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“Mediocre”

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Melia Peninsula Varadero
Ranked #33 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Helsinki, Finland
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Mediocre”
Reviewed 10 February 2014

The hotel was a bit worn down but clean. The food at the hotel was really bad which was the biggest dissapointment for me. Most of it was convenience food with a greyish color to it. Also the drinks at most of the bars were pretty bland. I would not spend my time by the pool at all since the beach is really gorgeous. As a all-inclusive hotel the bad quality of the food is dragging the points down.

Room Tip: The resort is big. Family rooms are the furthest away from the beach. The rooms by the adult zone ma...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Suvisan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 16 February 2014
Dear Susanna V;

Thank you very much for you comments, I am sad as we didn’t meet your expectations, regarding the food I can´t understand why you rate it as bad, we have many choices plus four restaurants, snack bar and ranchón; also the bars? We have a very extend selection of spirits. Will be a great help for us if you can send an email with what you think was missing in our restaurants and bars.

I hope you will think about to coming back and give us the change to change your perception about our beautiful resort.

Best regards

David
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English first
Winnipeg, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 February 2014 via mobile

The Melia Peninsula Hotel, Matanzas province .

This was my first time going down south for the winter time and first in an all inclusive resort. I could not be any happier with the resort, staff, and food in the hotel resort.

My boyfriend and I vacationed for 7 days in Cuba, the week of jan 20-27. We went out of the resort 3 days out of 7. I love how the staff greats you with a cheerful hola everywhere you go! I'm going to break up my reviews in groups so here goes.

FOOD:
In our experience the food In the buffet was great! I especially enjoyed breakfast a great way to start the day! The chefs make your eggs to your liking and you can also get a freshly squeezed orange juice right in front of you. They have a big juicer where they put whole oranges and voila ! Magic ! Delicious orange juice to start off the day!
We thought the Ala carte was okay, you can get a lobster meal in French or Italian Ala carte if you book it ahead of time . I wish they would have told us that information. Japanese restaurant in my experience food was made too salty and too much soy sauce. Snack bar was great! Their ketchup was delicious !

BEACH!
The beach was amazing ! Ocean was breath taking ! I have no other words for it ! The playa beach bar was great ! We would like to thank Andy and Eugenio and the third bartender that's always there forgot he's name sorry! He makes the best piña colada! The 3 of them are great employees to the hotel! .

Rooms:
Our rooms were spacious and kept clean everyday. Towels were changed every other day. Our beach towels as well. You can go and get the beach towels changed yourself at the customer service place . We tipped our maid every other day and she was happy with what we gave her. We didn't bother present or gifts like everyone suggested. It's really not necessary .

Excursions :
We ventured out to downtown Varadero on our own first took the double decker bus which is 5cuc each . Which got so crowded with tourist that the bus is packed like sardines . You are better off taking the local bus which is 2 cuc each. And lots more room to seat.

We did habana but we found a private taxi that took us there which was great for couples and worked out great for us. Our guide even stopped at a couple historic sites and wherever we wanted ! Which was great! If you're travelling couple ask the locals in the resort the best way to do excursions! We liked that we didn't have to go on the bus went on our own time and didn't have to wait for anybody !

We did a catamaran tour without the dolphins with gaviota tours! This was my favourite part of the trip ! Open bar, snorkelling ! Then off to cayo blanco ! BEAUTIFUL BEACH!! Lobster lunch and over an hour of beach time ! Then back on the boat to sail back to Varadero and then the crew of the boat got everybody going and it turned into a little dance party boat ! So fun! If you want to skip out on the dolphins it's the way to go ! We noticed that the group that went with dolphins did not get beach time at all! They had their lunch and had to leave right away. Gaviota tours check it out !

Overall would I come back to this resort? YES!! And check out other Melia resort in other parts of Cuba as well!

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank Bmlugtu
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 review, 16 February 2014
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! And of course, I agree that natural orange juice is marvelous, every morning. It is something people usually miss, such as the coconuts.

Very much appreciate you taking the time to give us your opinion, dear guests. Even greater news is that you loved your stay in Melía Península and this beautiful country, Cuba!

Regards,

Sergio Jesús Martínez
Sales Manager
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Sudbury, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2014

Jan31/14 - Feb7/14
The resort is so run down.you can only paint rusty fixtures so many times. Replace them already.
The pool area was missing parts of the spill guard around the pool. The bridge over the pool had many loose planks.

The snack bar smelt like a massive propane leak,and is in desperate need of renos.

Many of the buildings have missing paint in spots,damaged siding.
Twin beds? Come on!! Where are the king or queen beds. This is 2014 not 1914.
Food is the same every day, and every nite... And so substandard!!
Ever try washing your dishes in your bathroom sink, why should your chef?
1 toaster for 400 people at breakfast?? hmmmmm.

The beach is the only one in 10km that has a 3 foot drop off,all others had a tractor grade their beach fronts . Not in the Melia 2014 budget?
The water features at the main buffet and the Gondola restaurants are disgraceful. Algae? Clean them already.
Outdoor lighting to walk back to your rooms is very poor.
Give your maids and gardeners the proper tooling. A wooden stick with a towel on it for a mop?
Stop reaping the profits and fix the place up already!
Oh yes, let me guess your working on it... 20 year plan?

Is this the Melia standards?
We will not return to this resort.

On a good note. Your coffee is the best I have ever had.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Riley0004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 14 February 2014
Dear

Thank you very much for all your comments, we are taking in a very positive manner your comments and suggestions, we are working every day based in our guest comments to improve the satisfaction. I am sad after your comments as looks like we are not taking care of the property and for the satisfaction of our valued guests.

We have a full maintenance team working full day to preserve the resort, can be that one day in a specific moment was a loose planks as I said they are full day working at the resort and they were changing for a new ones.

We have king beds and twin beds, to the resort is not only coming couples, are coming friends, families, groups, etc… and many people is asking for a twin beds, but they are not single size they are bigger, but is not a problem to my team to change you to a room with a king bed size if you request it.

We have a rotate menu in our buffet, four themes restaurants, ranchón and 24hrs. Snack where you different type of food and choices to make sure that every day you can enjoy something different.

The tractor is not belongs to any hotel and is working for the entire beach is nothing to do with Meliá budget and they are passing in our beach as well.

As I explain in the other comment the lagoons are empty as we are changing all the pumps and doing some maintenance.

From your comments I guess that you liked the service and the food at the restaurants and in the ranchón as you didn’t comment anything about them and also with the bars as you loved our coffee, one of the bests in Varadero.

I hope you will change your mind and came to visits us next time you will plan to come to Varadero and check the status after fix all those small thing that you already comment and we are already working on.

Best regards

David
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Travellers are raving about these Varadero hotels

Regina, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2014

We stayed here Jan 20-27. The beach is gorgeous; the grounds quite lovely, the room was very clean. Those are the most important things to us, so I would recommend the Melia Peninsula. This was my first time to Cuba, but I have traveled to many Caribbean destinations. There is so much potential here!

We stayed in building 27, which was a great location beside the beach. (I will upload a photo of the resort map.) The buildings are quite lovely and seem fairly new - I think I heard it’s about 10 years old. Lots of palm trees and lovely vegetation. Pools looked nice, but we prefer the beach.

There are 'lagoon' areas surrounding the restaurants, and for some reason they are either empty or have shallow scummy water. It really detracts from the beauty of the resort. Hope they are a work in progress. Fill them with water and add a few fountains to keep it moving.

The a la cartes were ok. The Japanese Tepanyaki was definitely the best. The buffet food tended to be lukewarm. If you stood in line for fresh cooked pasta or meat, it was better - but we didn't like standing in line so much. That said, we always found enough to eat. The pool snack bar served pretty good burgers, hot dog, pizza and grilled ham&cheese. There is also a restaurant by the beach that is open for lunch - buffet style.

There are often musicians in the restaurants - so lovely. The Cuban music and arts are wonderful. We bought CDs from several musical groups. There is also a small art gallery beside the lobby bar. Try to get there when the fellow is there selling art. We got some wonderful prints. He only seemed to be there in the evening.

We enjoyed the evening entertainment we saw, especially the dance competition. Michael Jackson was pretty good too. The best moment of the whole trip was one evening when we caught a parade of musicians and dancers. They stopped in the middle of the buffet and had a party! Cuban rhythms, flashy dancers - pure joy! All the servers joined in, and some guests too. We wished it had gone on longer.

My friend and I do business process improvement for a living. We could make a lot of suggestions that would make a big difference. (If you'd like to bring us back for a free stay, we'll share them all!) The most important is to improve the money exchange. You want us to spend money, right? Tips, shopping, tours, etc. Why make it so extremely difficult to get the cash? We stood in line twice, for an hour each time. There was always a long line at the Cadeca counter. There is one person behind a window with a calculator. They are only open a few hours each day - be sure to check the hours before you get in line. Suggestion: let people take a number, then go sit down in lobby and have a drink until their number comes up. Or do something to make the wait more bearable – bring drinks around or provide some entertainment. This wasted valuable beach time. We would have given more tips if we could have got more money.

Room Tip: See the map photo. 27 was nice by the beach. Kid pool and rooms are farthest from beach.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank JulesH583
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 14 February 2014
Dear JulesH583;

Firstly I would like to thank you for your comments. We are working to change all the pumps in the lagoon and some light maintenance to keep it well and that is why we have two of them empty those days.

We have a great animation team who are taking care to create a nice ambiance in the hotel, and honestly Mr. Rólmes (Animation Manager) who took over the department short time ago he is doing a fantastic job and improving all the activities during every day and night.

Unfortunately the Money Exchange (Cadeca) is not belongs the hotel and it is exactly the same than the other hotels., however I like your ideas and I will suggest to them.

I hope see you again in our beautiful Resort and see the difference after we will finish with the lagoons.

Best regards;

David
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Ancaster, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 February 2014

Our third trip to Cuba, first two were to Cayo Coco, most recent Memories which was a very nice experience and would rate that at true 5 star experience. This one to Varadero at this Melia property was not a very good experience we stayed from Jan 22nd to Feb 5th 2014. From the first day when we interacted with the people as we have very social little ones the Cuban workers made us feel guilty and would inform us how hard there life is. They saw our luxury double stroller and where quickly reminded how great it is and how the Cuban people can never have such a stroller. The entertainment staff constantly were complimenting me on my nice clothing but in a quilty fashion then asking when we were leaving. At one point an entertainer girl came up to me on the beach tried to kiss my cheeks then started telling me how difficult life is in Cuba. I felt like I should give her the bikini off my body I had already given her my sons sunglasses, we left most of our children's clothing and diapers to people as well. The assumption was that our family was "rich" maybe because I am younger than my hubby and our cadillac stroller..heck I didn't even bring a piece of jewellery with me!
The beach was unimpressive as it had a sharp dip not child or rather baby friendly, further down it was a bit better at the other resorts.
The room was standard and looked over 10 years old, the pillows were terrible smelled like sweat and bedding only had a flat sheet so in the night you were sleeping on the gross mattress.
No cribs only gross play packs (they had nice cribs in Cayo Coco.
The resort itself was nice the food was good, but we will never return to Cuba after this negative experience I even informed Customer Service the last day as I finally had enough as I was approached by 4 people in one day. Nothing was really done and this trip left a very sour taste in my mouth because of how the Cuban people think of us Canadians. Yes we are privileged but nothing comes easy and we have to work very hard for everything, including a vacation for 2 weeks like this one.
Finally leaving Cuba heading back to Toronto and having a mechanical issue with your airplane is a HUGE problem if you have to land in the USA.. (which we did)... so think twice before going there as being stuck in a plane then airport with small children for hours is a huge pain in the but!

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LadyMomof2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 13 February 2014
Dear LadyMomof2

Thank you very much for all your comments. Is sad to know that you left from our resort with this feeling, we meet few times during your stay and you didn’t told me this issues. I already send you a private asking for more information as I take all your comments in a very positive way as this helps to us to improve our service day by day. Is not fair for all our employees that for the behaviour of one of my member you left with this impression, when your comments regarding the resort are nice and also you comment that the food was good.

Hopefully you will change your mind in the near future and give to all the Cuban to feel the real Cuban spirit.

Best regards;

David
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calgary
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 February 2014

Having just returned from this resort on Feb 3 2014, I am excited to share the highlights of this resort. I have 18 years management experience in hotels and resorts and this was my 11th time in Cuba.

Many thanks to the management and staff of the Melia Peninsula Varadero for making this trip the best I have had. This was my first time at your resort and our group just loved it.

The resort itself is beautiful, so well kept and clean. The guestrooms were wonderful - large and clean - thank you to our housekeeper - Malady.

Every staff member we met from gardeners, housekeepers, servers, front desk, customer service and managers we always so kind and smiling. A great big thank you to Yeleine and Vladamir who's customer service excellence, meant so much.

A great big thank you for the outstanding food at the buffets and a la cartes. The food at this resort was THE BEST I have had in Cuba - no question. What a treat to see lobster AND Prime Rib one night at the buffet. My daughter has Celiac (gluten allergy) and she was able to eat here with no problems.

Most resorts I have been to previously had some good qualities, but not all. To me, the Melia Peninsula Resort has it all. Thank you so much for a fabulous trip and we will be back!!

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank barbdouglas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 6 February 2014
Dear Laughlots;

Was a pleasure to take care of you and all your friends during all your stay and also was a pleasure to have a chat with all of you.

I will pass all your comments to my team especially to Malady, Yeleine, Vladamir and to our fabulous Executive Chef Jose Maria.

I hope see you again here and have a nice chat again, do not forget to inform us before visit.

Best regards

David
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Toronto
Level 4 Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 February 2014

2nd Time in Cuba and we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of this resort. Of course the food was not spectacular but I think because we went with the proper expectations so we didn't have a problem. The buffet was ok but the fruit left a lot to be desired. We went here because we had a 2 year old and this property has a baby club that starts at that age. We didn't end up using any of their services aside from the mini-disco they did every night at the outdoor theatre which our daughter loved! The had a great kids area with a nice pool including a water slide. (They also have ice-cream sandwiches at the kids pool which we took part in every day for a very nice treat). We spent most of our time at the beach but also a little time at the pool and pool bar. The room was spacious and comfortable. Our room was close to the beach but there really isn't much for ocean view because there is a band of vegetation between the villas and the beach.

The food at the a la carte restaurants were quite good. We loved the Japanese and our daughter loved the teppanyaki table. We loved the grounds and felt like we were in a lovely garden and enjoyed wandering about. The beach was great with lots of loungers.

The shows are your typical big resort fair. A lot of local talent and what can only be described as a affinity to spandex in the costumes. They did a lovely rendition of 'Be Our Guest' from Disney's Beauty & The Beast" which our daughter enjoyed however I had a chuckle over was a little the thong like outfits they had the teacups dancing in.

Couple things to note... changing money is awful! You have to either line up an hour before they open or stand in line for 40 minutes while this one women in a little booth takes her time assisting guests. Sometimes she'll run out and then you have to wait while she gets more. At other times people were in line for some time and she just closed. (no warning). Customer service is not her forte.

The internet is also terrible. I tried to use their system (you pay a fee and get it for 30 minutes) but it was so slow I didn't get anything done. I really didn't want to use my phone but I ended up doing it anyway because I had to deal with some things at home online. The mobile service is also spotty so I was loading and reloading pages. At the end I think I paid about $200 for my usage but that's anywhere near as bad as other people I know who paid almost $1000 for a 5 days usage. DON'T USE YOUR PHONE! Turn it off or put it on Airplane mode. This is clearly a cash grab from 'rich' tourists.

Lastly, ensure any credit cards you are using are NOT US based. I tried to use my CIBC credit card but the account was taken over from Citibank so as far as Cubans are concerned it's a U.S. Financial institution and none of their systems will accept it. No Amex, No Diners, If you have Visa or Mastercard make sure it is a true Canadian based account! Wasn't a huge deal because we had other cards but I can imagine it being a big deal if you only have the one to use and were expecting to put things on credit to avoid bring lots of cash.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank AnUrbanDad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 5 February 2014
Dear friends from Toronto;

Thank you very much to all your comments. As you said we have a huge kids area, actually a big part of our Resort is made for families with kids with special pool, kids area, new games room with PlayStations and Wiis and totally separate area for couples, honeymooners and friends.

We have a very strong animation team who well organized everyday all type of animation and music for all type of ages to make sure that we cover all wishes. Of our guests, even they are happy to listen suggestions of new activities and they are doing without any problem as all of us we are trying keep everybody happy in our beautiful resort.

The facility of the money exchange is an outsource facility and the Internet service as well. We are expecting to have Wi-Fi facility before the end of this year. Also I would like to make a comment regarding the use of the Credit Card, is not means the Cubans doesn´t want to use it, the problem is because the embargo they are not working in Cuba, I really recommend to check always with your banks if your credit cards are working in Cuba as not all the banks can operate in Cuba.

I am sure that I will see you soon here in our resort and please let me know before your next arrival.

King regards.

David
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Additional Information about Melia Peninsula Varadero

Property: Melia Peninsula Varadero
Address: Parque Natural de Punta Hicacos | Matanzas, Varadero 42200, Cuba (Formerly Tryp Peninsula Varadero)
Phone Number:
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:
#5 Spa Hotel in Varadero
#15 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
#24 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#25 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#27 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
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 
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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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