We spent 4 days during what seemed to still be a soft-opening phase of the very new, very clean, semi-upscale Grand Crucero hotel, located about a 20-minute walk (or short bus/taxi ride) from the downtown area in the direction of the National Park.
The bus/taxi stop is half a block away, very convenient to travel to all the attractions:
o Iguazu Falls National Park (Parque Nacional Cataratas del Iguazu)
o Animal refuge Guira Oga
o Triple Boarder Milestone Argentina - Paraguay - Brazil
o Puerto Iguazu downtown shopping and restaurant area
Our upper-floor room was well furnished, wonderfully spacious and modern, with floor-to-ceiling windows and a sliding door to a private terrace featuring stylish lounge chairs and affording a commanding (though not too interesting) view of the area. The bathroom was on the small side, the shower area could use more light and shelves for the necessary toiletries. The A/C was powerful.
The staff was generally courteous, but often seemed unprepared to meet even basic service needs of the guest. This caused confusion and delays at different points:
• printing boarding passes at the front desk and/or the computer area was an adventure not recommended for the weak of heart
• puzzled staff was trying hard (and not-so-successfully) to cover bases at breakfast
• a waitress serving a mere four tables for dinner at the bar was completely flummoxed; some guests were ignored, dishes were served to the wrong tables (resulting in cold pasta, which they kindly reheated), and drinks never arrived; however, it should be noted that on a different evening, the bartender provided fabulous service, working both the bar and the dining area with ease; in fact, we were hugely grateful when this bartender appeared at the door to our room late that evening with an iPhone that we had left behind.
Granted, all of these issues can be overcome with training and, hopefully, are resolved by now.
The buffet breakfast at Colonos consisted of basic fare with abundant carbo-loaded options. The food spread layout could be improved to enhance circulation. The staff (likely under training) seemed to lack a consistent system to operate and, as a consequence, was routinely running around “putting out fires” often caused by complaints about running out of expected staples.
Oddly enough, the Colonos breakfast area gets reinvented every evening as Demetrio Grill and Wine, the main hotel restaurant. We did not find this place welcoming (it feels bland and rather “cold”) and so opted for the first floor bar, the Lobby Lounge twice, the best option for a comfortable and tasty dinner.
• The chatty elevator seemed to have a mind of its own
• The terrace pool with the Tropicalia cocktail bar is a well-designed space where classy cabanas provided welcome shelter from the hot Misiones sun. The only dissonant note (pun intended) was the inevitable music occasionally blasting through unnecessarily loud speakers.
Despite the service glitches, the hotel is a good value. It’s maybe 3 stars on its own accord, but we’re giving it 4 stars considering how it compares to other alternatives in the area in terms of price-point, location, amenities, and the fact that it is still quite new.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grand Crucero iguazu Hotel is situated in one of the prime locations of the destination, just a few meters away from the most important shopping centers, main attractions and recreational areas. We offer warmth, comfort and the best service to the travellers, so they can enjoy a surpassing stay at the Land of the Falls. Grand Crucero Iguazu Hotel is capable of accommodating over 220 passengers. Its 77 rooms and 4 suites are wide, comfortable and fully equipped with air conditioning and heating, LCD TV, minibar, IDD/NDD, Wi-fi internet, safe-deposit box, laundry service and room service. The Hotel also has two restaurants, lobby bar, capacious lounges and open spaces for events and conventions, swimming pool, pool bar, solarium, gym and its own tour agency to help you organize your itinerary and excursions. ... more less
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