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“Good first experience to cuba”

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Melia Peninsula Varadero
Ranked #30 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Reviewed 6 October 2013

My first trip to cuba was at the Tryp hotel, now called Melia Peninsula Varadero back in 2011. We went with our daughter, at the time she was not even 2 years old. We had asked for a room as far away from the noise and pool, and on the second or third floor. Upon our arrival, we waited for a long time for someone to take us to our room, but when they didn't show up after 25 minutes, we decided to walk and figure it out on our own. When we found our room, we were livid. Our room was not only on the first floor, but it was in the building closest to the pool, and all you heard was the bass from the music. Needless to say that with a toddler who naps and sleeps early, this was not going to work. We called reception and they changed our room to one slightly further but on the third floor, which was better.
The beach was beautiful, the people very friendly. Every time my daughter walked on the path, a gardener would give her a flower. Very sweet gesture.
The restaurant by the beach was very good, and offered nice choices if you didn't want to go all the way back to main restaurant for lunch.
Now, almost 3 years later, we decided to go back. Other than the room fiasco , which was solved, we had an overall good experience. This time we will try the elegance package, and we are hoping for better accommodations.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Monique7405
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director Comercial at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 24 October 2013

Dear Monique:

Thanks a lot for your review. I have taken note under your booking since you are returning customer. We hope to reach your expectations such like we did last time.

The hotel has now a new Lobby and more services as Meliá brand, so you will enjoy your Holidays as one of the

À cet heure-la, au plaisir,

Sergio Jesús Martínez
Sales Manager

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Reviewed 3 October 2013

I read lots of reviews before visiting the Melia Peninsula Varedero & was left thinking, ' eh a holiday is what you make it'.
The Hotel was having a substantial ammount of renovation work done to it when we arrived, (& still is) shame on First Choice for not telling us of this when we booked. It would have made a big difference in choosing this destination with them had we known. Therefore there was no working swimming pool, only 2 out of 4 restaurants were open, they were completing re-roofing the main buildings, the reception was been re-disigned & moving, painting & refurbishing of several accomodation blocks etc etc.
Michael (the rep) did offer us a down grade from this so called 5 star to a 3 star. (really, I don't think so Michael). He then offered a £70 per person gesture of good will, off, any trip we wanted to take. By the way we were going to take a trip anyway & would have gladly paid the full ammount. But we decided to take the good will offer & book our trip to Havana, which we paid an extra £130 for. The week before Michael offered another couple a bottle of Rum for the same inconvenience's!?! I guess we got lucky....
Now the Hotel is very nice, our room was very spacious & pleasant & was cleaned daily to a very good standard. We were right near the beach which was beautiful, like what you would expect from a Caribbean Island. It is kept in very good order & is looked after by the beach guys & the Security people.(so we did'nt feel pestered by locals trying to sell their ware) Just lovely, & if you're looking for a beach Holiday you would most certainly enjoy the beach in Varedaro.
The gardens are gorgeous & well cared for. Credit to the Melia for their gardens!
Food in the Melia....O dear, shockingly awful! I'm sorry but it is. I would'nt want to put anyone off from going to this Hotel but their food is the worst I have ever had in my travels over seas. I'm not sure why, but it's freezing cold ALL THE TIME. They really can't have any temperature controls in place at all. Although the Swiss Manager did go round each morning & stir the beans. In our country we have controls in place for a reason, maybe they need to learn from our standards & then 4 out of the 6 English people would'nt have had stomach problems, & I can only speak for myself but I have come home & had to go to the Doctors were I have been told I have eaten or drank some kind of bacteria which has made me ill for 5 days.
You have to queue for any fresh meat you want to have cooked, & for most of the time we just did'nt feel like we should have to stand in a bloody queue & wait for a unaccomodating chef to cook our meat. So we did with out meat most evenings.
The biggest regret we have is making a phone call. Don't please! It will cost you an arm & a leg.
I wanted to make a phone call from reception, I was encourged to make it from my room. (Big Mistake on my part) I made 2 calls, seriously lasting no more than 5 minutes for both. When we went to pay they charged us for 17 minutes, a total cost of £48. So we did what the Manager tells us all to do in his replies to people who make reviews here on trip advisor & complain. But it will make no difference if you do complain, because they do what is known Universally & simply say SORRY! & then you will still have to pay up or you might not be able to leave the country.
British people are more than happy to pay for what they use, have, good service etc but they do not like to be ripped off Melia Peninsula.
However this review is only my view, holidays are what you make them! Having said that we won't be going back anytime soon. SORRY

Room Tip: Ask for a room nearer to the beach rather than the where the entertainment is going on.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Boroguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 24 October 2013

Dear Valued Guest:

We are very grateful for sharing your opinions with others and your feed-back about our services, which are always welcome as a chance to improve the service we offer.

Deeply sorry known that you were unable to enjoy a pleasant stay with us. Your remarks were discussed with the heads of each Department involved to guarantee that our guest’s wishes and requests are fulfilled efficiently.
I hope to have the satisfaction to welcome you at Meliá Península Varadero in the future, and show you all the improvements done in the Lobby, pools and services.

Cordial greetings.

Frederick Andersen

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Reviewed 1 October 2013

this was our second trip to this resort, and we had just as great a time as the first. the staff and management are so very friendly and accommodating and will go out of their way to help you. We met many great people at the resort like Damian at the Cuba house, and Yasar from the entertainment staff, and Yuri a life guard. These people and many others made our stay much more interesting, getting to know them and their stories were some of the best memories to make. Cuba people are so warm and full of heart, we now have made life long friends. And yes even though there were some minor renovations at the resort, we hardly noticed. There were so many other activities to enjoy that we didn't even notice. Especially the Cuba day Carnival... WOW ! so much fun, all that wonderful Cuban food and deserts, dancing and singing.... you cant help but have fun at such a place that puts so much emphasis on customer satisfaction.
Thank you so much for yet another great vacation, we look forward to many more,
and a special thank you to Sergio Martinez who went above and beyond when a situation back home came up, he made sure we had access to what we needed to settle the matter till we got back home. And as well for the special VIP treatment for returning guests.... Thank you !!
This was a 10+ vacation !!

Room Tip: we loved to be close to the beach,
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Lisa_D1967
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director Comercial at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 2 October 2013

Dear Lisa:

We are so pleased to read your message. The whole management enjoyed it a lot since we have a special commitment with the quality and guest satisfaction. As you know, we had a renovation program in the Hotel during your stay, it is necessary to keep our standards, but the most appreciated issue in your review is the way you have noticed other values of our Resort, as friendly staff, entertainment, product and management. We appreciate it.

Thanks for taking your time to write down this comments and letting us know your satisfaction. The greatest news is you want to come over back and, of course we are looking forward to welcoming you at Meliá Península’s family next holidays.

Best regards,

Sergio Jesús Martínez
Sales manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 October 2013

I stayed at this hotel last year in April, and although originally we were going to stay at a different hotel closer to Varadero, due to overbooking, they placed us in this amazing hotel. I was first concerned about the distance to the center, but I should not have worried. We had such a great time at the hotel that we hardly went out. It was my 4th time and definitely it was the best hotel I had stayed at. The landscape was breathtaking, the many gardeners made sure that all looked good. Our maid was really nice too and she kept the room spotless. Food was fresh and varied. I can not say a bad word about the hotel or the facilities!

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank vidainbrussels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 2 October 2013

Dear guests:

Thank you very much for your refreshing comments! It was a pleasure to read you and to share your joy!

We are very well concentrated on your needs here at Meliá. We know that every guest is different and that is why it is important for us to know your preferences in order to satisfy them. Your satisfaction is the only purpose of our staff. If we have reached it, we did our job. It all comes down to you! We would not be who we are without you!

We very much appreciate you taking the time to give us your opinion, dear guests. Even greater news is that you will be back to join us!

We certainly look forward to welcoming you back at Meliá Península Varadero, where you will be always spoilt!

Best regards,

Frederick Andersen

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Reviewed 23 September 2013

Although we got off to a less than stellar start to our vacation, due to unexpected renovations and repairs to the hotel we were won over by the exceptional level of friendly and professional service levels of the Cuban staff. The grounds of this hotel are beautifully kept and are truly an oasis. We chose it because we did not want the typical highrise hotel environment. If you are travelling as a family, this environment is designed for you with special emphasis in the children's pool area. The beach was fantastic, clean white sand (which will be pristine once they begin to rake the discarded cigarette butts from it, however, this is just the way it is in a country where so many smoke) We don't smoke but we managed to look around that problem around the insensitivity of of smokers. The Japanese and French restuarants were the better of the four a la carte offerings. The serving staff in all though, as through out the entire location, were exceptional! The room was very clean and current (remember you are in Cuba which is not a wealthy country in of itself so please be kind in your expectations ie. tv stations and western levels of comfort overall) If you are going here please be sure to seek out the entertainment staff who will help to make your stay even better! Canadians are loved by the Cubans as they say that we have the same heart. During our two week stay the hotel was undergoing some minor renovations, however, it was quite clear that these will bring it to a 5 star rating quite soon. Each area has musical entertainment throughout the day. The general buffet, although plentiful and with some excellent fare, does want for flavour. If you get the chance please venture to Havana and eat some real cuban fare which is rich in flavour. Havana is a must see but be prepared for the lack of oppulence. This is part of the overall wonder of Havana. It is rich with life, character and soul around every corner in the old quarter. If you are a photographer be prepared to take hundreds of great shots of life here. I went horse back riding in Varadero, and would not suggest it. I ride at home here in Canada and this will only upset horse lovers as per the condition of the animals. The Beatles Bar in Varadero was worth a drink or two, we heard that it was really good on the Sunday night whent he live band was playing. Of course the 1950's cars (although many are patched together understandably) are wonderful. The bus to town is the Hop On Hop Off 5 pesos for all day, double decker ride and worth the money. Advice, take the Red bus that you get from the road outside of the hotel grounds rather than the Blue one that comes right to the door. The Red is faster as it does not stop at every hotel on the route. Just remember that you must return on the colour of bus that you first left on. Or even better still, go down to Varadero on the bus and come back in the 1950's Convertible Cab. If you are into the Dolphin swim, you may want to check the location in Varadero out before you decide. The Varadero Dolfinium is no on the ocean and looks less than appealing. No one came back gushing about how great it was in this particular location. There are other options so you may want to explore them. Enjoy and our advice is to be sensitive to the people, they are very well educated, thoughtful and welcoming so please ask them questions, leave tips (1 peso = about 1 dollar and since they make from 20 to 40 per month on average as pay, 1 peso will go along way) They also enjoy other items that we don't consider a luxury such as soap, shampoo, body wash, toothpaste, tooth brushes, pens, candy (but be careful the heat melt them easily), a quick trip to the dollar store before you leave will bring pleasure to many a cuban). Lead with your heart and your vacation will be wonderful! Bon Voyage

Room Tip: Ask if you may please look at your room first. The center of the area such as in the 2400's wer...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank 2CubawithLove
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director Comercial at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 29 September 2013

Dear client:

We appreciate your review from the nickname 2Cubawithlove. It is really refreshing when you read it and also empathizes some important characteristics of our country and people, such as warm service, friendly staff, beautiful gardens, tropical environment.

Our Management team is taking on count your comments about cigarettes on the sand; we shall enforce the communication at the beach. Thank for your idea.

You have appreciated our entertainment staff and our family area; it is one of the most important experiences we want to share with our clients, since we are opting to be recognized as a family resort. I hope you can join us on the near future and enjoy next holidays in Meliá Península Varadero, with all the refurbishment done. We are looking forward to welcoming back!!

Best regards,

Sergio Jesús Martínez
Sales Manager

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Reviewed 21 September 2013

My two children (aged 12 and 15), husband and I have recently returned from our 7 day trip to Cuba where we stayed at Melia Pennisula Varadero. This was our first time to Cuba. After reading some reviews in July we were very concerned about our trip to this hotel. I will start off by saying this is a 4.5 star in Cuba but in Canada’s rating system it’s more like a 3.5. Here’s a detailed review about our stay in the end you can be the judge. I should add my husband can speak Spanish so can my daughter and we left many tips and gifts throughout our stay.

Cuban Airport- Disgusting service, we arrived late at night and you have to get your picture taken before picking up baggage. We didn’t know we had to go one at a time, and the women screamed at us and looked like she hated her job. She didn’t even speak just rolled her eyes and expected you to know what she was talking about. Big turn off for me, these are the first people you see and you do not feel welcome.

Check in- Very easy quick check in, friendly staff, got a great room near the beach and pool.

Rooms- We had a room on the second floor our room was very clean, spacious, no problems with uninvited guests and the maid did a great job of cleaning our room every day, making the bed and our mini fridge was always restocked. (2 beers,2 cans of pop, a water bottle) There was never a shortage of towels and toilet paper.

Beach- We went to the beach a lot, it was unusually wavy when we were there but the water was still warm. The sand does have some broken sea shells, I highly recommend wearing sandals. As for the lounge chairs and shade umbrellas, you can always find some before lunch but after that it gets busy.

Food- IF YOU DO NOT LIKE THE FOOD GO AWAY to THE CITY FOR ONE MEAL Then YOU WILL APPRECIATE IT MORE. Main buffet has lots of variety; there are a few flies but not an infestation or anything. The pool snack bar has good items as well. (Pizza, ham and cheese sandwich). The Laguna Restaurant is outdoors so there are more flies, my daughter found one in the pasta but the food there was alright. We went to the Japanese and French a la cartes. The Japanese is very good; the food and the service. The French food and service was bad. We were told that the food in Cuba is tasteless and bland ,this is true, pack ketchup. Whatever you eat make sure it is cooked (meat, breads, eggs, everything!)

Service: The service is good, some people go above and beyond and others just do their job. The only issue we had was multiple times I went to the bar with my kids and ordered 2 drinks and they gave us one drink and forgot about the others. Once I ordered my son a coke and they gave him rum & coke! One early morning our safe broke and the repairman came very quickly. Special thanks to these employees Sandra, Judith, Yaima, Barbara, Daylena and Vladamir.


Pool- There is an adult pool and a child pool. The adult pool is clean and has a swim up bar.

Overall we found the hotel meet our standards and we would return again.

Havanna Trip
I definitely won’t do this again it’s a long drive to Havana and as soon as you get there and step off the bus there are women dressed in floral dresses who put their arm around you and coerce you to take a picture with them. You walk a block where there are men who draw you, even after you tell them you don’t want a drawing, then they demand you take it and after you take it they demand money. My husband refused to pay because we didn’t ask for them and the man took our drawings back. Only he forgot my sons drawing and 3 blocks later comes back with another man demanding the drawing, when we gave it to him it was folded, he started shouting at us. It took us telling them we were going to tell other tourist not to come for them to finally leave us alone. Then there are child beggars and other beggars. As for Havana itself there’s not a lot to see or do, imagine a Europe in decay only with pre 60s American cars – the cars were cool. Our tour guide was very informative. During our free time we just hung around the bus because we didn’t want to get harassed again.

Cayo Blanco
This is a whole day trip aboard a catamaran where you stop to snorkel and then go to an island and then if you choose to go to the dolphin show. I REALLY RECOMMEND DOING THIS! It’s only a 1 hour ride and the host keeps you entertained very well. Snorkelling was fun and all equipment was provided. The island is very beautiful, the sand is white and the water is clear. On the way back we went to the dolphin marina. My son watched the dolphin show while my daughter touched and swam with the dolphins. It was a nice day, well worth the money.

Room Tip: Try and pick a room on the second or third floor, if you don't have small children. Tip often a...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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4  Thank Sunshine77782
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director Comercial at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 25 September 2013

Dear guests:

Thank you very much for your refreshing comments! It was a pleasure to read you and to share your joy!

We are very well concentrated on your needs here at Meliá. The hotel is now inside a renovation program, but,as you said, we will be better rated soon. We know that every guest is different and that is why it is important for us to know your preferences in order to satisfy them. Your satisfaction is the only purpose of our staff. If we have reached it, we did our job. It all comes down to you! We would not be who we are without you!

We very much appreciate you taking the time to give us your opinion, dear guests. We certainly look forward to welcoming you back at Meliá Península Varadero, your family paradise!

Best regard,

Sergio Jesús Martínez
Sales Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 September 2013 via mobile

Second time for my friend and I at this resort. Last year we went in peak time and before some of the renovations. We have to say we enjoyed our time more this time around despite the pool closing part way through.

We arrived and our room was ready for check in immediately. Norberto took us and our luggage to our room and we were impressed as it was recently renovated and upgraded. Later that day a welcome letter arrived for us. Our maid Yanelis was fantastic and left us champagne and key chains. We took many gifts for her and I also brought a ton of Band Aid's for the medical staff as they do not have them in Cuba.

We went right to the money exchange which is located by the children's pool now during construction in the lobby.

The beach is absolutely beautiful and the pool is being repainted for another week or so. No big deal as we had a great time at the beach and never had trouble finding chairs. Once the pool closed Vladimir,from the pool bar, was on the beach serving drinks. At the beach we paid 20 pesos to take a catamaran out to an area with fish to snorkel. Another day we took out a kayak on our own.

We did a guided day trip to Varadero for 9 pesos and got to visit a restaurant, two markets, and Mansion Xanadu. We chose this instead of the double decker buses as we didn't have an idea of where to go. We also did the excursion to the Delfinario to swim with the dolphins.

Being slow season the service was amazing whether in the buffet or the a la carte restaurants and our glasses were never empty. The shows were the same as last year with the exception of the Michael Jackson show which was phenomenal. The nightclub was also fairly empty but we managed to have a great time every night.

We had a repeat guest dinner in the Mexican a la carte on our last night with a couple who had visited the hotel four times and a gentleman who was on his tenth visit.

The staff here makes your trip! Shout out to Jorge and Randall who are part of the animation team, Yossel the DJ, Miguel and Frank the bartenders in the nightclub, Ernesto in the buffet, Dayana in Customer Service, and many others I am forgetting.

Also we met some great people from England and our new 'adopted' parents Babs and Brian who are also from the Toronto area.

Absolutely nothing to complain about with the exception of the pool closing part way through. We will return again next year!

  • Stayed: September 2013
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3  Thank dominication
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_General_Manager, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this reviewResponded 17 September 2013

Dear customer:

We highly appreciate your review, since it is wonderful to know you have had a good stay in this home. The staff and management focus to give the best service as possible which you have realized during your holidays.

Unfortunately, renovation works are needed. This is a low season, and it is required to do it, so the clients will note better facilities and services.

Thanks for your preference.

Best regards,

Frederick Andersen

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Melia Peninsula Varadero

Address: Parque Natural de Punta Hicacos | Matanzas, Varadero 42200, Cuba (Formerly Tryp Peninsula Varadero)
Region: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#10 Spa Hotel in Varadero
#15 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#21 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#22 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#27 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
Hotel Class:5 star — Melia Peninsula Varadero 5*
Number of rooms: 581
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
All inclusive resort ideal for families, with a dedicated children's area, a marvelous tranquil beach, full of activities for all ages. Honeymooners also get special treatment in a quiet special area. Tennis courts, gym, non motorized water sports, drinks, a la carte and buffet dining included. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Tryp Peninsula Varadero Hotel Varadero
Tryp Peninsula Cuba
Peninsula Varadero
Tryp Varadero
Varadero Peninsula
Tryp Peninsula Varadero Cuba
Tryp Peninsula Hotel Varadero Beach
Varadero Beach Tryp Peninsula

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