We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Mixed Age Group of People and Two Little Kids”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 1 more site!
Blau Marina Varadero Resort
Ranked #37 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Ontario's Near North, Canada
Level Contributor
30 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
“Mixed Age Group of People and Two Little Kids”
Reviewed 13 June 2014

Blau Marina Varadero, Cuba with Small Kids and a Group of Adults

I am a retired Travel Agent and had warned everyone in our group who had never visited Cuba before about how things may not be up to par in our hotel compared to North American/European standards.

I warned them that the food would most likely be bland and hopefully warm but never hot. I warned them that condiments seemed non-existent Cuba and to bring their own. I warned them that the beds would be hard. The closet doors would probably fall off on first opening. The rooms would smell musty – bring a candle. The sand flies and mosquitoes would eat them alive – bring Deep Woods Off.

Everyone was forewarned…over and over. I’m surprised someone didn’t just tell me to shut my pie hole and as it turned out this resort surprised and delighted me! Yes we needed the OFF and yes the room was a bit musty (that’s the way stuff smells in Cuba) and yes the sand flies and mosquitoes were crazy but the Deep Woods Off works best!

Resort size: Because it only has just over 500 rooms – it’s a good medium sized resort. It is however, stretched over a long portion of beach. Pro: The beach is always a stone’s throw from your room no matter where you are. Con: You could be stuck in no man’s land at the far end of the resort and far from the bars and buffet - but there are always golf carts that will pick you up if you don't feel like having a five minute walk. (15 minutes with kids)

Check in: We were stuck at the far end of the resort and with two small kids – we had to request a change of room…now, keep in mind I had already written/emailed the resort and requested rooms close to the pool or buffet. I was assured by Yunior Pérez Sixto -Jefe de Ventas / Sales Manager - Blau Marina Varadero / Blau Privilege Cayo Libertad that we would have the best rooms for a couple of Grandparents in their late 40’s and grandchildren ages 3 and 4. Oh yes, he assured me in many emails that we’d be place appropriately. Can you say PLAYCATE? Here’s his email address maybe you'll have better luck. jefe.ventas@blaumarinavaradero.co.cu

I tried to change rooms but nothing was available for a couple of days, but as soon as those first two days were over we were put in a room with a pool view which was close to everything. Phew! That was excellent and unexpected. The front desk clerk, Judy really went above and beyond and should probably be given Yunior Pérez Sixto’s job!!!!

Buffet: Large buffet with plenty of condiments, lots of options and choice and the food was actually warm to almost hot…and it tasted good! No “drool” factor but it was surprisingly good! If you tip your server – they will actually fight to have you come to their section of the buffet every time you come in the doors. They are serious about taking care of you!

Lunch: Between 10:00 in the morning till about 4:00pm there was a building to eat lunch in directly beside the pool (opposite to where the slide is). If you didn’t want to go to the buffet. You can get a chicken sandwich or a hamburger, some salad - stuff like that. Right – the hamburgers in Cuba are made with a lot of SMOKED SAUSAGE MEAT FOLKS – which means that it is PINK in the middle! You are not going to get ill by eating these. We all ate them! They’re fine! I saw a lot of people take a bite and leave behind their food…I wanted to tell them that it’s smoked sausage meat – but figured I’d better keep my nose out of it. There is also a bar in this building.

Lighthouse Pizza: On the other side of the lobby down a walkway is the Lighthouse, they serve pizza from the afternoon till the wee hours of the morning…I believe until breakfast begins at the buffet. The pizza is good. As I’m a weirdo and like to put salad dressing on my pizza…I took some with me. There is obviously a bar in this building as well.

The Room: I was happy with it. It was a junior suite which simply means it is a large enough room for a small sofa and chair as well as two, one and a quarter beds pushed together. Our maid put a lot of time into making the room beautiful as well as clean. The two kids slept in one half of the bed and my husband and I squeezed into the other side of the bed. We could have stuck one of the kids on the couch, but it worked.

Cuban Beds: The beds are Cuban. Look at the photos – notice how the blankets are so crisply laid at the corners of the bed? That’s because Cuban beds are only slightly better than sleeping on a box spring with a thin layer of mattress on it. At the Blau Marina resort the beds were OK. I’ve slept in worse in Cuba…but I think they all get them from the same manufacturer. If you like an extra firm bed, you’ll be fine. We brought extra pillows! We put them in a vacuum bag, sucked all the air out of them and put them in luggage (leaving them behind when we left). Cuban pillows…well, if you can’t sleep you can always do some Origami! Yes, they are that flat!

Bar Fridge: Want extra beer and water but no Tukola (Cuban Coke)…write a note in Spanish (Google Translate works well enough) and then leave a gift and a peso in the bar fridge with your request. We brought a carry-on bag filled with baseballs and left one or two in the fridge every day with our note “Only beer and water please.” “ La cerveza y el agua solamente por favor!” And even though it was pretty terrible Spanish, they filled the fridge with beer and we received extra water. Mind you, don’t forget to EMPTY the fridge into your suitcase completely before they get there because if you don't they will only replace what you take out.

NOTE: The bar fridge fillers are not the chamber maids – do not ask the chamber maids for more beer. She doesn’t have any. Some guysfill the fridge…thus the baseballs. We had a lot of Crystal beer thanks to those balls and brought most of it home for our friends and family to try.

The Safe: It worked, kept everything safe and we felt secure using it.

Towel Shortage: As there was a mass towel shortage in all of Cuba at the time of our trip (all resorts use the same cleaning facilities/company apparently) we brought a few towels with us. Happy we did! There really was a towel shortage and what could you do about it?

Pool: The water was chilly but the pool was clean. Yes the dreaded “Towel People” were out in the wee hours of the morning claiming the best spots but I always found a lounger. The swim up bar was OK…not as personal as some of the swim up bars I’ve been to in the Dominican…where you’re actually seated at a wooden bar…but it was a typical Cuban concrete swim up bar. The water slide is lots of fun for adults and older kids.

Hemingway's 24 hr Lobby Bar: Great place to gather, cool breeze coming in off the ocean and a lovely open air feeling. The service was very good but once again, bear in mind it’s Cuban service…that’s not an insult…it’s just a more relaxed pace. I write that just as I remember a very busy time at the Lobby Bar when the servers must have put wings on their feet because they were flying. They work very long shifts – so I think they have to pace themselves. When things slow down, they slow down…when things fire up, they fire up. Makes sense to me. Lovely drinks by the way. We tried everything on the drink menu over the course of our holiday. It was fun!

Live music at Hemingway's: The bands they brought in were great! Buy their CD’s – they are great souvenirs and better than dust collectors!

The Beach: Very long stretch of beach with great sand, warm water, lots of room and available loungers. We always stayed closer to the Lighthouse so we could bring Pizza down to the beach and also fill up our “Bubba’s” that we got at Canadian Tire at 50% off. Mind you, bringing down an entire pizza on napkins was fun! You just fold it in half and away you go. A little sand on a pizza never killed us. Remember there is no beach bar and no beach waiters at this resort. No big deal if you have a Bubba!

Kids Club: Ah yes as I mentioned earlier, we had children with us! Our grandchildren age 3 and 4 years old! Insane? Not at all. We had a lot of fun building sand castles with them and when the sun got too much for them they couldn’t wait to go spend an hour with Oxana the woman who looked after the kids club and the Kids Disco. Grandpa and I would tell them we’d be at Hemingway’s and the kids would play with Oxana and a few other kids in the air conditioned Kids Club for an hour every day. It gave us an hour to relax every day and it gave the kids a break from Grandma and Grandpa as well!

Playground: Just outside the Kids Club is a very small fenced in playground with a wading pool. It’s nothing fancy but the kids were happy with it and I was happy with the shade that was available!

Kids Disco: If the kids are able to stay up late enough – let them have some fun and rid themselves of the very last ounce of energy they have stored up from the day. After the kids disco – when we got back to our room – our two little gringos’ would be asleep in five minutes. It was incredible!

Adult Entertainment/Animation Group: Can’t say I saw much of it – but I heard it was entertaining from other members in our group.

Gifting: We bring gifts and leave tips. I know a lot of people are against it but guess what – I am semi-retired and work part time as a bartender! Every tip I receive goes towards my son’s education. Every gift I receive, and surprisingly people do bring me gifts on occasion, is greatly appreciated. Someone on TripAdvisor wrote a huge diatribe on how gifting and tipping is ruining the Cuban people. They said it was akin to some rich guy from Abu Dhabi showing up in my driveway and feeling sorry for me because I only have a house and a car and giving me a hundred thousand dollars…well I can tell you right now, I’d take that money with great appreciation and thank him very much. As someone who appreciates a tip, I tip!

Who to tip: Don’t forget the bathroom ladies. They have the WORST job at the resort and don’t normally receive the cool presents that the room maids are left. I talked to one bathroom maid and she said wistfully, “It is my dream to be a room maid. That is all I want in life.” I just about choked! But alas…compared to constantly cleaning the bathrooms…it would be a dream job. I brought the bathroom maid (standing outside the bathrooms by the buffet) a huge bag of clothes and toiletries. She was over the moon.

Varadero Hop On Bus: Worth the money but keep your ticket stub if you want to ride it again on the same day. The woman at the front of the bus (not the driver) will ask for it back before you get off the bus. This is to stop you from giving it to a friend and thus allowing them to ride for free. I agree, we shouldn’t be ripping off people! BUT if you want to go back on the bus, just tell her that you’re riding again and she’ll let you keep it.

Cuba is what it is – it’s affordable – friendly and safe! You take the good with the not so good and keep your perspective.

We’ll be going back to the Blau Marina Varadero during the winter of 2015. It’s a good resort!

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
19 Thank MGutscher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

2,308 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    522
    711
    540
    278
    257
See reviews for
798
818
93
12
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (689)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Czech first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 May 2014

Let me first say I travel to Cuba often and I have stayed in many resorts in many different areas of Cuba and this Hotel certainly did not disappoint.
Check In
was smooth and organized from the moment of arrival. I arrived at the hotel and they made me feel welcome also I had made some request about rooms that I had booked and given that I booked the trip only 3 days prior to my arrival I was pleasantly surprised when all of the requests had been met.
Staff
All of the staff I had dealings with on this trip were fantastic. Everyone was willing to help out with whatever we needed and went out of their way to ensure my trip was everything I wanted it to be and more. I was also very pleased to see the mangers of the hotel very engaged and interacting with customers. The two ladies who are managing that hotel work so hard and you never see them without a smile, they seem very much to enjoy what they do and work very hard to engage the guest and staff, and ensure everything is up to your standards. Keep up the great work ladies any company here in Canada would be lucky to have staff who seem as dedicated and hard working as you, as a business owner here in Canada I can say that with certainty.
The food
Its Cuba don't expect fine 5 star dinning. If you have realistic expectations there is always something to eat. I certainly didn't see anyone going hungry. The ice cream was delicious and I made my nightly stop at the pasta station where the cook there was always friendly and enjoyed making conversation.
The beach/Pools and Grounds
well kept and beautiful. You can clearly see the pride that the people who manage these areas have in their hotel. Everything is clean and maintained despite the thoughtlessness of some tourists who feel they can just leave garbage and dishes wherever they go. These people who maintain this beautiful hotel deserve to be recognized for their hard work.
overall
I would never hesitate to go to this hotel again it was everything I could have expected or wanted I love Cuba and I love the Blau Marina I would say that I will definitely be back. I will also especially miss the lovely lady who works the pool bar she was awesome.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank 4evermemories
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
66 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 May 2014

A friend and I went for a 1 week stay. The foyer is very nice and clean. The front desk, money exchange, 24 hour bar and evening musical entertainment are all located here. The staff was friendly and helpful. Our room was tidy and fairly clean. We had air conditioning, a restocked fridge everyday, clean towels when requested and for the first 5 days it was very quiet. In fact the resort was extremely quiet with very few people. I enjoyed the food, there was ways a lot to choose from in the buffet. The a la cartes were a little disappointing, but then we just went to the buffet. I did hear people grumble about the food, but then I realize that most of the patrons are concerned with first world problems. The excursions were great and the waters wonderful. I would recommend this resort.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank LivinganAdventure
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brampton, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 May 2014

This is my first review ever but I want to share my experience with the things I find important when looking on trip advisor.

Beach/Pool:
The Beach was amazing. It was long spacious and beautiful. There was never an issue finding a lounge chair. But if you want the front row closest to the beach you may need to be up a tad earlier. The resort was not that busy while I was there and I had no problem getting front row around 9 am.
The Pools are great. The weather while I was there was very windy. Because of this the beach was cooler and sand was flying around. However the buildings block the wind and the pool area was PERFECT! Both beach and pool bar staff were amazing and did their best to remember your order for when you came back!!

Staff:
The staff made this resort! Everyone was so kind, friendly and full of energy. A special shout out to CHINO!, Uni, Pedro, Roberto, and a few others, who I sadly do not remember their names, for making this vacation that much more memorable. The dancing lessons, endless entertainment and friendships made my trip that much more amazing.

Food:
Its Cuba. I am a very basic eater at home and had no issues finding food here. The omelet station, pasta station and pizza station were fantastic in keeping me full all week long. some people brought their own hot sauce for flavor and I thought that was a great idea.

Guests/Disco/Nightly entertainment:
As I mentioned earlier the resort was not that busy while I was there. There was a tad more older guests but I had no issues making friends my own age (25-35) and even hung out with some staff members. Never a dull moment.
The disco was mainly empty most nights. But grab a few friends and take up some of those dancing lessons or just go a little nuts. The best disco night for me involved 6 people.
Clubbing off the resort is very easy to do. Ask a staff member for recommendations on which club to go to on which night. Certain nights are more popular at certain clubs. Catching a cab from the hotel is easy and will cost approx 20-30 pesos. International, Mambo Club, Beatles Bar and Havana Club are some of the clubs.

Hotel grounds:
The lay out is great. You never have to walk too far to get to any place on the resort. Some of the rooms and areas around the hotel need a little TLC. But I had no concerns. Most of the public washrooms were out of order. This can be an issue with a fuller resort and doesn't look good when so many things are left unfixed.

Nightly entertainment:
Performances are great! But on participation night. If you run on stage and know the name of the song.....be prepared to sing it after.....I was not prepared!! Haha.

BUGS:
Mosquitos......they love me anywhere and I was attacked big time on the first night. That being said....I am pretty sure I was the only one who got it that bad (min 50 bites on my calfs). Be prepared with lots of bug spray and bug lotions.

This was second trip to Cuba and I left falling back in love with the country.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank TayeML
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 May 2014

This is the first time I am writing a review ever, but my time at this resort was so good that I had to share.

Hotel staff made the entire stay so welcoming and enjoyable. The night shows really are the best and great resort entertainment. During the day there was always something going on - a few activities I did which were fun, beach volleyball, aqua aerobics, live band procession by the pool, salsa lessons..

The buffet/restaurants could do with a little tweaking but generally there was always enough choice to eat and the bar had plenty of drink choices (and this is coming from quite a fussy drinker) - bar staff were more than happy to help create the perfect drink for you! The snack bar available till 6am is perfect for a bite to eat after a night out and they never failed to serve up a fresh made sandwich or even a hot dog at that time!

Rooms were made up daily but it is true what they say in other reviews - you do have to ask for almost everything to be done, which is a bit of a drag but once we told the maid, it was done. e.g give new towels, change bedding etc.. so things you would expect to be done daily in a hotel anyway but here its just different I guess. I personally had no problem asking since the maids were all sweet and happy to do as asked so it was no big deal.

All in all a great stay - Cuba as a whole is a beautiful place with the friendliest people I have seen yet..go with an open mind and you will not be disappointed!

I have and will continue to recommend this resort to everyone and I want to thank ALL the staff that were there during our stay (May 12th - 19th 2014) especially Chino & Uni for teaching us the salsa and meringue dance moves!!

Surely hope to visit again!

Room Tip: we stayed in block 11 - which was located perfectly for the beach, pool and reception area
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Zainab M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, Canada
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 May 2014

We all liked it very much. Michael Niester, the hotel concierge, was very friendly and gave us a quick ride in the golf carts. The rooms were very clean and spacious. The groundskeepers were always around keeping the resort clean. The bartenders were friendly and offered good service. The buffet staff were always nice and served us promptly. Whenever we would go to the buffet, Yailin Aranquren, the waitress, always had a table ready for us. We are going back for sure next year.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Constanta C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 May 2014

We were at Blau Marina April 27th to May 12th, 2 weeks. This was the 4th time we visited Cuba. This resort was by far the cleanest we have ever encountered, Rated a four star, should be a 5 star, hands down. Resort is only 8 years old. There is a kids pool and a adult pool. There is a customer service lady sitting in the lobby daily. The service is unreal, there is nothing they wont look after. The people working there are friendly and helpful. I'm a travel advisor and would recommend this resort to anyone that wants to go to Cuba. Give this resort a try, believe me, you wont be sorry. I know I'm going to go back, for sure. CHEERS!!

Room Tip: We stayed in the Beach View. Buildings 11 and 12, I think are the best.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Jacqui B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Varadero hotels
8.0 mi away
Barcelo Solymar Arenas Blancas Resort
0.3 mi away
Hotel Melia Marina Varadero
1.6 mi away
Ocean Varadero El Patriarca
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
5.1 mi away
Sol Palmeras
Sol Palmeras
#8 of 64 in Varadero
4.0 of 5 bubbles 5,913 reviews
7.7 mi away
Sol Sirenas Coral Resort
Sol Sirenas Coral Resort
#36 of 64 in Varadero
3.5 of 5 bubbles 4,892 reviews
1.1 mi away
Grand Memories Varadero
Grand Memories Varadero
#35 of 64 in Varadero
3.5 of 5 bubbles 1,993 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Blau Marina Varadero Resort? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Blau Marina Varadero Resort

Property: Blau Marina Varadero Resort
Address: Autopista Sur final Punta Hicacos, Varadero, Cuba
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #37 of 64 Hotels in Varadero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Blau Marina Varadero Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 548
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Blau Marina Varadero Resort***** All Inclusive, is a luxurious hotel surrounded by beautiful gardens and unforgettable views that offers its clients superb service and comfortable environment. The 548 rooms and all the installations of 5 star All Inclusive hotel Blau Marina Varadero Resort***** offer the perfect combination for memorable family vacations. Blau Marina Varadero Resort***** offers its clients: Complete Twin rooms, Twins with Sea View and Suites All Inclusive package 6 Restaurants 6 Bars Daily and night animation 2 tennis courts 1 universal court Beach volleyball Non-motorized water sports (catamaran, snorkelling, windsurf) Fitness and aerobics rooms Parking 3 pools for adults 1 pools for children Playground Sport Club (library, billiard, ping pong...) Conference hall with capacity of 300 seats Business centre Souvenirs and boutique Wifi (Looby and meeting room. With charge) Blau Marina Varadero Resort***** ALL INCLUSIVE: Breakfast, lunch and dinner in Buffet restaurant Typical Cuban dinner once a week Selection of national and international drinks (top brands with extra cost) 2 tennis courts Courts reservation and necessary equipment 1 universal court Beach volleyball Petanca Non-motorized water sports (catamaran,water cycles, snorkelling, windsurf) Fitness and aerobics rooms Parking Access to all the shows in “La Senora de Atocha” every night Mini bar daily filled with 1 bottle of water, 2 soft drinks, 2 bottles of local beer 3 pools for adults 1 pool for children Area for children in main pool Playground 3 dinners per booking per week in our "a la carte" restaurants (reservation required) Snacks in Pool Bars ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with TripOnline SA, Traveltool, S.L.U., Holiday Gems, LoveHolidays, Travel Republic (UK), Cancelon and Evoline ltd so you can book your Blau Marina Varadero Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing