GUARDALAVACA — With several more weeks of winter weather no doubt waiting for most Canadians – despite what the calendar says – there’s still time to get clients out of the cold and into Gran Muthu Almirante Beach Hotel.
The Cuban resort, featured in Hola Sun Holidays’ winter program, was one of the stars of the show on Hola Sun’s FAM to Holguin and Santiago de Cuba last fall. Hola Sun hosted Canadian travel advisors and members of the media, including Travelweek, on the FAM.
Gran Muthu Almirante Beach Hotel, an MGM Muthu Hotels property, is situated on Playa Guardalavaca, a 65-minute drive from Frank País Airport in Holguín. Cuba is known for its beautiful beaches and this stretch is truly a sight to behold.
MGM Muthu Hotels is an Indian company with 36 properties including additional Cuban accommodations in Cayo Guillermo, Cayo Santa Maria, Cayo Coco, Varadero and Miramar. Other MGM Muthu hotels are in Portugal, Spain, France, England, Scotland, Kenya and India. The brand also has three new Cuba hotels opening soon: Muthu Las Tunas Hotel, Gran Muthu Ensenada in Holguín and Muthu Lincoln Hotel in Havana.
Gran Muthu Almirante Beach, which has only been open to guests since Nov. 1, 2021, has 514 rooms, split between suites and junior suites, with a maximum total capacity of 1,000 guests. Some 54 of the rooms are designated to the adults-only VIP section, which has its own pool, reception, restaurant, spa, beach section and butler service.
Gran Muthu Almirante Beach Hotel’s lush and well-maintained grounds
Not surprisingly, the primary reason to recommend Gran Muthu Almirante Beach Hotel is the spectacular beach. The water is warm and a beautiful blue, there’s a beach bar and hotel guests can mingle with locals as all beaches in Cuba are open to everyone.
To make the most of the beautiful setting, there are non-motorized watersports and beach activities, all included. Guests can take free scuba diving lessons in the pool followed by the options, at a cost, of a first dive up to 12 metres deep or diving excursions for experienced divers.
The employees at the resort are extremely friendly and go the extra mile to be as helpful as possible. Their graciousness makes one feel at home and is a welcome touch that clients will appreciate. It’s highly likely that guests will depart with some new Cuban friends.
The surrounding landscape is especially picturesque, and the grounds of the property are quite gorgeous, lush and, appropriately, extremely well-maintained, bursting with lovely flowers and gardens. As the resort is very new, everything is pristine and in top-notch condition. The location is very secluded, with little in the immediate surrounding area, so utmost relaxation is easily attainable.
The view from the 7th floor bar at Gran Muthu Almirante Beach
‘CANADA DAY’ EVERY THURSDAY
The hotel boasts three à la carte restaurants: Asian, Italian and seafood. There’s also a main buffet and the beachside La Roca snack bar, with décor straight out of the 1960s (in a good way). La Roca is open late night and has a bar plus a candy corner. Every Wednesday at La Roca is Cuban Day which means a show, Cuban cocktails, sugarcane juice and roast pork on a spit. Most nights, later in the evening, it’s karaoke time at La Roca. Every Thursday at Gran Muthu Almirante Beach is Canada Day with poutine, roast pork and seafood. To get a spectacular, panoramic view of the property and the beach, spend some time at the distinctive rooftop Bar Mirador ‘Zafiro’ on the 7th floor.
For utmost convenience, Gran Muthu Almirante Beach Hotel also offers 24-hour reception, a tour desk, money exchange kiosk and medical centre. The guest services staff is available to assist with weddings, events and other celebrations. Plus, it wouldn’t be Cuba without cigars, so there’s a cigar bar where guests can learn about the culture and history of Cuban cigars and rum from the in-house expert. Other amenities include a lounge bar, gym, outdoor sports complex, theatre with a bar and nightly shows, nightclub, children’s aquatic park and games room. The teen club, ages 13 to 19, has five PS4 pros with VR and five Xbox 1s. Parents can catch a break by dropping their four- to 12-years-olds at the kids’ mini club. Also, babysitting services are available with 24-hour notice.