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“Quaint, but sewer smell” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Cuenca Hotel

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Cuenca Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Borrero 10-69 Entre Lamar y Gran Colombia, Cuenca, Ecuador   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #29 of 53 Hotels in Cuenca
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Quaint, but sewer smell”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2009

Oddly, our family stayed in the same room as the other reviewer, 304. The bathrooms seemed to vent into the master bedroom and so the smell became overwhelming in the evening. At night I slept with Vicks vapor rub under my nose to drown out some smell.

We stayed there for one week and the smell never went away. The hotel was full. In the morning, because there was no toilet/shower usage, there would be no smell, but by 0830 to 0900 it would be in full swing. When we returned at 5:00 p.m. the smell would be slight but increase throughout the night. I finally took a towel, wetted it and placed it over the bathtub drain and the sink drain. I don't know if it helped.

Other than that the hotel has seen better days, but is well looked after. The staff is hard-working and helpful. Our shower door was broken so it only had one sliding door. The open half splashed water around the bathroom. Traffic noise was loud and we wore earplugs, but it is to be expected being downtown.

The people and food were the best parts.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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78 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Sugar Land, TX
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
1,270 helpful votes 1,270 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2007

The Hotel Cuenca is a 3-story hotel in the middle of downtown. My stay, arranged by my Ecuadorian fiancee, was for the 4 nights of June 19-22, 2007.

The hotel's entrance is up a couple of steps and through double glass doors. Check-in was very smooth (and the staffer did not ask for my credit card). The room key (a real one) was attached to a wooden turnip-shaped ball, making it hard to lose yet interesting to keep in one's pocket.

The hotel's lobby is spotless ("gleaming"). An around-the-clock coffee station is just beyond the front desk, and then a public computer amidst a comfortable sitting-area, with a fine restaurant beyond that.

Although the hotel has no elevator, the stairway is carpeted and well-lit. The bellman on duty will eagerly and energetically carry your luggage up/downstairs for you. The carpeted upper floors have central sitting-areas, which consist of new, plush furniture, lush potted plants, and classy wall and free-standing artwork. The stairway area is open and extends from the lobby level to a skylight above the 3rd floor. The skylight enables guests to see if it is raining before they venture outside.

Our room (#304) contained two full beds, a desk with chair, a very large stereo system, a nightstand with lamp, another chair, a TV (cable with remote), and tasteful wall artwork. The bathroom, up one step from the bedroom, had generous shelf and hanging-clothes space. The sink had enough counter area on which to spread toiletries. The large shower had a sliding glass door and a basket of towels set at the far end. A wicker basket of extra "Hotel Cuenca" soaps and shampoos was provided.

The only "negative" was that the water pressure in the shower was rather weak, and the water took awhile to heat up on a couple of mornings. The staff's explanation was that this was because so many guests were using the water simultaneously.

Both bathroom and bedroom were gleamingly spotless, and unused electrical outlets were reachable in each. There were no climate-controls; unlike the rest of Ecuador, where air conditioning is a necessity for foreigners unused to the heat, climate-control does not seem needed in Cuenca -- the city is in the mountains, and the year-round temperature generally ranges from 50 to 65 degrees F.

The mattresses were firm, the pillows were reasonably plush, and all linens (including the bedspread and the window curtains) were exceptionally clean.

The room was quiet, with these exceptions: [1] When people in the first-floor restaurant or the lobby spoke too loudly, the sound carried; and [2] from approximately 2:30 to 4 p.m. daily, the staff performed cleaning (sweeping around the edges of the lobby carpet with brooms!) and minor repairs (brief hammering). Neither the room nor the lobby floors creaked, and no room doors squeaked -- a plus anywhere.

The housekeeping was impeccable, and as thorough as it could be without becoming invasive or disruptive. The hotel's overall cleanliness was further evidenced when I saw the maids in the stairwells... using cloths to clean the fronts of the pictures on the walls. Holy mackerel!

Overall staff responsiveness was outstanding, even according to Ecuador's premier standards. Every request or question that we had was handled immediately and thoroughly.

After approximately midnight, the front hotel doors are barred, and a night watchman/bellman/clerk keeps his eye out for guests who want to come in or go out. He patrolled the entire lobby floor constantly and courteously kept his voice down in order to avoid disturbing sleepers above.

The hotel's restaurant is elegant, with fine furniture and cloth napkins. No menu item exceeded $8. My fiancee and I were sorry that the first time we dined there was on our last day.

Checkout consisted of my providing my Visa card and passport number; the bill came to the promised $35 per night. The hotel had a bilingual "guest satisfaction" survey in the room; I filled it out with highly positive remarks.

Other: Ecuador uses the U.S. dollar and U.S. electrical current. Cuenca is Ecuador's 3rd-largest city, and it seems very safe. Check first to learn whether hotels or merchants accept credit cards, and how steep the surcharge will be, if there is one. Even if a place accepts (for example) Visa cards, it may not accept YOUR Visa card (something about "international" cards); accordingly, when you pack for Ecuador, take double the cash that you think you'll need, and then take even more than that.

Summary: The Hotel Cuenca's rooms are above-average to excellent, and the cleanliness, restaurant, and service are outstanding. The hotel is downtown near everything. You get all of this for $35 per night. I give the Hotel Cuenca my unqualified endorsement, and I recommend it to you unconditionally.

  • Liked — The value for the cleanliness & service received in a perfect location.
  • Disliked — Weak water pressure in the shower.
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cuenca Hotel

Address: Borrero 10-69 Entre Lamar y Gran Colombia, Cuenca, Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Azuay Province > Cuenca
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 53 Hotels in Cuenca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Cuenca Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
To enjoy this city steeped in history, a hotel that is part of it ... it tells us that since its construction in 1950, was keeping its thick walls of adobe and its high ceilings and large, the warmth of the earth Cuenca. We are located in the heart of Cuenca, just two blocks from Central Park, along the entire banking, commerce, shops and craft markets, a hotel with history and tradition that captivates with its simplicity, warmth and security. Our services. Cable TV, private bathroom, national and international telephone service, high speed wireless internet, bussiness area, room service (7:00 - 12:00), night parking, tourist information, cafe "The Grazzia" restaurant "Coal" Bar service. ... more   less 
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