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“Purrfect”

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Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Ranked #1 of 15 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Certificate of Excellence
Pitt Meadows, Canada
1 review
“Purrfect”
Reviewed 17 January 2013

My wife and were at the Royalton between Dec 20 and Jan 3 and must say that the staff were awesome, the resort is beautiful and the beaches fantastic.
we have travelled quite a bit over the past 15 years and i think this may have been one of the nicest resorts we have been to.
The staff are all 5 star i can not say enough good things about them.
As the resort is brand new there were minor hiccups but nothing to complain about.
What can I say about the beach - absolutely beautiful, powder white sand, a great beach boy who cleaned off the beach chairs, kept the guests from other resorts off our beach chairs (first time I have seen that anywhere).
Entertainment was great, something new each night, although it was repeated in the second week.
Food overall was good, the Snack Shack had great burgers, and the lunches at Eggcellence were good. Dinners were allright but i would recommend going to the small town (Pueblo Estella) there were some very good dining spots there.
Overall i would reccomend the Royalton to anyone who is looking for a quiet relaxing vacation a great place to recharge you batteries.
A very special thank you to Mario, Frank and Emillio (entertainment staff) they were really great and the the bartender on the beach - never had to ask for a drink he just kept bringing them LOL
Martin and Sue

Room Tip: pick an ocean view room - listening to the ocean at night is like a lullaby
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Mhufty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 28 January 2013
Dear guests:

You were with us for Christmas and New Year’s!!! Didn’t we have a blast?? Thank you so much for choosing us to ring in 2013, a beautiful gesture of confidence and trust! You know that at Royalton we do everything in our power for our guests to be happy, even all the way down to the beach!

We are honored to be in your top places to visit even after 15 years! You must have seen and been to very beautiful places, what an honor! Aren’t our Royalton Burgers the best ever? We can’t get enough of them! It is true that you can dine well in the little Pueblo next door for a small fee, but we are happy to report many changes in the menus since you have left and they are getting better and better every day!! We have 7 different menus for 7 different days now! Amazing international experiences every night!!

Thank you for being so generous dear guests, it was such a treat to have you with us!

We very much look forward to welcome you once again to Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, where we strive for perfection!
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Ottawa, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2013

We are frequent travelers to Cuba, we go at least twice per year and this trip was not good at all.
We are not fussy and normally stay at places like Playa Pesquero, Melia Las Dunas and 4 or 4 1/2 star hotels, so we have something to compare.
We were really looking forward to this vacation and were greatly disappointed. The food was bad, the service was terrible, took 2 hours to get a cold plate, soup and main course, regularly, not just on one occasion. Items on the menu were not available, many days. The same menu everyday.
Only one restaurant with two names, but it is the same place and one snack bar for 24 hr service. Reception staff were rude and would not give us change for 20 pesos, had to ask the wait staff to change the money.
Butler service was non existent, came one time to our room to give us our dinner reservations, for 8:45. we told him that was too late, so he changed the next one to 6:45 then all the rest were at 8:30 or 8:45, so we just showed up at 7:00 and they let us in.
They do not offer you much wine at the meal unless you ask for more.
The toilet broke (they fixed it right away, but still it is a new resort) and we had no hot water for the first 3 days, only warm water. Again, they fixed it right away but still..........
The beach is fantastic and nice a quiet.
the entertainment was pretty poor, no Cuban musicians wandering around which is one of the main reasons why we come to Cuba.
All I can say is that if you like to sit around doing nothing and don't mind spending 2 hours getting your meal, and if you like to listen to the same music day after day at the pool, and if you are happy to feel like you are in a morgue then this is the place for you!
We will definitely not be back to this resort.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
18 Thank Lynne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Omar D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 23 February 2013
Dear guests:

Well, you certainly cannot be as dissapointed as we are. We are very preocupied with your comment as although we collect all comments, positive and negative in order to guide ourselves to a better us constantly, we do not believe your comments are fair.

It seems that the concept of a small tranquil hotel is not what you are used to referring to the hotels you have mentionned in your other travels. Even though they are of 4 stars and in Cuba, the concept is completely different. Small boutique hotels do not have a lot of animation and shows. What we offer is more of a soft activity program which is totally the opposite of the hotels you have mentionned.

As far as rececpcion, it happens on rare occasions that unfortunately the exchange money runs out as all the clients exchange their money there. It is not that we do not want to give the service or that the staff is rude, actually, they were trying to help you with changing your money with another department.

We are also dissapointed to read your comments as since during your visit the weather was not very nice, it was difficult to stay around the pool and the beach. But even then we did try to animate as much as we could, as we are the first to know how important good weather is to your so awaited vacation. Our animation staff remember you well, and tried to please you with the activities you asked for and more, as all of us did here at Royalon Cayo Santa Maria, including the management.

We do not believe our new little gem is like a morgue, quite the contrary, it is like a little peace of heaven, where peaceful music, relaxed service and a genuine desire to make your vacation unforgettable from all departments awaits you.

We thank you for your comments. We believe that everyone has an opinion and we respect that.

We sincerely hope that you enjoy your next vacation while here at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, we will continue to dedicate ourselves to our clients and to forging our little paradise.
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Brampton, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 January 2013

To Noelvis - (who we named ELVIS) - Holiday Dec 8th - 15th 2012.

Sorry for not commenting earlier as we have been busy back in Canada.

We had the most wonderful holiday at th Royalton Resort. Everthing was just perfect ie....
The room was beautiful and well taken care of by our Maid Midiala at Bungalow #2.
Noelvis and Frank our Butlers was always very attentive and went out of their way to make sure we had everything we needed to make our stay comfortable (Job well DONE!!!).

At both the restaurants we would like to thanks the following staff for making every meal an enjoyable one.. Yurien, Kirenia, Bellkys, Leon, Mario Anne, Janet, Judy and some of the other staff that we had forgotten to get their names.

Sunset Snack Bar.. Thank you Diamela for making lunchtime enjoyable.and being such a pleasant person with a big smile.

Mario who was the entertainment (fun person) you always took the time to chat and let us know what was going on in the evenings - We wish you and your future wife all the happiness in the world on Feb 14th your VERY SPECIAL DAY ..

To the Manage of the Royalton you should be proud to have such a fantastic group of people working at the RESORT.

Hope to see you all again!!

From Cheryl & Max

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
34 Thank cheryl g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 22 January 2013
Dear guests:

Oh my!! You are one of our first guest! Thank you so much for remembering us! We sure remember you!! We appreciate so much that you took the time to post your comments, we know that life at home gets so busy after coming back from vacation, especially right before Christmas!

So much has changed since your visit! You will have to come back and see for yourself! And don’t worry, all of the management team is extremely proud of all of our workers! Our little gem would not be the same without your dear guests, but not without them either! We make sure that they see the comments you send and it makes them want to work even harder to satisfy all of your needs!

Thank you very much once again for your beautiful and generous comments! We are very proud to have made your vacation memorable in our second week of opening…How time flies! We will be open two months soon!

All of our Royalton family sincerely hopes that you will be back and visit us very soon, everybody sends a warm hello!
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 January 2013

This review should have been sent earlier but oh well. I stayed on this property from Dec 1-4. This hotel is absolutely amazing.

The food is great. Everything on this resort is a la cart. NO buffet which is an awesome change to the regular all inclusive. The only issue was it took a bit long to get your food. I was there opening day so I'm pretty sure they worked that kink out.

The service AWESOME!! Key staff that made this trip amazing was Laniel, Martin, Daniel, Janet, Dennis and Yeni. Always smiling, always ready to go that extra mile. The dancers are soooo talented. They did a Michael Jackson tribute and I completely lost my voice because I was going nuts. Who doesn't love Michael??!

The resort was clean, the rooms were perfect except the toilets. I don't know if there was low water pressure but sometimes the toilets wouldn't flush. Just call maintenance and you'll be fine.

Overall I love this resort. I would highly recommend it to anyone; girlfriends trip, a trip for the guys, honeymoon, couples trip... I'll say it one more time.... AWESOME!!!

Room Tip: Any room on this resort is great but what makes it better is the view. Make sure you get ocean view
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
27 Thank Rebekah R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 22 January 2013
Dear guests:

Ha! Another first-timer! Thank you, thank you, thank you for remembering us! It was great having you with us at the resort during our first opening days, you and your group were awesome!

Yes, the water pressure kink got worked out very quickly!! Our water pressure is great and so is the hot water! The hotel is getting better and better by the minute thanks to the help of all of our workers but also because of you dear clients, who take the time to let us know every little detail that you would like to see for us to become the best 5-star hotel in Cuba. Great team work don’t you think?

And you are right, the Michael Jackson tribute over at Memories hotel is amazing! They have many great shows there that our Royalton clients can enjoy as they have full and exclusive access to our sister complex! Although the product is different, fixated more on families and action while we are all about tranquililty and well-being, it is great that you can adjust which hotel you want to spend time in depending on your mood!

Thank you once again for remembering us!! We very much hope to welcome you once again to Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, come see how much we have improved!
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Port Elgin, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2013

We stayed from Jan 5. to the 12th in building number 6 with an ocean view room. Ocean view was wonderful. You could see the ocean from pretty much anywhere in the room due to the layout and the large inside window from the bathroom to the main room.There was a large deck with a large patio door looking out at the ocean. I enjoyed a few cigars and drinks out on the deck.
Buildings 5 and 6 are in prime locations. They are right beside the lower pool, the snack bar and the path to the beach. I would recomend them if your the choice of buildings. The buildings by the ocean have 4 upper rooms and 4 lower rooms. The rooms are large and spacious. There is a large soaker tub as well as a large built in shower with a waterfall shower head.

We had what they called butlers, but I really thought of them more as concierges They made dinner reservations and were pretty much available all day to deal with any issues that may arise. They were very helpful and responded immediately. However, it sometimes was just as easy to deal with it yourself then try and find them. Although they were very good at knowing your schedule and they seemed to be able to find you pretty easy. Mind you it is not a big resort.

The check in process was one of the smoothest I have had. We were greated off the bus with a tropical drink and a cold towel to freshen up with. Within 3 minutes we were on our way to our room in a golf cart, Our bags followed us about 10 minutes later.

One day there was an issue with no clean beach/pool towels until later in the day. That evening when we came back from supper, we had fresh pool towels. Every evening while at dinner, the room was freshened up and chocolates placed on our pillows.

What we liked:

the beach...the sand is like icing sugar
the peaceful relaxation
the food and drink selection
the staff
the smallness of the resort (only 120 or so rooms)
the entertainment was top notch and varied
no buffets
lots of room around the pool or beach

there is not much to not like.
If you wanted some night life, it was close by in the "town" next door or the Memories resort.

I would highly recommend for a couple looking for a nice relaxing week away.

Room Tip: Building 5 or 6 near the ocean. Room 605 is a corner room with a beautiful ocean view.
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
44 Thank maple_leaf_m27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 24 January 2013
Dear guests:

We love your title! It explains exactly what we are! Your comments are straight, to the point and very interesting to read! Thank you for describing us so well!!

Some people agree and disagree about two major issues at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria: Buffet and Entertainment. Some would prefer a buffet, some are happy with the a la carte service. Some think it is too quiet, while others wouldn’t have it any other way.

For general information, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria does not have a buffet. It only serves in a la carte restaurants. We also have some very light entertainment and activities such as stretching, Spanish lessons, walks on the beach, board games, learning how to play dominoes etc…Nightly entertainment consists in live classical music or signers, flamenco dancing and aquatic ballet. The shows finish around 21:45 to 22:00 every night.

For those who are looking for a little more excitement, our Royalton clients are free to use the Memories Azul and Paraiso buffets and to enjoy the shows presented in their theater every night.

Thank you so much for your generous comments dear guests. We surely hope to have the pleasure to welcome you once again for another relaxing vacation at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria!
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Winnipeg
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2013

My husband and I were at the Royalton for the week of January the 5th. This was my second time to Cuba, and his first. What follows are some observations that I hope will be helpful to people interested in this resort. I’ll try to break it down into titled categories so that areas of interest are easy to find. Please feel free to contact me with any specific questions.
Also, before I begin, I want to extend special thanks to the following Royalton staff, who were wonderful to us during our stay: Friendly servers Reydel and TiaMella at the Snackbar; Alex and Ramòn (butlers); Yurien (an ever-smiling bartender and all-round super guy); Yasmini (sp?) and Sandy at the beach bar who always made time for us, as well as delicious drinks); Frank Carrera (entertainment) who is a huge JRR Tolkien fan should anyone share a similar passion; the young man whose name I forget, but who brushed off our beach loungers for us every morning; Jany - our excellent housekeeper; Janylis (sp?) at reception. These excellent staff members “make” the Royalton experience, and went out of their way to ensure we had a fantastic vacation. It is my express hope that Sunwing and the Royalton management provide a superior work environment and all of the resources and training needed for them to continue to provide such great service. I hope they are well-rewarded with respect, opportunities for advancement, a great working environment and whatever benefits can be made available. I say this based on my own personal convictions, and having been humbled by the excellent service. I didn’t get to know everyone’s names, but have to say that the staff is, by far, the most superior aspect of the Royalton experience. (That being said, management staff did not go out of their way to say hello, or to introduce themselves to us, but may have done so with other guests. I specifically asked about Omar, to thank him for his responses on Trip Advisor, but was not introduced. Oh well. Omar, if you are reading this, thanks for taking an interest in what people have to say, and responding so graciously) Cubans are well-educated, articulate, respectful, resourceful, creative and friendly people. At the Royalton, the only chance of ‘people’ tainting your vacation might be fellow Canadians (some of whom can be inconsiderate and uncouth; and on this note, the Royalton is not a “party” resort, and I really hope it stays that way in order to offer a unique alternative to other, more “animated” resorts; there is also no need to “mark your spot” with towels and then not return for hours – selfish and unnecessary at this property)

Beach-life

For me, this is the most important aspect of a “beach” vacation.
Upside: The beach the Royalton is beautiful. It rivals any beach I’ve seen in the Dominican, Hawaii, Jamaica and the other Cuban destination I’ve visited, Varadero. If you like powdery sand and turquoise water, you will not be disappointed. The water is shallow, and therefore quite warm. Every morning, the beach is also groomed, and as the Royalton is a small resort, its portion of beach tends to be quiet, with ample loungers and shaded areas. For beach activities, you can ask at the entertainment kiosk (near the lower pool area) for sports equipment…Everything is à la carte, and there are few organized activities (thankfully, for us, as we really desired peace) There are Catamarans that take people out for rides (included resort activity) and are quite fun.
Note: on windy days (and it can be very windy), the waves can be somewhat aggressive; fun to play in, but not great for swimming.

Downside: If you want to use any of the aquatic equipment, it’s a bit of a trek to the kiosk at the “Memories” portion of the beach. While this ensures a quieter environment at the Royalton beach, it could be conceived as inconvenient to some. Also, there are no snacks readily available near the beach. A bartender from the beach bar (set above the beach) will take regular drink orders, but for food, you need to go up to the pool area or snack bar. (as a result, there are few to no seagulls hovering around)
Note: this is not a good beach for snorkeling, but snorkeling is available through purchased excursions

The Property

Landscape: Plants and flowers are growing/developing, landscaping is attended to daily, garbage is promptly removed (saw no litter) and, as the resort is new, everything looks lovely. It’s not uncommon for the security guard to hand the ladies a handmade flower, or for one of the gardeners to offer a fresh cut bloom in the morning.
Rooms: We had a Junior King Suite, ground floor bungalow style with a garden view. The room layout is fantastic, with a small patio and sitting area. That being said, some of the workmanship was subpar…the alignment of the shower door does not allow for it to close completely, the paint around the showerhead at the tub is not water-resistant, the grout-work in the bathroom is sloppy, the caulking is starting to pull away from the tub, our sliding door didn’t lock properly (was promptly fixed, however, when we called the front desk) the safe also stopped working the day we left. Also, the décor is Spartan, and the bed very firm. A couple of lights did not work, a couple of outlets were blocked and only one lamp could be plugged in. In order for the Royalton to remain 5 Star, they will need to see to these details and to upkeep the rooms consistently. We were not too fussy about the details, but I do know other people who might be expecting more in a 5 star.

Friends of our splurged for a two-floor Cabana, complete with an ocean view from a Jacuzzi on the balcony – superb!

Pools: There are two pools, each spotlessly clean, the loungers and poolside beds also very clean. They’ve added plants around the pool areas, which makes them quite nice as well. The size of the pools is more than adequate for the capacity of the resort. They are not heated, however, and the upper pool (by the lobby) was particularly crisp and not pleasant for swimming on a windy day. There is a well-serviced bar located beside each pool.

Reception/Lobby area

This is open air, and looks through to the upper infinity pool, then down over the rest of the property. The two main restaurants are located near the lobby, and the Royalton Café (lobby bar) is adjacent. There is plenty of seating, and on any given evening, the lobby is alive with resort guests lounging, visiting, drinking and enjoying the scheduled entertainment. My only comment here is that there is no facility on site for internet. I don’t go on holiday to use the internet, but can appreciate parents wanting to stay connected with their families, and executives needing to connect with their companies. A five-star resort should make this available to their guests.

Location

A 1.5-2 hr busride from the airport, but well worth the distance, and although the air conditioning is over-the-top (dress warmly if you hate being cold) the busses are really quite comfortable. the resort is adjacent to a shopping complex, and to other resorts that offer included activities. We were not there for that, and so can't comment.

**Memories is REALLY busy - walk out the hotel drive, turn right and walk a few minutes to the parking lot of the Husa resort next door. Rent a scooter for 12CUCs (hour, but only 3CUCs for additonal hours) and have some fun riding around. They close at four PM.

Check-in/Check-out

We arrived very late, and check in felt disjointed. It was dark, and I nearly walked into the pool when trying to find my room. Our keys were provided in an envelope as soon as we arrived, but this left no opportunity to check out the room in advance. Bellboys took our luggage to our room, but we were required to wait for them to arrive before getting the chance to have a drink and some food. One couple that arrived with us was not given a room. It took quite some time for the hotel to acknowledge that there was no room available at the level the booked, and to upgrade them to another one (my understanding is that they finally got checked in at 3:30 in the morning, an hour and a half after arriving) This could be due to booking the trip late, and a miscommunication between Sunwing and the hotel, which can happen sometimes when people book last minute (it happened to me on my first trip to Cuba with Sunwing) However, one should expect, at such a late hour, to not have to wait for a room.

Guests who arrive during the day are generally greeted by their personal butlers. This is advantageous, as we had no one to show us around, answer questions and address concerns. We finally met our butler at the end of the first day, and it was never made clear to us how we might meet him, where, or at what time. His name was not left in our room, nor any instructions. If the experience for the guests is intended to help them relax and feel at ease, this system needs to be addressed for guests arriving ‘after hours’.

Room Service

This was ‘hit and miss’ according to others with whom we spoke. In our case, it took an hour and a half to receive a couple of towels, so we didn’t dare order food to the room. Others had more efficient experiences. Issues with the room, however, were promptly addressed, which was appreciated.

The Food and drinks

You won’t go hungry, as food is readily available, 24 hours at the snack bar (or via room service), and at certain times during the day at Eggsellence and Senses (you may need reservations for these) Stick with the basics. ‘Fancier’ fare wasn’t great. But people, as far as I know, don’t go to Cuba for the food. There was a concerted effort to offer variety and a high standard, but they have a ways to go in this area, as a 5 star resort. One can also make reservations for the restaurants at ‘Memories’. We ate at the Mediterranean and Italian restaurants at the other property, and the food was okay.

I realize I have a lot of opinions to offer here, and it’s all subjective…I also know that the resort business is highly competitive, and food is a big deal for some travelers. It would be fantastic if the chefs at the Royalton were given the opportunity to travel and train with 5 star chefs, so that they could experience what the dishes should taste like, and how they can be prepared. Maybe this is in the works – it would be wonderful for them to have that chance, because they put a lot of effort and passion into everything they do, and would flourish with that opportunity. In my opinion, there also needs to be more fresh fruit and vegetables offered.

The drinks were good, although mixed drinks and speciality drinks tend to come a bit differently, depending on who is making them. Premium alcohol is available on request, and there is a very good selection of beer, whisky and spirits offered. The wine is absolutely passable, especially with dinner. DO try the various fruit juices - outstanding!

Recommendations:

Breakfast: The omelette; hot cakes; the coffee is WONDERFUL;
Lunch: The Royalton Burger; Calamari; Shrimp; Lobster salad
Supper: the menus are changing, but stick to beef or fish dishes, though the seafood risotto was absolutely awful (better at the Italian restaurant at Memories though)

Note: People with gluten intolerances and/or other special food needs may have some challenges in Cuba. This is not due to ignorance, but there are not the resources available (as far as I’ve observed) to provide adequate variety and accommodate specific dietary concerns in the way that you might desire/need.

Culture

To be honest, I would have enjoyed more Cuban culture at the resort. For example, Cuba has an ‘embarrassment of riches’ when it comes to the arts – why not have original, Cuban art in the rooms and around the resort? Offer these for purchase! I would have way rather experienced that kind of beauty in the décor than the Spartan, generic décor that was there. Also, I don’t need to hear ‘My Way’ or ‘My Heart Will Go On’ every night in different variations…And I like Diana Krall, and certainly appreciated having mellow music at the pool and no bawdy beach music (PLEASE keep it that way at the Royalton!!!) but more Cuban/latin music please! I also feel that traditional Cuban food should be on the 24 hour menu…Why not? There are many more aspects of a vibrant, talented and intelligent Cuban culture that could be explored at the Royalton, and not just during specific entertainment hours. I will say that the opportunity during dinner at Eggsellence on January 9th to hear Rissel (Violin) and her guitar play (whose name I have forgotten) was one I will not readily forget. They have more talent that most recording artists being promoted today, and played with such agility and passion that I was moved to tears on a couple of occasions.

Shopping/Souvenirs

There is something to be said for supporting local artists, and there is the opportunity to do this at La Puebla, the commercial area adjacent to the resort. Different vendors are there daily, and some offer outstanding carvings and paintings, amidst more generic fare. I was blown away, again, by the artistic abilities of the Cuban people. The shops offer some goods as well – necessities and amusements, souvenirs, alcohol, cigars etc…BUT, alcohol and cigars were cheapest at Duty Free at the Airport (we left at 4AM and it was open, but you can only pay cash) The cigars at the airport are not kept in humidors, but for the non-discriminate deal-seeker, there were some priced at over 50% less than what I paid for the same brand at Habana de Cuba in La Puebla, and the liquor prices were better as well. Save some CUCs for the airport if you are looking for the best prices. There are also a few souvenir stands at the airport, with a decent variety of knickknacks.

Summary

It’s probable that I have missed something imiportant, but, as mentioned, feel free to message me. We had a very good experience at the Royalton, and would love to return. We will also recommend this hotel to friends and family who would like to go to Cuba, unless they are picky eaters or desire more of a cultural experience. We have experienced better 5 star properties and restaurants elsewhere, but the staff members at this resort are second to none – the very, very best I’ve met and had the privilege of being served by. If the Royalton can continue to support, encourage and retain their staff, providing them opportunities for training and enhancement (language training and cuisine for example) and if they can stay on top of the upkeep of their property, they are likely to have many years of success. We would happily return, especially for the quiet, peaceful, non-chaotic atmosphere offered in this uniquely small and beautiful place. I hope that the tranquility that’s offered here will be protected and encouraged, because it really does provide a much needed alternative to the busier, louder resorts. While those may be perfect for families, teenagers and people who just want to party in ‘the Tropics’, I will be recommending the Royalton for those truly seeking an 'escape' and a chance to have some peace in an adults-only, romantic and quiet space.

Note to: Sunwing

Please consider making the VIP experience at the airport available to all Royalton guests. I get the sense you are trying to appeal to a 5 star clientele, but your branding/imaging can, at times, seem sort of low-end and cheap. Also, I was appalled at the condition of the seat-pockets on the plane…awful. We also sprang for the $40 pre-selected seats in row 4, only to not have visual access to the inflight entertainment...What?? Finally, please provide blankets for passengers on night flights. The plane was uncomfortably cold, especially for people acclimatizing after days in the sun. If this is not economical, perhaps these could be offered at a small cost to the passengers. Our flight was delayed, and we were exhausted and heading home to a blizzard...perhaps the 5 star experience could be extended to offer some small comforts to those trying to hang on to the relaxation afforded them at their resort. Being cold, bored and uncomfortable is not the best way to end an otherwise fabulous experience.

Room Tip: You won't have a bad room at the Royalton as far as quiet, location and layout. But if you have...
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
47 Thank OceanEyes73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 24 January 2013
Dear guests:

We have to say that this has to be the most exhaustive review we have received so far! What detail! It’s amazing! Such wonderful comments by a Contributor makes us feel quite special! Please rest assured that we take good care of our workers as we know how important they are to the Royalton experience. As we mentioned before, Royalton would not be what it is today without the wonderful clients who have left their mark so far, but also because of the beautiful souls who take part every day in making your vacation a dream come true! We pass on your comments to all of our workers! We are surprised at your comments of not seeing the management though, as they always make a point of collecting our clients opinions. After all, we are still in opening phase and there is no better way to deal with the important aspects as to ask our wonderful clients how they are spending their vacation.

We would like to thank you for mentioning that Royalton is not a party place, in fact, it quite the opposite. Royalton Cayo Santa Maria is a little oasis of tranquility for those who wish to get away from their busy lives and really reconnect with themselves. We like to think of ourselves as Zen. But hold on, that doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun! We have low impact activities throughout the day with our animation team and live bands every night at the lobby. For those who want action though, it is right next door at the Memories Azul and Paraiso hotels, that are included in the package. We have a little something for everybody here at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, just choose what kind of vacation you are looking for in order to book properly.

As for the hits and miss, we go along every day smoothing them out a little bit more, as we are still in opening mode. Details are so important in order to make this an unforgettable experience and we are still working on them, finding out the best way for every department to work more efficiently for our guests, although a lot has already been done We are very open-minded here at Royalton and the best is what we are looking for to give our clients the best all-inclusive experience possible!! Also for your information, we now have an official Cuban day! Activities and music during the day, Cuban night at the restaurant and a Cuban band in the evening!

Everything is possible at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2013

My wife and I went on a short getaway to Royalton a week before Christmas. Gotta say it's probably the best we've been to in Cuba.

Venue: Definitely very nice. Friendly staff, very clean, and you definitely get the feeling of 18+
Food: Relative to other Cuban resorts, food is definitely much better than others.
Beach: A great beach, pretty secluded, and the drink service is great.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
22 Thank whydub
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Marco-Mazzucchelli, General Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 14 January 2013
Dear guests:


Thank you so very much for taking the time to give us your impressions about our new little gem. Every opinion and comment is important to us, even if you were with us for a short while, we strive to make your vacation the best it can ever be. We certainly hope that you will join us back again for a longer time so we can pamper you even more!

Your comments resume very well what our hotel is like and you are right, the resort actually looks like the picture. We do not want to false advertise and most of the pictures taken were actually taken by us, on site, so you cannot go wrong. No fixing anywhere, all natural. What you see is what you get and it is darn pretty!!

Thank you for your generous comments dear guests!

We sincerely hope to welcome you back to picture perfect Royalton Cayo Santa Maria!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Royalton Cayo Santa Maria

Property: Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Address: 05200, Cuba
Region: Caribbean > Cuba > Villa Clara Province > Cayo Santa Maria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 15 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Royalton Cayo Santa Maria 4*
Number of rooms: 122
Reservation Options:
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