Club Amigo Guardalavaca
- What's Included
- All Inclusive Features
Location: On Guardalavaca Beach and 60 minutes from the airport.
We stayed at this resort in April we had a very bad experience chequing out, the housekeeping management accused us of taking a blanket from the room we end up paying 20 dollars for it. Towels were never changedFood was not very good (I know is Cuba but they should put a little effort into it)Everything else was good.
I went to this place for 4 days because of work. By that time I was a tour guide in Cuba and I was assigned to take a big group of national tourists to this place for a long week-end. I give it 2 stars because the weather was very nice during our stay and the service of the workers was good, except at the front desk, where the workers look at you as a piece of meat, they always want to charge you for everything. The hotel is pretty big since it is like 3 different building complexes that form the club. the rooms are in terrible shape and the beds very uncomfortable. the food during those days was very bad, no variety, we had the same main courses for 4 days in a row. It was only worthy to go there for breakfast. The snack bar was way better. It's not an expensive place I have to admit but I would rather pay some extra dollars and go to a better hotel.
On Mar. 23/17 we flew from Prince George in Northern B.C. with Westjet on an all inclusive package to Holguin (via Vancouver and Toronto) arriving in Holguin in early afternoon and being bused about 1 1/2 hrs. to Guardalavaca to Club Amigo Atlantico. We were treated very well by the hotel staff right from registration to departure....very accommodating, friendly and helpful. We upgraded to a "Tropical Seaview" room when we booked and it really paid off as we were given a renovated room only 4 doors from the stairs to the pool and beyond that the beach. The room was noisy when we first arrived as it was pouring rain and all the guests were in the lounge which was right outside our door. The bar closed at 11 pm and the noise stopped. This resort is a combination of 4 hotels each with their own pools, restaurants, bars and character. The standard room hotel was the cheapest and seems to be what they call the barracks (not yet upgraded), then there are the villas which are larger rooms ( a little dark and musty) on 2 stories along the seaside which is mostly along a sort of cliff area with wide grassy area in front with a lovely walkway along it and with nearby access to a couple of small beach cove areas. The largest cove being the Pirate bar area that has steps down to it. Otherwise, they would walk to the beach area in front of our room in the "Tropical" section. The (2 story) Bungalows were directly behind our hotel and people staying there would use either the very large pool in front of their rooms or to the beautiful beach in front of our rooms. As our hotel was where all of the action (except the night show took place), a common complaint by people staying in the Standard rooms, the bungalows and even in some of the Villas further away was that there was so much walking to get to the buffet, activities and beach. It is easy to find a site plan of these 4 different hotel areas if you look further on this website and it is very helpful when choosing a room which at this resort can make all the difference between having a good holiday and a great holiday. The main hotel (Tropical beach section) that we stayed in had the biggest buffet, most coffee and alcohol bars, the best beach area and this is where all the daily activities took place, i.e. walking and bike tours, language lessons, mini-golf and beach bocci ball tournament, darts, dance lessons and bingo. They also had pool volleyball each day. Then there was the excellent nightly entertainment at the open air stage at the "Standard rooms" hotel. Their once a week water ballet was exceptional with beautiful costumes and great acrobatics. I am not a fan of break dancing but their display of that was out of this world....absolutely unbelievable. They would have a house band play for the 1st hour after supper (same Cuban beat all through the show got a little hard on the ears) and then the main feature would come on which would be anything from Cuban dancers, kareoke, imported band/singers, variety show. But there was very little audience participation (embarassing) shows which was a good thing. They also had a children's hour before the main show which lasted to around 11 pm. The main shows were very well attended and the highlight of each day. A schedule of the daily events was posted in the main sitting lounge area of our hotel as well as at the buffet dining room door. Speaking of dining, there was never a shortage of food, dishes or seating at the buffets and it was a good place to see other guests. The dining room staff were very friendly and there was a good variety of food at the buffet or available fresh cooked on the grill. There was always fish, chicken, pork and sometimes beef. As well as the buffets (2) there were other bars around the pools where you could get ham-burgers (made with ham instead of ground beef) and hotdogs and french fries. For breakfast we went to the large open air bar with great seaview near the Villas where the service was better than Benny More's (also with a great sea view). The first breakfast at Benny's was great (eggs, bacon, fruit plate) and the next day it was awful (no bacon left, cold) and the service was sooooo slow that we never went back to it. Instead we ate nearly every day after that at the large bar where the menu was same as Benny's and never ran out of bacon and so much faster. From there we would walk just a little further along the beach in front of Brisas resort. We couldn't walk through this resort but they couldn't stop you from walking along the beach which had interesting tidal pools and then on to the nice long fishing pier with benches to sit at and enjoy the views. The locals kept their fishing boats at the back side of this pier and there was a small fishing village that you could walk to or take a horse and buggy ride (as we did) to it. Interesting little village with a nice shallow beach I couldn't resist getting off the buggy and getting my feet wet in it. We took 2 westjet tours into Holguin. One at night that included a trip up to the Cross on the Hill, a visit to the 1720 hotel and the most wonderful violin (3 girls) concert on top. Following that we went to the main square for a few minutes and then to a disco where we had our own room where we were treated to Cuban dancers, free cigars (ugh) and a light snack, NOT supper as the tour brochure advertised. So, if you are going to take this tour, make sure you have supper before. We were told by the tour guide, Mercedes (who was excellent) that the supper was discontinued a few months ago. The bus got us back to our hotel after midnight ....a great tour. Only complaint I had besides the false advertising of supper being included was that the music at the Cuban dance performance was so loud that I could feel the vibrations in my chestbone and even with fingers in my ears for the full duration of the music barely brought it down to a bearable level. The guide asked them twice to turn it down as did my husband but they kept it up as loud as they liked....the room was small and had a low ceiling and there was nowhere else to go to wait it out so we were "trapped". As long as I am "complaining" I may as well include the only other complaint I had which was about smoking at the hotel. There were lots of "non-smoking" signs posted in the lobby and bar area but the guests ignored them (many were smokers) and the staff didn't enforce them so if we wanted to play cards or just people watch at the lounges as we had a drink or coffee, we had to find an area that the wind blew the right way blowing the smoke away from us. I felt this should have been better enforced as there were many designated smoking areas as well. The layout of the hotel with the very large main lounge area which was like a sidewalk cafe (with drinks and coffee available) was between the main desk and the beach. The wind blew right through the hotel from the large open "doors" at the reception area to the opening to the beach so it was more like a street than a lobby. There was a piano at the bar on the 2nd floor where someone played nightly after supper and before the main show at the Standard Hotel....the lady piano player was soooo good! We took a 2nd tour into Holguin and Gibera....a day tour and that was a full day of siteseeing which included a steam train ride into the country, lunch (lobster was one of the choices) at a new hotel which also had some good entertainers (3 singers) and a tour through Holguin where we could take a walk around the main square that we had seen before by night and also a chance to shop souvenirs and ice cream. We also went on a short catamaran ride ....it was an interesting tour which started at 7:30 am and got back to hotel at 5:00 pm ($76). On this tour, we had to wait about 20 mins. before the steam train came back so the bus took us for a little tour around the village and then we were dropped off at the parking area in front of a sort of loading platform at the back of the train station.....don't miss taking a walk along this platform and peeking into the business doors along it. There are a few dark business fronts...bare bones. It is a real eye opener as to the unavailability of building/plumbing materials.....many people just waited along the tracks for the train and this little peek into the buildings was very interesting. We also took 2 horse and buggy rides with Roberto who was one of the few guides who spoke a little English and could tell us a little more about what we were seeing, The 1st tour ($20 for the 2 of us about 1 1/2 hrs.) we took with him was up into a poor village off the main road from the airport to our hotel. This is where we distributed the suitcase full of clothes we took to give away as well as the suitcase. If you tell Westjet you have a suitcase of only things to give away (humanitarian) they will let you take an extra 50# suitcase free of charge per person. This is the 6th trip to Cuba for us and as soon as we discovered this we have taken free things ea. time .......everything is needed but shoes are badly needed and next time we were going to take one suitcase full of shoes and another with clothes. We also take school supplies (scribblers, pencils, etc.). The 2nd trip with him ($15) we went to the small fishing village I mentioned above, through the farming country side and through the village of Guardalavaca (means guard the cow) which was also very interesting...he pointed out where the school, market, doctor, dentist, etc. were. He was very friendly and informative. What made this trip one of the best we have been on in Cuba was the great staff at the hotel, the absolutely beautiful beach with warm water. and the the many activities to keep us entertained. The great layout of the hotel which made it easy to meet people while sitting and enjoying a drink of coffee, juice or whatever. Not to be missed is the great little green room with the coffee/fresh squeezed juice bar off the lobby where you can also fill up your water bottles with purified water for free!We took along our snorkelling gear and went out in a peddalboat but even though the water didn't look rough, we had a hard time steering the boat and keeping it off the rocks in the shallow water so we didn't go in to snorkel but there were many people snorkelling there. They walked/swam out from the shore a little ways. There were also a couple of beach weddings of tourists there which was interesting...for $1000 US you could get the wedding package which included the decorated arch with live greens and flowers, musicians, photographer, exclusive use of Benny More's fancy restaurant (meals were already paid for by guests in the all inclusive plan), golf card limousine to the wedding spot, free drinks (already included in the all inclusive package), not sure what happened for the minister/vows but we felt fortunate to be able to watch the wedding process. We were there for 2 weeks and I didn't want to leave yet as had just gotten onto their sports activity schedule which was a lot of fun and another great way to meet people.. I can't wait to go back.....it was one of the best Cuban holidays we have had an at an believably low price....it's the best travel bargain we have found in all our travels...thanks Westjet!! Only China's Sinorama and Nexus tours out of Vancouver can come close to this deal!
Our room in one of the villas was clean and spacious. Everything worked and the room service was excellent. Food was very good - the buffet abounds in vegetable choices (which we like to eat), but there was also lots of fish, a roast turkey and a roast suckling pig on two nights, as well as pork loin and cooked to order items. Baked deserts are not a Cuban strength but were ok. Several varieties of freshly baked bread, on the other hand, were available every morning. Service in the main dining room is friendly and very attentive. During our stay three a la carte restaurants were open which offer three-course dinners but require reservations two or more days in advance. There are two long beaches as well as several small sandy coves, and a long paved path along the shore in front of this and the neighbouring hotel (Las Brisas). A very informal hotel that offers excellent value.
Visited this resort from April 7 to 14; our 8th trip to Cuba, 2nd to Holguin, 1st to this resort. For those that don't like long reviews, here's a summary: if chipped paint gives you nightmares and an ant in the room makes you faint, stay away. If you like a beautiful beach and can tolerate basic food for a reasonable price – you'll be OK. Now to the full review.A year ago, when we stayed at Brisas next door, I remember passing this unassuming old hotel, seeing a beach filled with Cubans and thinking "what a difference between hotels for foreigners and for local people!". Now, a year later, I ended up staying at this hotel. Well, my first impression was wrong. First of all, this hotel is occupied 80-90% by foreign tourists and 10-20% by Cuban tourists, but local Cubans (that are not staying in the hotel) do use the hotel beach extensively, especially over the weekend. In itself, it's not a problem – Cubans are friendly, and while there is a lot of partying and drinking going on at the beach, I have not seen any trouble. That said, a tide of local population does take over the very few palapases and scarce space in the shade at the beach – the part of beach in front of the hotel seems too crowded sometimes.Secondly, while the Atlantico section (the building fronting the beach) looks depressing (and Standard Section even more so), this hotel is actually quite large and other sections (e.g., the Villa section) do look nice, so in reality it's more like multiple hotels in one – know which one you are getting into.Here are some tidbits of my experience.Pros.Despite being crowded at times, the beach is absolutely fabulous, especially if you are traveling with kids. No waives, safe ocean bottom, warm water of unbelievable colours. The beach outweighs all the cons for me.Over the last decade, I've stayed in Cuban hotels from 2.5 to 4.5 stars, but the wait staff at the main buffet here has been the best I've seen in Cuba or elsewhere in the Caribbean. Attentive, very responsive and helpful. Yes, I left a small tip after every service, but this did not seem to make a huge difference in other resorts, here it did.Free water sport (paddle boats etc), free gym.Rooms at Atlantico section were very basic, but the sheets were clean, the maids were attentive to our requests, no complains. Few mosquitoes.There is A LOT of bars on this resort – they are everywhere so you won't be thirsty.The hotel was half-empty, so there were no lineups, plenty of loungers at the pool (beach is another story).The hotel is doing some minor renovations without any disturbance to the tourists (new railings, cabana, some renovations in the Standard section), making it more inviting and pretty. The food variety was at par or above other 3-star hotels we stayed in.Cons.People that go on vacation to take pictures of broken steps, cracked doors and leaky toilets, will have a blast at this hotel, there are plenty of repairs in waiting.Unlike variety, the food quality was bad. Personal preferences aside (e.g., soups were way too salty for us), I have bad suspicions around freshness, cleanliness and basic culinary skills of some cooking staff at the buffets. Some food stations are worked by young and seemingly inexperienced chefs-in-training; on occasion meat served was clearly raw; the stench near the meet cooking station was very unpleasant to say the least. All our family was sick for a few days, despite being extra careful of what we eat. The pool does not appear to be properly cleaned. My son got ear infection, we suspect from swimming in the pool. I have not seen people throwing anything in the pool, but did see local kid urinating next to the pool. My advice – avoid the pool altogether, swim in the ocean.It seems that the biggest issue with this resort is consistency. One room may be a dump and the next one is pretty good. One room has old key-based safe, another – keyless safe. One day pina colada is white and contains all required ingredients, next day – it's transparent like lemonade. No wonder the reviews for the resort vary significantly, they depend on individual experiences. Paying for safe in "all-inclusive" – my personal pet peeve.Beach lounger stacking – I've never seen anything like it. The moment a person leaves the beach, the beach staff takes their lounger and stacks it up, so there are no loungers freely sitting at the beach. Another person comes, staff takes the lounger they just stacked up a minute ago, carries it back to the beach, wipes off invisible sand and looks for a tip. What a racketeering… There is no bottled water provided, not a single one. Either refill or buy at the store. Most rooms at Atlantico section don't have balconies (looks like they existed before, but rooms were extended and took over the balconies), so drying wet clothing is an issue.Watch your steps. There are gaps, broken concrete and high steps in the walkways and stairs.The small artisan market next door is now closed for construction and will be closed for a while."No smoking" signs are everywhere, but so are heavy smokers; complete ignorance, foyer is filled with smoke.WiFi is horrible. If you buy a 1-hr card and plan to use it multiple times, make sure you are logging out properly after each session otherwise you will lose your balance. The instructions on how to logout in Cuba are available on the internet. Note that same card works at Holguin airport as well.Bottom line. When I was at the resort, I was pretty sure I won't be back, especially when kids got sick. But now, a month later, in retrospect I think that it's actually not that bad for a 3 star resort and for the right price I won't mind coming back to this resort. Won't be swimming in the pool for sure though.
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
- Hotel transfers for packages with WestJet to USA (with exception to Honolulu)
- Hotel transfers for packages to Europe
- Items of a personal nature
- Buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
- A la carte dining w/reservations
- Unlimited Domestic beer and drinks (10am-11pm)
- Pedal boats
- 1 Introductory scuba diving lesson at pool per stay
- Daytime tennis
- Use of bicycles
- Exercise room
- Games room
- Pool table
- Daily activities
- Nightly entertainment
- Hotel complex is composed of 4 sections; the Standard section (Club Amigo Guardalavaca - Guest rooms have recently been refurbished), the Villa section (Club Amigo Guardalavaca Village), the Bungalow section, and the Tropical section.
- 3 buffet restaurants
- 3 a la carte restaurants: International, Italian & Cuban (reservations required by 10am same day, dress code in effect)
- 6 bars including swim-up pool bar
- Snack bars
- 4 outdoor pools
- Kids pool
- Sauna (fee)
- 2 tennis courts (not lit)
- Gift shops
- Fitness facilities
- Scuba diving on-site (fee)
- A range of non-motorized watersports
- Beauty salon
- Massage services (fee)
- Laundry service (fee)
- Medical serives (fee)
- Internet access (fee)
- Car rental (fee)
- Disco (fee)
- 2 single beds or 1 double bed
- Cable/Satellite TV
- In-room safe (fee)
- Bathroom with shower only - 220V converter & adaptor required
- Balcony with garden view
- Max occupancy 3 persons
- Same as above but recently built and more spacious
- Two 3/4 beds
- Bathrooms with tub and shower
- Located in the villa section
- Max occupancy 2 adults & 2 children
- Same as Hotel Rooms but with 2 twin beds
- Located in the building closest to the beach
- Exclusive to Sunquest Vacations bookings
For the Kids - Kids 4-12 enjoy supervised activities daily at the Kids' Club, Kids' pool and Playground. Babysitting service. (fee)
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
Club Amigo GuardalavacaHolguin,Cuba
- Hotel Contacts
- Extra Info
Playa Guardalavaca, 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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