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“Beautiful resort, but with growing pains”

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Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa
Ranked #29 of 155 Hotels in Cartagena
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 6 January 2012

I went to Las Americas on a package all-inclusive trip with Nolitours. The resort recently started having an all-inclusive option, and seems to be experiencing growing pains. For example, although our package said all drinks were included our Nolitour representative (Rafael) told us we would have to pay extra for any drinks that weren't beer or rum-based drinks. Eventually (after many guests complained) we were allowed to have all drinks included. However, throughout the week we and other Nolitour guests continued to have charges to our room for things that we supposed to be included in our package.

In addition, the resort seems to be in some sort of transition period. Many of the restaurants have multiple menus, sometimes they're open for dinner, sometimes not (there are no hours posted), sometimes we were charged for food or drink that was supposed to be included. All in all it was confusing.

Other cons: the walls are extremely thin (we could hear every word that the people next door to us said), you have to get up extremely early to reserve a chair by the beach (they were usually all gone by 7-7:30am) and most of the employees speak little to no English (the majority of the hotel's clientele is Colombian).

The absolute worst part of our trip was New Years Eve. The resort held a massive outdoor concert on the beach immediately outside the hotel rooms. The concert was not for hotel guests, and it would have cost us $200 each for a ticket. Our Nolitour representative told us the concert would go until 2am, which was bad enough. However, the concert ended up going until 4:30am, with music so loud that it shook our room - sleep was impossible. This to me showed how inconsiderate Las America's management is, and how totally indifferent they our to their guests. The hotel wanted to make some extra money on this concert, and didn't care at all that this would keep its guests up all night long.

We did have a good vacation. On the pros side, Cartagena is really beautiful, and the resort (which is about a 20 minute drive away) has daily shuttles into the city. The food's not bad, though there's not as much of it as you would expect in a traditional all-inclusive resort in Mexico or the Dominican. The resort is right on the beach and is nice (though crowded) and safe. The employees were, for the part, quite friendly. I would consider going back to Las Americas - however, I would wait a year or so until they've got all their management issues sorted out.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank WonderingCanadian416
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GerenciaLasAmericas, Community Manager at Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa, responded to this reviewResponded 25 April 2012

Dear guest,

We are working hard on improving our all inclusive plan in order to full fill your expectations on our hotels services. We made some changes on the menus of our resturants and bars, and we are including new and better services for our guest of this plan.
We also changed our policies of the New Years party so we will have special fares for our guest in this special day. We normaly have big events on the hotels beach, so we offer to our guest earcovers that can be request to the reception staff.
In order to have a better service on our beach we have already set new “kiosks” so more of our guest can enjoy it without having to wake up early.

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Reviewed 2 January 2012

This hotel is not only overpriced, they seem eager to squeeze every penny from the guest's pocket. I requested drinking water after my workout in the gym, and they told me they would charge $2.50 for a small-size bottled tap water (on top of a $225 for a third rate room). Same thing at the breakfast buffet. I drink several glasses of water first thing in the day, but there was no water in sight. I had to ask for it, and they made it sound like a very special and unusual request. What a Sahara!
I have spent my Christmas vacation here several times (Casa del Mar), but this is certainly the last. Rooms show their age, the bathroom was plain and lacking even a small luxury. They were renovating several areas in high season, without warning or compensation for the inconveniences. Service is slow, my room was made very late, and waiters seem to disappear all at once in the restaurants.
Having stayed recently in a luxurious all-inclusive resort in Punta Cana, where two people can have good food and alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks (and, yes, water) available all day for just $200 per day, I know where I'll spend my next vacation.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Gundisalvus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 December 2011

People are friendly, food and restorants are decent, rooms are ok, beach is good and service is average. Nice place to go eith kids? They have excelent bus shuttle to downtown. This hotel used to be a better class before, but now, they are change target. If you are looking fro quiet and peacefull place, this is not the option.

  • Stayed: December 2011
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3  Thank albertoColombia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2011

Just returned from a week in Cartagena with my wife. The food was very good and consisted of mostly traditional Columbian flavors, you won't go hungry. There were restrictions on the menu for the all inclusive both for food and drink if doing a la carte, but the buffet was very satisfying for all meals. Far from 5 star gourmet but very good none the less. The rooms are standard, but for the time we spent in it, they satisfied our needs, and were always cleaned by the time we returned from the beach. The staff are great, and speaking Spanish would certainly be to your advantage. Claudia at the bar is really good. As far as nightlife goes, the Old City is where to be in the evenings. There are some amazing restaraunts and the people watching is great.
We did a private tour with a gentleman named JJ. It was well worth doing it this way rather than on a bus with 40 other people.
A wonderful place to go, and a fantastic country to visit.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Coops_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2011

Stayed with 1 year old. Hotel has lots of amenities (waterslide, kids playground, minigolf, decent beach, huge pool,...)
Gigantic hotel, with full service. Slightly old exterior, but rooms were very nice. Staff nice.

The food is average (in main restaurant next to pool). Avoid the restaurant in the newer part (Torre delMar) in top floor. Hardly ever had such a bad meal - across the board bad.

Beach OK, but not great. I wouldn't go to Cartagena for a Beach stay... Seems Sta Marta or Rosario much better.

The price (250USD for a double) is too much for sure.

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled with family
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4  Thank oxygen11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 September 2011

We stayed at the Las Americas resort for 3 days in August 2011. This was our first trip to Colombia & we were excited. A day before we left, I called ahead to request a room close to or overlooking the pool & restaurants. When we arrived, we were met at the airport by a smiling staff member. 5 minutes later, we were at the hotel! It has 2 wings- the older one where we stayed & the newer more modern one. We specifically choose the older wing as it was closer to the pool with the water slide, which was where the boys wanted to be. As requested, our room overlooked the children's pool.

Our room was adequate- 2 fairly sized beds, a nice sized bathroom & a hammock in the balcony overlooking the pool. Breakfast was adequate & they started early. When we would go down at 6 Am, they would already have things ready. Worked great for us as we liked to get an early start to the day to beat the heat. They also have a couple of restaurants onsite. The first day, we arrived at lunchtime & so headed there to eat. We were the only people in the restaurant & have a nice time chatting with the waiter there, Carmello, who had more questions about the usa to ask us, then we had to ask him;-) We enjoyed our meal there & had lunch again on our second day there. The food was good & for a family of 4, the average bill was in the range of $50. Worth it to eat there in peace & look out at the beach. We had all our dinners in the walled city.

The pools are nice & big. The grounds are well spaced out & well maintained. The boys loved the resident parrots, who would fly down to see what we were having for breakfast & actually eat what was offered. Our boys really enjoyed feeding them in the mornings.They also have a pool with turtles. We also checked out the modern wing, which had an infinity pool. They went swimming there too & also visited the very nice coffee shop they have in that wing.

The best feature of the hotel is the free shuttle that they have running several times a day. The hotel is well outside the city limits & without that free shuttle, it would have been a hassle getting to & from the old city at night. We used it every day & sometimes several times a day to go back & forth. The first shuttle is at 8 AM in the morning & the last back from the old city was at 9.25 PM, perfect for having a nice dinner in the walled city & getting back in time for bed.

The only thing that bothered us a bit as the prices of the mini-bar in the room. On our 2 full days of excursions, we just took a few drink bottles & some small snacks for the boys. The bill for 2 days came to more than $50. Definitely the most expensive M&Ms & Oreos we have ever had! So if you have kids, make sure to buy your own snacks & leave the mini-bar alone.

I would highly staying here if you have kids. Its great for the kids with a nice private beach with no vendors.Nice pools Otherwise choose a hotel in the walled city, where all the action is. For a family with kids, would absolutely recommend it

Stayed: August 2011, travelled with family
9  Thank manasi_kar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GerenciaLasAmericas, Gerente at Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa, responded to this reviewResponded 28 November 2011

Dear manasi_kar,

For Las Americas Resort and Centro de Convenciones is a pleasure that you and his family have had an unforgettable, full of tranquility and experiences in each of our services, which are designed to spend a wonderful vacation.

With respect to the mini-bar prices we apologize if I upset. But in fact, already done a rethink on their presentation and cost of each product. We hope that when I return to Colombia, you can enjoy these changes and have another wonderful experience with your children or partner in any of our two hotels: Casa de Playa or Torre del Mar.

For any other information you want, you can follow us on Twitter: @ HotelAmericasCo or on our Facebook page: Hotel Las Americas - Cartagena.

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Reviewed 9 September 2011

If you are looking for a secluded place in Cartagena to enjoy your days by a quite beach, this is the right place to be. Having a hospitality background and currently working in the industry, beleive me I check absolutely EVERYTHING. Do not expect a modern resort, because you will need to stay at their new tower next door. But if you are traveling with children like we were, it was the correct location. The service was excellent any time of the day and the entire facility was always spotless (you can tell that that they had enough staff 24/7). Five minutes from the airport and very close to most atractions (the resort shuttle was a great feature). The food quality was very good for all three meals and the kindness of the staff to serve you at all time was amazing. I recommend you request a room on the third floor as you get a better view of the ocean. Compliments to the live entertainment every night!!! it adds value to the lounge areas near the main lobby. To tell you the truth, I had high expectations and they were definitely met. Thank you to all the staff for making our stay so enjoyable, you made the difference.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with family
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5  Thank CLAUDIA G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GerenciaLasAmericas, Gerente at Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa, responded to this reviewResponded 28 November 2011

Dear Claudia,

For Las Americas Resort and Centro de Convenciones is a pleasure that you and his family have had an unforgettable, full of tranquility and experiences in each of our services, which are designed to spend a wonderful vacation.

We hope to return soon and can enjoy the inspiration that gives us the rooms, the beach and food. A huge hug and thank you for choosing our home, which is also his home.

For any other information you want, you can follow us on Twitter: @ HotelAmericasCo or on our Facebook Page: Hotel Las Americas - Cartagena.

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Additional Information about Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa

Address: Anillo Vial Sector Cielo Mar, Cartagena 130001, Colombia
Region: Colombia > Bolivar Department > Cartagena District > Cartagena
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 155 Hotels in Cartagena
Price Range: £76 - £210 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa 4*
Number of rooms: 251
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Las Americas Casa de Playa hotel is a tropical resort located on the Caribbean Sea in the northern of Cartagena de Indias. It offers 2 swimming pools, 2 bars: La Isla and El Chicho; mini golf course, tennis court and the kids club "Star Captain". There are boutiques, jewelry store and free WiFi in all areas. Rooms at the Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa feature private balconies with hammocks, air conditioning, ceiling fan, minibar, free WiFi and satellite flat-screen TV. The Hotel has the Meson de Don Cristobal restaurant where guests can enjoy a variety of traditional and international dishes and between the resorts garden has the Fogon del Navegante restaurant, where succulent steaks and grilled seafood are offered, accompanied by fresh salads . Hotel Las Americas Casa de Playa is 5 minutes drive from Rafael Nunez International Airport and 10 minutes drive to the walled city of Cartagena. It has reception service 24 hours and free private parking. ... more   less 
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