What can I say that hasn't already been said. Yes Don Lino is a very small resort with limited food and beverage choices, but still, I loved it. I went there with my daughter (27) for a week April 16 to 23, 2014 - we missed the cheapest rate (don't you hate it when you wait hoping it will drop just a bit more and bam the price goes up by $40) But for $560 including taxes I could barely afford to go camping at this price... think about it, a full service site usually runs about $42 a night at a provincial park then there is the food the beer the gas I'm sure you get the picture.
Being at Don Lino was almost like camping, you rough it... you expect to rough it and you make the most of it and you'll have a good time. If roughing it is not your idea of a great time then spend the extra money and go to a larger newer place.
One thing I learned was if the Cuban tourists are smart enough to wait out the approaching storm in their rooms it would be wise to do the same. But being the crazy Canadians we went to the beach bar to watch the storm over the ocean. It was AMAZING... but thatched roofs similar to the one at the bar are NOT weather proof - and THINGS live in those thatches... things like frogs! And during heavy rainfalls... well they fall out of the roof, in fairly large quantities - and they may jump on you... and if you scream, well everyone will laugh at you :)
Take a horse and buggy or walk to Playa Blanco - it's beautiful and very safe
Go into Santa Lucia, it's an eye opener
Eat at El Tulipan - worth the money!
Things I loved about Don Lino:
1. The small intimate size - we were in room 6 and only 45 steps to the pool and 95 steps from our door to the beach.
2. Meeting new friends (Shout out to my new friends!)
3. Taco - the cutest resort dog EVER!
4. Beach combing for shells and sea glass
5. Very friendly staff
6. Never EVER having to line up for ANYTHING! Ok we lined up at check-in but that was only for 15 mins and we were the last of 10 people checking in.
7. Very quiet beach.
Things about Don Lino I would change:
1. The Pillows, I'm still not sure if there WAS anything in my pillow case - they were pretty flat!
2. I wish the beach had at least one nice sandy area but the snorkeling made up for that.
3. The food at the buffet could be a little more meal appropriate, but if you stuck to the grill area it was ok.
4. A better stocked store - it was our little joke when I went to get some cigarettes - I wanted Green Hollywood the storekeeper said "No green, No red - just Blue!" Ok I'll take the blue... do have matches? "No"... do you have a lighter? "No... just cuban lighter" and he hands me his glasses to use the sun's rays... Smarty pants! So if we wanted something that wasn't available... we would just laugh and say... no green no red... just blue.
Go with an open mind and bring a few essentials and you'll be fine
Things to bring
bug spray for the sand flies
Your sense of adventure
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- Also Known As:
- Villa Islazul Don Lino Hotel Rafael Freyre
- Hotel Islazul Don Lino
- Islazul Don Lino Hotel
- Islazul Villa Don Lino Cuba/Holguin Province