We stayed in The Level which was supposed to be the premium room and amenities.
I think we were below sea level.
The resort did not have any Pina Coladas! The one drink that everyone goes to a Hotel for.
The buffet was extremely limited, same thing every day, no variation at all.
The restaurants that were reservations only, were no better.
In fact, for the "Gormet" restaurant the menu shown was not the menu.
The substitutes were as follows:
Beef to Pork
Shrimp to Pork
Pumpkin soup to Cream of Mushroom.
There was no cream or mushrooms, just a broth.
Chicken breast was dark meat chicken.
The special Level Lounge only had small ham sandwiches to eat with a few desserts.
The coffee in the resort was hot water with some flavor.
They use the cheapest coffee available called Turquino, they would be better off with dirt.
Bring your own toilet paper, I think they use an 80 grit sand paper.
Same for the travel pack of tissues they give.
There is no waitress service around the pool.
The one thing they have going for them is that the Staff is very nice and accommodating when possible.
Pick another resort.
The one thing to remember, after all it is Cuba.
Keep your expectations low.
Aug 06, 2022
It’s Cuba, it’s hard to be outside of a resort and Melia international is probably the best option in Varadero. If you go I suggest going as The Level and if you do so, go to the second floor of the pool bar and look for Kenia. She makes the best cocktails in the entire resort!! Enjoy you vacations :)
Mixture of Good and Bad
Aug 06, 2022
Just arrived back from 2 weeks at the hotel. My honest opinion. We did not stay Level.
Good points: Room is huge, superb bathroom facilities, free safe, cleaned daily, good balcony, plenty of storage for clothes, good view even at the back of the hotel. Beach excellent, clean, well manned, beach bar not too far away, plenty of sunbeds. Pool huge, plenty of sunbeds, entertainment daily if you want to participate. Evening entertainment - usually a singer in the Blue Bar 8-9 then over to the Pool bar for entertainment till about 11.30. Lots of bars to choose from as hotel is very big, enormous measures of alcohol!! Food: breakfast was good, fresh fish/prawns available most days at lunch/dinner. Weather was amazing. Good trips to Havana & Catamaran trip was really good! Varadero was walkable, only about 20 minutes.
Bad points: Room sometimes the towels were not changed daily, but would deliver later in the day if left short, our beds were only changed once. Noise from Caberet Continental (next door) Weds-Sun till 3/4 am sometimes felt like room was vibrating. Pool, never seen it cleaned & there were lots of things floating in it ??. No children's entertainment (we didn't need any, so didn't affect us, as we were kid free). Food was very monotonous & the buffet could be carnage, pork very much the meat of prominence, craved a decent salad!! A la carte restaurants were better but we had various degrees of good/bad. Drinks very hit & miss and cocktail choice was very limited. A cocktail menu on paper is really needed!! WiFi is provided, but continuously logs you on/off, Android users stores your log in details, but Apple users had to keep typing in user name & password details, a real pain when you are logged out quickly!
Overall a good holiday. Knew before we travelled that Cuba has limitations because of shortages, as we have visited to Cayos previously.
Currency: you can use, US & Canadian dollars, Euros & £Sterling. But..... the real change since Covid is that they more readily want credit card payments. Rum/cigar purchase had to be done via credit cash, no cash accepted at all! Only the smaller bars/restaurants accept currency & they will take most currencies!!
We travelled as a party of 2 families so 9 in total. About half of us experienced tummy troubles during the holiday, could have been heat/change of food/drink as we were all bad at different times so am not blaming the food. I suspect it was the pool as there were some very dubious things floating in it and we never saw it cleaned, but can't be 100% sure.
Went to Varadero 60 for a meal out & it was superb, highly recommended!!
Aug 05, 2022
We stayed in Melia Intrnacional Varadero for 11 days. Hotel already looks worn out from what I expected for a "pretty new hotel".
****My heart aches for Cuban people so this is only constructive criticism for the service at some sections****:
Yadira (6th floor) was our maid and was really nice.
Last day we got transferred to another room due to the door issues at ours. New room that we were transferred to smelled and had mold on pillowcase/ shower curtain and air-conditioning fan looked like it was never cleaned.
Most of the staff very doing their best. At times at buffets they seemed understaffed but when it was not too busy they came around often and quickly. I do not mind shortages of drinks/vegetables and completely understand the situation the country is in.
However, Spanish speaking customers should not be given advantage just because of the language. If I am standing in line at the reception to have key card magnetized again, they just cut in and reception clerk pretends as if I don't exist.
The WORST service was definitely at the RED bar (we never went to the BLUE). Red bar staff took forever, even when you walk over they talk and ignore you. Once we were the only ones on the patio. They didn't walk over for 20 min. At night when entertainment girl comes over she gets service, and then gets water and alcohol bottle and they walk over to staff room, ignoring the fact that you've been there for 10min prior. Service needs to improve if you want non Spanish speaking customers to continue coming.
Entertainment crew at the beach and pool were AMAZING! There was always something for everyone.
Beach is absolutely beautiful!
WARNING! Please read!
Aug 05, 2022
I could say many things about the facilities, supplies, services, etc. None of that is essential once you learn that your 3-year-old picked up Campylobacter and Cholera bacteria in this hotel last week.
He started showing symptoms at the airport while waiting for our flight home. He was very sick during this week.
We were cautious with what food we chose and always gave him bottled water. Maybe it was the pool or some spoiled food. My wife and I also had some stomach problems, and another family of friends experienced similar symptoms.
If you're travelling with small children, please be careful. I'd even consider changing plans. I never like to provide bad reviews, but this is a critical situation, and I don't want anybody to go through the same as we went this week.