Paradisus Rio de Oro
- What's Included
- All Inclusive Features
Have just returned from a 2 week holiday and did not want to come home!! The hotel is itself a little tired but that can be overlooked with the setting and location. We went there as part of my husbands 60th birthday celebrations. We were initially booked into a junior suite which was in a great location-far enough away from the main lobby so very quiet but had a couple of issues with the bathroom on day 2 so we spoke to Customer Relations and they upgraded us to a Garden Bungalow.That too was in a lovely location overlooking a grassy area with dozens of palm trees along with a hammock. We had the bonus of having an outside shower- gorgeous.The staff are lovely and so friendly, we could always have a laugh with them especially my husband with the ladies!! The cocktails are amazing especially the mojitos and they must have been popular as the bar ran out of mint on a few occasions.The main restaurant was average but certain foods were cooked to order so were hot-my favourite being the flambéd fruit.We ate in the al a carte restuarants both weeks,the Japanese being the favourite,El Patio and the Mediterranean a close 2nd but not so fussed with the Cuban.We used the Spa for a massage-great location,very relaxing.We went on two trips- Inside Cuba plus which includes a ride on an old train,a visit to a cigar factory and several other places of interest. The other was the catamaran to Paradise Island,what a brilliant day, first there was snorkelling then the island stop off-never seen such golden sand and turquoise sea.The snorkelling is great just off shore from the hotel if you head round so you are about adjacent with the Wedding Pagoda,sea temperature is just right.We did encounter a couple of heavy showers and a few days of clouds but the temperature is so warm it didn't spoil things.We did get a lot of bites in the evening despite using mozzie spray as did a lot of guests,the grounds were sprayed on a few occasions though.We asked to have a look at the Royal Service part of the hotel,all looked very nice and very quiet but it would have put approximately another £1500 on the cost of the holiday (price of another 3* holiday) More than happy with what we had.Would definitely return to this hotel.
Rio de OroRooms: Very poor standard. How this area of the resort has been classified as 5 star is a complete travesty, by either Cuba or the tour operator (ours was Thomas cook) the decor was extremely poor and dated and in many areas, in disrepair. A fuse box for example right in the center of the wall as you walk into your apartment is not what I expect from a 5 star resort. Very tired furniture, almost museum-like. After being in our room for a matter of minutes we knew we could not stay. My wife, after reading many reviews knew there was a royal service (upgrade) we had to shell out over £1000 to upgrade, which left a very sour taste in our mouths and lead to us raising a complaint with our tour operator there and then. Rooms RS: Good standard is how I would describe them. Well equipped, coffee machine, ghetto blaster with USB, digital clock with iPhone lightning connection, semi-comfortable furniture. Beds are amazing (albeit 2 x beds put together) walk in wardrobe. Excellent bathroom with outside shower. Yes, outside. Amazing experience. Okay, mini bar, the staff that restock will regularly ask what you would like which is a nice touch, and the butler service allows you to request any liquor and or premium spirits. We had a bottle of wine and ice brought to our room daily. No snacks, however. Resort // Bugs and more: The resort is fine. Well kept, tidy and in most cases beautiful. We found out that the resort was hit by a devastating hurricane some years ago and devastated the resort. There are many signs of this throughout the resort. However, in the most part, it is fine. Please be advised that you may have issues with crabs. We took a nice walk around the resort and needed to detour on several occasions due to swarms of tiny crabs. We encountered many full-size crabs throughout the resort also. We had one in our outside shower at the royal service.Please do not let this put you off. There is a huge effort made to keep the resort feeling as lush and organic as possible which is a plus, however it does mean you will encounter wildlife and other critters. We were bitten many times by the dreaded mosquito's and only found out half way through our stay that the resort could be sprayed. This happened once during our stay and in my opinion, does not happen anywhere near enough. Other resorts we have stayed at spray daily. Resort RS: The resort at the Royal service is excellent. The same attention to tidiness and keeping the gardens nice is evident. Having a drink at the bar while looking out over the bay is breathtaking. Pools: The pool at the main hotel is, not great. Again, the feeling of age and dilapidation is evident all around the pools tiling and grouting. The surrounding area is fine, with a nice view out to sea. The swim up bar is okay, however, we were not at all happy with the water cooler type plastic cups you are given for drinks. We have stayed at many Caribbean adult only 5 star resorts and can say without hesitation that this is not acceptable. I want to feel a level of luxury, not one of a 4 star package holiday. This was also felt when using the sun loungers and beds. Ripped and battered cushions, again is not good enough. We also do not like the generic blue sun beds, we prefer a more refined experience. The pool toilets were absolutely dreadful, very poorly kept, dirty and there were no means of drying your hands after washing them. We did, however, enjoy our time at the main pool Pools RS: The pools at the Royal Service were, in my opinion, incredible. 3 x infinity pools all on different layers which look out over the bay were simply amazing. If like me you want to use the pool to cool down, have a read or a beer, they're great. There is supposed to be a waiter service around the pool, however, this was very poor compared to other places too. Far too infrequent for my liking. However, the normal plastic cups had on other holidays were had at the Royal Service. Beach: The beach at the main hotel is lovely, however, the walk down, again you encounter many reminders of the Hurricane and could be put off going. There are remains of pillars in the sea that I can only assume were part of a jetty of sorts was a big eyesore. We did not spend any time at this beach. When we arrived at the resort we walked to the beach bar and ordered a drink. This was the first encounter of the water cooler plastic cups and was immediately put off. The beach bar area is in quite a dilapidated state, and in my opinion, should be closed until properly repaired. Beach RS: Wow. The private feeling small beach available to the Royal service guests was simply breathtaking. Very quaint, lush, and untouched was the sense. It is simply stunning. The waiter operating the small bar was fantastic. The water is crystal clear and exceptional for snorkelling. Bars: The bars are fine. Nothing great, nothing too bad either. The only thing to note is that there is a distinct feel of low staff. This is felt all over the resort. there is a feeling of large cutbacks, The lack of staff in literally every area of the resort is a huge letdown. The main bar has a waiter service, which was okay. No branded liquors and spirits (except for the locally sourced - Rum is amazing) We are used to a number of bars being at a resort like this and were somewhat disappointed that there was only 1 at the main hotel, and at the Royal Service. Service: We witnessed both excellent service and poor service. On the whole, it is excellent, however, is let down, again by staffing numbers mainly. We met some really nice waiters and waitresses. Restaurants: We ate at the International, Japanese, Mediterranean, and the Ala cart Royal service restaurant. We were advised not to eat at the Cuban restaurant because it was open air and we would get bit. The restaurants are good, and the meals are of a higher standard. The Royal service restaurant was really good with a very attentive sommelier (Wine waiter)Food: The food is of a good to an excellent standard and I can honestly say we did not eat a bad meal. At times we wanted a fillet steak, however, the only version of this across all restaurants was classed as grilled beef. It was very nice, however, we were unsure as to what cut it was. Buffet: We ate here for breakfast and lunch a number of times, and have to say we really enjoyed it. There are excellent varieties for both breakfast and lunch, with numerous chefs on hand to cook you fresh fish, meats, pasta. pizzas, eggs etc. The only negative thing about the buffet is that it is open air and does have a number of birds flying around, they land on newly vacated tables and would often land near the food areas. This did not put us off, and we both had zero issues with food related illnesses. Room service: Room service is not bad, however, is not great either compared to other places. The menu is very limited and the time it takes for your orders borders on the longer side. The food again is a good standard and drinks etc are covered. Generic paper napkins are provided with each order, again I would expect a proper napkin from a 5-star resort. We were advised by returning guests (At the Royal Service) that we could ask for anything and they would provide it. I asked for a Pizza (Yes not on the menu) and this was provided.Maids: The maids are great and do a good job to keep the place clean. The beds were always very well made, and the towel creations were always a welcome addition to our day (Although do get slightly tedious after a while) The only gripe I had of the maids, was upon returning to our room one day I walked in on the maid making the bed. She apologised straight away because she had thrown the pillows onto the floor. I did not appreciate the pillows being on the floor. But I guess this would happen more than I would care to believe. WiFi: I can not emphasise this enough. The most ridiculous and frustrating part of our stay was with the awful WiFi. Firstly, at the main hotel, there is a charge (Free at the Royal Service) everytime you use it. You need to collect a scratch card from the reception and sign for each card. You then go into your device's WiFi settings and enter the code from the card. Sounds simple right? Well, no. This seldom works which creates frustration. The cards are for 30 minutes which again is horrendous. I needed to watch a sporting event (No sports bar or area to watch sports) which lasted for 3+ hours. I was borderline stressed at the end. On the whole, this is the worst WiFi I have ever used at any destination I have ever been. Phone boxes in the UK offer better WiFi than these. How they can charge is outlandish. Transportation: This was excellent. The resort is very large and there may be a good walk from your room to, say a restaurant or the beach. You can call for a resort cab, which is a 6 person electric buggy which can take you anywhere on the resort. These were very good. Albeit totally required. Royal service: The Royal Service was in most part very good, there were some very good additions to which we had never seen before, such as they would unpack and pack your case for you. As stated the WiFi is free. The rooms are of a far higher standard than the main hotel. There is what they class as a butler service, which is both amazing in theory, however, is somewhat of a fad. We could request pretty much anything and it would be provided. We asked for bottles of wine and ICE left in our room from 5 pm daily, we had bottles of Rum also. They advertise that they can reserve sun beds, however, this is no longer possible. The best way I could describe this service would be a glorified concierge. Summary:I would like to start by acknowledging that the majority of the above comes across as negative, and although some of it is, I feel it is what I would have wanted to know before booking. Being fully informed is vital when you're paying this much for a holiday. We are pursuing a complaint with our tour operator in an attempt to receive a refund for the cost to upgrade to the royal service. Did we have a good time? Yes, we did, thoroughly. However we had to pay extra to have it, we also lost a day moving rooms.The main resort is not 5 star. It is at best a 4. The rooms at the main resort are among the worst I have ever stayed in.The Royal Service is excellent and IS 5 star. (And is potentially why the resort as a whole is classed as 5 stars) However, if we were faced with the total spend at the point of sale, we would not have chosen here. Which we feel is very unfortunate. We could have gone to an excellence resort (Which is where we like to go) Which we feel is our tour operators responsibility. Other operators, we use (Thompson, Virgin) Both use their own star ratings. Which are often different to the countries rating and provide a more fully informed score so you can be further assured of the standards of the resort. So be warned.
We had our 1st stay in cuba for our honeymoon at paradisus and from start to finish it was a wonderful place to come, on arrival we were met with champagne followed by a brief intro on the resort then to our splendid deluxe junior suite!! The food is generally very good although the Cuban restaurant was a little disappointing, pool and beach both nice and big, bar and lobby, a nice place to unwind along with the spa they have. The best day was an excursion we did which was 4x4 through Thomas cook and took us up in the country and did a wide range of things from speedboating to horseback, meeting a Cuban family and a hilltop view dinner, I would highly recommend this excursion and the resort to newlyweds and couples and will definitely be back in the near future!!!
We have been to Cuba many times since 2000, but had never been to this hotel. We booked the holiday based on the excellent reviews. Many people love this place and quite rightly, however I can only review based on my personal experience and it is probably just down to bad luck. I have waited for two weeks after returning and carefully thought about this review, as I want to be fair to the hotel.This hotel is in a beautiful location. The grounds are stunning with beautifully kept gardens. The hotel has good facilities and the beach is lovely, but could probably do with more shelter from the sun at busy times, however, while we were there it was fine. The rocks in the sea by the hotel are a little daunting at first, but once you find the easiest route into the sea- just to the left of the broken pier- it is fine, and if you walk a little way along the beach it is all sand and no rocks. The snorkelling is superb directly off the beach and lots of fish and the sea is clear and sparkling blue. Beautiful.I spent most of my time in the day snorkelling.We arrived at the hotel and waited for 45 minutes for the room to be cleaned even though it was 4.30 pm. The room was big and exactly as the photo on the Thomas Cook website, but this was not a renovated room. The top cover on the bed was very grubby and I rolled it up and we left it on a chair for the full holiday. It was best not to look too closely behind the toilet and bidet as it didn't look too clean, and under the bed ( my husband looked under here when we were leaving to ensure we hadn't left anything behind) was thick with dust . The first couple of nights I didn't sleep well as I heard rustling behind the upvc boards in the bathroom, but couldn't figure out what it was, and with the noisiest fridge in the world, it was only possible to doze really. The third night, in the middle of the night, I switched the light on, and two lizards were running around the top of the walls in the room. I love animals, but I'm not fussed on snakes or lizards, and the third night was spent watching the lizards to make sure they didn't come too close. I didn't want them hurt at all, but all I got when I reported it to customer services/ reception ( twice!) was that it was a tropical country and they weren't poisonous. Needless to say I slept with one eye open for the rest of the week. They didn't bother my husband though, and he named them Gizzard and Eddie, and they were all best of friends by the time we left!After we had been there a couple of days many preparations were being made for a big private function with many 'dignitaries' staying in the hotel or ones close by. The main pool by the swim up bar was taken over by a stage and tables were put around the pools. The swim up bar, while a small part of it remained open for paying guests was completely covered with glasses, and many sunbeds were removed. The staff were all working to prepare for this big event and while I am sure that it was an honour for the hotel it did impact on our holiday. The restaurant by the pool was closed for two days and there was only a skeleton staff to serve paying guests in the rest of the hotel. It was a very grand, elaborate event lasting two days, and the photos on Facebook look amazing. It needs to be pointed out that paying guests were not allowed access to this event at all and it was purely for the 'dignitaries '. The service before this event was good overall but during and after the event it certainly did slip considerably.We enjoy coffee in the mornings, and as it's near impossible to get more than one cup of coffee at breakfast, we did enjoy coffee at the main bar after breakfast. The last two mornings we went for coffee there and both times were told to take a seat. Both times no coffee appeared, and yes we did tip. We gave up and went to the beach.To top it off, after being there a couple of days, I had severe sickness, that lasted 12 hours but affected me for a couple of days. I have no idea what caused it and not pointing the finger at all as I know it can happen. And no ....I am not claiming for compensation from Thomas Cook or my insurance, as you read about in the papers. My insurance is for emergencies and I accept these things happen, however I did hear of at least two others with the same problem.The entertainment was not very good to be honest. A few of the little Cuban bands playing were ok but otherwise it was poor. Whether this was due to the special event, I don't know, or maybe it's just not to our taste.If you are a fan of Haviannas flip flops they are a good price in the hotel shop compared to the UK. The Hawk and baby hawk used in the restaurant to keep the other birds off the food were fascinating. The food throughout the hotel was ok, but but not as good as other hotels we have stayed in in Cuba. Sorry.I'm sorry to say we were disappointed with our holiday and won't be returning, but don't let this put you off as so many people love the place. It is beautiful, but as I say maybe we were just unlucky this time. I've tried to be fair and given an honest review.
3rd trip back. The entertainment staff need to bring more fresh ideas into resort. Real Cuban music. Otherwise he will shout. It's no children allowed under age 18. Just chill and relax or try water sports
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- Items of a personal nature
- Buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
- 24 hr room service
- Unlimited Domestic beer & select International brand drinks 24 hrs
- House wine w/meals
- In-room mini-bar stocked w/water, soft drinks & beer
- Pedal Boats
- Introductory scuba diving lesson in pool once/person/week
- Use of bicycles
- Exercise room
- Horseback riding nearby (reservations required)
- Dance lessons
- Daily activities
- Nightly entertainment
- 294 rooms in several 16 one & two-storey villas
- 1 buffet restaurant
- 4 a la carte restaurants: Japanese, Mediterranean, Creole and International, dress code & reservations required
- Snack bar
- 5 bars including a Swim-up bar
- Room service 24 hrs
- 1 free-form pool
- 3 tennis courts (3 night-lit)
- Beauty salon
- Massage service (fee)
- Fitness room
- Internet access (fee)
- Dive school
- Car rental
- Laundry service (fee)
- Medical service (fee)
- 1 king or 2 double beds
- Living area
- Cable/Satellite TV
- CD player
- Coffee/tea maker
- In-room safe
- Iron & ironing board
- Full bathroom
- Hairdryer 220V (converter & adaptor required)
- Balcony or terrace
- Max occupancy 3 persons
- Same as the Junior Suites but more spacious
- Located in single-storey villas
- 'Al fresco' - private outdoor showers on a private terrace
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Resort Location Map
Paradisus Rio de OroHolguin,Cuba
- Hotel Contacts
- Extra Info
Playa Esmeralda, Crta Guardalavaca, Holguin 007 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.
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