Tryp Habana Libre
Travel Blogs from Havana
Today was and interesting mix of topics in our ongoing study of Cuban culture. The highlight of the morning was a visit with a local modern dance troupe called MalPaso ("Bad Step" in Spanish). They formed about a year ago, as a fully independent dance company.
This is very unusual in Cuba. Most dance companies are either state owned or …
This day was absolutely packed with memorable experiences. I hardly know where to start, and it would take hours for me to cover it all.
We started by heading across the bay to La Cabana, the fortress built by the Spanish to protect Havana from pirates and the navies of Spain's rivals. The fortress itself is immense, and from its walls …
It was a very early morning this morning. We had an 8.00 AM flight to catch. We had to get up at 4.00 AM to make sure that we caught it. It was tough to get up that early, especially when I got up at 3.30 AM the previous morning. It's worth it, though; today we are going to Havana!
After landing at the airport and clearing customs, we met …
... br> .
We took a taxi home, and went back to our casa particular to wash up and rest until dinner time. Since Alexander was not feeling well, Manfred, Sheila and I went to Le Templete for dinner one block away from Plaza Armas. When we ...
... what used to be – past friendships, romances, arguments, and even fights.
One story had my dad “losing it” (in Spanish – “se siego” – blind rage) when one of his sisters was beaten by her husband, and he defended her. I quickly remembered that look in my old man’s eyes the few occasions I saw him lose his cool. I hadn’t had that image in my head for a very long time.
We heard hardship stories from some ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Tryp Habana Libre Havana
Would definitely recommend...
We stayed here for four days as part of a twin-centre holiday. I would recommend asking for a room on one of the higher floors, the views are incredible of the Malecon and the old quarter.
It was a struggle to find a clean table or any cutlery at breakfast (even arriving pretty early on in the session), but the food selection was great once you did!! Otherwise, the service elsewhere was great and friendly, the room large and clean and the location ideal (I'd recommend the short stroll down to the Hotel Nacional for early evening drinks facing the sea).
Amazing views; Great Cuisine
Breathtaking hotel. We stayed here in July 2004, as part of a twin centre holiday. If you are going to cuba, I highly reccommend that you take a two centre holiday. Havana is cultural, and a must to see but the beaches and real carribbean involve taking a trip to the other side of the island. The most popular resot is valadero but guardalavaca is where we stayed in brisas guradalavaca and thats where you will find the true carribbean. The rooms at havana libre are wonderful, feels like a suite its soo huge! Well equipped with safe, fridge, hairdyer etc. The bed is huge and comfortable. The best thing about this hotel is the views, I can't say of a better hotel for the sights in cuba than this one! We was on the 21st floor and towered above every other building! it is just amazing to watch the hussle and bussle of Havana from above. The second best thing is the restaurants, they have quite a few to choose from, ranging from italians to morrocan style! All there restaurants are themed and most come with live musicans. My favouite is on the 25th floor, comparing it to london restaurants in the same league, its soo cheap! The restaurant has stunning views, live musicians and a very romantic atmophere. You can truly relax here, unlike london nothing is expected of you and there is no snobbyness at all, just pure excellent cuisine! Booked to see tropicana when we were there, great show and meal beforehand was equally fantastic! (watch it cause they might drag you up to dance!) Well if you are taking a holiday here I hope you have a great time! My only advice is not to stay too long, there is a limited amount of things to do while in havana, taking a two centre holiday is the best option, that way you get to see such a contrast of city and beach, your be smiling all year!
Great Hotel in a fantastic location in Havana
My wife and I stayed here for a few days. The hotel was better than I would have otherwise expected. Fantastic restaurants and good 24hr fast food restaurant . Room was spacious, clean and of a good decent standard. Best thing about it was the view. We stayed on the 8th floor and the view of the coastline and city was amazing. Visited the top floor restaurant and disco, which were worth it again for the great food and amazing views. The hotel is centrally located in the vedado district and is close to the Havana University and famous coppelia ice cream bar. The old city is a taxi ride away that should cost you no more than $4. I would highly recommend this hotel to everyone visiting havana.
Over rated ** only
? I do not have a lot to say! Just do not stay at thia hotal, Theres a lot better in the old town, March 04
Lovely hotel. great views. June 2003
The views from the hotel are fantastic if you are fortunate to get a room above the 20th floor.The nightclub on the top floor had some good entertainment and they would open the roof at midnight (probably spoiled a nice surprise for a few people there).Food was adequate and the pool was of sufficient size but did sometimes struggle to secure a sunbed.The room was spacious, had a balcony and the bathroom was very nice and clean.
Big rooms, little service
Huge rooms have been renovated nicely. Hotel is situated in vibrant part of town.
However, at check-in, the clerk tried to tell us we had not pre-paid for our rooms, which we had. He insisted that we pay him. We weren't falling for that and after much debate, he happened to find that we had indeed paid for the rooms. And this guy was the front desk manager!
Service at the lobby bar was pathetic. Breakfast buffet was very bad.
Overall, a nice place to stay. But watch out for the front desk staff.
And eat elsewhere.
A 2nd Rate Hilton
This is an okay highrise cookie cutter hotel.(It was built by Baron Hilton before the Revolution.)Fine if you must stay here. It's near a lively area of the Malecon at night, just a short walk down La Rampa, a nice boulevard full of lovely young ladies, nightclubs and street vendors. . .
How did they get the last two stars?
Functional and spacious rooms with great views (we had a seaside room on the 16th floor). The rooms seem a bit worn out for a five star hotel though. Location is good for local nightclubs (in particular La Zorra y el Cuervo on Calle 23) and a short walk away from the Malecon.
Friendliness and service from the staff is certainly below the level you would expect from a hotel with a high star rating. Next time we would go for The Nacional (for atmosphere) or Solmelia Cohiba.
Good location. Interesting hotel with some great history. Last major hotel built before the revolution and used as a base for Castro right after the revolution. Close to some useful shopping, right onsite, in fact. Close to the Malecon and Nacional Hotel, still famous with the stars. Less than $3 cab ride to the old city. Lots of restuarants close by. Could be a little cleaner in the lift areas but rooms looked after well. Has a few restuarants, including one open 24 hours. As a general observation, the food in Cuba leaves a little to be desired. Even the expensive restuarants in the old town are expensive for the quality they offer. The Cubans do a good job but their facilities and ingredients appear to be limited food-wise. The buffet at the Havana Libre has plenty of choice and changes every day but it becomes a little tiresome after a week. The Polynesian restaurant onsite has a nice atmosphere. Nice pool area and plenty of bars. Reasonably priced. Friendly staff. Tour operators onsite. Pretty much has everything you need. Room service could be a little better but there is always someone around who can solve any room service problems. Take your own corkscrew. They're impossible to find anywhere if you need to open wine you want to buy at the store downstairs. Stayed there for a week in Dec. 2002. Would go back. Whatever you do, don't stay in Miramar if you're vacationing. There's nothing there except residences and expensive hotels. Not really for vacationers. The city tour is $15 and worthwhile (gives you a good idea of where you should go back to on your own) as is the $44 Vinales tour which includes lunch. The Tropicana is expensive but worth a visit. You get a really great deal in Cuba. It's very reasonable, great weather, great music, wonderful people. Loved Havana. Quite rundown in places but very picturesque. And it's a safe city. Good for a 5 or 6 day stay.
Christmas in Cuba
My husband and I stayed at the Habana Libre for 4 nights as part of a two centre holiday along with Varadero. The hotel used the be the Hilton until it was renamed. The rooms were clean and spacious and offered views across Havana. It is in a good location for getting out and about for exploring the city. The staff were very pleasant. The food was fine, in fact much better than we had had in other parts of Cuba on a previous visit. You have to remember that this is in effect a third world country, albeit that it is opening up now that tourism is becoming more popular. The hotel did have a reputation years ago as being a meeting place for secret agents and it was rumoured that radio and bugging equip[ment was kept in room 1624. Our guide book specifically told us not to ask to be placed in this room! One person we did see when we were staying there was Fidel Castro himself. We had been for a walk along the Malecon and when we returned to the hotel, there was a fleet of Mercedes outside and some soldiers with machine guns. We were allowed into the reception area, as we were hotel guests. We were told that we would have to wait a few minutes before being allowed into the lift to go up to our room. A couple of minutes after this, the lift doors opened and out walked Fidel Castro along with his entourage. A cry of "Viva Fidel" went up from the many staff who were in reception, which he acknowledged, before moving out of the main doors and into his waiting car. When we enquired why he had been at the hotel, the reception staff just shrugged and said "he just called in". I gues we shall never know.