The resort itself was very clean and beautiful. The staff friendly and helpful. The entertaiment in the dicso was ok. A little lame at times, but I did enjoy watching the dancers they are very good. I didn't like that they took people from the crowd and made a fool out of them by making them do stupid things. I would have prefered to see the locals shake their booty more. There are 3 shops on the resort where you can buy souviners, batteries, suntan lotion, hats, flip flops, sarongs, local art and crafts. We went horseback riding for 10 pesos, it lasted about an hour. The only problem with the ride was he took us along such a garbage ridden path. I asked why all the trash and he told me that the locals go there to spend the night and party instead of going back to the mainland, and the cops won't find them there. We didn't spend anytime riding along the beach, which I thought we would do more of. The food was so-so. At the buffet you can pick and choose, but it's mostly the same boring stuf day after day. There are three Ala carte restaurants you can go to. Fontenella, El Dorado, El Caribeno. The food here was again ok. The service was quick and polite. In Fontenella there is a paino bar where you can smoke cigars and watch a man play. The barman will come to your table and take your drink order. Our room was two double beds with plenty of room. The mini bar was never stocked and our phone never worked. Even though we told reception the first day, no one came to fix it.
I liked the old style buildings. The pool was warm, but the bottom needed painting.
This is our room. We had oceanfront, but could only hear it as there were many trees in the way. Our phone didn't work so we couldn't order room service in our hangover states. When we arrived the mini-bar was stocked with one large bottle of water, Crytal Beer, local cola, and local lemon lime soda. There was also a coffeemaker with packs of decafe and regular coffee. In the bathroom we were provided two towels, one hand towel, shower gel, shampoo and soap, a shower cap and a sewing kit. This things were never replaced, but Im sure if we asked they would have restocked them.
The hotel room was spotless and the maid surprised us everyday with ducks (swans) made out of the towels and placed on the bed or the bed was made differently everyday. I could hardly wait each day to see what the maid had done to make our room more beautiful. The room was large with a nice bathroom which included a bidet. The Junior Suites also have an adjoining room with a sofa bed, chair and table with doors that close for privacy. There is also a hairdryer but bring your own conditioner as they only provide shampoo and lotion. There is a free in-room safe and a fridge. They provide bottled water each day.
There are two large pools, one that has daily activities such as pool volleyball and the other pool is known as the "quiet pool". There is an adult pool and a children's pool as well. The resort is large so we just went to the pool that was closest to our room which was the "quiet pool". The pool bartender was the best! I don't drink alcohol but he made the best non-alcoholic Pina Coladas. :-)
Service at all the restaurants that we went to was excellent. Tipping is not required as it was an All Inclusive vacation but a $1.00 Amercian tip was gratefully accepted and considered to be adequate. If we left a $1.00 tip in Canada I'm afraid it would be thrown back at you. The food was good but I am not a gourmet eater so I am easily pleased. Bring your own pepper as their pepper is tasteless. Also bring lots of gifts for the maid, bartender or anyone that provides you with service. They love gum, candy, cosmetics, T-Shirts, hats, etc. anything that they are unable to purchase in Cuba. You will benefit from giving these gifts as much as the people receiving them. Just watch the smile on their faces - it is reward enough. The beach is beautiful and we walked the length of the island to explore every spot.
We did not take any of the tours that were offered for an extra charge but other guests that we spoke to recommended the boating and snorkeling trip.
Each night there are colourful costumed shows put on by the staff and there is a disco. There are also tennis courts and a gym.
If you like smaller resorts , this is it.
Right on the beach....(gorgeous beach mind you).... stand up to the Iberostar name.... much better that the trip as far as food and value for example, altough much smaller....
El senador is one of the best resorts in cayo coco, if you like the all-included package so this is the place, the food and service are very good, also if you get bored of your stay you can go visit other places for one day, many excursions are availables every day. :)
beautiful beach, good service
What to say about this place...Well you must keep in mind this is not Canada, learn to relax and have fun with the cubans....
We 3 girls ( All aged 36) flew from Montreal on Sept 25th with Air Transat, for a week vacation, Check in went great we were the last group to arrive at the counter, made friends with the staff quickly! But there was no welcoming party but we made our own, so they got a kick out of that! Got to the room 1501 great section of the setting on the grounds, close to the beach, close to the Grill "Yarey" and to the main buffet area. The room was clean and spacious for 3 girls with lots of stuff....Our mini fridge (as they call it) was filled every day with beer, soda pop and water...we did not request another bed since we had 2 double beds but the offered after our first night so we didn't say no! The maid did a great job had alot of toillet paper..loll She was showered with all kinds of stuff every day and she left us a note saying the she really appreciated what we had left for her every day on the pillows. And we had hot water every day. Little bit of ants but that was our fault....not the hotels
The lay out of the hotel is very clean and not busy at all since it their dead season. So we felt sometimes we were alone on the grounds. The beach is very clean..they have a ground crew that cleans it every morning...There was no need to reserve your beach chairs since we were not alot of people there. The staff: Well were to start, the front desk people are very friendly and fun to talk to...the Animation dept (Alex, Josue, Yaima, Gladys, etc)...are the greatest they will go out of there way to teach you dance lessons, to speak spanish, If you start talking to them you will want to adopt them, they are trying to learn french and speak very well in english...They are not paid to do this since they are on a stage sent from the University to do this. But they do put on a very good show and get every body going....
Armando the Barman that starts at 11 pm in the "La Placita" is quite shy but once you get to speaking with him very funny guy he enjoys shooters (exspecially Vodka & Juice)
Archie the other Barman right beside the beach at the "El Ranchon" He is a very funny guy he loves to dance to anything so bring your cd's and he will play them, he is there from 10 Am till 5 Pm ( I left him 7 cd's and played them all week for us)
Jésus The other Barman in the Disco "Salsa Café" We called him our god he loves a good laugh and he can drink! Another great part of the staff... Augustos: The waiter in the "Fontanella" & "El Dorado" Restaurant was a big guy with a big sense of humour, loves the canadian culture and was always willing to make us feel comfortable in any restaurant we went to with special treatment.
The food was very good but very different from ours, but what to expect this is Cuba and not Canada...just bring some pepto bismal and you will be fine...as we were told some of the fruits and vegtables are not always in seaon just like us, so they may be a litlle light colour...But still very tasty...
This propertu offers standard rooms and Junior Suites as well (over the water). It is mostly accupied by Canadians but there are also people from otyer parts.... if you speak English or French , you'll be fine here....
Good is excellent. Beach is beautiful. I would say one of the top 5 all -inclusive family resorts in Cuba right now.
The bell boy was ready near the reception to take our luggage to our room which was a distance from the reception. He put our luggage in an electric vehicle and we sat next to him. Within 7 minutes we were in our room. He carried our 2 bags for us to our room and that was the most tiring part. This is where I gave my first tip. He explained stuff related to our room to us and left us as there were other patrons to be tended to in the reception lobby. The room was beautiful with colonial styled bed and an up to date washroom. The bed consists of 2 double beds pushed together. The bed was neither too soft nor too firm. Perfect for a good night’s sleep. Also present was a bottle of rum with a generic letter from the general manager addressed to us with timings of all buffet and grills that were open. The bar fridge was filled with a can of beer & a cola plus a bottle of water. Many people say the bathrooms need work with them in their reviews but all I can say that ours was in great shape but what I saw was beyond my expectation. There was a shower, bath, toilet and biday, all very clean. Also there was a hair dryer and a phone in the washroom. Shower pressure was also good not weak as I had read in the reviews. The only tip I can give you here is that make sure you check the shower head is secured. It seems that the cleaning maid did a good job in cleaning the washroom but did not properly secure the shower head and while I was checking the hot/cold taps to set the temperature the shower head came hurling down to my head. That hurt so secure the shower head before you turn the water on. The soap, moisturizing cream, shampoo and conditioner left in the washroom is not of the greatest quality so bring your own. While taking a shower make sure the curtain edges are put inside the tub and press them. This will prevent water from flowing outside.
As the buffet would have closed in the next 35 mts we made our way to the buffet. Even at that time the staff were ready to make a pasta sauce according to my taste but all we wanted was to eat some light food. Had some red guava, pineapple and some rice and we were done. We stopped by at the Salsa Cafe to see some entertainment and spent about 10 mts there before we decided to explore. We headed straight to the beach but it was too dark to see anything. With lightening in the distance and nothing much to do we decided to have an early night.
The salt area pool was neatly kept and was cleaned for any crabs that might have fallen in the pool every morning. Life guards were everywhere. Showers are there to clean yourself and plenty of lounge chairs and umbrellas to protect you. Everyone is ready to assist you and talk to you. Kid’s pool is in a separate area close to the buffet and the salt water pool has an area which is meant for kids and is quite shallow. The fresh water pool was still under renovation.
Could see staff cleaning the beach from our balcony but the weeds would keep coming in. There was too much garbage left behind by tourists who litter the beach and the staff try to keep up with cleaning it. They were always patching the huts with fresh palm leaves and would appreciate it if you can get them a drink from the beach bar. There are people who sell coconut water with rum for 3 CUC on the beach. On a busy day like weekends make sure you reserve the chairs in the morning otherwise you will have the chair but not under a shade.
Gardeners make sure the place is well maintained with beautiful plants everywhere. There is a pond which houses 2 ducks, a few turtles and lots of koi and goldfishes. Every evening insecticide is sprayed to keep the grounds free of mosquitoes.
Blau has some wonderful staff that touches your heart. One of the best bar man I have ever met is Liber who works in the main lobby. Kathy who works with him is a jewel of a person and Saily who is a student makes the best ‘mojito’ you can drink. Then there is Edulida and Yunia at the buffet. Edulida always kept the table clean and was always there if we needed something. Yunia knew that we didn’t eat pork and made sure that no pork came close to our omelette. Then there is Ricardo who always helped no matter where he was as a server. One of the gardeners’ Yemini would always help you get the coconuts from the tree and cut it for you. A lot of people never tipped him but he would still never say no to anyone. Also Dayami, Tito and Michel in Public relations were always there to assist you or to give you company. Jackie at the main reception is always helpful. Kelly and her entertainment team were great. Just as all fingers are not same there are some staff that would be obnoxious and rude. Just look beyond them. A lot of staff especially life guards and gardeners would hit on girls and woman. My spouse was hit on so many times that she laughed it out. They all wanted to marry any girls they could lay their eyes on! lol. Ariel the Sunwing rep is a wonderful man and will help you with tips on where you can save money and what can be done. The maid kept the room nice and clean.
Food is not the best but every attempt is made at the buffet to please your taste. A-la-carts are not all the same. We hated the food at the sea food place but loved the Caribbean and Italian place. It’s just a hit and miss at the restaurants. Sometimes there was no fish or sometimes no beef. As it was off season all the dinners were at the Italian restaurant. We took all our Popeye, KFC and Taco Bell sauces with us. We are fussy eaters but hey this is CUBA, who goes there for food. Just take your condiments. Staff there love our BBQ sauces and Heinz ketchup. Leave that behind and they will love it. I left behind all the hot sauces and had to ration them out as everyone wanted them. The grill at the pool side makes wonderful veggie pizza and cheeseburgers. The only problem is getting the server to take your order and get the food takes eternity. The 24 hour grill makes the best toasted cheeseburgers.
Never did they run out of anything. Liber would surprise us with his special fruit drinks. They even have a coffee machine in the bar in case you want to drink their amazing Spanish Coffee.
There is entertainment every night for kids and adults. One show was related to the Titanic and the guy dressed like Celine Dion. I laughed my head off. They will also involve patrons to participate in a friendly competition to crown Ms Blau Colonial for a week and it also ends with a group dance. A trip to the bat cave is also organized. While we were there, there was a fashion show at the pool and also at the Salsa Cafe. You also get to take the peddle boat out for an hour or can take a catamaran trip for half an hour or take the canoes out. Also there is salsa dancing, tennis, volley ball etc.
Took a hop on hop off bus to Pilar beach. Reminded me of all the wonderful beaches in Australia. Review will be put up for Pilar beach soon. Another excursion we did was to Ceigo De Avila. Cost us about 75 CUC per person. Drove through a 17 km causeway where you can see a lot of pink flamingos and through the streets of ***, with a tricycle ride in the Ciego De Avila plus lunch and a stopover to a local cigar making factory, Cuban music and a workshop that makes jewelery and artifacts from silver. The lunch time wasted a lot of our time which could have better been utilized by taking our orders first and having them ready when we arrived there. We sat there for an hour and a half to have food served with pork. We did some souvenir shopping and money exchange at a bank which is housed in the Royal Bank of Canada building. Exchange out there was 98.5 CUC to C$100. Didn’t have enough time to explore the beautiful city. On the way back they stop for a steam train ride through a sugar cane field and another speed boat ride. Both well worth the money you have paid for the trip. Another trip we did was the glass bottom boat. Were lucky to go on this trip as one day the boat was broken while for 3 days the water was very rough. Other patrons who were putting this off to the last 3 days did not get a chance to take this wonderful trip. A tip - take your own snorkeling gear and some banana or bread to see and feed the fishes. Snorkeling gear is provided but leaks and is unhygienic. My Dollar store gear was of better quality then provided by the boat. Fishes come to you if you have food around you. Is worth the trip. $20 for adults and $10 for kids. If you pay at the beach kids can be squeezed in for free. Washroom is not meant for females. If you need to sit just avoid it. Too cramped up and dirty.
Horseback riding was so much fun. For 10 CUC they take you for a 1 hour ride. Pick up is outside the resort. Make sure that you put a lot of insect repellents on yourself. We were bitten so many times while riding close to the lagoon. Wearing full pants is recommended.
Cayo Coco airport.
We found Cuban honey to be 10 cents cheaper at the airport as compared to the resort. Souvenirs were more expensive at the airport. At the resort they say they take credit cards but then the line will be down when you go to pay them. The stands close to the buffet at the resort take US$, C$ or CUC if you buy from them. Ricardo one of the sales guy is a very honest person. Tip - do some bargaining as they will always drop a dollar or 2. Alcoholic drink is about 1 CUC cheaper or 3 CUC expensive then the resorts. It’s just a hit and miss with the drinks. If you have not paid more or are not in the elite class Sunwings make you go in last. Same goes with the food offered in the plane.
.After reading past reviews, I knew some of the negative comments could be completely unrealistic due to different expectations of the resort and what someone wants from there holidays. However, the resort and our stay at the Blau Colonial was simply fantastic! Better than expected and definitely value for money.
Flew from Toronto with Sunwings. One of the worst organized flight we have been to. Couples were sitting separately and even kids were separate from at least one parent and people were moved around even after being given seats and boarding passes. Transfers were very well organized. Please note do apply insect repellents before you exit the plane as you will be swarmed. I quickly exchanged C$50 at the airport as I wanted to see what the exchange was. There are 2 places where you can do the exchange. First is just in between the departure door and the arrival doors while the second place is inside the departure area. I got 45.50 CUC. Just took 15 minutes to get to the resort. . As we were the first people in the bus our luggage came out last. Some resort staff were there to greet the regulars and it was nice to see this kind of welcome. While I was getting the bags out, my spouse went to the reception. I had requested an ocean view room on the third floor 2 weeks before we departed and our request was honored. By the time I got there she already had the electronic keys to the room and the a-la-carte booking slips. I again exchanged another C$50 to see the difference between the airport and the resort and I got 45 CUC here. They have a CADECA behind the reception area which I presume is open till 9 pm.
Will definitely go there when I get a chance again. Remember for patrons going back there is a courtesy lunch visit to a farm in a toy train.Looking forward to going on this courtesy tour next time I visit Blau. Tip- go there with an open mind and do not let the negative reviews upset you. If you want to enjoy don’t compare and you will have a blast. If you have any questions do not hesitate to ask.
Fantastic hotel, great facilities, good food! Italian, seafood & Japanese a la carte restaurants plus international buffet. 4 Star Plus rating. Beachfront. CD player, hairdryer, free digital code safe in room. All in all a fantastic service, would definitely go back.
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