My mom and I returned on Monday from Iberostart Laguna Azul - we traveled together and met my cousin there who was in a wedding. This is my first trip to Cuba and it was awesome. I enjoyed it much more than the Dominican and found there was less people "begging" and more people who were truly working hard regardless; and very much appreciative of a tip rather than expecting it. The Staff at this resort truly make it - they work so hard to make your stay pleasant. Clean resort, gardeners and towel guys like to give you flowers! We were in Building 17 - not great scenery from our balcony but quiet room good for sleeping. Our bathroom door had a tendency to stick but this aside- no complaints. We didn't use our mini bar much but found water and pop was replenished without issues. We had no problems getting clean towels for the beach- and only one day was there an issue with bathroom towels being hard to come by in the morning- but our maid came later in the day to personally deliver a couple.
I never Critique food as I'm a picky eater at home and even worse away... so I never think it's fair for anyone to have a negative view based on me... I may have lived on pizza pasta and fries but.. I lived, and I did also find chicken, beef and salads; certainly not any worse than anywhere else I've been (mexico/dominican) but..thats me. Certainly not a ton of variety (but it IS CUBA.) I recommend the pasta at Buffet (you get to watch Silvio heat up ingredients of your choices and pick which pasta you like.) If you attend any of the 3 snack bars by the pools ORDER THE PIZZA.
Great Ice CREAM at Buffet or Ice Cream Stand (open til 4.) This is the first resort I have been to where it was NEVER an issue to find a lounge at poolside OR under a hut at the beach- sometimes it was a little more difficult to come by cushions (only available poolside) but- no complaints really overall. The disco is not too bad sometimes the music is better than others. Bring your insulated travel mugs :)
DRINKS: every bar makes the differently. PERSONALY had the best luck with Miami Vice and Vodka and lemonade from the Beach Bar, OR- the bald bartender at the lobby bar!
Speaking of the lobby there is a hummingbird nest in a tree between the piano and the bar entrance. (Very cool.!)
This is also the first trip I've been on where we skipped the excursions - 2 hours to Havanah by bus was too much for me to leave my spot !
BRING A VOLTAGE CONVERTER. We were told it was all upgraded but its all still 220V. I was able to plug in most things: read your electronics most are good to 240V but if it isn't you can't plug it in without a voltage converter.
Internet is 10 bucks for an hour card and it is pretty slow. No WiFi. Telus phones work, but expensive without a plan.
ONE MORE THING: Keep your 25 pesos for exit tax and TREAT YOURSELF: 25 additional pesos per person at the Cuban Airport will "buy you" into the VIP lounge : All inclusive lounge that is air conditioned, and has drinks, snacks and big screen tvs along with wall outlets which are all converted to OUR VOLTAGE... and you dont stand in line. A nice way to end the trip- and
THANK YOU to the fellow in the lobby wearing the buffalo Sabres hat last Monday that gave me that little tidbit of info - Best Kept Secret and soooo hellpful!!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located on a beautiful stretch of Varadero's Beach. Approximately 160 km from Havana and 20 min. from downtown Varadero. 814 rooms allocated in different buildings, 24 are suites and 8 are for handicapped. Reception 24 hrs. open, currency exchange, internet 24 hrs. Buffet restaurant with show cooking and 4 a la carte restaurants and Ranchón near the beach. Lobby bar, Cigar bar, aqua-bar, and 2 snacks bars at the pool. Conference rooms, SPA, gym, and beauty salon, 2 tennis and paddle court. Ice cream saloon, animation theatre and disco. 5 outdoor swimming pools. Miniclub (4-12 years). ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Iberostar Laguna Azul Hotel Varadero