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“A Wheelie Good View Of Brisas”

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Brisas Guardalavaca Hotel
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Guardalavaca
SKELMERSDALE
Level Contributor
33 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“A Wheelie Good View Of Brisas”
Reviewed June 1, 2012

well here goes a review from someone who sees things from a slightly different angle and perspective....(about 2ft off the floor and on 4 wheels :) )......

After a 9hour plus flight from MANCHESTER we arrived in HOLGUIN airport to very hot and humid weather..

After a taxi ride (approximately an hours drive) we arrived at the BRISAS HOTEL...

At first glance there is a FLIGHT OF STEPS leading to the main reception area of the hotel...DONT PANIC!!!!! to the LEFT hand side of the STEPS is a RAMPED access for people with MOBILITY PROBLEMS...its not too steep but a LONE TRAVELLING person in a wheelchair MIGHT and i mean MIGHT find this ramp like climbing the north face of the IGER..but DONT PANIC again, the BELL BOYS/PORTERS and any staff that are around will be only too pleased to give you assistance should you require it....

After a quick check in we were escorted to a GOLF CART...yes even someone who cannot stand should be able to access the GOLF CART to be taken to the VILLA section of the HOTEL..this in my opinion is A GOOD MOVE :) (WINKS) well worth the asking for a villa room...

after a short ride in the GOLF CART we were shown into our room 1108 which is situated close to one of the 2 pool areas on the complex.....

once the BELL BOY had escorted us to our rooms he went and retrieved our suitcases from the MAIN RECEPTION AREA and brought them to our room...(worth a little tipping if you can)

Our room was spacious with 2 DOUBLE BEDS in it a small patio area that lead out onto manicured garden areas, the entrance from the front door lead into a small but perfectly manageable hall/dressing room area, off this was the BATHROOM which contained a WALK IN SHOWER/WET ROOM all with HAND RAILS on the TOILET, BY THE SINK, and in the SHOWER CUBICLE area which also contained a WALL MOUNTED SEAT for people with problems in standing and showering and it also helps keep that 4 wheel drive vehicle you travel around in getting wet 24/7 lol....

the BEDROOM contained enough storage space for any KNICK KNACKS you might wish to store away without any problems of worrying if they were going to still be there day after day...think you understand my meanings....yes NO ONE TOUCHES anything in the room that is left around the room it might be tidied up but it will NEVER BE REMOVED from the room, I had an mp3 player, video camera and various other bits and pieces laying around the room and the maid TIDIED THEM but that was all... The only problem I can invisage especially if you are a LONE traveller on 4 wheels is the height of the safe this for me even though i was travelling with my wife was a problem as i could not reach into it to put away any really important documents/money ect after speaking with CUSTOMER RELATIONS/WEDDING CO ORDINATOR yolania she assures me that even though they have had many many disabled people travelling through their hotel this was the first time this had been brought to her attention and I have been assured this situation will be rectified by the next time I am in BRISAS this will not be a problem again...

On leaving the ROOM 1108 turn LEFT and down a small sloping ramp onto the main POOL AREA where there are numerous amounts of sunbeds and i mean when we were there from the 16th may until the 30th may we had a good choice of sunbeds to choose from....

If you look to the RIGHT from your balcony in room 1108 you will see a BAR AREA, now this also has a SWIM UP BAR attached to it so if your a SWIMMER and an ALCOHOLICAL (bit like myself) this is the place to CHILL and hang out should you wish to have a few QUIET drinks and a swim...PLEASE SAY HELLO TO "DANIEL" the BAR TENDER and tell him SHAUN in the wheelchair and MO the big man say hic hic hic hello...he will probably start laughing...private joke..

From the Villa section you can walk either onto the promenade or you can walk back to the MAIN HOTEL where the BUFFET area is situated...this is also ramped from the OTHER POOL area...

The Main Buffet area well what can I say if you cannot find anything in here to have to eat then you must be an extremely fussy eater as this area caters for ALL TASTES and has a variety of food both hot and cold each night....

Should you wish to book any of the a la carte restaurants then this can be done in the MAIN RECEPTION AREA of the HOTEL just PAST the MAIN RECEPTION DESK area where you will find CUSTOMER RELATIONS.....be warned they do get booked up fairly quickly so I would suggest that this is done on your 1st morning after arriving and hopefully you will get the restaurant/s of your choice but like I said be early or you could be disappointed...

I must admit that the ONLY restaurant that someone confined to a 4 wheeled vehicle will NOT be able to access is the ITALIAN as there are quite a few steps into this restaurant but it was suggested to me that should MYSELF and MY WIFE an our 2 friends really want to go there then arrangements to access this restaurant would be made but we graciously declined as we felt that PIZZA and PASTA could be eaten in the BUFFET restaurant and we can also have the afformentioned at home any time we like and we wanted to try the other a la carte restaurants...

There are numerous BRIDGES over the pool areas/small little rivers that surround the villas and although these are not steep after a few HIC HIC HIC'S you might require some assistance to negotiate one or two of them..wink wink...


All in all anyone who is travelling to this hotel PLEASE PLEASE DONT BE AFRAID if your in a 4wheel vehicle 24/7 if you can not access something...ASK someone whether it be a GARDNER cleaner waiter ect ect they will be only too pleased to give you any assistance...

As for the staff from the RECEPTION STAFF down to the gardeners what can I say about these people...ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC...treat them with RESPECT and dont look down on them and you will never find friendlier happier people than the CUBAN'S....


Want a good tip....if you want time out away from the hotel for a few hours or so speak to one of the many taxi drivers outside the hotel and negotiate a price to where you want to go...

May I just add my thanks to LOONY LOU for all her advice and help prior to booking :)

Room Tip: 1107 and 1108 VILLA ROOMS are a must if your in a 4 wheeled vehicle...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
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14 Thank liverpoolmadman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Addlestone, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2012

Our 3rd visit to this hotel - staying in the villa section. Had to make a late booking due to cancellation in February because of a family bereavement and could only book the main hotel. However, Thomas Cook rep Oz very helpful in helping us get an upgrade to the villa section despite the hotel being very busy. Found Oz to be one of the best reps we have had with Thomas Cook. Hotel staff friendly, as usual, and saw lots of improvements around the complex compared with previous visits. Most evenings we were able to book one of the a la carte restaurants.

Have already booked to go February 2013.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Alison B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bath, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed May 31, 2012

OK, let's start by stating that my wife and I are seasoned travellers (late 50's) who have visited over 20 countries and have experienced everything from mud huts to high end Spa Resorts so we are open minded and therefore view a holiday as a complete experience. Our days of tailor made independent travel are over (thanks to the recession) and our last couple of trips have been all inclusive. We looked long and hard at options available for Cuba and finally chose this resort as it appeared to offer value for money.

The good bits.

Cuba is probably one of the most amazing countries that we have ever visited, it is the Caribbean without any of the problems. White sand beaches, culture, fabulous music, simple but superb food, very little crime, places of interest and the kindest most accommodating people we have ever had the pleasure to meet. Oh and don't forget the Rum :)

Staff at the Brisas, on the whole, were kind and friendly and willing to make your holiday as special as possible. Marbellis, in particular, in Customer Relations, did everything she could to ensure our holiday was a memorable one despite the problems we experienced.

Get off resort as much as possible and try to experience the real Cuba. Don't use the tour reps as they charge 3 to 4 times what you will pay using a local taxi and guide (we had a total diamond who looked after our every need) Cuba is about the people and the culture not beer and pizza.

The not so good bits.

The resort was probably really special at some time in the distant past but time, lack of investment, government ownership and the elements have not been kind. In all honesty, without a massive injection of funds they should probably close the place down for one season and give it a total make over.

The main pool area was the haunt of large groups of shaven headed, pot bellied, tattooed and generally objectionable individuals (and that's the women) who believd that all inclusive means drinking, eating, shouting and smoking as much as possible 24 hours a day. Thankfully the Villa area is a haven of peace and quiet although during the off peak season the Villa buffet was closed so the main buffet could not cope with the increased number of customers during breakfast and dinner (not that we ate there after our first experience)

Food in general was pretty diabolical (yes I know Cuba is a poor country) with recycled food, canned or frozen veg, overcooked meat and a very poor selection of desserts. Quite a few of the guests we spoke to complained of upset stomachs. The main buffet was referred to as the "pig trough" by many guests. I have owned and run a food business so I am more than aquainted with food quality and basic food hygeine requirements. Unfortunately the A la Carte restaurants offered the same food but served with the odd garnish. The lobster was frozen and cooked to the consistency of rubber. The Fillet steak in the Italian was Rump and the food in the Cuban was totally inedible. I have to say that after bringing our concerns to the attention of the Customer Relations Manager and talking to the Food and Beverage Manager we were treated to some special attention but that should not have been necessary.
We ate off resort on 8 occasions and the food served was simple but fresh and beautifully cooked so there really is no excuse for what is served at Brisas. We spoke candidly to some staff and were told that after change of ownership from a Canadian company to the Cuban Govt, the quality of the resort had dropped dramatically. On 3 occasions I asked the waiter if he would eat what he had just served me and the answer all 3 times was "no".

While there, we had a flood from the ceiling in our room which ruined some of our belongings and we had an issue with cockroaches in the bathroom. Again issues with the age of the property.

We have already started to look at returning as soon as possible to Cuba but not back to the Brisas. Just because something is inexpensive, it should not mean "cheap". Spend a couple of extra pounds and stay at a resort that offers bags more value.

Room Tip: Villa rooms are larger and quieter than the hotel rooms. Block 5000 or 6000 offer the best location...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank dingabell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedfordshire
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed May 31, 2012

The staff were great, they were all very friendly, no exceptions.

Best beach I've seen in a while, very clean, swept daily but I wasn't happy about the occasional beggers who accosted guests.

Cuba is an amazing place. If you take the trouble to get out and about you will see the happy people. Be prepared to see some living on the wrong side of the track however.

Personally, I wasn't impressed by any of the A la Carte restaurants. I tried them all but in the end preferred the buffet dining hall. I have no complaints about the food but would say that the variety of salads was not as diverse as your typical hotel in the Med.

If you are in the main hotel block then get a room overlooking the gardens and not the sea. Our room overlooked the sea which in turn ensured that the LOUD, LOUD music blew us out of bed each night. Cubans at this hotel only do LOUD, no matter what you say to the Animation team. The Aircon worked great and the room maids were especially good. All plumbing worked fine and there are no complaints on that score.
Beds were firm but comfortable.

Weather 32 to 36 degrees each day with the 'Trade Winds' blowing from the sea to cool you down. Heaven.....

Would we go back? Yes. We are returning in November and yes I know that is during the hurricane season.

Room Tip: If you are in the main hotel block then get a room overlooking the gardens and not the sea. They are...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Stotfoldian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
17 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed May 31, 2012

The beach was very nice and I enjoyed being able to go off the resort and meeting people who live in the neighboring villages. I didnt enjoy the restaurants and the buffet was average. I ate a lot of french fries and pizza. For a really good deal I would go back again. There were a lot of croaking bullfrogs at night and big spiders....consider yourself warned if that freaks you out. I also didnt find it very well lit at night. But overall I had a good time and it is a nice resort.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Dancindiva3232
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wsussex
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed May 30, 2012

got back yesterday and what a fantastic hotel this is ! great staff ! food ! everything you could wish for in a fantastic holiday ! even the lobster is included in the price ! nothing is too much trouble at this hotel and it was my best holiday ever !!! and have been on too many to mention lol maybe thats why nearly everyone i met had come back again some even 17 times ! now that is unusual ! as a review i read said this isnt the ritz but you havent paid to stay at the ritz lol fav restaurants were seafood and italian but to be honest they were all good ! a big thankyou to all the staff !! they make this place !!

Room Tip: main hotel 4th floor amazing views
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank ken r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peterborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed May 30, 2012

Having never been on an all inclusive holiday, or to Cuba, I was sceptical about the trip, but it turned out the be the best holiday of my life. Myself and my partner booked Brisas as a quite last minute thing, and because of this, we had to book a villa. Although it turned out to be about £140 more, it was a blessing; the villas were quiet, very large, well equipt and clean. The villas were perfect for us as we were keen to avoid the whole poolside entertainment scene, which is just our preference. The pool near to the villas was NEVER busy, I had read reviews about people reserving sun beds with towels and there not being any room. This could not have been further from the truth, any time of day, there was a huge amount of choice. (This may be because the time of year we visited, may).
The beach was great, again, no complaints about no sun beds, no people hassling you, sellings things etc. My boyfriend enjoyed snorkeling in the ocean. The pedalos that are included free of charge are great.
The buffet food was the only part of the holiday I would like improved. The fresh meat that was bought and and carved was always delicious, but the trays of food were often not that great. However, the restuarants you can book in to were really great, especially the italian.
Not being the type to spend a lot of time sitting by the pool, we decided to do a LOT of the excursions, 6 to be precise. A few people have been saying they believe the prices are too high, I do not agree at all, for the 6 trips we took, we were more than happy with what we paid. Our favourite trips were the Jeep Safari, dolphin swim and island paradise. We did the trip to Santiago De Cuba, which was a beautiful place, but with 3 hours on a coach, looking back, we would not be doing it again.
Tour guides and hotel staff were helpful, the front desk was sometimes a bit slow though. As a young couple looking for a mixture of relaxation and things to do, Brisas couldnt of accomodated our needs any better. I really would recommend to anyone.

Room Tip: I really would recommend a villa if you want somewhere more quiet and peaceful.
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Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Daisy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Brisas Guardalavaca Hotel

Property: Brisas Guardalavaca Hotel
Address: Calle 2, Playa, Guardalavaca 84170, Cuba
Location: Caribbean > Cuba > Holguin Province > Guardalavaca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Guardalavaca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Brisas Guardalavaca Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 437
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Also Known As:
Brisas Hotel Guardalavaca
Guardalavaca Brisas Hotel
Brisas Guardalavaca Hotel Cuba - Holguin Province

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