our own little hut with a massive living room, balcony with a table where you could order a private meal to be brought to you any time of the day (all inuded) and nothing was to much trouble if it wasn't on the menu they got it for you, their was a massive bedroom with a massive comfy bed and then the bathroom a Huge double shower and a big double jacuzzi bath amazing. The room came with what is described as an inclusive mini bar but it was not mini full size premium bottles and topped up everyday including champers everyday.

A la carte restaurants were amazing and booking was not a problem we decided on the day rung the concierge and they sorted it with in minutes, our fav was the la caribe (ask for pavel he is an awesome waiter).

The royal suite includes a free spa treatment each daily - book your whole time as soon as you get to the resort - we loved our morning pamper sessions before heading the the pool.

Pool area was always clean and pool bar amazing they remembered your drink and even can to your subbed with one if they were quiet we had many a good afternoon with lots of other couples and made lots of friends we loved it. There was entertainment in the afternoon and you could join in but was not pressured we did even though I said I wouldn't and it was fab also once a week they did a big hog roast in the afternoon this was fab.

Do remember to tip, it doesn't have to be a lot but they do appreciate it. I asked the maid if she wanted our toiletries at the end and she was really pleased with this as they can be expensive things for them to but ( we also left her some pasos)

Another tip get the gardener to chop you down a fresh coconut at then the poor some rum in its fab also incuded but we tipped a pasos each time just as a thanks.

I cannot compliment this place enough and I have been many 5 star plus places it's certainly value for money.

Anyone thinking of going, go for it ignor the bad reviews and have a fab time

Amanda & Andy xx

Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank Mandaandandyrobb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
royalhicacos, Manager at Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 27, 2014
Dear guests:

Congratulations!! We are so proud that you choose us for such an important milestone in your life! We certainly hope that you will share some of your pictures with us! That is so romantic!!

Our main goal is to please you. If you are happy we are happy, it is as simple as that. We work hard night and day to surpass your expectations and once that is done, we continue to invent new ways to surprise and enlighten you!

Thank you so much for sharing your comments with us dear guests and congratulations again!
We wish you many more years of happiness to come!

We look forward to welcoming you back for the second time at Royal Hicacos, your amazing hotel!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Varadero hotels
0.6 mi away
Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba
1.8 mi away
Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero
2.2 mi away
Ocean Vista Azul
Ocean Vista Azul
#8 of 65 in Varadero
1,515 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
6.0 mi away
Starfish Cuatro Palmas
Starfish Cuatro Palmas
#9 of 65 in Varadero
1,275 reviews
2.2 mi away
Paradisus Princesa del Mar Resort & Spa
0.7 mi away
Melia Las Antillas
Melia Las Antillas
#11 of 65 in Varadero
4,173 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa

Property: Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa
Address: Carretera Las Morlas km 15 | Punta Hicacos, Varadero 42200, Cuba (Formerly Royal Hicacos)
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Varadero
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#3 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
#7 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#13 Family Hotel in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 404
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled within lush tropical gardens and just steps from the azure blue waters and powder white sand of Cuba's finest beach lies the award-winning Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa, an Adults Only Luxury All Inclusive Resort. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Booking.com, Expedia, Cancelon, HotelsClick, TripOnline SA, TravelUp and Evoline ltd so you can book your Royalton Hicacos Varadero Resort & Spa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Hicacos Varadero
Sandals Cuba
Sandals Royal Hicacos Resort Spa
Royal Hicacos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing