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“Great stain in Santa Marta (Colombia)”

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Casa de Isabella - a Kali Hotel
Ranked #3 of 67 Hotels in Santa Marta
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 8 July 2012

I wanted to surprise my wife for our very first wedding anniversary; and after looking for some cities and places I decided for Santa Marta and Casa de Isabella. My decision was based on quality, and because it seemed like a quite romantic place. Besides, when I called them to book, they were very kind to me and when I told them it was for our anniversary I was offered special treats to make our stay an unforgettable one. And it was so!

They picked up us at the airport and the driver kept our destination secret to my wife, so it was really a surprise for her when we arrived. The place was exquisitely decorated and the attention from the very beginning was special. Our room was not ready (the previous guest had been smoking even tough it is a non smoking hotel), and they wouldn't give us the room until it was totally clean. In the meantime they offered us another room to change clothes so we could go out and enjoy the city.

Back in the hotel, our room -suit number 10- was ready and was even more than we expected in every aspect: huge comfortable bed, great bathroom (with natural light), a balcony were you could see the tamarind tree, and a second floor (a terrace, in fact), with our own private jacuzzi, and outdoor furniture; and what made it even more special: the view of the Santa Marta bay in all its beauty.

The hotel only offers breakfast (I'll talk more about it later); but I wanted a special dinner for me and my wife in our anniversary night. So people in the front desk helped me to contact a restaurant and they made arrangements to make it possible to bring the food to our suit (in behalf of the restaurant, they made my wife's favorite dish, even though it was not part of the menu). And they contacted a flower store, and decorated the room for us (roses everywhere). I took my wife for a walk while they secretly set up the suit. I hadn't to move a finger.

My wife was very surprised when we returned and found our room fully decorated, with a table and chairs, roses, soft music, a bottle of wine, soft light, and a waiter waiting for us to serve dinner. That moment, and my wife's face and happiness, made it worthy. I must say it was a great weekend we spend there and, indeed, an unforgettable one.

We had only one complain: breakfast time. There was only one person in the kitchen and many guests to attend at the same time; so it took us an hour to have our breakfast and it was poor. And this happened to us the two mornings we were there. It was particularly annoying the second morning because they knew we had to leave for the airport and the previous night we specifically asked for the breakfast early in the morning. We had to take a "second" breakfast at the airport.

If they improve their breakfast service, there would be no complains at all. It's a great place to stay, and a very romantic one.

Room Tip: If you like the sun and enjoy privacy, as well as beautiful views, get a suit with your private terr...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Diogenescl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 13 July 2012

First of all thank you so much for the wonderful review I think it shows how hard we really do try to accomadate our guests and reviews like this are greatly appreciated.

Secondly it shows you stayed in February yet review was just published now. I am not sure why Trip Advisor just published now. Anyway we have worked and changed a lot especially with breakfast system. We hired two additional people and now have a breakfast table with breads, cerals, juice and coffees as well. So now the our employees can get breakfasts out quickly and guests have been extremely happy. We even added Shade Sails over breakfast area and additional table on terrace with another shade Sail for additonal seating. Thanks so much again for the review as we are always trying to improve and day by day we are getting every bit better. We have grown so much in the last year.

We are solely focused on being the best we can be and have invested heavily in our staff and our guest processes. I believe we need to always try to improve as that is what will make Casa de Isabella the best choice in Santa Marta.

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372 - 378 of 654 reviews

Reviewed 7 July 2012

This remodelled house near the center of santa marta is the place to stay if what you want is a good location and great service, not for the beach as that is not really close. All the staff makes you feel like at home. The breakfast from the arepa to the eggs are remarkable, the price seemend of to me for the comfort. As a typical boutique there is no restaurant or gym. The small pool and terrace are nice.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled on business
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Thank kcanavan2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 13 July 2012

Thanks so much for the review. When we read these we know we are getting better and these reviews are our rewards.

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Reviewed 29 June 2012

I was pleasantly surprised with this hotel, with big rooms, clean, comfy linens and sheets and a spacious and clean bathroom. The room came equipped with almost everything, and had a great manual that included everything from ordering food, to how to call different countries. I was quite impressed with the level of detail that the manual had as this is not something you would typically find in other hotels (speaking of the level of detail here). The products that the hotel had were also top notch (L'occitaine).
The service was excellent. There were some minor glitches, for example, we called and ordered breakfast for the next morning and had asked that the breakfast be delivered to our room, but somehow there was a miscommunication, and it was not. Nevertheless, the staff was super helpful in helping us book taxis, finding a hotel to stay in our next destination, and giving us general advise.
What was also impressive was that we left to go to Tayrona park the 2nd evening we were there, and left our luggage with these guys. On return from the park the following day, we were both very muddy and needed showers so that we could head to the airport to catch our flight to our next destination. The manager graciously allowed us to use one of the rooms to freshen up and get dressed for our flight.
Overall, having stayed in several 5 star hotels before, I would definitely rate this on par with other 4 or 5 star hotels and recommend others to stay here.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank Neeta_Maharaj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 10 July 2012

Thanks for the great review and especially the part about the manual. We spent a lot of time trying to build out all information we can offer guests in both spanish and english. We are constantly building it and as you can see is why we have a ringed binder. Thanks again and we await your return!

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Reviewed 27 June 2012

We had an amazing time at the small top notch hotel. The rooms were beautiful and the service was extremely helpful, friendly and warm. The rooms are light and airy with great touches . We loved it and almost didn't want to leave!

Room Tip: The suites are fantastic but we also stayed in the other rooms on the second floor and they were bi...
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank LeoraK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 10 July 2012

Thank you for your wonderful review. We really feel we have a great team and it is nice to see these reviews.

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Reviewed 20 June 2012

The place is super gorgeous, a garden style small hotel, appointed with every possible luxury - giant fluffy robes, a giant tv with access to youtube, apple tv where you can watch tons of different movies, for free! We stayed on the ground floor. Our A/C unit didn't work, it just blew ever so slightly cooler than room temperature air at us. Then there were the mosquitoes. Colombian mosquitoes don't make any noise like other mosquitoes, and they have a maddeningly erratic flying pattern which makes them VERY hard to kill. We had to stay up quite late trying to kill the mosquitoes, and just gave up exhausted after killing 3, because it was 1am and we were no closer to finding and killing it than at midnight. We did kill it the next morning, but its hard to sleep when you are thinking of a mosquito biting you at night. The hotel needs to spray their garden area with insecticide, make sure there is no standing water, whatever it takes to stop the infestation.

Room Tip: Maybe the upper levels aren't plagued by mosquitoes?
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank SarahDC7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 21 June 2012

First I would like to apologize for the mosquitos. We however do fumigate regularly and it is a bit of an issue as we have to close the hotel. We recently closed for three days in May in which this was done as well as some other hotel maintenance. The Caribe does have quite a bit of mosquitos at this time of year and is why we recently took the opportunity of a slower week to fumigate. The issue is that it is impossible to completely cure as you saw with your stay in Cartagena from your other review. I wish you could have alerted the desk as we would have gladly moved you to another room immediately if we had known of the issue. I hope you accept my apologizes and we can make it up to you on your return.

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Reviewed 11 June 2012

Nice rooms but if you can ask for a different one than 4-5 since its near the open kitchen where they prepare breakfeast...slighly noisy in the early morning
Nices rooms wents with 6 collegues for a course thus had a chance to see several rooms
Fantastic number 10 with roof access and jakuzi with a beautifull night view toward harbour
This area improved notably in santa marta hotel well located
Nice attention from personal offering juice while registrering will also provide u free of charge with an ipad tablet

Room Tip: Ask for rooms on second or third floor
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled solo
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Thank ProfesorX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Casa de Isabella - a Kali Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 14 June 2012

Thanks for the nice review. We have been working on a solution for room 4 and 5 and this should be resolved within the next two weeks. We also generally offer these rooms out at a discounted rate to compensate. Thanks again for a great review as we are really trying to make ourselves better everyday and know we can always improve.

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Reviewed 3 June 2012

Booked hotel two days before arriving in santa marta and could not be happier. Beautiful hotel with every amenity imaginable, including free ipad rentals, unlimited free calling to the US, delicious breakfast, gorgeous pool, super comfortable and beautiful rooms. The staff was amazing, very knowledgable and helpful. Our group of 6 all came down with a terrible stomach illness and the staff was wonderful by calling a doctor to the hotel and assisting in any way they could.
Overall beautiful hotel, very safe, wonderful staff - highly highly recommended.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank EKCarey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa de Isabella - a Kali Hotel

Address: Carrera 2 N. 19-20 | Centro, Santa Marta, Colombia (Formerly Casa de Isabella Hotel Boutique)
Phone Number:
Region: Colombia > Magdalena Department > Santa Marta District > Santa Marta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 67 Hotels in Santa Marta
Price Range: £54 - £93 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Casa de Isabella - a Kali Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa de Isabella pays homage to the charm and history of Santa Marta's colonial era while ushering in a future rich in culture and beauty. Founded in 1525, Santa Marta is Colombia's oldest city. Its natural port provided a refuge from long journeys on Spanish galleons, and its position on the north coast allowed explorers to use it as a base camp for trips to the interior. Casa de Isabella sits in the Centro Historico, the Old City of Santa Marta. This area, first developed after the Manzanares river receded in 1850, holds buildings that reflect traditional Mudejar architecture. The building's original owners inhabited the house for four generations and contributed significantly to the city's growth in the 19th and 20th centuries. In renovating the hotel for the modern era, we consistently chose classic style, maintaining the original integrity of the building and its surrounding neighborhood. Our guests feel the simplicity of Santa Marta's natural charm while enjoying modern comforts. From the greenery of the courtyard to the intimacy of a personal rooftop pool, Casa de Isabella fuses the tranquility of Colombian culture with top quality hotel conveniences. With lighting fast Wi-Fi, complimentary I-Pads, and Apple TV, as well as restored furniture and handmade adornments, this hotel stays anchored in tradition while looking ahead toward a bright future. We have proudly renovated the most beautiful boutique hotel in the Colombian Caribbean. ... more   less 
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