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“Great beach and grounds. Decent food. The rest was ok.”

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Melia Peninsula Varadero
Ranked #33 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Cambridge, Ontario, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Great beach and grounds. Decent food. The rest was ok.”
Reviewed 5 July 2014 via mobile

Let me start by saying that this is our 13th time in Cuba and 2nd time in Varadero. I will try and be as objective as possible. We travelled with two 15-year old boys.

Our experience began with an email I sent to the hotel from their melia hotels website to which I never got a response. Check in was slow. No overview of where things were or how to get to our room. Normally you are greeted with a tropical drink which eventually arrived but not enough for everyone. They kept our passports overnight which I was not happy about ... It is a safety/security issue which they should find a way around. They tried to give our teens adult bracelets which annoyed me. No big deal anyway as the whole stay, they were being given alcoholic drinks anyway, even after asking for no alcohol.

The rooms were very plain and run down but everything worked well. Our "adjoining" rooms were on different floors. Our adult room had two "double" beds that even when we pushed together, the maid kept putting them apart. We slept in separate beds the whole week. We have stayed at other places that also had the two beds but they would bring them together and make them as one bed... Not at this place, even though we did ask for a king bed when we booked. Building 25 is excellent. Right by the adult pool and as close to the beach as you can get. A little further to walk to the buffet though but we liked the exercise.

The grounds were beautiful and well maintained. Also, the trees were quite mature. One of the nicer grounds we have experienced except for the stagnant or dried up water features. The green algae was disgusting, they tried to put chlorine pucks in but it just created small clean spots. The bridged made of wood were in need of repair and they closed the major one leading to the buffet stating it was under renovation but nobody ever worked on it while we were there.

They apparently have 4 a la cartes but you can only use two. We chose well > Japanese was a great interactive experience and Jose was wonderful. Italian was ok .... It was the same food you could get from the buffet except for the tiramisu which was good and the appetizers. They really don't book a lot of times and dates so it is hard to get your two bookings... Do it as soon as you arrive. I feel that their eating hours are way off. Lunch opens at 12:30 at the grill and at 1 at the buffet. Yes, you have the 24 hour snack bar but it is ham/cheese sandwiches, burgers (which are way undercooked) hot dogs and pizza, all of which was ok. Yoyo was the best server ever. Friendly, attentive and just awesome. The food was some of the best we have had in Cuba although, yes they keep it out in the heat at the grill but it is on cooling plates. At the main buffet, there are grilling sections for meat and for fish as well as either a pasta or stir fry section. Food on the warming plates were repetitive but fairly good. Breakfast is always a favourite of ours. Hard to tell what some stuff was. The yogurt had a milk consistency. The juice bar waters down most of the drinks... The banana one was by far the best. Great ice cream but rarely cold enough.

Most of the serving staff at bars seem very unfriendly. It was perhaps the least friendly place we have been to. Not a lot of gratitude for tips which just meant we stopped tipping.

Everyone assumes we speak Spanish but we don't. On the other hand, I understand enough to know when I was being bad mouthed for not tipping (one of the men that would get your beach chair for you). Classy. Carlitos would get my beach chair (he is one of the two) but he was always nice and pleasant so I always tipped him. Always lots of shade at the beach and even though we would get there at 9 am, there was always seating. The water is by far the best feature here. So clean and warm that we rarely bothered with the pool which was much louder but also always clean. Shade is harder to come by at the pool.

After 6 pm, there is little to do. They close down the activities so you can't play pool or anything which is tough with teen boys. We did at really take in the entertainment...after 13 trips, it is essentially the same. We did enjoy the music at night at the reception area.

A couple of other miscellaneous things: the hours of opening bars or buffets were rarely on time. The one bar that opens at 4 coiled not serve anyone til 4:40 when he was finally set it. Buffets rarely opened on time. The internet was affordable at 4.50 cuc per hour and worked well although their keyboard is slightly different so I had to keep asking where certain symbols were. Our fridge was always restocked and we never had towel art. We did a late check out which was again affordable at 7 cuc per hour but of course, as always, they could not read my card so cash it was.

You could almost always get a paddle boat or such and they were quite lax about asking for room number. Same with beach towels.

Well, I think that covers most important topics. If you want to know more, feel free to email me.

Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
4 Thank GuidaW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MPV_DirComercial, Director General at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 8 July 2014
Dear Guida W.:

We appreciate you have taken your time to share this review with the travelers. You have truly evaluated every point. And I realize you have enjoyed your stay in general, some topics as food, rooms, beverage, beach, entertainment and the staff, have reached in part your expectation. Now, I feel you had contras that made you rate lower.

I apologize for no answering your mail, maybe there was a communication failure.
The hotel has many arrivals from Canada, but check in procedure normally does not take longer than 30 minutes. Also the bartenders come to assist with welcome cocktail any time of the day. We appreciate your comment about this topic. It makes us check it up with the food and beverage team. The staff is instructed in giving just non-alcoholics to teens and we will take measures if you let us know who or where did they were given alcoholic beverages.

As we have more twin than king size beds, people can request to the maid or front desk if they want to put their beds together. Anyone can report it at their arrival. However, we are buying new king size beds to satisfy this request.

Certainly some minor works have been done as painting the buffet bridge, recently reopened, and cleaning main water mirror. Unfortunately, these improvements are not finished but coming travelers will enjoy the beautiful sights within the garden, terraces and palapas. They should be ended this week.

Your opinion about our staff is important as this is one of the biggest assets of Meliá Península Varadero. Completely agreed with mentioning YOYO! He is a truly special employee.
You can count on us when deciding to come over… maybe next holidays, and please, let us know when you book, as we can take note of your request. Feel free to write directly to director.general.mpv@meliacuba.com or to our Sales manager, jefe.ventas.mpv@meliacuba.com

Best regards,

Fabrizio Testoni
General Manager
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Istanbul, Turkey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2014

İt was our first time in Cuba and travelling as a family we could not have picked a betterhotel. Our room was on the 2nd floor, we found it very quiet and a clean comfortable room. Front desk staff was professional and helpful, check in was fast and bellboy service quick. The a la carte restaurants were excellent our favourites were the Oriental and French, although we did try all of them. There was a good variety of choices for buffet breakfast and lunch - more than enough for a picky eater like me anyway. Although repetitive as all buffets are, the taste of the food was good. I was in a different country and I was not looking for gourmet meals.The beach is beautiful and well maintained and cleans, in spite of some guests not usingthe garbage cans to dispose of their litter and you will have no problem finding a palapa and beach chair. The beach bar is small but was adequately manned and we did not wait long for our drinks. At the end we had a good time.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
4 Thank Burhan F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 3 July 2014
Dear Burhan F;

Thank you very much for all your comments; we are glad that you enjoyed your holidays in our Resort. As you explain we have an small bar in our beach open every day to ensure that our guests don’t need to walk long for a drinks.

We hope see you again soon and do not forget to inform us before your next visit to prepare everything for you.

Best regards;
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 June 2014

I felt compelled to write a review for Melia Peninsula Varadero mainly because of the cockroaches. I read the reviews and overall this hotel seemed okay. However, on our first night, I saw about six 'little' cockroaches. I called the hotel staff and they told me this is normal for Cuba and had the maid spray the next day. After this, I only saw giant cockroaches. One of them flied. My friend and I talked to people at other resorts and in the same resort and none of them seemed to have them same problem. Maybe we were just unlucky!

The hotel and grounds and beach are beautiful. It was much better than I had anticipated. The staff were very friendly. The buffets weren't the best, but the Japanese restaurant was both entertaining and delicious. The disco should probably have a no kids allowed policy. I felt awkward drinking around children and I wished the parties were a little more lively. I recommend walking around or partying in downtown Veradero and taking the old Havana tour.

All in all it was a good trip. Thank you for a great time Melia Peninsula Varadero!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Kris647
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 26 June 2014
Dear Kris647;

Thank you very much for all your comments, as always we are taking all the reviews in a very positive way to ensure we learn from all our guests.

I would like to apologize for the inconvenience with the cockroaches, of course is not normal in the resort, we are having a pest control company who is working every day to control all pest to ensure guest satisfaction.

I am glad that you rate your trip as good and you had a great time in Meliã Península Varadero.

I hope see you soon and do not forget to inform us before your next visit.

Best regards;

David Salgado
Resident Manager
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 June 2014

I stayed here June 15-22nd. Would not stay here again. I'll mention the positive things first - I stayed on the 3rd floor (no bugs in my room), and I was right next to the beach and pool. The beach is gorgeous. That's about it for all that's good about it. When we first got there, things were unorganized with checking in. That didn't change all week. The staff's answer to most things were "I don't know" or their answers were inappropriate to what I was asking because of the language barrier, I guess? The wifi was down when I arrived. They told me every single day that "tomorrow" it will be fixed. It was finally fixed on my last day (I think... I didn't bother checking). I barely saw a smile on a staff members face. The staff on the beach were rude. The staff in the dining room were not too eager to help. It always feel like you're bothering them when you ask for anything. There was a few staff members we sought out because they were excellent. Juanito in the main dining room in the evening was excellent. The Japanese a la carte was fun, but you can't really call it Japanese food just because they throw teriyaki sauce on it... Jose was very entertaining, and I recommend it because you won't really get much of a hot meal with any type of flavor in the buffet. The pool snack bar was okay, except I found hair in my food. It's not their fault but there are birds flying all over you when you try to eat there, so the hair was the last straw for me, and I never went back.The entertainment wasn't bad. The shows are ok, but the best entertainment was a few nights of great music in the main lobby. Sometimes they just had a guy sing up there like it was a karaoke night with music from a laptop. I would have hung around the pool more often, but the one time I did, they pulled up 3 poor unsuspecting girls and made them take part in a competition where they had to dance like strippers and have guys holler to vote which one won and was the sexiest. It was almost disturbing. The rooms are okay, my room was constantly freezing no matter what the temperature was. The fan was so loud I had to sleep with ear plugs in the entire time (I could STILL hear it). The sheets were starchy and there were stains on it.

Needless to say, I wouldn't go back. I had a better time at Barceló Solymar where the staff are always smiling and the rooms are way better in the main building... and that's considered 3 star. For what I paid for this trip, I can't say much... A smile or two would have made my experience a little nicer.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Dalita84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 26 June 2014
Dear Dalita84;
Thank you very much for all your comments; as always we are taking all comments in a very positive way as this is our best tool to improve day-by-day.
We appreciate all your positive comments as the room location, our gorgeous beach, our chef Jose at the Japanese Restaurant, Juanito at the main restaurant and night entertainment at the lobby…
I would like to apologize as we didn’t meet your expectations, I am really sorry for all inconvenience that you had, you can be sure that we will work to ensure this won’t happens again and with the Wi-Fi connection; unfortunately the solution of this problem was not in our hands.

I would like you to consider us again in your future holidays to feel that we are taking care of all your comments and show you all the changes. Do not forget to inform us before your next visit and I will take care of all your family to ensure you will have a memorable holiday.

Best Regards;

David Salgado
Resident Manager
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Montreal, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2014

Stayed on this resort last week.Beach is nice,Buffet food quality is lousy for a 5 Star rated hotel,can easily be downgraded to a 3 Star for other customer convenience.Room looks clean at 1st.site,cockroaches,big ants available at night.BBQ Meal & Cuban restaurant are horrible.Bed covers and sheets sure does not meet my expectations for a 5 star rating.Old,worn out,cheap quality stuff.Patio doors remain open,locks broken.TV is 17 ins.Coconut trees outside not maintained,fruits are contaminated with diseases. The hotel remove the night gown the previous night to make sure that people do not steal them,they are already old,worn out. Hotel has to pay someone to take them home.Cheap paper sandals supplied. Do not expect a 5 star hotel as u will be disappointed.

Room Tip: Closest the beach is nicer
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank Robert550
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 25 June 2014
Dear Robert550;

Thank you very much for your comments, as always we are taking all the comments in a positive way to ensure that we are improving day-by-day.

I would like to apologize as we didn´t meet your expectations, I would like you to think about to coming again and please inform us before your visit to ensure that you will change your perception about us.
Best regards;

David Salgado
Resident Manager
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Ontario, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2014

My family just returned from a week long stay at this resort and we had a great time. The resort was ok-definitely not a 5 star resort, but no major issues while we were there. The food was ok, there was always something to eat..even my fussy kids enjoyed the food, especially the pasta made to their specifications. There were a few concerns with food safety-eggs were not always cooked….cross contamination…etc, but so far we are not sick! We did however take our Dukoral before going. The 24 hour snack bar was perfect for quick snack of fries or pizza for the kids.
We stayed in room 2542 and immediately noticed a musty smell when we entered our room, but eventually that went away. The rooms were clean, ours was a bit rough in certain areas-bathroom especially-could use some updating. The beds were ok, we had 2 double beds and a cot in our room..the cot was like sleeping on a piece of plywood-it was completely rock hard! The A/C worked well and the rooms cooled off very quickly. There were tiny ants in our room, we were located on the ground level… and I wish that we requested 2nd level or higher. The staff were very friendly and helpful and were always pleasant. The grounds were clean and beautiful, the beach was stunning. Overall, it was a great holiday for an fantastic price! We paid $2100 for a family of 4! We booked last minute and would definitely return for the price we paid. June was a quiet time, and the weather was superb.

Room Tip: our room was 2542 and this was an excellent location if you want to be located close to the pool/bea...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Katie T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 24 June 2014
Dear Katie T;

Thank you very much for all your comments; we are glad that you rated your holidays as “Great Time” and your kids enjoyed the pasta station and the snack bar at the main pool.

We are doing rooms updating, we started last year and this year we are updating more, I would like if you can inform us before your next visit to ensure that you will get a renovated room in a high floor to ensure that your holidays will be perfect.

Best Regards

David Salgado
Resident Manager
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Ontario
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 June 2014 via mobile

We stayed at Melia Peninsula Varadero in May and it was not very busy at all. The food staff diffenately require assistance from management, regarding safe handling and keeping the buffet running. I felt as though if I needed something it was a bother (example bread) cause there was none...I asked 2 staff then management after they dissappear ed for 10 mins then they fully stocked it.the beach lunch area was terrible, especially the cooks there, they just don't like their job, or don't like English Speaking people. The waiter/ waitress staff were excellent...2 especially...we always sat in the same area and we were very impressed with the service. The room we stayed in 1724 which was second level, we had to have the air conditioning fixed, the room was very musty smelling, and 1725 was third level, a very clean room, had to get the safe battery replaced but they did that all in a timely manner. The housekeeping staff was fantistic !! The bartenders
were not overly friendly.All in all a good vacation for some rest and relaxation in Varadero Cuba.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank LittleMrsSunshine10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Director_Residente, Director Residente at Melia Peninsula Varadero, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Dear LittleMrsSunshine10;
Thank you very much for all your comments, as always we are taking all your comments in a very positive way and as a tool to improve our guest satisfaction.
We are glad that you liked the room number 1725 in the third level and the housekeeping service.

The most important is that you rated your holiday as good and you got nice rest and relaxation time.

Again thank you for your feedback and you can be sure that we will use it to improve.

Best regards;

David Salgado
Resident Manager
Report response as inappropriate
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

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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