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Reviewed 1 April 2018

The Pestana resort came highly recommended by a colleague in Canada who has been vacationing in various areas of Cuba for 12 years. My husband and I are self-proclaimed “travel snobs”, having enjoyed 5+ * holidays all over the world. We came to Cuba with open minds and little expectations.

The resort is average but the staff work hard to make it the best they can. We were reminded that it was the “end of their winter” when we arrived and by the end of our week flowers were in bloom and buds were evident on the trees. I can only imagine how colourfully lush this resort will be within a couple weeks and commend the gardeners for their work.

The food exceeded our expectations. Once again, if you are going to visit this unique country, do your research so you know what they have (or don’t have) to work with. The staff was amazing and I found that if you were friendly to them, they reciprocated. A special shout out to Fernando in the main dining room. He was attentive, professional and very friendly. Made us feel like family.

The lobby and lounge staff was amazing and there were a couple waiters who were so much fun. One waiter (apologies for not remembering his name) had energy to spare, shared the fact he commutes 1.5 hr each way to and from work, is married to a criminal lawyer and has two little boys. He was incredible, entertaining and efficient.

Once in Cuba, take the time to learn about the country, the culture and the people. We did the day long Moron tour which was very informative and well worth the time and money.

The beaches speak for themselves. Without a doubt, they are some of the best in the world. You can walk along the shore as far as they eye can see. The contrasting colours of the sky and sea are inexplicably beautiful.

If you want a cultural, eye opening experience and are willing to visit a unique country with an open mind, I highly recommend the Pestana in Cayo Coco.

Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
4  Thank Alpeller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingCcs, Public Relations Manager at Pestana Cayo Coco All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2018

Dear Alpeller

We really appreciate your visit and your time in write your comments concerning you recently stay with us.
We hope you will us the opportunity to welcome once again, it would be amazing.
Warmest Regard,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 April 2018

Stayed here Mar 22-29 on a recommendation. From the start we were impressed by the layout, the staff and the food. The resort was very busy but they managed to make any request a priority. The beach on Cayo Coco is truly amazing and knowing the devastation after hurricane Irma they have done an fantastic job bringing the resort back into shape. Our room in Bungalow 10 was close to everything but quiet and gave us a partial view of the ocean. The food was varied and we were never hungry. The pizza by the beach is a must as is the breaded chicken by the pool. The Cuban speciality restaurant was our favourite with the lamb stew getting top marks. Loved the ice cream cones available on the beach. Drinks were of good quality and if you like gin the Pink Gin is amazing, if I left any !! The shows were of a high standard I particularly like the "Back in time" show with music from the 60's, 70's and 80's. I have to thank Oscar and the customer service team for making extra effort to make our vacation memorable. We made great memories and have made a few new friends during our stay. We love Cuba in general and will hope to make it back to Pestana again in the future. Small resort with great heart and very family friendly. Thanks again to everyone.

Stayed: March 2018
3  Thank Wendy V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingCcs, Public Relations Manager at Pestana Cayo Coco All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2018

Dear Wendy V

Thank you so much for have visited, and take time to write a comment about your vacations, thanks for let me know that i was one of the person who did that .

Warmest Regard Oscar

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Reviewed 31 March 2018 via mobile

Well firstly, there are some obvious parts of the hotel impacted by Hurricane Irma such as some balcony roofs missing of the trees and gardens being pretty damaged. I’m not going to mark the hotel down for any of those as it would be unfair.
What isn’t impacted by the hurricane is the food and service which is really what brings this hotel down. Be prepared to queue for about half of your holiday as there will be a queue for reception, a queue to book the a la carte restaurants, a queue for your toast, a queue for the egg for your toast and it’s probably due to the fact they have one person at the beach bar which is constantly got people lined right out the shack (so why not put a second person there? but also because there is so little that looks tasty, everybody goes for the same few things. I felt like a 7 year old again, living off hot dogs and chips from the snack bar and pancakes for breakfast but I couldn’t eat anything else there.
The Thomas Cook rep tells you not to leave your towel on a lounger if you’re not at the pool, we followed this rule for the first 2 days until we realised the only way to get a decent space (we needed shade for 2 babies) was to do what everybody else was doing and get out there early before breakfast. We’d only do that when we expected to be at the pool for most of the day but unfortunately you’ll see many loungers with towels that are not filled at any point of the day which is extremely selfish and the hotel needs to be doing something about this.
Indian a la carte was laughable - we got told the Portuguese was worse so didn’t try it but the Cuban and Italian were better than the regular buffet.
Snack bar is just about the only place you can get hot food.
We did the hop on/off bus and seen the other hotels and they all seemed better than the Pestana. We also went to Havana and met some couples from other hotel, they all said their food and service was great and they’d go back whilst we were telling them ours was horrendous and we’d never be back.
You’ll see people who tip most often skip the queues and the bar staff will serve them first, been to all inclusives all across Europe, India, Mexico and I’ve never seen food or service as bad as this before. We made a complaint and got upgraded to what they call priority, it essentially means you can get the worst location for the pool everyday, it is supposed to mean you can get a spot at the beach although we went down and the guy said maybe tomorrow and we were offered a different room although it was just the same room but higher up so declined. They did offer us a move to a new hotel which we should have taken in hindsight.
I read on here the pizza was worth trying but I didn’t understand as we tried it twice and it was almost as bad as the cold food from the buffet. We started off drinking Banana Mamas and every time we asked for one of these, the staff poured it differently, we had them in pink, red and yellow before moving on to Rum and Cokes. They also pour these really strong unless told specifically to make it drinkable. They guys at the snack bar make the best food but they also forgot or messed up my order several times, on top of forgetting it completely, they gave me the wrong thing or gave me my breakfast without toast which is included in the English Breakfast, since I had ate the rest, I asked if I could just have toast with egg (also part of the breakfast), the girl said I couldn’t do this hahaha so instead of making me my egg and toast, I ordered a full new breakfast (egg, toast, tomato, bacon and sausage (really hot dog)) and just ate the egg and toast for their stupidity.
My Dad had taken a picture of the long queue and a security guard approached him to ask what he was doing, when my Dad told him, the guard said it was because this was the best hotel in Cuba, this obnoxious and quite frankly wrong type of attitude is exactly why this hotel should be avoided. The staff will sit and talk to their co workers when you are waiting to be served constantly, we tipped lots of people outside this hotel (as we took many days to Moron and Havana away for some decent food) but nobody deserved it inside. Other than the girl running the kids club, we gave her nappies as she had asked for these rather than currency. The entertainment was pretty good as well now I think of it. If you haven’t booked this hotel already, I promise you the extra money for a better hotel will be worth it. Cayo Coco was lovely as was the rest of Cuba we went to see, but I’d never be back to this hotel, not even if it was free.

Stayed: March 2018, travelled with family
4  Thank Begg_rfc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingCcs, Public Relations Manager at Pestana Cayo Coco All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2018

Dear Begg_rfc

Thank you very much for spend your vacations whit us, and taking time to write an important comments.
Be sure that every day we going to do our best in order to satisfy the entire client, we regret the issue related

we would like to see you once again and share the best moment in your life.

Warmest Regard,

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Reviewed 31 March 2018 via mobile

my partner and i,2 of our friends and another 2 from canada went to pestana to celebrate my partners 50

well it was definitely one birthday she wont forget!!
we tried to book all our rooms together with the assistant manager oscar thru emails
which he promised us he would try,not a bad effort we were block 2 friends were block 4 n the canadians were block 7
so if i start with the horrendous queuing for everything
breakfast started with queuing to get into the free for all hall
breakfast was anything from slimy streaky bacon to a full sunday carvery
fresh eggs were available if you were prepared to QUE
dinner again QUES for what resembled left over from the night before
and tea was que que que too
the bars were a constant stream of ques whilst the waiters took there tips from you an vanished at times
the pizzas near the beach were nice but again QUES
i once stood for an hour and twenty
but i really enjoyed pizza that day
the animation team just seemed to shout down the mic which was turned up to the max which meant no peace n quiet anywhere in the hotel,beach or pool
sunbeds were lovely if you got up at 530 in the morning just like being at work,otherwise you sat on the sand
even tho the hotels policy is no bed reservations
our toilet didn’t flush for the first 8 days even tho reported every day
and to top it all we all had diarrhoea after visiting the italian ala carte
3rd visit to beautiful cuba first n last visit to pestana
very poor hotel please research properly before booking there
definitely not recommended from our experience

Stayed: March 2018, travelled as a couple
5  Thank sime7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingCcs, Public Relations Manager at Pestana Cayo Coco All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2018

Dear sime7

Thank you very much for spend your vacations whit us, and taking time to write an important comments.
Be sure that every day we going to do our best in order to satisfy the entire client, we regret the issue related

We are saddened to hear that you could not enjoy your vacation; it is a real shame that the effort made by our employees offer you a excellent service is not their appreciation.
However I offer my most sincere of apologies for the mentioned disadvantages,

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Reviewed 31 March 2018

We traveled the week after March break, arriving on St. Patrick's Day for one week. (Family of 6, including 2 kids)

We have visited Cuba on vacation 3 times previously and knew what to expect for the most part. We were also wary of negative Pestana reviews & how the hurricane affected the area.

Transport & Check-In
The distance to the airport was great! 15 minutes and you are there.
Check-in was pretty well done for the most part, not overly crowded, however an issue with my parents booking (not in the same building as the rest of the family) caused some headaches.

Buffet & A la Carts
Buffet is busy. (Pretty sure the resort was booked solid) Line up for everything. Some popular items were tough to get. It didn't help that some guests are gluttons and just fill their plates so full its heaping over the side.

Food in general was blah, however, pretty much in line with most other Cuban resorts. As mentioned in another review, the previous night's dinner seemed to be served for breakfast. Some items were cold, over or under cooked. Vegetarians may struggle to find something new daily.

We ate at the Portuguese, Italian & Cuban a la cartes. Skip the Portuguese. Cuban was the best by far.

Line up for the pizza near the beach at least once.

Beach & Pool
Beach is fantastic, one of the best I've even seen. Clear, clean, warm and you can walk out fairly far. Great for little ones, especially when calm. Enough shade, if you want to play the towel game. There was usually only one bartender at the beach bar, which resulted in long line-ups.

Pool is ok, run of the mill. The bridge blocking/separating the pool is a poor design choice. Some shade, but again, you needed to get up early to reserve. For some inexplicable reason, the swim up side of the pool bar was closed. Only the walk up side had bartenders serving. Disappointing as it is advertised as a feature.

For both, the noise is too loud for the most part. (Speakers turned up high) There is no quiet spots, there is noise pollution all over the tiny resort. Be wary if you are looking for that type of relaxing atmosphere.If you are looking to take part, you'll be fine.

We got frustrated with the 'towel game' at the beach/pool (getting up at 5:30am to reserve shaded spots) until management forced a change on our 6th day (too little too late for us). Prior to that employees were encouraging the behavior by setting up your 'reserved' chairs for you for a peso or two. Guests were leaving towels there all day without using them, it was frustrating and rude. Hopefully that crackdown sticks for future guests.

Shows
The kids mini-disco is a hit. Try and get some of those songs out of your head. With the little ones, we didn't see much of the adult shows though.

Rooms
Not bad really. Some maintenance is needed on the balcony, sliding door & bathroom. However it was clean & the cot/crib we asked for was ready in the room.

Overall
Its a smaller resort, which is great for getting around, but as mentioned, it means you are also close to the noise at any point. Beach is amazing but everything after that is just average, especially the food.

  • Stayed: March 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
5  Thank oneillfc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingCcs, Public Relations Manager at Pestana Cayo Coco All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2018

Dear oneillfc

Thank you very much for spend your vacations whit us, and taking time to write an important comments.
Be sure that every day we going to do our best in order to satisfy all the client, we regret the issue related. I would like to tell you that Working method are under review


We greatly appreciate any suggestions you have done we will consider to provide excellent service.

Warmest Regard,

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