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Reviews (1,445)
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Reviewed March 30, 2018

My husband and I stayed at the Sanctuary Grand Memories Varadero in Oct 2017 and Mar 2018, we returned because we thought it was a great resort.
The staff are all sincerely nice people and excellent at their job.
The manager Luz is awesome. Our butler Gertchel was amazing and I am sorry we left on her day off and could not say good bye. The ladies at the snack bar were very hard working and gracious.
All the restaurants had fantastic food except the one at the Sanctuary, the food could be improved. For breakfast and lunch it was great though and the staff were wonderful.
The food at the buffet is really good too, except it is a little noisy.
The grounds including the Grand Memories are beautiful and clean.
The room was clean with excellent maids.
The beach is awesome, I could only suggest a few more palapas are needed at the Sanctuary side.
I am looking forward to seeing the completion of the new bar near the beach.
Thank you to all the staff and we look forward to our return.

  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Lori P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director G, Manager at Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded March 31, 2018

Dear Lori,

Please receive a warm regard from all our team.

It has been such a huge pleasure to receive your compliments. Our team will be delighted once they read your wonderful comments. Thank you very much for recommending Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero to future guests. You have praised so many aspects, including food and staff, which are very important booking factors. Receive please our deepest gratitude because we are inspired by your positive feedback. Thanks for staying with us and thanks for those stays to come.

It will be such a huge pleasure to welcome you back my friend, so we could share more wonderful moments. Make sure you send us your booking details and preferences for your next year stay, we will be very glad to look after your time with us.

Best regards from our little paradise,

Luz H. Nava
Resident Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 30, 2018

We were at the Grand Memories section of this resort when it was managed by Riu three years ago. We really enjoyed our stay last time so we thought we would take it up a notch this time and stay at Sanctuary. Surprisingly the price was the same as it was three years ago.

During our visit we bounced between both Sanctuary and the main resort and here are the differences we noticed during our stay.

The food has noticeably improved this time around with better quality and more selection. The food at the Sanctuary a la carte restaurant was not that much better than the other a la carte restaurants. But the grilled lobster for lunch was fantastic!

The rooms/resort looked exactly the same. The main difference is all the signs now said Grand Memories instead of Riu. Our toilet in Sanctuary was leaking on 2 days. It was fixed promptly but who wants to step in toilet water in the middle of the night.

The service overall was still pretty good and I recognized quite a few faces from my visit 3 years ago. The service at the Sanctuary Bar was much better than the main resort and you were able to have civilized conversations with other guests.

Housekeeping was hit or miss despite tipping on a daily basis with a thank you note. They were not generous with the toilet paper and on most days we ran out.

The entertainment at the main resort was not as good this time. The nightly music in the main lobby was usually mumble rap played over a set of ipod speakers. The acts in the Cubana lounge, however, were quite lively.

Last time we were here there was a lot more live entertainment throughout the resort. They had the piano bar, nightly live music in the main lobby and a DJ. The saving grace was Sanctuary had live music twice a day in a more initiate environment so that made up for it.

The most noticeable difference between this visit and last visit was the towel game! I hate playing this game but if you don't you are going to lose every time.

The first day I went to the beach at 830am and could not find a seat with shade. I had to tip one of the guys who was working 3 CUC as he happened to be "saving" some seats. Keep in mind I had access to the Grand Memories section, the exclusive Diamond Club Section and the even more exclusive Sanctuary section and I could not find a spot at 830am. The beach was not busy at all, everything was saved with towels.

The second day I went to the beach at 730am. This time I found a seat in the shade but it was in second row so you could not really see the water. Again, there was no one lying in their chairs but there was a sea of blue towels.

The next day, just for giggles, I went to the beach at 630am. The sun was not even out yet and I had to use the flashlight on my phone to make it to the beach. When I got to the beach I was greeted by a Grand Memories employee to help me find my seat. I finally got a seat in the front row but I was still not even the first person there.

I did not experience this problem the last time I was at this resort and this was probably the worst thing about the trip. Management should implement a system of confiscating unattended towels or have the ability to reserve seats for a premium.

Room Tip: If you are in good shape get a room on the 3rd floor overlooking the pool
  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank BigCityLover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director G, Manager at Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded March 31, 2018

Dear Guest,

It is an honor for all the team that makes up the Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero family, to receive their excellent comments regarding their vacations. We are very happy to know that we were able to be part of special moments and we appreciate that the service of our Staff stands out. Rest assured that we will share all your words with them.

We also appreciate your feedback regarding the improvements that can be made in our service and activities, which we take very seriously.

We hope to hae the pleasure to pamper you one more time in our little paradise, guaranteeing the improvements in our service, as we always say, the satisfaction of our guests is our only wish.

Warm regards from Varadero,

Luz H. Nava
Resident Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 28, 2018

My wife and I just came back from a trip to The Sanctuary over the March Break. This is our second venture to this resort and we couldn’t be happier with the results. I’ve been to Cuba 9 times and this is definitely the best resort I’ve been to in Cuba. As this was our 2nd visit to the resort and we were celebrating our anniversary; the resort upgraded our room to a full suite. The room was beautiful and very comfortable.
The location is perfect, and the resort size is small, which leads to friendlier and a more peaceful experiences. It’s kind of attached to the Grand Memories, which is a huge but well-kept resort. You can go and experience their restaurants as it’s included, but we didn’t bother, not once. The food was that good at the Sanctuary.
The fact that this resort has no buffet and is all “a-la-carte” is fantastic. Their menu changes daily and the foods are not disappointing to say the least.
I would like to thank Lisianne and Yamaysi for all the wonderful hard work they do. You’ve truly touched our hearts and we appreciate your kind friendly dedication. And a shout out to Johan for taking care of us and being a friend. We miss you all and can’t wait to return next year at the same time. And we really hope to meet our excellent singer friend Orlando Perez (Casuso). If you get a chance to listen to this man, you’ll fall in love.
Don’t get all worked up about negative comments at this resort. Some people just can’t be satisfied and no matter what you do, they’ll still complain… and you all know the people I’m talking about. This place is highly recommended and there’s a reason it’s #1 on Tripadvisor.

Room Tip: I like being on the ground floor and we were right by the pool, so many conveniences
  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
7  Thank Steve_Watters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director G, Manager at Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded March 29, 2018

Dear Steve,

The Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero team would like to thank you for your super nice comments about our hotel, service and staff.
We are very happy to hear that you had a fun and exciting trip with us, our main goal is to satisfy our guests.
Our staff has received your comments and appreciates your effort, especially Lisianne and Yamaysi.


We are looking forward to see you soon and pamper you as you deserve.

Thanks for your reommendation to other TripAdvisor users.

Best regards,

Luz H. Nava
Resident Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 27, 2018 via mobile

I would like to thank miss Luz Nava for everything that she does for me, my room was amazing, this is my 4th time in this place and everytime that I come I found new things, everything here is amazing, I love the activities, Alex the guy that work as animator he is so good, the waitresses are amzing everywhere you go, Julio and Mr Valerio are doing big good changes in the this resort, confratulations, food & drinks were very good!!! I really recommend this place to everyone, I'm 100% sure that if you come you will.love it kike me

Stayed: March 2018
4  Thank George-Mora
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director G, Manager at Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded March 29, 2018

Our dear George,

It is my pleasure to receive your comment and your kind words, as always it has been a pleasure to be your host, thanks for trusting us your holidays one more time.

Looking forward to see you soon my friend,


Warm regards,

Luz H. Nava
Resident Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 27, 2018

Sanctuary rooms are a good size and fair. The restaurant in the sanctuary section ( adults only)was reasonably nice but the service couldn't of been any slower, three of us waited an hour for eggs and no one came to us to let us know a time frame. Waiters and waitresses just walked by with no concern knowing we've been there for a long time, funny thing is that it wasn't even busy making it even more frustrating. The whole week we were there the service in that particular restaurant was less than par unfortunately.
On a positive note Jorge Pino our butler was amazing,always making sure we were ok. It was eight of us having a 40th birthday for a dear friend and Jorge helped out with a private dinner and the cake making sure we were taken care of. His personal touch and attention to detail goes a long way. All eight of us from Toronto salute you Jorge!
A job well done. I would go back to Sanctuary Grand Memories because of people like Jorge Pinto!!! He deserves a 5star rating.

Room Tip: If your not going with kids. Stay at the sanctuary side adults only. Not to mention you get the premium booze
Stayed: March 2018, travelled with friends
3  Thank firlz p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director G, Gerente at Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded March 28, 2018

Dear Guest,

It is an honor for all the team that makes up the Sanctuary at Grand Memories Varadero family, to receive their excellent comments regarding their vacations. We are very happy to know that we were able to be part of special moments and we appreciate that the service of Jorge, as you mention he is avery important person in our team.

We extend our sincere apologies for the inconveniences that you have had with the service in some of our Restaurants; we continuously train our collaborators in order to give an excellent service to our visitors.

We hope to hae the pleasure to pamper you one more time in our little paradise, guaranteeing the improvements in our service, as we always say, the satisfaction of our guests is our only wish.

Warm regards from Varadero,

Luz H. Nava
General Manager

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