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“AWESOME VACATION”

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Memories Varadero Beach Resort
Ranked #32 of 63 Hotels in Varadero
Lively, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“AWESOME VACATION”
Reviewed January 15, 2013

First of all I would like to say that I have read many of the reviews and have just came back from spending a week at Memories (January 6-13). I can honestly say that there is nothing wrong with this hotel. Many people have complained about towels, things wrong with their rooms, long check in lines....really is this going to make a bad vacation! I travelled with my husband, two children (11 and 14) and my 65 year old mother. We all had a blast.

The food at the main buffet was not the greatest but we still found things to eat. There are 3 other restaurants for breakfast, 4 other restaurants to eat at for lunch and for supper you can attend an "a la carte" or one of the two snack bars. I travelled with 2 very picky eaters and they both found something they liked at each meal.

The lines may be long, but what can you expect when the resort may have over 1,000 guests at any given time. The resort is very big and yes the walk to the beach from the lobby is about 10 minutes, bring good walking sandals.

We took the bus to Varadero and drove by many of the other hotels along the way, they looked pretty grungy. Some of the hotels that indicated were a 4-star, did not even come close to looking like they met the standards of Memories.

Many people complained that the pools and bathrooms were dirty - I saw both cleaned every single morning, but it is the hotel guests that dont respect the place and leave it dirty. At the end of the day the beach is littered with plastic cups, even though there are signs posted not to litter and garbage pails along the beach. It is because of the hotel guests that the grounds are dirty, the staff try hard to keep up.

We had a room that faced the gardens on the outside of the hotel, we regularly saw security walking along the perimeter of the hotel (all hours of the night). I felt very safe there.

Other people expressed an opinion that the walkways were not well lit at night, this may be "sort of" true, but you could always see where you were going. If you think this may be an issue for you, bring a flashlight.

One of the reviews underneath this one indicated "We were supposed to receive 2 ala carte reservations and didn't even try after we heard other people say there were no spots available." Really, you are going to complain about that---they didn't even try to book a reservation, just took someone else's word. If you want to make sure you get your reservations with the ala carts you want, then book them as soon as you get there.

Some people just like to complain and therefore I suggest that you take the bad reviews with a "grain of salt" before letting them sway your decision on whether or not to stay at this hotel. I definitely would return to Memories. I thought that this resort was great value for the price I paid.

Room Tip: We stayed in block 26 - close to the quiet pool, lobby and main buffet.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
39 Thank Tanya C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Whitby, Ontario, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2013

We just returned from a one week stay at the Memories Varadero. We were a group of 17, 10 adults and 7 children. We were so excited as we were going there to celebrate my parents 40th wedding anniversary and celebrate their vow renewal. Over all we as a family had a wonderful time because we made the best of it, however, I would not ever recommend the resort.

So many promises made were never kept. My parents were to receive an upgraded room, "based on availability". That phrase seemed to be the most famous words of the week. We paid $490 for a vow renewal package, where the Riu offered it for free (so it was dumb on our part). There were never any clean towels at the pool. We arrived Monday and finally got clean towels for the beach/pool on Friday. Yes, Friday. Our trip turned around mid week as we became friends with some staff in the main buffet restaurant.

Disappointed that the brochure states 3 a la carte reservations, but then they tell you you only get 2 as the resort is too busy. We only got one at the the Mediterranean Grill which was a waste of time seeing that the lunch buffet had more selection.

Then don't even get me started on the loud, disrespectful drunks at all hours of the morning. I didn't get one good sleep because I was too busy yelling outside my door stating my kids were trying to sleep, too busy calling security asking them to do something about the noise. This is supposed to be a family resort. Separate the young kids there to party in different bungalows. Don't mix them with families, not a good idea. Then not to mention the soft porn shows around the "kid pool". Staff never spoke up, we had to remind them that there were children around.

The food wasn't as horrible as I thought it would be, it just got so boring because we always ate at the buffet. I will spend more money next time and visit the Dominican or Mexico, I don't foresee my family ever returning to Cuba again.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank MLC_7311
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Whitby,ONT
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2013

We travelled to this resort from Jan 3-10, 2013 with our 2 kids (9 & 12). Overall we really enjoyed this resort. The rooms were not great but the beds were comfortable (but small), we had clean towels, and the mini bar was always taken care of. The resort is big but not huge - walking around is not a problem. We were in the 23 block so we were pretty central to the entire resort. The buffet food was good, the snack bar food was great (service was slow and it took a while to get food but it was very good).

My only real complaint was the ill-lit walkways at night and the carts with no lights on...it's a wonder they haven't seriously hurt someone as you do have to move out of the way.

The beach is spectacular. We found beautiful shells and had a great time swimming and playing in the ocean.

We went to several of evening shows, the water ballet was definately the best.

The a-la-cartes are just ok..nothing special about the food except for the Japanese Restaurant - the show is great and the food was excellent..even the kids loved it (and they are super picky).

The Catamaran trip was out of this world!! I would suggest you bring your own snorkle and mask especially if you have kids, my son's mask did not fit well and it was hard to adjust but he still had a blast on the reef...the dolphin encounter was unbelievable - pay the guy $10CUC and he will let you hold the fin and go for a ride, Cayo Blanco was the most beautiful white sand beach I have ever seen and the lobster lunch was very good.

Don't bring US money!!! The workers cannot exchange it, they don't want it...you need to convert your CDN dollars to CUC (convertable cuban curency) - it can be done at the airport, the hotel or in town. The staff don't ask for tips but we did tip anyway and our service was great.

Overall, I felt that this resort was a good value for the $$ we spent. Our first trip to Cuba was a huge success and we would not hesitate to go back!!

Room Tip: Central rooms are best...we were in the 23 block - near the activity pool, quite pool and theater...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
13 Thank newfiegirl02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sherwood park
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed January 13, 2013

We just got back from Memories this morning and thought I would have a look at the reviews on Trip Advisor. I always do this to see how close they are to the truth. Honestly, the recent reviews (January 2013 to Jan 14) are very true.

The resort is run down a bit, even though it is only 5 years old. You can feel the springs in the bed mattress. The staff are super nice and work incredibly hard, but I think the management company (i.e. Memories) is skimping on costs a lot. Staff can't deliver what they don't have.

The food was marginal, even for Cuba. Many of the details are already described in recent reviews on Trip Advisor. Also, the resort was filled with young families and small children, more than I have seen in any other resort anywhere. This is likely due to the lower cost, which is why we went, but I would not go back. Truth is you have to go 5 star in Cuba.

The people are not exagerating, Memories Veradero was marginal at best. 3-stars, honestly.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
14 Thank Vince B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wellington, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed January 13, 2013

Just returned from Memories Varadero January 11 and what a complete disaster. We had upgraded to Diamond Club (not worth it) . our trip was for 5 days.
- we were supposed to receive 4 a la carte - recieved 2
- left room at 8 in morning, returned at 4 only to find room not cleaned, finally was cleaned around 5:30, but were left 4 hand towels (this happened twice)
- mini bar never restocked - has to purchase water
- i expected normal 'caribean hotel' buffet, but this was worse than could ever be imagined.meats never cooked, salads full of bugs and hair,
-walked into bathroom in main lobby and found maid with 'bag of pills'
-no security
-service level was terrible, went to one eating area opened at night to be tossed hotdogs from other side of table, nothing about would you like a fork, some water, waiter was to busy to get back to talking with friends (maybe they do not realize some people understand and speak spanish too)
-diamond club bar, asked for kahlua, when poured looked like brown water (we all know they water down the drinks) but when asked jokingly, they denied, again maybe staff should be told that some people understand and speak spanish
- was approached by waitress if i would give her my sunglasses, i could go on.....

Only thing that made our trip enjoyable
-entertainment staff - very good and very professional
- bar ranchon, yaniris and her partner were excellent, provided the kind of service that we expected, always smiling and went out of their way to try and accomodate.
-diamond club rep (leonardis ???) tried to hard, consently around hotel, asking people to leave diamond section on beach, would always find you during the day, for a small talk, 'hello my friends' etc.... only wish everyone at the resort was this helpful.

would not recommend this resort to anyone, especially anyone with children, too many drunks, no security, not clean and does not give a safe feeling. Resort has potential, but needs more supervisers etc, save your money and go to the DOMINICAN. will be contacting Sunwing.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Adele P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed January 12, 2013

We went to this resort with high expectations considering the cost and were very disappointed with the entire experience. If you are looking for a quiet, convenient, relaxed vacation, this is not the place to go. This was our second trip to Cuba, and it turned out to be a vacation I will not forget- which in this case is not a good thing. First of all, we were greeted at the resort by less than friendly staff who were not at all interested in helping. When we finally arrived at our room, we were once again disappointed as the room we were in had two twin beds instead of a king size bed as we had requested. We asked the bell boy (who we had tipped a more than decent amount) if they could do something about this mistake and he simply said "I am just a bell boy" and made no attempts to get this sorted out. The only suggestion he gave us was to "push the beds together", yet the beds were bolted to the wall. In the morning we went to inform the front desk about this error and they said that we could come back the next day to see if there was a different room, because they didn't have anything at the time. The next issue came to any place on the resort grounds that said it would be open at specific times - don't believe it. The currency exchange in the main lobby was supposed to be open all day, but that was another lie. We waited in line to change our money for nearly an hour, only to get to the front of the line and the lady to rudely say that she is on lunch... so we went other places (such as the exchange outside that was supposed to be open from 9-9 and was ALSO CLOSED) and then came back in only to find it still closed (this was an hour and a half later...) When we finally got money, they conveniently didn't have single peso bills and gave us a pocket full of coins.
When it came to food, there was a wait of at least 40 minutes to get into the buffet for meals, and once you got in there, there was hardly any food left that did not seem to get refilled. I think this resort was grossly over-booked and under-staffed and they just could not keep up. Staff was not friendly and would often avoid eye contact so they wouldn't have to refill drinks, remove plates, etc. Food here was lackluster, disappointing and repetative. We were supposed to be able to get a la carte meals, but there were no openings at any because they are so crowed and jam packed in this resort. Another disappointment.

At the 24/7 snack bar, we were among one of four tables occupied in the place, ordered a cervesa and a water and waited 40 minutes to get it (that includes asking our server and others approximately 3 or more times). When we finally got what we had asked for, we also ordered a hamburger because I guess that was all that they had at the time (regardless of what the menu promised) and got a 2 inch diameter burger between two slices of bread. No ketchup, so don't bother asking (even though there was some on all of the tables just the night before).

Walking back to our room one afternoon, just a foot off the path, was one of the workers of the resort, unzipping his pants to urinate right off the path right in front of us. Appalling. We did not say anything to the staff (because what is the point when they do not do anything for you when you talk to them anyway and we were on our way out that day). Talk about cleanliness and great customer service.

I am not usually a complainer and will take everything as it comes, but after spending an arm and a leg to go on this trip, we expected to be treated like people and with some respect. After a couple of days in this unsatisfactory resort, we asked our sunwing representative to be transferred to the resort we stayed at last year, and could not be happier to leave Memories.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Lovethesun0901
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Olds, Alberta, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed January 12, 2013

We went to this resort with high hopes and were nothing but disappointed The resort itself was great, but understaffed or overpopulated. We had to wait in line to get into the buffet and if you weren't near the front of the line you did even more waiting for food to maybe be replenished. We were supposed to receive 2 ala carte reservations and didn't even try after we heard other people say there were no spots available. We had requested a king size bed and got a room with 2 twins. We were told that there was nothing available and to push the beds together but they were bolted to the wall. We waited 40 minutes at the one snack bar to get a beer and a glass of water. There were 2 money exchanges on site and both were a failure. One took five trips to actually find open; the other we waited in line for an hour then the lady went on lunch for an hour and a half. Neither of the locations had one peso bills. After repeated disappointments we contacted our sun-wing rep and thankfully they transferred us to Melia Las Antillas. Go there!!!!

Room Tip: Go to a different resort such as Melia Las Antillas
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
15 Thank BPL1986
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Memories Varadero Beach Resort

Property: Memories Varadero Beach Resort
Address: Autopista Sur, km 18,5 Parque Natural | Punta Hicacos, Varadero 42200, 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) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#23 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#25 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#26 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Memories Varadero Beach Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 1035
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pamper yourself on the pristine white sand beaches of Varadero, Cuba with a stay at the luxury Memories Varadero Beach Resort. The resort offers incredible value and impressive all inclusive features and is the perfect destination for a romantic getaway or a fun family vacation. Guests will be dazzled by the elegant rooms and suites that feature rich wood furnishings, luxurious amenities, and stunning décor. Relish a culinary trip around the world at the buffet restaurant and several à la carte restaurants, which offer sumptuous global cuisine, including Italian, Japanese, Mexican, and more. Spend your days basking under a golden sun on one of Varadero’s most beautiful beaches, or revel in an array of fun land and water sports and activities. Children will also have the time of their lives at the Kids Club and Baby Club with supervised games and activities. Memories Varadero Beach Resort ensures fun for all ages and helps create unforgettable vacation memories for the whole family. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sirenis La Salina Varadero Beach Hotel Varadero

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