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Angela P
Arundel, United Kingdom

Brand new hotel, done to a high standard. Beautiful beach.

5.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed Jun 12, 2014
Stayed for 10 nights. Beautiful large, clean room with balcony. Massive bed. Walk in shower and separate bath. Everyday received 2x beers, 2xcoke and bottle of water in room which was a nice touch. Food in the buffet was plentiful, with freshly cooked stirfrys, fish and pasta every night with waitress service for drinks. Did however start to become a bit repetitive. There are 3 a la carte restaurants that can be booked. Oriental one was the best but very small portions. Live entertainment on every night was a bit hit and miss, but still entertaining. The highlight of the resort is the beautiful beach a short walk from the main hotel, sand, palm trees, clear blue water with free kayaks. Only complaint is that the sun loungers were not very comfy. Also take mossie spray - they eat you alive!!!
Date of stay: June 2014
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this review
Responded Jun 13, 2014
Dear “Angela H” from Brighton (U.K), I would like to thank you first for sharing with us your lovely comments concerning our property on Trip advisor since it is so important for us to receive your feedback concerning your stay at the Meliá Marina Varadero.
I am glad to see that you specially loved our beach area with its crystal clear blue water as well as the quality of our food and the quality of our entertainment shows.
I truly hope that you will come back again despite of the distance in our lovely island of Cuba and I send you my warmest regrads from Varadero.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 12, 2014 via mobile

Well firstly - bring cash. Everything is cash. 8% exchange on the CUC for the Canadian money. Note -18% on US currency. Also Rogers does not have a deal with Cuba cellular company so the rates are $4 per min. $15 per MB and .75 a text.

So the resort is at the end of varadero so it's 20 mins to town. We have a 5 and a 3 year old and the staff were the best part for us at the resort. The kids club was so enjoyable for the kids and the nightly disco made the kids night. 8:30-9:00pm. The lady who ran the disco and the kids club was A+++ and deserved all the money in the world. The kids did a special dinner and activity night which was done in the buffet and kids club.

The food was better as the week went on. Some staff are great while others don't seem to want to be there. It's sad because they don't make any money other than the tips they make so top lots if you can.

Overall all it was a good time and we have been to Equador, Mexico 3x and Cuba once. We are off to Jamaica in two weeks so we can compare that trip with the others.

Date of stay: June 2014
1  Thank 154919Michaelt29
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.
Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded June 13, 2014

Dear “Angela H” from Brighton (U.K) it is always good to receive such a nice feedback from our friends from England who are choosing more and more often our resort to spend their holidays in Cuba. I want to thank you for reporting your constructive comments on Trip advisor and so sharing with us your feedback.
I am happy to see that you truly enjoyed our kid’s club as well as the mini disco for the kids and I will transmit your nice words to our staff and particularly to the lady in charge of the kids.
I am also glad that you appreciate our food quality and I will make sure that we identify the few employees who were not as friendly as the others which is, as you say, a pity.
It is good to see that, for your first time in Cuba, you left with a good impression on our resort and the island and we hope to see you soon back to the sunny Cuba.
Best regards.

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Reviewed June 9, 2014

We returned home a week ago from Melia Marina. We have been to Cuba several times before, but this was our first to the Melia Marina. As everyone has said the hotel is fairly new, which was one reason I chose this hotel. The room was nice....loved the large shower! Had an air conditioning issue one night (squealing very loud) at 3 am or 4 am...went to the lobby to let them know and they promptly had a repair man at our room in about 10 minutes. Thank you for fixing it so promptly. I agree with other comments the furniture is already starting to show wear.

Food: I know everyone has a different opinion when it comes to food...some people are more picky than others. As for my daughter (25) and I (we are not super picky eaters) we found it hard finding things to eat at the buffet. My husband eats anything so he always found something. My biggest complaint is that the food was NEVER hot. I think it has been an ongoing problem with the warming trays. To me this is unacceptable for a "5" * hotel. Luckily we were able to eat at the a la carte's several nights, where the food was much better.

Beach: What can I say....it was heaven. My favourite place to be. The water was calm, warm and crystal clear!! The hotel wasn't busy when we were there so there was never a problem getting a palapa. The walk to the beach was a non issue....not far at all.

We found all the staff at the hotel to be very friendly and helpful. I was also very impressed that the manager (director) of the hotel, Gildas was always walking around the hotel meeting guests and checking on things. We had the opportunity to speak with him a couple of times....very nice man.

Overall we had a very nice stay. Would like to see the hotel in a couple of years when the trees and shrubs have grown.

Room tip: We booked basic room which was supposed to be pool view...were given a marina view room instead. We were on the 4th floor which had a good view. Personally I think I would have preferred the pool view, but both sides are quite nice.
Date of stay: May 2014
Trip type: Travelled with family
3  Thank Jake050
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.
Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded June 10, 2014

Dear “Jake050” from Ontario (Canada), thank you so much for reporting your nice comments on Trip Advisor after your stay at the Melia Marina Varadero.
I am really happy to see that you had a very good time in our hotel. As you said when comes the time to talk about the food quality at the buffet, our guests give always different opinions. In what the temperature of the food on the buffet, we finally found a solution which shouldn’t take too long to be implemented. We just ordered the type of heating lamps we need to add to the buffet which should arrive in a question of weeks for the pleasure of our customers.
On another hand, I thank you for recommending our “a la carte” restaurants as well as the beauty of our beach and my presence on the floor talking to my guests.
We hope that you will come back soon to visit us in the friendly island of Cuba. Warmest regards.

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Reviewed June 3, 2014

Our first trip after marriage and it was quite memorable. The resort is new and it is very well maintained. Beach is at walkable distance (5~10min) from most of the rooms and there is small shuttle to beach very very often. Resort beach was clean however pool was a bit crowded and you have to get up early to sit under the shade. Room, lobby and restaurant services were great. The only complain we had was with regards to food. Not a great selection at the buffet and quality of food is average (line ups by the grill were long as well). La carte were average as well. But the restaurant by beach has good food and so does the one by the pool. But overall it was a good relaxing vacation.

Room tip: We stayed by pool side room (1465) and it was quiet after 6:30 pm. Marina side rooms can be noisy as it was overlooking the entertainment area however all the entertainment finishes at 10:30 -11:00.
Date of stay: April 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank OneLuvLee
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.
Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded June 4, 2014

Dear « Leother”, I will always thanks so much our guests who take the time to report their impression on our resort on Trip Advisor.
I am glad to read that you had a very good time in our resort and that you particularly enjoyed the comfort of your room as well as our services. Concerning the food we are about to change soon our kitchen brigade by getting two European chefs and I am sure that this will contribute to change the quality of our buffet.
We hope to see you soon back to the Meliá Marina Varadero and meantime I send you my best regards from the friendly island of Cuba.

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Reviewed June 3, 2014

We stayed a week in the hotel after a trip to Havana. On the whole we had a fabulous time marred by the eating arrangements for us (but that is probably a personal thing).
The hotel is well located with lovely views from both sides with the marina on one side and the pool and beach from the other. It is exceptionally clean and well kept and the rooms are a good size and well furnished although sadly with not very good quality furniture which already shows signs of wear which is a shame. There is a good balcony to sit on (even if it rains!) and the bathroom is very nice with both a large shower and bath. The maid service is great and the room was spotless.

The staff are wonderful, very helpful, friendly and always smiling.

It is a very short stroll to the beach which is beautiful with plenty of chairs and umbrellas. The swimming pool area is very pretty but it will be better of course when the trees etc grow up around it . It definitely needs some more shade and umbrellas. The mattresses on the sunbeds are almost worn out already (no idea why that is) and are not made from water proof material so if it rains or someone quite naturally sits on them from the pool they stay wet which is most unpleasant. They really need replacing already.
.
The disappointment for us was that we had to eat our evening meal quite often in the Buffet Restaurant which is absolutely not our idea of spending an evening. It's just like eating in the works canteen but worse. Screaming children and people loading their plates with food (we saw one couple with SEVEN dinners on the table for the two of them).The food there was good for breakfast, not too bad for lunch and evening.The salad bar and the sweets were very good, but the dishes being kept hot were only warm and very uninviting so that only left grilled fish , meat or pasta all of which had long queues. This meant that as a couple you couldn't even eat your meal together. We so didn't want to eat there that on the first night we went to the restaurant on the harbour where you have to pay but although the food was OK we were the only people in there the whole time so we didn't repeat the experience!

Other hotels we have been to have had an open policy for the a la carte restaurants. Here it was very limited and the most annoying thing of all is that they were deliberately kept half empty all the time which restricted the booking even more! It also ended up with not much atmosphere as sometimes there were just one or two couples left dining. The food in the ones we did manage to get into was good especially for us the Asian restaurant.
The drinks served everywhere were good EXCEPT for the entire week I was unable to have my drink of choice (a gin and tonic) as there was no tonic. Always for both drinks and food the excuse is "well it's Cuba" and to a point I understand that but other hotels in the same resort had tonic so why not ours?

The other food issue is the beach restaurant which is set in a lovely spot with great staff but poor food! I ordered "catch of the day" and was served a frozen piece of fish in breadcrumbs caught presumably in the freezer. The salad bar and sweet counter here is also very limited which is a great shame as they could really make something special out of this restaurant. There is really no reason why they can't serve a bigger salad bar and sweet choice plus perhaps have a Bar-B-Q. This isn't " just Cuba" it is the hotel's choice to serve what it does. The pool restaurant could also benefit from the same sort of makeover. I appreciate you have to serve something like school dinners for those who want it and the children but it could be so much better.

Would we go back? Actually yes we would as overall it was a lovely place to be but for us it was spoiled by the evening meal choices.

Date of stay: May 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank sanssouci1948
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.
Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded June 4, 2014

Dear « sanssouci1948 » from Andover (U.K), thank you so much for reporting on Trip Advisor your impression concerning your stay at the Meliá Marina Varadero.
I am glad to see that, overall, you had a very good time during your holidays in our establishment and I thank you for highlighting the friendliness of our staff, true ambassadors of the Cuban hospitality, as well as the comfort of your room.
I regret that the quality of our food was not up to your expectation since, in Cuba, we have to deal with the local, available and seasonal food and it will be very difficult to compete with the variety of products you may find in your lovely country. However we will still continue working hard in order to improve this part of our services.
Thank you for recommending so highly our hotel and we hope, as you say, to see you back soon in our establishment.
Best regards from the sunny island of Cuba.

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Reviewed June 2, 2014

Service was excellent in all areas of the hotel and the resort was extremely clean. The rooms were pleasant with great views and the food was the best we've experienced in Cuba. The beach is stunning and the pool provides a nice alternative. Staff was more than accommodating towards our requests. The spa was an added bonus which I recommend if you're looking to be spoiled.

Date of stay: April 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Craig E
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.
Gildas_Renaux, Director General at Melia Marina Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded June 3, 2014

Dear “Craig E” from Toronto (Canada), I thank you very much for taking the time to report on Trip advisor your lovely comments concerning the Meliá Marina Varadero.
I am glad to see that you definitely enjoyed so much your stay amongst us and I thank you for highlighting the quality of our food as well as the friendliness of our staff and the awesome service in our SPA.
Your short but straight comments will definitely convince our readers to try our resort upon their next trip in Varadero.
On our side we will be waiting for you to come back and I send you my warmest regards from the sunny island of Cuba.

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