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“Favorite place in Colombia” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel

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Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel
2.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Troncal Del Caribe Km 34 | (3km on the Main Road From Entrance of Park), Tayrona National Park, Colombia   |  
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
Copenhagen, Denmark
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Favorite place in Colombia”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

My husband and I stayed for a week at Villa Maria, my favorite place in Colombia! It was here that we met the nicest people, the nicest dogs and had the nicest room. We want to thank Villa Maria for making our holiday so good! We enjoyed to stay in the quiet place, with hammocks and a little pool, close to Tayrona (where we went twice) and also close to other walking routes. There are only 4 rooms in Villa Maria and it gives the place a special atmosphere because you get close to the people that are staying there at the same time as you. Luckily for us the other couples that we met were very nice. We walked together and had some good talks in the evenings. The meals that are served are traditional food (which I like) but the the amount of food is too small especially for men. We would prefer to pay a little more and get larger portions. Close to Villa Maria you will find some small shops where you can buy snacks - so you don't have to be hungry. We wish all the best for Villa Maria!!!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 30, 2013
Well we have one thing in common as this too is my favorite place in Colombia. I can't describe it well enough to guests as it makes their stay so great! The feedback from guests and new demand is so great we have been limiting it to direct booking only and we ask please reserve well in advance. I think everyone should enjoy this little corner of paradise.
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138 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (33)
Date | Rating
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  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Kerhonkson, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2013

My friend and I spent 3 nights in this deluxe retreat above Tayrona Park. We loved every minute of it. When we climbed to the top of the staircase to see our accommodations we were amazed by the sparkling pool, the house overlooking the jungle and the beach, and the lovely dining room where we were doted on by our courteous caretakers. It was a ten minute walk to the deserted beach through a jungle of banana, avocado, orange, and lime trees. Being a dog lover I was thrilled to meet the two bull mastiffs that watch over the grounds. They are big enough to keep unwanted intruders off the property but all they really want to do is snuggle up against you and get as much attention as you are willing to lavish on them. The price is very reasonable and I will miss this tropical paradise all winter long.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 30, 2013
Thanks for the great review and kind words. We have really been expanding the farm and it now supplies all our hotels their daily fruits and eggs! Remember when you return we have packages with the hotels in Santa Marta only available through the hotel.
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Los Angeles, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2013

I spent a week in Colombia with my family, starting out in Santa Marta, and finally finishing up my trip here at Villa Maria. It was the absolute best place to spend our last night.

My husband had decided to surprise me and my kids (Emma, age 6 & Jake, age 8) with a last minute trip to Colombia before the kids went back to school. My husband travels the world for business often, so it was nice that he decided to bring us along this time!

Santa Marta was nice, but coming out to the jungle was definitely the family favorite. We stayed at Casa de Leda when we were in Santa Marta, and after a few days, my kids started getting bored with the city and wanted some adventure. Jacob, one of the owners, suggested we go to Villa Maria. Due to some work commitments with my husband, we weren't able to go until the last night, but even one day at that wonderful jungle oasis was enough for us.

The hotel arranged for us to take a car to the jungle, and after a relatively short car ride (Having two kids under ten years old in the car definitely makes it seem longer. You guys know how it can be.) we were there!

Here is my breakdown of this hotel-

PROS:
Beautiful views no matter where you go. From the second we pulled up, we were surrounded by nature. The main house is surrounded by beautiful trees and flowers. It is absolutely breathtaking. Then you walk up to the guest rooms and see the endless jungle on one side and the ocean on another.

The staff is fantastic. Rosemberg is especially great. He helped us with all of our bags, chopped open a coconut for us to eat right away, helped my son climb a tree, and later helped us find our way down to the beach. He was very helpful and nice.

I loved how the staff cooks every meal for you. The food was delicious, and it was nice to eat something that felt home-cooked after a week of eating mainly at restaurants. They even catered to my vegetarian diet!

The beach is the most serene place on this planet. We walked through the jungle for less than ten minutes (something my 6-year-old really enjoyed because she said she felt like Mowgli from The Jungle Book) and then arrived at the beautiful beach. The water was so clear and clean, and there were no tourists there. It was heaven. I didn't have to worry about my kids stepping on any broken glass or swimming in any dirty water.

The pool is beautiful and calm with fun hammocks to lounge in.

The room was lovely. We all stayed in room two very comfortably. After a long day adventuring, my kids fell right asleep very early, and my husband sat outside and enjoyed the views as the sun was setting. It was very romantic, and I couldn't have asked for anything better.


CONS:
Mosquitos. Bring bug spray.

Besides that though, no complaints. This was such an amazing trip, and my family is already trying to plan our next trip back there.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 18, 2013
Thank you for the great review and also the review of Casa de Leda. i am just so happy that Jacob was able to convince you to visit Villa Maria. It really is too special to not enjoy. We hope you can return soon.
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New York City, New York
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2013

This is the perfect spot to come back to after a long day hiking into Tayrona Park. Its a Jungle paradise, and you really feel like you are in another world, with the lush green scenery surrounding you, and the beautiful mountains and sea in the distance. The staff is incredibly warm and welcoming, and seems happy to please, but also to have company. Rosemberg, the leader of the villa, is in charge of everything. he makes you feel welcome and safe, even if you speak minimal Spanish. (special note: the staff speaks no english so you will definitely benefit from knowing some basics, at the very least. you should also plan/hope to befriend other guests who hopefully speak Spanish....! that helped us out tremendously!). its an intimate environment, with only 4 rooms, so you will most likely befriend all of the other guests at meal time, or around the pool. this proved to be very special for us, as we really clicked well w the other guests, and ended up hiking into Tayrona together. Rooms 3 and 4, in the new building on top of the hill are the best. 360 degree views around the property, and off to the sea and the mountains. they have AC, a large, comfy bed and bug nets around the beds. also, this should be obvious and expected, but there are bugs! prepare to see creatures of all kinds, around the grounds, possibly in your room, and definitely flying in to join you at dinner...! this is not meant as a criticism...its the jungle...its raw and real, but the rooms are definitely comfortable, and a great escape. we are from New York City, so were not used to some of the creatures, but it just added some excitement to our experience. this would be encountered anywhere in the area, and i'm sure Villa Maria is the nicest, most refined spot to stay in the area. the meals were prepared fresh in the villa's kitchen. they asked you what you want for every meal, and while the choices are pretty basic and limited, they are always tasty and fresh. the fresh juices were incredible. the pool is clean, and comfortable, and great to spend a day at after a long day in Tayrona. the beach is a 10 min walk away, and was the best surprise for us as it was gorgeous, and fairly deserted, except for a small number of locals who live right there, and they play joyously in the water, and then go out fishing in the evening. on the "trail" from the Villa to the beach you walk past all of the fruit trees that grow all of the fruit you will be eating. pineapple, avocados, mangos, papaya, and more...! thanks Villa Maria for an unforgettable experience!!

Room Tip: rooms 3 & 4, in the new building on top of the hill, w 360 degree views...#3 is the top floor an...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 18, 2013
Thank you for the great review and coming from NYC you really see what I try to communicate to others. I myself am from Philadelphia and feel that anone passing through Santa Marta must visit Villa Maria or their trip is not complete. Prior to us there really was nothing with any quality accomadations which someone can enjoy this area. Now we did this at low prices to add to amenity of Casa de Isabella and Casa de Leda. It is taking off as people are discovering us. We are at point where we have to ask people to try to book well in advance as we only have 4 rooms and it is more exclusive.
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New York
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2013 via mobile

Staying at Villa Maria is a relaxing escape. You can hear the ocean in your bed, get to an incredible deserted beach in 10 minutes, and nap in the hammocks all over the property. Room 2 was beautiful, and I appreciated the L'Occitane bath products. The staff was wonderful, and Rosenberg in particular took great care of us! The food was lovingly prepared, but my sole complaint is that if you stay for more than a couple days, it might become a bit repetitive.

Villa Maria is rustic, but therein lies its charm. I loved how far away everything felt, but at the same time Tayrona and la Quebrada Valencia are quick bus rides away. This is a place to get away, get off the beaten path, and relax.

Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 18, 2013
Thanks for this great review. You appear to have enjoyed all the nuiances of the property. I especailly like to beach myself and have the local fisherman prepare me some of the catch of the day while the sounds of the ocean beat in the background. I love this place:)
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Schweiz
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2013

We had a wonderful room (No. 3) with a fantastic 360 degree view, including on the sea. Villa Maria is just five minutes by bus from the entrance to the national park, much more convenient than the one hour drive from Santa Marta. It is located in the middle of a beautiful garden, growing the fruits you will have for breakfast. There is a small pool and hammocks everywhere and just a few minutes walk down to a lonely beach. Breakfast was fantastic, dinner also very good local food at a very reasonable price, although it could benefit from some more variability for people staying longer than just a night or two.

Staff was fantastic, very friendly and always helpful. You will benefit from speaking at least some basic Spanish.

Overall, we highly recommend Villa Maria over any hotel in Santa Marta.

Room Tip: Room 3 (second building, upper floor)
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, September 18, 2013
Thank you for this great review. We have been really working hard to get the word out about this special place. No where can someone find this experience at this price point!

We hope you return soon.
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Orlando, Florida
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2013

It was a really nice place tranquil a really good place to relax and prop your feet up after a long day in Tayrona park. Lot's of stairs so if you have a problem with stairs this is not your place! Staff is very friendly and helpful. If your going to stay here I recommend you ask for room 3 or 4 the view is spectacular. However, we only stayed one night because 3 and 4 were booked up. So we were in room number one with no TV and no radio. Also room one's front door was like a barn door there was no lock to lock it when you left your room and the cracks in the door were big enough you could stick your fingers between the cracks. There online web site says you can get desert for an extra 5 mil cop but they told us they didn't have desert. I would recommend bringing your own snacks as the meals served here are rather small both my wife and I and some other vacationers we sat with at dinner all felt hungry still after we ate. If you are looking for a relaxing place o stay in Parque Tayrona That's only a 15 min walk from the ocean this is the place!!!!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brian_sutcliffe, Owner at Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel, responded to this review, August 29, 2013
Thank you for your review an I would like to poiint out a couple of your issues.
First we have never advertised "Free dessert" anywhere on any web site? This is odd and maybe you have it confused with another location as it never has even occurred to me to make such an offer.

Second this is the first complaint of meal sizes. I have only heard wonderful feedback about the meals and as a matter of fact because of transport and cost we have now discovered we have been losing money on these extras we are offering. I will investgate more with other guests but this is definately the first I have heard of such a thing.

Third the walk to the beach is 10 minutes via the path. There are a lot of stairs as we chose to build up on the side of the hills for the views and alleviate bug issues. Room number 1 is the most basic room and is priced as such at the lowest rate which is also much lower than anything comparable in the area.
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Additional Information about Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel

Address: Troncal Del Caribe Km 34 | (3km on the Main Road From Entrance of Park), Tayrona National Park, Colombia
Phone Number:
Location: Colombia > Magdalena Department > Santa Marta District > Tayrona National Park
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Tayrona National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Villa Maria Tayrona - a Kali Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Villa Maria combines natural beauty with the comfort of a luxurious resort and the intimacy of your personal country retreat. Surrounded by lush jungle overlooking the ocean, you relax in the shade next to your private swimming pool. Our staff will give you the best welcoming. As you walk the 5 minutes path on your way to the virgin, white sand beach, you will pick avocados, papayas, and bananas right off the tree. Attended by a 24-hour staff, Villa Maria provides daily cleaning, free breakfast, air conditioning, meals upon request, and of course, lots of fresh air. Just 45 minutes from the Old City of Santa Marta, you can expect the same superior quality of amenities and personal service as at all Kali hotels. At Villa Maria, you choose your own agenda. With our on-site staff, all of your needs will be anticipated and met. Drink juice directly from coconuts harvested 10 feet away, or eat fresh fish caught just in front of the local beach. Located 3 kilometres from the entrance to Tayrona National Park, the Villa keeps you close to the park's legendary beaches while giving you the privacy of your own home. Furthermore Villa Maria is the only hotel in the area offering hot water and a/c in the rooms. Local attractions of Quebrada Valencia, the trek to La Ciudad Perdida, and Orinoco can be reached with ease. Our network of hiking trails gives you the authentic sense of exploration felt by the area's first pioneers. Surfing, sunbathing, swimming in waterfalls, or simply walking the grounds will make you cherish every moment you spend at this slice of paradise. At the end of the day, satisfy all of your senses with a comfortable bed and the iconic aroma of the Ylang-Ylang flower, made famous by Chanel No. 5, growing on our gardens. ... more   less 
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