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Melia Cayo Santa Maria
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Reviews (4,580)
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791 - 796 of 4,580 reviews
Reviewed 1 June 2014

This has been my favorite place in Cuba, the one I have called home for many years now. I just returned from a relaxing one week stay at Melia Cayo Santa Maria but this trip left me a little disappointed in some aspects. There has been some changes, not all for the good but what is most disappointing is what has not changed (except for the excellent staff and attentive service that is still amazing of course).

Again this year, the A/C issues are resurfacing. There was closure of part of the hotel to try and "control" the problem. Luckily, I was not affected so much but my room's A/C was barely keeping the room comfortable when cranked up to coolest setting. This hotel runs on an old A/C system design that often breaks and gets patched up every year. What it really needs is a total redo which would mean a big investment and hotel closure for a while. Not an easy decision to make.

Another disappointment is the public washrooms. These need to be renovated and/or repaired. The ones by the lobby bar are fine but the ones by the pool and at the Ranchon are long overdue.

My room was great! Loved it. It was spacious, kept clean, everything was working well, no bugs, my fridge was filled every day. It was close to everything and I had a great view of the pool. The beach towels were in the room upon arrival.

As this was low season, as expected, there was closure of the buffet for lunch and dinner sometimes to avoid food waste. Other food venues were open like the italian restaurant offered spaghetti for lunch, the beach bar had the usual fresh menu and BBQ and the always open 24H snack bar which also served very good food. For dinner, the a la carte were are all good and were open on a rotation every night. The repeat customer meal was at the French and was very good. My only complaint food wise was the breakfast at the buffet. Used to be my favourite meal of the day but I found the offering to be of lesser quality and variety this time. There was no hashbrowns or croquetas the entire week I was there which used to be always available. Otherwise, there was lots of cheeses, deli meat, fresh fruits, yogurts, croissants and pastries to choose from. You can never go wrong with the cooking stations. Frank and Daniel made great crepes, eggs, omelet, fish, meat however you wanted. Always excellent. One change that is definitely not for the best is the new rule of no live music in the restaurants and that includes the buffet, the a la carte restaurants, the ranchon, the snack bar, etc. So no more live harpist or guitarist to listen to in the a la carte while you enjoy a meal. No fun interactive Black and White or other bands while you are having lunch at the ranchon or snack bar. This kills the fun relaxed cuban feel of the resort. It makes the meals quite boring at times in my honest opinion. I vote for bringing the music and soul back to the hotel at meal times!

There were lots of cats and kittens this time around. I wish people would follow the hotel's rule and stop feeding them. Don't they realize that doing so creates more problems for the clients, the hotel and the cats in the end?

The grounds are clean and beautifully landscaped and the gardens are breathtaking. There are so many nooks and spots to enjoy and relax in around the resort. A few tables and chairs or hammocks setup here and there amongst the gardens. The pools were greenish and slimy at times during my stay which was a first ever in my experience. This pool has always been extra clean before. I heard this was due to a chlorine shortage at the hotel. I hope it has been rectified. I still spent some time at the excellent pool bar where Osbiel and Yoset do an amazing job at taking drink orders around the pool, mixing them and entertaining us all at the same time.

The beach is as gorgeous as always. Clean wide white sandy beach and blue turquoise ocean. A bit of a step in the sand to get down to the water this time around but that can change daily! A few days of calm ocean but mostly red flags days during my stay which was ok with me as it kept the bugs away. I enjoy just sitting at the beach bar enjoying the view with the ocean breeze. Nestor, the bartender, is always keeping the place clean and the customers happy.

Always had fun with the entertainers whether its day or night or rain or shine. Arel, Denise, Orlando, Ernesto are working hard to make sure that everyone has a great time.

Enjoyed my evenings with great drinks and ambiance at the lobby bar and at the French/Japanese bar with Bladimir. Always professional and a great drink mixer! I also enjoyed my routine cappuccino at the lobby bar. The whole team of bartenders and waiters here are excellent.

A shout out to the front reception desk staff and bellboys who work so hard every day and we don't always realize it.

Thanks to the Customer Service gang that makes this hotel run as smoothly as possible even with the issues and that still manage to make the guest feel happy and special. Hope to see Heriberto on my next trip!

Most customers I spoke with were very happy with their stay and would come back again. It seems the repeat guests were the ones noticing the issues more. This is certainly not my last stay at Melia Cayo Santa Maria. The 5* service, the comfortable relaxing amenities and tropical feel of this hotel are what keeps the repeat customer family growing. I think that with a few changes and fixes, this hotel could be closer to #1 in Cayo Santa Maria. I like to call it the "Jewel" of Cayo Santa Maria. :)

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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5  Thank nadma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jorge B, General Manager at Melia Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this reviewResponded 2 June 2014

Dear Nadma

Receive our most respectful greeting from sunny Cuba.
We heartily appreciate you honest review. We understand some of our services did not exactly meet all your expectations but we thank your giving us the chance to identify these improvement opportunities.
Your comments have been a reliable guide to start correcting some of these issues that impair our guests can have a memorable vacation, such as the food style and selection. We have been working really hard in this respect and we hope that, with the arrival of our new executive chef we will be able to achieve higher levels of satisfaction in this area. Concerning the issues of the public bathrooms, urgent measures have been taken in order to fix them. There were a few rooms that presented troubles with the AC, which fortunately have already been solved.
It will always be a pleasure to welcome you at Melia Buenavista as our guests. Please, give us the chance to serve one more time.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 May 2014

Just back from another trip to this hotel.
Had a very nice time.
The food was good in the buffet if I went to one of the stations where it was cooked in front of you. The food in the trays was cold and unappetizing. Beach and pool restaurants served good food. Service was efficient and friendly as usual.
My room was kept spotless by Alexei the room attendant.
The grounds as always looked beautiful.
I spoke to two different first timers that told me they will definitely return and a big part of that decision is the staff.
During this visit half the bungalows had to be shut down and guests moved to keep the air running in the remaining bungalows. The buffet was very hot without air some days and closed for a few dinners. The water was not hot in some rooms until late in the week.
Manager after manager has promised to address the air conditioning and water issues and never solved. Time for someone to step up and fix these issues.
This is a great hotel with an intimate feel and amazing staff. Hope it can remain a wonderful and comfortable place to visit.
I also sent this information to Melia and Gaviotta.
Thanks for such wonderful times, hope to be able to continue them.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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6  Thank cubasiempre
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jorge B, General Manager at Melia Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this reviewResponded 2 June 2014

Dear friends from Toronto, Canada
We very much appreciate your review which points out some very interesting matters. I understand your experience has not been totally perfect but you can take for granted that all your comments will be well taken into consideration as part of our systematic improvement process. I would also like you to know that, more than working in the hotel I live in and it is a pleasure for me to receive, directly from our guests or through my management team members, any comments, suggestions or critics from our customers since they constitute a valuable guide to orient our efforts. I would have really appreciated your approaching us while still in resort, in which case, we could have been now responding a review from a happier client. We understand it is time for us to address important issues such as the air conditioning and water; so accurate measures are being taken in order to fix those equipments for our customers not to complaint about them anymore.
We thank you again for your review hoping you reconsider your thoughts by paying us another visit. You would have the opportunity to enjoy the new Meliá Cayo Santa María.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2014

twelve friends went here in march the beach is beautiful but the surf was ruff all week we went in any way despite red flags.the pool was awesome alot of our group spent most days there had alot of fun . the ala carte could not accomadate 12 people at once and the ones who did go found alot of items on the menu were not available.I found the buffet conjested the food was ok but alot in the group did not like it breakfast is best meal.the drinks especially pina coladas from the beach bar the best and Rigberto the best waiter there..The rooms were clean very nice resort all over.everyone of us had a great time and that is what we went for

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank karen s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jorge B, General Manager at Melia Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this reviewResponded 2 June 2014

Dear Guest
Receive our most respectful greeting from sunny Cuba.
We heartily appreciate you honest review. We understand some of our services did not exactly meet all your expectations but we thank your giving us the chance to identify these improvement opportunities.
Your comments have been a reliable guide to start correcting some of these issues that impair our guests can have a memorable vacation, such as the food style and selection. We have been working really hard in this respect and we hope that, with the arrival of our new executive chef we will be able to achieve higher levels of satisfaction in this area.
It will always be a pleasure to welcome you at MCSM as our guests. Please, give us the chance to serve one more time.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2014

Myself and my partner travelled to Cayo Santa Maria last September from Manchester and had a fabulous 2 weeks away in paradise!

All the staff were amazing and so helpful, especially the animation team, Ozzy @ the pool bar and our Thomas Cook holiday rep Jorge. We had such an amazing holiday and it's a shame that Thomas Cook have stopped their flights to Santa Clara.

The only slight problem we had was the food, for 2 weeks it all started to become a bit samey, but we expected that as Cuba isn't really renowned for it's food. However, we absolutely loved the BBQ lunches and the chefs in the main restaurant were great and made the most delicious fried rice!

They also organised a birthday cake for me in the French restaurant, which was a lovely surprise

I wouldn't hesitate in recommending Melia to anyone wanting a great value all inclusive holiday in Cuba.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank clairedlanc21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jorge B, General Manager at Melia Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this reviewResponded 4 June 2014

Dear clairedlanc21
We have been delighted to deserve your review. It feels very rewarding to acknowledge, through your words, that you found exactly what you needed while staying at Melia Cayo Santa Maria. We will extend your comments to our staff since they would certainly be very motivated by your compliments.
All your comments and suggestions regarding what could be considered our "less-strong points" have been well taken into consideration. So far, we have made some important renovations and changes which seem to be working, according to our recent guests feedback. You will love to return, that is for sure!

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Reviewed 26 May 2014

It was the perfect vacation, the pools and beach were beautiful and all the staff was smiling and happy. They were there to help with whatever needs we had. I'm extremely picky when it comes to food, last vacation to punta cana I ate plain noodles once a day, at Melia Cayo Santa Maria I ate more then I should have, everything was amazing. The only problem I had was we had cockroaches in our room but other then that it was amazing.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Tanya V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jorge B, General Manager at Melia Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this reviewResponded 2 June 2014

Dear Guest
We very much appreciate your synthetic and well focused characterization of our touristic product. I believe that your review may certainly help other travelers while choosing a destination that would really suit their needs and expectations. Your nice praising comments constitute some valuable motivation for all our staff to keep on working on providing guests a memorable vacation. Thank you so much!
Kind Regards,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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