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“Not the best trip to Varadero...”

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Be Live Experience Varadero
Ranked #24 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Reviewed 4 October 2012

I am a little late on this review as I traveled to the Villa Cuba in March 2012. My good friend and I booked a last-minute trip and this was pretty much our only option. We have travelled to Varadero before and are quite aware of the differences between resorts closer to town (such as this one) and those closer to the end of the peninsula (see my review of the Iberostar Laguna Azul) so we adjusted our expectations accordingly.

We had booked separate rooms in the “hotel” section and had requested higher floor rooms. We were given instead two rooms in a bungalow adjacent to the pool. I wasn’t too pleased as we had paid a supplement to be in the hotel section. On day twowe were offered rooms on the fifth floor overlooking the pool & ocean.

As far as the bungalow goes, I would not recommend it. This one had a wall air conditioner and wooden slats instead of windows in the room (these are pre-revolution villas, keep this in mind). So the air con was so-so and we had some “visitors” in our rooms. I think some of the other villas were renovated, you might want to look into this if you are considering booking a villa.

The rooms in the hotel were pretty much what we expected from this category of resort, pretty spacious, clean and comfortable.

Buffet food was sub-par and we did not chance it with the à-la-cartes. We chose to dine at different restaurants in town instead (For around 15-20CUC per person you can get a very good meal with a variety of types of cuisine.) The resort is about a 15 minute walk from the city and restaurants.

Service overall was very good, only exception being the reception staff on arrival. My discussion over room location got pretty heated as they refused to believe me at first when I said I had paid for the “hotel” section. I always bring two copies of my hotel voucher, when I pulled my second copy out and pointed it out to them black on white, I caught them off guard and they were like a deer in headlights. Within 5 mins I had my room for the next morning.

We were told to expect this hotel to be lively but this can be hit or miss, as quite frankly it was pretty calm (we were there in the spring break period…). The good thing is it’s close to some of the clubs and downtown Varadero.

All in all, I will not return to this hotel. If you are looking for a friends trip with a lively night time atmosphere, you’re probably better off at the Barcelo Solymar. (This was our first choice but it was sold out for our dates).

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with friends
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14  Thank Chris B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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588 - 594 of 2,226 reviews

Reviewed 2 October 2012

IF ur looking for a beautiful beach beach and all u can drink, and partying every night this is the spot to go!!!! but dont expect the Ritz carleton.
Just Remember its Cuba!!!! its not americanized like Mexico. You are going to get the real cuban experience if you go to cuba.
I went down to villa cuba and had a Great Time, bc of the ppl i was with and the ppl that we met. its all how u experience life in a completely differenty country.
Dont stay in the villas its not worth it! stay in the actual hotel. get to know the entertainment staff bc they will make sure you have a wicked and party filled vacation.
Yes the food does suck, so if your picky of ur food Like realllly picky..... Go in to town for lunch and dinner, Its Cheap!!!!! and alot better than the resort.
Cuba is cuba, Its not Mexico, its not DR, so dont expect americanized economy and Hotels.
If ur into partying and drinking with ur friends and dont have alot to spend go here!!!
but if ur just cheap and think its going to be like MEXICO, go to mexico. and last but not least
YOU GET WHAT U PAY FOR!!!!!!

Room Tip: PICK A CASA ROOM or superior, gardenviews look out on to the street and can be very noisy at night
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  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with friends
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7  Thank Malcom D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 September 2012

We went to Villa Cuba after some friends had reccomended it. We left sept. 15 for 8 days. My boyfriend and I, my sister and her best friend all went together. We had booked a villa room and we got rooms that connect through the balcony! ( villa 3360). There is no AC in the big common room downstairs, and no one hung out there anyways. Our rooms were ok, but needed some new blankets. Our sheets didnt fit out king size bed LOL. Luckily we had no bed bugs, and it wasent gross. Im pretty picky and lets just say it was ok. The rooms in the hotel are renovated ... whatever, we were not there for the room. Afterall we paid 600$ all in.

The entertainment was pretty poor, maybe because the resort was DEAD!! not a very popular time of the year to travel in septemenber, but we got amazing weather during the day, and a little rain at night. It would rain mostly when the evening shows were going on, so we only saw 1 !! haha.

The food.... WOW ... this is where its bad. I have been to Cuba before, and I didnt remember it being it this bad! We could have omlets and smoothies in the morning and thats it, cause the rest was so random and yuky. Oh.. ya and bread.. it was good. Also, the buffet smelled like a farm when u walk in LOL. YUK
For dinner, the buffet was even grosser! we only ate potatoes and rice. LOL, we brought our own ketchup wich saved out lives!
Lunch, we had hamburgers and ham and cheese sandwiches at the pool snack bar. Nothing special.
We went once to the Mariposa, it was WAY better then the buffet! So book that at 1:30 at the reception area. Didnt get to try the Asian restaurant. We went downtown to eat all the other nights!
KIKI Club is AMAZING. 5$ for the best pizza and PAsta. GO!!! ( in varadero)

The bars were good. Mojitos are great and the Pina Coladas are too. Umberto and LUIS are my favorite people there!! I miss them already! ( they work the beach bar). They def. deserve a TIP or 2!!

The beach is perfect. It wasent busy so we got a hut everyday! the water was sooo warm!
The location is really close to downtown, and to International club wich is practicly next door. and it was good!
The pool was clean and HUGE. Always chairs available aswell.

Overall, I woud go there if you have a small budget and dont expect THAT much, but honestly its fun and its not THAT bad. If you go to the more expensive resorts further down the strip, it gets expensive to explore Varadero and go out to eat, cause the taxi can be like 20$ ... So it all depends what you are looking for.

We made the best of it, and we had a GREAT trip.
Just Have FUn and dont sweat the small stuff!! :)

Room Tip: villas are closer to the beach but the rooms are more run down.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Sasha V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 September 2012

This was the worst vacation I've ever been to in my life !!!!!!! I won't get into how awful the food was, and how the staff was so rude and arrogant, and how 1950ish the rooms looked like...but the worst thing was that my partner and I got Hep A......YES, you read right. Shortly after we got back, we weren't feeling well, had blood tests done and low and behold.... Hepititis A !!!!!

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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14  Thank peppermintpatti3000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 September 2012

I just got back yesterday from a 1 week stay at this resort with 10 other friends and family. Here is what was good and what was not so good.

THE GOOD
-Cheap vacation, all inclusive holiday for around $500 each
-Made good friends at the hotel with other Canadians

THE BAD (and there's a lot...)
-Typical terrible Cuban hotel food.
-Staff doesn't speak much English.
-Beach was littered with these spiky thorns from some nearby flower. You literally could not walk 5 feet without stepping on one and having to fall to the floor to remove them from your feet, even when wearing flip flops.
-These same thorns were found on "clean" towels the hotel had given us. Imagine rubbing those into your body or eyes had you not spotted them.
-Picked up a cup to make some coffee, cup had lipstick on it in shape of lips. Obviously hadn't been washed. Plates were also filthy.
-People are CONSTANTLY hustling you to buy something. On the beach, you will constantly be asked if you want to buy cigars, rum, a trip to Havana, lobsters and if you're young enough like me, you will be asked if you want marijuana or cocaine. That's right, I was asked if I wanted weed or coke. And the guy kept pushing at me to buy some, constantly knocking down the price.
-Some of the cigars sold on the beaches are very poor quality fakes. I bought a box of 25 Romeo y Julieta's and about half were garbage.
-The staff are LAZY. They are constantly standing around talking sipping rum and coke. I called for clean towels (after the spiky thorns in the towels incident) a few times and they NEVER came to bring them. I had to wait till the next morning.
-Staff members actually had the audacity to call our room on the last day asking for freebies. Mind you pretty much all Cubans you meet will ask you for clothes and shampoo (which they in turn sell) but only here did someone actually call our room asking for stuff.
-The front desk staff tried ripping off my sister TWICE when she made an international call. They first asked for 35 pesos, which she refused, and when my dad confronted them they said it was actually 25 pesos and they were sorry. Then it happened again 3 days later, the exact same incident. Always ask for receipts with these guys.

All in all, I had fun with my friends and family despite Cuba and Hotel Villa Cuba's best efforts to ruin my vacation. The food outside the hotel is not that much better than the actual hotel's food. I would not recommend this hotel to my worst enemy and wish you good luck if you're dumb enough to stay here. Not only will I not be coming back to this hotel, I will never be returning to Cuba. I have had enough of Cuba and Cuban hotels with this hotel being the final straw. It's much more worth it to pay an extra $200-$300 and stay somewhere nice in the Dominican Republic or Florida.

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank J D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2012

Left for cuba from toronto on aug 10th 2012 and came back aug 17th 2012. Paid 612$ each person for 2 people in a room. 2nd floor in a separate hotel part of the resort. I got to say I read a lot of these reviews and was going with a open mind no expectations. I was not disappointed. It is not the best hotel out there, but it was bearable. I got to say i made the most of the short time i was there, me and 5 buddies went. Starting with the weather, according to the various weather websites it was supposed to rain for the full 7 days, however it was sunny and rained only once during mid-day and stopped. It was hot again (y). The staff were quite friendly and the maid on our section of the hotel was quite nice, left her 1 cuc tips every day and some gifts (gum and necklace). The hotel wasn't too noisy, but during the 9pm show the speakers were loud. I was up till at least 4:30am with a small group of people relaxing by the pool almost every night which was fun. The food was pretty gross, but we managed.. "suck it up princess". we booked the la carte restaurants and mari posa is the best. Most of the areas are kept clean. Our hotel room itself was not part of the main hotel, it was a small 3 story apartment type of thing on the resort.. oh yeah the key cards kept f**king up which was my only complaint, there was a lot of creatures, lizards, bugs, ants...so if you afraid of bugs and animals watch out lol, however i did not see any bugs in the beautiful beach sands. I have to say I went during an "off" season and still managed to have a very fun time. Went clubbing almost every night (la rumba, club international and the cave) 10 cuc cover is hefty, but music was alright Hopefully others reading this will find something useful.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with friends
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12  Thank Ved23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2012

We went to Villa Cuba in August 2012. In general the staff were ok however the ladies in the hotel shops and front desk were not pleasant at all, they looked upset all the time. My major complain is the food. I have been in many all inclusive around the world, I can say that this is really bad. They only have 2 a la carte restaurants, to make a reservation you have to arrive at 1:30 pm, people wait at least 30 minutes before to have the opportunity to make a reservation. We had the opportunity to go to the oriental restaurant once, the food was ok but a lot better than the buffet.I do not have any complaint about the room, it was clean and bugs free.The beach is very beautiful, but again you have to be early to have shade. The pool was very dirty, and be careful when you leave the towels, they stole mine I had to pay 20 cuc. Is my first time in Cuba I don't know if the food is that bad everywhere. They don't have daycare for babies or kids, we chose this hotel because we saw this feature, is not true. I would not recommend this hotel at all.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank anamash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Be Live Experience Varadero

Address: Reparto La Torre Ave Las Americas, Varadero 42200, Cuba
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#17 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#18 Luxury Hotel in Varadero
#21 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
Price Range: £75 - £195 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Be Live Experience Varadero 4*
Number of rooms: 365
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Be Live Experience Varadero is an All Inclusive Hotel in Varadero which offers exclusive services to travellers looking for an unbeatable location, in front of a stunning beach of crystal clear waters and white fine sand. Enviable weather, personalised attention, direct access to the beach, variety of accommodation options, All Inclusive service... Come and discover the Be Live Experience Varadero, an All Inclusive hotel in Cuba. Located 30 km away from the airport, the Be Live Experience Varadero Hotel allows you to enjoy the best entertainment and rest. It has a privileged central location between the traditional and the modern Varadero, near the Golf Club and at the seafront of the best beach area. Come and discover it! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Varadero Cuba
Cuba Hotel Varadero
Villa Cuba Varadero
Villa Cuba Resort
Hotel Villa Cuba Varadero
Cuba Deals
Hotel Cuba

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