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“good resort,but busy”

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Memories Paraiso Beach Resort
Ranked #12 of 15 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
camb.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“good resort,but busy”
Reviewed April 22, 2013

went to the memories paraiso,at cayo santa maria,bus trip from the airport still the same.check in was very good had bracletts and room keys on the bus,beach towels in the room away you go! the resort was very busy,the staff at times were just over run.they worked hard but need more help.drinks at the beach bar swimup bar lousy.grill drinks ok,lobby drinks were good.the food at the buffet was good in my opion.i,m not a fussy eater sooo. lots of fish,calamari,shrimps,chicken of course.went to the seafood ala carte,sad they had a premade menu.lobster was fair.had itialian,found the food subpar there.we had a group of 7 so could not get any other reservations?
also understaffed here as well.entertainment was good.all around.the room was good.no problems.all in all if the $ is right i would go back.the beach there is top notch.

Room Tip: go for a room in the 30,to 36 buildings very middle of the resort.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank jeep1957
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Windsor, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed April 22, 2013

We travelled April 14 and returned on the 21st with 13 adults.

Positives:
Pool was fun
Beach was nice

Negatives:
Ala Carts are good but very slow service no matter how much of a tip you gave
Buffets are bad, food is recycled and cold
Food is not refilled when it runs out.
rooms are tired and in need of repair (room 5604 had clicking noises in the AC vents loud enough to wake you up.)
Diamond Club is a rip off and has zero value and is a joke
Bar tenders are not bar tenders and cannot make a sprcialty drink they offer
Bar tenders serve beer in wine glasses, Martinis in beer mugs (no joke)
glasses have lipstick on them....gross
grounds are in need of TLC
Burgers on the grill cannot be beef, taste is no beef I have ever tasted........someone said horse.
No clocks on the resort or in rooms
We paid $800 from Windsor and that is still too much.

Room Tip: STAY AWAY or if you are like me and go with a low expectation........you will still be disappointed...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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5 Thank Kentinipon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Cayo Santa Maria hotels

Cape Breton Island, Canada
1 review
Reviewed April 22, 2013

We visited this resort for 7 days returning April 21st. We had a room on the 3rd floor in building 61 which overlooked the beach and it had an amazing view. This building while it is the most distance from the lobby, it was perfect for us. We were very close to the beach, and the pool (which we did not use) and near the beach grill. This is a very big resort and it required a lot of walking from our location on the resort to the lobby or to the small market on the far end of the adjoining Pariso resort. Trollys were available and we took advantage of them when available. They do not run on any specific schedule so they could be hit or miss.

Room:
Our room was kept clean, thanks to the lady that cleaned our room "Yany" who was great. We always had clean towels, and our mini bar was restocked daily with water, pop and beer. We had no problems with bugs. We saw a few small ants, but just used a bit of alcohol hand gel on the counter and they were eliminated.

Food:
We had breakfast and lunch at the grill daily, and they made your eggs to order. I was disappointed with the variety and amount of fruit available as at times the fruit area was not replenished or only canned variety was available. Depending on the time you arrived and availability you could get fresh pineapple, water melon or oranges. On one occasion at lunch in the grill, most of the trays were empty and we were told there was nothing available to replenish. This was at 2:00 and the grill was open till 3:00? We went to the buffet a couple of evenings. Our suggestion - - if you do go to the buffet, go early, near opening time. If you were there early it was enjoyable with less lineups at the grill and food areas. One evening it was so congested we lost our table when we went to get our food, and had difficulty finding another table. We went to several Al a Carte restaurants - the Mediterranean (the best experience), the Asian and Italian were also good. We have visited a number of resorts in Cuba and the food at this resort here was not up to the standards of other resorts we visited.

Beach:
The beach is amazing, however if you want shade be prepared to get up very early to get a seat. We put our towels out between 5:00 and 5:30 am and got only one of a few cabanas left. People were placing their towels on on chairs the evening before. For the size of the resort they should build more cabanas on the beach as there is adequate space on the beach for more.

Entertainment:
We did not take in the shows, however we did listen to music each evening in the lobby which was very enjoyable.

Money
You can convert your money at the small bank on the resort. We exchanged Canadian currency at $ 93.75 per $100. Canadian. You need your passport to exchange. Note - this is the only area that exchanges money including converting Cuban convertible pesos in smaller denominations as they do not change money at the front desk. One evening we did ask the lobby bar to convert Cuban $20. bill into smaller currency and they were able to do this for us.

The workers on the resort were for the most part very pleasant and they work hard. Overall we were OK with the resort and enjoyed our time, however with the lack of available Cabanas on the beach and some issues with the food we will probably not return.

Room Tip: Get a room on 2nd or 3rd floor.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Caper2303
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed April 22, 2013

Having been to Cuba 5 times before this trip (April 10th -17th), we found this resort average for Cuba, with a couple enexpected pros and cons. We upgraded to diamond club, but would not do so again.
pros:
-we were assigned our rooms and a la carte reservations while on the bus; when we got to the hotle, we were given our swipe card and went to our room. Within 5 minutes our bags had arrived. Easiest check-in ever.
-the beach is gorgeous; pictures do not do it justice.
-the staff was wonderful
the resort and rooms were clean (we were in block 58, nice an quiet)
-champagne everywhere (and I'm a big fan)

cons:
-on a few days, there was an extremely poor selection of food; we were there from Wednesday to Wednesday. On the Monday at 8:00am, theree was no food at the breakfast buffet; no eggs, no bread, NOTHING! Then on Tuesday, they had fully restocked everything and is was wonderful.
-even with the diamond club, one must get up no later than 6:00am to reserve a chair in the shade at the beach. For the most part, I would see people reserve their chairs, and then be back at the beach using them by 8:30 or 9:00am. It was rare that people would reserve them and not actually use them. We did not use the pools, but I was told the chair problem was much worse there. If you don't mind sitting in the sun, you can show up at anytime.
-and this is relatively minor; no straws at any bar for the whole week.

In general, I would go back here again if I saw a great price. The resort is big, but we walked from one end to the other in less than 10 minutes. The food was average for Cuba and I hope that the buffet running out of food that one day was just a onetime thing. We did not use the a la carte restaurants as we found the evening buffet adequate. There were no robes in the room or turn-down service that was to be associated with the diamon club. But the diamond club did offer top end drinks in their lounge (self serve) live Chivas and Jameson.

This is not a 5 star, even by Cuban standards, but it is a strong 3 - 3.5 star. The staff, however, are 5 star all the way!!!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Barrie P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013 via mobile

I was so hesitant on booking our trip to this resort because of how negative the reviews were on here. Please read the positive reviews and based your opinion on those. Those negative reviews are most likely those people who always complain and are never satisfied no matter what.

Grounds- beautiful greenery, landscaping, colourful flowers everywhere you look. Gardeners always working pulling weeds, etc.

Beach- one word "breathtaking".

Rooms- clean and comfortable

Staff- outstanding, super friendly

Food- good...dont come expecting food like a cruise ship cause you won't find it. However the food was hot and fresh and we always found something we liked. The grill stations were our favorite. The fish, chicken and beef are grilled right in front of you and they are fantastic. They grill them with white wine, salt and pepper and this amazingly delicious salsa. The pasta station is delicious as well.

Excursions- we only did the catamaran excursion but I will say it is well worth the $103/person. 8:30-5:30...snorkle...drink...interact with dolphins...lobster lunch...gorgeous private beach...entertaining staff...great experience!

What to bring- LOTS of sunsceen!! We thought we brought more than enough but we didn't. Sun is way hotter than we were used to. Sunscreen there is expensive and horrible...it leaves a pasty white film on your skin that is hard to remove. Bring tumblers..larger cups that keep your drinks cold and so you dont have to make so many trips to the bar. Also plan to leave cups there. Find a waitress or bartender to give them to. Those items are hard to come by and they love those things. We brought some planning to give them away but a sweet waitress approached us while we had them and asked to buy them from us for her kids. Of course thats who we decided to give them to. Bring blow up air floaters for the pool. Find a cheap one that is not too heavy for your luggage. Many people had brought them and seeing them relax in the pool, we wish we had thought of that too. Bring comfortable sandals or walking shoes...it is a big resort so there is some walking.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
3 Thank ToniaMacLean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

We travelled from April 12th to April 19th - 4 of us including 2 children. We had a great time. The hotel was very clean (found no bugs anywhere -despite what some reviews were claiming...), the beach was spectacular - crystal clear turquoise waters and soft sandy beaches. The hotel staff were amazing - very kind and accommodating. For food - there was always plenty to eat. Some folks are critiquing the line ups for the grill items - you can avoid these but going to the Sports grill and also by avoiding peak meal times. All in all - I can't complain about the food, and our two children always found something they liked/wanted. The SunWing flights were on time, and they provided great service. We would definitely return to this resort.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Christine B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Souris
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 21, 2013

My husband and I stayed at Memories Azul from April 4-11, 2013. This is our 7th trip to Cuba and first time to Cayo Santa Maria. We traveled with Sunwing and everything went as scheduled. This was the smoothest ever arrival. 30 minutes after landing, we were on the bus having a cold Cervasa! The drive to the resort is about 90 minutes but went by fairly quickly. We were given an envelope when we boarded the bus with our room number and bracelets. We arrived at resort around noon and weren't sure if all rooms would be ready so we didn't bother waiting in line. Instead, we found a spot on the beach and had some lunch. We checked back around 2 and were given room cards - luggage was already in room.

We were in 5507. This is a good fairly central location. I usually don't like the first floor but our room was fine, clean and spacious enough with a lovely balcony. We had no problems with anything in the room. The air condition works too well sometimes and you wake up freezing at night but that was our fault as we set the temp. There is an outlet in every room that will operate Canadian electrical appliances. I used the one by the coffee pot for hair straightener. The sink is outside the bathroom which is nice. There is a small fridge in the room which is replenished daily with pop and beer. I think you only get 1-2 bottles of water for the week. We met Javier our room service guy several times as he often came in the early evening and he is a sweet young man. We really enjoyed chatting with him.

The beach is the most beautiful I have ever seen. We went for long walks every morning. I think this resort has the nicest and widest beach on the island. The water is clean and beautiful. It was windy most of the week so we could swim but weren't supposed to go out very far and we did not get to use the pedal boats or catamaran. We were told that snorkeling and fishing is good at the end of the beach where there is a rocky area but we did not get to try because of the wind. Even though there are a lot of shelters, getting a spot in the shade is a challenge and you have to be up pretty early in the morning. Many spots were saved with towels and never used and a lot of people would save 3-4 chairs for two people.

I cannot comment on the pools because we never went near them but there appeared to be a lot of pools spread out over the resort.

As we spent all day every day on the beach, we got to know these bartenders. Alex and Alehandra at the A-Team bar are great. I would recommend spending some time in the afternoon sitting at the bar for a drink. They are funny and entertaining. The A-team bar does not have very good beer though. The diamond Club bar has cold on tap Crystal. Ridiel and Robert at this bar are very kind and always smiling. Because they have butler service for diamond club members, these guys work very hard but are always pleasant. We would have a drink in the lobby in the evenings. It was always very busy and sometimes you would have to wait a few minutes but not a big deal. They also walk around taking orders.

We ate at the buffet for most meals and sampled 3 ala cartes. We have no complaints about the food and I think we both gained weight. I think it is a good idea to sit in the same section at meal times. The servers will remember you and have your drinks etc ready when you sit down. The servers were very pleasant and accommodating. The omelets at breakfast were delicious as usual. Our favorites were at the first station with the lovely young lady who used a frying pan instead of the grill. She took a bit longer but was worth the wait.

There is entertainment in the lobby most evenings and I think entertainment in Theatre as well. We watched several shows which were well done.

This resort is quite big and I would not recommend for anyone with difficulty walking, but carts go by frequently offering rides.

We thoroughly enjoyed our vacation and would go back in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Joan L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Memories Paraiso Beach Resort

Property: Memories Paraiso Beach Resort
Address: Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Villa Clara Province > Cayo Santa Maria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 15 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Memories Paraiso Beach Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 666
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