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Holiday Illness Complaint

Holidaymaker says that they contracted Cryptosporidium at the Melia Jardines del Rey in Cuba

8th August 2017

We've been contacted by holidaymakers who have suffered the debilitating symptoms of a gastric illness following a stay at the Melia Jardines del Rey in Cuba, with one diagnosed with having suffered from the Cryptosporidium parasite.

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The Melia Jardines del Rey

The Melia Jardines del Rey is situated next to the idyllic Flamenco Beach in the Cayo Coco setting of the Cayos, Cuba and advertised by British tour operator Thomas Cook on an all-inclusive basis. The Cuban resort has a choice of restaurants and pools that make it an attractive destination for holidaymakers of all ages.

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Holidaymaker reports contracting Cryptosporidium

Our client advised us that their group of 4 experienced problems with gastric illness soon after they arrived at the Melia Jardines del Rey and that their symptoms lasted for over a week, with one of the members of their group losing 2 stone and being hospitalised as a result of their condition.

They advised us that they witnessed several hygiene issues during their stay, including a problem with flies landing on the food at the hotel buffet, as well as the pool looking dirty and even being closed at one stage, with no explanation provided by the hotel.

Our client informed us that their group experienced holiday ruining symptoms that included stomach cramps, diarrhoea and vomiting, and that after being assessed by a medical practitioner it was confirmed that a member of their group had contracted the Cryptosporidium parasite.

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Reviewers comment on hygiene issues and holiday illness

From the comments left by reviewers on TripAdvisor, it would appear that our clients are not alone, as other guests who recently stayed at the Melia Jardines del Rey have also reported suffering from illness during their stay, with others pointing out issues with the hygiene practices at the Cuban hotel in July.

In his review titled "Disappointing Vacation […]", '19Antonio61' says that the "rooms were infested with roaches and bugs" and "for the duration of [their] stay" he experienced "issues with [the] air-conditioning, toilets and showers".

He goes on to say that "some of the people [they] travelled with were sick from there and only started feeling better a few days ago". He says that "if you are having fish" you should ensure that "it is well cooked".

Waterlooville holidaymaker 'sharvey980' wrote a review titled "Beware Food Terrible" in which he says that "the food was always cold" and "it was always covered in flies" which were also "floating in the food".

He says that he and his "wife and eldest son were all [ill]", and he believes that this was caused by "undercooked omelettes and fish". He comments that "when [he] complained on the second week to customer services that [his] wife had been unwell for 2 days, the manager said [that they] would have to take her to the local doctors at a cost of 240 Cuban pesos, which would have to be [paid] in cash".

He also says that "the room was dirty", stating that there were "stains on the bed, chair and settee", and there was "mould all over the bath and curtains" and "dead flies squashed on the walls".

In his review of his stay titled "Massive mistake", 'Kevin G' says that "1 pool was closed" and "the other [was] very dirty". He says that he and his "other half have come home with Dicky tummys" [sic], and continues to comment that the "food was cold" and he was served "undercooked meat [that] was raw and bloody". He also says that there were "lots of [flies] [which he witnessed] landing on [uncovered] food".

Birmingham holidaymaker 'lynnbabe9' wrote a review titled "Believe all the negative comments written on here" in which she says that they "had a plate of non-edible food pushed back to" them, upon which they say that a hotel staff member said "that it was not their problem". She goes on to explain that "the pool is green with scum on the water" and "the food is cold".

'pszczudlinska' from London wrote a review that was simply titled "Disappointing" in which they say that after arriving at the "hotel everything seemed fine until a couple of days later when [they] both got diarrhoea and stomach cramps from the food".

They continue to explain that this "ruined [their] holiday" and they are still suffering from their condition at the time of writing. 'pszczudlinska' says that they "also found out that [they were] not the only people that experienced stomach and bowel problems", adding that they "haven't eaten out anywhere else" during their holiday.

'pszczudlinska' concludes their review by saying that the holiday "was a complete waste of money and not […] relaxing" as they ended up "sleeping in [their] room as [they were so] weak from the lack of food and fluids".

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What is Cryptosporidium?

Cryptosporidium is a single celled parasite that can induce debilitating symptoms such as diarrhoea, stomach cramps and abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and a fever. It can be treated, although it's important that you request a medical practitioner carry out a stool sample test at your earliest convenience so that you can be accurately diagnosed and treated.

What is Cryptosporidium?

Cryptosporidium is a waterborne disease, so it's possible to catch it through the food poisoning route, whether caused by flies spreading disease to food or as a result of unsafe cooking practices. It can also be contracting by inadvertently consuming contaminated water from an unclean swimming pool.

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Find out if you can make a 'no win no fee' claim

If you've contracted a gastric illness on an all-inclusive package holiday, then under The Package Travel Regulations 1992, you could be entitled to claim compensation on a 'no win no fee' basis.

Our travel law specialists can provide you with a free no-obligation consultation, during which we can advise you of the best way to pursue your complaint and whether you're eligible to make a holiday illness claim.

Nicholas Lukacs - Holiday Claims Litigation Executive

Contact us about your holiday illness claim

To find out more about claiming compensation for illness at the Melia Jardines del Rey in Cuba; speak to Nicholas Lukacs by calling us on 0808 145 1353 or complete our enquiry form and we will call you back.

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