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“Stunning Views but OK Service”

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Hostal El Santuario
Ranked #18 of 29 Hotels in Aguas Calientes
Reviewed 28 April 2012

Hostal El Santuario is conveniently located right at the base of Machu Picchu and is only a few minutes walk from Aguas Calientes' main train station (the train station where all of the tourist trains like Peru Rail come in), the Machu Picchu bus station and a bunch of local restaurants and shops. It was a good location for people in my family who grew tired of walking after days of hiking in Machu Picchu and on the Inca Trail.

However, immediately when my family and I came in to check into the hotel (yes, this is more of a hotel than a hostal despite the name of this place) the staff said that we needed our passports and immigration cards to check in. We expected to be asked for our passports, which is customary when traveling and checking into foreign hotels. However, half of my family had left our immigration cards in Cusco, and we didn't know that we needed them to check into the hotel. The hotel never notified us nor wrote on their website that we needed our immigration cards in order to stay at the hotel. Because of this, the hotel said that they would "forget about our oversight" if we paid them a "fee." Well, to say the least, we thought that this was pretty dishonest. Long story short, we agreed to fax our immigration cards to the hotel immediately when we got back to Cusco, but, of course, it turned out to be quite a hassle. On this end, I would not rate the hotel very highly when it comes to integrity and service. It turned out to be quite a headache and a bad way to start our stay in an otherwise pleasant hotel.

Now, onto more positive aspects of this hotel. The hotel is very clean; they offer a wonderful and complimentary buffet breakfast complete with eggs, toast, coffee, local fruits, hot cocoa, tea, yogurt, cereals, cold cuts, juices, etc. (a wonderful way to start your day of hiking in Machu Picchu); they have free internet access in the lobby via a PC computer (no wifi, though); complimentary tea served at all hours in the lobby (very soothing!); and, of course, they have a fantastic view of the gushing and lush Urubamba River. It's pretty cool to be lulled to sleep by the flowing river running outside your room.

I'd say book this place, but make sure that you either bring your immigration card with you for check-in or be sure to know how to deal with BS if the hotel throws it your way.

Room Tip: Try to get a room with a view of the Urubamba River. Also, be aware that moths love to get in the ro...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank AskLonga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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32 - 38 of 130 reviews

Reviewed 22 February 2012

Stayed for two nights in a nice room with balcony overlooking the valley and the river. Go for the rooms with riverview. The other rooms faced the backside of the building and looked very dark.
Very helpfull and friendly staff, nice terrace with complementary tea. The breakfast was a little less than ok.

  • Stayed: February 2012
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Thank MarianneSK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2012

Hotel was fine- it was clean and the staff were very friendly and helpful. Nothing outstanding but good for 1 night. Breakfast was good.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank NancTZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 January 2012

Great location near the river away from city noises; clean but service was poor.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank Marc B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 December 2011

We had a river view room on the second floor. The view of the Urubamba river is terrific. The room was basic and clean. The shower had tons of hot water. The room was fairly small but just fine. The staff seems a little dazed but we didn't have any problems. The place wasn't too busy. There is a single computer in the lobby available to guests. The food was fresh, nothing special. There are tons of places in town with great food so no problem there. When we were a bit cold in the room, the staff did give us an additional heater. Good value, and a great view!

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

The view from the hotel is incredible. Facing the Urubamba River and the beginning of the road to Machu Picchu. Comfortable and clean. Attentive staff.

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank ohacio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 November 2011

The staff was not very communicative and the rooms were not that nice. Mind you, it calls it self a hostel, and I was expecting a "hotel", so in a sense it's my bad. I had to check out at 12:00 but didn't need to catch a train until 5. As I was sick that day, I asked them if I could stay in my room until the train and they said I would have to pay an extra $17. Which was fine, but during that whole period, the cleaning staff used my room as a home base for cleaning the other rooms on the floor and never left, so I couldn't use it. Therefore I stayed sick in the lobby. When I explained that the cleaning staff was in my room and I would like my $17 back, they made a big production about it, getting other staff and managers to agree to it. There was an unpleasant odor, but to be fair, the whole town doesn't smell too pleasant. At the bar, I had the only pisco sour in three weeks that didn't taste good. Even I, a humble foreigner, learned quickly how to make a great pisco sour. In sum, as a "hostel", maybe it meets the needs of those expecting a hostel. I wasn't expecting that.

Room Tip: Try for a room with the view of the front street so you can see the rivers and mountains
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled solo
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Thank Roodboyslade
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hostal El Santuario

Address: Road Aguas Calientes | Km 111.5, Aguas Calientes, Machu Picchu, Peru
Region: Peru > Cusco Region > Sacred Valley > Machu Picchu > Aguas Calientes
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 29 Hotels in Aguas Calientes
Price Range: £57 - £68 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 15
Also Known As:
Hostal El Santuario Hotel Aguas Calientes
Hostal El Santuario Aguas Calientes

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