Breezes Jibacoa Reviews

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Breezes Jibacoa  

Arroyo Bermejo Beach, Cuba.

"Third Time a Charm"
Posted by: Lorne  on Jan 22, 2015
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Breezes Jibacoa Reviews
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Breezes Jibacoa Jibacoa Cuba

#1
of 2 Hotels in Jibacoa

User rating 4.2

Based on 41 reviews

Breezes Jibacoa Information


The SuperClubs Breezes Jibacoa, with a four-star category, is the company's newest hotel in the country.
The unspoiled setting and a clean and calm sea turn this hotel into a natural option with the conveniences our guests need.
Since it is very close to Havana, Matanzas City, and Varadero Beach, you can easily visit these places of tourist, historic, and cultural interest

Share your experiences with others. Don't forget to send your review to Debbie by using an easy form.


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Breezes Jibacoa Reviews

Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.2 of 5 41 reviews
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"Best for Snorkelling"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  larry  on Feb 18, 2011  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2011 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
301 people found this review helpful

First trip to Cuba, so was not expecting a whole lot. Hotel is a little older, but extremely clean and well kept. Food was to die for, as was the Snorkelling. Best snorkelling we have ever encountered and right out front.
Great service, not so busy, and really relaxing.

Room Number:
2146

Room Block:
6

Arrival:
Painless, and very friendly and helpful

Rooms:
Great, once you get used to a little bit of older fashioned furnishings

Restaurants and Bars:
Good, Bars excellent

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
well kept, always frindly staff around

Other Comments:
Nice place, but will be awhile before Cuba again, just not comfortable in communist setting.

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"Something seemed to be missing - Change is not always good"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 3.00 of 5

Posted by:  Swaava  on Nov 22, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Oct, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
280 people found this review helpful

This was my sixth stay at Breezes Jibacoa and there seemed to be some changes, particularly with the buffet and the food that were not always positive. The staff seemed to be working very hard to please the guests yet at times it was baffling as to understand why there appeared to be problems with food replenishment and tables not being reset. It appeared to me that bussing staff had been cut and the wait staff had to go into the kitchen with the dirty dish carts and bring out clean dishes. I thought that bussing staff had been used for this in the past, so wait staff were now unable to do the bussing and keep the tables set for the guests, causing delays sometimes as to available seating.

The toaster disappeared and trays of cold, often burnt, toast appeared from the kitchen. The warming trays have been replaced by pans and the food has tendancy to dry out in these. Please change things back the way they were.

The replenishment staff were also kept hustling but at times there was no carvery as we had experienced in the past, food had been depleted to completely empty trays and two nights the dessert bar (oh my suffering waistline) was bare while I was there. I can only assume that staff had been cut in the kitchen/dining area, and this being the commencement of the peak season, was a disappointment.

The beach bar restaurant was as pleasant as ever, especially the staff there who went out of their way to ensure guests were served promptly and politely. The hamburgers had been changed to preformed patties perhaps to ensure consistency but now some ingredient had been added at source that my system does not tolerate (likewise with Harveys and Burger King). This is unfortunate as I had always enjoyed the burgers in the past.

The piano bar was as enjoyable as ever, however with the low ceiling there should be sound baffles of some type to enable people to converse when it is crowded. The bar also ran out of a few items on two nights.
Reception ran efficiently but the money exchange on ocassion seemed to thik that you don't want your small change and does not offer it. Changing to 52.07 CUCs netted me 50 CUC until I insisted on full redemption. I do tip generously so I don't think that that staff should self-tip. Staff generally are gracious in accepting tips and o appreciate them even though the official policy is "no tipping".

Entertainment staff were tired from 4 weeks of Octoberfest but that is not an excuse for diminished activities for those guests who arrived just following. A few days there was little in the way of activities and no alternative in the event of inclement weather. A card tournament can be quickly formed, a billiards tournament can take place over a few days, and the disco transformed into an indoor entertainment area.

Rooms:
The rooms were as usual well taken care of and the staff generally attentive except for one day when we did not get a towel exchange (don't know why) but a call to reception had new towels in our room within 30 minutes. I know housekeepers have to hustle so an oversight is possible. Ants on the ground floor can be a problem if you are intolerant of them. If you keep food in your room it must stay in the fridge or else you will have unwanted visitors. Ants follow their senses and will find you out!

Restaurants and Bars:
Disco - I am afraid the same lament from prior visits. The DJ's need to realize that the Disco is for the guest's entertainment and not themselves.

Because the resort has such a large number of repeat guests means that the guest demographic is aging and music appropriate to the crowd is needed to inspire them to dance. Only when requested specifically did the DJ's play contemporary classics that the guests could dance to (that is what the disco is for - dancing, okay maybe drinking also) otherwise the music was mostly quick step Cuban pop/rock. When the former was played, the disco filled up and many people were dancing. When the latter Cubano music was played, the disco quickly emptied.
The disco should be for the guests enjoyment and if you want to entertain the guests, it is obvious to play music appropriate for the guests. I hope this is the last time I have to emphasize this.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Most grounds staff were hard working. One or two appeared to be more interested in guests, on the presumption of "gifting". Staff at this resort are extremely well taken care of by the guests and gifted in many ways with presents, money, and clothing. We weighed in at the same weight returning to Canada as when we went and we were over limit on alcohol (declared at Customs) on our return so you know what was left behind (wink).

The pool was clean and enjoyable as were the hot tubs that were well used.

The beach cleaning crew did an excellent job in spite of a few days of stormy weather that brough debris down from the trees and in from the ocean.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Security did an admirable job and was always on hand for any needs.

Guest services is commended on their receptions and being attentive to guest's needs.

Other Comments:
My review reflects my personal experience. Four years ago I would have given this resort a 4 to 4.5 star rating. This time I would have to rate it a 3.5 due to the dining experience issues that can easily be rectified through staff enhancement and ensuring food replenishment and table resetting are prompt.
Last year was the "good old days" for food quality and quantity.
Please, no preformed patties for the hamburgers or "Dougie burgers".
Finally, if the staff are working hard (with noted exceptions)then I must assume that management changes have caused concerns and only they can rectify them.

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"Good TYMES !!"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 3.00 of 5

Posted by:  Dewy  on Aug 28, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Oct, 2009 | Leisure | With Group
293 people found this review helpful

Arrival:
My girlfriend and four of my buddies went down for my birthday in Late October. I was anxious to arrive and settle in. This resort is an hour away from the airport and it felt like it took too long to arrive, as well when we arrived on the resort, it took a while to organize the rooms-It was agonizing as all I wanted to do was settle in. They did great us with a nice cold ice fruit punch --this was nice
Eventually we settled in

Rooms:
The room was decent--The AC was on-point. For Cuba, the bathroom was okay--but not as good as the hotel bathrooms in Canada, but ok --but it was ok! Our room was right by the pool (Front) and right by the beach (back)

Restaurants and Bars:
They have a piano Bar upstairs--(although the piano-player was a bit reluctant--we eventually convinced him to play)--we had a blast singing along with the piano They also have a club, beach bar, beach restaurant, buffet restaurant, pool bar an Italian restaurant and Cuban restaurant--NO COMPLAINTS

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The pool was good--
The hot tubs were okay (only two though)
The beach was good as well--the water had a lot of corel in it, not as smooth as i would want --but despite this, i spend most of my time on the beach and it was fun
There were groumd wasp (the dont bite) but they are a bit annoying

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The activities were real good-
Beach volleyball, pool volleyball, rent boats, sailing, tennis, basketball,

as well they have tours you May go on !

Other Comments:
This resort is secluded yet is an hour away from Havana and an hour away from Vera Doro.

You get the best of both worlds

If you’re a female, I would suggest you take toilet paper when you travel off the resort, as they may try to charge you for it
The rum is cheap!


I give this an overall rating of 3.5

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"Expectations Met"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  K  on May 30, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2010 | Leisure | With friend
295 people found this review helpful

Your Arrival:
Arrived 11pm. As there were only 3 of us leaving the airport for this resort, were driven by taxi instead of a bus. This was great as we got an intimate rundown of things we were seeing. Greeted warmly by reception and given keys to room as well as safe. Brought our own bags to room where we promplty left them and headed for drinks and beach.

Rooms:
Clean and cozy. Beds comfortable and plenty of pillows available. Lots of closet room and big enough bathroom. The only issue was A/C. After being on an all day tour of Havana when we arrived back to room at 2am it was hot. No A/C at all. Went to main desk in the am as room was stifling. Were told A/C was out in entire building and would be fixed. This was not the case. Found out from people next door that all of building 9 were being moved to new rooms. Had to go to the main desk to ask again, no one had come to let us know. Once we had new accommodations, after repacking and moving everything ourselves, no more issues. New room turned out to have a better view. First room was cleaned much better than 2nd with plenty of different towel art but none in 2nd room.

Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet was very good and had plenty of different choices. Wait staff were extremely friendly, fast and efficent, with or without tips. Beach grill had excellent chicken and fries. Hamburgers were also very good. All condiments were readily available at all times. Including ketchup, mustard, salt & pepper. We had been told to take such things with us but found it readily available everywhere we went, both on resort and off. Ate at the Italian a la carte only and food and service was great there as well.
Mostly visited the pool bar as spent a lot of time in pool area. Service was fast and never any lineups. Lobby bar was also good, staff not quite as friendly but drinks were great. Visited the disco one night and place pretty much cleared out at midnight. Music was fun and drinks readily available here as well.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Grounds are beautiful!!! Everything was immaculately clean at all times. Never any garbage or cigarette butts anywhere.
Pool was clean but shallow water only. Chairs readily available but must be there early if you wish to get a spot in the shade. Almost no one night time swims. Swam 2 nights there and both times were the only ones in the pool. Jacuzzis are clean, nice and relaxing. Never had to wait for them.
Beach was red flagged 4 out of 7 day stay there. Spent one day at the beach and had a real hard time finding a chair. Upon our meeting with the SunWing rep we were told resort was at capacity and that there were enough beach chairs for each guest. This was definitely not the case. Snorkelling gear as well as paddle boats, sail boats etc readily available. Coral reef and fish everywhere. As a first time snorkeller it was nice to be able to do it in shallow water. Learned from other guests that fish enjoyed being hand fed fruit such as apples and bananas.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Nightly shows everynight at 9:15pm and ending about 10:30. Great fun and also involving guests in some way. Especially enjoyed the aqua ballet. Gift shops sold everything you may need at very comparable prices to stores off resort. Internet available for extra but did not use it so cannot remember the cost.
Lots of activities to do off resort. Did 3 tours: the Havana special, Catamaran and the Matanzas tour. All were enjoyable but the Havana tour was very long and if ever was to do this again would definitely go by taxi. Not enough time to shop the Havana market (among other things), were given 45 mins and this was a huge place and 45 mins was just not enough time to take it all in. Highly recommend the Matanzas tour. Beautiful area and lots of different activities especially enjoyed swimming in the cave.

Other Comments:
This resort is great if you are looking for a relaxing vacation without the late night party atmosphere. We saw virtually no one after 1am. Spent nights on the beach with drinks entirely by ourselves.
The staff are friendly and tips of any sort were greatly appreciated. Never any lineups for drink services and most times there was plenty of seating for the buffet. Only once did we stand around with a plate of food in hand while waiting on a table.

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"beautiful, comfortable & great food"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Joanne  on Apr 27, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Oct, 2009 | Leisure | With Group
286 people found this review helpful

We went to this resort last Oct for the first time and we loved it so much we are heading back there this coming Oct. 7 of us went last time and we have 16 already for this year.
Trip to Havana was a bit depressing, you will be approached by many begging for money and clothes, we did visit their market of about 50 stalls selling about 5 stalls worth of different things, to be honest the prices at the hotel store were cheaper or the same and they had a nice variety to choose from. There are a ton of old cars to see in Havana. We tried an authentic cuban meal, although realizing that they were proud of their best food offering, we would not wish to repeat that experience. Many buildings with ornate balustrade. Some buildings have had scaffolding on them for so many years they are now grown over with vegetation making the scaffolding part of the building.
Food at the hotel was wonderful especially lobster night on Wed nights.

Your Arrival:
fast & furious, have your passport #, flight name & number ready, upon receiving your welcome packet, book your restaurants right then.

We travelled at night last time but you wait all day to leave at both ends, this year we will travel in the morning.

Rooms:
We stayed in a gardenview room, no different that a pool view room other than we looked slightly away from the pool. We noticed previous advice on trip advisor to book a 2nd story room as there are less critters. Upon our arrival we had a cookarocha in our bathroom which we killed and never saw another one all week, our friends also had one in their livingroom and after disposing of it they never saw another one all week. Their boys had a room of their own and they never saw one all week. I did take a can of insect repellant which I never needed because their were no mosquitos so I sprayed inside the dressers, closet, under the bed and around the patio door. There are no screens on the patio door which is how I think the bugs must have gotten in. we had a couple of big beautiful palm trees out side our balconies which provided bird song and shade to us.

Restaurants and Bars:
The main restaurant is where we went for all breakfast and some dinners. Chairs are so so for comfort. Food is different than Canada and the salad bar is more of a been and veggie stand, they do not have lettuce or salad dressing. Home made soups were great. Most nights were a themed menue, we loved the lobster on Wed night, and the filet mignon from the Italian restaurant. Did not really care for the cuban restaurant other than my friend liked her shrimp cup & the wine. We ate lunch everyday at the beach restaurant and I ate their spicy chicken leg and fries almost every day. Ummm. Piano bar is upstairs from main lobby and although nice atmosphere there is no piano player for the huge piano. All the bars were accomodating to try to make any drink you wanted. Liquor is very strong. Nice slush drinks at every bar. My friend recommends the spanish coffee, even for breakfast.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach was lovely to walk on, you may see the odd crab poking up or skittering along and you may even see a washed up blue jelly fish DO NOT TOUCH A JELLY FISH, lots of shad at the beach with man made umbrellas and natural trees. Snorkelling equipment at end of beach to borrow, in great condition. Pool is huge and water is quite cool but easy to get used to. We enjoyed a couple of impromptu volleyball games that were non competitive and I don't think even had rules. Two smallish hot tubs that fit 4 comfortably, 8 if you're all friends. Lots of shade by the pool with covered cabanas. No floaties there for the pool but many people brought their own. We grabbed a table and chair set from the courtyard area and put it under the cabana with the loungers. The loungers are not the most comfortable and I think dollar store floats would fix that. the grounds are well cared for, a few stray cats and dogs running around. Staff is friendly and accomodating. Many beautiful flowers and coloured folliage.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
There is a dedicated group running the social program and we opted to play some games but could have been busy with many activities but opted not to.

We did the day trip to havana on our own with a taxi booked through the front desk. The guided bus tour might be better.

We heard the rented mopeds are fun and the guide rides along with you.

We also heard that there is a jeap tour and that you ride through a river, have lunch out, ride in a boat and reurn in a bus. Sounds good we will check this out.

Other Comments:
The massage hut on the beach is awesome. $35 for an hour.

checked for Dialysis:
A family member wanted to come with us this year but when we tried to get info re dialysis in Havana and we could not get any, we tried many sources for several months.

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"Wanna Bang for the Peso ! ( Kinda Short but Sweet ) -- > SuperClubs-Breezes-Jibacoa CUBA"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  The Derry's  on Apr 8, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Apr, 2010 | Leisure | Family and Kids
308 people found this review helpful

Travelled from Gander, NL., Canada on the 31st of March 2010 and flew out of Cuba on the 7th of April 2010.

I used a very good agent at a.buckle@tpi.ca who was patient and found us a very good deal & resort combination.
Sunwing was beyond our expectations. Flights ahead of schedule both south and northbound, great onboard staff, meals, ammenities and on the ground resort personel available 6 days a week to address any concerns. Takes a private airline to set the benchmark eh?

Super resort 4.5 / 5 and very good value for the $$ money. No kids under 14 years of age permitted. It only has 250 rooms thus no line ups or crush of people for a beach chair, meals, drink, etc.

This resort is not on the Varadaro peninsula. In fact, it is west of Varadaro in "Jibacoa Bay" (on north side of Cuba aprox 80 miles south of Miami. Also known for some of the best coral reef snokeling)about 1 hr by comfortable air conditioned full size charter bus from the airport. That suited us just fine, a resort ~ with privacy. The captial of Cuba - Havana - is only 1 hr away, again west, from this resort which we found convenient for excursions. One gets to see the country side enroute to exploring Cuba!

* If you want to party like stray dog or cat ~ this place is not for you *
Relax to the max or pedal to your own speed ~ and hit the bunk by 11PM or 2 AM (if you enjoy the disco)then you've found it ~

Good food, clean rooms, beverages of ones' choice, safe enviroment, and varied clientele.

Your Arrival:
I made 2 boo boo's ... #1 I failed to heed the previous posts and did not bring a thermal mug for beverages. A MUST have, for both hot and esp., cold beverages. Saves repeated trips back and forth to the bar. Beer / hard drinks come in a 6 oz plastic cup on each endless serving. Oh, and for smokers (I am not) cigarettes are .60 cents a pack. No tax on anything, the sticker is what you pay.


#2 Take a hoodie/fleece or 3 season jacket and long pants/sweats for the nightly outdoor stage performances on the resort. You won't want to miss them ! Evenings, despite being a low of 18C, with the wind and your sun burn can feel cool. Ironically enough ~ have a fall outfit at the ready and in your suitcase if you want to be comfortable and enjoy a cold beverage at the same time.

Nice to know :

If you are a 'face cloth' person (we were not) you will need to bring your own, only towels of the standard size (ample) are provided.

Rooms:
Cleaned daily.

Again are clean, modern, comforable (for the time spent in them) and a good night sleep after a day in the hot Cuban sun. Rooms have a key locking safe, small fridge 2'x2'x2', a hairdryer, and a converter from 220Volts to CDN voltage, all provided free. TV's are on satelitte 20+ channels.

NFLD'ers even get NTV news on channel #36 ~ daily.

Restaurants and Bars:
Buffet - great.

Most evening there is musical entertainment. These groups could easliy be cover bands in Canada and amass a small fortune. The breakfast egg omelettes are remarkable (with or without the yolk). Full variety of hot/cold food, soup, fruit, if you can't get it here ~ stay home and eat TV dinners.

Beach bar - wicked fries (I like them crispy, cheese burgers x2 or x3 patties, chicken & pizza - fill your boots - justifies the selection of no egg yolk at breakfast, see ? )

Both the Italian and Cuban restaurants are good and formal in the sense of a dining experience. With two teenage boys, or big eaters, don't expect to "dine and dash" You are entitled to visit each only once in your 7 day stay.

If I had to pay out of pocket what my two 'seagull' sons ate during the week at this resort ~ I would be a pauper.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Clean, large pool and two jacuzzi tubs on the same deck.

Grounds are tended to daily by ground personnel so no coconuts fall on YOUR 'coconut'. No issues.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We, as a family or four with two teenage boys 18&16, had a grand time at this resort. They boys bumped into some Albertan male buddies, were maintenance free and us secure in them being safe / well-behaved for our stay. They attended the nightly outdoors theatre shows with us that were put off by the resort @ 9:10 PM to 10:30 PM, and then slinked into the disco to socialize, sans parents,afterward.

As parent were never concerned about thier safety on the resort or swimming. Most here are Canucks and look out for each other I must say!

#1 two boys did resort scuba diving x2 $30 each for 1.5 hours , #2 my wife and I had a massage $20 each for 1/2 hour each, and #3 did a hike up a mountain (free by from resort), the base of which the resort is situated upon.

#4 We all did an excursion to Havana by taxi vs a bus and the driver walked us around old/new Havana/huge flea market, spoke good English and had an exceptional knowledge of his countries history. Regretably, I've got my doubts most Canadians could recite a similar history lesson. He could also press the flesh to get us bumped up in a lineup in this busy city. It cost 4 of us $70 peso's total or about $100 bucks CDN - we left at 8:30 AM and home at 5:30 PM ~ awesome. Just enquire around.

#5 I rented one 2-seater scooter on the resort for about $15 for three hours and booted around at my own speed. Went to St. Cruz nearby and took photo's of that small town about 20 km west of the resort. A photographers ~ mecca.

#6 We did the Costa Blanca catamaran excursion, the only excursion we went through the Sunwing representative to book. We did the $69 dollar tour to just "watch a dolphin show" (don't pay double to swim with dolphin's unless you choose) At 7:45 AM the bus departed from our resort to the Varadaro peninsula, a nice air conditioned drive to get there, only 1 hr, but scenic . At 9:00 AM we left Varadero peninsula on the catarman and steamed to set anchor at 10:45 AM and did some group snorkeling. All equipment provided but if you have your snorkeling gear bring it will save you "water time" ! Lots of room for gear/kit bags on board. How big ? we are talking a 64' boat here folks ~ no slouch of a craft. All drinks, free. At about 1:30 PM we arrived at Waterworld, an island, where we docked and swam in the whitest, warmest of beaches, shopped at a market set up for the day and had lunch; lobster, crab, chicken, favorite beverage, ~ again fill your boots.
A very good tour and good value.

Again, you could do all of the above, some of it or, none of it ~ tasters choice :)

Other Comments:
Bring stuff for the kids and adults........

Cubans love baseball hats, esp., the one with the ProFit head band. These folks (from walking to the gereatric ward) practice baseball with everything from a junk of palm tree and a rock, to a bat and ball, if fortunate enough.

Also medicine (and oddly disposable diapers) are very expensive or not attainable. I regret not bringing more "stuff", giving money is one thing but despite that Cubans often cannot attain what they "need"

My suggestion, when you have your next visit with your family physician, ask for few/bag full of the sample pharmacutical products that medical pracitioners get from drug representatives and take them to Cuba. Check the visitor site, one is only allowed 10, get this, "kilograms" per person.

Since our stay was over the Easter break, and Cubans are Catholic, my wife brought down Easter Bunnies and on the moped tour we went to the hardest spots (not crime ridden - very little crime/drugs in Cuba)stopped and gave out items to the kids. Not one melted !


The DERRY's - NFLD


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"Can see why people return."

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Nova Scotia  on Apr 1, 2010  >  4 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Mar, 2010 | Leisure | With friend
271 people found this review helpful


Your Arrival:
Getting there.

Sunwing - slight delays on both ends, otherwise not a bad trip, food was typical airline fare. Beer at the airport was selling for a whopping $4 cuc each. Bus ride from Airport about an hour long and included a stop at a Pina Colada stand along the way, a nice treat.

Check in

Arrived around noon, not surprisingly rooms not ready until 2:30 (there is a 3 pm check in), left luggage in lobby, headed to beach. Front desk staff were outstanding in comparison to other resorts I have been to. Friendly and helpful. Pick up your towel cards, safe lock and key, make your 2 ala carte reservations and grab your room keys. There is thankfully no wrist bracelet in use at this resort.

Rooms:
Rooms

We had an ocean view room on the ground floor. Problems here with locking patio and balcony doors. Bottom floor rooms had flimsy pins that were used to secure the sliding doors, second floor rooms were somewhat less secure. Rooms had all the expected amenities, plus a voltage converter which seemed to need an adapter of some sort. I think that's what it was, I didn't need it. Lots of hot water and good pressure. Soap, shampoo and conditioner is provided. We arrived to two twin beds, followed the next day by a 3rd twin bed... why? I dunno. Asked to have it removed, it was still there when we left. Want the towels changed, place them in the tub, want the sheets changed, place a provided card on the bed. Beds were firm but I like them that way, pillows were fine. Mini fridge with 2 small bottles of water provided and you have to refill them at a bar. I preferred to fill mine at the beach bar where you can fill them yourself. No clock provided, but there is a cd player. Small ants crawling around which is typical of a ground floor room, also no-seeums that seemed to hover down low and around behind the curtains. I think they left the confines of the curtains at night to attack my wife as she slept, fortunately I was not to their liking. Spoke to other guests who experienced similar bites. Mistook them for bedbugs, which is a common mistake I think.

Restaurants and Bars:
Bars

Favorite is definately the beach bar, All workers here are fantastic. Least favorite was the pool bar where a couple of the guys working there during the day needed a swift kick in the butt for complacency, so sorry to inconvenience them. Lobby bar could get slow with lineups, but thems the breaks. Piano bar was a nice atmosphere... sans piano player most times. All bars had most popular drinks and seemed well stocked. Disco was, well, what you made it. We had a few laughs there.

Restaurants

Buffet was ok, as most reviews state the food is often on the cool side. I didn't eat as much as I usually do. Omelets, pastas and desserts were nice. Lobster night was suprisingly good. It's tough to get a glass of water at the buffet, seems they don't stock it at the server's stations. I'd say maybe half of the time I asked for water, I didn't get it. No problem getting wine, juice or coffee though. Italian ala carte was the best of the two, the steak was done very nicely. The Cuban ala carte, well, not bad but not great. I had the chicken dish which was a bit bland. The beach restaurant was great for snacks. We all liked the burgers, chicken and fries they served there.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Grounds

This is where this resort really shines. Immaculate, well groomed and simply beautiful. Nothing too far apart, easy walking.

Beach

Yep, snorkeling is good. Beach is a little rocky for waders and swimmers though. Two red flag days out of eight due to man-o-wars. Lots of shade if you need it, long stretch of beach to walk. There are some beggers around but they are not aggressive.

Pool

Good size, refreshingly cool but shallow. I don't get it, an adult only resort with a shallow pool. It's a 24 hour pool and I am guessing it uses a saltwater chlorine generator system. No awful chlorine smell, no burning eyes. There are two types of tile around the pool, the darker tile is very slippery when wet, or when your feet are wet. Shade can be tough to secure on red flag days. There are 2 hot tubs in the vicinity that folks seemed to like.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Shows

We thought they were quite entertaining, some really funny nights. Enjoyed the magician. The dancers looked quite young and I thought the clothes they wore sometimes were a bit risque for such young girls. I think that thinking comes from having young daughters myself. Shows were very well attended, an indication of the entertainment value, I think.

Tours

Take the free hike up the hill and farm tour, it's a nice walk and very interesting with a few chuckles thrown in. We took the Havana Tour including the rum museum and cigar factory. Enjoyed the cigar factory tour but really, we should have saved a few bucks and taken a private cab tour. It would have been less rushed. In any event, Havana is a must when you are that close.

Robberies

There was only one robbery at the resort while we were there... that we knew of. A couple had their room entered while they were sleeping and had some stuff stolen. Hard to believe... until you see how the second floor sliding doors do not lock. From what we heard, staff handled the situation very professionally as did the police.

Other Comments:
Other tips

-We found the prices for things you might need were cheaper at the shop near the CVJ.
-Locate the Italian restaurant well before your reservation, it's sort of hidden behind the buffet and above the Cuban restaurant.
-Take an insulated travel mug!!
-Wouldn't hurt to take a can of bugspray, the little no-seeums pack a mean bite for some people. Spray it around the door and behind the curtains.
-Staff appreciated tips, but really didn't seem to demand them.
-There's a good resort map near the lobby desk, find your room before heading out with your luggage. We saw some folks wandering aimlessly dragging bags.
-If you have a late departure, you have to turn your towel in. You can make a deposit of $15cuc to keep it until 5pm.
-There is a hospitality room provided for you to clean up for a late flight, they use a 20 minute per person guideline for it's use. A queue seems to form around 5pm for its use and grows quickly.
-Try on all clothing before you buy it, it seems sized very small... or I gained a lot of weight while there.
-Don't let the atmosphere at the resort lull you into a false sense of security, remain as vigilant in protecting yourself and your belongings as anywhere else you may go.

Overall

I can see while so many people return to this place. Once you figure out a few little things, you can get into a routine of pure comfort, relaxation, good eating and as much fun as you care to have, all in a beautiful setting. I would return.

Questions? tomaz61@yahoo.ca

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"A perfect little gem of a resort! 4.5* in our opinion."

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Stephanie  on Mar 15, 2010  >  4 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Feb, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
303 people found this review helpful

I’m going to preface my review by recommending those reading these reviews to go by reviews of guests who stayed during the time period you plan to go. Resorts change with the seasons. Low season/much lower prices attract a younger, more boisterous clientele; high season/much higher prices attracts a much older, quieter group of guests. We have only stayed during high season and, over the 10 weeks we’ve spent at the resort, the majority of guests were mid 40’s to early 70’s. You couldn’t get further from party central! So, if you are reading this review and plan to go during the summer/fall, or during some special “promotion” don’t expect the same atmosphere I’ll be describing.
We return to Breezes Jibacoa, each year, late January or early February for two week stays. This last visit was our 5th so it’s pretty clear we like the place. I would not recommend this resort to just anybody and I’ve steered some people I know away from going there because, knowing them, knew the resort would not “fit” them. The resort is relatively remote to any towns. It sits halfway between Varadero and Havana and the closest town of any size is Santa Cruz del Norte. To get there, you’ll need to take a taxi unless you rent a scooter, at the resort, and go yourself. If you do decide to rent, make sure you are aware of your liability should you have an accident. We fell in love with this little gem just because it doesn’t have all the glitz of Varadero. Within hours of our first arrival, 5 years ago, we knew we had found what we had long been looking for: small, intimate, lovely surroundings, friendly staff, no kids, clean, well maintained, efficient and to top it off, ocean view rooms with views to die for! Did I mention no kids?

Your Arrival:
Departed Vancouver at 10pm, on time, via Air Transat with Club Class seating. Since everyone on board was tired, it was a quiet night flight down to Varadero. We arrived around 6:45 am and whizzed through Customs to collect our bags. We had just grabbed baggage carts and gone over to the carousel when our bags started coming through. They had “priority” tags on them due to Club Class but I certainly wasn’t expecting this to mean anything but there they were! We were first out of the arrivals area and to the bus. That’s where things went downhill. Because we were booked with Nolitours, we had to travel to the resort on the same bus as those staying at neighboring Cameleon Villas resort. That wasn’t the problem. Sitting on the bus for 60 minutes waiting for 1 more passenger to show up was the problem! Turns out he wasn’t going to turn up until the next day because he wasn’t on the flight but his wife wasn’t bright enough to advise the tour rep until we’d sat there for an hour. When she finally coughed up this info, there were a lot of angry grumblings from the occupants on the bus!
All that was forgotten once we got off the bus at Breezes Jibacoa. There were only ourselves and 1 other couple getting off so check in was very quick. Unfortunately, the resort was fully booked so we could not get into our room until later. This was not unexpected as we’ve had early morning arrivals, in the past, and were prepared for the eventuality. We left our bags in reception and went and had breakfast and then went to the pool and relaxed, with books and drinks, on loungers. While we were having lunch, the bellman came and told us our room was ready (around 1:15 pm) and he would take our bags down for us.

Rooms:
We always book ocean view and, after the first year, book the Tropical ocean view suite. Much to our surprise and great pleasure, we were given the same suite we’ve occupied each previous visit. It was just like coming home. We were in building #4 suite 2130, just to the left of the Ranchon. We love the double sized balcony and the stunning views. On the balcony is a seating area with 2 large wooden chairs and a table and, in front of the bedroom, 2 wooden loungers with cushions and a smaller table. We spent many relaxing hours out on the balcony “people watching” or just reading and, periodically, entertaining new friends for pre-dinner cocktails and appies.
Coming in the door of the suite, you enter a hallway which has a large closet on one wall with sliding, mirrored doors and contained within is an ironing board and iron. Across from the closet is a large bathroom with sink and large counter and toilet. We kept the converter on the counter in this room. From the hallway, you walk into the dining/kitchen/living room. In here you will find a small kitchenette with sink, upper and lower cupboards, 2 burner stove and fridge. I've never used the stove because, after all, I'm at an AI so why would I cook? A glass topped table with 4 chairs
separates the kitchenette from the sitting area. Here you will find two large rattan chairs and ottoman and large coffee table. There are large, matching consoles on which sit a t.v. and combo c.d/radio unit. You have sliding glass doors through which to access one end of the balcony and the views from the room are breathtaking.

To the right of the dining table is the door to the bedroom. This is a very large room and contains a king sized bed, night stands, a desk + chair, 2 large dressers with plenty of storage room, a rattan loveseat and ottoman. The bedroom has a t.v., also. Another set of double glass doors access the other end of the balcony and the loungers. We would leave these doors open, at night, so that we could hear the ocean…very soothing. There is a short hall, off the bedroom with another large closet on one wall and full bathroom across from it. In the closet you will find more drawers for storage topped with the safe. There were extra blankets on the top shelf of the closet. I just want to add that we had no complaints with the bed. We prefer a “firm” mattress and found the one in our room very comfortable.
The bathroom was made up of a sink and lots of counter space, toilet and bath. I loved the bath because it was actually long enough for me to relax in without having to scrunch myself up and lots of hot water to soak away the fatigue of hours of walking around in Old Havana.
I can try and describe the room we occupied but my attached photos do a much better job.

Restaurants and Bars:
Love the Ranchon for lunch and the only thing we haven’t tried are the hot dogs but, from watching others, they look like they are as good as everything else on the menu. My favourite is the grilled fish with French fries. Drinks are great and the wait staff very friendly. Take a thermal coffee type mug for drinks to avoid using the small plastic glasses that are just a pain.

We prefer the patio area of the buffet restaurant because we want to enjoy the outdoors, when we are in the tropics, not sit inside. I really like the fact that smoking is NOT allowed in this area anymore. In fact, this trip we noticed that they had made all of the lobby, lower foyer areas SMOKE FREE except for the very lowest level just before you step out onto the long walkway to the beach. Smokers beware because they do enforce it. We were chatting, one evening, with a couple up by the doors where you enter the lobby. The guy lit up a smoke and within minutes an employee was over advising him he would have to put it out or move to the lower area where smoking was permitted.
As for the food, there is plenty of choice and I didn’t try anything I didn’t enjoy. The soups are great! One night they had a rabbit casserole that was delicious. The only complaint I have, and I’m not alone, is that hot food could be hotter. That being said, I think that’s a Cuban “thing” because, even in Havana, getting hot food, well, hot, was a rarity. We do the ala cartes but prefer the buffet for it’s cheerful atmosphere and opportunity to share meals with new friends we’ve made during our stay.

The piano bar is our favourite place to relax after dinner and this trip we actually got to listen to a very talented pianist. The 24 hour lobby bar is always popular and they make great cappuccinos. We pick up a bottle of Bailey’s, at Vancouver duty free and, each morning around 6:30 am, I’d head up to the lobby, with our mugs, for a couple of cappuccinos and back to the room to enjoy them on the balcony with a shot of Bailey’s. A great way to start the day and watch the resort come to life

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
This beach does not lack for shady areas whether it be man made palapas or natural growth. Loungers are plentiful and, thankfully, towel wars aren’t an issue. There’s lots of loungers and shady areas at the pool, also. I find the beach in front of Breezes Jibacoa to be nicer and cleaner than the one further down in front of Cameleon Villas. The current runs in that direction so most of the flotsam ends up on Cameleon Villas beach area. You can take a long walk, along the beach, past Cameleon Villas to the far point and beyond, if you wish. When you are walking the beach or just on the beach at the resort, I would strongly advise against giving items to Cubans who are on the beach asking for things from guests. It is not a problem, at Breezes, yet, but, with encouragement of the wrong kind, it could be. They are working you so please don’t encourage this behaviour.
In the area of the beach, between the two resorts, artisans set up their wares and you can pick up some art work at reasonable prices. We take our own snorkeling gear and when the flag is the right colour (green or yellow) we make the most of it and get out snorkeling and looking for new areas to explore. This is one of the highlights of this resort but please DON’T STEP on the reef and DON’T FEED THE FISH!

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
Check with your tour rep if you are interested in off resort tours as they have many to offer. If you need something to do with your time, you’ll find a shuffle board and chess set (mega sized) at the pool, tennis courts, bocce balls, pool table, volleyball at the beach and bingo games. Check the bulletin board between the lobby and buffet restaurant for daily activies. The hike up the hill to the look out is Mon., Wed., and Fri. at 9am and well worth it for the views. If you plan to do it, flip flops are NOT the footwear of choice but I’ve seen folks set off in them!

Other Comments:
So, another stay at Breezes Jibacoa is but a wonderful memory and, once again, we were not disappointed. I should mention that, this time around, we noticed a major increase in the number of British guests. When we first started going, it was predominantly Canadian but this time around it was about 60/40 Canadians and Brits with a smattering of other nationalities. We’ve always found this a very easy resort to get to know other guests and socialize. This resort is popular for weddings and not surprising with the gazebo and lovely grounds leading onto the beach. It’s a bride’s dream setting.
I hope you enjoy my photos; they tell the story.

Photos: http://s103.photobucket.com/albums/m157/cigarbreak/Breezes%20Jibacoa/?action=view¤t=87fd693e.pbw

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"If the weather had been better, we'd have enjoyed our stay immensely"

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Lisa and Grant from London Ontario  on Mar 9, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Mar, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
263 people found this review helpful

Over all, we enjoyed the resort and its amenities.

Your Arrival:
As a honeymooning couple, we were delighted to find that our room had been upgraded from pool view to ocean view upon check-in. However, although the brochure said "complimentary bottle of champagne" it never arrived. We had to remind the lobby staff twice and, on our last evening following the second reminder, we were told there was a bottle at the lobby counter for us (no one was available to deliver it). No one offered to take our bags to our rooms when we arrived, so we just shlepped them over ourselves.

Rooms:
Spacious and clean rooms with everything you need. Bed was a little uncomfortable (hard) but the room was otherwise fine.

Restaurants and Bars:
We felt that, overall, the food was just average, but there was always a lot of it and it was tasty at times. (Note: I don't recommend ordering beef in any form other than hamburgers. It had a strange spongy texture that we did not enjoy). Great burgers, fries, and pizza at the beach bar (not to mention a nice Pina Colada and Margarita). Be sure to bring insulated drink containers or you get dinky plastic cups. Good Spanish and Jamaican coffee in the piano bar upstairs.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Unfortunately, when we went the first week of March we had red flag days every day. That meant no snorkeling or swimming in the ocean, which were twp of our must-do activities. We did manage to get a few nice sunny days and enjoyed the beautiful grounds. The pool is large and clean but many commented that it was a tad chilly. With the windy days we experienced, we ventured into the hot tub on one occasion (could be a fair deal hotter) but not the main pool.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We took the hike up the mountain across from the resort, a free activity that provides a peek into the lives of local farmers and a spectacular aerial view of the resort. We also did the Havana tour (tour of Colonial Havana and a dinner and evening at the Tropicana). A beautiful city with lovely architecture to see and an interesting history. The show was very entertaining.

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"Had a great time."

Breezes Jibacoa
User Rating:  Breezes Jibacoa Review: 4.00 of 5

Posted by:  Nat  on Feb 5, 2010  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2010 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
255 people found this review helpful


Your Arrival:
Smooth. No line up.

Rooms:
Functional and clean. Not alot of storage for your clothes.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Nice pool. Always people working on the grounds maintenance.

Other Comments:
Hi. We just returned from 10 days at Breezes Jibacoa on Jan 31, 2010. First time in Cuba. We had great weather and for a smaller resort I think it was good. We stayed in Bldg. 13, which faces the pool, and if you are on the 1st floor it’s great for running in and out. Suggest the following if you go there:
Facecloths – They don’t have them, so take one if want to use one.
Bars of soap, shampoo, pens, pencils (lots of them) – the staff are very grateful to receive any of these items, as they are expensive for them in relation to their monthly wage.
For animal lovers – Please take a small bag of cat food. There are several very friendly cats that seem to be surviving on what they can get from visitors. I did “adopt” one while there (she was a small grey tabby with a smallish pointed head like a Siamese) and after 2 days, she finally quit eating every meal as if it was her last. I passed her “care” on to others when I left and hope to hear from someone that she is still there and doing ok. You will know her, as she wanders around the pool area for a snack or just a nice rub of her head. First thing in the morning is when she is looking for her breakfast.

They are very conscientious about towel/bathmat inventory; so don’t throw bath towels out or in with pool towels. As a matter of fact, I’d take a quick visual check each day of what you have for towels and if it is different, let the maid know. We didn’t get our bath mat replaced after a day or two and it was no big deal (just used 1 of the towels) except 2 or 3 days after that the maid asked where we had put it.

Havana is a must see for the beautiful architecture. We took a horse and carriage ride; it’s a good way to cover the city (initially) and then you get a sense of where you want to wander on foot.

Had a request for English as a Second Language (ESL) books; so anyone with access to these might want to make some copies and/or take any that you have available.

I don’t think you get the variety of food like I’ve seen in the Mayan Riviera or Punta Cana; it is more basic but certainly what we had was pretty good.

The people are very friendly and try to please and we would certainly return. It is a smaller, quieter resort where you start to recognize your neighbours and say hello.

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