About Melia Peninsula Varadero

  • high speed internet in room
  • shuttle bus service
  • swimming pool
  • restaurant
  • bar lounge
  • fitness center
  • free parking
  • spa
  • suites
  • wheelchair access
  • air conditioning
  • room service
  • dry cleaning
  • smoking rooms available
  • meeting room
  • refrigerator
  • non smoking rooms
  • laundry service
  • flatscreen tv
  • concierge desk
  • banquet room
  • family rooms
  • multilingual staff
  • breakfast buffet
  • airport transportation
  • outdoor pool
  • parking
  • housekeeping
  • free breakfast
  • minibar
  • private balcony
  • breakfast available
  • beach
  • reduced mobility rooms
  • hot tub
  • facilities for disabled guests
  • paid internet
  • kids activities
  • tennis court
  • swimup bar
  • poolside bar
  • kids club
  • babysitting
  • safe

Reviews summary

( 5448 reviews)
  • 5 room
  • 5 pool
  • 5 beach
  • 5 service
  • 4.5 value
  • 4.5 food
  • 4.5 cleanliness
  • 4 location

20 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog

Excellent holiday.

Reviewed Mon 18th of August 2014

"We stayed here in July 2014. Me and my girlfriend have never being abroad and we decided to go to Cuba. I discovered at Melia Peninsula a group of people that make us spent an unforgettable days, very nice, friendly and funny... the evenings at the Mojito's are wonderful... to enjoy alone, with friends or with your family.
W The hotel is quite large but there were so many people that it seemed smaller. All restaurants are good, there is lots of variety; the beach is simply spectacular, night and day. The staff in general, the entertainment staff especially, are incredible, super friendly and nice. There are tourists from all over the world here and it is the ideal place to meet people, and enjoy the landscape and the Cuban flavor.
Deleb at the front desk was super as was the others girls.The staff in the dinning room was excellent, entertainment could not be any better, we were there a week and did not see the same show twice. This was our first visit to Varadero, we will be back!

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 17th of August 2014

Rating breakdown

  • 4 Location
  • 5 Beach
  • 5 Room
  • 5 Pool
  • 5 Service
  • 5 Value
  • 5 Food
  • 4 Cleanliness

Beautiful grounds and friendly staff

Reviewed Mon 21st of April 2014

"Me and my family had a great time enjoying the sun as well as getting to know the people at Melia Peninsula, we were really impressed with the service as well as the people who works there and for sure we would recommend this resort as your next vacation. At arrival our luggage were taken to the front desk where we were given wrist bands to show that we were all inclusive and in a few minutes we were taken to the rooms. We found our room got ready and went straight to the pool, rooms had good size, room to store clothes, mini fridge stocked daily with beer and cool drinks, good size bathroom, double bed, coffer, balcony and nice garden view. Restaurants and bars: food was great everywhere actually better than I expected, we always found something good to eat at the buffet, the only problem was with lines; the A la Cart restaurants were also good, we tried the French and Chinese and we like it. Bars are ok and bartenders are very generous with the alcohol, maybe to much! The overall cleanliness of resort was good, the grounds are fantastic and staff is friendly and cooperative. Our sons loved the kinds pool especially and enjoying the beach and sun.

We had a great time in Cuba and great vacation was had by all and we will go again and so should you.

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 20th of April 2014

Rating breakdown

  • 4 Location
  • 5 Beach
  • 5 Room
  • 5 Pool
  • 5 Service
  • 4 Value
  • 4 Food
  • 5 Cleanliness

The hotel was excellent, with plenty of...

Reviewed Sun 5th of August 2007

"The hotel was excellent, with plenty of food and drink (only local drinks included) on offer all day. Many themed restaurants although these must be booked early and can only be visited once per week. Staff were excellent and very approachable, most of them spoke very good english.

During our stay a hurricane passed over Cuba and the staff dealt with this in a very efficient manner and communicated information to us at all times. Varadero has many tourist attractions very nearby and coaches run to and from the attractions, these were very punctual. I think the best I can say about this holiday is that I would go again!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sun 5th of August 2007

Myself and my boyfriend have just return...

Reviewed Tue 19th of June 2007

"Myself and my boyfriend have just returned from two weeks in Cuba. The first 3 days spent in the Parc Central, Havana and the following 11 in the Tryp, Varadero.

Our first 3 days were absolutely superb; if you want to see the real Cuba then you must go to Havana. The old American cars, the architecture, atmosphere and markets are excellent and unlike many places we felt very safe and at ease whilst walking round the city. But to get a real idea of what Cuban life is like, Thomson arranged a guide to show us and two other couples around. She was brilliant.

The Tryp was really like many other all inclusive resorts. The staff were particularly attentive and friendly and the cocktails were to die for! I lived on the Mojhitos, a must try. The beach was beautiful, watch out for the crabs. The restaurants met our needs although after 11 days the lack of variety began to show.

One big downside for us was that we were not told that you could not use credit cards, associated with US Banks or Switch/mastro. We were unaware that our high street bank was, it therefore meant we had to last on the £ we had brought out, no souvenirs, no trips for us.


Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 19th of June 2007

Having recently returned from this holid...

Reviewed Tue 24th of April 2007

"Having recently returned from this holiday, unfortunately I’m afraid I must complain.

I would stress at this point though, not about The Holiday Place, their service, and the outstanding representatives and tour guides.

Probably the best I have encountered in my many travels.

Lobby Bar: Too small for the size of the Hotel, after 5.30 this is the only bar open in a complex for over 1000 people. The lobby & bar area have only seating for around 300 people and this is serviced by just 3 bar staff and 2-3 waiters. With just 1 beer pump queues were massive.

The bar frequently ran out of glasses, this resulted in us not being served unless we already had a glass, both by the waiters and bar staff. Beer would be served in any glass that could be found, brandy, plastic, wine.

On numerous occasions the bars actually ran out of beer as well, it would take hours to restock and in the case of the ‘overspill’ bar on 2 occasions, 24 hours. (An ‘overspill’ bar was set up outside – with just 1 member of staff.) It was suggested by management we use the Disco bar but there beer was from cans, served in small plastic cups!

Lobby/Bar Toilets: A tiny main block serving lobby, bar & restaurant areas. Rarely clean and tidy. 1 paper towel roll, which when it actually had paper in it didn’t work. More than once sewerage backing up and spilling over from the toilet pans, and taking ages to be cleaned up. We were forever reporting this.

General: The hotel was jam packed; One British group of 4 we spoke to had been placed in a twin room with 4 double beds instead of 2 rooms. This resulted in queues for the restaurants with staff letting people in only as others came out.

Huge queues for food and tables meant food was cold before it could be eaten, dinner could take 3 hours. Our package was supposed to include use of the pre-book specialist restaurants.

There was no mention on our booking that these were limited to 2 per week. Not that it mattered, as the hotel was so full they cut this down to 1 per party (not room) per week, if you were lucky. 2 rooms – 2 weeks should have given us 8 bookings not 2.

Our rep did manage to get us 1 extra booking in the Cuban restaurant, after waiting an hour for the starter, a further hour for the main course we gave up and left.

Rooms: Disabled Room, this is a single room ideally designed for a wheelchair user – except we had been allocated it as a twin and a 2nd double size bed had been added.

This made using a wheelchair in the room very difficult. The TV didn’t work and although reported on many occasions it was never fixed. Cleaning was almost nonexistent – beds were made and pretty towel arrangements left, but the shower/toilet area was not cleaned the whole 2 weeks we were there, the spilled shower gel on the floor proved it!

Sports facilities:
Archery – just 1 bow & arrow available.
Shooting – 4 ranges but 1 rifle which only worked occasionally. We were told by the operator that had been the case for 3 years.
Basket Ball – No balls, given football to use instead.
Tennis – Loose a ball – pay for replacement.
Gym – Far too small and could only hold 15 people.
Jacuzzi – Holds 4 people with no time limit – never could get in it.
Table Tennis & Pool Table – 1 of each and always a queue. Packed away at 5.30 every evening, never got to use it.

This Hotel is supposed to cater for 1000+ people! We picked it as it supposedly had facilities for our teenage kids.

Return Trip: Airport transfer took over 3 hours and made us late for check in. With a disabled passenger, we had pre-booked our seats via your rep at the hotel, and had a printout from Cubana confirming the seat numbers (extra legroom).

This all went out the window at the airport. We were allocated the last 5 seats on a grossly overbooked flight. Those behind us, more than a dozen people, were told they couldn’t fly until the next day – we were very lucky.

According to the very rude Cubana book in clerk, seat allocations do not stand on overbooked flights. Uncomfortable as it was I did manage in a standard seat with an unbending leg jammed under the seat in front, this following a walk the full length of the aircraft to the back, not easy for a wheelchair user.

Rep at the airport made every effort to rectify this but was on a no-hoper from the start.

Aircraft: I have never travelled on such a wreck of an aircraft – ever!

Seat padding was nonexistent and pillows supplied did nothing to help. Tables were missing fixings and askew. The worst though is that mine and a number of seats would not lock in the upright position.

On takeoff/landing the seats would recline on their own and you couldn’t sit upright to eat, the passenger behind was not amused and had to hold the seat up to eat. My husband is a professional in building aircraft seats, and in his opinion the seats were unfit for service and downright dangerous.

The crew commented they would report it – yet again, they apparently were always like that! With no support, (I also have back disc problems), it took me over a week to recover from the discomfort caused by the flight.

No way is this a 5 star hotel, I have stayed in far superior 2 star properties.

In its defence the staff were all extremely pleasant and helpful, right down to the gardeners – without them the holiday would have been a total disaster.

Food, very good and plentiful, plus the location and grounds, superb.

I would return to Cuba, but no way to a Sol Melia hotel or fly by Cubana."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 24th of April 2007

This hotel is amazing. It was like a dre...

Reviewed Sat 28th of October 2006

"This hotel is amazing. It was like a dream come true for us... I can not put anything negative about this place at all. The food was amazing and was truly all inclusive, including in the hotel room mini bar. The staff were amazing, the rooms were spotless, spacious and luxurious. The beach was onsite an amazing... Everything was above and beyond my expectation. I can not wait to be able to return again!!!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sat 28th of October 2006

We just returned this morning. Absolutel...

Reviewed Tue 29th of August 2006

"We just returned this morning. Absolutely loved it & had a wonderful time. Pleasant staff, great food, fantastic evening entertainment with kiddies disco, shows with amazing dancers & separate adult disco.

As a single parent traveling for the first time long haul with 3 children 11, 10 & 16 months I was a tad nervous, but we all had a great time. Including me!

The kids club & baby club were invaluable. Staff are wonderful with the children & my older boys went on trips, kayaking, sailing etc. Things I could not do with them & baby. I even tried baby in baby club a few times & had an hour or 2 to myself too! The staff were great

The only draw back was that we simply could not book a reservation in the a la carte restaurants. Wach day we went to book we were unlucky.

Do tip the staff - they work very long hours, are always friendly and do a great job. Also, many items we take for granted in our lives simply cannot be found easily in Cuba and/or cost a lot (there are many poor people). We left clothes, shoes, toiletries & medicines... all is gratefully & genuinely accepted

A wonderful holiday which I would recommend to anyone."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Tue 29th of August 2006

Tryp Peninsula is a lovely hotel, it's s...

Reviewed Fri 7th of July 2006

"Tryp Peninsula is a lovely hotel, it's set in gorgeous grounds that are well looked after - the gardeners are out working first thing every morning. The beach is perfect with white sand and crystal clear aqua marine water, just what you expect from the Caribbean.

The hotel staff are friendly and attentive and i can recommend the Italian restaurant for late night/early morning pizzas! The cocktails are pretty good too and there is plenty of fresh fruit on offer - the mango in particular is simply delicious. I can thoroughly recommend the hotel to anyone, it really is lovely.

Varadero is a wonderful place for diving as there is so much to sea - wrecks, moray eels, turtles, dolphins and loads of colourful fish.

The only downside to the holiday was Thomson. They changed our booking at the last minute and then forgot about us. Thomson failed to collect us from the hotel and take us to the welcome meeting and then they forgot to pick us up and take us to the airport on departure day! Considering we didn't ask much of our rep I think it was an appalling service."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Fri 7th of July 2006

We went to this resort in Dec 2005. Afte...

Reviewed Sat 14th of January 2006

"We went to this resort in Dec 2005. After reading some bad reviews about accommodation in Cuba we definitely made the right choice.

We flew with virgin I would recommend that you travel economy plus, which is quite comfortable.

On arrival at the resort the staff are very friendly.

The rooms are quite spacious and clean with regular maid service.

The resort is massive and is probably one of the best all-inclusive resorts we have been to. I mean everything is included even room service. The restaurants are open for most of the day with a good variety of food. There is a good snack bar by the pool.
The beach restaurant is excellent with a daily BBQ.

I loved the beach it was very clean and safe.

An excellent holiday. Would definitely go back.

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Sat 14th of January 2006

My husband and I stayed at the Tryp Peni...

Reviewed Thu 30th of June 2005

"My husband and I stayed at the Tryp Peninsula for two weeks in July with our five year old son. Overall, we were disappointed with the hotel, though there were some good points as well.

Good Points:

Rooms spacious and nicely appointed, with large bathrooms and separate shower and bath.
Evening entertainment excellent - shows in open air theatre every evening at 10.00 pm, with a good variety of themes to appeal to adults and children alike.

Gondola and Tocororo restaurants both good for evening meals, particularly Tocororo, which is air-conditioned. Need to pre-book reservations - I emailed direct to the hotel in advance and all my reservations for the a la cartes were emailed back to me, which avoided having to stand in a queue for an hour with everybody else.

Gardens and outdoor areas all beautifully maintained.

Staff in general all very pleasant and helpful, particularly the bar staff and security staff.

Bad Points:

Main buffet restaurant was a disgrace - disorganised chaos, with no manager, headwaiter or maitre d organising things, and nobody in charge. This is a large restaurant seating probably four or five hundred people and they just cannot cope with the numbers. Tables are left dirty and you end up having to sit at an unlaid table with dirty table cloths.

Dirty plates are cleared onto huge trolleys in the middle of the dining room with uneaten food scraped into large plastic buckets on the bottom of the trolleys. These trolleys sit in the dining room until they are full (and sometimes longer) when they are moved to the kitchen. Not only is this revolting to have to look at while you’re supposedly enjoying a 4.5 star eating experience, they encourage flies, of which there are lots in the dining room.

The beams in the dining room are covered in bird excrement, which looks as if it hasn’t been cleaned off since the hotel was built. They run out of clean plates and glasses with monotonous regularity (usual excuse: dishwashing machine broken). Queuing for food is very tedious, particularly at breakfast time, and vaguely reminiscent of Butlins - again, some sort of organisation needed here. On the plus side, the food was of an acceptable standard, though limited if you went in late, and fairly repetitive.

Kids club really disappointing. Programme of activities displayed on blackboard in club, but Delia who ran the kids club didn’t keep to the programme, only carrying out the activities if pressed by parents. Also there is a large cupboard of toys in the kids club, which Delia kept locked all the time. One day Delia was off sick and another girl ran the club, and opened the cupboard for the kids to get the toys out. It was so nice for them actually to have something to play with that day rather than just sitting around. My son got bored at the club (understandably) and preferred to come with us. On other holidays, we have not been able to drag him away from the kids club!!

For four days during our holiday, there was no ice in the hotel as the machine was not working. This meant that if you wanted a glass of lemonade or a gin and tonic, it was warmer than the coffee served at breakfast time - NOT great in 90 degree heat. This impacted hugely on our enjoyment of our holiday.

The swim up pool bar NEVER had any ice - the barman agreed that it was an appalling state of affairs. On the other hand, if your holiday dream is to sit by the pool sipping a warm cocktail out of a paper cup, this is the destination for you!

Outdoor seating - the main bar (the only bar open in the evening other than the karaoke club) was not adequate for the number of people the hotel catered for. This meant queuing at the bar for drinks and difficulty in finding seats - in fact, there are only approximately 45 seats outside for a hotel, which has 591 rooms - you do the maths.

As the bar and seating areas indoors were not air conditioned, it was often very sticky and unpleasant sitting inside. This was even more of a shame as there were plenty of other areas (eg by the children's pool) which could have been utilised for evening outdoor seating and further bar facilities. We drew the conclusion that, as an all inclusive resort, it was in the hotel’s interests to minimise use of the bar.

Pool areas - unmanned, so yesterday’s rubbish sometimes not cleared up the next morning, inadequate sun parasols (particularly important at kid’s pool), NO chair mattresses. No drinks service round pools at all. Pools themselves quite nice.

Hotel is located in area where you can't walk to any local amenities, shops, bars, restaurants, market - nothing at all there. We did not like this aspect at all, though I appreciate this is a subjective thing.

Overall, disappointing for the amount of money we spent. Have been to other parts of the Caribbean on all inclusive of the same 4.5 star standard, and can honestly say this was not of an equivalent standard.

As a final note, we discussed the shortcomings of the buffet restaurant with the Restaurant Manager (who we requested to see after a particularly gruesome evening). Worryingly, he agreed with all our comments, said he was aware of the problems, and had discussed them with his boss on several occasions, however, as yet, solutions have obviously not been forthcoming.

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Thu 30th of June 2005

Amazing! Would go back in a second

Reviewed Thu 6th of December 2012

"My brother, and I were in Cuba from Feb 3-10, my dad stayed an extra week after that. I had the most amazing time ever! I have travelled to Mexico and other places, and have to say by far that this was the best vacation ever! The food and the people were awesome! Went into Havana and had a blast. Met lots of awesome people. Had an unfortunate moped accident on my last day there, only good thing that came out of it was meeting two amazing guys from Toronto! Too bad I didn't get there e-mail addresses. So Justin and Lance if you guys read this review e-mail me!! It's Steph the crazy Calgarian!!!! This place was by far a five star resort! A must see!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Mon 10th of March 2003

Nice vacation at the TRYP Peninsula

Reviewed Mon 12th of November 2012

"We had a very nice week at the TRYP Peninsula in Varadero, from Frb. 11 to Feb. 18, 2003.The rooms are very nice and the site is indeed beautiful. I've got several issues to mention, however.They lack storage space. You have two shelves and two drawers (half depth) to store everything you have. If travelling with a baby, forget it.Thanks to those that have started giving extra tips (1$) to almost every employee they have contact with, it has become increasingly difficult to get service at this place. Apparently, our experience is not unique. Those who tip may well get little extras (like being served faster), but the others who don't still tip have to wait.So we often ended up waiting several minutes at the bar to be served; empoyees seemed to ignore customers, except when a known "tipper" came in. same goes for getting some lunch at the snack-bar counters. If tourists increasingly want to do this, then perhaps travel companies (Air Transat, Signature, etc.) should consider taking out the "service" fee included in the fare and let every customer pay his own tip. It's easy to go over 100$US per week...Please note that all electrical outlets in the rooms are of the europeean type (two round plugs), but THEY ARE COMPATIBLE with our North American plugs. They have the two required slots and they're polarized (i.e. one is larger than the other). Also, voltage is 220V, so make sure you plug something that can work @220V (i.e. electric shaver, camcorder power supply, etc.). One notable exception is in the bathroom, where there is ONE North-Am. 110V socket on the hair dryer, for electric shavers only.The water in every pool is not heated; since it was very windy and cold during the evenings/nights we were there (bring a warm sweater!), our 2-yr old son didn't enjoy the pools. Older kids didn't seem to care.Great baby club. They have a room full of toys (along with a plastic balls pool) and many videos to entertain the very young ones. It's open from about 9:30am up to 7:00pm; you can leave your baby to them for a couple of hours and go visit Varadero or enjoy the beach. If you want them to babysit during dinner (i.e. past 7:00pm), it's 5$US per hour.The miniclub has lots of activities and a "minishow" they do every evening at the central theater. Our baby seemed to enjoy that show a lot, but was too young to be in the miniclub. It's suited for children aged 4 and up.The turkish bath was still not working (has it ever been?).Buffet is very large, but is about 90% the same everyday. Arrive early if you want to enjoy little extras like some bubbly at the breakfast, or punch at dinner. When they ran out of them, they weren't keen to replace them fast.I'd definitely go back there with babies/children, given all the infrastructure they put in place for them; however, I'd would probably try another place if travelling only with teens and/or adults."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: Fri 28th of February 2003

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Melia Peninsula Varadero is also called

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  • Tryp Peninsula Varadero
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