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A lot of the guests we got to know during our 2 weeks loved this hotel but not me. This maybe be down the fact they dropped on really nice rooms (villa end) in great locations, we didn't. We were originally put in the hotel with a patio door that hardly opened and as the hotel reception lobby area was closed we had to walk to the villa reception to sort it. After numerous visits to reception to try and sort it( Never visited reception as much on a holiday) we were offered a room at the villa end which unfortunately we accepted. This room had no hot water, no water pressure no working fridge and was full of mozzies and cobwebs which were not cleaned at all during our 2 weeks. Talking to lots of people we were the only one that never had towel art or anything from our cleaner ( we did wonder if this was because we had complained about the patio door on the first room) The food in the main buffet restaurant was terrible, after reading the reviews before leaving i didn't expect a lot but not that bad. The breakfast was okay. The ala carte restaurants were a lot better, just would have loved the food a bit warmer. The soft drinks were a roulette game of what it was going to taste like. The bars at the villa end closed by 10.30 which is pretty earlier for a holiday hotel and even more so when the main hotel lobby area was closed in refurb too! The waiters around the pool seem to have they favourites. We wont be returning to this hotel but i know lots will so maybe we just dropped unlucky :(
Everything was great, especially the beaches - they were fantastic. The food however was not great, and this unfortunately means we will probably not return. However having said this, the holiday was very relaxing and enjoyable.
On arrival.A warm greeting with Cuban music playing and a refreshingly cool drink handed to you as you get off the coach. Check-in was pretty hassle free. No information about meal times or the layout of the hotel etc offered or available.Room.This review is for the hotel room and not an apartment.We had a twin Seaview room on the 4th floor and to be honest, the view was outstanding. However the room wasn’t so good. The decor was from the late seventies and everything looked like it should have been thrown away 20years ago. Due to the adjoining doors between rooms (lockable) you can hear everything that goes on next door and I mean everything! The bathrooms decor was the same and the shower had the very little pressure, so much so, that you had to do a silly dance to get your body wet.The maids did an excellent job trying to keep it looking clean but, as the saying goes, you can’t polish a turd.On the plus side. The beds were comfy, the air con was good and the room had a flat screen TV, though I wouldn’t know if it worked because we never turned it on. The view from the balcony was our TV.There is a fridge in the room but it isn’t stocked, it does however have 1 bottle of water! This is the only bottle you get for your all inclusive. Once it’s drank you can get it filled with tap water behind the bar or, you can buy 5litre bottles for 2 peso, not expensive but you wouldn’t expect to pay for water in a all inclusive hotel. I hope this is an environmental drive to cut down on single use plastic bottles and not just a way of taking a few extra pounds of you. Our room also had an hair dryer, ironing board and iron. It also had plenty of plug socketsThe safe costs 14 peso per week.3/10Food.The dining hall is large with plenty of seating. The food is edible with a moderate selection, though the choice didn’t differ much each day so by the end of the holiday we were very bored with the food. There was virtually no salad option in the salad section! If you’re a meat eater then you will be in heaven.The al a cart restaurants were okay and worth a visit. You are allowed 6 over the 14 nights. This breaks up the boredom of the food in the main dinning Hall..You can also book a romantic, private meal on the beach. This costs 15 peso pp and I would highly recommend it.There is a 24 hour snack bar, serving pizza, burgers, chips and sandwiches.4/10DrinkThere are plenty of bars with a good selection of local drinks and a few brand names. Some of the bars close at 22:45 but the disco is open late and there is a 24 hour bar by the pool. The Havana bar on the 3rd floor is worth a visit, it has every type of rum imaginable.The downside is, the bars often run out of tonic water and tequila and though advertised, you cannot get a moito. Shame, seen as though they were invented in Cuba. I was tipping around a peso every other drink and the staff appeared to be happy with that. Someone who has been to Cuba 7 times said that’s about right.8/10Pool, beach and gardens.The gardens are extremely well maintained with beautiful palms and other local fauna. The pools are clean and large. There is ample sun loungers and space.The beach area is the jewel in the hotels crown. White sandy beach with crystal clear warm sea. The beach is raked daily and is free from litter however, there’s always some inbred retard who ignores the “no food or plastic plates” rule for the beach and thinks it’s ok to discard them and allow them to blow into the sea!You have a choice of free pedlos, canoes and windsurfing, all worth a go.Watch out for the resident shark, sorry, I mean jack the lad! He slowly swims up to you and passes pleasantries, he then offers to sell you drugs. When you say no, he then proceeds to tell you how poor he and his family are and asks for items of clothing and toiletries. Apparently he’s been patrolling the waters just 10 meters from the shoreline for around 3 years! Armless but not what you want when you trying to have a swim.Towels are supplied by the hotel but be careful, they have a tendency to walk! The hotel charges 20 peso for each missing towel!10/10Staff.All very very polite and friendly, from the gardener to the hotel reception staff, all brilliant, hard working and assets to this ageing hotel. Apparently the pay is very low, so a few tips are always appreciated.10/10Entertainment.Something for everyone, pool games throughout the day and live music and dancers every night. The hotel has a good games room boasting a table tennis and pool table.10/10WiFi.The hotel will sell you a WiFi card for 1.5 peso, this gives you 1 hour of data. The coverage is very limited and the speed is a little like the old dialup! Remember to turn your WiFi off when not in use to save your minutes.3/10. Should be free and better coverage.During our stay the whole of the hotel had no running water for 12 hours. This meant no flushing toilets, no water to wash your hands etc. I did wonder how the staff managed to maintain basic hygiene with no hot water, I did also wonder how they managed to wash the dishes and cooking areas between breakfast, lunch and evening meal! The plates were being brought out 4-5 at a time leaving people stood around waiting for something to put their food on.Also by the end of our fortnight, only 1 of the 4 lifts were in working order.Summary.Beautiful location with outstanding beaches. Very well kept gardens with good pools. Food and drink ok. Staff are fantastic. However the hotel rooms let everything down, it reminds me of the hotels I stayed in as a kid, some 30 years ago and like me, they haven’t aged very well. I will certainly visit Cuba again but, would I stay in this hotel again? NO! Brisas needs Its 4* rating reviewed to a possible 2*If I was scoring just the staff, pool, beach’s and Cuba it would be 10/10, but I’m scoring the whole package and therefore I can only give 4/10😔When you walk through the villages you see just how basic the Cubans homes are, so the hotel rooms are maybe a high standard to them. However what you pay to holiday here, you can go to the Dominican or other Caribbean islands and get a better standard of room.Don’t forget your mosquito repellent!!
I say "gone with the wind" because it was our running joke. No mint for mojitos, no lime for caipirinha, no tomatoes at meal time, no pineapple either because the hurricane (from what we were told) destroyed crops. And I don't care. I did not suffer for the lack of any of those. I am already looking at dates and prices to go back. I have been home for just under a week and wish I was back there. We booked VIP Villa and it was worth it. I asked for a change on one item in my mini fridge and our darling camarera took care of it right away. - The staff was incredibly attentive, non- expectant of tips and super friendly. - The beach was superbly clean- let's face it, you can't fault the hotel for what the tide brings in. - The grounds were impeccable. Folks, if you're a smoker, be kind and put your butts in one of the many ashtrays that are spread out through the resort. Take a plastic cup to the beach/ pool side and put some sand or water in it and use it as an ashtray, dump the cup on your way out. There are lots of garbage cans around. I am a smoker and I cannot stand seeing cigarette butts on the ground. - The food... wow! I have never expected anything but somewhat bland food in Cuba (and still didn't complain), unless I was at a privately owned restaurant but the food at Brisas was amazing! The kitchen staff worked tirelessly replenishing the food in the buffet. I did not see a shortage of anything. It was a pleasant surprise to see scrambled eggs in a hot dish that were not sitting in water. I am so glad I had clothes that fit me for the flight home :)- A la Cartes... again wow! Food in all of them was wonderful. Seafood restaurant comes with a show. We were awe struck by our waiter's voice. Absolutely enchanting. And it was entertaining watching the little gecko's catching moths far up on the walls. Really folks, we enjoyed that... it was entertaining to see who'd win the food chain battle. - The room. Beautiful and clean. Wonderful blanket art every day. Few hangers in the closet (the norm in Cuba so before leaving I always go to the dollar store and buy some extras, just in case, and then leave them), one of the drawers in the dresser was broken, another missing but it didn't break my vacation. No problems with water pressure or water temperature in the bathroom. Beach towels were there as we booked VIP so we didn't have to go get them at the cabana. No umbrellas in the rooms so check your forecast and bring one with you. We did and did end up using them.It rained quite a bit while we were there and I was always up around 5-6 a.m. so my favourite place became the 24 hr snack bar. By the beach and pool, close to our room, it was my go to spot. I'd wake up, grab my "to go" cup and iPad, go get my coffee and sit and read while I waited for others. After meal coffees were there, day time drinks were there, chill and relax before bed was spent there. Major shout out to the staff there :) Carmen, Cesar and Diego (only names that I remember because of name association) and all of the others who always knew what to bring me before I asked, you are an amazing bunch. I don't drink much, I don't drink often (except coffee and water) but they always knew.Try the snack bar food, you'll be impressed. Try the churros and ice cream, you won't be disappointed. Watch the shows, see the bands, explore and above all, be open to the fact that you are in another country that has little to work with but they make the best of what they have. I can't say anything about tipping, I didn't do much of it due to personal reasons and I honestly can't say that I suffered for it. I've been in other resorts where I tipped a lot and got less than impressive service, this time I couldn't and the service was impeccable. Side notes: the Guardalavaca market is a 2 minute walk from the resort, go and enjoy it. The vendors change over, but I'm not sure how often each one is there. Last year it was at a different location and bigger so I assume they have to take turns now due to the smaller spot.Don't buy your cigars from anyone who isn't a certified seller. I witnessed one fellow putting the "official" stickers on the boxes while he sat on the beach with a potential buyer. Someone is smoking banana leaves.Gift shops and bottles: the main building shop has a wider selection than the villa section shop. Bottles here are priced the same as in the airport- I have found that is not the case in all resort shops vs. airport. Bring some duct tape to seal the neck of the bottles, it's happened to us that some seals aren't 100% and they leak on the way home.Tours: we did a private tour. Repeat tourists into Holguin with this guide, he caters the tours to what you want to do. PM me for his info, but book him early. Go see what Cuba is outside of the resort. It's a beautiful country that is rich with history.
We have been to Cuba many times. Mostly Veradero, but we have been to Holguin once before. This is the highest rated hotel we have stayed at in Cuba. Four stars and I think it is a well deserved 4 stars. The food is the best I have ever had in Cuba. Pasta bar is always a great bet and there is plenty of variation between proteins. Always plenty of bread and salads. We only did one ala carte and it was the Cuban. A good meal but similar to the buffet. We had an ocean view room and it is worth the small price for the upgrade. For those people complaining about this hotel. This is as good as it gets in Cuba. The only complaint I could possibly have is that there is not enough shade spots on the beach and in spite of hotel policy about not saving beach / pool spots, people still do. A great place at a good price, I would recommend and would go back to this hotel. A great experience over all.
Vacations packages include round-trip flights, accommodations, round-trip transfers (unless outlined below) to and from the hotel, and tourist cards (if required, unless outlined below).
If selecting an all-inclusive resort option, the package will also include the all-inclusive features as outlined by each resort.
Items not included:
- Travel insurance (mandatory if traveling to Cuba)
- Tourist cards ($10USD) if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing Airlines
- Departure taxes ($20USD) if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing or Signarture Vacations
- Resort fees (if applicable) must be paid directly to the hotel
- Hotel transfers for packages to USA
- Hotel transfers for packages to Europe
- Items of a personal nature
- Buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
- 24 hr snacks
- 24 hr Domestic & select International brand drinks, House Wine included
- Pedal boats
- Use of bicycles 9am-5pm
- Game room
- Pool table
- Exercise classes
- Dance lessons
- Daily activities
- Nightly entertainment
- Free admission to the Disco, drinks included
- 437 rooms in 9 villas and one 5-storey building
- 2 buffet restaurants
- 2 a la carte restaurants: Italian and Seafood, dress code & reservations required
- Snack bar
- 8 bars including Swim-up bar, Coffee bar
- 4 pools, including 2 children's
- 2 lit tennis courts on-site
- Gift shop
- Exercise room
- Beauty salon
- Scuba diving (fee)
- Internet access (fee)
- Car rental
- Laundry service (fee)
- Medical services (fee)
- Horseback riding nearby (fee)
- 1 king or two 3/4 beds
- Satellite TV
- In-room safe (fee)
- Balcony or terrace
- Full bathroom
- Hairdryer 220V (converter & adaptor required)
- Balcony or terrace
- Max occupancy 3 persons
- Same as above with ocean view
- Same as above, located adjacent to the hotel block in 2 & 3-storey villas
- Larger room w/garden or pool view
- Max occupancy 3 adults or 2 adults & 2 kids
- Same as above, larger than Villa
- Sitting area and sofa bed
For the Kids - Kids 4-12 enjoy supervised activities daily at the Kids' Club. Babysitting service subject to availability (fee).
Wedding Packages - Available, please inquire for details.
Early Booking Bonus - This hotel may offer early booking bonuses at certain times of the year. If early booking bonuses apply to your vacation, prices shown online have already been adjusted accordingly. Please inquire for complete details.
Resort Location Map
- Hotel Contacts
- Extra Info
Calle 2, Playa, Guardalavaca 84170 Cuba
Some restaurants may be open for certain meals only and limited visits may apply. Reservations required and dress code in effect for a la carte restaurants. Time restrictions may apply for water sports.
Child pricing may only be available with select tour operators and valid for select dates and durations. Child pricing rules are subject to change without notice. Please contact one of our vacation specialists if you require assistance with child pricing.
Photo identification and/or credit card or cash deposit may be required at check-in for incidental charges.
Extra-person charges may apply and vary depending on hotel policy. Rollaway beds and cribs (infant beds) may be available and should be requested at the time of booking; fees may apply.
Special requests are subject to availability upon check-in. Special requests cannot be guaranteed and may incur additional charges upon check-in to fulfil.
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