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“July 2012 trip ~ best in varadero”
Review of Iberostar Varadero

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Iberostar Varadero
Ranked #3 of 65 Hotels in Varadero
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“July 2012 trip ~ best in varadero”
Reviewed December 26, 2012

Travelled during the first week of July with wife and 3 yo daughter. This is our third trip to this resort. Check in was busy but we were able to get this done and in our room within 20-25 mins. No problems, just quite a few groups on our flight were also staying here. Front desk were quite friendly, we also booked our a la cartes at this time. The rooms are quite nice, especially by cuban standards. There is a shower and separate bath, flat screen tv, safe, umbrellas, robes, slippers in the room. You need to remember that staying in cuba is not like being in the dominican, or mexico. Unfortunately cuban ratings are a little high compared to dominican, ie 5starcuba = 4 star dominican.with that being said, the ib varadero is one of the best resorts in varadero imo. We stayed at paradisus in the past. I would rate ib a little better due to newer rooms, amenities, food would be comparable. The depth of beach at paradisus is longer. Staff at ib are very friendly in all areas, ie restaurants, aanimation staff, front desk. If they do not understand english well, they will try to accommodate you by trying to get someone to help translate. So you may think they are ignoring you, they are most likely trying o figure out what you want. Food was good, there was always something to eat. Breakfast wa s pretty standard, assorted fruit and juices, eggs, toast, cereal, pancakes. I didn't like the bacon, but that could be said for every resort in varadero that i have stayed. Lunches were at the restaurant, a variety of pizza, pasta, cold cuts, cheese, fish, meat - pork chops, burgers, hot dogs, etc. I wasnt overly impressed with the beach bbq hut. Also another restaurant for lunch and afternoon snacks near the pool where they had roast chicken, burgers,hot dogs, salads, pasta. Not bad, pop machine and bar. It was renovated recently but just didnt do it for me. Dinner in the main restaurant had a variety of choices, roast turkey, pork roasts, chicken, pizzas, pastas, fish,veggies, etc. Lots of desserts, cakes, ice cream, fruits. Tipping was encouraged but i did notice that most europeans refrained from tipping. It didnt seem to change much of the servers attitude towards diners ( tip or not) which is a good thing. The kids show - minidisco was every night at 8. Kids were put through a 1/2 hour of dancing which was pretty well organized. During the day there is a kids centre near the pools where kids could do activities. The beach is nice but can be a little rocky depending where you are. Beach has short depth so when waves were in, our beach chairs were getting soaked. It looks like they were planning an excavation project to lengthen the beach. Very hot weather during our stay. Overall a nice trip, but as i have mentioned, this is cuba so do not expect north american type standards. It is what it is and enjoy your trip. There is a duty free shop at the airport after customs. Otherwise, if you buy booze prior to customs, you would need to pack youe booze in your check in luggage. Funny thing, during our previous trip we were allowed to bring bottles of water and pop through our customs inspection, this time, they took all liquids from passengers including cosmetics, perfumes etc. Needless to say, there were a lot of angry and upset female travellers returning home and a few female cuban custom agents with new make up bags and fragrances; it is what it is.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Vince N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear Vince N, On behalf of all our staff we take this opportunity to thank you and your family for choosing Iberostar Varadero for the 3rd time! We are glad to know that you have enjoyed our services and facilities like in previous vacations. The beach was improved in October and we hope that the cold fronts of this coming season do not spoil the amazing beach area we have now. We are looking forward to welcome you all soon. Best regards, Quality Manager Cuba
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English first
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed December 26, 2012

Hello,
We felt we should express out thoughts on our holiday spent at Iberostar Varadero based on suggestions made on tripadvisor.
We spent 8 nights at the hotel and I would honestly agree that this hotel is one of the best. It was our first time traveling to Cuba and I have to say that we liked the food, service, cleanliness and staff. We would recommend that people take a chance and try it for themselves.

Happy holidays!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Sheba2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear Sheba2012, Thank you for your recommendation to other readers and for sharing your experience with them. It is a pleasure to know that you have enjoy your stay with us. We hope we can welcome you back again. Happy holidays from all of us at Iberostar Varadero. Quality Manager Cuba
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed December 24, 2012

Couldn't have asked more from a hotel. Everything was first class, beyond expectations. The selection at the buffet was breath-taking at every meal. The mini bar in the room was refilled daily, free of charge. The staff were all extremely pleasant and courteous. Very tasty barbecue on the beach. In fact,food was 24/7. Also the evening shows were very entertaining. Cocktails were the real thing, not watered down versions.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Beverley B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 30, 2012
Dear BeverleyBo, On behalf of all our staff we take this opportunity to thank you for choosing our hotel Iberostar Varadero for your vacations. We are happy to know that you have enjoyed our services and that our staff was pleasant and courteous with you, that is for us what makes the difference. We hope we can welcome you back some day. Best regards and Happy New Year. Quality Manager Cuba.
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Toronto
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed December 23, 2012

We stayed at the hotel the last week of Nov'12. Overall we both loved this hotel. This was my 12th time to Cuba and have stayed in Varadero 4 other times. I liked this hotel best out of all my times in Cuba.
Our room was great. Block 16 room 1646 we had a great view of the beach and ocean. Right beside us is a new splash pool for kids. The beds and pillows were very comfortabe. We had a regular room that was plenty big enough for 2 friends to share.
The staff at this hotel is great!! Everyone is very friendly and helpful. A special shout out to Hot Chocolate. We had a great time singing kareoke with him one rainy morning. He was always friendly and he worked such long hours. All day and he was at the disco every night until closing.
The pool is nice but cold! We stayed mainly at the beach. Never had a problem getting a chair even at 10:30, there was a man there to get us chairs. Drink service was great, never had to get up and get our own drinks. The beach did have a lot of shells and rocks in it. Right by the water was better.
Went to 2 speciallty restaurants, mediterean and Japanese. Meditarean was not very good. Lobster was over cooked and the steak was tough. The Japanese was better and the show was fun. The buffet had a lot of choices. I did get some food poisoning on my 4th day there. It lasted for a whole week. Luckily I brought medicine with me and was able to deal with the poisoning. I would have given the hotel 5 stars if it wasn't for the poisoning.
The shows were really good, especially when compared with other resorts I have been to.
The disco was lively, but they did play the same music every night. By the end of the week I had enough of the disco.We wend into town one night to a local club and it was a lot of fun. There was a good mix of locals and tourists.
One suggestion I have for the management is to have a bar open 24hours. Sometimes you want to have a drink late at night and the only option was the disco and that closed at 2.
Overall we had a good time and we both agreed that we would go back to this resort.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank sunlover92
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear sunlover92, On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing Iberostar Varadero for the 4th time, it is a pleasure to know that you enjoy our services and specially our staff attention. I will forward your nice words to all our staff, specially to Hot Chocolate. I will also, forward your review to our Executive chef, we will look into your suggestions and comments regarding his area. We hope that your next visit is soon, we will looking forward to welcome you both back. Best regards and Happy holidays from all of us. Quality Manager Cuba
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1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 23, 2012 via mobile

My wife and I travelled with our 2 children age 5 and 10 months. If your looking for an above average, way above, family vacation this is the spot. The staff just love kids. The kids club we were unsure of, as would any parent. But after the first day we had no problem letting our 5 yr old go all day long. She loved it. The staff at the kids club actually do love children and you can tell. She misses it a lot. :(

ALL of the staff, and I do mean all of the staff, were so friendly and always smiling. The entertainment was awesome, for both adults and children. Gardeners chopping the tops of fresh coconuts as well as making amazing woven birds from the leafs that they pick up every morning. The grounds are absolutely spotless. Big thanks to Jose the groundskeeper, he was so nice and genuine. And for the cleaning ladies who folded numerous towel art, amazing. They even made miniature towel art for our baby. All the staff works long hours, it's amazing that they can stay so very happy.

Check in: took all of 5 minutes.......and I was almost last in line from our bus. Usually they keep the passports and get them back to you, typical in Cuba, but I had mine back in my hand seconds after showing them. It's not easy checking in an entire bus load of people but they made it look easy. Bags waiting at your room when we arrived. Perfect.

The beach.......perfect. I've never been to a beach where you can find so many seashells. They have recently widened it and it was perfect white sand and blue water. No problem getting beach chairs, they had staff lay them out for you and sweep off any sand. Drinks were perfect and most times served to you without even asking. It's always nice when the bartenders and waiters know your drinks....and it took them less than a day to remember. It shows they actually pay attention.....and it didn't cost you a tip to jog his or her memory. Nice touch.

I've read before we went how the food was not good and left without ice. I didn't see this. We didn't even go to any a la carte restaurants as the buffet was great. Fresh pasta, fresh seafood, lobster tail, salsa, plenty of sliced meats, fresh fruit.....you name it and it was there. I personally loved all the seafood. And for those who have read comments that the food is tasteless the couldn't be more wrong. Staff in restaurants were good, very accommodating.

The pool area: so clean. I've read complaints about how hard it was to get a poolside bed/chair. Not true. We went at different times to the pool area and NEVER had a problem. Poolside entertainment was great. Always kept me laughing.

We met a very nice family from Ontario who have two children around 5 yrs of age. They told me they have been there 5 times before, amazing. It says a great deal about this resort and if I return to Cuba I will without a doubt come back to iberostar. It's the type of resort you don't have to worry about your children and can still have adult fun, why wouldn't I return?

If your looking for a resort that is party party party.....keg stands......loud obnoxious young adults then don't come here! If your looking for a truly relaxing vacation, family or otherwise then this is your spot. I literally only left the resort 2 times, once to scuba and once for dolphins. There was no need to leave, great food, great people and a fantastic 5 star resort. What more can you ask for on a vacation? Any chance of Cuba becoming a canadian province? you have my vote!

Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
13 Thank Jake S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear Jake S, On behalf of all our staff and Management team, we appreciate your comments and recommendations on TripAdvisor, it is a pleasure for us to know that we were able to provide you and your family with the service you expected. You have experience so much of what we offer and for your words we can see that our staff did a great job, I will pass along your review to all our departments. We hope we can welcome all of you back soon. Best regards and happy holidays! Quality manager Cuba
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Inveresk, near Edinburgh Scotland
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed December 23, 2012

Just completed a 2 week stay on the 20th December.
Rooms very large-do bear in mind that the best you will get is a partial view of the sea from nd floor rooms. We upgraded to a Junior Suite to get this view-Block 17-would definitely recommend!
Think Block 20 is the best situated of all.
Grounds beautifully kept and beach idyllic ith powdery sand and turquoise blue sea.
Buffet food excellent, with a huge choice and some food cooked to order.
However-we and other guests we spoke to all had had problems (which I reported) with all three of the speciality restaurants. The tummy upset rate was 50%. . Don`t know if anything at all has been done about this.
Special thanks to all staff who went out of their way to make our holiday great-to Victor of Entertainments and his Team, Mabel and her team in the Restaurant-easpecially Yisel and her colleaugues at the Tennis Court end!

Room Tip: Block 20 seems to be the best. Choose 17 if you are prepared to pay for a Junior Suite.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank DavidAlves
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear DavidAlves, Thank you for your review and for choosing Iberostar Varadero for your vacations. I will forward your review to all our staff, specially Mabel, Victor, Yisel and all their colleagues. On behalf of our Management team, I want to express our gratitude for reporting your tummy upset, it is very important that guests do this when they travel as this reports may help the Management and Kitchen staff to prevent mayor problems. In this case, I can confirm to you that the few reports we had during this month were not relate to eahc other and all our testing and readings of the food came out between the standards of health require by local Health Authorities. Once again, thank you for taking the time to report this to us during your stay, we do have a Doctor available on site to assist our guests. We hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back some day. Our best wishes for this season from all our staff. Quality Manager Cuba.
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed December 21, 2012

We just spent ten nights at Iberostar Varadero and could not be happier with our choice. We read many reviews of the resort on tripadvisor.ca before booking. We are pretty easy going people but not afraid to note if something is not great. Don't be bothered by those few scathing reviews of this resort. Those types of people would find fault anywhere. Focus on the big picture and the overall rating, it speaks for itself.

We were very happy with the accommodation here and the staff were very friendly throughout our time There. The drink service by the pool and at the beach was great and always available. I am pregnant so I stuck with the non alcoholic versions of the fun drinks (which they always got right and served alcohol-free) and my husband enjoyed his mojitos and other drinks always with the premium rum or liquor if he asked for it.

We did try the Mediterranean and International a la carte options and can honestly say "stick to the buffet". I am more of a pasta dish kind of person and my husband always opts for the meaty dishes and neither of us was all that impressed. At the Mediterranean restaurant I ordered shrimps and fettuccine in a cream sauce and I got three shrimps with spaghetti and the sauce was the lobster bisque that we had just had as the appetizer soup poured over it. Not good. For this reason we passed on the Japanese restaurant so I cannot comment on that.

We were very happy with the room. It was clean and as requested. I had asked for a second or third floor room with one king bed rather than two queens or doubles and that is just what we got. We were in building 15 and did not find it to be more than a 3-5 minute walk anywhere. We arrived at 11:00am and planned on having to wait until the noted check in of 3:00pm to get into our room but they checked us in quickly and efficiently and whisked us right off to our room early, at no extra charge. I might add that we also had an ocean view room, at no extra charge. We were there from December 7th to the 17th and I would say the resort seemed to be at around 80% capacity, just a guess.

As for getting a chair at the buffet, pool beach or elsewhere, no problem. There are plenty of areas to sit and relax and enjoy a drink or two. The shows were well done and well attended.

We noticed many activities taking place every day too but we were more into just relaxing, swimming and reading on our own. As for the demographic, it was a good mix of all ages. There were children and teenagers but not a huge number of either. I would definitely say this resort is very family friendly and we plan to come back in 2013 with our new addition as well as some other family members. Right outside of block 15 there is a brand new children's splash pad play area being built that I expect will be up and running by Christmas. It looks like it will be a lot of fun for the kids. There were also many couples young and older and some groups of young singles there to have a good time. I would say if you are single and looking for a party place, this one is possibly a little more mellow than you may be looking for. We saw at least four or five wedding parties while we were there and I would say this is a nice place to tie the knot!

I hope this review is helpful and would say if you opt to visit Iberostar Varadero you will not be disappointed.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Kristy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QualityManagerCuba, Quality Manager Cuba at Iberostar Varadero, responded to this review, December 28, 2012
Dear Kristy W, Thank you for your review and comments regarding your stay with us. We are glad to know that you and your husband were not dissapointed with your choice, on the contrary. It is a pleasure for us as part of the Management team to read nice words regarding the staff efforts, I will pass along your review to them. I take this opportunity to thank you for sharing your suggestion regarding the 2 a la carte restaurants you have tried during your stay, our executive Chef had recieved a copy of your words in order to supervise closely the service provided in both restaurants. Once again, thank you for sharing your experience with other readers, and we will be looking forward to welcome you back soon. Best wishes from Varadero. Quality Manager Cuba.
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Additional Information about Iberostar Varadero

Property: Iberostar Varadero
Address: Carretera Las Morlas km 17,5 | Sector Punta Hicacos, Varadero 42200, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Varadero
#1 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#2 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
#4 Business Hotel in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Iberostar Varadero 5*
Number of rooms: 386
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Directly on the beach of Varadero. Iberostar's first 5 star hotel in Cuba. Luxury and comfort in an elegant atmosphere. Top gastronomy and excellent service. Equipped for every kind of meeting, gala dinner, party, etc.. Ideal for groups & incentives. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Iberostar Varadero Hotel Varadero
Iberostar Cuba
Iberostar Varadero Cuba
Varadero Iberostar

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