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“Great Experience at The Blau”

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Blau Varadero Hotel Cuba
Ranked #4 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Great Experience at The Blau”
Reviewed May 16, 2009

We stayed at the Blau, May 4 - 11. We were part of a large group of extended family, 25 in total, covering 4 generations. Lots of young children including a 6 month old baby.

We spent a lot of time reviewing different resorts to find the right one to suit our needs and budget. The Blau proved to be exactly what we expected.

We have been to Cuba 3 times previously, including the same large group in 2006 when we stayed at Iberostar Varadero. That was an excellent experience also, but considerably more expensive.

We chose the Blau based on our needs and the positive reviews from other travellers who posted on trip advisor.

Some in our group have visited Cuba 10 times previously, so we were well versed when it came to such things as food quality. This obviously is not as much an issue for us as some who post reviews here. All I can say to those people is that the food quality in Cuba is well documented on this site and elsewhere, so there should be no surprises!!!!!!! We found the food to be varied and plentiful and of the same quality we have come to expect in Cuba. Nothing more, nothing less. Co-incidentaly, no one in our large group suffered from any kind of upset stomach while at the Blau.

As we had some elderly people in our group, including one using a wheelchair, we wanted a resort which was compact and not as spread out as most resorts are in Varadero. The Blau was an excellent choice in this regard, with just a short walk to the pool area and beyond to the fantastic beach. All areas were easily accesible for the wheelchair, including the short boardwalk to the beach.

The hotel itself is very well run by excellent staff, who go out of their way to ensure your stay is a pleasant one, wether you tipped them or not. We did tip periodically and handed out clothing and toiletries we brought with us, which seemed to be highly appreciated. The rooms are clean and spacious, with excellent views from large balconies. The bathroom was spacious and clean with excellent water pressure in the shower. Very refreshing....The pool side or rear of the hotel has excellent views of the pool and ocean, which get better, the higher your room is located. We were in room 530 which is at the centre of the hotel overlooking the pool. The benefit of staying on a lower floor is that you can avoid using the elevators if you wish. They are not nearly as slow as some would have you believe on this site. Remember, you are on vacation..... It is not a race.... No one is timing you......

The beach and pool were fantastic with lots of cabanas and comfortable loungers available at both. There is no need to set your alarm-clock early to reserve seats. There is more than enough for all. Even when you consider this hotel runs at near full capacity all the time. The water temperature was perfect in the pool. I read reviews in January and February complaining that the water was too cold. Well, not this time of year, where the daily temperature is around 30+ degrees.

The evening entertainment is ok. Although we were more inclined to enjoy the company of our group around the lobby bar area after dinner. With so many young children, we were very happy that their was no loud partying going on in the early hours and were rarely disturbed at night. The beach bar was far away enough from the main hotel for those that wanted to party and not disturb those that did not.... A perfect balance in my opinion. As has previously been written this is not a true party resort, which is exactly why we picked it. I saw no bad behaviour here and am unsure what the previous English contributor was talking about regarding rowdy Canadians...... Maybe it was my 4 and 8 year olds!!!!!!! If so, please accept my apologies - they have been spoken too.....

I cannot comment for our whole group, however I heard very few complaints from them and plenty of compliments regarding our stay, so I would recommend this resort for most age groups looking for a relaxed, clean, well run and quite resort. You won't be disappointed if you keep your expectations realistic.

A last word for anyone taking young children here. The hotel staff went out of their way to make our children feel as welcome as the adults. None more so than Myra who runs the kids club. She is fantastic with the children, even coming down to the beach to play with them, when we did not bring them to the very well appointed kids club. The club includes a seperate air-conditioned building (A great break from the blazing afternoon sun for the young ones), an outdoor play area and even their own small pool. Myra is truly a dedicated staff member and obviously loves children. The kids club caters to children 4 to 12 years of age. Our oldest was not terribly keen to check it out initially, but after spending a short time there with Myra, she quickly changed her mind. This is not just a baby-sitting service. Myra is more like a teacher, using crafts and history as just a few of her tools to engage the children.

If you decide on this hotel after doing your homework, you will not be disappointed.

Enjoy.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
11 Thank cdnbrit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Toronto
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed May 16, 2009

I was at the Blau for a week and it was a wonderful vacation.
We left on Sunwing Flight very early in the morning ..flight was ontime, they served a warm breakfast with a snack later on, also champayne and a hot towel was provided.

Arrived in Varadero, and was tht hotel around 10.30am. They upgraded us to an Ocean View room on the sixth floor- excellent view!!!! Balcony was huge with a towel rack .
Room was very clean and comfortable..had a king size bed that was comfortable.bathroom was huge with 2 toilets, tub and lots of counter space. closet and shelves for clothes. Safe also provided.
Loved the lobby bar ..hung out there at nights. The beach bar and poll bars were also great. Got my coffee every morning at the pool bar..great coffee. Coffee at the buffet was not good.
Resturants were not bad..food was a bit bland but there was always something to choose from...lots of fish.

So if I had to pick one thing didn't like it would be that the hotel was dead after the night shows..around 11.30at night. But by then we were ready to go to bed anyway..:)

Had a fantastic time ! I would recommend the Havana trip! We loved it!
This hotel is a great value for the price. I would certainly recommend this hotel. Spoke to some other people at the airport on the way back and a lot of them did not like thier hotels..so i am quite pleased with the Blau!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank holiday13Toronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed May 14, 2009

Came with a large group for a wedding at the resort. The staff were great and wore many hats when it came to customer service. The beauty of the hotel, pool, bar and eating areas make this a definite 4 star. The food is different, but good. The whole idea of a vacation is to leave your crabby self at home and come to relax! I would recommend this resort for first timers, because it won't dissappoint. The previous post about "noisy Canadians" is a little over the top. Not something required on tripadvisor... Considering that 75% of the occupants of the resort were Canadians. This was a great place, with great staff, beautiful beaches and memories to be made.

  • Stayed May 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank jkhammy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax
Level Contributor
80 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
Reviewed May 14, 2009

Spent a week in May at the Blau Varadero with daughter, son in law, our 20 month old grandaughter and a friend. We were very pleased with the resort, it is very clean and the staff are super friendly.
The food was very good by Cuba standards and this resort would certainly be considered a 4 star by Cuban standards. I have travelled to Cuba over 20 times and have tried many different resorts. The Blau would be one of the top three. Sandals Hicacos would be first and Paradesis Varadero would be second. They don't allow children at Sandals. The Blau has two speciality restaurants and both were very good. The beach is beautiful and I was worried as people had remarked on it being narrow but that wasn't the case there was lots of beach and plenty of loungers and huts.
There is not a lot of night life so if you want to party I would recommend the Barcello Solymar which is closer to Varadero and attracts a younger crowd.
This resort is only 5 years old and is one of the newest in Varadero. I would certainly return and would recommend this resort to others.
Definitely take an insulated mug! Don't worry about bugs as there are none.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank KDP_Hfx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
78 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed May 12, 2009

We have just returned from this hotel after a relaxing stay of two weeks,the staff are very friendly so tip them and you will get even better service. The beach is wonderful, one of the best in the world in our opinion and is a better option than the pool which was nice but overun with noisy Canadians all the time we were there, some were very loud and rude and the language left a bit to be desired. (we have been to Canada and not encountered this problem there), and, we observed a practice from many years ago....towels on sunbeds with no one on them ( we went on a trip which forced us to be out be 6am one morning and we observed a woman take a towel to the pool area and reserve a sunbed and it was only just getting light!!) The brochures advise that long trousers and collered shirts are a requirement for dinner...NOT SO.. we observed shorts , tee shirts and swimming shorts the WHOLE fortnight and not a word was said to the offenders despite a restuarant manager being in situ and a large notice on the door! Neither the guest relations or receiption were interested ..so.. forget the dressing up for dinner as you will be the odd ones out! also, If you do not smoke you will have a problem, smoking is allowed everywhere except the main restaurant in the hotel itself, everywhere there was smoke, it smelled like a large ash tray at times. On the whole it is a great hotel although having travelled the world and stayed in 3,4 and 5 star establishments I would class this as as a 3.5 star. As previously stated the staff were very nice and went out of their way to assist you. The food was superb, you will read many complaints about the food but we always found something to eat and the variety included smoked salmon,crab , lobster beef, pork .....you name it they had it at some point. They must ban smoking from the restaurants ( international and cuban) at least as these two offer a lovely ambience with great food. The trip to Havana and the show is an absolute must

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
7 Thank holidaymad8449
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, QC
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed May 11, 2009

I stayed at the Blau Varadero from 1st to 8th of May and I loved it even if I went by myself!

Check in was fast. The room was really nice and I had a great ocean view from the 8th floor (even if I didn't ask for it). The room had a big king size bed, a sunny balcony and a good size bathroom, it was very clean.

The hotel is lovely and still looks new. It has a good size pool and of course a beautiful beach with clear blue water.

The food at the buffet was quite good, no complains. There is always something good, you just have to make the right pick, otherwise there is always the "make your own" pizza and pasta for dinner which is quite popular and safe.
I only went to the Palma Real A la carte restaurant and it was alright, don't expect great food though but don't go to Cuba if you want fine food because you won't find it there.

The service at the hotel is close to perfection, you get served very quickly no matter if you tip or not.
Although tiping is a plus especially once you know how much a waiter or a maid is paid. When you go to Cuba bring some old clothes, paper, pens... with you and leave them for the maid as well as your shampoo and shower gel when you leave the hotel, this kind of stuff costs a fortune for them and you're sure they will appreciate them.

I would recommand to drink as much mineral water as possible even if the water is potable it still have a funny taste. Also, as many others said bring thermos cups as it gets really hot during the day.

Now, a small part on how was my trip as a solo traveler. Well, I was actually really good, I really enjoyed it and met some very nice people (Lou and Adam I know you'll read this) but also some gruppy and annoying ones, in that case it's very easy just stick with the nice ones!!
When traveling alone you'll always meet people, maybe it will only be for a chat at the bar or maybe you'll hang out with them for a few day but don't travel alone if you can't stand doing anything by yourself because unless you go chat to people they won't come to you, you always have to do the first step. Maybe it's not the best place on Varadero for young single people but I wasn't looking for partying all week so it was perfect for me.

The entertainement isn't great really so don't expect dancing and clubbing all night, it's not the right place. It's a relaxing and quiet hotel and you should know that before you book your trip.

You should definitely go to La Havana during your trip, this city is amazing. The culture and history of this country is so captivating!

Overall, I loved this hotel and I'll definitely come back alone or this other people.

Hoped it helps all the solo travelers who are thinking of staying at the Blau.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank Lily81Montreal_QC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
beasbeas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2009

Our stay at Blau was fantastic. The service was excellent, the rooms clean and the staff very friendly. Complaints about the food on other reviews should be disregarded: the food is fine. A la carte service was outstanding. The breakfast buffet was excellent and the lunch and dinner buffets were very good.
The beaches and locations are fantastic, as is the pool. Bar service was prompt and delicious. We didn't use any of the included amenities (water sports etc) but the staff seemed eager to provide them.
Would highly recommend the catamaran and havana day trips, well worth the money.
Overall we had an excellent stay with nothing but great things to say about Blau, it's a great value!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank beasbeas
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 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#3 On the Beach 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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