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“FUSSY WORLD TRAVELLER ENJOYED EVERY MINUTE OF THIS HOTEL”
Review of Melia Las Antillas

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Melia Las Antillas
Ranked #11 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 4 January 2010

The Melia Las Antiilas is older but a great hotel with wonderful grounds. I am a fussy traveller who have frequented mostly 5 star hotels and most renowned hotels in the world. My finances have changed tremendously and I have to re adjust my travels to better suit my budget. Before cbosing this resort, I did spend 2 weeks reading reviews upon reviews on all Cuban Hotels in Varadero and was unsure to whether I had picked a good one

Hotel

Hotel in general was pretty nice with nice grounds, kept clean, the staff was unbelievably attentive to your needs, great service and always smiling etc. This is a quiet hotel with no children allowed ,which made it even more special for me as I needed a real break. I used the massage spa on three occasions and the massagist was excellent. During my one week stay we managed to walk the beach and visited at least a dozen other hotels to compare and I must admit that the Melia was up there with the stars compared to other hotels. We checked pool areas and receptions in most of them.

Food

I have travelled the world and my favorite dishes are mainly seafood, The food was excellent at this hotel considering we were in Cuba and there was no shortage of fresh seafood to pick from where the cook would grill your pick. I am not a buffet type of person and therefore reserved in the A la Carte Restaurant most nights. Classy always good food and no left overs from the buffet was served in the a la carte restaurants, We also did not have a hard time reserving.

The buffet was great also, you picked your own fruits and someone would be there to make you a smoothy in a blender, many cooks at your disposal at all meals to cook your meats, fish, poultry etc. What more would you want, Had some mushy dishes also but everything in general was very good.

Beach

Wow what a beach! Silky white sand, so fine and the water, you could walk hundreds of feet without being totally submerged under the water. Lots of chairs and straw umbrellas at your disposal, no beggers and great attendants.

Tours

Hard to find someone to help you. We chose not to use the tours as we found they were there to pretty much gouge you,

TIps

We rented a moped for 24 pesos a day and went to this beautiful snorkeling area call Playa Coral, easy driving no traffic. When we got there we got a personal snorkeling guide who took us snorkeling and a totally different part of the Playa. Cost for the whole thing including good quality snorkels fins and mask 10 pesos!!! Another way would be to get a private taxi, go in a group of 4 it cost half the cost of a tour.

We also took a trip to Havana. Tour price was 70 or 100.00 per person. We grabbed a cab to varadero to Calle 36 bus terminal and the bus to Havana was 10 pesos!!! Unfortunately the busses were full due to the Christmas season, but within a few minutes we found a taxi and shared with another couple that was there. Total cost return to our hotel 60 pesos per couple. Cost about a third.

My suggestion is if you can team up with another couple grab a cab downtown or by the hotel and do your private tours, more comfortable and alot more things to see with alot less people around.

In general I loved my trip there and will go back for sure


Nikky

Ontario

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank diamondeyhes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 4 January 2010

First visit to cuba probably the last. The complex and staff were great really well tended gardens and most of the staff very friendly. We had bad weather 1st week and nothing to do except go to bar where we had problems finding a seat. We ate in buffet restaurant and found food cold and inedible We had booked what was classed as a junior suite.but it wasnt although room was cleaned by betsy who left flowers and towel arrangements on bed and was very nice .

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank triciaLeeds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 January 2010

meila Las Antillas is about 3/4 of the way down the main autopiste, so it is definately only for those who want a quiet hotel holiday. The main varadero town area is about 10 minutes taxi ride away. It is a "no children" hotel so this makes it a fairly quiet hotel during the day, but the nightly entertainment is fantastic as it doesn't have to cater towards children. On two of the nights we were there they brought in external entertainment - a ballet and a latin dance group - the standards were very high and would be entertainment that you would consider paying for - this is essential as it is quite a distance to go anywhere there at night. Food was great, the buffet was actually preferable to the restaurants with a bbq grill available. Rooms were a high standard and very comfortable. Pool area was great and very busy during the day. Would definately recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank KXCAUS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 December 2009

Having never been to Cuba before, nevermind Varadero I was a little overwhelmed by all the choices available on the Varadero strip. Melia Las Antillas was ranked about #9 on Trip Advisor based on many great reviews and I have to say it was outstanding.

Flight - Sunwing
I had heard a few bad things about Sunwing from a few years back but they were terrific. The flight was on time and the attendants great. Our Rep, Dausel was very helpful and helped us pick from the many excursions available.

Check-in
We arrived at about 11:30 a.m. at the resxort, well before the check-in time, but the front desk found us a ground floor room that was ready. In less than a half hour we were changed and at the restaurant for lunch.

Housekeeping
Marlene, who was assigned to our complex was terrific...the room was spotless everyday when we returned from excursions/the beach.

The room
We really liked the room, the setup is quite nice with more than enough room including a sitting area.

The grounds
Probably one of the best parts of melia Las Antillas, the grounds are very well-treed (great for people shy of the sun) and the design is beautiful. Probably the most beautiful grounds of any resort we have stayed at. The moats, bridges, sitting areas were great. The flora was amazing and usually identified with small signs...attention to detail is incredible.

The beach
Fantastic. A harming walkway through some mangroves brings you to a beautiful beach. Go early enough and you can reserve some chairs with your towels and a cheap paperback. Vendors set up mobile stands but never bother you unless you are interested.

The food
Both ala carte and buffet restaurants were fantastic. I had heard Cuban resort food was on the bland side...not so at the Melia Las Antillas. In the buffet restaurant, The Pasta, BBQ and Fish stations were great and offered great variety. The wait staff were very attentive and friendly and humoured me as I tried my broken Spanish.

In the ala Carte restaurants the experience was also terrific. We only ate at the Italian and Seafood restaurants and the Seafood restaurant was our favourite - partly because of the food, partly the staff. If you sit near the end closest to the beach Candido will serve you and he bends over backwards to make you feel at home. Very nice guy.

Animators
Top notch and very engaging. We played volleyball a couple of times and watch many other activities...their enthusiasm was infectious. "Fidel" and "Raul" especially were a hoot.

Entertainment
I wish we had the stamina to stay up to 10, but after a busy work week before our trip and excursions most days, we crashed every day. At other resorts we have visited the shows started at 9 or earlier...but the variety of the shows appeared to be great.

Excursions
We went on four excursions listed below, ranked.

Colonial Havana - easily our most favourite. Our Guide Alex was friendly and knowledgeable. We fell in love with Havana...the people and the architecture...and Alex showed us so much of both. Highly recommended. Save your money for the market at the end of the trip...huge.

Jeep Safari - a bit of everything, snorkeling at Playa Coral, swimming in a cenote, lunch and horseback riding at a ranchero, a riverboat ride and a visit to a real Cuban farm were all fascinating. We shared a jeep with a father and son from the Toronto area and we all had a great time.

Boat Adventure - Unlike a mangrove boat trip we once took in the Dominican, there wasn't much to this...back and forth along the canal and a walk into a "zoo" with a few animals. The jet-ski was fun with the choppy waves and it was a cheap excursion. Fun, but not a must-do.

Matanzas Trip - Our least favourite excursion. There isn't much to Matanzas and the Bellamar Caves are challenging to taller people like me...I actually gauged my head on the cave ceiling, but overall not great. Our guide however was very animated and fun, and made the excursion enjoyable.

We did trips on our own to Varadero to the markets, shopping plazas and the park, which were enjoyable. Varadero is no Playa del Carmen and is more residential than a downtown strip, but is nice. The Park is great too, with three or four restaurants with very well-priced entrees. We ate at the Italian restaurant - very nice and great view.

The make-up of the guests at Melia Las Antillas was young to old and a mixture of English Canadian, French Canadian, German, Russian and Spanish.

Over-all, a great experience. The staff at Melia Las Antillas and the Cuban people in general made us feel very welcome, so much so that we are recommending our parents and their friends visit in January.

Thank you Melia Las Antillas!

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Bilbaoface
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2009

My husband and I just returned from Cuba on Dec.21st. We went for some simple R&R.
The room was great and food and drink always available. We found the staff to be very nice and helpful. Was the food gourmet quality? No. It was not bad. I never left the table hungry and neither did anyone else. The beach was gorgeous and warm despite the time of year.
Maybe it is too low key for some people who want to go, go, go all day long. It was perfect for us. If we wanted entertainment every minute of the day we would have gone to Disneyland. Will we come back? Of course we will!

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank RosebudMapleRidge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 December 2009

Overall a good trip to this resort that I would recommend to others. Do not compare Cuba and Mexico as they are very different places.

Pros:
******
The beach is perfect. Ten out of ten! White sand, no rocks, and blue turquoise water, no seaweed. Rooms are close to the beach. There are however no waiters who bring drinks to you on the beach.

Food is acceptable. We came to Cuba with low expectations of the food but we were happy with it. Good selection of items but they did not change much throughout our trip. Restaurants have no limits on reservations; you can go every day. The coffee is especially good! We were very surprised. We will miss the coffee even in Canada. ‘Juan Dany’ makes great omelettes! The fruit is not so good. I did find a worm in my pineapple one morning. Drinks are good just don’t order a ceaser.

Most staff is very friendly and courteous, however they speak only basic broken English. Special requests would be hard to communicate. Not enough people tip and I highly recommend tipping a peso or two, it will go a long way and you will be remembered. Music is good and DJ ‘Puma’ does a good mix. Nightly shows are OK.

Cons:
*******
Be careful when checking in and don’t be fooled by ‘Mario’ at the front desk. He will whisper in your ear that he is giving you a free room upgrade. He does this to everyone and then asks you to go to the currency place, change your money, and bring him a tip.

No wifi internet. There is no internet included in your stay. The only internet costs 3 pesos/15 min and is painfully slow (dial up). The lady running it will kick you off the second your time is up.

Rooms in general are musty smelling. Building 65 (65xx room numbers) smells like sewage. There is sewage treatment outside of this building. Room fridges do not get re-stocked unless you ask.

All indoor areas are smoky. No smoking sections are needed especially in the lobby area. Everyone will light up their newly purchased Cuban cigars in this area.

My wife and I both had lobster at the seafood restaurant. She got a skin reaction allergy around her lip area. I did not. Be careful as it may have been from this restaurant.

No alarm clock in room.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank sojuman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 December 2009

Our stay at this hotel was absolutely great. The room was super, with coffee-maker, board for ironing, and iron, umbrella, hair-dry. It was a large hotel complex with pools, rivers, bridges, wonderful park. The staff was fabulous, the food excellent, specially ice-cream and fruit. The choice of drinks was superb .Amusement during the whole day, nice beach, everything.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled with friends
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1  Thank ljiljakf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JoseCarlosSanchez, General Manager at Melia Las Antillas, responded to this reviewResponded 23 December 2009

Dear clients:_

We were more than pleased to learn that you had an absolutely good experience a tour resort and that you found everything was just great.

As you stated our beach and facilities are very nice and we proud ourselves for that. We take good care about our gardens and exterior areas so that clients can notice we take care about what they like.

We thank you again for letting us know about your holiday and hope to have you among us in the near future.

Best regards,

José Carlos Sánchez
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Melia Las Antillas

Address: Autopista Sur, Carretera Las Morlas, Km 14, Varadero 42200, Cuba
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Cuba > Matanzas Province > Varadero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Varadero
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Varadero
#11 Family Hotel in Varadero
#12 Romantic Hotel in Varadero
Price Range: £129 - £256 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Melia Las Antillas 3.5*
Number of rooms: 350
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
All Inclusive Four-Star Plus beach resort covering an area of 6 000 m², with rooms distributed in a modern fivestory building and thee-story bungalows.The hotel is situated beachfront, 35 km from the Varadero airport; 40 km form the city of Matanzas and the Tropicana Matanzas Cabaret; 14 km from the town center; 4.5 Km from the Plaza America Convention Center; 5 km from the Varadero Golf Club and only 100 metros from the Dolphinarium.Located in Varadero facing a fabulous strip of beach• Comfortable and cool ambience• Conceived only for adults and youths over 16 years of age.• Central building and bungalows surrounded by green areas and gardens with artificial lakes, pergolas and small wooden bridges.• Main lobby with natural hanging gardens offering a beautiful view of the second lobby on the ground floor and of the manicured hotel gardens.• Junior Suites with balconies offering views of the swimming pool and the surrounding hotel gardens.• Large swimming pool with Jacuzzi, cascades, wading area and platforms with palapas for relaxing or administering massages.• Recreation area and outdoor amphitheater, ideal for a varied cultural activities• Terraces -gardens, with promenades, pergolas, palapas, lakes and parking area for greater enjoyment of outdoor activities.• Varied culinary offers with a la carte and buffet restaurants, bars and fun pub.• VIP Area, offering exclusive services and attentions to clients accommodated in Junior Suites Superior and Suites ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Melia Las Antillas Hotel Varadero
Melia Hotel Varadero
Melia Hotel Las Antillas
Beaches Varadero Cuba

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