If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I celebrated my 30th birthday in Cuba! We spent a few days in Havana and the last two days on the infamous beaches of Varadero. Since we had stayed in an AirBnB in Havana, we thought we’d live the all-inclusive life (unlimited drinks. YASSS!) at the Ocean Vista Azul resort during our stay in Varadero.
If you ever visit Cuba (which is a total must) you NEED to squeeze in a couple of extra days to lounge on the beautiful white sandy beaches of Varadero. This resort is about 2 hours from Havana and only 20 minutes from the Varadero Airport. I’m such a nerd when it comes to traveling – I like researching what there is to do, where to go eat (umm… like that’s super important to me!), and of course, where to stay. I thought I’d write my personal review on the resort we decided to stay at – the Ocean Vista Azul.
Has this ever happened to you? You see something in a picture (maybe online) that you LOVE but then when you see it in person it looks nothing like it? That’s happened to me when I’ve shopped online, gone apartment hunting or even in instances when I’ve ordered a meal off of a menu that looks DE-LI-CIOUS, but when I received it, I felt deceived. I was a little nervous that this was going to be our experience with Ocean Vista Azul. I couldn’t find many reviews on this resort so I based my decision to stay at this hotel off of the images on their website. But let me tell you, this resort didn’t disappoint!
We arrived at the resort at 11AM thinking check-in time was at noon, but it was actually at 3PM. Oops. Regardless, we were greeted and checked-in without any hesitation. We were immediately introduced to our personal butler (yes, we’re fancy like that). Jk. Apparently, if you reserve any of their oceanfront rooms, you are what they consider a “privilege” member. As a privilege member you get special services such as your own personal butler who helps you with literally anything you need during your stay. If you need to make reservations at a restaurant off or on the resort, need a taxi, want to book any tourist activity, he/she will be at your service (idk why I am saying that in a British accent in my head). The privilege service also means having access to a special lounge room with a very skilled bartender, the ability to dine at one of their seafood restaurants exclusive for privilege members, receive 10% off of any water activity like snorkeling and a free hour of Wi-Fi service per day during your stay. We received the best customer service from all of their employees we came across.
The oceanfront rooms are clean, elegant and chic. They include necessities like an iron and ironing board, hairdryer, a minibar, upgraded toiletries and most importantly, the privilege members receive…*drumroll……… a bottle of wine. We were delivered a bottle of rosé. (How did they know my love for rosé? I have no idea.) You will love these spacious and comfy rooms. The bathrooms are enormous. It has a waterfall shower and a bathtub overlooking the ocean and double sinks. SCORE!
The resort has a few restaurants onsite. Their three main themed restaurants include: international, Italian and seafood. They have a small coffee/bakery shop as well. Similar to other all-inclusive resorts most of their restaurants are buffet-style. Their seafood restaurant, exclusive for privilege members, requires a reservation, but was never busy which resulted in very attentive waiters.
While in Cuba, you obviously have to try their mojitos. We met a bartender who made us several specialty drinks that I’d never tried before! We kept on telling him to surprise us and with each drink, we were pleasantly surprised.
You can choose to go to two different beaches on the resort. They have a “quiet” beach and a “party” beach. By “party” they mean they have activities like yoga, sand volleyball and dancing lessons. Either way, they are each equally as beautiful. The water is crystal clear and the white sand is absolutely amazing. No seaweed, rocks or pebbles. All you’ll feel is the sand between your toes. Both beaches have bars nearby to grab one of Cuba’s popular mojitos or their strawberry daiquiris. I was shocked to see just how clean the beach was. Varadero has the most beautiful beach I’ve been to. I’m not sure if it’s because we visited during Cuba’s non-peak season, but the beach wasn’t crowded at all. It wasn’t hard finding open lounge chairs, which was nice!
The resort is home to two pools. The most beautiful one is, of course, their infinity pool. I hardly ever hang out at a resort’s pool when I go to a beach, because you can swim in a pool at home. Duh. But this Ocean Vista Azul’s infinity pool is everything. It overlooks the ocean and let me tell you, I’ve never seen a more perfect sunset than I did from their pool.
Ocean Vista Azul provided us with such a great experience, beautiful views of the ocean and an incredibly relaxing time. If you decide to pay Varadero (or Cuba) a visit, stay here!