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Sol Cayo Largo
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Reviewed 7 February 2012

Was upgraded from the Pelicano to the Sol Club in January 2011 and I immediately fell in love with the charms of the El Cayito. But on the last day, they ran out of tonic water. Oh well, I thought, there's always next time.

In January 2012 the bus dropped us off after the 6AM Toronto flight at 10:30AM in the hotel. The rooms were not ready, not until 3PM we were told. Others were outraged, but I just changed into my beach gear in the lobby men's room and headed for the beach, snorkeled, and say two fish underwater before lunch.

But everything in the hotel seemed just a bit run down. The El Cayito was STILL out of tonic water! That's okay, I happened to bring a bottle in my suitcase....how did I somehow know? The decorative pond at the western end by all the restaurants has not been scrubbed down in years: It looks terrible. I had a family member dying back at home and this time, of all times for that to happen, they ran out of the internet access cards. We were all cut off from the outside world for the entire week! The musicians seemed particularly dispirited, and could only work their way through a repertoire of about 18 numbers. No free-form jamming, like the Septuo Son de Calman (of Varadero fame)

My complaint is that this is the most pricey hotel on the island. I could have saved a bundle had I gone to the Playa Blanca and had the same complaints.

i will return here some day, but the magic spell has been broken.

JG, Toronto

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled solo
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8  Thank studentjohn36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 February 2012

The resort is a bit older and could do with a fresh makeover. While the rooms are clean, it does feel dated and the bathrooms could use some serious updating.

The property itself sits above a rocky ledge, so if you want the typical Cuban beach, you have to use the tram/train that takes you to Playa Paraiso or Playa Sirena. Otherwise, the resort pool is very nice, albeit noisy with the loud music at one end and the sound of the folks at the bar at the other end. It doesn't matter where sit along the pool, it's hard to avoid the noise.

The front desk and restaurant staff were always very friendly and helpful; however, we did notice the workers on the property were definitely not as outgoing. But if you initiated the "hola", they would always respectfully reply.

The food at the buffet was just OK. While there was enough variety, I do concur with other reviewers about there being way too many flies circling around the food which could be easily remedied by being covered. The food at the hot stations were often warm at best. Stick with the pasta bar, grill area and omelette stations where the food is prepared in front of you if you're concerned about proper sanitation and food preparation. There's only 1 a la carte restaurant and you do need to make a reservation. The food is definitely better but you may only be able to get in once possibly twice on a one week stay.

There is no room service and the fridge is only stocked with water.

Couple of things to point out that really make the trip more worthwhile at the beaches...

1) If you can afford it, rent a car to get to the Playa Paraiso and Playa Sirena. Otherwise, the "train" ride can be very dusty, smelly (of the gas fumes), and long (30 minutes). However, it will be a bumpy ride no matter which mode of transportation you take. With the car, you can also check out the "town" or head over to the beaches in the east (ie: Playa Blanca).

2) Get to the beach early if you want a palapa. They go FAST!

3) Try out the restaurant at Playa Sirena...If you are a lover of shellfish, the grilled giant lobster tails are AMAZING (and cheap)!!!

4) For the ladies - If you're fussed about hygiene/sanitation, bring toilet paper (as you'll only get a couple of squares with your tip), and travel wipes or hand sanitizers for the washrooms at Playa Sirena.

For the money, Sol Cayo Largo provides good value.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank GeeGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2012

In contrast to our first visit to the Sol Cayo Largo in March 2011, this visit was not as good. The first irritation was our room assignment which was directly adjacent to the noisy lobby and entertainment area. Being early risers, the noise was noticeable on a few occasions but especially irritating on the final night when bus loads of partiers arrived back from their Friday night Village activities at 3:00 AM. On the positive side, this was a very clean and well maintained room with an ocean view.

The major concern I have relates to a very serious stray electricity problem that existed in a food island in the buffet restaurant. I found it very offensive to be laughed at by the server who was always wearing heavy rubber soled shoes when he touched the serving trays. Even when this problem was brought to the attention of the Manager, the issue seemed to be shoved aside. The high voltage shocks were also brought to the Manager’s attention by a young French speaking lady who was wearing light soled flip flops. After her confirmation of my complaint, the rational expectation would be for the manager step into action and shut off the breaker until an electrician arrived; but this was not the case. Seeing this inaction, I started to wear my dry street shoes with a heavy pair of socks for insulation; just in case I happened to be tempted by the food (bacon) on that island. On third day, my wife watched as a barefooted man screamed and threw a serving spoon across the room when he got shocked. Good thing he didn’t have a pacemaker in his heart because he was pretty well grounded and could have died! Shortly thereafter we finally did see someone doing repairs. This safety-second attitude does not sit well with me.

On the positive side, the food in the buffet was quite good and varied. Breakfast was always good with crepes, bacon, orange juice and champagne. Lunch at the beach was good enough to get us through the day. The view of the ocean made up for the numerous flies and marginal food. Any calories not consumed at lunch were definitely made up for by the top notch Buccanero beer that was served at the beach bar. The nice man also made some excellent mixed drinks that were greatly enjoyed throughout the week. As before, the staff at the lobby bar were always very efficient at serving happy hour drinks and cappuccino’s following dinner.

There was always a good beach with ample shade and loungers. The ability to take long walks to the west helps make this a destination of choice. We’ll definitely be back to Cayo Largo but in light of our experience we’ll likely give other resorts more consideration.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank AlbertaFarmers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2012

Although many people easily complain about the food (availability and taste) as well as how the hotel is kept (cleanliness and repairs), we had a very pleasant two week stay at hotel Sol. One has to keep in mind that you are in Cuba and things are not as available or standards are not the same as in Canada. Cuba is well known for his people... friendly... charming.... going out of their way to please you. This is very true at hotel Sol. The beaches are a true paradise. If you are looking for a relaxing, uncomplicated stay in a little paradise of yours.... then go to hotel Sol. If you are looking for fine food and wine in an outstanding facility then go elsewhere.... like Sandal hotels in Jamaica. We send kisses to Michel, Saskia, Nestor, Cesar, and all the ladies at the front desk and the store.... See you again soon.

Room Tip: Second floor rooms with ocean view are a must if you want to enjoy this unbelievable combination of wilderness and ocean.... your little paradise.
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank RayPatpottawa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2012

We just came back from a 5 star in Cancun,for some reasons,even if i loved my last week vacation in luxury and modern comfort,it made me think of my simple week in Cayo Largo where i saw the most beautiful beaches ever!,

If you go with an open heart,open mind and just realistic expectations,i promise you will never be disapointed!The rooms are comfortable,the food is good,the sun is shinning and you dont need a bathing suit if you dont feel like wearing one!Half of the beach is for nudist so be prepared...or join the freedom team of happy adults enjoying the sun everywhere ,no tan lines!

We were there end of march 2011 and the weather was perfect.Please take the little train that bring you to the most amazing sight for beach lovers,miles and miles of turquoise water with pure white sand,and starfish everywhere!
Lots of cusumers there return years after years and i can understand why,this place is a little piece of paradise in the rought,not too commercialized yet adorable and so relaxing!

Last thing but not least,when we were there,the barman at the beach was really generous with the alcool in your drink so go easy and dont drink too fast!Enjoy SolCayo Largo ,an experience you can never forget!

Room Tip: Oceanview is nice but there s big dunes of sand in front of it...still nice to hear the ocean,you cant go wrong...
  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank SunnyAnneMontreal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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