Pros

  • Relaxed all-inclusive resort set on pristine stretch of beachfront off of Cayo Coco
  • Large lagoon-like pool with swim-up bar
  • All rooms and suites have private balconies
  • As of 2019, some rooms had been renovated
  • Five restaurants and five bars, all of which are included in rates
  • Plenty of daily activities and great evening entertainment
  • On-site dive center and free water sports
  • On-site fitness center and tennis courts
  • Wi-Fi available in lobby and around pool
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Cons

  • Dated aesthetic could use updates
  • Occasional maintenance issues can be annoying
  • Limited Wi-Fi (standard in Cuba)
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Bottom Line

Melia Cayo Guillermo is a beachfront all-inclusive resort, set on the northernmost island of Cuba’s Jardines del Rey archipelago. The mid-range resort offers five restaurants and bars, plenty of land and water activities, evening entertainment, and a large lagoon-style pool. But the beach is the highlight here -- a wide, clean, uncrowded stretch of white sand and clear water. Melia’s 301 rooms and suites are spacious and clean, plus all have private balconies. Expect a little wear, however, and updates would be welcome. The property has a laid-back, intimate feel (compared to the many mega-sized resorts back on Cayo Coco), which suits those seeking a low-key vacation at an uncrowded all-inclusive. Those craving a newer, more modern property could try Melia Jardines del Rey.

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Amenities

  • Fitness Center
  • Internet
  • Kids Club
  • Pool

Oyster Hotel Review

Melia Cayo Guillermo

Scene

Relaxed and uncrowded all-inclusive resort, with rustic, palm-filled grounds and a gorgeous beachfront 

Grounds are lovely at this mid-range all-inclusive resort, dotted with coconut palms and centered around a large lagoon-shaped pool with connecting bridges and floating gardens. A series of pastel-hued three-story buildings containing guest rooms unfolds on either side of the pool. Interiors are relaxed, though the decor could use some updates. Guests are greeted in an expansive atrium lobby with a Zeus fountain garden and colorful wall murals, while dining venues are a mix of laid-back beachy spaces and more elegant options.

The grounds evolve from grassy and green to sandy and rustic as they approach the beachfront. A long timber boardwalk leads to a lovely stretch of pristine, white-sand beach dotted with shady palapas, loungers, and wooden cabanas. A long jetty offers easy access to deeper water for snorkeling and fishing. 

Melia Cayo Guillermo is significantly smaller and feels less crowded than other large all-inclusive resorts on Cayo Guillermo and throughout Jardines del Rey. While the property certainly shows its age, guests frequently comment on updates they observe taking place throughout the property.

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Location

On Cayo Guillermo -- 40 minutes from the airport and five minutes from Playa Pilar 

The hotel is located on the island of Cayo Guillermo, which is part of the Jardines del Rey archipelago to the north of central Cuba. This tropical island is known for its stunning white-sand coastline, which has proved a magnet for the all-inclusive resorts that dot its northern edge. Many guests remain within hotel confines, however, island explorers can take the double-decker “hop-on hop-off” bus. The resort is a 40-minute drive from Jardines del Rey's international airport. Greyhound-style coach transportation typically busses guests to and from the resort, but taxis are on hand at the airport, and they can be arranged with reception. Direct flights to the U.S. land at Ignacio Agramonte Airport in Camaguey, about a three-hour drive away. Playa Pilar -- arguably the region’s most beautiful beach -- is around five minutes away, and the tour bus stops there. 

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Rooms

Homey rooms with private balconies and amenities like flat-screen TVs and minibars; a bit tired and in need of updates

The hotel offers several different categories of rooms and suites, including Classic and Premium rooms as well as Junior, Grand, and Romance Junior Suites. Rooms are clean, well-maintained, and homey -- but they're tired and could use some updates. A tan and cream color palette blends with pale yellow walls, white tile floors, and wood and wicker furnishings. Mosquito nets frame beds, plus there are seaside touches like conch shell wall lamps. All rooms open onto private balconies or patios furnished with chairs and tables, while Suites add separate living areas. As of 2019, some rooms had been renovated, so ask ahead if you'd like something that's a bit more fresh (and be prepared to pay a bit more).

Standard amenities include flat-screen TVs, minibars that are restocked daily, safes, irons/ironing boards, hairdryers, and coffeemakers on request. Bathrooms are equipped with bidets, shower/tub combos, and a selection of toiletries. Graceful gilded mirrors and towel holders add classical touches. 

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Features

The usual resort trimmings with plenty to eat and drink, plus a beautiful beach

The biggest highlight here is the beautiful stretch of beach on which the resort sits -- though it can get windy, making it a great spot for kitesurfing. Scuba diving classes can be booked through the on-site dive center, and snorkeling and fishing can also be arranged. Water sports include windsurfing, catamarans, and pedal boats. For an alternative to the beach, there's a large lagoon-shaped pool that's surrounded by loungers and features a swim-up bar. 

Dining-wise, Las Palmeras serves buffet breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with cook-to-order stations. A la carte restaurants include La Laguna (Caribbean), Bonasi (Mediterranean), El Viejo Y El Mar (a la carte grill lunch on the beach), and poolside Cascada which is open 24 hours. Located off the lobby and also open 24-hours, Las Orquideas Bar serves cocktails and coffee, plus it offers evening piano entertainment. The Beach Bar serves cocktails just off the beach during the day; Cascada serves drinks in the pool; Swing Latino Bar serves as the night time dance spot; and Cubanito Sports Bar features a pool table and board games, open evening hours. All are included in the hotel's rates, as is most liquor, plus beer and house wine. Upgrades score full-size in-room liquor bottles.

The hotel offers five tennis courts, beach volleyball, and board games, and there’s a spacious but basic fitness center with a sauna. Nightly entertainment is offered in the Clubhouse, and daily activities are available around the pool and on the beach. Wi-Fi is on offer in the lobby and around the pool, but it requires an internet card which can be bought from reception -- the standard procedure for getting online throughout Cuba.

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Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Balcony / Terrace / Patio

  • Basic Television

  • Beach

  • Fitness Center

  • Free Breakfast

  • Internet

  • Kids Allowed

  • Kids Club

  • Mini Bar (with liquor)

  • Pool

  • Poolside Drink Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Swim-Up Bar

  • Tennis Court

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.