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civediamo
Oakville, Canada

Sub-par food

3.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed Jul 22, 2015
We were two families (9 in total). Between the two families we had both visited Cuba in the past, and we know that you don't go to Cuba for the food. It's rated 5 stars so we thought it has to be kind of good. But we felt the food was a big disappointment- especially the main buffet. We both experienced better food at other Cuban resorts. Some highlights - the Japanese restaurant and the lobster at the Cuban a la carte restaurant. The Italian restaurant wasn't so good - but we didn't starve.

The resort is lovely it's just too bad that when things break they don't get fixed. The hallways to the rooms were dark because lightbulbs would not get replaced. We had 4 rooms in our group and each one had an issue(missing screen door, no water pressure, broken closet doors, poor a/c). As for the service - sometimes it was really good, other times really bad. The outdoor bars use plastic cups and when empty they fly away. So they end up as litter in the pool, in the sand, on the grounds. It gives the resort a run-down feeling. The big plus for this resort is the beach - it's beautiful. There are lots of nice pools too. In addition to the main pool, there are 2 quiet pools. Overall it was a great trip! We were travelling with great friends and it was sunny and hot everyday.
Date of stay: July 2015
Room Tip: We were on the 4th floor in building 15. Saw no bugs or creepy crawlies.
Trip type: Travelled with family
3.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Gerente at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this review
Responded Jul 24, 2015
Dear clients,

On behalf of IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts, I would like to thank you for choosing the IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul for your vacation. We sincerely regret that your vacation experience was not enjoyable as you expected , as it is our goal to ensure that our guests have a wonderful stay with us.
We are sorry to hear that your experience with us did not live up to our usual level concerning the food and beverage quality. We already shared it with the departments involved in order to look for improvement and enhance the quality. However we would like to clarify that our Chef is always working on improving the different options offered at our buffets and A la Carte Restaurants.
We appreciate your review and your valuable feedback and haven taken all your comments into consideration. If you decide to give us another chance in the future, please do not hesitate to contact us. It will be our pleasure to welcome you again.

Kind Regards,

Online Reputation Manager
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 22, 2015

Stay: July 4th – 11th, 2015

When I booked this holiday I was told that Iberostar was a very good chain of hotels that is very child friendly which is exactly what I was looking for when for this trip with my 7 year old daughter.

When we first arrived; the check in at the front desk was very slow it took over an hour for me to check into the hotel (standing in line with no air conditioning and/or fans by the front desk).

FOOD:
I didn’t expect much from the food. Some of it was good while other things like the deli meat and cheese were covered in flies. The lack of air conditioning might to be a factor.
I found some the servers in both the main buffet and the beach buffet to be less than friendly and helpful. A few were very nice and helpful but majority were not attentive and/or helpful.

COMPLAINT:
On the 3rd day of our stay, the toilet seat in our bathroom broke. I told the maid about it the same morning and was told it would be taken care of. When I returned back to the room that evening, the entire toilet seat was GONE. When I phoned down to the front desk; I was told that it was “too late” and “maybe tomorrow”. The following morning, (after squatting to use the washroom and holding my daughter up), on the way to the beach, I stopped the maid and the maintenance man and asked when would the seat be replaced and the response I got from both was “not sure”. I spoke to the front desk and asked to have one replaced as soon as possible and if not for the obvious reasons, I explained I’m traveling with a child. The front desk suggested moving me to a different building and/or floor. I explained that a friend of mine is staying in the building next to mine (#16) and there were rooms available next to her, on the same floor as mine. If a new toilet seat was not available, and to minimize the hassle, I would appreciate if they could keep me as close to her as possible and move me to the rooms available on the same floor.

I was told that these rooms were ocean view and not what I paid for therefore I would have to pay $25CUP per night. The friend who was there with me and stayed in the “oceanview” room booked the same type of room as me but was moved to this room when she asked to be close to me. I explained that she was not charged additionally for the room. I spoke to their customer service who advised me to speak to my Sunwing rep. The rep understood what my concerns were and was able to have my room switched over. The entire ordeal took well over an hour. I’m convinced that based on their lack of reaction and/ or solution, had I not fought to change rooms; I would’ve spent the remainder of my trip without a toilet seat in a 5 STAR hotel!!!!

ROOM:
When it came to the rooms; both smelled really “musty” but I chucked it up to the Caribbean climate. The first room did not have all working lights and the second did not have working fans. The closet door kept falling off its track in the second room. I figured; you win some and you lose some. The towels were also quite stained and not fresh smelling. The first 2 days we were there, there was a shortage of towels (both bath and beach). Throughout the week, we were only able to change our beach towels twice because again, there was a shortage and some days we were told the company did not deliver any.

The bed sheets smelled very musty too and there was a smell on the pillows that I cannot quite identify but I slept without pillows the entire week. The sheets were also not the “freshest”.

The ironing board in our room was burned right through, so I used our bed to iron our clothes on.

The fridge was supposed to be re-stocked daily but never was in the first room I stayed in, and was restocked only once in the second room.

WI-FI:

I purchased wifi cards which lasts 2 hours and when one ran out, I tried to purchase another on the 3rd day and I was told that they were all out and no one knew when more were going to be available. I traveled to one of the neighboring resorts to purchase an additional card. I was later told by one of the staff that the hotel did not re-new their contract and no new cards were arriving. Rumor or true, I think there should’ve been a sign to advise the guests.

HOTEL GROUNDS:

There was defiantly a lack of fans and/or air conditioning the main lobby, the restaurants, the theatre and bars.

The lights in the hallways were always dim which made it a little scary at night when my daughter and I were walking to our room.

The hotel grounds were beautiful! The pools clean with lots of seating both in and out of the sun. The poolside waiters were very friendly and helpful.

The beach was very nice, although filled with cigarette buds but that’s because of the guests, not the management.

Many of the washrooms did not have toilet seats, toilet paper and were dirty and wet. My daughter made a comment that the toilet paper was more like paper towels and the paper towels more like toilet paper. On the plus side, the soap smelled very nice.

ENTERTAINMENT:

For a chain of hotels that prides themselves as “family friendly”, there wasn’t any entertained that was family/kid friendly through out the day. We saw quite a few games that were definitely aimed at partying adults but none appropriate for kids.

The evening shows were amazing! We were entertained every night and I was very surprised and happy when the kids (including my daughter) were part of one of the shows. They learned a simple choreography and even had costumes! That was one of the highlights of the trip.

EXCURSIONS:
My daughter and I took a trip to swim with the dolphins. I was surprised to see that there were no child size life jackets!!! Life jackets were mandatory for all participants so my daughter was fitted with an adult XS which was still big on her and did not have the strap that connects between the legs. I had to adjust her life jacket a few times b/c she was slipping out of it.

KIDS CLUB:

I wanted my daughter to take part of the kids club, but after seeing one of the kid’s club staff carrying a small child out of the pool under her arm like a sack of potatoes, and the lack of supervision in the pool, I did not feel comfortable entrusting them with my daughter.

I’ve traveled to Cuba in the past and each time was pleasantly surprised by the staff…expect this time. Although I read through the reviews on here, I wanted to base my opinion on by own experience.

Overall, we made the best of it and it was a nice sun filled vacation. I think the hotel itself is beautiful but like any other, needs constant upkeep. I would defiantly say that the customer service was the worst part of the trip (along with the broken toilet seat) and ultimately their downfall.

I don’t believe we experienced the luxury and family friendly hotel we booked for.
I would not return to this hotel, let alone recommend this hotel to others.

Room tip: Ask for a room on the 4th floor
Date of stay: July 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank 735325annak
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Gerente at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded July 24, 2015

Dear Guest,
On behalf of the Management and the entire staff of IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul, we appreciate you had chosen our Hotel for your holidays; we regret that you have not fully enjoyed our Hotel, Your comments are really important to us to improve our services, and we are taking them into consideration to solve them
We are truly sorry about any inconveniences you might have had and We want to express our sincere apology for the difficulties you encountered during your stay, we regret that this situation might have affected your opinion about our hotel and our company our staff did a great effort to solve with the situation as best they could.
Sincerely,
Online Reputation Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 20, 2015

We were a group of 18 people
- Lack of maintenance in Standard Rooms
- 2 out of 6 rooms had to change room on the next day
- Staff seems to run all over the place for towels and either not change them or not put any in some rooms. In one occasion 3 towels were but in bathtub for replacement all mixed together and dirty, The maid put them back on the for use.
- Lack of hot water in most rooms for a few days, had to take cold shower half the times.
- Checkout, if needed you can get late check out, otherwise you need to go to the spa to shower before flying back, not ideal place

Food:
- Buffet - Very bad: Often no glasses for juice or even plates were missing. One morning 2 waitress refused to serve coffee because it was not their section. Pastas tasteless, in the morning almost more non morning food items. Omelettes were ok for breakfast, chicken and fish on the grill and the pizza but for the rest, not great at all. Juices ( orange made out of powder, others not good lack). Cleanliness of outside tables is disgusting, chairs full of birds sh...
Snack bar buffet: First day the 3 counters had food, end of week, just a small salad bar counter, so had almost had to fight to get pizza or chicken on the grill or burgers on the grill. Utensils often missing.
Cubain restaurant: Was excellent, Lobster tail was great and tasty. Italian restaurant, server was rude, did not want our teens to order regular menu, had to argue about it ( Iberostar, this is an all inclusive!!!) Fish was tasty at all, and beef weren't appreciated by most. Beef carpaccio was good. Japanese restaurant was great across the board.
Beach: Excellent and great beach, chairs Ok, Palapas, lack of maintenance, but notice they will be adding some news one to the right side of the beach.
Toilets; Wow we can deifnitely notice that property manager doesnt uses public bathrooms, especially by the pool snack bar were doors weren't closing, bathroom equipment broken dirty for most ones.
Beach Towels, seems like maids are responsible for the client to return them to the rooms, they were almost running after us for them.
Hallways, dirty plates with food were sometime lying there for 24 to 48 hours before being pick up by staff!
Front staff: Nice for most of them reply to our request in due time.

Date of stay: July 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Iberostar
1  Thank Macdar
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Gerente at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded July 21, 2015

Dear clients,

First of all I would like to thank you for choosing an IBEROSTAR resort for your holiday.

We apologize for all of the inconveniences you mentioned and we are very sorry that the service received was not up to the standards you expected and deserved.

We sincerely thank you for your comments. Please be assured that we will take them all into consideration, in order to improve our services and make IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul a better choice for our clients.

Best Regards

Online Reputation Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 18, 2015 via mobile

Wow! Great great place to stay if you ever think of going on vacation to Cuba it's an awesome fun exciting place to be if your going with family, friends, or that special someone ;) . Food is good, the workers always do there best looking to make you feel at home and it's just a beautiful hotel! The only thing I missed was free WiFi! XD haha but it's just a great place to go on vacation. So I recommend anyone who is going to Cuba! To go to the laguna Azul! #ArribaCuba #Cuba

Date of stay: July 2015
Trip type: Travelled with friends
4  Thank Saul V
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Gerente at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded July 19, 2015

Dear Guest,

The IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul Team would like to thank you for your recent visit to our Resort, and to share your moments with us.

It is a great honor to know that you enjoyed your vacation with us, with your nice comments about the workers in our team and the services what we offer, you give us more motivation to improve even more our services. Be sure that every comment of our clients is important to us and our team is constantly working to make our hotel and services even better.

It will be a pleasure for us to welcome you back soon, please do not hesitate to contact us to assist you even more.

Sincerely
Online Reputation Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 16, 2015 via mobile

I don't always believe the reviews I read online but felt it very necessary to write one on this resort. This was my 4th all inclusive and I've stayed at resorts rated 3.5 stars to 5 star hotels. This was my 2nd visit to Cuba and we have nothing good to say about this resort. This was also the viewpoint of many guests that were staying there the same time as us. From the moment we arrived, we asked for a room with a crib and an extra bed for my 3 year old son. We were told the room had both set up already which it did not. So we had to call reception at least 5 times before someone came up with them. We had no assistance with our luggage either. The Air conditioning barely worked enough to cool the hot room and the fan regulator was broken. We had three rooms at this resort and all were the same problem. Majority of the staff were not interested in providing any customer service anywhere on the resort. We did manage to find a few really good staff at the buffet but nowhere in comparison to other resorts we have been to. On one of the days, the resort had no running water for approximately 12 hrs during the day. With kids we had a big issue with using bathrooms on this day and being able to was sand and dirt off them before they went off to sleep. The cleaning service was atrocious. Most days there was a shortage of towels or bottled water or anything to restock the mini bar in the room. Most of the "clean" towels had stains and mould stains on them. One of the days we asked for the sheet to be changed as there was sand in the bed. We came back to just the bed being made and sheet not changed. The bed for my 3 year old was as hard as a rock so he had to sleep in our bed. The crib mattress was filthy with black stains and other stains all over it.

The buffet had the exact same items for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No variety on a daily basis. The meats freshly grilled in front of you were served absolutely uncooked on the inside because the grillers were in a rush to serve the long line ups of people. The orange juice seemed to have a different taste everyday which made us wonder what was in the orange juice!

The only good part to this resort was the pool and the beach but definitely not worth the money we spent to stay here.

Very disappointed in this resort and will most definitely never stay at an Iberostar resort again.

Date of stay: July 2015
Trip type: Travelled with family
10  Thank Natasha P
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Director General at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded July 17, 2015

"Dear clients,

On a behalf of the staff and management here at IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul we would like to thank you for your review. However, we feel sorry that our hotel was not up to your expectation. We assure you that improvement, in all our services are an ongoing process and our priority is guest satisfaction. We do hope, to have another opportunity in the near future, to make your holiday unforgettable. If you decide to give us another chance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Kind Regards,
Online Reputation Manager"

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 16, 2015

I'm going to cut to the chase; this resort is an absolute dump and not worth the money. Here is a quick summary of our groups experience: 3 days without hot water, intermittent black outs daily, no a/c in any common areas, bugs in rooms and buffet tables, no bath towels, no clean beach towels, stained sheets and hand towels, tv and phones did not work, glass sliding doors fell off tracks, closet sliding doors fell off tracks, shower head not working, keys had to be reset daily, 4 guests stuck in elevator including a baby, trip hazards from broken tiles throughout resort, light fixtures broken or without lamps, drain hair throughout pools, frequently ran out of staple foods such as lettuce and chicken, food was awful and made most sick, had to tip extra to track down bottled water, most staff arrogant, slow and rude, no toilet seats in public areas. The list can continue forever...

Room tip: Do not book here period.
Date of stay: July 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
11  Thank TOTravels2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Director D, Director General at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded July 17, 2015

"Dear clients,

On a behalf of the staff and management here at IBEROSTAR Laguna Azul we would like to thank you for your review. However, we feel sorry that our hotel was not up to your expectation. We assure you that improvement, in all our services are an ongoing process and our priority is guest satisfaction. We do hope, to have another opportunity in the near future, to make your holiday unforgettable. If you decide to give us another chance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Kind Regards,
Online Reputation Manager"

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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