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“Worst hotel we've been to in years”

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Casa Cartagena Boutique Hotel & Spa
Ranked #3 of 171 Hotels in Cusco
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 18 September 2011

On the day of our arrival the moment we saw the insides of the room (see attached photo for the sample of their "modern" decoration) we were not expecting much from this hotel, but what followed was below our most modest expectations.

Firstly last thing we want after an 11 hour train trip is being continuously disturbed in our room( we received 4 phone calls from the restaurant asking us to order breakfast for the next day and tell them exactly what time we are going to have it). In the end I went to reception and asked if we can just come to the restaurant and order our breakfast then(the answer was yes). Next morning around 7am we showed up in the restaurant and found it completely empty. One more trip to reception and in ten minutes later they wake somebody up and in further 30 minutes our breakfast is finally served (to be fair, the restaurant staff was polite and the breakfast was ok). Next days we did order the breakfast in advance which has no impact on the speed of the service.

Next evening around 9pm I called reception and asked to turn off a very noisy fountain outside of our room, which was promptly done. At 4am the morning after, they start flushing the bloody thing making us jump in our beds (imagine the sound of toilet flushing for several minutes, but much louder).

Rooms were not cleaned properly, one day we arrived in the afternoon after a long hike to find that there are no towels in the bathroom but instead we have cleaning solution left in the room. Another 2 trips to reception, and finally in 20 minutes we get our towels.

And finally, MY WIFE'S EARRING WERE STOLEN DURING OUR LAST DAY IN THIS HOTEL; the staff was completely unapologetic, no one even bothered to show up in the room to pretend to help us search for them, and needless to say no refund of any kind or even apologies were offered.The hotel manager was very rude and dismissive and didn't seem to care much about the whole situation. The arguments he used were along the lines "We searched the room after you left and found nothing" and "This has never happened before".

I have no idea, where all the positive reviews here come from, we we been to 6 other hotels in Peru, and even without the stealing part, this place is by far the worst.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank AlexG57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 September 2011

We had a nice stay at the Casa Cartagena. We arrived very late and they were waiting on us. The rooms were ample size both modern and rustic at the same time and the bathroom was huge. We had come from the Inca trail and appreciated the luxury of the bathroom with both a shower and a tub for our sore muscles. The hotel itself is quite beautiful with a relaxing courtyard and patio which we took advantage of and very modern bar and lounge areas.

1) Breakfast was ample and delicious. We were impressed with the breakfast buffet offering.
2) I received an 80 min spa/facial combo and although the prices were very high for Cusco standards the convenience was worth it and the treatment was good. Our group made use of the spa pool and this was a nice amenity as well.
3) The bar was great. The service was a tad slow but the drinks were delicious and were served with some small complimentary appetizers.

Our only complaints:

1) The internet was very slow and only one of the complimentary PC's was working. Given most hikers aren't traveling with laptops we were reliant on these and it was a tad frustrating.
2) They charge $25 to take you to the airport. Most of the hotels do not charge for this and even our much cheaper hotel on the front end offered this as a courtesy service. It is a bit annoying to be nickled and dimed at a luxury place.

Overall we were happy with our stay and would certainly consider staying here again if we are ever back in Cusco.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank amk26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 September 2011

Cusco is a lively city and from this hotel you are just 3 minutes walking from downtown.
The standard suites are nice but nothing special: if you can afford it ask for the royal suite... Unbelivable!!
Nice and helpfull staff.

  • Stayed: August 2011
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Thank Fedefulvio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 August 2011

We stayed two nights here and were very pleased. The location was great, the courtyard beautiful and the service was fantastic. The rooms were very nice with a huge bathroom and a nice balcony overlooking the courtyard. The restaurant food was good but service was quite slow. Only real complaint is the lack of storage space. Very difficult to unpack. A very good option for the three of us as we had two large beds. The decor was very modern in the public spaces but still comfortable. Nice bar area and lounge. This hotel is one block from La Casona, Map cafe and Hotel Monasterio and two blocks from Cicciolina. Very convenient. The staff was wonderful.

  • Stayed: August 2011
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Thank HoustonTellmemore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 August 2011

We stayed here for 5 nights in Suite 15, early July 2011 (5,6,7,9,10 - 8Jul --> one night in Macchu Picchu).
- Great room, very big, modern touch.
- Nice details (e.g. coctails and small appetizers delivered to your room)
- Conveniently located in town, you can walk to the centre in 5 min (downhil, so count 10 min to get back as it is uphill ;-)
- Wonderfull staff, get to know you very rapidly ("you want extra leaves in your coco thee, we remember from yesterday, here it is for you")
- We did an online checkin with our computer in the room and sent the boarding passes to the reception. 5 minutes later they were delivered to our room in a nice enveloppe.
- It is not a big hotel, really boutique style, very quiet, organised around an indoor court
- On 11Jul it was my birthday, got a cake that day. Nice touch !
Would definitely recommend this.
Regards,
Y&H (Belgium)

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank yvesandheidi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2011

I stayed two nights. The room and bathroom were HUGE and I absolutely loved the decor. I had a nice balcony with a view of the White Statue on the mountaintop. Breakfast was delish and the service was great. The front desk ladies were very friendly and professional.

I initially wanted to stay at Monestario but it was completely booked. I took a tour of the Monestario and was very glad that I was at Casa Cartagena instead because it was a lot more modern and chic.

I enjoyed the complimentary drink that was brought to my room in the evening. I think there were snacks too, if I recall correctly. I asked that water be brought to my room and the chef brought it. I placed a room service order directly with him while he was there and he even returned later to deliver my food. Great customer service! Love it!

In summary, excellent location, good food, lovely decor.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank ToophDoctor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2011

We were upgraded to this hotel on arrival, probabally because the tourist numbers were down due to the strikes and issues. But if you read my review of the other hotel, then we were really lucky! The rooms was truly huge. Great beds, quite modernist inside but old building and set around a courtyard. huge balcony on which we had breakfast brought every mornings. nice cocktails and canapes in the room in the evening.l Great and massive bathroom. Spa is also nice, we had a very large jacuzzi to ourselves! Location is prime, close to the Plaza des Armas, and centre of town. Staff friendly. We had a master suite, and the only fault is that we were over reception, and they played music really loudly from around 6am. To the extent that I actually went down twice to get it turned down.But if you have one of the other rooms this wont be an issue. I would recommmend this hotel. We didnt try the restaurant, because the food options in cuzco and great!

Room Tip: Dont go for one over reception!
See more room tips
  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank sbryb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa Cartagena Boutique Hotel & Spa

Address: Pumacurco 336 | Centro Historico, Cusco, Peru
Region: Peru > Cusco Region > Cusco
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Cusco
#5 Family Hotel in Cusco
#6 Business Hotel in Cusco
#7 Romantic Hotel in Cusco
Price Range: £166 - £414 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Casa Cartagena Boutique Hotel & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa Cartagena CuscoHigh in the Peruvian Andes lies the historic city of Cuzco, famous for its unique blend of Spanish and Incan cultures. Located just off a tranquil square behind the main plaza of Cuzco, Casa Cartagena Boutique Hotel & Spa Cusco emerges after years of restoration, which respected the original design of the historic house, to become one of the most exclusive boutique hotels in the city. Its walls of carved stone, which combines warmth, elegance and perfection, invite you to experience the fascinating magic and traditional mysticism that will transport you through time in this historic Spanish house declared a cultural heritage site of Peru.Its lovely atmosphere was built on an ancient Incan site, occupied by the ruling nobility of that time and from which it takes its name: Casa Cartagena, former property of the local Spanish ruler of Cuzco, Don Fernando Cartagena and Santa Cruz.This luxury hotel in Cuzco is an intimate refuge that has only sixteen spacious and comfortable suites, which perfectly blend the modern with the ancestral and luxury with the historical. The rooms are distributed symmetrically along a spacious patio of your dreams where time is suspended. It is located in the historic center of Cuzco, which was declared by UNESCO as a world heritage site.Recovery from an exhausting trip to Machu Picchu or the Sacred Valley of the Incas with our Qoya Spa will be something truly unequalled. It can be perfectly complemented with a delicious dinner in our restaurant which offers the best of local cuisine, "La bodega de la Chola", where poet Pablo Neruda was inspired and Che Guevara shared bohemian nights; it is considered one of the best restaurants in Cuzco.All of these unique features of Casa Cartagena and our warm and personalized service will make your stay in Cuzco an experience you will never forget. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Casa Cartagena And Spa
Hotel Casa Cartagena Cusco

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