Club Amigo Caracol
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Travel Blogs from Playa Santa Lucia
Camagüey is the third largest city in Cuba. It mainly relies of agriculture; sugar and cattle. It's a quiet town but we spend three days here visiting artists, ballet companies, the local produce market and a cattle farm.
It is unusual in that the old city layout resembles a real maze, ...
Today we start our traverse of the island, passing the village of El Cobre to visit the shrine of Our Lady of Charity, then continue through the lush green countryside to the town of Bayamo, where we'll have lunch and then take a horse and carriage ride and visit the workshop where these unique carriages are still made.
Here is an interesting comment is on standard of living in Cuba. ...
... explore the Melia, it's not as nice as the Havana one but streets better than Trinidad or Camaguey. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city in Cuba and was at one time the capital. It has a population of over 1 million (Havana is 3 million). From the roof top bar we can hear the sounds of music coming from a sound system near the bus station. We are too tired to walk out there. Maybe tomorrow. We have dinner and retire. I have a very bad neck ache from all this bus ...
... good English, better than Ely's, who is translating what he says into Russian. He says he loves Australian music and plays us Men at Work and INXS on his phone. It is incredibly hot, well into the 30s and humid so feels hotter. After an hour or so we go to find our hotel, it is only accessible by pedestrian street so the bicyclists take our suitcases from the bus to just outside the hotel. We are in the Gran Hotel, which us apparently the best in Camaguey. It ...
... to work with him.
Across the street from the school is the home of Juanita where we were warmly welcomed. Wood construction with a thatched roof and concrete floors, Juanita’s home was a stark contrast to the Vincente family home near Santiago we had visited earlier in the week, which was much more modern. But what Juanita lacks in creature comforts, she more than makes up for in agricultural savvy. Numerous varieties of fruit ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
- Continental Breakfast
- Swimming pool
- Wheelchair accessibility
- Fitness/Health center
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Historical Traveler Reviews Club Amigo Caracol Playa Santa Lucia
While the resort, food and drink were great. It was the Entertainment Staff that were outstanding and made the trip most memorable.. Yudelkis, Leo, Douglas, Yuessef (?? spelling) Selhma and lets not forget Omar the dj were some of the nicest people I've met anywhere in the world.... I highly recommend this resort and the area in general...
Loved the hotel hate cuba
I loved the hotel the people are very friendly the food isn't to bad made lots of friends bring your own mug for the drinks and bring an alarm clock that takes batteries i would love to go back to this hotel but there was a few major problems at the airport I,m a 25 year old male feel free to contact me with your questions i will get back to you. Cheersfirstname.lastname@example.org
I've travelled extensively in the Carribean, usually shelling out the money for the best, why not? Five star all the way, and never the same place twice. This year (2004) my friends booked the trip. Cuba. I wasn't keen. The Club Amigo Caracol, 3.5 star, some reviews only 3 star, I wasn't expecting much, but willing to go along with the majority. It was the most amazing vacation I've ever had in my life. I fell in love with the Cuban people and the culture. The resort isn't anything to rave about. The beach is awesome, the rooms are a little 70's, but clean. There's only one bar, one pool, one hot tub, one restaurant. The food isn't anything special, but enough to get by. It didn't matter. The staff, especially the Anamacion (entertainment) staff, were beyond description. They poured their hearts and emotions into the shows every night with results worthy of a broadway stage. The dancing was incredible. They took us out every night, off the resort, on the resort. Played games with us all day long. There wasn't a dry eye on that bus the day we left. We've booked already for March 2005, two weeks this time. We have to travel all the way to Montreal this year to catch a flight, I'd travel further if I had to. I can't wait to see my friends. We've been corresponding since the spring. Yes, it's a communist country, but the lack of Western influence has somehow left behind a people without material tendencies and an inate sense of honesty, genuineness and love of the basics of life that you cannot help but love them for. If you get the chance to visit any of the resorts in Santa Lucia, go, it's worth it. I am happy to discuss my experience further with anyone wishing to know more.
4 middle-aged, winter-weay gals decided to take a chance on a very cheap "All inclusive" holiday at Club Caracol, after reading several very positive reviews from Ottawa and Hfx., on Go Travel Direct's site. $728.00 total, and it was marvelous. Our rooms were ideally located, at 1051 and 1053, just yards from the beach and beach bar,and near the outside showers. Swimming was A-1, and boats and most activities daily were free, plus the excursions were reasonably priced and very well organized. Food was fine and drinks never-ending. The Animacion group was fabulous, and their floor shows each night were amazingly profession. But it was the staff who made the trip! From Wilmer who groomed our beach and cut us a cocoanut each day, to the waiters like Ivan who spoiled us rotten at every meal,to our genteel and gracious maid, Rosa, who went wayyyy beyond the norm and decorated our rooms daily with fresh flowers and artistically folded towels on our beds, to the older gardener who repaid our small gifts with a handful of fresh flowers and a kiss on the cheek. "All Inclusive" does not mean you cannot tip your waiter/bartender once a day, your maid a $ each a.m., the gardner a pk. of Canadian cigs or a BIc lighter, etc. We have so much and they have so little: do not be afraid to show them our well-known Canadian generosity and kindness.A new facecloth, a bath sponge, soap or small shampoos, tooth paste,nail clippers, gel pens and ink pens, barretts and hairclips, hacky-sacks or skipping ropes,inexpensive dolls or balls from a $$ Store, sox or new undies for toddlers,flip flops, etc. All so common for us, so precious to many of them. And leave your toileties behind when you return. Leaving gifts does not make you a target for begggers or unwanted companionship: these humble, polite and unassuming people stay in the background waiting to be beckoned forward for a small gift.
I have not seen a review for the Amigo Caracol and wonder why? We have visited each of the locations at Playa Santa Lucia and they are all very good. The cudos for each of those are well deserved but so should Caracol be applauded. The entire staff, from the gardeners to front desk and top management are excellent. All are genuinely friendly and helpful. Accomodation is good and should a problem arise it is handled well and in good time. The food is good with an adequate selection. The resort is located right on the beach and the enthusiastic entertainment staff can always keep you busy and having fun. Or, you can relax and enjoy the hospitality of the great bar staff,either at the beach or by the pool. We visited again in Jan/Feb.'04 and enjoyed every minute of the trip..One visit to Playa Santa Lucia and you will want to return.
My husband and I spent the first week of March at this resort. We booked with Go Travel Direct from Ottawa and have nothing but praise for the company and any of the reps we dealt with. Everything went smoothly (except for the delay because the plane had a problem with the weather radar, but hey, those things happen). We have traveled to Cuba and other islands before, and stayed at 4&5 star resorts such as Sandals, Breezes and Club Med. This was our first experience at a 3 star, and frankly, we were not disappointed. The bus ride from the airport is approx 80 minutes. You can enjoy a cold Cristal for $1.50 on the bus, or some cold water for $1.00 and it does have a washroom. Youll see a lot of farms and small villages on the way.I had requested a 2nd floor room overlooking the ocean, and we got exactly that. We were a few steps from the beach!The staff is helpful and friendly, and they remember you after their first dealing with you. The service in the restaurant was fabulous, and our maid kept our room spotless. She left us nice notes to thank us for the gifts we left her, and of course decorated our bed with swans/hearts etc. The animation staff will spend as much time with you as you want. If you want to be involved in activities with them, they'll welcome you. You can play darts, volleyball, take dance or Spanish lessons, aerobics in the pool, stretching etc.. The front desk staff are fast and efficient at check in, and willing to help if you have a problem during your stay. When we arrived, the animation staff was in the lobby singing and dancing to welcome us. A nice touch. If brining gifts for them, please remember that paper products are difficult to find in Cuba, so if you can bring coloring books and crayons, or reading materiel for children, as well as some candy, the staff with kids will be very grateful. Also, feminine hygiene products are difficult to get, so please leave behind anything you dont use.While we were there, we had incredible winds everyday, therefore water sports weren't available. Although this area usually has a steady breeze, this was unbelievable. The locals kept commenting that this was very rare. It was the first time in all our travels that we never swam in the ocean! We did sit on the beach for a couple of hours on our first day, but finally had to leave because the wind was blowing sand everywhere, and if the sun went down, it got chilly! There appeared to be a lot of beach chairs, and a number of palaps for shade. We always take a catamaran cruise, and we were canceled both times that we booked.We did take a horse and buggy to Coco beach (12.00 US return). This beach is a must see. A beautiful restaurant serving lobster, chicken, fish and cold beer, and of course that wonderful Cuban ice cream awaits you, as well as a beach that resembles a postcard. Our driver was from Coco beach, and gave us a tour of his house, where we met his wife and children. They will offer to cook you lunch, usually lobster or chicken if you are so inclined, for about 12.00 US.We also took the organized tour of Camaguey, which included a visit to the rum factory, cigar factory, pottery studio, lunch and also a visit to a music house where a wonderful band entertained us. You can never tire of Cuban music. We enjoyed Camaguey, and definitely recommend this trip, however, we did see some begging, with young men and older ladies following the tour bus to all our locations and asking for clothes or money.So, would I go back? In a heartbeat. This resort is quiet, and the food was quite good, although I did hear some folks grumbling about the lack of selection. We never went hungry. Breakfast included eggs, ham, cheese, fresh juice, croissants. Lunch and diner always included lots of fruit, chicken and pork dishes, fish, rice and a great chef who prepares pasta while you wait everyday for both lunch and diner. Always fresh vegetables for salads, including lettuce, cabbage, cucumbers, tomatoes. The desert table is always full, and there is usually ice cream for desert. You can also dine at the beach bar restaurant in the evening, and you can request lobster (extra cost). It is quite nice to sit there at night and it's much more intimate. You should remember however that you are in Cuba, and that they run out of things sometimes. It wasnt unusual to ask for a drink after 6pm and find that they had run out of pina colada mix, or some other liqueur. Never ran out of beer so if youre a beer drinker, youre ok! We didnt see any international drinks while there.The rooms were recently renovated, and have new sparkling tiles in the bedroom, washroom and sitting area, as well as on the balcony. The furniture is old, and the bed is very soft, however, everything is very clean. We did have a couple of days with only lukewarm water, however, as soon as I mentioned it at the front desk, someone fixed it within a couple of hours.The hotel doesnt supply a clock, shampoo or a hairdryer, and you only get 2 little bars of soap, so I suggest you bring your own. ( youll need an adapter or a hair dryer that converts from 110 to 220, both available quite cheap at Walmart by the way). Also, no face cloths, so if thats important to you, bring one from home. We also brought a traveling clothes line which came in handy to dry swimsuits and shorts etc. I didnt see any mosquitoes, and neither of us were bit while there. The sun is extremely hot, and even with sunscreen, you might get a bit of a burn. The pool is great, and usually, we never spend time at the pool, but because of the wind, we spent most of our week there. Always something going on, and music playing, but you can still sit and read quietly.We walked into the town of Santa Lucia, and felt quite safe. Not much to see, other than everyday Cuban life. We observed a man painting his roof, and another fixing his very old American car. We walked into the local storenot much to buy. Most people in Santa Lucia either travel by horse and buggy or on the local bus or bicycle. The people are friendly and wave when you walk by.The clientele here seems to be mostly Italian (both Italian Canadian as well as European), with a few Canadians from Ottawa, Toronto and the Halifax area. There only seemed to be 4 or 5 children while we were there.Santa Lucia is not Varadero. There are only 4 small hotels, and not much night life. Lots to do during the day, and frankly, the beaches are beautiful here. It is truly a beach lovers paradise. Our advice to anyone going here, is give the hotel a day or 2 to grow on you. At first it seems small and bare, but after a few days, you really appreciate the beautiful gardens and the people. They work so hard and such long hours. The man who brings your suitcase to your room, could be the gardener, and the bartender at the beach bar could be the server at the restaurant the next day.So, if you're looking for a nice quiet and relaxing spot, where you can veg on the beach with a book, just steps away from the beach bar, with good food, excellent service at a good price, you won't be disappointed. It's affordable, clean and you are steps from a gorgeous beach. What more could you wish for?Christine
Visited Club Amigo Caracol from January 18 to January 25,2004
Club Caracol is a great place for a beach holiday. Our room was tired looking but the maid did a grand job. We had a great view of the sea.
Food in the buffet restaurant was varied and very good and likewise with the a' la carte restaurant. You won't find better entertainment staff anywhere they were dedicated and it showed, the girls even taught my husband who has 2 left feet to dance the meringue really well which amazed me. The bar area was cozy and friendly,no queues for drinks.
Learn to scuba dive with Alfred in pool and then the sea.We went into the community centre bar/niteclub the locals were great.