Melia Cayo Coco - Paradise
Reviewed 13 October, 2021
Melia Cayo Coco Review
Currently still at this resort! Will be leaving on Saturday the 16th.
The beach is phenomenal, the sand is fine and the weather is hot - just like you’d expect. Bring deet mosquito repellant, keep it with you when you’re on the beach. They are intense right before and during a storm, so if you’re caught in rain and need to stick it out at the beach restaurant - you won’t be eaten alive. Also intense mosquitos immediately off the plane and in the airport.
Bars are awesome, entertainment is great, a few places still not in operation because of capacity but I’d assume that will change soon.
I upgraded to a Grand Suite Lagoon View, and have the most beautiful sunrises. The room is gorgeous, with plenty of space to lounge around. Two tv’s (not that you’ll use them) and a private balcony. Grand suite includes room service if you paid for the room or upgraded. Also has bottle of rum and wine plus the normal Cristal in the fridge. And King bed, not two beds, a full king!
A la cartes were okay, got tired of them because they felt too planned and I came here to chill, so buffet is ideal. Food is AWESOME. Choices of mahi-mahi, chicken, octopus, shrimp etc, grilled fresh. Wonderful selection. Honestly some of the best food I’ve ever had in Cuba.
Customer service here is wonderful. Very attentive to guests, I have to thank Luis and Gippsy for going out of their way to ensure that guests are happy. Marco (GM) is visible and very friendly.
Small resort on Cuba scale, but honestly just wonderful.
CUC no longer available - tip in USD. If you have larger USD because airport didn’t have singles, ask the waitress/waiter/bartender and they will gladly exchange the 1’s for larger denominations.
I brought and distributed Acetaminophen to people throughout the trip. They also asked for Advil. You can buy a large bottle and then segment into smaller bags (when at the resort, keep in bottle through security obviously) to ensure you give enough to people, or arrange to give to the on-site doctor. They also appreciate bug spray, sandals (can be dollar store) and clothes (baby clothes too!) are great as well.
Covid protocols are what I think people are hesitant about right now, but I’ve never seen a Cuban without a mask. They are constantly sanitizing and it feels very safe. You will wear a mask while getting food, or walking around a restaurant or interacting with staff directly unless you are eating/drinking.
When you get to the resort you will take a rapid covid test and be told your result, then you go about your stay. Three days prior to leaving they post where to go for your PCR to get back to Canada. Results are available a day before you leave.
This resort is amazing, I will be back.
Don’t hesitate - book it!
A beautiful, relaxing vacation!
Reviewed 1 October, 2021
I stayed at this resort for 3 weeks from July 10th to July 31st of this year. I had a very good experience overall but with a few points that stood out to me for improvement.
Beach: Very beautiful, long, white and sandy and free of large rocks which made entering the water easy. There were plenty of available lounge chairs during my stay. The first two weeks that I was there the water had an opaque green color with larger waves and a constant, moderating breeze. There was also some seaweed along the shore of the beach. It would have been nice if the hotel staff would clean the seaweed along the shores, as I have seen in other resorts. The third week of my stay, the winds calmed down and the water turned a spectacular crystal clear turquoise blue color. Gorgeous. I found the consistency of the sand to be slightly coarse, not as fine as the sand of Cayo Santa María, for example, but still pleasant.
Room: I reserved a grand premium lagoon-view room and loved it! It was very scenic waking up every morning to the tranquility of the salt-water lagoon. Very relaxing to lounge on the balcony during the evenings as well. One of the downsides was that there wasn’t much privacy with the people staying in the room next door, since you could see through the fence between the two balconies. It would appreciate it if the fences were made solid for more privacy. Also, although beautiful and serene, the lagoon-view rooms are located a longer walking distance away from the main pool area, buffet restaurant and beach than many of the classic rooms.
Pools: Only one pool in the resort, although an adequate size. I enjoyed relaxing on the lounge chairs of the Bali-style cabanas on the pool and the day beds near the pool as well. I found there was always a cabana available to lie down under. One big thing that I found was missing was a swim-up bar. I have been to many resorts in Cuba with multiple pools and swim-up bars, but this hotel only has one pool and no swim-up bar. There was so much sunshine during my stay, literally the sun shone from 6:30 in the morning to 8:00 in the evening, non-stop! While very beautiful, the sun at times was overwhelming. I believe that having a swim-up bar would not only be great so that guests could have a refreshing drink inside of the pool, but also to be able to take a much-needed break from the sun. Also, I found the depth of the pool water to be slightly shallow, with a deeper section of water located only in the centre of the pool. On the up-side, when the snack bar wasn’t overly busy, I was able to order drinks and food to be brought directly to the cabana on the pool where I was lounging. The food at the snack bar located in the pool area was decent as well. The service was ok but there were a couple of times when the snack bar was busy, when I ordered food and never received what I had ordered. Perhaps this could be better organized.
Food: Decent overall for Cuba but not the greatest. The buffet restaurant was generally good with a decent amount of variety. There were always a few different stations for breakfast and dinner. For example, fresh fruit smoothies, eggs, pancakes, for breakfast and for dinner, stations for freshly made pasta dishes, grilled meats and seafood. I found there to be a nice variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, seafood etc, but as this is Cuba, there are always absences of certain foods. For example, no fresh lemon or lime for making mojitos, other cocktails, or with food during the entirety of my stay. I also never saw fresh tomatoes for my salads, hamburgers, sandwiches, etc. Lettuce was hit and miss, some days it was available, other days no. The meat patties of the hamburgers could have been more flavorful. Pizzas were good, however I did not like the type of jamón (ham) used in the hotel. No condensed milk for making speciality coffee, only regular milk for making coffee. I found the coffee at the lobby bar to be good, although with a slightly bitter aftertaste. The a la carte restaurants I found to be very good overall, with great presentation of food, service and attention to detail. Especially the lagoon-view restaurant for its wonderful views over the lagoon and delicious wines. I would like to say thank you to the staff of the lagoon-view restaurant for such excellent, attentive service. Also, the Mediterranean restaurant was very good with beautiful views overlooking the ocean. The Ranchón restaurant (on the beach) also had decent food, however there were a few nights when the mosquitoes were horrible, biting constantly even with mosquito repellant on! I believe that the Ranchón restaurant should have been closed at night, because of how bad the mosquitoes were. With regard to drinks, I believe that having fresh lemon or lime would make all the difference in terms of improving the flavor and quality. The lemon/lime juice made from concentrate that was used in the hotel just wasn’t the same for me. Unfortunately, as well, I did not at all enjoy the piña coladas made from the powdered mix. They would have been much better if made with fresh fruits. There was fresh mango juice always available in the lobby bar that I did enjoy very much. Although at times it was made with added water and sugar, which I did not like. I always prefer pure fruit juice. Finally, it would have been nice to have had a greater selection of Cuban rums for drinking straight, as there was not too much variety in the rum.
Staff: Overall I found the staff at the lobby bar and a la carte restaurants to be very attentive, professional and friendly. I found that at the buffet restaurants the service could have been better, especially in the evenings for dinner. Many times, I was not asked what I wanted to drink, but rather had to actively flag down the waiter to ask for it. I would like to give a special mention to Gippsy López Reyes, the sales manager of the hotel, for taking good care of all of my needs and for answering all of my questions. She was always available when I needed her. Thank you Gippsy! Also, to Pedro Márquez Sánchez, the manager of the Sports Club, for being such a great, hard-working member of the hotel staff! Thank you, Pedro, for always keeping me entertained with activities like tennis, ping-pong, archery, chess, even biking! To Juan Perreira, for being such a fantastic general manager. Thank you for the personal welcome you gave me. I have never seen a general manager so present in a hotel, I would see him everywhere, and I mean everywhere, always working and making sure everything was running smoothly! I would have enjoyed having the opportunity to chat more with him. Thank you, Juan Perreira. I wish you much success in your new role at the Meliá International in Varadero. And to the rest of the staff, thank you Tamara at the lobby bar for your good coffee and friendly service, and Joel, the bartender, for your expertise in drinks.
Entertainment: I found the nightly shows to be very good overall, well-orchestrated and not too repetitive with a lot of variety. A special mention to Joshua García, the choreographer, for his talent and professionalism in organizing the shows and choreographies. Also, to Anamaris Zayas, one of the dancers, for giving me salsa lessons. Thank you, Ana! All of the other dancers were good as well. One thing I didn’t appreciate so much was the repetitiveness of the nightly music, and also the fact that there was very little salsa music in the evenings for dancing. I mentioned this clearly to the DJ and in Spanish, but unfortunately it didn’t make much of a difference.
Overall, I had a very pleasant and relaxing stay at the Meliá Cayo Coco. It was my first vacation since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. I felt very safe at all times in the hotel, with the precautions that were being taken. The hotel and my room were always very clean, being cleaned constantly and surfaces disinfected by the staff. I appreciated the cleanliness of the hotel and the care they took for the safety of us guests and staff against covid. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone thinking of coming to Cayo Coco! I hope to see you again soon, for a second visit.
Reviewed 30 September, 2021
Our first time at Melia Cayo Coco and definitely not the last!
Special thanks to Leannis, Pedro, Emilio, Tamara from the lobby bar, Yamil at the pool bar and beach restaurant, Jesus from the beach bar and many others, who made our 2 weeks there so great!
I would name almost everyone from the hotel, but unfortunately this is not possible. All together the personnel made us feel like at home right from the beginning. Although it was our first time here we felt like we are back again among the friends!
The management is doing a great job too, especially given the complicated times. We communicated with Juan the Spanish manager, Niurka the customer service manager, Luis the public relations manager to our full satisfaction.
Also, Air Canada rep Marciano has been doing a great job!
Finally, the catamaran Intrepido crew did everything possible to give us a very remarkable experience during the trip.
If you need sun, sand and ocean along with cold drinks and warm friendly hearts, come to Melia Cayo Coco!