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“Management needs a sharper eye”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Casa Quetzal Hotel

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Casa Quetzal Hotel
Certificate of Excellence
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
57 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
“Management needs a sharper eye”
Reviewed 24 November 2010

The Casa Quetzal is a hotel that is resting a bit too comfortably on its laurels. The staff is attentive (help getting stuff out of a car parked two blocks away, etc) but there are too many other things amiss for a guest to be happy paying $265 per night (for the Pacifica Suite). We do not usually spend this sort of money for a hotel and this was a bit of a splurge, and the disappointment was doubly real.

On check-in we were offered the opportunity to view a number of available rooms prior to making a choice. The Pacifica suite featured a small bedroom with a loft (for reading and television) and the option of having natural light and a private space to relax outside was appealing. There is a CD/DVD player linked into a TV in the small upstairs loft. A large patio downstairs came with a Jacuzzi, a small table and two chairs. A separate upstairs terrace (accessed by a spiral staircase from the main patio) is furnished with two lounging chairs and a small table. The bathroom is a bit awkward: sink outside in the entrance to the suite, (small) shower and toilet apart. Hot water can take some time getting to the room, but it was hot when it arrived and there was lots of it.

But there are problems. At this price you expect lodging to live up to the luxury boutique hotel billing. At this, Casa Quetzal fails. It isn't that it is terrible, but at this price point the guest has a right to expect tasteful furnishings and the sort of finishes that should come with it. This is an old building, remodelled and adapted to hotel accommodations, and one expects age to show - but look at the photo attached. This isn't about age - this is about lack of maintenance and attention. Furnishings presumably are a matter of taste, but it is hard to find traces of the art that is supposedly part of the Casa Quetzal's appeal. In Mexico, with its wealth of artistic tradition - ancient, traditional and contemporary, plastic flowers and cheesy souvenirs are inexcusable. I've tried attaching other photos - positive and less so, but TA keeps kicking them out.

Rooms come with breakfast included - OK, but definitely nothing special, and canned mushrooms in an omelette in Mexico just doesn't cut it. Neither did the hot chocolate, which tasted suspiciously like it came from a box, nor the supermarket strawberry jam.

The hotel just seems to need someone to take a hard look at what needs to be done to have this place live up to its billing. The room is not all that it ought to have been (convenience, decor, maintenance). The landscaping is pretty, but why do the plants in the private patios look to be neglected and dry?

On the positive side, the location is excellent - an easy walk to the principal sights. There are lots of other hotels in San Miguel, however, and it is hard to recommend this as an option.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chapul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CynthiaPrice, Owner at Casa Quetzal Hotel, responded to this review, 9 December 2010
Because this review covers so much territory and begs for a through response, I feel the need to go down through it and respond to almost every statement.
1. The reviewer has suggested that we are not continuing in our commitment to the highest quality in service and maintenance of our hotel. As a hotel that was once among the most expensive in San Miguel and is now pretty much square in the middle of the price range, (without one price increase in the past 5 years), as a hotel that has survived the opening of many new hotels in the past 2 years, and even the past few months, the VERY LAST thing we are doing is resting on our laurels. In this economy and with the often inaccurate negative press that Mexico is enduring, we at Casa Quetzal have striven to make the experience of our small Boutique B and B even more value added .
2. If these clients were given the option of a number of rooms, why did they choose one that is outside of their normal price range yet not of a décor they appreciate? Of our ten rooms, surely they could have found one among our more Mexican inspired designs, and with our prices beginning at $125 USD, surely their budget needs could have been met as well.
3. The client feels the $265.00 price tag for the Pacifica Suite was too much for what it is. This suite happens to be one of our most requested. With a very private patio large enough to include a Jacuzzi, dining and sitting area, with another private sun terrace, on the 2nd floor, and with an interior space that allows for a choice of places to be – with all of that as well as the usual amenities of our hotel - breakfast en suite and free laundry services, free wi-fi, a computer for our guests to use, free bottled water and generally, much more that is gratis than your average B and B or small hotel - one would be hard pressed to find such a suite anywhere in San Miguel for that price. (I did a quick look around and could find nothing even close to comparable anywhere near the main square in the Historical Center.)
4. As to the taste of this room – the opinions stated in this review strike me as simply inaccurate. Take a look at the pictures I have posted of the exquisite bed in this room and the general décor. The room is unashamedly influenced by the Pacific Rim (ergo, the name), something our Mexican guests enjoy – a change from the typical Mexican décor - as clearly stated in the descriptions of it on our web page. Since this client had the chance to see it before committing, I am again confounded that they would then complain about their choice. And there are no plastic flowers in Pacifica, or any other suite in the hotel. What is there, is a surround of paper flowers tucked up into the bowl of a light fixture in the kitchen area, meant to be fun and whimsical. (If you can’t enjoy a little break in what is otherwise a sophisticated décor, then you won't appreciate Mexico, where high Kitsch is an art form in its own right.) I do not, I repeat, do not put plastic flowers around the hotel where live, fresh, and exotic flowers can be found.
5. Yes, the main building of Casa Quetzal is indeed an old Colonial building and ALL buildings in San Miguel – new or old - have damp areas on walls caused by the humidity of the rainy season at this time of year. The rainy season does not really end until late September and this guest was with us in October, indicating only that we had not yet gotten to all the repairs the rainy season demands, as opposed to a factual overall indictment of our maintenance of the hotel. The maintenance of a place such as this is indeed daunting at times and we work literally day and night to keep the gardens and buildings looking there best. (My attention to such details is, in fact, an in-joke between me and my staff since I notice is every brown leaf, every ding in a wall, every crooked light and painting – so, if anything, I am over demanding about attention to all these details.)
6. The one area of this review where I would find some agreement is with the use of canned mushrooms in our omelets. Not my favorite thing either, though no one has ever complained before. With this review I have decided to cut the mushrooms from the menu rather than continue their use or even replace them with fresh mushrooms which have such a short shelf life. (By the way, our chocolate Abuelita is made in the traditional Mexican way, from scratch, and is delicious enough that I have to avoid it.) And supermarket strawberry jam? Other than making my own, I have never found much difference between available strawberry jams which leads me to the conclusion that this reviewer was really getting carried away with finding things to criticize.
7. The moniker of Luxury Boutique Hotel may not be what best describes Casa Quetzal, and is not the description I use. We are a hybrid – not really only a bed and breakfast, and not really a full service hotel. We are a small and intimate hotel, dedicated to making our guests feel special, known and well cared for in an environment that is friendly and attentive without ever being over bearing. We pride ourselves on the qualities that make us unique – a sense of warmth in our welcome and ongoing demeanor, while still offering privacy and discretion in all aspects of our service and accommodations.
Since I cannot find this person in my data base, given the information that is provided accompanying this and the other reviews posted by same, I (nor any of my staff) are at all certain as to who this person is. Were I able to contact this person directly, I would do so, as I do when there is the very infrequent problem, offering my personal apologies for the disappointment along with whatever amends might be appropriate.
In general, we do absolutely everything we can to insure a guest´s satisfaction (even going beyond the call of duty to go 2 blocks away to bring their luggage to us, as this person reported), and as the managing owner of Casa Quetzal, I wish more guests would air their problems/dissatisfactions with us when on site so that we can actually do something about it when we still have the chance to improve their experience.
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247 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
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English first
Atlanta, Georgia
1 review
Reviewed 9 November 2010

Just delightful! Small, intimate hotel, lovely helpfulstaff and a truly beautiful place. Only minor comment is that lightling was a bit dim in the rooms - could use some more lamps.

  • Stayed October 2010
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank tmarlowe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CynthiaPrice, Owner at Casa Quetzal Hotel, responded to this review, 13 November 2010
Thank you so much for this review! And also for the comment about the lights. . .this is an on-going project of ours - to improve the lighting in the rooms for those who like to read in bed. Your review will put some energy into that project. !! Again, many thanks for helping us make our hotel ever better for our guests.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 September 2010

My husband and I spent a night at Casa Quetzal a few days before our wedding (otherwise we were staying with friends outside of town). It was exactly what we needed. We stayed in the sweet with the private outdoor hot tub. My husband (the great guy that he is) ordered the "romance package" so we had rose petals, candles and champagne waiting for us when we returned from dinner. What a treat! The staff was extremely courteous and helpful. In the morning we had fabulous chilaquiles on the terrace. What a way to spend a great time with my fiance amidst all the wedding craziness. We will definitely return to Casa Quetzal next time we're in San Miguel de Allende.

  • Stayed October 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank wtraveler79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barcelona, Spain
Level Contributor
59 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 August 2010

I checked out Casa Quetzal based on guidebooks and tripadvisor reviews. Because of the lack of tourists and time of year, most hotels I inquired at were offering reductions of their rates. Casa Quetzal also offered a significant reduction on their posted rate.

The room was great, beautifully decorated, if a bit dark. Towels were a bit worn, and shower was not completely clean. For me though the major downfall was the free breakfast. With so many great restaurants in San Miguel I hate to stay somewhere where so many meals are included but hard to avoid nowadays. One morning I ordered the chilaquiles that came soggy and with little sauce, the next day huevos rancheros that were overcooked. This B and B, and the owner, have been in Mexico long enough to know what good Mexican food tastes like.

On the plus side, good location, and extremely competent and cordial receptionists, and make sure and check out the beautiful terraces.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank travelwithyourmeans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CynthiaPrice, Owner at Casa Quetzal Hotel, responded to this review, 23 August 2010
I really appreciate knowing when things are not up to par at Casa Quetzal and regret that the breakfast especially was not as expected, tho hearing that the cleanliness wasn't as usual is also very disappointing. I will take these remarks straight to the cleaning and cooking crew. It must be said however that these remarks are an anomaly since we are famous for our great breakfasts, and rarely - almost never - do i hear that there are any problems with cleanliness in our hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2010

Really enjoyed our stay here - although it was very quiet as we were the only guests for 2 of our 3 nights! Great location, lovely rooms, most of the staff very helpful (one of the staff members, who was from spain, was not). Fabulous roof top with lots of lounges and chairs, great for enjoying the sun.

San Miguel is a lovely town, pretty and relaxed. If you're looking for action, it's not the place though. We did an afternoon at La Gruta hot springs which was nice. We also did a day trip to Guanajuato, which was fabulous.

Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank KJP_Melbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CynthiaPrice, Owner at Casa Quetzal Hotel, responded to this review, 2 September 2010
I always do appreciate it when someone takes the time to give us a review on Trip Advisor. In this case, the review was helpful to me in making a staff change and the person referred to in the review as "not very helpful" has left our employ. We do pay attention to what is written here and are always striving to bring the best possible service and experience to our guests.
Regards,
Cynthia Price
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Santa Barbara, California
1 review
Reviewed 10 June 2010

Thank you so much for all your Service.
The best people. I hardly recommend this awesome hotel.
Special thanks to: Javier Chong, Enrique and Emilia.
If you really want to rest..this is the plase to go.

We definitely going back to San Miguel Allende !!!!!!
See you soon .

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank malea1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 June 2010

This was my first trip to SMA and I loved it. How different the different parts of Mexico are as we continue to explore. The Casa Quetzal was perfect for us. The Mexican decor and comfortable surroundings made us feel "at home in Mexico". Our room with a queen sized bed and small sitting area was great for relaxing on a cold evening. as they have in SMA. The breakfasts were great, just right for starting the day off. The location is convenient for sightseeing and walking to the Zocolo for a meal. Internet to keep in touch with home. Overall be loved it there and hope to return when our travels bring us again to SMA.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank WyoMary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa Quetzal Hotel

Property: Casa Quetzal Hotel
Address: 34 | Colonia Centro, San Miguel de Allende 37700, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Central Mexico and Gulf Coast > Guanajuato > San Miguel de Allende
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#9 Romantic Hotel in San Miguel de Allende
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Casa Quetzal Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa Quetzal, San Miguel's favorite boutique hotel, caters to the seasoned traveler with guest suites that are unique in their variety and sophistication. This little oasis, in the historical center of town, has elegant nods to the world's most exotic places, side by side with Mexico's colonial and contemporary architectural styles. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Casa Quetzal

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