"Beware of local hotel package bookings" Villa Las Brujas Tip by FriederikevonRabenau
Villa Las Brujas, Cuba: 265 reviews and 4 photos
Booked Villa Las Brujas at a tourist desk in the Florida Hotel in La Habana. The lady was very nice and helpful and spoke good English and I'm sure that if she had known all the facts she would have advised us to purchase something different from what she sold us.
Money: dual currency: Peso Convertible, tourist currency, exchange rate July 2007 1 Euro= average 0.95 Peso Convertible, 1$US= 0.87 Peso Convertible. This is the money that is accepted by the locals if you are a foreigner. Peso Cubano, only for locals, exchange rate 1 Peso Convertible= 24 Pesos Cubanos.
We booked 8 nights B&B at Villa Las Brujas for 2 people. It was recommended to us that we should book the package with dinner included (which was thought to be a buffet dinner) as the hotel was far away from a town and other restaurants. A list was produced that showed how much one had to pay extra per day for dinner. The prices on the list were in accordance with the number of stars that the hotel had been given. Villa Las Brujas was classed as a *** Hotel and the cost of dinner was 17 Pesos Convertibles per person per day, almost the equivalent of 17 Euros. When we arrived we found out that there was no buffet and that eating ala carte would have been much cheaper on a non-prepaid basis (most days we didn't eat for more than about 10 Pesos Cubanos per person) and frequently the food that we had chosen was not available, a common problem in Cuba. Also the food was mostly not very nice, European in price but not in standard. What really annoyed us was that there were two menus, one for the prepaid and another one for pay-as-you-go guests. The ala carte had a larger choice and we were not allowed to select food from there even though it would have been within our prepaid budget.
Unique Qualities: Cabanas between mangroves with own bathroom, TV, air conditioning, quite spacious, quite clean. Boardwalks through mangroves connect the cabanas to eachother and to the restaurant as well as to the beach. No swimming pool (who needs one with the most beautiful warm water and white long sand beach within walking distance) but two jacuzzis at cabana level. Stairs from boardwalks down to beach. Beautiful view over ocean and beach, fantastic sunsets. Problem is the wild life namely the mosquitoes and sand flies that inevitably live in the mangroves. Without wind it was almost unbearable to stay out in the open (beach as well as restaurant) even though the 'mossie man' came and poisoned the air every day. As I got the hives from our insect repellent I unfortunately had to spend a significant part of my time indoors unless I was in the sea.
The restaurant service ranged from reasonable to indifferent, depending on what team of waiters was on in the restaurant and how tired the waiters were.
We were satisfied with the hotel as such but the annoying experience with the food did take some of the enjoyment away.
The price below is quoted without the food surcharge
Address: Cayo Las Brujas, Villa Clara province, Remedio & L
Directions: need to either take a bus that is provided by the tour company or take a taxi from Sta Clara which is what we had to do. Taxis are not cheap in Cuba as they have to be paid for in Pesos Convertibles.
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