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“first time in Cuba”

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Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 10 Hotels in Holguin
Certificate of Excellence
Ingersoll, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“first time in Cuba”
Reviewed October 22, 2012

we've just returned from our one week at paradisus de oro. Prior to booking I researched a lot and read many comments and viewed many pictures. we decided to go with paradisus rio de oro because we were looking to truly relax with no kids around and enjoy a lauxry service. we did debate to try the royal service however decided since it is our first time and the hotel ranking is very good as it is we will go with something basic, and we never looked back! we had an amazing experience and did not feel it wasnt luxurious as it is. the hotel was at about 56% and didnt feel busy at all, very relaxing. it was quiet and the majority of people were in their later 40s 50s so if youre looking to party, get drunk it is not the place. we are both in our 20s and 30s and if you are looking for a relaxing vacation a true paradise it is a great place. there are still many young couples everyones very nice!
from our room to customer service, room service, food, spa and entertainment everything was great! no complaints at all! we've met people that it was their first time in cuba to people that traveled many places in cuba and people that just keep coming back to this resort over and over and the general impression was that we have made the best choice staying at paradisus!
we did take 2 different excursions outside to see both city of Holguin and countryside and another very informative trip to see some archiological sites native indian villages, fishermans town where we got to meet locals visit their houses and see their farms and local flea markets. truely worth it!
the spa at the resort was amazing! if you have extra money to spend and you want to relax even more that is the place to go! looks even more dreamy than the rest of the amazing resort and the massages were amazing! privet beach, amazing views, full day use of all spa facilities and a butler services was so quiet and luxurious! we even went back there for a second time!

i see people complain about some parts of the resort and restaurants being too hot but you are coming to Cuba and its hot! so nothing to complain about you make a decision to go to a hot place so it is to be expected! yes air conditioning would be nice but it did not ruin our vacation a bit! for people who consider ROYAL SERVICE, we did have a lunch during our spa day there and got to see the place. the one extra restaurant they have there was the best food but generally if you are looking to spend your money somewhere else i would not upgrade to royal service.. if you are young keep in mind the royal service was even more quiet and looked a little boring to us. no swim up bar in the pool and the pool looked too small and boring however their pool had an amazing view!

VERY important tip! to end your vacation, book a VIP lounge at the airport! it is 25pesos or 20 per person and it will be the best choice you have made! you book it with your representitive once you get to the resort for example with sunwing rep. once all buses arrive the airport it is a zoo! its hot lines are out of control to check in go through customs and we had 3 hr wait for our flight. we had priority in every aspect! it took us 5 minutes and we were done sitting in air conditioned lounge with all you can eat and drink(alcoholic drinks) best investment EVER!

on your way back keep in mind we had 1KG over weight! and we had to pay 20pesos! we probably had space in our carryon to move it around but it was a zoo at the counter so we didnt but just keep in mind coming in they will not charge you if u have one kg overweight but coming back they will!

overall 10/10 experience and we would go back! could not hope for a better vacation!

Room Tip: we were in 3511 it was one block away from the pool.. building 34 was the closest to the pool. corne...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank AlinaShane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 20, 2016
Old review, thank you
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2012

We have just returned from a two week stay at this hotel. Overall it was pretty good, although as usual the majority of the complex cannot really be described as true five star. The 'Royal Service' is however very much five star and actually almost feels like a totally seperate hotel.

We spent the first night in a standard room and to be frank it was a bit tired and gloomy, however I do think we had been given a particularly poor room as some of the other junior rooms looked much better given their orientation etc We were moved to the Royal Service for the remainder of the two weeks and I can honestly say that part of the complex is superb; the rooms are lovely, the private bar/restaurant area is very stylish with a lovely ambience and the service you receive is first class - even the cocktails are superior!!

The beaches are all very nice with the brochure pictures almost not doing them justice and overall the service and staff were great throughout and importantly (to me) sincere. The restaurants were all ok but none will be receiving a Michelin Star anytime soon! We did have a laugh in the Japanese restaurant when sat with good company. The restaurant in Royal Service was trying very hard to provide a high end dining experience and nearly acheived it with one or two dishes and again the service was really good and very professional. The Spa is also definitely worth a visit, with excellent facilities and lovely, lovely staff.

I would recomend that anyone visiting this hotel upgrades to Royal Service if possible. Upgrade when you are there and negotiate hard!!

Do not buy anything in the hotel shops unless you really have to, as we were ripped off twice and the guy made the prices up as he went along, even though we caught him out TWICE. The cigars are also three times more expensive than they are outside the complex so dont bother with those either just get a taxi into gaudalavaca and buy them from either cigar factory shop or from cigar stall at the market. Also be ready to be kept awake occasionally by the wildlife!! Flippin frogs!!!!!!

Room Tip: upgrade to RS
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank m c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 20, 2016
Old review, thank you
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doncaster
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2012

just returned from our 3rd. holiday in the Royal; Service. just like home from home!
Service- excellent, Food- excellent. As returning guests we were made to feel like royalty..Stayed in room 8624- Brilliant sea view, close to reception, great outdoor
shower.
Many thanks to Norma, Wilmer, Rey, Pedro, Carlos and all the staff for a
brilliant 2 weeks.
Entertainment could do with spicing up but did not spoil our stay.
Great hotel!!!.

Room Tip: Royal service 8426 or 9011/12 for a suite. Main hotel 3415/16 for a suite.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BDunDoncaster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 20, 2016
Old review, thank you
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed October 19, 2012

We have just returned from this hotel. We travelled on 02 October and returned on 16 October 2012. I have read a review from a couple who stayed at this hotel at the same time as us. I really can’t believe the things they have moaned about! The service was unbelievable! I have never met nicer people than the Cuban people. The waiters/waitresses couldn’t do enough for you and I was offered drinks at least four times a day when I was on my sunbed! Also, the hotel was only 50% full so I truly doubt that their rooms weren’t ready on arrival as we were the last couple off the same coach as them and we were shown to our room straight away…. After having our champagne of course!  The beach was beautiful and the service you got in all the restaurants was 10/10! We have already said that we will be returning to this hotel and would recommend this hotel to all our friends and family. I would like to thank everyone at PRDO for making our holiday so special. I really do think some people are never happy so always have to find something to moan about! We heard one lady put in a complaint about the floor in the toilet being too slippery, mind you she was dripping wet from the pool and barefoot so what did she expect! Silly women. We did have a thunderstorm about 5.00pm and we sat on our balcony in the rain and watched the lightning, it was an amazing show and the storm finished by 7.00pm so we weren’t affected by it at all. This was by far the best holiday I have ever had!!!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank GeorgiePorgie92
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 14, 2016
Old review, thank you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UNITED KINGDOM
Level Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed October 19, 2012

We have just returned from a 2 week stay. On arrival a glass of champagne, cool cloths were handed over whilst checking in and it was very efficient. Bell boys take you to your room. We were in room 3421, it was very basic, it did smell very damp when we walked in which was very off putting and lasted a couple of days . The bed was large and very comfortable, and the fridge was good but noisy in the room very handy for your bottle of water. Luckily our air conditioning was very good compared to what we heard from other people in there rooms. The bathroom definitely does need renovation, the tiles were chipped, the shower wasn't very good, my husband had to take the shower head off to clean it the water then came out better. We had problem with the toilet not flushing very well, and the bath plug did not fit. We had maintenance men in to fix it but in the end my husband again had to fix these himself, and take the cistern off . The bedroom could also do with decorating. I do agree with other reviews stating how long are you in your room but these are a few things that do need dealing with. If you really do want top notch rooms pay for the royal service they looked gorgeous.

The restaurants we used was the Mediterranean and the el patio and mainly the buffet. The food cannot be faulted it is absolutely gorgeous so much choice.

All the staff were very friendly and always smiled and had time to talk to you.

We tipped everyone from security guards, gardeners,, cleaners, all restaurant staff, sunbed staff, taxi drivers bus drivers, you name them we tipped them, they do not look for tips, it's just a gesture we like to do as we were told they all only earn £16 a month! They always were grateful for anything. I often saw the waitresses being handed items of clothing, shoes, spectacles etc for children. Razors, pencils pens books, nail varnish or any cosmetics are always welcomed gifts.

The swimming pool could definitely be resurfaced. The jacuzzi we used once as it smelt as if people had used it as a toilet and peed in it, not nice at all!

We spent most of our time on the beach as it was cooler, but I would advise to take shoes to wear in the sea as there are a lot of big rocks, only a few sandy spots.

The entertainment is ok , but to be quite honest it is too hot to sit and watch them, they really need to think about an air conditioned room for this, at least then this would give the hard working entertainers more people to watch them in cool and comfort.

If your like me and don't like huge crabs walking about in the evening this isn't the place for you, a lot of us ladies screamed when we realised our feet were being touched or crawled over by a huge crab, I hated it, even a poor waitress was being chased by one in the restaurant.

The birds are a pain in the buffet restaurants and the snack bars by the pool and beach, they do have nets up but they still get in. They were eating the cereals, bread, and anything they could get off your table. One lady was actually hit in the eye by one bird that swooped down.

I feel there ought to be more lighting at night by the paths, need to install lamp post lighting rather than just the odd floor lamps.

We heard that there are going to be some renovations done next year.

There is no where to walk except around the hotel or along the beach. We visited a market in a taxi which was only 5 pesos. It's a very small market but well worth a visit.
The reps hold a meeting the day after your arrival, we went with thomas cook and our rep really didn't seem bothered whether we booked anything or not and didn't really want to communicate with us, but the first choice /Thomson rep angel was lovely, he always spoke and shook our hands even though we didn't go with his tour operator. So if you are going with Thomson/first choice you really won't be disappointed with Angel.

Just be very careful when you return home to UK as the check in desk at Cuba will charge you ridiculous charges if your cases are overweight even by a kilo.

I would recommend this hotel, the only reason I wouldn't go back is because I never go back to the same place twice. I hope to visit Varadero next time.

Good luck and enjoy your holiday :)

Room Tip: Royal service
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank janmary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 14, 2016
Old review, thank you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed October 18, 2012

We stayed here for three weeks in March/April 2012 and I can honestly say it was a wonderful experience, the food was good and thanks to the four alcarte restuarant we were never stuck for choice. Our acomodation was comfortable and of high standard however the bathroom was a bit tired and needed to be refurvished.The people were lovely and very friendly. I would certainly recommend this hotel for a relaxing and enjoyable holiday.

Room Tip: We h ad a ground floor room would have prefered a first floor room with a sea view
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank Suey501
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 14, 2016
Old review, thank you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Corby Northants
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed October 17, 2012

My fiancé and I stayed at the PRDO from 02/10/2012 – 09/10/2012 and had a very pleasant week but neither of us could find anything that really wowed us.
We stayed in a “suite deluxe” (3415). This is a top floor corner room near the pool. Through this room we then had access to room 3416 ( an inner block room) which was made up as a living area so in essence we had 2 of everything except beds, 2 balconies, 2 bathrooms, 2 tv,2 mini bar etc. A note to future travellers, in other blocks these are sold as 2 different bedrooms and the inner room can be dark as the balcony does not stretch out as far as the corner rooms. Pleasantly surprised having read reviews of tired looking rooms but let me tell you they are spotlessly clean, the maids do a great job. Also the fridges do make a lot of noise at night; fortunately as we had 2 of them we simply unplugged the one in the bedroom. The air con was sufficient in both rooms but sometimes turned itself to auto. We did not use the room service so cannot really comment on it and the TV has a few English speaking channels including BBC world news. A note would be that we had pre-arranged a private transfer to the hotel instead on waiting for the bus however our room was not ready upon arrival, indeed it was an hour later that it was ready and the bus had just arrived so a bit pointless really.
For food we mainly ate our breakfast and evening meals in the buffet restaurant and for both servings there was ample to choose from with 2 cooking stations for eggs/omelettes in the morning and meats/fish and pasta in the evenings. Food was plentiful and in the main delicious. We did eat at 2 of the speciality restaurants, the Mediterranean and the Japanese. The food in the Mediterranean was lovely but we felt rushed, indeed we were in and out in under 55 minutes and some couples quicker than us, the Japanese was a much more relaxed atmosphere with again lovely food and I don’t really think it is a necessity for a show table, we didn’t have one and could see all that was going on and the chef made sure we were not excluded. For lunch we ate at the poolside restaurant, superb pizza to be had here.
The pool does need sorted as it is flaking away under foot and cracks appearing but the water is clean and they don’t have loud disco music blaring out all day which was nice and peaceful, also plenty of palapas and beds around to grab some shade if required and the swim up bar will keep you hydrated.
The beach was somewhat of a disappointment, very rocky at the PRDO end of it however once in the water the snorkelling was good. Again plenty of palapas to be had. We found a little cove with a small beach( opposite number 73 bungalow in the royal service area)- this had a beach probably only 40 feet long and my fiancé and I found only ourselves on this most days, unfortunately there is no bar here LOL.
The service we received is what would be expected at any other hotel, nothing more, hence I came home with more money than expected as I did not feel the need to tip often. Not once on the main beach did we see anyone being offered a drink in the way of a waiter service and this only happened once at the pool as well so it was a case of get up and get to the bar yourself which we didn’t mind.
Evening entertainment consisted of a pianist, guitarist, clarinettist etc and was overall a nice backdrop
The weather was overall very good and the rain was mainly overnight although as the previous reviewer has stated on our last day there was a thunderstorm pre tea time which we have been told lightning actually hit the poolside restaurant although no major damage. This only lasted 30 minutes or so.
All in all we went for a relaxing week and that’s exactly what we got, nothing more, nothing less.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Pickflick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
paradisusri0de0r0, Manager at Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 14, 2016
Old review, thank you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa

Property: Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa
Address: Playa Esmeralda, Crta Guardalavaca, Holguin 007, Cuba
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Holguin Province > Holguin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 10 Hotels in Holguin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 354
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the Bahia de Naranjo Natural Park, in Playa Esmeralda, on the northern coast of Holguin province. Five-Star Ultra All Inclusive Eco-Resort with 354 rooms. Conceived only for adults aged 18 years or more. Maximum comfort and perfection in its private Royal Service area for a fabulous experience in a world apart. Recommended for weddings, honeymoons, incentive trips and wellness/spa. Guest Rooms 354 rooms: 254 Junior Suites, 24 Luxury Junior Suites, 16 Luxury Junior Suites Ocean View, 2 Suites Deluxe, 36 Master Junior Suites Royal Service, 14 Master Junior Suites Ocean View Royal Service, 6 Master Junior Suites Luxury Royal Service, 2 Garden Villas Royal Service. Dining: 8 Restaurants (A la Carte, Buffet), 5 Bars. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Paradisus Rio De Oro Resort And Spa
Paradisus Rio De Oro Hotel Holguin
Paradisus Hotel Guardalavaca
Rio De Oro Paradisus
Paradisus Rio De Oro Cuba
Hotel Paradisus Rio De Oro
Paradisus Rio De Oro Resort & Spa Cuba/Holguin

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