Welcome to our website dedicated to Cayo Santa Maria!
This site has been online since spring 2002. With its hundreds of web pages and thousands of photos, we can say that our site is THE reference of the web about this sunny destination in Cuba. We have informations about hotels, beaches, services and much more! In 2012, you were 675,000 visitors to download 3 million pages of cayosantamaria.info.
Cayo Santa Maria is a small island (sixteen kilometers long and two kilometers wide) located in the Bahia de Buena Vista, off the north coast of the main island of Cuba, in the « Jardines del Rey » (King's gardens) archipelago.
The King's Garden has been declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. Cayo Santa Maria is located approximately thirty kilometers west of Cayo Guillermo and Cayo Coco (two islands very popular in the area of the Jardines del Rey archipelago). We have very detailed websites of these islands in Cuba.
We visited the « Isla Grande » several times, and we know very well that destination. For this reason, we have a large collection of websites on almost all tourist centers in Cuba. We recently created a new section of our site to help you discover the beautiful « Jardines Del Rey ».
Cayo Santa Maria is connected to the main island of Cuba by a forty-eight kilometers long causeway (called Pedraplen in spanish). The construction of this dike started in 1989 by company named « Campaña de las villas ». The beaches and hotels are all located along the north coast of Cayo Santa Maria. The south is made of marshes and mangroves. It is important to know the sea in Cayo Santa Maria is often rough with high waves. If you are looking for a calm sea, it would be wiser to opt for Cayo Ensenachos, Cayo Guillermo or Cayo Coco. These islands are also in the King's garden of Cuba.
Cayo Santa Maria's main attraction is its superb beach! It's divided into five sections for a total of approximately 13 km, ideal for taking long walks on the beach, swim in pristine turquoise waters or just relax under the sun! The hotels are located on the longest strech of beach (6 km) on the west sector of the island. You can also enjoy a few kilometers of virgin beaches outside the hotel zone.
The former Barcelo Cayo Santa Maria Caribe and Tropical have found a new administration in the Canadian hotel group Blue Diamond Hotels and Resorts. The new official name is Memories Paraiso Azul Beach Resort. A new hotel opened its door in Dec. 2012, the Royalton Cayo Santa Maria.
The Barcelo Cayo Santa Maria Beach Colonial is no longer administered by the Barcelo group. In July 2012, they left Cayo Santa Maria. The hotel will now be administered by the HUSA hoteles group (Spanish chain) under the official name of HUSA Cayo Santa Maria. This group founded in 1930 in Barcelona manages 160 hotels, mainly in Europe (Spain). This will be his first hotel in Cuba. ¡Buena suerte!
The tourism industry started in late 2001 with the opening of the first hotel, the Sol Cayo Santa Maria. To learn more about the history of the island, visit the historia section of our site. Since then several resorts have opened. Despite this development, Cayo Santa Maria remains a safe and quiet little island. Click to see the growing numbers of rooms on the island since its debut in 2001.
Several projects are under development on the island and the surrounding area. For more information on hotels and services to come, visit the project section of our site. A golf course and a water park should be built on the island. More info to come ...
It is obvious that the ten years required for the construction of the causeway to connect Cayo Santa Maria to the main island of Cuba were not for a single hotel. Keep in mind the future American tourists will require many rooms to accommodate millions of tourists annually, the first years after lifting the embargo since 1962.
The land and hotels in Cayo Santa Maria are property of the Cuban government, as well as all hotels in Cuba. In Cayo Santa Maria the properties belong to the Gaviota Cuban Group, but joint ventures and administation contracts are given to international hotel chains (such as Melia Hotels International, HUSA hoteles & Blue Diamond) to help manage, promote and expand tourism in Cuba.
In 2012 the Sirenis hotel group has left Cuba. The Hotel Gaviota Cayo Santa Maria is now officialy the Hotel Playa Cayo Santa Maria (formerly Sirenis). The Sirenis La Salina in Varadero is now part of the Blue Diamond group, Memories Varadero. The Sirenis Cayo Coco returned to its predecessor, the hotel Playa Coco and finally, the Sirenis Playa Turquesa in Holguin is now the Riu Playa Turquesa.
In 2012 cayosantamaria.info celebrated its 10 years of existence. To celebrate this event, what better way to browse through the very first version of the site? Such wonderful memories of that time! Click HERE to browse the original forum.
Normand & Lily