Beaches Varadero

Jan 30th, 2002, 02:37 PM
  #1  
Laura
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Beaches Varadero

Has anyone been to Beaches Varadero recently? My husband and I are going in March and are keen to get up-to-date information as to the level of service/facilities etc. now that the hotel has had time to recover from the hurricane last year. We'd be particularly interested to hear from anyone who had visited within the last couple of months, however any information at all about the resort would be appreciated.
 
Feb 9th, 2002, 03:42 AM
  #2  
Marc
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My wife and I just got back on Jan 20/02.It was our second time there in the last 2 years. We love the place. You really should ask me some specific questions . If you like a nice long sandy clean beach then it's the place for you.Lots of seafood AND regular food. I am more of a beef and potatoe person but I found the menus to be excellent.The staff are wonderful and the place is very clean. You don't have to rush down to the beach to reserve a chair etc. It has a fabulous pool too. There was no sign of hurricane damage, as a matter of fact I don't recall any damge last year either (April 2001).
Jot down some questions and I'd be happy to reply.
 
Feb 14th, 2002, 01:26 PM
  #3  
Laura
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Hi Marc - thanks for your reply.

I do indeed have many specific questions. Here goes.....

Which room types have you stayed in, and do you think it makes a difference to the service you get? Do you find that you need to tip the staff in order to get good service (we thought Beaches was a no-tipping resort)? Did you take any gifts for the staff?

How many, and what type of restaurants are there, and are you limited on their use or availability in any way? Also, whilst I'm not a vegetarian, I do enjoy this type of food, so do they serve any vegetarian dishes at all?

After eating, is there a nice bar to sit for a drink? How often is there entertainment (and is it worth watching, or should we take the Scrabble!)

Do you know if it is possible to hire bicycles, and is it safe to go for walks out of the resort?

Finally, what watersports were available, are they limited in any way, and is it true that you can only do them in the mornings? How is the tuition (& what language is it in)?

Sorry the list is so long, it's just that I'm particularly keen to hear your opinions, seeing as you've visited so recently, and more than once!

Thanks in advance,

Laura.
 
Feb 14th, 2002, 05:31 PM
  #4  
Mary Jane
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Hope you don't mind my butting in. You may want to check out theis site: caribtravelnews.com There's an article about the resort from last march which is quite interesting. My husband and I leave on Jan. 25 for Beaches and I have another question ... How dressy is the dress code at dinner in the evening? Also wondering if it will be really warm or will we need sweaters at night? Thanks
 
Feb 16th, 2002, 05:51 AM
  #5  
Marc
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Hi Laura
I'll try to answer your questions as best i can. my preference for rooms were the outer buildings, just to the left or right of the main building. The main building upper floors are the most expensive and have added service, but in all honesty we were very content to be where we were. gardenview was just fine. as for tips, the staff never ever act like they want one, but will accept if offerred. sometimes i did, sometimes i didn't and u don't notice much of a change in service. they do like receiving little knick knacky gifts....your maid might like lipstick or hair accessories. doesn't have to be expensive. they appreciate anything. we gave our favorite waiter one of those tim horton insulated mugs and he was thrilled. by the way, if u like drinks at the beach be sure to take some of those!
restaurants....there is an italian one, a seafood one, both of which require reservations....usually 2 sittings per night, if u do it the day before u can usually get in. i was able to same day early morning once.then there is the buffet restaurant that pretty well has a large variety of food. its a little bit louder there though but find a good area with your favorite waiter.the pool also has a restaurant there.they were good at lunch if you just wanted snacky things, burger , fries etc plus some healthier stuff.i believe there are lots of vegetarian type dishes there. i didn't hear anyone complain about the food. it wasn't 5 star dining, but pretty good.
just quickly back to the room situation...quickly scout out the one u are assigned before u unpack etc...if its not to your liking, go back take a look at the area u might like and go back and request a switch. we did that and the next day they gave us a new one where we were happier.
entertainment wise i found it to be evry good. each night they have activities near the pool at the grandstand, they mix it up very well ,one night it is their big show, another it might be the newlywed game, another something else....usually starts around 9ish and finishes by 11. u really should go to them all if u can, my wife decided not to go to the one night and it was the funniest of all. disco-wise i was a tad disappointed. it is somewhat quiet mainly because they play latin music all night and hard for canadian folk to dance too. the one nite a lady brought in her own cd dance music mix and the floor was packed, so if u want to dance u may try that.the drinks everywhere were good, but i do suggest u bring your own container esp for the beach because they use tiny glasses.
you will LOVE the beach.....it is long, sandy, clean and beautiful.

you are in a very safe area so yes u could venture off. i'm sure they had bikes there somewhere. we went on the jolly roger cruise and enjoyed it. it cost $70 US each but worth it. u also get an extra sunset cruise thrown in.
watersports wise there were kayaks and stuff at the beach that were free. you could also hire someone right there to take u out snorkelling, or on a banana boat ride.....the prices seemed ok.i'm not sure what u mean by tuition but most staff understood enuff english to converse with you. all money was american.
i was surprised at how clean things were. but if you are a non-smoker you may find the airport and other places really smoky.
please feel frre to ask more, and if i think of anything i'll let you know.are u from canada? and are u thru signature or sunquest?
dress code wise, if you go to the reservation restaurants you may want to dress nicer than nromal. some women went all out, most men were in casual. but don't worry too much, the majority were somewhere in the middle.we brought light jackets down but rarely used them. at night it gets a tad cooler but i sat there in a shirt most nights.
enjoy !
Marc
 
Feb 17th, 2002, 12:39 AM
  #6  
Laura
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Hi Marc,

Thanks for all the info - we're particularly looking forward to going now - it all sounds great!

We're from Bristol, in the South West of England, so it'll be great to get away from all the rain we're having at the moment.

Regarding tuition, I meant do they show you how to do the watersports if you haven't done them before (i.e. I can already water-ski, but would like to learn how to windsurf). Did they have waterskiing and windsurfing, by the way?

Great idea about the disco - I'll be taking along some of my dance CD's.

By the way - what's a "Tim Horton insulated mug"? - we've never heard of these!


My husband, Mark, and I are both non smokers. Do they have specific non-smoking areas in any of the restaurants?

Also, I tend to find air conditioning very cold - on previous holidays I have found that I need to wear a sweater in the air-conditioned restaurants. Are any of the restaurants at Beaches air conditioned, and is it switched to a very cool temperature, in which case I'll know to pack a sweater!

Did you visit Havana whilst you were there? If so, was it on an organised excursion? What did you see?

Thanks again,

Laura.

 
Feb 19th, 2002, 09:21 AM
  #7  
Marc
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Hi again Laura lady
The watersports equipment was all at the beach. There were kayaks, windsurfers etc there...and i there was waterskiing too but i'm not sure if it was free or not. there are staff around that i think will give some instruction if needed.
tiim hortons is a coffee/donut chain here and they sell insulated mugs with lids that keep your drink either hot or cold. i recommend you bring some for the beach. the beach bar was a short walk but the glasses are so small and plastic that u will prefer having a mug to keep your drink cold.
the non-smoking areas at the resort were good, but in cuba airport it was bad.lots of people smoke everywhere but i didn't find it real annoying at the resort.
in some areas it could get quite cool from the air conditioning, the buffet restaurant at times. so bring at least 1 sweater. i forgot to mention to you that there is some ssness at this resort. originally i was told that didn't happen much in cuba.
we didn't do the havana package but some people did and they enjoyed it. it was an all day thing that they offerred at the resort, but u may be able to find someone for a shorter excursion.
keep the questions coming if you wish
Marc
 
Feb 20th, 2002, 09:57 PM
  #8  
Shannon
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Laura...when are you going...we are canadian and booked for march 11-17.

Marc....Thanks for all the info!! We are booked in a garden villa via Sunquest vacations on air transat.

Is is mostly canadian and british at this resort? Any americans?

Do you have any photos of the resort you can email me?

Is there a lot of tropical gardens at this resort? Thanks.

 
Feb 21st, 2002, 03:13 PM
  #9  
Marc
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Hi Shannon

I would say that there are at least 80%. This year I did not meet 1 American. The others are some European , some South Americans surprisingly.
I don't have a scanner so no photos yet sorry. As for tropical gardens, there is natural vegetation all around , but you didn't see flowers etc.
I made a typo in mylast message. It was supposed to say that there was toplessness here, not abundant but more than us Canadainas are used to.
Another note regarding rooms , be careful if u are down the far right hand side as you face the water....near the pool there tended to be a sulphur-like smell....not very romantic.
You will love the beach , it is a short hike from the actual room so bring sandals for sure. You will love the beach . If you enjoy long walks it is wonderful.
 
Mar 1st, 2002, 12:59 PM
  #10  
Laura
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Hi Shannon

Looks like we'll just miss you - we're going from March 20th to April 3rd.

Have fun, and let me know what you thought on your return!

Laura.
 
Mar 26th, 2002, 04:50 AM
  #11  
Keith
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We were at Beaches Varadero a couple of years ago and really enjoyed it. Unless things have changed, the windsurfing & snorkelling were included in the "all inclusive" package from the hotel, as was the banana ride. The service was really good, food was OK - they tended to run out of some ingredients by the end of the week in the restaurants, but it made for variety as you could order the same dish more than once and it would taste completely different!
 
Apr 5th, 2002, 08:50 AM
  #12  
Marc
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Laura & Shannon
Are you ladies back yet? did you enjoy it?
Marc
 
Apr 9th, 2002, 09:54 PM
  #13  
shannon
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yes we are back and we had a great time! The service was a bit slow at times but not really a problem. The rooms were clean and nice and the food was pretty good. The grounds are awesome. Drinks were plentiful and the beach rocked!! Lots of shade available on the beach too (sun too!). We would go back...
 
Apr 11th, 2002, 06:05 PM
  #14  
questions
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Sorry to be so dense but where is Beaches Varadero located? Is it one of the Beaches (Sandals) resorts? I thought I knew where they were all located but the name's unfamiliar...
Thanks!
 
Apr 12th, 2002, 10:35 PM
  #15  
shannon
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Beaches varadero is in... varadero!.. on the hicacos penisula in cuba. It is part of the sandals chain. You may not have been aware of it as sandals head office is in the USA and they don't represent or advertize for the cuban sandals/beaches resorts. There is a new sandals opening in the fall in varadero too, called sandals royal hicacos. See www.sandals.co.uk (UK sandals site, not US sandals site) for info. Cuban sandals resorts are much cheaper!
 
May 15th, 2002, 06:48 PM
  #16  
kristen
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Could you tell me if Beaches Varadero would be nice for a thirty something and eight year old daughter? We live in Canada and have ever been to Cuba before.
Also any tips on good deals for accomadations. Thanks for any advice.
Kristen in Vancouver
 
May 18th, 2002, 05:43 PM
  #17  
Marc
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Hi Kristen

Beaches Varadero is adlults-only. but there are many resorts along that same strip that allow children. find the best deal you can and go for it.any part of that beach is beautiful, plus you can walk it for miles. we did see lots of chldren at the other resorts and i think they have activities available to keep the kids busy if you and your hubby want to get away for abit. if so, walk the beach, you'll love it.
 
May 20th, 2002, 09:27 PM
  #18  
kristen
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thank you marc!
 
May 21st, 2002, 06:12 AM
  #19  
edd
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Sadly, it looks like we in the USA will still not be allowed to enjoy this resort as it is in Cuba and our fearless leader just yesterday restated that we will never be allowed to visit as long as that pinko commie is in charge.
 
May 23rd, 2002, 10:56 AM
  #20  
Jacky
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We just got back from Varadero on May20/2002. My wife and me drove de peninsula on bike and no trace of hurricane. Beaches are clean and gorgeous and hotels not needed to recover anything. Go there whithout question if your are looking for sun and sand.
 

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