Hotel Roc Barlovento

Address: Ave 1ra e/ 10 & 12, Varadero, Cuba | 4 star hotel
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      Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel Roc Barlovento Varadero

      OH dear Oh dear ...lots to still learn here


      My advise if u are considering staying here is DON'T!

      I have just returned from my holiday 15th -30th September starting out my first week at this hotel before being transferred by complaint.

      Only two good things I can say about this hotel is

      Good access for the beach and rooms are for the rest a total disaster

      Mainly starting at the kitchen, the food was contaminated, cold, uncovered, exposed to flies and the same unintersting rubbish everyday! I also observed the staff picking at the food in front of the guests, the so called cooks mopping their sweating foreheads with knapkins over the food yuk! and the general hygeine is very poor.....They clearly still have a lot to learn about customer service.

      The lounge area is dark gloomy and unventilated.

      and the swimming pool is unlit shabby dirty and dangerous. Ok enough said I'm sure you get the picture.......well the rest is up to you but I would certainly give this one a wide berth!

      I don't ask for much but...


      Stayed at the Barlovento (back in April 2004 it was called Iberostar Barlovento)...wonder why its called Villa Barlovento now, did the company Iberostar sell the property? Hmm. Anyhoo, I am the lowest maintainence person you can meet and I expect little. But I was truly disappointed by my stay and visit to Cuba. The resort was 3 star so I did expect it be dated looking but the landscaping was sometimes sad. I know that Cubans have very little but many of the staff were tip oriented. I do understand a little Spanish so I picked up on the snide remarks they made towards guests who don't tip after every drink order. Tipping for the first drink out of kindness makes sense but how can they expect tipping after every single drink order, its an all inclusive property for god's sakes. The food was bland and this is to be expected as they had no import so one cannot expect spices as resources are minimal. But I made do with the bread and pork they serve everynight. The entertainment shows were amazing and that is one saving grace. The weather was kinda cool when we were there. The pool was constantly crowded so we laid out by the beach a lot. I feel that Cuba has a lot of improvement to do in terms of tourism and the resorts have to learn from the others likes Mexico. I have been to countires with very little as well eg Thailand and their resorts are far more superior. To each their own I guess but my experience to Cuba was unpleasant. I wish we had stayed at a different resort, it could have been a different experience for me. However, my one day trip to Havana was much history.

      Happy we chose it


      Trip Adviser helped us choose Barlovento Resort and we're glad we did.

      Hope this helps others. My husband and I took our 15 yr old daughter

      and 18 yr old son for one week at the Barlovento. We found the

      personnel working there genuinely open and friendly. Even though there

      was a language barrier, being greeted with "hola" and a warm smile made

      us feel welcome. It is smaller then some resorts (270 rooms)and no

      building beyond three storeys high. Spanish styling. Every thing is

      kept neat, clean and well maintained. We felt it had a safe, intimate

      atmosphere with alot of character and charm. Sort of like a little

      utopian village. There was a recreational team providing volleyball,

      billiards, pingpong, bingo,dance lessons etc. during the day and stage

      entertainment at night with alot of audience participation. My

      teenagers were free to do their own thing, with me knowing they were

      OK. The night entertainment is amateurish but relaxed and fun. Bar

      beside the stage readily available. We went to the Momba Club" for

      signature's party night and had opportunity to line dance salsa style

      with professional dancers to instruct. Lots of beach chairs and

      umbrellas at the beach and the pools. Good service with no line ups or

      waiting for anything. Short walk through a pleasant garden area to get

      anywhere on the resort. Open air lunch buffet with salsa music playng

      that could drive you a liitle crazy after a while but the excellent

      cappacinno and expresso made up for it. The ocean really is that

      beautiful turquoise colour but 2 days of the week it was 'red

      flagged'(too wavey for swimming) . The drinks were free poured and a

      little inconsistent. One day your Pina Colata was loaded with booze and

      the next one would be alcohol free. I didn't really care and knew if I

      asked they would comply. No constant one dollar tips expected like I

      heard about at other resorts. We just left a tip at the end . We heard

      they are short on soap and toothbrushes so we brought extra with us to

      be left . We took the" Discovery Tour" and saw the more rural areas by

      jeep. Children at the side of the road friendly and waving but also

      asking for your hat or hoping you have candy for them. I wish I had

      been more prepared. Outside the resort expect to pay $1 for a small

      piece of toilet paper and use of bathroom. This starts right at the

      Varadero Airport with uniformed personnel. What a first impression to

      give people! Anyway, the Discovery Tour is a very active day . Good for

      the teenagers. Swimming, horseback riding, boating down a river, see

      the spectacular caves. . Food was generally pretty good but you have to

      be willing to go with the flow. They make chicken, pork and fish well.

      Beef was stringy. Desserts with white sugar very good. Inconsistent

      service. One night your wine glass is filled up after every sip, just

      about and the next night you had to ask for water. We figured out the

      area that the best waitress was working and sat there. My boy had

      double hamburgs for lunch every day and said they were excellent. Watch

      the bird's at lunch if you leave your plate unattended they will get

      it. There are also several stray cats and dogs(very well mannered) My

      daughter adopted them for the week. We had to pay $25 for late check

      out because our bus pick-up on the way home wasn't til 5 pm. Otherwise

      they keep your luggage at the desk and give you the use of a room for

      the afternoon.

      We chose Barlovento because it has the town of Varadero at its front door and we thought our daughter would like the shopping but we just went out once . It's mainly hand crafts which I appreciated more then her. She did get a really cute croqueted swimsuit for only $10. Prices were very reasonable. You can rent a moped for $6 per hrs. A full massage at the beach is only $20.It's in a little shack where you can feel the breeze blowing through and she talks in Spanish to her friend outside through out.

      Alot of Spanish, Italian, Dutch, German language heard from resort guests with some English. We thought this was a good experience for the family. We had 2 rms. Each had 2 large (?48") twin beds. Clean and adequate. The balconies are too narrow but we were very pleased with everything else so no big deal. I did get some kind of bug bites, probably mosquitoe. Small fridge with bottled water in rooms. Housekeeper's will wake you up in the morning yelling back and forth to each other . "Alina, Alina" I will always remember that name. A room safe will cost $16 per wk .We had been told it was included. Not so. Again no biggy. We would go back to this resort but probably won't cause there's too many other places to explore. Wishing you a great vacation.

      Barlovento-Pleasure !


      We have spend 2 weeks of our holiday at the Barlovento-Hotel (Iberostar-Hotel) at Varadero/Cuba. The food at the restaurant-buffet was excellent, same at the beach-restaurant. The Cuban-creolish-reaurant was good, the mexican-restaurant has nothing to do with mexican- food, not accetable! Be shure you get rooms at the or floor, at the floor are the corridors, the people walk around night and day and you may be disturbed! The choice of rooms are the most important at the Barlovento, the food is very good, the staff very helpful and competent and friendly. The animation team is excellent, for the "Latino-Show" and the "Noche Cubano" Five-Stars ***** !! Very good "Lobby bar" with bartender "Taimy" and her crew, Mochitos and Caipirinhas at its best !! The beach is o.k., some noise from the Villa Tortuga next right side (Disco every day from 12-15 p.m.) We enjoyed our stay and can recommend this place for a great Varadero-holidays. We will say thansk to the whole crew at this wonderplace ! Claus u. Gala

      Fabulous value, fabulous place to stay


      Anyone thinking of staying here should do so...the food was excellent!

      The staff were incredibly friendly and warm. It's right on the beach.

      Best of all, it's closer to the entrance of the Varadero strip than most hotels, so you can enjoy solitude without being too far from the action "downtown". Has a great little coffee place just next door. No, it's not a 5 star palace, but, gosh, for a 3andahalf star in Cuba, this is one gem of a hotel. Loved it!

      Highly Recommended


      Great Value for the price. Staff was friendly and accomodating. Great location. You just walk out the front door and are within blocks of markets, restaurants, bars, shops, etc. Beach is great. Lots of sun shelters and loungers available. Beautiful Beach that you can walk for kilometers on. Very safe place. Rooms are clean and adequate. Our had 2 doubles. Mini Fridge in your room is convenient. Bars are located well but could use a bar closer to the beach. Food was great and plentiful.

      Lots of fish and seafood offered. Wonderful desserts. I would not recommend the beef dishes. We found these tough. The hambugers were excellent though. Expresso bars were also located at every bar serving great Cuban coffee. Enjoyed the resort at what they offered. Will return

      Highly recomendable


      excelent food,nice staff,good rates.

      Great location, good food


      Feb-Mar 2003 2 weks.this hotel has a great location, city at front door. Food was plentiful and choices were good, and it was recognizable, been to other places where you were not sure what was on your plate! Animation team excellent, nightly shows for the most part were way above average. no problem getting towels or beach chairs, drinks of all kinds. Beach great, clean. Water beautiful Only downside was the rooms, they were not exactly top notch, but they are renovating, no hot water for the first day, but was soon put right when we complained about it thru the Signature rep who ws very helpful. Hoping to go again 2004 with 2 more friends tagging along. Can't wait roll on Feb. 2004. For 1st timers to Cuba, BRING THE BUG SPRAY. Found the mosquitoes to be very vicious, small but awful, and that's saying something coming from the mosie capital of Canada.. . . . Anne & Tom Wpg.

      8th Great Visit


      Just returned from my 8th visit to this very pleasant hotel. Those many of us who return 1 or 2 times each year continue to enjoy this "hidden gem" it is under rated at 3 stars and is closer to the Iberostar rating of 4 stars. Hotel has all services ,food,drinks of higher rated hotels.It is popular with international tourists.Here in Canada it is not promoted by agents who like to push the 5 star hotels,but you will rarely see this hotel discounted and it is at full capacity for most of the year.The hotel is well situated with the beach at the back door and the Town at the front door making it ideal for visitors who want to see the town with ease by foot or bus,taxi,etc. Can't wait to go back.

      Friendly service


      Nice enough hotel is only a 3 star so you cannot expect luxury.Rooms are a little small, decks are narrow, just for stepping on to not lounging on.Water pressure is unfortunaltely almost nil and water only warm. Restaurant seemed to serve good buffet, great desserts, and service was efficient and friendly. Beach bar & restaurant served nice lunch with nice outdoor patio eating area. Beach nice and not too far from hotel. Good hotel if you do not spend much time in room and you get package on sale. Location good.

      TripAdvisor Reviews Hotel Roc Barlovento Varadero

      3.50 of 5 stars Very Good

      Travel Blogs from Varadero

      Fun in Varadero

      A travel blog entry by wanderlizzy on Dec 24, 2014

      1 comment, 18 photos

      ... choices are mind boggling and the staff are truly wonderful, always happy no matter what. There are an absolute array of different nationalities here. We've enjoyed many great conversations with fellow Brits, Argentinians, Canadians.

      The Canadians are definitely the majority, they come to escape their cold winters and mainly enjoy the all-inclusive lifestyle without venturing into the 'Real Cuba' like we have. ...

      The adopted son, called Che

      A travel blog entry by wanderlizzy on Dec 20, 2014

      1 comment, 9 photos

      ... Taxi to an impending Police speed patrol, but the vision of at least 500 head of White large horned Steers coming towards us on the opposite carriageway with an entourage of Gauchos very reminiscent of Rawhide (for those of you who remember that Cowboy programme and the hero, Rowdy Yates from the early 60s) it was just an unbelievable thing to see. I still have thoughts that cattle herding on this scale just couldnt happen on any motorway in England, there isnt enough room!


      Resort Dogs and Cats end up Dead!

      A travel blog entry by on Nov 21, 2014

      2 photos

      ... dog would need a vet check, a rabies vaccine and then a quarantine for 40 days. Emma who wanted to adopt Angel was going home and her friend would be coming a week after I left to make the arrangements for Angel. I gladly offered to watch over her for the week and would then find someone else to for the week that I was gone. We went for walks together and I noticed that when some male staff approached, she would run off and then 5 minutes later she would ...

      Snorkelling in Varadero

      A travel blog entry by katie.thorpe on Nov 13, 2014

      1 comment, 7 photos

      We had to wake up early this morning to go snorkelling. The bus was supposed to meet met us at about 8:30 but typical Cuba time, it arrived closer to 9, from there we had about a 20min ride to the beach. We got briefed then received all our gear that we needed to do the swim. Katie was very nervous at this point as she's not very much of a water person, but a I have to say I'm proud of her as she did it with a little bit of hesitation at first but loosened up at the end. I think ...

      Hemingway's Finca La Vigia

      A travel blog entry by nanseaj on Jan 28, 2013

      12 photos

      ... Francisco de Paula is La Vigia "The Lookout", Hemingway's home in Cuba. The house sits on a hill with a view back to Havana, it is a lovely location and the house, built in 1886, has an open floor plan and is very comfortably furnished. It is here that two of Hemingway's most celebrated novels were written, For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea. His boat, the Pilar, is also housed on the property in a ...