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“"Spectacular Spectacular"”

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Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba
Ranked #3 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“"Spectacular Spectacular"”
Reviewed April 25, 2013

First time to Cuba, April 15 - 22nd. The Blau was recommended by our travel agent, who said it would come close to what we've experienced in Mexico. We also did our homework reading many reviews, looking at the location and layout using goggle maps, and watching youtube videos (thank you Habsfan)

Flight was 3 hours from Toronto. Customs was a little intimidating being a communist country, but went fairly smooth. Ride from airport was about 45 minutes.

We went with low expectations and were blown away! The entrance and lobby are stunning with plenty of places to lounge, some stores, and the beautiful lobby bar. There's also a piano bar for that quiet evening drink. All the staff are very friendly and accommodating.

The pool was clean and warm with plenty of loungers but you did have to mark your territory early for the best seats. A two minute walk to a spectacular beach with soft white sand and warm clear water. Again the towel game for the best seats.You could walk for miles each way. We lucked out with great weather and green flag swimming everyday with some nice waves. It did rain heavy a few times but in the evening and overnight.

The food at the main buffet (breakfast and dinner only) was very good with plenty of options. Breakfast was great with fresh made to order omelets, bacon, etc.. lunch-meat and cheese for the Euro's. Great bread, the coffee needs help, it looks so strong but taste so weak, then you add a little milk and it hardly lightens up, weird. For lunch it was the large poolside buffet or the grill hut by the pool as well. Burgers and hotdogs were okay, fries were good. Both restaurants were nice with the Mexican being our favorite. You had to pick your options at the International (Palma Real) but had a fixed menu at the Mexican. The house wines were Spanish and quite good. Great service and live music in both restaurants. They BBQ'd a whole pig one day and everyone could have a sandwich and a rum drink out of a coconut.

The drinks were good, make sure you bring a Bubba keg (insulated larger mug) and let the bartender know if you want it stronger or weaker. The cups they supply are tiny and flimsy. The bar down at the beach was open 24 hours and served grilled sandwich's.

Entertainment staff did a good job trying to keep people involved and active and had live shows every night. Overall is wasn't a loud party resort with things quieting down after 11pm.
There was a nice mix of people from all ages and nationality's, mostly Canadian's which was great. I do have to say, we did notice a lot of rude, loud, Euro's (not the Brit's) They would look at you only to look through you, not smile and say hello, also they never tipped!

We had an ocean view room on the 7th floor which was perfect to walk down the stairs (if the lifts were slow) to the main buffet which was on the third floor. Bed's were fine and the bathroom was nice. We had a few issue's with our room which were addressed right away. Make sure you get an extra key card to keep in the slot on the wall so your air will stay on while your out. We left a peso on the bed each day and the maid did a great job and left us some cool towel art and a few sweet notes (thank you Betty) Water, beer, and pop stocked each day.

We took the doubledecker bus into Varadero to do some shopping at various markets. Great way to see the town and other resorts, $5 peso's let's you ride (on and off) all day if you want.

All in all it was a great first experience in Cuba and would recommend the Blau to anyone who likes a clean, modern, well organized, smaller and quieter resort. (only 400 rooms) I heard the only reason the Blau Varadero is a 4 star is because they have only 2 restaurants. If your thinking of this resort, go for it, you won't be disappointed unless your looking for a loud party resort with mostly young people.

Room Tip: Ocean view for sure!
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank RBSolman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed April 25, 2013

Stayed her for 10 days in March 2013 - did also stay in Havana for 4 days previously (Tripp Habana). Had a great time as was here for my daughters 30th Birthday. As got to the hotel before checking in time (as did a private transfer from Havana, a must to save time from enjoying the wonderful beach). So was able to leave luggage and start the relaxing part of the holiday. Reception very helpful as only travelling with my daughter so they changed the beds to two single beds which are overly big so lovely. As this is my second time of coming to Cuba was not disappointed with the weather, people and accommodation. Found the lunch time food next to the pool was always very good (as prefer fish). The specialised restaurants are lovely. Arranged to go to the Palm Restaurant for my daughters birthday and they arranged to make a birthday cake for her together with the quartet playing Happy birthday to her nice touch. Food in evening can get same old but just try something different. The beach is gorgeous and no hassels from anyone which is lovely also. Did go on the catamaran which is a must also did the bit with the Dolphins which was ok but conveyor belt feeling. Went into main area of shopping and everything is 10 CUC's but haggle - but also remember 10 CUC is only just over £6 so please be kind. As been Cuba before brought over tubes of toothpaste for tips for the house cleaner. Also tip everyone they deserve it remember 1CUC is less than a pound. And at the end of holiday give things away that you really can live without. Becareful with the sun as I did burn my feet and I had on factor 50. Go to one of their Jazz/Salsa clubs fabulous time. Enjoy.

Room Tip: Our room was on the nine floor and in the middle of view over the sea/pool recommend
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank caza321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prince George, BC
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

Went on a family trip. Wasn't the hotel for my husband and I who are quiet people and enjoy early bedtimes and early mornings. The hotel got way too nosiy for our liking, and even though we got moved from the 1st floor (after much protest) to the 11th floor after the first night, the sound still echoed throughout the building.

Aside from that, food was acceptable, staff was friendly, pools were beautiful, and the ladies at the concierge desk were wonderfully helpful (more so than the travel agents) at helping us get tour guides set up for our group of 14 or so. Unfortunately, we were a little upset that we had a pair of bose headphones disappear on us after having to switch rooms - I guess that's Cuba, but come on people, honesty goes a long way.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank BBelle26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamilton, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

This was my second stay at the Blau and once again, it did not disappoint. I travelled with three of my girlfriends who had all been to Cuba before, but had not stayed at the Blau. They were blown away to say the least. We are still talking about our week there and how we would not change a thing!

Food: Excellent! Anybody who complains, has a serious problem. The food choices are fantastic and the quality excellent. Always hot, fresh and available.

Beach: Exquisite! Beautiful stretch of beach that is great for long walks. We were fortunate to have many calm days, so the water activities were available.

Rooms: Clean and well kept. Our room had recently been painted and it appeared that the furniture was new. The room was kept very clean with beer, pop and bottled water replenished daily in the bar fridge.

Staff: Wonderful! We did not encounter any staff that were remotely miserable. All staff served us with a smile and they were all very gracious. The manager seems to be everywhere all day long, overseeing everything. We all joked that he must have a twin, as he was there morning, noon and night!

I have been to Cuba approximately 16 times and by far the Blau Varadero is the best resort I have stayed at. I would recommend this for families, couples and like myself, a group of ladies. There is something for everyone at this resort. The entertainment staff do a fantastic job offering activities all day long, without annoying those that choose not to participate. If there is one word to describe this resort, it would be "classy".

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
4 Thank cubalover66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
José M P, General Manager at Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba, responded to this review, June 4, 2013
Dear Cubalover66,

On behalf of all of us at Blau Varadero we want to thank you for your loyalty and coming back to Blau Varadero hotel.
We really appreciate your comments. We are happy to hear that you liked our variety of food. Thank you very much for taking your time to share your experiences here.
It is a pleasure for us and our staff to know that you have enjoyed your stay with us and our services. We appreciate your time invested in writing it is very important to us to know our guests opinion.
See you soon.
Warm regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maple, Ontario
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

Fourth time with the family to the Blau and it has had many great changes since my last visit. Finally after complaining to the managers every year that the beach needed a bathroom, finally there is a really nice bathroom across from the beach bar. The chairs at the lunch buffet have been upgraded to nice and sturdy ones (the other ones were cheap and flimsy). The theme dinners have changed and the selection is even better this time around at the dinner buffet restaurant. As always the staff are amazing and we just love this place. Gorgeous beach and i would probably say the nicest one out of all the hotels on this strip. During our stay our hotel was packed and as you strolled along the beach the other hotels were near empty, guess you know where everyone stays! Jose, the new manager is doing an amazing job on upgrading this hotel . Would definitely recommend this hotel to everyone (not a party hotel for those looking for this type of place)

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank passion4travelling78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
José M P, General Manager at Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba, responded to this review, June 4, 2013
Dear Passion4travelling78,
On behalf of all of us at Blau Varadero we want to thank you for your loyalty to the staff and the services you have tried this Hotel so many times. It is a pleasure to know that you have enjoyed the changes we have made in Blau.
Thank you for the good review. We really appreciate it.
Thank you for recommending the hotel to other visitors.
We are looking forward to your next visit, soon we hope.
Best regards from your friends at Cuba.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

Once you get over the fact that you're staying in the ugliest hotel in Varadero (its size and grey concrete finish make it look like a nuclear power station on the outside and multi-story car park on the inside) - this is an EXCELLENT resort style hotel, about half way along the peninsula.
Our only slight grumbles were that if you're a sailor, you're not allowed to take the Hobie Cat's out on your own - or even helm (so effectively its just a boat trip) and as ever with 'all inclusive' buffet style catering, sometimes we found ourselves having to ask for the popular choices to be replenished - which they did. Their inclusive house wine is an acquired taste (and other imported wines expensive), but it was good to see an extensive range of branded spirits offered as part of the package deal.
Be aware that because the hotel sits on a narrow spit, all rooms have a sea view but the better views are on the 'pool/ beach/sea' side. Also, they told us there are no 'inter-connecting' family rooms, so families may find themselves spending more time in the corridor than they wish.
Also, pool and beach drinks are supplied in small plastic cups, so many guests (most were Canadians in our time there), take their own larger drinks bottles or coolers, which they'll happily fill for you.
Overall the entire operation is run to a very high standard and as a beach resort base for a week, in an amazing country, we'd recommend it without hesitation.
Enjoy.

Room Tip: Best views are pool side, higher floors
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Fairweather1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Saskatchewan, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2013

this was my seventh trip to Cuba but my first to the Blau,and by far this was the best of them all.The lobby area is well lit and very very clean,the check in was handled with a very friendly staff all with big smiles. we were put in a very nice room on the 9th floor but the beds were a little too hard, and what a nice view both from the room and from the elevator,only wish that they had one more bank of elevators,some times there was a bit of a wait but the view from inside the elevator was worth it. The dining room was well set out and the staff there was also smiling and trying to urge you to sit in their sections. The food selection was by cuba standards very good and very nicely laid out. The omlets were very good BUT the bacon tended to be very fatty,we mostly ate lunches at the pool with yummy burgers fresh off the grill. The pool resteraunt had a wide assortment and the staff there were very nice.I was the large guy wearing the pink OILERS jersey.

The pool was very refreshing IF you find a chair,it was like almost everywhere people come down very early and CLAIM loungers with a towel on it, i am an early riser and was up at 7 am almost every day and at time it was tough to find a spot for the 6 of us. The pool guy (i never found out his name) was very friendly and would ask you if you wanted a pad for your lounger,he also was extreemly good and keeping the pool area clean. The beach was most excellent BUT they need to have more shaded areas,we would go to the beach but for only short stays as it was too hot.The beach grill and bar was also nice, food was good and the people were friendly and the place was very clean. The ala cartes were very good But i think the mexican alacarte should offer you a choice to select from,they served a 5 course meal but there were no substitutions in case you didnt like any of the courses.

The animation staff were wonderful especially Rene! This dude was one of a kind,as i said before this is my 7th time in cuba and by far Rene outdid them all.THANKS!!! The evening shows were very good especially the battle of the bands,Michael Jackson was great and Shakiera was WOW.

The spa was nice and the massage was divine,an excellent deal 40 cic for 50 minutes.
The hotel grounds were well tended and looked very nice.
We took a trip to Havana by private van,what a great time we had! Havana is doing a lot of repairs so we could not get into the parliment building or into the tower in revoloution square. But what has really changed in Havana is the beggers have grown threefold. The mothers with the babies wanting money for milk , the dude with the 57 tbird want 3 cic for you to take a photo. They are becoming more agressive by grabbing your arms and saying please.

The scuba dive took us to a sunken fishing boat and a beautiful reef,the boat was great and so was the price 2 2tank dives for 70 cic,

A first for me in cuba my son (he is 33) was approached on the beach several times and was asked if he wanted to buy any cocaine or other drugs,unfortunatley he never told me until we were in the airport as i would have told security immeadiatly and i am sure they would take it very seriously.
All in all the Blau has my highest review i will definatly be returning here

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank bigfoot67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba

Property: Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba
Address: Carretera de Las Morlas | Km 15, Varadero, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Varadero
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
#3 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#4 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#5 Business Hotel in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba 4*
Number of rooms: 395
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Just on the shore of the magnificent and famous Varadero beach, the Hotel consist of a 13 floor modern building, completely new.Ideal for those who want to enjoy the beauty and the atmosphere of the most well known beach of Cuba, with the best facilities and a wide list of activities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blau Hotel Varadero
Blau Varadero Cuba

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