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Oasis Las Morlas

January 2008
It was the bomb, there is nothing bad I can say about this hotel. The staff were so friendly and willing to help ant guest it didn't matter what the guest wanted or needed they were always greeted with a great big friendly smile. I will be coming back in about 6 months and I'm going right back to that hotel I will not stay at another because I'm sure the other hotels are good but this one, words can not describe how we were treated, like one big happy family. Yamir, Reynoldo, Zenia, Nana and Maria we miss you already and we just got home.
Oasis Las Morlas

January 2007
my 18 yr old daughter and i spent a week at riu las morlas from dec 16-22.

this is a small, intimate resort.

we found all the staff, the front desk, the maid, the dining rm etc...to be very friendly and helpful.

the entire resort was very well kept and clean. our room was basic but had everything that we needed.lots of hot water,great water pressure,lots of towels etc... the beach was awesome but more windy than i expected.not sure if this was due to the time of year or if it is always so windy in varadero.we never did use the pool. this time of year not a problem getting a palapa and chairs any time of day.

our only disappointment at this resort was the food. we have been to mexico many times and to dominican republic 6 times. i always wonder how people can complain about food at a buffet. there is always so much to chose from.i think that besides the food catering mostly to europeans the problem was the size of the buffet due to the size of the resort. that is, if 20% of a large buffet is something that you might like to eat then when you have 20% of a small buffet it leaves you a lot less choices. we found a lot of the food to be extremely greasy and mostly not hot.the way it works at this resort is the buffet is open for breakfast and supper. there are two seating times for supper. 630 and 830.we found that arriving at the begining of seating time we had better luck. more variety and food warmer. the beach grill is open for lunch if the weather is good. we weren't terribly impressed. yes there are hot dogs, weiners sitting in water until they are soggy and white. hamburgers were pretty good. fries good if you got a fresh batch. sometimes just cabbage at the salad bar, no lettuce.dessert choices not nearly as extensive at this resort as others i have been to. did like the ice cream and cookies. cakes all seemed the same with just different food coloring. we are very glad that we went to the bulk barn and brought a supply of trail mix, nuts and bolts etc.. .

there is a double decker bus for tourists that departs regularly from across the street. for $5 pesos per person you can tour all of varadero, takes about 2 hrs roundtrip. you can get on and off this bus unlimited times as long as you keep your ticket. a great way to see what is around you and a cheap way to get to the markets.

the markets are amazing. lots of different things available to buy that we have not seen in mexico or dom. rep.and quite cheap. what was most amazing to us was the cuban people. there was none of the begging and following you around like other countries, none of the cheapy cheapy, almost free stuff. if you asked the vendors for a price they gave it to you but then left you alone for you to decide if you wanted it or not. shopping at the markets was a very pleasant experience.

we also took a horse and carriage one day and got a great price ,$5 for two people. our rep had told us to be careful as they will tell you a price and then at the end of the ride will say was double that, that price quoted was for one only. we didn't find that to be the case for us but something to be aware of.

i would suggest that people make sure that they take enough cash with them. we didn't . we hadn't planned on spending much for souvenirs and then got a bit carried away buying leather etc... we never did find a bank machine anywhere. we had to go to a bank right beside the hotel to get a visa cash advance. quite serious business. you are questioned by the security guard at the door just to get in. our scotiabank card was good but beware, many cards are not. any that are affiliated with the u.s. aren't accepted. we tried to use our visa card at the airport duty free but the phone lines were down. a woman behind me in line said that she had tried to use her credit card in town at a store and was unable to use it due to phone lines as well. ? because of xmas season or it this is a regular problem there.

all in all we enjoyed our trip. liked our hotel except for the food. we would return to this hotel again if the price was right as it was this time. got a great deal booking a month ahead , only $480 plus taxes. can't get any better than that. i would of certainly been disappointed had i paid the regular $1200 or so.
Oasis Las Morlas

May 2006
My daughter and I stayed at this resort from April 9 - 16, 2006 and had the most wonderful time. It was a 3.5 star resort, but I would have rated it higher. It is a very small, quaint resort, close to the beach. The rooms were standard, nothing spectacular like at Barcelo Marina Palace, but they were very clean.

I found the food to be as good as at Breezes, Varadero and BCM, there was just less of a selection, but I was always able to find something I liked to eat.

There was a bar close to the pool and one very close to the beach.

I loved the entertainment staff and found them to be very friendly. I am not much of a night hawk, but my daughter went out with the entertainment staff each night after 11 pm show to various clubs off the resort, they went bowling in Varadero one night (pictures I saw showed it was like stepping back into 1959), etc.

I would highly recommend this resort and plan on returning in November.
Oasis Las Morlas

April 2005
Just returned from the Riu Las Morlas on March 14th 2005. It is a small hotel but very personal and we had a great time.

Cleanliness: This hotel was super clean-no issues at all with the room or the rest of the hotel. Always saw staff cleaning inside and out. I did not see any bugs during our stay.

Food: There is only one restaurant at the Las Morlas. It is open for breakfast and dinner and it is buffet. Lunch is served (buffet as well) down by the beach in the grill area. The buffets all consit of a variety of things-you can get any style of egg or great omlets for breakfast, lots of fruits bread etc. Lunch consisted of salads, fruits, great desserts, hot dogs, hamburgers, fries and then a different rice, pasta, or grilled item. Dinner also had salad fruits, pasta bar, a roast of some sort (the pork and beef were very good!) many seafood dishes, always fish and of course great desserts. The staff in the restaurant were wonderful to us. Ihosavny makes beautiful flowers from knapkins and Carey makes a great grasshopper from leaves. They treated us like royalty. Please spoil them too!!! We never went hungry and always enjoyed our meals.

Bars: There are 3 bars at the Las Morlas. The lobby bar makes excellent drinks and is open later than the rest. The beach bar is small but is great and handy for beer or mixed drinks while on the beach-not far to go at all. The pool bar is the busiest and makes great fancy drinks-pina coladas etc..

Room: The room (330) was very comfortable-2 three quarter beds put together. They were firm and I had no problem. They give you one long pillow that you can fold in half to give yourself that 2 pillow feeling. There is a bar fridge in the room that is restocked every second day- water, Cristal beer, coke and orange pop. We never ran out as we only used it when we were actually in the room. You can access water (bottled) at all of the bars. There is also a large bottle of rum in the room when you arrive-not the best but if you pour lightly and add some coke it makes a nice drink. Olga cleaned out room every day we were there and made great towel art. TV worked fine and we were always able to find a movie on somewhere. Big closet with a safe, lots of drawers. The bathroom was very nice-always clean, lots of toilet paper, fresh towels and no problems with water pressure. The room was a good size but in all honesty we were never in it other than to sleep-pack or unpack. Nice balcony too with a great view of the pool area and some ocean.

Beach: I cannot say enough about how beautiful the beach is. The sand was white and soft. The water color is too hard to describe and could never give you a clear picture of how beautiful it was. Very clear, very salty, great waves to jump in. We brought water shoes but never used them. Never had a problem getting a palapa as there was always one empty somewhere. There are the ususal hobie cats, kayaks and paddle boats there to use (included) The ocean was warm and we the beach walks were great. You can easily walk in to Varadero from the beach and it is a bit cooler walk than taking the road. One word of mention...you may wish to bring an air mattress if you are a beach dweller. My hubby found the chairs hard and not too comfy.

Pool: The pool was very nice and wound around the bar area. I swam in it the last day and it was cool but nice once you were used to it. It appeared clean all the time and I was not overwhelmed by the smell of chlorine when I was in. They have a swim up bar but I only say one person at it the whole week we were there. Lots of empty chairs around the pool all the time. The chairs are softer in the pool area. The grounds at this hotel are beautiful and well looked after. Lots of birds and little lizards-totally harmless!!

Reception: No problems with check in or out and the staff was always happy to answer questions, exchange $$ etc. Upon arrival at the airport they put you on a bus that takes you to your hotel-there are great drinks on this bus!!! $5 pesos for 2 drinks. We did split on a late check out with some people we met there -cost is $25 pesos but it was worth it to us as regular check out is at noon and we did not have to leave for the airport until 7:45pm. It was nice to be able to go and take a shower before departing. If you do not pay for late check out they put your bags in a safe room and give you access to a room for changing and showering. When you get to the airport you may wish to stay downstairs for a while before going through security. We made the mistake of going up right away and it is very hot and crowded. At least downstairs you can go outside and get some air.

Havana trip-think it cost us about 67 pesos each. 2 hour bus ride with a guide who gives you great info about Cuba. Bring a roll of toilet paper with you!! Havana is beautiful and there is so much to see that this short trip really does not give you enough time to take it all in. I wish we could have stayed for longer. Lunch is inlcuded in this trip and it was very nice. They give you time to shop a bit and take you to see some beautiful places. I would love to go back to Havana and explore sometime.

Catamaran/Cayo Blanco-$75 pesos pp. This was a very nice trip-catamaran was a blast. Drinks are all included. We stopped betwwen 2 islands and they cooked up some lobster that you could buy for $10 pesos. Nice music and atmosphere on the boat. Cayo Blanco is a nice island with a gorgeous beach where you sit and relax and then there is a large buffet lunch. We saw dolphins in the bay just off the island. Party time on the way back with great music and dancing. After the Cat trip you are bussed to a place for a dolphin show. It was short but cute and you are pretty tired by this point anyway. Big hello to Sherri and Sherri from Halifax who made our trip pretty funny!! This trip also included the Catamaran sunset tour the next evening. It was vey nice but we were not informed drinks were not included on this trip. They were only a peso each but we had not brought much money. Sunset was beautiful but watch the mosquitos when you return to the landing. This was the one and only time we saw mosquitos in Cuba. Bring some spray and put it on as you return to shore.

Animacion: There is a small animacion team at the Las Morlas and they give great effort and work very hard. They invite you to join games during the day and put on the shows at night. The dancing and music were great. This hotel has more of an older crowd and not much happens after 11pm. I would not recommend it to a youger crowd looking to party. We are in our 40's and found it a bit too quiet.

Overall this is a great little hotel that is clean and has a super staff. The beach is wonderful and there is a lot to see and do. There is a bank right next door and Varadero is a 10 or 15 minute walk. It was hot when we were there so walking in to town in the morning is advised. You can grab a cab or carriage on the way back if it is too hot or if you are carrying too many parcels from shopping at all of the markets. The carriage ride cost 10 pesos for 4 of us. We lacked for nothing on this trip and had a great time. Big hello's to Sharon and Kathy (Katee!!), Eric and Josee and Earl and Dawn-you all made our trip more enjoyable!! Any questions..sarmay88@yahoo.com
Oasis Las Morlas

April 2005
Oasis Las Morlas
Hamilton, ON, Canada
November 2004
My husband and I and 5 friends booked a week at the Riu Las Morlas resort at the end of September 2004. The resort is beautiful and clean and just the right size.

Check in was easy and we were given a room on the main level. At first I was disappointed with this, but later on was quite pleased with the close proximity to everything. We were close to the main dining room, but all rooms on the main level are 2 floors, with 2 bathrooms and 2 twin beds on the main and a double bed on the upper floor. Friends we later met at the resort requested to change rooms to a main level, since they found the air conditioning quite noisy in their room. We loved the size of the room and the box air conditioner was quite sufficient to cool the upper level. There is some kitchen noise on the main level while breakfast and dinner preparation goes on, but we never really noticed it. It was wonderful to be able to swim up in the pool, almost to our room door, and having a room on the main level made it easy to get towels, sunglasses or anything we may have forgotten.

The food was buffet style and fairly good. We were tiring of the breakfast by the end of the week. It does get repetitive. The bacon, prepared omelet’s, hot chocolate, fresh pasta and ice cream were delicious. Their cappuccino and espresso from the bar are excellent. Make sure you ask for more bottled water at the front desk when you need it. The main bar by the pool shuts down at midnight and entertainment staff go home, and we were not used to finishing our evenings so early. The lobby bar does stay open later.

Alian, Camillio and Alexis worked hard to make sure everyone enjoyed themselves. The shows were quite good as well. We met a few people there and our group from Canada became quite large and loud. But we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and the staff was extremely friendly. Juan was an excellent resource as well. Seven of us booked a private taxi through our Sunquest tour guide and were able to get a personalized tour to Havana with a driver for $35 US each. This was worth the money, but I don’t know if I’d visit Havana again. The weather was excellent. We had two evenings with rain, and one of those evenings, we just partied and danced in the rain.

The beach is beautiful. We arrived just after Hurricane Jean. Straw umbrellas are available and staff will help you get a lounge chair, but as with most resorts, you must get up fairly early to claim one with your towel. Riu deserves a 3 ½-4 star rating. The rooms are lovely and clean, shower pressure is good. Staff is great. Food is good, entertainment good. They did some maintenance on our room (painting railings, painting outside doors) while were there, which we felt could have waited until after we’d checked out. Lunch is served in an open air buffet, but when it’s not so busy, the birds help themselves to the food and staff do not try and keep the birds away from the food.

I would absolutely return to Varadero, but might try a new hotel for a change.
Oasis Las Morlas
Toronto, Canada
September 2004
Had a fantastic time (2 weeks) at the Riu Las Morlas resort. The resort is beautiful yet fairly small which means everything (beach, buffets, bars, swimming pool and rooms) are all in close proximity of each other, which is great. With only about 143 rooms available at this resort, you really get to know most of the people at the resort, giving it a sense of a friendly, community atmosphere.

The beach is simply amazing! Probably one of the best stretches of beach if not the best in all of Varadero. Straw huts are available but as with most resorts, you must get up fairly early (before 8:30am) to claim one with your towel.

The food was buffet style and fairly good with plenty of sauces and condiments available. It became repetitive after a while but there was always lots to choose from and quite a variety available, to satisfy your hunger. The bacon, custom prepared omelet’s, orange juice and ice cream were simply amazing!

The entertainment stage is quite small but the animation team does a great job to entertain everyone. Alian, Camillio and Alexis work non stop to entertain everyone from beach volleyball, to water polo, to dance lesson, exercising and stretching to taking out those who were interested, to the discos in town at night time. The animation staff was simply the best! All the bar tenders and hotel receptionists were also extremely friendly.

Cayo Blanco was a great excursion at $75 US. You visit a dolphin show and then take a Catamaran ride out to the most beautiful white sandy island with golden colour water. You do a little snorkeling as well and feast with fresh lobster. Definitely worth doing. The one day trip to Havana was also worth the $67. You visit Old Havana, a cigar store, a very large but beautiful cemetery as well lunch being provided in a nice restaurant. You also have time to bask in the culture and lifestyles of the Cuban people as you spend some time on your own and visit the many flea markets.

All in all it was a fantastic vacation and I would highly recommend this resort to everyone. The only thing I regret was not booking for three weeks. I will definitely be returning to this resort again!
Oasis Las Morlas
August 2004
Bunky’s Rating – 3.8 Stars out of 5

Let me preface this by saying that I’m going to nit-pick just a little because I want you to be aware of everything you should receive for your hard earned dollars. If you don’t think I’m being fair to the hotel I’d be open to discussing the issue via e-mail. You can e-mail me any time, I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Let me also advise you that if you have a problem at this or any other hotel, DO NOT take it out on the staff. IT IS NOT THEIR FAULT. Deal with the manager or your travel rep and don’t be a whiny wimp about it. Treat the staff with respect at all times and you’ll most likely have a great holiday. This is the most important advice I can give you. Pay Attention.

The front doors are open and welcoming with a friendly doorman at the front door.
Checking-in was quick. They took my hotel voucher, explained how both the towel service and food service works.
They gave me my room key (2 room keys should’ve been given at check-in as we had to ask for a second later on) and then Juan took us and our luggage up to our room.
There is an elevator for guests to use if they prefer.
Juan showed us the room, the bathroom, explained how the safe worked (with room card) and how the A/C worked, all light switches, the balcony, the mini-fridge re-stocking and reminded us what time the dinning room opened. I should’ve tipped him a U.S. buck then, but I gave him a fiver when we left. Juan is great. Get to know him if you can.

The Room:
143 Units:
The beds:
The room had two large twin beds pushed together but made up separately. It was more then enough space. The beds were firm but I sleep on a futon at home so I had no problem sleeping in these beds.

The TV:
The TV is a 20” color Samsung TV with remote. There are about 18- 20 channels with a reasonable mix of Cuban, European and American channels including Showtime.

The balcony:
There is a small balcony to smoke Cuban cigars on. Balcony furniture included 2 garden chairs and one small plastic table. All room balconies face in towards the court yard.
Because of the humidity the balcony became the best place to hang damp clothes to dry out.

The A/C:
Air conditioning is available in the guest rooms and hotel stores only. The A/C unit in the guest rooms is a window unit built into the outside wall. The unit in our room worked well; in fact I had to use a spare blanket to stay warm at night. The unit was a bit noisy but it worked like a white noise generator for me (put me to sleep).

The room safe:
The room safe came with the room at no extra charge, which is the way it should be at all hotels. If it isn’t ask to talk to the manager and INSIST that use of the room safe be included at no extra charge. A room safe that is not included free is UNACCEPTABLE.

The mini-fridge:
This issue is a sore point with me. The rooms mini-fridge although stocked with one 1.5L bottle of water, two small cola bottles, one orange soda bottle and two Cristal cervezas for free, It was only stocked once every second day. It would be my recommendation that the room fridge be stocked daily and that it be stocked with two (dos) 1.5L bottles of water, 2 colas 2 orange and 2 cervezas daily.
My wife and I both drink a lot of water and we were constantly asking for “un pomo de agua, por favor” at the front desk. I really do find that unacceptable.
There was actually one day when we could not get water at all. The room had not been stocked. When we asked at the desk it had not yet arrived. By the time we came back later in the day the bottled water was all gone. UNACCEPTABLE! This issue is one of the main reasons I rated the hotel the way I did. Humans need water to drink. Las Morlas you need to do better concerning this.

As an aside: All other RIU hotels in the Caribbean, Mexico and the Dominican have a liquor dispensing rack with full sized bottles of Rums (light and dark), Vodka, Whiskey, and or Tequila provided free in each guest room. Not that this was an issue with me but if we’re going for consistency in the RIU chain, what is the problem in Cuba? Now in fairness, there might be some regulations in Cuba about this I’m not aware of, so this didn’t figure in the rating.

There is one full bathroom with a large tub with sliding glass shower doors. A standard sized sink with a fair sized marble vanity and full mirror. Standard hotel sized toilet, one toilet paper dispenser. (Toilet paper, they had nice toilet paper but it seemed to another item that is rationed out. But we never ran out so no problem there.) Two hand towels and two bath towels provided daily, but no face cloths. I’m told the face cloth issue is a problem throughout the entire Caribbean in most hotel chains, so bring your own.

The Maid service:
Olga cleaned our room and made our beds every day except for Saturdays (her one day off). Olga always did a great job and always left some nice towel art on the beds. She did something different everyday. On our last day there she wrote “bye” using three towels. Olga was not the person responsible for re-stocking the bar fridge. Tipping your room maid is becoming traditional. Money is nice but in Cuba women have a hard time getting extras like Shampoos, Cream Rinses, Body and/or Hand Lotions. Stuff for shaving like foams and disposable razors. Hair accessories like brushes, combs, hair bands or covered elastics etc. A combination of money and gifts works well for tips. Sewing kits, Pens, pencils and pencil sharpeners all make good small gifts. You get the idea.

One final word about the rooms at the Las Morlas.
If you see or come across la cucaracha (a cockroach), either in your room or in the hallways, firstly… KILL IT. Secondly and most importantly don’t freak out. Please keep in mind that you are now in a sub-tropical third world country. You will most likely see maybe only one, maybe two of these creatures and they are easily killed with a shoe. The Las Morlas is not crawling with bugs. CALMLY report your finding to the front desk when you get a chance and they will take it seriously. Just don’t make a huge issue about it.
Enjoy your room with confidence.

The Dinning Room and the Food:
The dinning room is not so overly large as to be impersonal. There is only the one dinning room on the premises at the Las Morlas and it is buffet style. There is another buffet serving area for lunches at the beach house. There is no a la carte restaurant, which suited me just fine. Proper casual attire (slacks Gentlemen) is expected for the evening meal.
The staff is friendly and efficient. I always left a U.S. dollar tip on the table for every meal.
The dinning room has grill area where a chef will cook up an omlette or eggs over easy for breakfast. He will also cook you a specialty pasta dish for the evening meal if you want.
The staff will serve you white or red wine or cerveza to drink Coffee, Cappuccino or tea is available for drinking. There is milk, but its warm milk and we believe its unpasturized and we also suspect it is either derived from powdered milk or a condensed milk with water added.
There does not seem to be any cold fresh milk in Cuba period. At least not in the way Canadians are used to. Even in Cuban grocery stores there is only UHT milk and in small amounts.

In the dinning room for breakfast these was yogurt and at lunch and the evening meal there was ice cream for desert (both made from powders we suspect) and some thin light cheddar cheese was also available.
The quality of the buffet food at the Las Morlas is good, it’s not great, but from what I’ve heard from other Cuban resort visitors the food at the Las Morlas is far better then most of the other resorts in Cuba.
I personally never had any trouble finding something I liked and my wife who is a vegetarian had no problem at all. She rather enjoyed the food. The only weird thing is that with the pancakes and French toast at breakfast, they served honey and not syrups. I find this odd in a country where sugar is one of their main exports. Anyway the food was good. No problem there.

The Bars:
There are three bars at the Las Morlas
The Lobby bar.
The pool/swim-up bar.
The beach bar.
There is a menu of drinks to order from or you can order specialty drinks. Tell them how to make your favorite drink and they’ll gladly do it. The bar tenders are great people and will take good care of you.
I tipped a US buck with every first drink at whatever bar I went to. A good practice to get into.
The alcohol is good stuff. It will get you tipsy or buzzed if you want.
I don’t believe they had any foreign alcohols like CC or Bacardi
In my opinion even Cuban bathtub rums are better then Bacardi’s best rum anyway.
The water from the bars had a funny taste.
I preferred the spring water from the dinning room.

The Pool:
The pool at the Las Morlas is a fine pool. The pool is one of those slow swimming channel/waterfall/kids area/pool bar type of pools. It has it all. Two bridges overhead and a volleyball net for those who feel energetic in the 34 degree heat. It’s clean (but I recommend a shower after swimming) and warm. There is also an island section for the more serious tanners. Nice pool.

The Beach:
The Las Morlas is well known for having the best beach in Varadero. It’s true too.
Lots of palapas (thatched beach umbrellas), lots of beach chairs. A few steps to that blue/green ocean. Not a days hike like at some of the other resorts. There’s also a beach staff that will look after your water sport requirements with two Catamarans, 3 paddle boats, a number of small kayaks, snorkels, fins and masks for beach snorkeling. An excellent beach and fun beach staff. Ask Freddie to take you to see the fish on a sail and snorkel. Only $15 bucks U.S. each. It only takes two hours. It’s a good time. The ocean is clean, clear and warm close to 30C degrees.

A note for families: There is some nudity (mostly topless women) on these beaches. Be prepared for that. Don’t try to change it or force your morals here. Just accept it or don’t come here.

The Las Morlas is big on entertainment fun.
The Animacion team is something special. The dancers are WOW. The musicians are extraordinary
Two bands we saw were:
o The RIU Band: Fantastic. Some of the members from this band come in to serenade you during the evening meal in the dinning room. With the dancers they also put on a hell of a good stage show every second Saturday night.
o Septeto Charisma: Absolutely astounding. I’m also a musician so I know what I’m talking about here. Septeto Charisma has a fellow who could be the next Ricky Martin singing for them. The trumpet player must have taken lessons from Miles Davis, his sensibilities are right on. That rhythm section is well schooled and well arranged. They are a hot band!

The people on the Animacion team like Alexis and Alian are consummate professionals. We were well entertained and I even learned how to dance a little. Cha cha cha!

I’d go back to the Las Morlas in a New York Minute. I’d highly recommend this hotel if you want a quiet hotel where you can relax and read or have a leisurely swim. If you are looking to party down 24 & 7, I’d suggest maybe hotels in Havana or better yet go to Cancun.

The staff at the Las Morlas is great. The location is the best and food is good. What’s not to like? With the exception of the lack of bottled water and the mini-fridge restocking problem I’d call this the little hotel that could I love Cuba. I love the spirit of the people. We both loved the Las Morlas

We also did some excursions out of the hotel.
I’m a diver so I went on a couple of 2 dive excursions. My wife and I did a day trip to Havana. But those have nothing to do with the hotel. So I’m not covering them in this review.

Don’t forget if you want advice or information on anything like crime, excursions or tipping or food or whatever. E-mail me at planmyvacation@hotmail.com

Chao for now.
Haste Luega
RIU Las Morlas
– Canada
May 2004
Since I found it hard to find reviews on Las Morlas I vowed to write one when I returned. Our family (myself, my husband and two young adult daughters})just returned from a week (May 22-29, 2004) at Las Morlas.

-Staff-the staff was amazing no matter what job they did you were always greeted with smile and often even a wonderful conversation... from bartenders and waiters to doormen and the fellow that gets your beach chair ALL were awesome and truely know what service and hospitality are.

-Management- all I can say is that we saw the manageress everywhere, with her staff, with clients, checking things over...her management style clearly makes for happy employess and happy guests.

-Food- always plenty of good basic food, well labeled... and often wonderful surprises... like the best calimari I ever had and so many wonderful fish dishes. I'm not a meat eater but my husband and eldest daughter said the meat was good - something different each night. My youngest is a vegetarian and she had no problem finding lots of good stuff to eat!

-Rooms- We had standard rooms and they were simple but everything we needed. Each room had a balcony with views of the pool and ocean. Air conditioning and a mini fridge that worked great. The fridge was stocked every other day and when the complentary bottle of rum was gone, another replaced it! Everything was very clean and the maid did wonderful things with the towels everyday.

-Grounds- Were clean and since the garden is mature it was well treed with palms that provide a lot of shade. The hotel is right on the beach. And the lunch buffet is served just off the beach.

-Tipping- Try to bring a lot of $1 bills (US$) for tips but small gifts are much more appreciated. Although the cash is nice,a lot of things are hard to come by for Cubans and many things they can't buy even though they may have the cash to do so. Talk to the staff, get to know them, and you'll want to do something special for them. Bring things like good quality t-shirts, sandals, ball caps, towels (tea towels too), childrens toys, good bars of soap, shampoo, toothpaste, small boxes of detergent, spanish/english dictionaries if you can afford it. Think of thigs people need... that is what you should bring. Try to look for the less visable staff and also those who are a little more shy... it's easy to get to know the outgoing people.

-Tours- We did the Havana day tour. Though very hot, it was very interesting. You get a little taste for Havana and you want to go back to explore more. Just say No to the beggers or ignore them and they will leave you alone (it happens everywhere - so don't let it put a damper on the trip). The other tour was Rio Canimar.. it was a most amazing day! I have to say I really felt like I got way more than I paid for. We snorkeled in the ocean, then in a fresh water cave, then a boat tour up the river, lunch, horses, hammocks, row boats and exploring. Buy the video (CD) it's a wonderfull souvener and you'll be glad to have it when you get home! Carlos was an amazing guide and if you get a chance to chat with him a bit - you'll find him a most interesting fellow.

-Overall- I would highly recomend this resort. The smaller size appealed to me and created a family atmosphere...we got to know the staff and other guests quite well. It is a great place to relax. The entertainers all had other jobs during the day but managed to put on an enthusiastic performance each night. As well they arranged trips to the local night clubs for the younger people (and the young at heart). My daughters had a blast. Cuba is a very safe place to visit and like anywhere you just need to use your head. Enjoy all Cuba has to offer.

If you are lucky like us you will make some new friends... we were honoured to have been invited to the home of our new friends and had a wonderful fiesta! Memories for a lifetime!
RIU Las Morlas
May 2004
We have just returned from a one week vacation at the Rui Las Morlas. The resort is as I had been reading – not too big / not too small – a close/community feeling kind of resort. You got to know the other people at the resort as well as the staff. The rooms were fine, we were in a third floor room with a balcony overlooking the pool area – it was fine, clean, two beds together making one king size bed, large tub and shower unit and cleaned each day with a new surprise awaiting your return – you never knew how the towels were going to look and what flowers might appear. There was fridge in each room – filled every two days, water was available anytime upon request.

The only downside is all meals are buffet style – there are a couple of eating areas. The main dining room for breakfast and dinner, another area beside the beach for lunch. The food was very good and well labeled – that is a big thing for a picky/fussy eater like me!

The beach was wonderful and the location perfect – we were a short walk into Varadero. We enjoyed ourselves very much and had a wonderful/relaxing vacation. You had to be an early bird if you wanted an umbrella on the beach. There were always many activities to participate in if you liked – the recreation staff were very good at getting people to participate. The same staff were also part of the entertainment team – entertainment was top notch. Alexis and Allain were the two people around most during our stay – they were a lot of fun and great sports. The bars were great – my favorite being the bar in the main building – Ivan my favorite bar tender. Always a smile and made the best cappuccino on the resort.

I would definitely recommend the resort to anyone in a second.

We stayed at the resort from May 7 – 14th and are from Fredericton, NB – Canada.
RIU Las Morlas
London, Ontario
February 2004
My wife and I just returned from our 7th visit to Cuba, and our 4th to Varadero. For this trip I choose the Las Morlas.

This resort is a 31/2 star hotel....only because of it's size and no a la carte restaurants ....in service,friendly staff,clean premises and rooms,and beautiful grounds,I rate this a 4star hotel.

We paid 690.00 each plus taxes...this is the range this hotel belongs in, not at a 1000.00 or more range. It is close to the town, we walked,( and I hate walking) and found it very relaxing. It has only 143 rooms, so it is small but very easy to get to any part of the premises.It is right on the beach, and what a beautiful beach it is. It is located right nextdoor to the Internacional Hotel(stayed their last year) prefer the Las Morlas. I hope this helps.