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“Not so good as I thought”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Villa Cayo Saetia

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Villa Cayo Saetia
Ranked #6 of 10 Hotels in Holguin
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Not so good as I thought”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 18, 2014 via mobile

Very expensive...I paid 94 CUC to stay here... the house was very dirty in the floor. The dinner was also very expensive and the staff is kind but just to tray to get propine...if you don't give you see that they aren't. Cayo saetia is beautiful but if you can go there without stay in the hotel better.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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5 Thank susanalves
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Rhodes, Greece
Level Contributor
68 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2014

We stayed there for a couple of nights on February 2013. After a long and tiring 5 hour drive from Baracoa we finally passed the gate of this environmental protected island. The hotel is situated in the heart of an ecological park that is why you come across with many animals on the road, like a camel for example which was very surprising or deers, zebras etc. The most impressive in my opinion were the big iguanas which were standing lazy at the area of the hotel. The hotel is not situated on the beach but on the center of the island and it is consisted of many little separated houses. Our room was a little house just like that. It was clean and spacious but quite old fashioned. It could be a little better maintained. On the other hand it was very quiet because the houses are situated on a quite big distance one from another and sitting on the verandas were really nice. Staff as everywhere in Cuba were helpful and discrete. Dinner was tasty, although selections were limited but we tried ostrich which was tasty. I have left the main attraction for the end. This is the one and only Cayo Saetia beach. We were lucky enough and the day was windless, so the sea was totally calm. We felt like we were swimming in melted glass, a warm white green crystal sea with smooth white sand, an absolute paradise, a miracle. Believe me I come from Greece, I leave in Rhodes island, I swim 300 days per year in a deep transparent clean blue sea but this swim was something else, just unforgettable. I think this is the main reason why someone should stay here instead of visit the place on a daily trip with a catamaran or jeep safari. These people come, swim, eat and leave at the same time from 12 noon until 3 in the afternoon and massive tourism steals the charm of this place. It is impossible in my opinion to feel this magic beach if you don't stay here. And a little warning for windless days. Use sunscreen oil to avoid sand flies which can be aggressive but harmless.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank nikonas1976
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ashford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
412 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 567 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 10, 2013 via mobile

The only reason to come to this island is to visit the beautiful beach. This is where the day trip catamarans stop for lunch and a swim, horse ride and safari. This is one of the most picturesque beaches in the Caribean and well worth a visit. The water here is absolutely crystal clear and the soft sand extends out to the coral. There is a picturesque restaurant that overlooks the small quayside and beaches. You can rent beach beds and pedaloes. You might see the occasional wealthy Cuban at weekends, but as admission costs ten dollars you won't see any of the locals. If you don't have a passport when you arrive by car, the guard will not let you in. You can drive round the island, passed the campsite and the villa accommodation, but the beaches are not really that nice and the scrubby vegetation is not as attractive as parts of the mainland. As for the animals, a few deer and a couple of zebras. Wow, let's all go and safari. A nice day out from Guardalavaca or Holguin, if you're coming from the beach resorts it will take about two hours. Turn off before Banes but avoid the unmetalled road. If there's four persons hiring a car you will save 150 dollars by avoiding the catamaran and have more fun exploring. Lunch in the restaurant is 15 dollars. Take a picnic from the buffet if you are all inclusive and some drinks from the fridge. This island is run by the Gaviota tour company who specialise in gathering tourist money.

Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
10 Thank Pedroofpobla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reggio Emilia, Italy
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2013

Me my wife and two friends had been to Cayo Saetia on 03-March-2012. We had reached the Isle by car ( bad Chinese car) and we met some trouble for get there, the roads are very damaged. The place is quite and wonderfull, you can meet some original African's animal, it's strange but is true. I my opinion I've seen one of the most beautiful beach that I ever seen. The room and the restaurant are ok. I think that at least one week is the right period to spend on Cayo Saetia and if I'll be back to Cuba I'll stay again on this wonderfull Cayo.

Room Tip: We my wife and two friends have been in Villa Cayo Saetia on 03 March 2012 for only two nights, tha...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Luigi P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 20, 2012

My wife and I visited Saetia Island a few years ago but didn't realise it was a holiday resort, we flew in by helicopter(brilliant experience and were even allowed in the cockpit with the pilots) from pesquero beach.
Upon arrival there were huge iguanas roaming around by the restraunt / bar area with one of them having had its leg bitten off by the biggest one of them all which was about a meter long.
We were taken on a safari around the island and informed that all the old gangsters used to use it to hunt the well stocked wild game at that time in the early 50's.But now it is a nature reserve and the animals that are still there are protected.
You could go horse back riding or just relax on the beach and go snorkling equipment provided or use the hammocks provided and prior to our return to the resort we were taken out in the boats for a ride around the harbour to view the island from the sea.
At the time it was brilliant value for the money with helicopter ride alone as we had never been in one before it was well worth every peso. Although I am limited by the date I can enter at the end of this review it was about 2008 that we visited the island

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank benrobjo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa y Holguin
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 3, 2012

Had been there 5 years ago with wife and 5 yr old. Had rented a little Fiat, not good for off-roading. Stayed 2 nights, great room, queen plus 2 singles.
Hired a guide with jeep to search for animals at dusk. Saw about 300 antelope playing, and were 5m from 10 zebras in the dark. When the lights on the jeep failed, made for a fun ride in the dark.

Returned in March 2012 with a rented Suzuki 4X4. Late afternoon saw
about 100 antelope, 8 zebras, ostrich, and water buffalo. Was walking toward zebra's to get a closer foto when a thorn pierced my 'safety' crocs.
At my yell, the 2 water buffalo started my way and I made it to the jeep.
Next day nurse removed thorn. Fun.

Water crystal clear, staff great, food OK. Was $100CUC per night for the 3 of us, meals included. Lunch at the catamaran stop.

After dark, searched for jutias with the kid and security. Saw flashes as they scooted across the grass to hide in a bamboo grove. They are apparently endangered as they were good eating.

Bring a book and a camera and enjoy. A vehicle helps as the better beaches are 5-7 km's from the cabins.

The Suzuki worked well, managed to hit most of the deeper puddles and returned it covered in red mud.

On the way from Holguin visited Pinar de Mayari, need a jeep for that too. Steep road with big rocks. Coffee growing, cooler temp. We were the only people at the resort there, had a few brews and a picnic lunch.

The catamaran trip might be fun, but the majority of the animals are hiding from the sun when they go on their noontime safari.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank smact2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Level Contributor
319 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 153 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 18, 2012

This report was originally written in 2006 for our trip in May 2006. Due to the shortage of reports on this destination, I thought that it would be a valuable addition. Bear in mind that the pricing & conditions may be different now, but we had a great time at this isolated destination.

You can't just go to the resort website & book a night. The ongoing US Embargo has made this process difficult. You can book thru an agent in Cuba or Europe or Canada & your VISA (No US bank cards accepted) is charged by another company in Europe in Euros. Then they issue a voucher which is what you use in Cuba. Ditto for car rentals. We used: Vacacionar Travel in Habana.

Overview: A 42 sq km nature reserve/resort located 120 kms southeast of Holguin between the Bahia de Nipe & the Atlantic Ocean. Expect a 2 – 3 hr drive from Holguin or Guadalavaca. The closet town is Mayari. The resort consists of 12 cabins in 4 levels – small rooms 35 CUC , standard 45 CUC, superior cabins 60 CUC & 1 suite cabin 80 CUC.

The peninsula is very dry with mixed open plains & forest. We only had 5 minutes of rain one evening during our 4 night stay.

The cabins & main building are all found in an enclosure an 8 kms drive from the main drawbridge that is the only access to the peninsula. The fenced enclosure keeps the wildlife away from the cabins, although the ostriches wander in on occasion & curly-tailed lizards abound everywhere & a family of 3 iguanas resides near the main building. Oh & two large parrots + a baby fly in & out at will.

The beach is a 6 km drive from the main resort over a gravel road. In sections, the road has been washed out & not re-graded which makes for a very slow & bumpy ride. It twist & turns through forest & some open plains where you can spot deer in the distance.

They have a small gift shop in the main building. The main building also houses the restaurant & a large room with a bar & a TV which the staff use to watch Spanish language game shows. We sat here to have coffee after dinner & I usually flamed a nice cigar from my stash of 'samplers'.

Accommodations: We stayed in Cabin # 12 – a superior – that stood alone near the fence. It is a cedar & pine 3 room cabin with a double bedded room, a bathroom with tub & shower, & a main room with a dining table, kitchen area with sink & hotplate & small fridge. A pullout couch & smaller couch for sitting. are also in the main room. A porch with 2 rocking chairs faces the Bahia Cristo in the distance. Satellite TV & phones in every room & laundry service is available.

The are a couple of other cabins & then some rooms that are in a couple of rows. These are the cheapest. The single suite is raised on posts & offers the best view.

Restaurants: The main restaurant serves breakfast & dinner. The beach restaurant serves lunch. A meal plan is available & necessary since the closest town is 20 – 30 kms away. Breakfast is served ala carte with egg dishes, toast, juices, coffee etc. Dinner is a nightly choice of meat dishes – beef, pork, chicken, fish & antelope stew. All somewhat plain but good with very large portions. French fries, rice, bread & a fruit & vegetable plate accompany dinner. Wine is available for 10.50 CUC.

The beach restaurant serves a buffet with a good selection – breads, rice, various meats & meat stews.

Liquor is extra & inexpensive.

Beach: The beach is stunning white fine sand & well kept. It is 6 kms from the main camp. Various pocket beaches allow for privacy. Tour groups arrive by boat & helicopter & often share lunch with guests. They tend to take over the beach area when they arrive & it is a relief with they disappear around 3 PM. Bar service is available from around 9 AM until around 3 PM.

Activities: This is no pool, tennis courts, beach volleyball etc. This is a nature resort. Jeep safaris are available at 9 CUC per person. The day tours go midday, but the guide gave us a private tour at 5 PM when more animals are active as the heat of the day subsides. Various species of deer, antelope, water buffalo, zebras, ostriches, parrots & a resident camel can be seen. The crocodiles are gone but they warn you that 2 escaped & might live somewhere. Guests are forbidden to drive or walk unguided in the reserve except on the road to the beach. We inadvertently drifted off this route on our first drive to the beach & got our jeep temporary stuck when I looked back at a monster iguana & ran off the road. 4WD saved us. Other wildlife which we saw near the enclosure include the jutia (hutia) – a large Cuban rodent & horses & cattle are always wandering around.

Boat & horseback tours are also available & scuba excursions to the Atlantic reef on the north shore can be arranged from what we saw.

The Negatives: You must have a car. You have to helicopter, drive or boat to get here & the beach is a 6 km drive from the cabins. The roads are very rough gravel, so a Jeep would be a wise rental. There is no pool. There is no entertainment & many of the usual resort activities are absent. The nearest town is a 45 minute drive over poor roads & gasoline can be an adventure to buy. The station in Mayari was out of gas & we had to drive to Levisa to get some with the aid of a hitchhiker for location.

The Positives: With only 12 cabins, you leave the crowds behind except for the tours that arrive at the beach from Guadalavaca on some days & the people that arrive have a somewhat ignorant we-own-it attitude. Not pretty but they do go away.

If you want isolation & a quiet holiday (except for the occasional beach invasion), Cayo Saetia might be a good choice. The staff was excellent. They live onsite on a 3 day rotating schedule. Other tourists seemed to be exclusively from Europe – Germany, France & Spain were represented during our stay. Highly recommended.

Room Tip: Get one of the separate wooden superior cabins.
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  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
7 Thank imcarthur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Villa Cayo Saetia

Property: Villa Cayo Saetia
Address: Cayo Saetia | Mayari, Holguin 80100, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Holguin Province > Holguin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 10 Hotels in Holguin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 12
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Also Known As:
Villa Cayo Saetia Hotel Holguin
Villa Cayo Saetia Cuba/Holguin

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