More about Sirenis la Salina Varadero Beach Resort
Beautiful resort with a few growing pains!!!
My husband, my 23-month-old son and I, just returned from our second visit to the Cuba and our first to Varadero! We stayed at the Sirenis La Salina for the week of November 11, 2007 to November 18, 2007. We booked with Sunwing Vacations and flew Sunwing into Varadero. We were suppose to leave Toronto at 6:30 a.m. but unfortunately had a 13-hour delay due to “technical issues” and ended up leaving Toronto at 7:15 p.m. It was a 3 hour plus flight so it was around 11:00 p.m. when we arrived in Varadero. This left a lot of people upset since we completely lost a day. The flight was uneventful. We didn’t have to wait a very long time in the customs lines and by the time we got our luggage and cleared customs it was close to 12:00 a.m. The ride to the Sirenis La Salina was about 45 minutes due to the fact that we had to drop off other people at different resorts along the way.
CHECK-IN: This was fairly quick. They had a special room set up for Sunwing passengers. They were waiting for us with a welcome drink and some light foods. We simply walked up to the tables waiting for us and gave them our hotel vouchers. We were given a bottle of rum, our room keys and a map of the resort. They had a bellhop escort us out to a waiting golf and to our room. [8 out of 10]
There was an orientation the following morning with our Sunwing Rep, Manuel. He explained a little about the hotel, the money exchange office, the different trips offered by Sunwing and just general information about Cuba. I liked him. He was funny and very honest. [8 out of 10]
ROOMS: We were in building 39 in room 39211, on the second floor. The room was beautiful. Of course it is also brand new. It consisted of two double beds, we had requested a king size bed but after settling in, we decided that we would simply push the two beds together. The room had a dresser with a television set (a few dozen satellite channels), a sitting area with two chairs, and a luggage table. The closet was large with a safe for your use (this was included with our Sunwing package but normally you need to pay to use it). There was also a mini fridge for your use in the dresser. There was water, a couple of sodas and a couple of beers in it. It was restocked daily. The bathroom had a toilet, sink, bathtub/shower and hair dryer. The bathtub was very narrow and up high. The room was very nice!! [9 out of 10]
FOOD/DRINKS: The food was okay. The resort has four a la carte restaurants, and you can reserve dinner at two of them because of capacity. We did the Japanese and Mediterranean. You needed a reservation for the a la carte restaurants and that could be done with the concierge in the lobby. The food was good in both the a la cartes. We enjoyed the buffet as well which served breakfast, lunch and dinner. There are 2 snack bars, which are available for continental breakfast, lunch and snacks at different times throughout the day. Overall, I would say that the food was okay. At times it was better than others but it is very important to remember that you are in Cuba and food is not what they are known for. [6.5 out of 10]
Drinks were very good. There’s no such thing as a watered down drink at the Sirenis la Salina. The pina coladas are excellent in the lobby bar. They serve Crystal beer on tap at the bars. They also served champagne in the lobby bar. There are several bars to pick from throughout the resorts. [10 out of 10]
BEACH / POOL: The beach was beautiful. There are not a lot of beach loungers and huts on the beach. You needed to get up early in order to get one. There are plenty of loungers with cushions in the pool areas so we never went without a place in the shade. The water was that beautiful shade of turquoise. There are several pools to choose from throughout the resort including a children’s pool. The water in the main pool was freezing cold. There was a swim up cave bar in the main pool. [7.5 out of 10]
ENTERTAINMENT: There is nightly entertainment available. The usual resort type of shows. They also had a band play a couple of nights and a water ballet show one night. We can’t really say much as we missed out on this most nights because of our son. But a few friends went everyday and enjoyed it very much. [9 out of 10]
EXCURSIONS: We didn’t do any excursions through Sunwing Vacations. We actually booked with Nolitours because the day we decided to book our excursion our rep had his day off. This was not a problem since the prices are the same with every company and even the hotel. We booked the Havana Colonial half-day tour. This was awesome. We drove to Havana, which took about 2 hours. Toured Old Havana, had lunch at Restaurant Dominica (this was good). Toured “modern” Havana, toured Christopher Columbus cemetery (absolutely gorgeous) and then went to Revolution Square and ended our tour at the Capitol building. I truly fell in love with Havana. Old Havana reminded me of Seville, Spain or even Paris, France. Absolutely gorgeous.
We also decided to explore Varadero on our own. We took a Coco Taxi into town ($10.00 Cuban convertible pesos), did some shopping, had lunch at Restaurant Antiguedades, which was featured on the Thirsty Traveler ($60.00 convertible pesos), took a horse-drawn carriage tour of Varadero ($10.00 convertible pesos per person) and finally took the double decker bus ($5.00 convertible pesos per day) to Plaza Americas (the mall!!!) and the double decker bus home. We had a great time in Varadero. The beach downtown is gorgeous.
STAFF: The staffs at the Sirenis la Salina were wonderful! They were friendly and helpful. We tipped our maid everyday ($2.00 per day) and left her gift for which she was extremely grateful. We felt that everyone’s intentions were good but at times they were overwhelmed. This is a new resort, officially opened only 3 weeks when we were there and there are still growing pains. A lot still needs to be learned. We also tipped the waiters at the different restaurants; not because we had to, but because we enjoyed the service they provided us and therefore wanted to thank them. [7 out of 10]
PHONE CALLS: Our phone in our room did not work for international calls. We called reception and they said that it was the operator’s responsibility to make it work. The operators told us it was reception’s responsibility. Needless to say, we needed to call from the phone center in the lobby. This was hit and miss. I could only reach one number back home. Many people were not so lucky. The phones systems in Cuba leave something to be desired.
AIRPORT DEPARTURE: Our flight home was at 11: 20 a.m. We had breakfast at the buffet since it was opened at 7:00 a.m. and pick up was not until 7:30 am. We left at 8:00 a.m. and were at the airport within 45 minutes. We found the Sunwing counter and got our seats within minutes. We paid our $25 departure tax (our son did not pay since he was less than 24 months) and went through passport control. Security was quick. There are some duty free shops once you’ve cleared security right at the gate. The flight home took about 3 and we arrived home at 2:00 p.m. local time, 40 minutes ahead of schedule. (8 out of 10)
OVERALL IMPRESSIONS: This was our fourth trip with our son and we enjoyed it very much. We traveled with some wonderful people from Toronto and they made the trip even more enjoyable. The resort was great. However, it is important to note that this is the largest resort in Cuba!!!! So size is an issue if mobility is an issue. Believe me, you will walk. Overall, I will say that the Sirenis la Salina was very good. Cuba is wonderful and the people are amazing!
Beautiful property but needs a bit of tweeking
We have travelled all over the Caribbean and have been to Cuba 6 times. This is a beautiful property with a few problem areas.
We purchased a package through our travel agent.
We flew SkyService direct from Calgary. The entertainment system (inflight movies and music) was broken both ways - it made for a long boring flight with 2 teenagers.
Clearing customs and getting our bags at the airport in Varadero was easy. The bus to the hotel was waiting our arrival outside the airport.
Hotel check in took under 20 minutes. However we had requested connecting rooms for the kids and there were none upon arrival. The bellman took us and our bags by golf cart to the rooms. We were close to the large pool and a la carte restaurants.
The rooms were on the top floor of the three story buildings - no elevators but very nice to not have the noise from above except we had construction work being done daily on the roof top of our building so we awoke to a jack hammer sound every morning.
The rooms were side by side.
We had requested 1 king in one room and 2 doubles in the other. They were both king rooms so the kids ended up sleeping together.
Everything is super clean - considering the resort only opened in July 2007. The rooms are very large with a beautiful washroom (tub along with telephone shower). The beds are really comfortable and the rooms are tastefully decorated. Each room has a fridge that is filled daily with one water 2 beer and 2 colas. Each room has a CD player and washroom scale however no alarm clock. I wish we had taken ours from home.
There is only one buffet for the entire resort. If you aren't at the buffet within the first half hour of opening there will be a shortage of food which isn't often replaced. The food at the buffet is neither great or awful. They have an omlette bar though they tend to make the omlettes runny. They have a lunch and dinner pasta bar which was quite good. It's often hard to get a table at the buffet.
We arrived on the Monday and booked the a la cartes first thing Tuesday. There was nothing available until Friday.
We did the Steakhouse - good. The Italian - very bad. And the Mediterrean - very odd.
Overall they were the worst a la cartes in Cuba.
The lobby bar and piano bar are very busy and it's hard to get service even when tipping the bartenders. Some of the workers had told us that they had only worked at the resort for a few days or a few weeks.
There is no disco on site.
The theatre hosts a different nightly show every night. The shows for the most part are awful. However do not miss the water ballet held on Wednesday nights at the large pool. It's just beautiful to see.
The large pool has the waterslide and the cave pool bar.
The kids loved the slide. The water was refreshingly cool and we needed it as the weather was 30 c every day.
The beach towels are large and soft. There was never a problem getting clean ones everyday. You need to give the front desk 15 Cuban Convertible Pesos per towel as a deposit that is refunded the last day provided you return the towel.
There are activities at the large pool everyday. The entertainment staff has very little if any English. They seem to cater more to the French as they get many tourists from Quebec.
The beach is beautiful. There are plenty of beach chairs for everyone no matter what time of day you go down to the beach.
The sand is beautiful and the beach itself is soft with no rocks and no seaweed.
The water was rough each day as it's that time of year so we weren't allowed to take the pedal boats or kayaks out but they do have them there at the resort.
The resort is very large. If you aren't a walker you can flag down the golf carts. They have about 10 of them that run all the time.
There is still construction going on at the resort. They are building a whole other section to it. It will be the largest hotel in Varadero once completed.
I was told that there is no noise and that the construction doesn't effect anything.
We could hear the construction noise at night and through the early morning. The construction workers work late into the night as the weather permits and they've put up flood lights everywhere.
We have stayed at the Barcelo Solymar, the Paradisius Varadero, and the Tryp Peninsula in past stays in Varadero but the Sirenis La Salina was a great price this time and we couldn't pass it up.
Overall the resort is beautiful but give it a year to get the kinks worked out.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions as I love to chat about Cuba and my travels.
Great property with lots of potential.
We recently returned from a two week stay at Sirenis la Salina (10/ 27 to 11/10). This was our first trip to Cuba and we went with certain expectations based on all the praise given to Cuba by other travellers. During our first week there were only 400 guests at the resort while there were 1200 during the second week. This resulted in a substantial decrease in service quality – perhaps they were overwhelmed.
ARRIVAL: We booked with Conquest Vacations and flew with Air Canada on an early flight so we were at the resort by noon and were in our room within half an hour of arrival. The flight, transfers and check-in went smoothly. Although, some travellers have noted that check-in takes forever, this wasn’t our experience as the Conquest group wasn’t a large one.
PROPERTY: The grounds and common areas are lovely and very well maintained. The resort is new so, as others have commented, the vegetation is young. The property is large – it’s approximately 1km from the main lobby and buffet area to the beach. Golf carts are available for those who prefer not to walk. During our two week stay we used the golf cart only a couple of times - I tend to pick larger resorts so that we can walk off the extra drinks and food
ACCOMMODATION: Our room was on the third floor (top) in building 30 facing open space to the west (nice sunsets). There is construction on the east side of the resort so the rooms facing that direction may not have the nicest view. If you are going to this resort you may want to consider requesting a specific building. The rooms are well appointed with a portable radio/CD player, TV with limited satellite channels and a mini fridge which is supposed to be restocked daily. There is no alarm clock and we were told that wake-up calls don’t always happen. The in-room safe must be programmed and there is a charge of 2 CUC per day. The electrical outlets in the bedrooms are 220v and can accommodate round and flat prongs. There is only one flat prong 110v outlet, located in the bathroom, and it doesn’t accommodate a wide prong. Great water pressure in the shower but we found that there was frequently a hot water shortage between 5:30 and 6:30 PM. The room and bathroom overall were very nice and the air conditioning worked well. Our maid frequently forgot to replenish the mini fridge with water. The water is in 1.5l bottles and can only be obtained from the maid and nowhere else.
POOLS: There are two large pools. The activity pool, which is located closer to the beach, has a unique cave bar surrounded by a waterfall as well as a slide – very nice. The quiet pool is located closer to the main lobby and buffet and has a swim-up bar as well. We spent our time at the quiet pool where Boris served up our favourite drinks just how we like them! Both pools have a snack bar and the servers will bring your drinks and snacks to your lounge area if you wish. There were always plenty of lounges at the pool and the pool guys will set you up with an umbrella and/or cushions. The towel exchange hut is located beside the activity pool. There is a large hot tub located behind the spa –water was not very hot.
BEACH: For me, the beach, although nice, was a disappointment. Having heard other people raving about Varadero’s beaches, my expectations were higher. I love to snorkel and I went there knowing that there was no snorkelling in Varadero because I felt an amazing beach would be a fair trade-off. In my opinion, Punta Cana DR offers much better beaches with comparably priced resort packages. The sand was not as nice and there were no palm trees on the beach. Also, the beach was not well maintained compared to other destinations we’ve visited. As anywhere else, get up early if you want a chair beside a palapa. The weather wasn’t the greatest while we were there – it was quite windy and the red flag was up most of the time so we didn’t get to use any of the equipment they have available – paddleboats, kayaks and mini cat’s . The equipment looked great and I wish we had the opportunity to use it but the weather didn’t want to co-operate. Also, the weather has nothing to do with my opinion of the beach itself – I would have the same opinion if it was calm. I just prefer a different type of beach – many people loved this one.
FOOD/DRINKS: We’ve heard a lot of negative things about the food in Cuba so we expected it to be bad but it was fine – there was always a good selection and we definitely didn’t go hungry. We found the beef tough and stayed away from it. My husband loved all the seafood – lobster at the buffet 4 times in two weeks and shrimp most days. I wasn’t happy with the salad selections and lack of dressing but I always found something I did like. We tried all four a la carte restaurants and the Japanese was our favourite. We preferred the buffet over the a la carte’s. Also, we often saw the exact same food we ate at the a la carte restaurants available at the buffet. The buffet serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and is open overnight for snacks. If you’re having dinner at the buffet, I recommend you get there early or you will see many empty trays! This wasn’t a problem during our first week but the second week was bad – perhaps they were overwhelmed with the additional guests. The snack bars (3) offer a continental breakfast and light lunch/snack. Reserve the a la carte restaurants shortly after arrival for best selection. The food selection offers something for everyone but I noticed a number of people bringing their own peanut butter, salad dressing, ketchup and other condiments. For the most part the drinks were good but inconsistent in quality from bar to bar. Even the coffee was inconsistent. If you drink coffee with milk be very clear on how much of each you like or you might end up getting milk with coffee as I did. Sitting in the same general area of the buffet helps because the servers get to know your preferences. The drinks are of a good quality and not watered down. The water in the restaurants is served out of the same bottle as the one you will receive in your room ... it didn’t taste the same to me and the bottles all appeared to be pre-opened.
STAFF: We found most staff to be helpful but at times there were communication issues. Some staff members are more experienced than others as they’ve worked in other resorts so you may find service inconsistencies – good/not so good/quick/slow. Even in the two weeks we were there we noticed changes in the newer staff members as their confidence grew - be patient with them.
ENTERTAINMENT: The quality of entertainment is what you can expect at most resorts - nothing spectacular. There was a decent dance show and water ballet show.
OTHER SERVICES: Internet access is available for 3 CUC/30 minutes and is extremely slow. There’s a money exchange office in the resort and the rate is better than at the front desk. We didn’t use the hotel phone system to make any calls because it’s very costly. Using a cell phone is cheaper. Rogers and Fido both work in Varadero. We used text messaging as it’s the most economical way – you can send a good size message for 60 cents and same as at home, it’s free to receive. Check with your carrier before leaving.
TIPPING: Tipping is expected and the quality of service you receive will depend on it. Without the tip you will be served – but the server may not be as attentive and your room might be done later in the day. The first week we were at the resort, there were only 400 guests while there were 1200 during our second week. The number of servers didn’t triple so the servers attended to whoever was more generous first. This was particularly evident in the lobby bar. We have travelled quite a bit and do tip but I must say tipping expectations were most obvious in Cuba. Another thing I noticed was guests handing gifts to servers right in the dining room, at the pool, by the bar – I don’t know if this is common practice in Cuba but I’ve never seen this anywhere else.
We had a great vacation and I would definitely recommend Sirenis la Salina for anyone considering Varadero. There are some kinks to be worked out but once they are this resort has the potential to be a 5 star. I mentioned some negative things above but none of them would prevent me from returning to this resort. It is beautiful, has a great location and the area offers many excursion options.
The real review of Sirenas la Salinas - Varedero
Trip date for Nov16-Nov22
2 of us were recently on vacation at Sirenas La Salinas Resort and we had a great time.
The staff were great, the food was pretty good, the rooms were clean, the entertainment and activities were good. Make sure you check your room on checkin as others complained but we had no issues with our room. I spoke with the manager and my only complaint was to add more night lights on the walkway to make it easier to walk at night. It was done within 24 hours.
Drinks - best bar is the lobby bar where you can get Bahama Mamas, Mojitos, Servesa, etc. Next best bar is the Piano Bar but you need to be there around 8pm for the Piano player and after 11pm it becomes a Disco.
Daytime Cave Bar is good as well but each bartender makes drinks differently.
Food - they have 4 al la carte restaurants- Italian (eh), Steak house (didn't try it), Mediteranean (hungry after you leave) and Japanese (worth the visit) . The buffet is ok if you like Omelets every day. freshly made to order. For lunch you can get Pasta, Fish, Burgers and at night, stay close to the buffet area as they bring out fresh fish and fresh produce but you have to look.
When you are tired of the inhouse food, go to one of the restaurants along main street.
Gym, they have a complete gym but the hours are from 9 to 9 so if you want to be in the sun, you may have to skip it.
Excursions - We did the catamarind trip for a day. Fun with snorkeling, dolphin swim, lazing away on a nice beach and lobster meal. Also had fun on the boat with the captain and crew. Cost was around 180 for 2 of us.
You can always walk the resort but there were so many complainers who had to walk 10 minutes to the beach (strange it was always a Quebecer). I cried for all of them.
If you don't like walking, not to worry, there's the golf carts to take you around; but be patient as you may have to wait a few minutes. There are two pools, one is the quiet pool, close to the lobby (where all the drunks were) and the activity pool with the cave pool, that's where all the games and activities takes place and it has a snack bar that serves pretty good food all day until the pool closes.The beach was really beautiful, did not stay around the beach too much as it was really windy most of the days when we were there, our favorite place was the activity pool.
Biggest issue we found with guests at the resort was complaining they had to wait.
Guess what this place is doubling in price. It will be a five star resort and you are paying a three star price.
Others Well Known Resorts in Varadero -
Some notes from those who went to other Varadero resorts during our trip, bed bugs, ants, spiders, worse food, mould, bad bartenders and smelly resorts. Some even came to Salinas the day they arrived in Cuba. Too bad their were no rooms available. Stop the crying that your towel isn't given to you right away. Stop crying if you have to wait 10 minutes to sit at a restaurant. Stop crying if you make a reservation for 2 then you are refused to get a table made for 10 when you show up at the a la carte restaurant.
BananaMamas, Cabanaboy, Camarera and Sex on the Beach....
A stunning resort, but size does matter!
The size of this resort seems to be a frequent concern amongst visitors prior to their visit, including myself. I knew there would be a lot of walking involved, so I was well prepared with comfy sandals. Fortunately the grounds were flat and the gardens were beautiful so it made the walking a lot more enjoyable. From the lobby to the beach, it was roughly a 10-15 minute walk at a leisurely pace. Golf carts were available so you can hop on one and transport you to the nearest bar.
My best friend and I, both in our early twenties, wanted a good balance of partying and relaxation and we got just that. This was my second time in Cuba this year and was extremely pleased with the overall look and feel of the resort. We were there from Nov 4th - Nov 11th.
We arrived at 6am, and decided to take a taxi to the resort instead of waiting for the shuttle at the airport. We were glad we did because the resort was roughly 30-45 minutes away so we did not want to wait for others to be dropped off since we were so tired. Front desk service was extremely slow, even though there were no other guests except us. The bell boy took us to our room and it was an unfinished room. The phone did not work and the front door was not fully done. The tv kept turning on every few minutes by itself which was a little scary. We requested another room but had to wait until the afternoon. So we took a nap and waited patiently.
There was a safe in the room, however, you need to call front desk and ask for a technician to come and activate it. This was a waste of time because you had to be in the room. We waited for half an hour the first day and he never showed up, so we called the second day and waited for another 45 min. It was considered to be a short wait compared to others who waited 3-4 hours! On a good note, the safe no long requires an extra fee. As of November 2nd, the safe became a part of your all-inclusive package. Service at the front desk was extremely poor. Everytime we called, they were very short with us and seem disinterested in helping. Other than the front desk, everywhere else had amazing service.
Rooms: Extremely bright and colourful. I was very pleased with the bathroom where the shower pressure was one of the best I've experienced! The iron was a little wonky but that didn't bother us. We were happy that the fridge was stocked everyday. The maids were great and accepted our gifts/tips graciously, folding nice towel art in return.
Food: The food gradually got better day by day. It was poor on the first day, but then they started making a lot of seafood. Lobster, fish, calamari and also turkey, pork chops, steak, etc. They were all surprisingly good and not dry. Then you have your usual pasta/salad/dessert bar. The brochure claimed that they have a 24 hour buffet and indeed they do if you consider cold cut meat that's been sitting there since the morning edible. I wanted a burger at 4am and there was one burnt patty left on the grill. He was going to re-cook that for me...no thanks. The 24 hour buffet is a lie.
A-la-cartes: You were allowed two a-la-cartes.The Mediterranean was not good at all. I am not a picky eater, but the food was cold and just wasn't appetizing. We finished it nonetheless and went straight to the buffet. We also went to the Italian restaurant which was slightly better. This was the first time I've experience a buffet better than the a-la-cartes. Now in order to make reservations, you had to wake up bright and early and line up at the front desk. We waited for two hours in line!! There were a lot of complaints from guests about this so I do hope they improve their reservation system soon.
Entertainment: I was pleasantly surprised by the quality and diversity of the nightly shows. Salsa band one night, synchronized swimming in the pool(the best show in my opinion), a professional dance group performing all the different carribbean dances. The rest were okay with your average magic shows, etc. The piano bar was nice for a cappacino after dinner. After the show, the place turns into a disco which was dead on most nights. The 24hr lobby bar was the most comfortable place to take off your shoes and relax while sipping a mojito.
Animation/Nightlife: Some were eager to get to know you, others chatted amongst themselves. They were visible during certain hours of the day around the pool for activities like waterpolo, music trivia, dance lessons, but that was it. They were helpful in telling you which clubs to go to at night so if you want night life, ask one of the animators and head out. Cab rides should range from $8-15 CUC depending on where you go. The beach party was the best. It wasn't actually a party at the beach, it's just the name. I bumped into a fellow tripadvisor member there!!
Beach: It was always crowded. All the loungers were taken by 9am. The beach wasn't as nice compared to some others I've seen, but it's the carribbean so I won't complain. The beach at Superclubs Breezes Jibacoa was a lot nicer though. It was windy by afternoon so it gets a little chilly. They ran out of towels on a few days, but when they were availabe, they were new and soft.
Pool: The highlight of the resort was the activity pool where the cave bar was. The snack bar there was great, and the one at the beach wasalso good too. The loungers by the pool were extremely comfy with the cushions. The pool boys were always happy to help you move them around if they are not busy chatting away. There is a hot tub by the gym/sauna room. It was not hot at all, but mildly warm. To our disappointment, it was not open 24 hours.
I didn't go on any excursions this time, but took off and ventured to Jibacoa, Matanzas, and Havana myself. I took the viazul bus which was 10 CUC to Havana, and took a cab to Jibacoa for 100 CUC both ways from the resort.
La Salina definitely lived up to a 4 star rating, if not more. Customer service requires a bit of polishing up, but other than that, I had a spectacular time at this grand resort. Afterall, a vacation is really how you make of it. I am just happy I stocked up on rum again! :) Until next time...adios!
Questions? feel free to ask.
We just got back from this resort on Nov. 8th. there was six of us.This review is based on our opionins and past travelling experieneces.
Resort: This resort is very beautiful and well maintained. It is very large and there is alot of walking to be done. But in our opinion we think it is the layout that is not inviting for a nice stroll around the complex so it becomes a regular routine everyday which becomes boring. We love to walk but at this resort we found that we didn't enjoy it.
Rooms: The rooms were beautiful and nicely decorated. The maid did a good job cleaning and replenshing towels etc. The beds and pillows were comfortable.
Pool: There are 2 pools which are both very large and inviting. Both have a swim up bar and 1 has a slide which is alot of fun. The only negative thing was the tiles on the bottom of the pool are sharp and uneven. Quite a few people had cuts on their feet.
Beach: The beach was good with lots of chairs and umbrellas. The water was rough everyday but that was ok with us. We just enjoy laying around and listening to the waves. There is no beach bar or bathrooms at the beach.
Food: The first few days the food was ok and after that things improved. The quality and flavor got better every day and more choices. Even though the toaster, juice machine and coffee machine broke on several occasions we made due.
Service: This was actually the first resort we had hard time getting good service or any service at all.
Staff: The staff was nice and they did they're job but we found that they were not as friendly as other resorts that we stayed in Cuba before (4 different resorts).
Overall: We had a great time. We are not fussy people and we make the best of everything. Would we recommend this place, yes definitely , in time this place will only get better.
Very Nice Hotel
Brand new hotel with future potential. Will be amazing and expensive so take advantage of it now....Anyone has questions send me an email.
For those who want to see how much they gained weight, well you got a nice scale! And those who want their coffee ASAP in the morning, well you'll have to be patient, cause there's no coffee machine. Theres no stand up shower, and a 120 lbs woman can only fit in it, so you big men forget taking a bath with your women ! Overall the rooms are very nice and have beautiful colors.
À la carte :
Italian was ok, but you'll probably end up at the buffet afterwards cause the portions are tiny. (or maybe i love to eat a lot)
Japanese: Very good and a nice presentation.
Steak: didn't go cause was not recomended by others...most people didn't like it.
Mediteraneen: Probably the best. Langoustines, steak, shrimps, all grilled.
Buffet: Honestly sometimes the buffet was cold, sometimes very good & other days just ok. There's enough to eat for everyone, so you won't starve. It's not the same everyday as some people here say. If you think your going to Queue de Cheval in Montreal, then you should stay home! It's an all inclusive!
Capuccino at the lobby...mmmmm good.
Pina coloda....PLEASE have one at the CATAMARAN at the CAYO BLANCO beach...you'll never want to have one anywhere else. It's the best 2 pesos you'll ever spend in your life :)
Lobby bar & cave bar are the best . Say hi to Nestor...makes very good drinks.
Next to beach: best snack bar...
Beach : When theres no wind...the beach is beautiful. Water is clear and sand is light gray...no its not white, but thats no big deal.
The hotel is huge, and i mean it! It takes exactly about 10 minutes from the lobby to the beach, and thats if your in good shape. So if you like to walk and not complain this is a great hotel. If your gonna whine, like i heard so many people do, then go to the hotels closer to Varadero city.
This hotel i recommend for relaxation, older crowd or young couples looking to spend quality time together. It'S NOT for party people. There's no animation and the shows are very repetitive.
Hmmmmm i dont know what else is missing so you got questions?
And i strongly recommend the CATAMARAN. A beautiful day in the wind, dolphins, snorkling and at the white beach with lots of Rum and punch :P
Your going on vacation, so relax and enjoy the sun, the alcool, the beach and the beauty of Cuba, and don'T complain.
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Varadero, Cuba January 22 to 29, 2011
"Sirenis La Salina Resort"
Jan. 22nd we started our first time visit to Cuba. In our past travels Cuba has never been in our top 50 places to visit. I had not heard bad about Cuba, I just never had the interest or desire to make this a destination. These views were about to be changed over our week adventures along the Cuba visits to (Varadero, Matanzas and Havana). Hopefully I can show you what we experienced along the way. I have been asked if I would recommend our experience to others and I would honestly say this is worth visiting. Would we go again was asked and our answer was definitely. It was truly an experience we enjoyed.
"Entrance to check-in, lounge, and main lobby"
Very clean, organized and well looked after.
"There were many inviting pools"
A lot of very nice areas to walk around, ponder and enjoy the weather.
Cuba - Island in the sun!
"Our all-inclusive Hotel Sirenis La Salina"
As mentioned, this being my first and only all-inclusive, my evaluation of this place is based simply on what I experienced during this 7-day stay with nothing else to compare.
I found the place clean and well kept. The people working there were always very friendly and eager to please.
The complex was well laid out with 21 "bungalows" having about 60 rooms each. There are two swimming pools, a theatre, the buffet area and a couple speciality restaurants. Our first night there we took a walk and thought we would never find our way around. But after a few excursions, the place was rather easy to find our way.
"Swiming pools with a bar!"
I am an avid water lover. If there is a beach or pool, then I am in it instantly! Having a bar makes it even better. Though I am not a "drinker" per say, I enjoy a social drink with friends and having it in a pool - well...
This picture shows me at the entrance of the bar behind the water fall.
It took a try or two before one can exit the bar with a drink in hand and not get it diluted with pool water! One learns quickly though.
"The famous "CoCo" taxis"
I love anything that relates to transportation. I try at every chance to drive, ride and fly whatever. In Cuba, these little motorbikes are fitted with a glass fibre shell with three moulded seats - one for the driver and two for passengers. No safety belts or anything except the driver wears a helmet. We took this taxi to come back from our day trip in Valadero. The driver was a wonderful young lady who showed us parts of Valadero. Her English was enough for us to understand, if fact she spoke extremely well.
In front of our resort was an advertisement car for antique automobiles. Though I questioned the working capability of this one pictured here, tourists have the chance to get a ride in one of the older cars we Canadians now dream of. One tour guide quickly described a typical ride in one of their "old" cars: It may get you to your destination, you smell of oil after the ride and your dream of an authentic antique car is broken by knowing that it may have parts from other makes such as Ladas, trucks, etc.
Cuba’s entertainment is Salsa type music. Fast paced tempo with body movements I can only dream of doing! There were a few nightly shows at the resort in which some of the performers made the rounds of the restaurants prior to the show. I “trapped” this particular performer for a photo showing off her costume and beauty. I am not a big fan of Salsa per say, but the performers did put on a great show to our delight.
"Cuba's culture and history"
On our Jeep Safari trip, we had a stopover for a little boat ride along one of Cuba’s rivers.
They had a show about the aboriginal story of a girl who falls sick and dies. Through a ritual dance and prayer, she regains her life. The troupe performing this included some of the tourists. It was entertaining and educational.
Beach view from the Hotel Sirenis La Salina resort
Breezes or Sirenis la salina
Has anyone stayed at these places? Which one would you recommend?
Re: Breezes or Sirenis la salina
Take a look at tripadvisor.com for reviews of hotels by past guests. Take what you read with a grain of salt, but it will give you an idea of what they may be like.
Re: Breezes or Sirenis la salina
I've stayed at Breezes twice and if was fine by me. It isn't high end like further out the East of the penninsula but the staff was great, good amenities, basketball court, tennis courts and is walking distance to the golf course. They gave me three passes for golf. They closed it two years ago and did a bunch of upgrades to it as well so it may be in even better shape now. The night shows were pretty decent and although the food won't blow you away it was reasonable. I found their stretch of beach was one of the better quality ones.