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“Heaven on Earth”

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Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Ranked #1 of 15 Hotels in Cayo Santa Maria
Cobourg, Canada
Level Contributor
36 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Heaven on Earth”
Reviewed 25 June 2014

Thank you Royalton Crew for making our vacation so incredibly wonderful. It was especially nice when the management guys took the time to ask us our opinion!
I had emailed the resort from the Royalton website to make an advance request for a room with a great view -- and they delivered! It was really quite a treat; an ocean panorama. And what was perfect about it besides the A/C, the bed (once we got extra pillows), the flat screen (to watch the World Cup), the storage, the safe, the cleanliness.? Why, everything! It was huge, the bathroom too.
Marvelous beach (sand like baby powder), literally a hundred palapas, and they'll keep pouring the rum into your glass if you let them! Pools had small tiles missing but who cares? They still looked gorgeous!
Speaking of rum, the lobby bar has a rich assortment of top of the line liquors -- 11 year old rum, Glenlivet, Grahams port, on and on. We tried to drink it all but fell short.....
If the weather forecasts thunderstorms, take heart, they are short and spectacular.
If you love lobster, it's plentiful. And try the crepes...mmmm. If you were late to breakfast, like we were, some things were gone but it didn't matter; it meant we discovered new things! Here's a hint - don't expect maple syrup for your pancakes. Try to find a maple tree in Cuba..chocolate syrup is actually pretty tasty!
And parents -- leave your 18+ kids at home. It's going to be boring for them. This is a quiet place!
In fact, it's one of those places that you want to go back to and that says it all.

Room Tip: Room 0610 was excellent
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank spinnerdolphin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 26 June 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you very much for trust in our company Royalton luxury resorts and for choosing our resort in Cuba, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

Thank you for said that this is "Heaven on Earth" wow!!

We will share your beautiful comments with our staff and we hope to see you very soon in your cuban home, Royalton cayo Santa Maria,

Kind regards,

Miguel Del Fraile
Director I Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
St. Catharines, Canada
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2014

We have just returned from a week's holiday at the Royalton Cayo Santa Maria…WOW! After long and very cold winter we wanted a break that gave us luxury plus peace and quiet and we found both at the excellent Royalton resort. This resort thoroughly deserves the genuine, world-class 5 star rating.
From the moment you arrive you are treated like a VIP. We knew we were in paradise second after we reached Royalton. Resort is beautifully situated with spectacular panoramic views right from main lobby. The service was exceptional and amazing, right from the welcome glass of champagne drink on arrival till last moment when all of them waved us goodbye.
Check in was quick and efficient as well check-out. And something you don't see in resorts very often: 3 hrs. late check-out was free of charge
The main attribute of the hotel, in my opinion, is the hotel management and staff. I don’t want to mention individual’s names here because they were all as good as each other.
Everyone from management, waitress, butlers, housekeeping, the bar, restaurants, the staff at the reception desk and all the other people working there to keep this place as paradise, all of them just going above and beyond to make sure you have an incredible stay.
The whole staff were an absolute treat, very welcoming, really exceptional and willing to help at all times. They are polite, respectful, and courteous. They all have smiles on their faces and are willing to assist you with anything you require. You’ll never have to worry about waiting too long for a drink, food or anything else. Exceptional service was the norm.
Management team is wonderful, very kind and efficient with good attention to details and always had a nice word towards guests. Always visible around at breakfast, lunch and dinner to make sure everyone had everything they needed.
Entire resort was immaculate and constantly cleaned and perfectly maintained and all in a very friendly manner. The resort grounds were really beautiful and smell from the various flowers and bushes were heavenly!
Royalton has a beautiful, very clean beach, with fine gold sand and gorgeous blue and turquoise ocean water where you could see your toes. The beach was not crowded and had plenty of sun beds on the beach and around the pool –so no need to get up early and race.
The pool areas were lovely clean, with not only lounger beds but also a lot of charming canopy beds to get for shade.
We don’t have any tips for room. All the rooms are lovely so depends what you really want. You can't go wrong.
Some are close to the front lobby, other closer to pool or beach. We prefer to stay close to beach since we really spent very little time in the room or near the pools. That is what we got (room # 0408), and we really enjoyed the room. Lowest floor has patio and upper floor balcony. If you aren't pool side the grounds are landscaped well and views are pleasant. Whatever you choose I think you will be beyond happy with your decision.
Our room was very spacious, comfortable, and beautifully appointed with a super comfortable bed. Extremely clean with plenty of sitting space and a luxurious, enormous bathroom. Loved the bathroom with bathtub and separated rain shower with plenty of hot water.
The food was simply amazing. All three meals were a la carte but breakfast also with buffet option. All serving were beyond imagination - all beautifully presented and delicious. I like Royalton dinners were served with elegance, charm formal service. Dinner atmosphere was with candles, live classical music and the elegant stainless steel covers off each plate.
Food was always really fresh (no buffet style where foods often sit out for long periods of time) and varied, from fish to meat to fruit. Resort offers 24 hour room service and Sunset snack bar 24/7 with a diverse selection of meals and snacks.

Of course you don't go to Cuba for the food and beach only but also to see and learn Cuban culture, history and geography. Cuba is amazing and you could easily fall in love with this gorgeous country. This time we and our new friend Sylvia from Montreal decided to see Trinidad and Sancti Spiritus . Trinidad 500 years old city, was officially declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988 and it is one of the best-preserved colonial cities in the entire Caribbean. Day trip took us taxi driving three hours each direction but was worth any pesos. What a picturesque place! Old and narrow cobbled streets perfectly preserved beautiful old colonial mansions, churches, museums that all make you feel like going back into colonial times. Lots of places to stop for good coffee and lunch. We would highly recommend trip to Trinidad that provides you with a totally fascinating and unforgettable experience.

In summary Royalton and its hospitality is just fantastic and first class – that’s why I mention it over and over in this review!
Sounds too good to be true I know! OK as always improvements can be made so maybe couple more signs close to 24/7 Snack Bar with direction to the beach.
We don't normally ever go back to the same place twice but we would love to return to this jewel resort.

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple.

Room Tip: All the rooms are lovely so depends what you really want. You can't go wrong.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Krystyna G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 26 June 2014
Dear Krystyna G,

Thank you very much for trust in our company Royalton luxury resorts and for choosing our resort in Cuba, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

What a beautiful review of our hotel and what a bice experience you had with us. We are very happy reading that our hotel is above and beyond all expectations!

We will share your beautiful comments with our staff and we hope to see you very soon in your cuban home, Royalton cayo Santa Maria,

Kind regards,

Miguel Del Fraile
Director I Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2014

My wife and I had only seen reviews or a few friends comments. The location is beautiful and the beach is great. As normal all alcohol is watered down. The help is very good and polite. The butler is not really needed or that helpful.
Since my last trip to Cuba, the food presentation is great, but unfortunately still not of a high quality.
If you are asked how you like your beef cooked, your answer will not change the result. Over cooked and too tough to chew. My favorite part of the service was the effort made at the beach.
It is a long drive in!
Would I go back? Not until the Executive Chef is actually working there.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
7 Thank Michael B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 23 June 2014
Dear Michael B,

We thank you for sharing your experience with other travellers on the internet and we are sorry if you didnt enjoy 100% your stay.

Concerning the alcohol, we are offering premium drinks in all the bars of the hotel, and you can find a big variety at the lobby bar open 24 hours. Our bartenders are offering the drinks how you like or you prefer and because of the temperature if you dont drink it quickly of course it can be watered down. However we will check this with our food and beverage manager in order to settle everything.

We would like to see you here again in order to show you the real 5 star of Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

Sincerely,

Miguel Del Fraile
Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
quebec
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2014

Stayed at the Royalton June 9-16 and we truly enjoyed every minute of our week. I have visited Cuba 12 times and I can honestly say this is the best resort! When we booked several weeks ago there were no rooms available with a balcony. I was alittle disappointed because the reason for this trip was to celebrate my husbands 50th birthday (June 4th). I e-mailed the resort and asked if it would be possible to have a room on the second floor and it didn't even have to be ocean view. When we arrived at the resort and were given our room numbers we were told we had a cabana. It was great with a huge walkin closet and bathroom. We had so much space it was like a little apartment. From that moment on I knew this was going to be the perfect vacation!! I cannot say enough good things about Lester our butler, he just wanted to help us anyway he could, we would meet him during the day and he would ask" what can I do for you today?" He reserved all our suppers and made sure we had bathrobes in our room besides that we really didn't need anything. He was so sweet I just wanted to bring him home!!!
The food was excellent. There are no buffets just a la cartes which I was unsure of before leaving but it was wonderful. The quality and presentation of the food was out of this world...I have never eaten this well in Cuba. One night when we got our dessert our names were written in cocoa on the plate, a very nice touch. My husband is a big eater and there was never a problem getting a second plate if needed. From what I could see both restaurants had 2 different menus so if you went to the same restaurant 2 nights in a row you weren't eating the same thing. The service was 5* for sure. I found the service not quite as good at noon at the snack bar. Everyone seemed to be confused and we seemed to have 3 different people waiting on us all the time (confusing when it is time to tip) but it was no big deal. Some of the reviews said it was hard to get served but we never had that problem. Make sure you try the lobster and the seafood brochettes at noon cooked on the bbq "to die for". The choice of drinks was very nice also we are not big drinkers but the drinks I had were excellent. We were able to bring bottles of wine back to our room which was much appreciated. I will say I am missing the coffee...their coffee was the best and there were so many different kinds.
The beach is the nicest beach I have seen yet! We walked for miles, when the tide is low and there is no wind there were places in the ocean where the water was only about 2 inches deep I have never seen anything so beautiful. You can go along way in the water before it gets too deep and it is so clear. There was never a problem getting palapas in the morning which was nice, even at the pool there was always somewhere to sit. The sunbeds at the pool went fast but we didn't have the problem of people reserving them and not using them.
The staff were all extremely friendly and the general manager is very present. He walks around all day and everyday making sure things are going smoothly and that there are no problems.
The only negative which is by no means the fault of the resort was the MOSQUITOS! I have never seen so many. I found it disappointing not being able to eat dinner outside or to have a drink in the bar after about 7 pm. Some people weren't bothered but most of us were. Thank god for the air conditioned bar and the closed in restaurants. They did fog on several occasions but it really didn't seem to help.
Forget the Wi-Fi. The connection is so slow and if it is overcast you will never get connected. I did use the computer one morning in the lobby very early but got eaten alive by the mosquitos. You are on vacation you don't need internet!!! (according to my husband)
2 weeks before leaving I was checking out the weather and was disappointed to see rain was announced everyday...don't worry about it we had the most fabulous week it only rained alittle in the evening a few nights and 1 day the sky was overcast but it never rained, it was perfect weather!!!
I would return to this resort given the chance and I would recommend it to anyone looking to spend a nice quiet relaxing week.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank fourthdale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 23 June 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you very much for trust in our company Royalton luxury resorts and for choosing our resort in Cuba, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

We are very happy reading that you had a "Perfect vacation" and you truly enjoyed every minute of your week. Thank you!

We will share your beautiful comments with our staff and we hope to see you very soon in your cuban home, Royalton cayo Santa Maria,

Kind regards,

Miguel Del Fraile
Director I Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 June 2014

We just returned from the Royalton as we left for June 13th-20th. All I can say is WOW! From the moment you walk in to the moment you leave, you are treated like king and queens. The staff always goes out of their way to make your stay the best. Big Thank you to Ronaldo who made our experience that much better with his great service.

As for the hotel it self. The rooms are very luxurious and are very comfortable. The 2 pools are great and there's always room to sit. Bars and restaurants are very nice and the grounds were gorgeous. This was definitely the nicest resort that we have been in Cuba.

The beaches are beautiful. Perfect white powder sand with clear warm waters. There is always spots to sit in the shade on the beach and it's never crowded. At one point in the day at around 1 pm, I think I counted like 5 people in the ocean. You get your drinks and food served to you on the beach so you never have to get up. Very relaxing.

This resort was great and we are planning on returning in April. Thank you to everyone at the resort and we'll see you in 10 months.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jonny-Krissy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 23 June 2014
Dear Jonny and Krissy,

Thank you very much for trust in our company Royalton luxury resorts and for choosing our resort in Cuba, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

We will share your beautiful comments with our staff and we hope to see you very soon in your cuban home, Royalton cayo Santa Maria,

Kind regards,

Miguel Del Fraile
Director I Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 June 2014

What a disappointing experience! I can not understand so high rating, it' far from 5 stars.
First 2 days and first 3 meals was disaster.
Lunch bar by the pool is usually overcrowded, we waited few minutes for a attendant than found table and menu cards ourselves. Half awake waiter served us water and beer only after repeat requests, couldn't' answer simple menu questions and after long wait served dishes ordered by other guests.
Evening dinner served by waitress who does not understand why one menu card is not enough for 2 people, serves warm sparkling wine (so called shampane) and splashes drinking water over table and my wife face acting like is normal.
Next day waiting line for breakfast and similar situation: careless waiters & lack of attention. I had to repeat my order 3 times since in the middle of them my waitress decided to speak or respond to fellow workers. You can have other waiters passing by with water or juice but don't count on it if they are not "assign" to your table.
Lobby bar is ridiculously stack with low end and poor selection of alcohol. If you like good rum you have to go to next hotel because in Royalton top one is 7 years old, if you like cigars it's only shopping village next to hotel and during the day. When I asked someone about it (later I've learn he was General Manager) while sitting on the Lobby couch and paying more attention to his phone explained that he can not obtain license to sell cigars (?)
Another problem is mosquitoes, not much is being done to control it, no sprays in the rooms, not even for purchase, worst is Lobby toilets: you have to be very brave to spend 5 minutes over there.
It is such a great resort with full of potential, set on beautiful beach and run by unprofessional people (except Mateusz who really cares) and service by under train stuff, it's a shame.

Anyway after 2 days we requested transfer to Melia Buenavista which is far superior to Royalton and where waiters doesn't look and act like animation team and service and product is truly royal.

Room Tip: Avoid noisy A/C room, my drove me crazy.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
13 Thank MikeOni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 29 June 2014
Dear Miroslaw,

First of all we want to apologize if you didnt enjoy your stay, however we can not understand how you recommend to other travellers to be away of us.

You have been in our hotel only a day, not giving us the opportunity to talk with you and not having the enough experience to review our property. We would like to have the opportunity to see you here again in order to welcome you personally and to show you how wonderful is our hotel.

Sincerely,

Miguel Del Fraile
Manager
Royalto Cayo Santa Maria
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottawa
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2014

My husband and I had not been to Cuba in 17 years. We had tried it once and did not enjoy the food, so we went to other locations for our vacations. We were looking for somewhere to go in early June and the Royalton kept popping up in my searches, the price was great, and the reviews on tripadvisor seemed to good to be true, but we took a chance and gave Cuba another try. We were not disappointed - the excellent reviews we had read were pretty much bang on!!

It was a relaxing, quiet and enjoyable vacation from the moment we arrived to the moment we sadly had to leave. The resort is intimate and well maintained with good pools and a beautiful pristine beach. The rooms are a perfect size and the food is very good with plenty of variety. There is always live music and the shows were a nice change from the large 'theatre style' events you see at larger resorts.

But the real stars of the show are the Staff. We have never had better service anywhere in the world. Always service with a smile everyday from the housekeepers to the excellent bartenders to the wait staff in the restaurants and the reception. Too many to mention by name except for our Butler - Yoldy who provided us with excellent discreet service - Thank you. I cannot end this review without also mentioning Mateusz Kos, the Room Division Manager - one of the hardest working people we have ever seen - always present, always making sure your vacation was perfect - it was a pleasure to meet you all! We will return to the Royalton in 2015. See you there!
Elise & Francois

Room Tip: We were in Bungalow 10 - close to the lower pool and Sunset Grill - but nothing is far from anything...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Elise D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miguel D, Manager at Royalton Cayo Santa Maria, responded to this review, 23 June 2014
Dear Elise & Francois,

We thank you for trust in our company Royalton luxury resorts by Blue Diamond hotel and resorts, and we thank you for choosing our hotel in Cuba, Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.

We are very happy reading that you enjoyed your stay with us and you will come back in 2015.

We will share your beautiful comments with our staff and we hope to see you very soon in your cuban home, Royalton cayo Santa Maria,

Kind regards,

Miguel Del Fraile
Director I Manager
Royalton Cayo Santa Maria
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 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
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