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Horizontes Villa El Yarey

We love this hotel for its unique architecture and situation. Built atop a craggy massif rising over the semi-arid plains of Granma province, east of Bayamo, it makes good use of the natural limestone studded with cactus and with shade trees festooned with "old man's beard" mosses (a reminder, perhaps, of days when Fidel Castro used to vacation here). It offers spectacular views and will especially appeal to nature lovers, particularly birders. Guided birding tours here are a specialty of the friendly and enthusiastic local staff, who are not jaded in the way of many of Cuba's beach resort hotels.

Run by Cubanacán, it previously lay fallow for several years and reopened in 2006 after restoration. Sure, it's a two-star property and except for the modern bathrooms, it's hard to tell what may have been improved in the 12 air-conditioned, thatched duplex huts, which are dark, sparsely furnished, and partially decrepit. The thatched A-frame lobby lounge is dramatic, with its soaring breezeswept throughway. And the fare here is fairly basic and limited – no cosmopolitan menus! But there's a swimming pool with a poolside bar, new for 2008.

Facilities

  • Air conditioning
  • Daily activities programme
  • Ecological excursions programme
  • Garden
  • International cuisine
  • Lobby bar
  • Mastercard & Visa (not USA bank issued) accepted
  • Money exchange
  • Pool bar
  • Reception staff speak Spanish, English, French, German, Italian
  • Restaurant
  • Safety - front desk safe deposit box
  • Shop(s) with basic supplies, souvenirs & gifts
  • Swimming pool
  • Telephone - National & international calls
  • TV room/bar (international channels/videos)

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