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Maria G
Toronto, Canada

Consider going elsewhere

2.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed Feb 24, 2024
Disappointed. Don't plan to return to Cuba. The resort is beautiful on the outside as is the lobby but the rooms/hallways need to be updated/painted. Mold in the washroom, saw cockroaches, broken pieces. Safe didn't work. Fridge didn't work and was empty. Had to ask for water. No towels upon arrival. They provided only 2 bath towels daily...no hand/face towels. Lights in the hallway were out and not replaced all week....very dark and had to use flashlight at night. One of the two main pools was empty all week. Construction on the beach. The noise and fumes were unbearable. This work should have been done during off-season. As for food, we were fortunate to have fresh eggs every day but only for fried eggs. For omelettes and other egg dishes, they used powered/dehydrated eggs. No coffee for 2 days. Alcoholic drinks and beer were a hit and miss. Lots of rice & beans but no potatoes. Great choice of bread but no butter. Rarely had dishes with beef and when they did it was more sauce/veggies than meat, including chicken. Snack bar was terrible...very little selection and ran out of food quickly. Service at buffet was incredibly slow. What a shame. Definitely not worth what I paid for.
Date of stay: February 2024
Room Tip: The beach is not very big. If you want to get a chair, make sure you reserve it early,...
Trip type: Travelled with family
1.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
2.0 of 5 bubblesService
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Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this review
Responded Feb 28, 2024
Dear Maria,
Dear Maria,
On behalf of the whole team we offer you our sincere apologies for not having been able to offer you the holiday you had hoped for.
We are working on the basis of your feedback to implement all the changes we can. We assure you that we will surprise you with a much better stay if you change your mind about visiting us again.
Kind Regards,
Quality Manager
Iberostar Laguna Azul
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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    Reviews (12,199)
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    All reviews lady gaga sexy nancy pizza main pool lobby bar a la carte restaurants fish japanese restaurant main buffet beautiful resort chicken quiet pool fries other resorts recommend this resort entertainment staff bring your own
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    41 - 46 of 12,199 reviews
    Reviewed February 24, 2024

    Get ready for an unforgettable experience! My Christmas and New Year's at Iberostar Laguna Azul in Varadero were nothing short of spectacular! From the moment I walked in, the explosive warmth of the staff, including the incredible entertainers like Yandy aka Candy Boy, Carlos, Joshua, Lázaro, KingKong, Ernesto, and sexy Alex, just to name a few, created an unforgettable experience. As a solo traveler, I never felt alone, thanks to their engaging activities and welcoming energy. The strong connections I formed with everyone, especially the entertainment team, made this one of the best experiences of my life. The plenty and variety of food, including fish, meat, veggies, desserts, and drinks, were delightful. Daily events kept me busy, and a special shoutout to Marino (entertainment manager) for organizing everything seamlessly.

    Moreover, the rooms were always impeccably clean and tidy. Whenever I needed something, the staff attended to it right away, adding an extra layer of comfort to my stay. Laguna Azul is a must-go-to resort that deserves every bit of its 5-star rating. Can't wait for my next visit!

    Date of stay: December 2023
    • Trip type: Travelled solo
      • Value
      • Location
      • Service
    Thank Aaliah B
    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.
    Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded February 27, 2024

    Dear Aaliah,
    We are delighted to learn that your experience in our hospitality was so special. We hope to welcome you back in the near future.
    Kind Regards,
    Quality Manager
    Iberostar Laguna Azul

    Report response as inappropriate
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
    Reviewed February 22, 2024

    We have been to this resort approx 7 times. In the past we looked past the quirks such as last years toilet paper shortage and the usual broken elevators - because overall we made things livable and made exceptions and the beach was worth it

    I have to say this was the worst vacation I have ever been on in my life. I will put this in point form:

    DRINKS
    - No coffee
    - no soft drinks
    - no juice other than papaya and mango
    - no limes or lemons
    - I don't drink beer, so drank water for most of the vacation.

    FOOD
    - most days they used powdered eggs - no fresh eggs available
    - the food, which I normally can always find something I like, - I can only describe it this time as pig slop - and I don't say that lightly. Only 1/3 of the food available from our experience in past years. Hardly any meat and the meat that was there was shredded and swimming in sauces with other mush. I asked to speak to the Chef but he wouldn't come and talk to me.
    - 24 hour snack bar - they only make 3 things, hot dogs hamburgers, pizza, but they would only make 1 item at a time. To avoid the buffet, I tried the snack bar and got a barely warmed steamed hot dog put in a hamburger bun. The snack bar is not willing to make even the minimal items they offer.

    RESORT
    - not 1 elevator in hotel was working - and we were on 5th floor.
    - Lighting - in the common outside area, lights are always burnt out making it very dangerous to walk at night.
    - Lighting - the huge lights in the lobby look like they have never been cleaned, there are so many dead insects in them, they appear black.
    - the main pool was emptied of water for repair. In the week we were there, we saw no work being done on this at all.

    Also every year, the resort removes items that they previously offered. From when we first started staying there - there are no longer coffee makers in the room, no robes in the room, no appreciation event for repeat customers, no soft drinks or beer in the room fridge, no bottle of rum in the room for repeat customers. Not essential - but worth mentioning.

    BEACH
    CONSTRUCTION EQUIPMENT ?? We come to this resort for the beautiful beach, but this time, they decided to do construction work on the beach in Feb prime time with road equipment - full size front end loader, back hoe, grader which operated must of the day spewing diesel fumes and noise for 4 of the 7 days of our stay. 1 day, they quit working and just parked the construction equipment on the beach in between the loungers and the ocean completely blocking the view. This should have been done in off season.

    I have totally lost my trust in this resort and in Cuba. Vacations cost a lot of money, I will never return because I will never take the chance that this will happen again. I am not sure why there are shortages of some things like coffee - in a country that produces coffee, but the choice to have heavy construction equipment on the beach in Feb prime vacation time, instead of off-season is a management decision, they obviously do not care if their guests have an enjoyable vacation.

    We could hardly wait to leave and go home.

    Date of stay: February 2024
    • Trip type: Travelled with family
      • Value
      • Location
      • Service
    6  Thank Anola64
    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.
    Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded February 23, 2024

    Dear Anola,
    First of all, we would like to thank you for once again entrusting us with your stay in Varadrero.
    The hotel management and the responsible departments are working with a strong commitment to address all the solutions within our reach as soon as possible. Your loyalty and preference is very important to us. We will do our best to show you our progress on your next visit. Our staff will be delighted to have another opportunity to welcome you back.
    Kind Regards,
    Quality Manager
    Iberostar Laguna Azul

    Report response as inappropriate
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
    Reviewed February 21, 2024

    I have been going to this resort for a few years on February 12, 2024 myself my two nephews and my sister all took a trip there and we told the boys how great this place was the food everything and it was that’s why we went there after year boy did we get shocked the service was bad dishes were broken. They still serve with them chips and and cups no more water and pop and beer in your fridges. They serve you filtered water holes in their ice cubes and it’s meant to be safe to drink the resort had no pop the food was really nasty, nothing to do they’re just into money now everybody has a cell phone or all dress well so what a fakeness going on however, we complained for three days so they transferred us to another iberostsr and it was OK. Food was eatable. They had drinks after a group of people complain for three days. They then started getting pop , I will never go to Cuba ever again in my life it’s not what it used to be like they’re just out for themselves money and a lot of scamming and a lot of thieving. It was very sad to see so my advice to you is if you wanted good trip, go anywhere else, but Cuba or any iberostar chain resort in any Caribbean country or you gonna get scammed that’s The discos are not opened up the shows that they used to do are at par some of my really boring. I’m really amazed that it’s a family resort and you have no soft drinks for the kids nothing to do but yet you’ll serve glasses with chips on them, say the kid cut himself there’s no safety there’s no concern for the people that are spending their money to go to this resort just no care and they’re extremely rude and never used to be like this so please don’t waste your money. going to this place ( man) Paul and if you go to Market Street you see a lot of cops most of the shops there are closed I believe that the travel industry knows about this but doesn't tell us the truth so we can make a decision for ourselves money hungry that's they do this see those two nephews I was talking about they just lost there mom my sister at 59 and they live with me know and this was there first trip out of Canada first time on a plane me and my sister wanted to take there mind off of what happened because they were dealing with a lot so we were telling them about the amazing resort Iberostar grand azul they couldn't wait to see it one nephew didn't leave his room for three days we ate bread like everyone else we ran into people that had the same disappointment they two were long time customers so please don't waste your time

    Date of stay: February 2024
    • Trip type: Travelled with family
      • Value
      • Location
      • Service
    2  Thank I5148OSpaulp
    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.
    Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded February 27, 2024

    Dear guest,
    On behalf of the entire Team, we would like to express our regret that we were unable to exceed your expectations on this occasion.
    We have taken care to share each of your comments with the hotel management and relevant departments in order that all the investigations and changes can be made as soon as possible and our quality standards can be rechecked.
    Safeguarding your preference is very important to us. We hope you will give us the opportunity to surprise you with our progress in the near future.
    Kind Regards,
    Iberostar Laguna Azul

    Report response as inappropriate
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
    Reviewed February 21, 2024 via mobile

    If you have questions I have answers.
    The woman who reviewed before me mostly said it all. Beach beach beach and warm friendly people is what it’s all about. If you are easy going and easy to please and don’t require gourmet food, this resort is just fine. Besides with the shortages now and talking to people who stayed at more expensive resorts, the food there wasn’t any better. They pay more for decor, newness of resort etc. We stayed in building 20 top floor (Relax section)with ocean view from our balcony. It was nice to have special access to a separate restaurant and pool. No elevators work at this resort so any mobility issues book ground floor. Thank you to the pool/beach staff engaging us. Our favorite night was the beach party. The shows were pretty good even though short. Especially the magic show. Well done. if you require coffee every day bring your own. And just bring some of your favorite snacks and soda if you require mix. You won’t starve in Cuba that’s for sure but you will definitely miss the beach and ocean when you leave. This resort was always improving the beach for its guests and getting chairs was never an issue. Did not have to wake up at the crack of dawn to reserve.

    Room tip: Relax area was worth the few extra $. Bring your own favorite snacks and soda. Bring coffee.
    Date of stay: February 2024
    Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    Thank 462NatalieM
    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.
    Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2024

    Dear guest,
    Thank you for sharing this helpful feedback with other travelers. We will be honored to have you back in the near future.
    Kind Regards,
    Quality Manager
    Iberostar Laguna Azul

    Report response as inappropriate
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
    Reviewed February 14, 2024

    This place is very run down.
    I was put in the wrong section for what I paid for. They made it a hassle to change.
    When I checked in, they did give me my wifi password, times that anything was happening (hard to find the info), etc. I had to go back and wait 30 minutes for them to print out my info.
    None of the elevators worked and my room was missing light bulbs.
    The bathtub was difficult to get in and out of, the shampoo dispenser was at the sink and the hand soap in the shower (mounted to the wall). They only gave you bath towels…no hand towels or face cloths. You have to pay a $15US deposit for the beach towel (each). Watch out for the one towel guy as he is willing to put on his own show for you.
    It says it has a mini fridge but they don’t put anything in it. My balcony door would not lock so I shoved a chair into the track.
    The largest pool didn’t have any water in it.
    As the days went on, they were running out of more and more things. No pop, no mint for mojitos, no mix for pina colada or margaritas, no eggs…one day, they said no ice!
    You have to search for the place to book your a la carte ….it is a single person in a back room and the wait can be forever.
    The shows are 30 minutes and average. The singing was better than the dancing.
    Many bars close at 4 and then you are waiting for a single person trying to make drinks for everyone (especially difficult since he has to keep saying “no” to everyone as they don’t have the needed ingredients).
    The buffet food was horrible. Things were not labeled at all or incorrectly. I have a food allergy and more than once I found seafood in dishes that were labeled vegetarian or chicken.
    I was a solo traveler. Getting service at times was very difficult and frustrating.
    The relax section was quite nice. Would have been better with some more service.

    Room tip: Take bug spray. Don’t echange for local currency, they want US, EURO, CAD. The hop on, hop off bus, some only cash, some only credit cards.
    Date of stay: February 2024
    • Trip type: Travelled solo
      • Value
      • Location
      • Service
    1  Thank Heather G
    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.
    Bibiana Carbonell Castelo, Other at Iberostar Origin Laguna Azul, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2024

    Dear Heather,
    On behalf of our Team, we would like to say how sorry we are that we were unable to provide you with an experience that met your expectations.
    As part of Iberostar family on this beautiful island, the opinions of our guests are an important reference for our daily operations. We will do everything in our power to win you over with the personalized service we work so hard to provide.
    We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience and hope that you will give us the opportunity to surprise you with positive changes in the near future.
    Kind Regards,
    Quality Manager
    Iberostar Laguna Azul

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