Thursday, May 03, 2007

Trying to Forget!

Trying to Forget!

By A Yahoo! User from Hamilton Ontario
Last Visit:
October 2006

We returned from the Grand Playa Turquesa a week ago. For sure this vacation will be one to forget as soon as we can. We have been several times in Cuba and D. Republic so far always in hotels 4 and 4 ½ stars. Grand Flamenco, LTI Costa Verde, Melia Varadero and he haven’t experienced anything similar like on this vacation. We arrived (two of us with the 11 month infant) on Oct 2nd around 4:30 AM using Hola Sun package from Toronto. When we approached the front desk there was an unpleasant surprise. Lady at the front desk told that they have a “little” problem. What she has explained to us is that Hola Sun owns the hotel (and other hotels in the area) a lot of money and that they decided to collect the money from the guests at the arriving point! She asked us for a deposit of 200 CUC ($250 Cdn) just for the first day and that our tour operator should reimbursed us, and also she explained that they have charged all other passengers arrived a day before using same tour operator.

We didn’t bring $250 in cache because we paid our vacation in full (all inclusive) prior to departure to Hola Sun and I didn’t want to give them my credit card number. She sad that is nothing she can do until we pay the deposit. If we didn’t have an infant with us we would turn around and look for another hotel in the area. Our baby was tired from the trip and hungry so she has started crying. I demanded to speak with somebody fro the higher authority in the hotel and she called “customer relation person” (her name starts with “Y”). We were waiting for the 45 minutes until she arrived from her room. She just repeated the same story and here we are after the long trip in the lobby of the hotel with crying baby 5:30 in the morning. Usually guests are greeted with Mr. And Mrs. XYZ but we suddenly become “YOU TWO”! They didn’t offer to us a glass of water at least or asked us if we need anything for a baby at this point. After an hour and half of waiting and an hour of baby crying they decided to give us a room just for 2 hours, and literally they throw us out after two hours back to the lobby. So we were waiting in the lobby until 9:00AM when I called our travel agent (left a message to call us back to GPT) in Canada who called Hola Sun in Toronto (this call from the hotel for a 45 seconds were charged 4.75 CUC – they told us that 1 minute is 2 CUC – strange math). I requested a receipt for this call and I have told it will be sent to room and didn’t happen! Also tried to speak with manager of the hotel and I was told that it will be arranged but it didn’t happen.

So after five and half ours and humiliation on the front desk were we told that things are settling down and that we will get the room but with the note that our vacation is still haven’t been paid! So we were tired, angry, frustrated, and we lost most of the first day of our vacation. There is more to this story but I guess you got the point of GPT professional service! Official people in the this hotel are full of crap. I contacted Occidental Hotels and Hola Sun but no answers yet.

Other people have explained more about resort. I would say that food is not on the level of 4 ½ star hotel (you wont be hungry but food is repetitive every day with not much of a choice). Just to mention that we had some small bugs (ants) crawling in our room so be careful if you have kids or if you have any food in the room!

There were two positive things: First, Cuban people that working in the hotel and that we tipped on every occasion and even we left our baby stroller and some of the baby clothes to one of the employees and beautiful beach.

We WILL NEVER go back or visit to any of Occidental hotels again. People that using Hola Sun operator, BEWARE!


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