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Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa
Ranked #17 of 155 Hotels in Cartagena
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 31 March 2014

This is my second, and last, stay at the beautiful Charleston Cartegena. Our room faced the open courtyard. But, the door was warped. So an insidious amount of loud, thumping music made its way into our room, usually starting around 1am. When I complained, I was told 'it is not our business which is providing the music.' Given the amount of tax dollars being paid for the room, the hotel should have some leverage to get the city to bring it down many decibels. The hotel offered to move us but, really, where would anyone in that hotel escape the noise? Also, we tired of the same breakfast buffet and $14 bottles of water. There are so many great boutique hotels opening up every month in Cartagena. One doesn't have to put up with this hotel's imperfections.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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3  Thank mike6161102
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 11 March 2014

I stayed at the Santa Teresa Hotel with my husband for two nights at the final stage of a business trip to Colombia. Coming from chilly Ireland I loved the al fresco dining in La Terazza with its amazing rooftop pool and views over the nearby San Pedro Claver church and the amazing view of Cartagena Bay then to relax by the pool in the sunshine with one of the many signature cocktails.

The service is top class the staff all have a lovely friendly and relaxed manner which made us feel very comfortable and welcome guests. The combination of culture, restaurants, fun, ambiance Salsa music and an evening dancing on the city walls in front of the hotel made for a wonderful stay. Definately one of our best hotel experiences.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Republican wing which was built (early 20thC) onto the older 17th Colonial wing. T...
  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank TrionaMacGiollaRi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2014

Good location, friendly staff. The rooms were big, fantastic breakfast! The pool is not that huge, but if you consider that it was built inside the historic center, it is great. When I arrived the main entrance was closed because of a wedding party, but it was not a big deal.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled solo
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Thank fers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2014

I just got an email from the Charleston prompting me to review my stay at the hotel.
Let me describe my experience this way:
My wife and I had heard great things about the Sofitel Santa Clara Hotel in Cartagena, but when we decided to stay there for our three nights in town it turned out only two nights were available. We were disappointed, but after just a little more digging around, a perfectly acceptable choice for our third night came to light: the Charleston.
We were not looking forward to changing hotels twice in three nights so we pursued Santa Clara to let us know if a third night's stay were to become available, but it never happened.

Fast forward to check-in: Santa Clara let us know they could now accommodate our third night.
That was perfect for us and we took the room. We got to our room, in Santa Clara, and made a call to Charleston who informed us we would be violating their cancellation policy (72 hours) if we were to take the room and would be responsible for the full $325 plus taxes and fees.

We were far from happy, but we got American Express travel services to call on our behalf since they made the reservation and figured they may be able to negotiate a courtesy since we're still more than 48 hours from our check in.
No dice. AmEx called us back to say Charleston won't budge.

So, last ditch effort is to get the hotel manager from Santa Clara see if he can work something out with Charleston for us. He called and got nowhere. Charleston would get the full amount from our credit card whether or not we take the room.
So, we took the room.

We left our beautiful, sunny, balconied room with a sea view overlooking the pool area at Santa Clara and went to the Charleston.

Our room at the Charleston was...let me try to describe it.
It was street level off an interior courtyard with an unobstructed glass door that people in the hotel could look right into. So we had to keep that closed with the blinds drawn all the while.
In the room was also a window on the street side of the building but when I opened the blinds the view was of the back of two taxi drivers' heads. This was the source of the chatter I've been hearing since walking into our room. Drivers hang out there and smoke while waiting for fares from the hotel evidently.
So, we had to keep those blinds closed tightly as well.

Basically, we had a windowless room on the ground floor. And the hotel's wi-fi didn't work in this closet of a room either.

I called and complained reasonably, but assertively with the front desk and they said they'd call me back but didn't. When I called the second time (30+ mins later), they told me the hotel was fully booked and no other rooms were available all weekend.

This is Valentine's Day, for what it's worth.

Again, I expressed grave disappointment and they blew me off just like they did everyone else.

So, then I was livid. THIS was the room I couldn't cancel at 48 hours? They're so, so busy yet they couldn't let me out of that reservation?

Was this even a real room? It looked like they moved the Business Center machines out of it and moved a bed in. Honestly, this was probably the original purpose of this area. Again, we were left to choose between natural light and privacy/security in our room and this cost us just under $400.

This is supposed to be a good hotel. Our room was *absurd*.

I could forgive the nonexistent service at the open-air restaurant out front or the problems going on there, but I'm stuck on our room.
I could talk about the smoking they allow at the tightly-packed pool lounge chairs area, but I'm stuck on our room.
I could even get into how our room for two seemed to contain one of everything, even robe and slippers, but it's really the room itself that I'll speak of for the rest of my life.

To end this rant, the next day we moved on from Cartagena to Bogotā.
Funny enough, in La Zona Rosa, we were faced with a choice of two hotels residing right next to each other: Sofitel and Charleston. Guess where we stayed? And loved it. Hint: It’s not the Charleston.

Charleston, you really didn't do the right thing. I hope you understand that.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank L_Americano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
charlestonHotelGroup, Director Comercial at Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa, responded to this reviewResponded 21 February 2014

Dear mr ______

Dear Guest,

On behalf of Hoteles Charleston We are very sorry to hear about your experience while staying with us. We reviewed our records, and understand your complain, but we were in High ocupancy which made it imposible for us to provide you with another room. You stayed in the colonial side of the hotel an area that has a unique charm as it is one of cartagena's national monuments, We are very sorry to hear that you did not apreciate the history that this area of the hotel represents.

Thank you very much for your time.

Regards,
Ana Maria Tello.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2014

The hotel is located inside the "walled city", the old part of Cartagena, Colombia, well located, beautiful rooms and its restaurant has a nice outdoor setting; but don't let this fool you, because the room prices are extremely high and watch out! they charged you even the supposedly complimentary water and the telephone calls you received (not just the ones you did). Ther wi-fi internet is just terrible, you got better wi-fi in some public squares in the city.
The breakfast buffet never changed, not bad, but it was expensive, didn't worth the money you paid for it.
And be careful when you're doing your check out, they try to charge a supposedly non-show night to another participant of the seminar, even when he probed he called to say he was going to get later.

Room Tip: Try to get a room close to the central patio and in the lower floors, you got better wi-fi signal (n...
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled on business
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2  Thank Andrea D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 February 2014

My husband and I were attracted to this restaurant because of its beautiful outdoor setting. But the remarkable ambiance is all this place has to offer. The food was the worst I had during my entire trip to Colombia - literally. The service was also awful. Our waiter practically ignored us to stand at attention at another table where the guests seemed to be ordering expensive champagne and were more nicely dressed than we were (still in our clothes from the day). I'm not sure if that was about the gratuity, or what, but we couldn't even get salt for our underwhelming food because of his complete inattentiveness. There are so many wonderful restaurants in this beautiful city, don't waste your time or money here.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Liz M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2014 via mobile

Food at the outdoor restaurant was bland and overpriced.

Tomato gazpacho tasted like a can of cold pizza sauce. Patacones were uninteresting and overly salted. Beef carpaccio was decent quality meat but parmesan flavoring unhelpful.

Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Sierra M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
charlestonHotelGroup, Gerente at Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa, responded to this reviewResponded 4 February 2014

Dear Guest,

Thank you for choosing Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa and for writing your review. We are sorry to hear about your inconveniences in the restaurant, your opinions will be taken into account to improve our hotel services in order to offer a better stay for you and future guests.

Best Regards,

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa

Address: Carrera 3 # 31-23 | Centro Plaza de Santa Teresa, Cartagena, Colombia
Region: Colombia > Bolivar Department > Cartagena District > Cartagena
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Business Hotel in Cartagena
#8 Spa Hotel in Cartagena
#12 Luxury Hotel in Cartagena
#19 Family Hotel in Cartagena
#31 Romantic Hotel in Cartagena
Price Range: £190 - £695 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 87
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa is located whithin Cartagena's walled city, a UNESCO World Heritage site. With a privileged location that is blocks away from the Cartagena Convention Center and just minutes away from the contemporary city, the history, flavor and mystique of Cartagena are all found here, at our hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Charleston Hotel Cartagena
Hotel Santa Teresa Cartagena
Santa Teresa Cartagena

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