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“My Kind of Inca Palace” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Belmond Sanctuary Lodge

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Belmond Sanctuary Lodge
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Carretera Hiram Bingham s/n, Machu Picchu 5184, Peru   |  
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Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Machu Picchu
Ridgefield, Connecticut
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
“My Kind of Inca Palace”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

I first stayed here in 1973 and then again in 2005. What an experience. It is not so much the hotel. The rooms are nice. The food is good. This location is, well, unbeatable. Why stay at this hotel? By 3 PM when all the tourist leave Machu Picchu, you will understand. MP is leterally empty. The tourists have gone for the day. No more crowds and no more lines. Basically, it is just you and the ruins. Eat diner. Sleep and most of all, get a wake up call for 5:30 AM. Early morning exploring the ruins by yourself and maybe catching a sunrise can be a spiritual experience. Spend a few hours alone. Eat breakfast. And return to the ruins until the tourists arrive. The hotel and Machu Picchu are the experiences of a lifetime.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oeperu, Director General at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, responded to this review, March 19, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your comments which will aid us in constant improvement and upkeeping of our level of service.

We remain at your service.

Sincerely,

Marc Yeterian
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Ellicott City, Maryland
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

There are some valid comments from other reviewers about the rooms and the facilities not really being 5 star quality (they are not bad, though), but for me it was all about maximizing my limited time at Machu Picchu. We bought the Hiram Bingham train package, so we arrived to the hotel at about 2pm, checked in, and immediately were sent on our guided tour with 1 other couple. At first, I thought this was a pretty stupid plan, because we had a lot more time the next day to have a tour, so why would they schedule one when we only had a few hours of daylight left. Boy was i wrong, this is exactly the right way to do it. We had our tour, got the lay of the land, and were able to spend the next day exploring on our own. The next day, we entered the park to watch the sunrise (the park opens at 6am, which is actually a little late, it would be nicer if it opened at 5:30 am so you could get to a spot and really watch the sun rise), explored the site on our own, and were able to return to the hotel and have breakfast. After breakfast, we took the walk to Intipunku, which was just the right amount of strenuousness for us. We returned to the hotel, had a late lunch and took a shower in the day room and relaxed a bit before we trained back to Cusco. All in all, I can't think of a better way for us to have experienced Machu Picchu.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 14, 2012

After staying in other Orient Express we stayed to the Hotel for two days. The location of the hotel is just perfect no need to take the bus to go to Machu Picchu (the road to go there is horrible). The food of the restaurant was just excellent. Service was pretty good.
Cons: Rooms are not 5* standards. Bathrooms are very small (no bathtub) and rooms in the morning are pretty noisy due to buses coming up to Machu Picchu.
I would easily say that this hotel is the best around Machu Picchu due to location, so i would recommend it. But do not have high expectation for the room. For me this hotel is a good hotel but not a Leading Hotel of the World.
Pros: the inclusions with the price of the room

Room Tip: take a room with a terasse you will avoid the noisy road in the morning
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

We stayed here as part of our Tour with Lindblad National Geographic Expeditions and we can't say enough about the hotel and the group we traveled with.

Knowledgeable guides, the accommodations far exceeded what you would expect in the middle of the Andes.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
oeperu, Director General at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, responded to this review, April 8, 2013
Dear Guest,

On behalf of all of us, we would like to thank you for choosing Orient-Express as your destination property and for sharing your comments with the Tripadvisor readers.

All the best,
Marc Yeterian
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
thurso
Top Contributor
147 reviews 147 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
81 helpful votes 81 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

Unfortunately by time i came to book this after deciding what trek to book - it was completely sold out!! So to compensate after my 2 days at MP i had the lunch buffet!! Which suprisingly enough was delicious!! VERY modern solid building - restuarant BIG - obviously to cope with the demand - i was unaware of the buffet before i arrived and then thought it perhaps wouldnt be up to much BUT what a spread for $35 - thought it would be in region of $135 - so was very pleasantly surprised!! I would advise anybody going here to treat yourselves to a fine lunch after your trekking around!! Most enjoyable but then i suppose the do have their reputation to look after!!

The only surprise i had is i couldnt see anything of MP from here??? - although it is right next door to the entrance - think it could be at an angle to it?? I would double check this if staying here for that reason!!

ANyway treat yourselves - you will not be disappointed!!

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
oeperu, Director General at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, responded to this review, November 7, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your comments which will aid us in constant improvement and upkeeping of our level of service.

We remain at your service.

Sincerely,
Marc Yeterian
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012 via mobile

As others have said, this is a very good hotel in a simply stunning location. We were lucky enough t be upgraded to the Presidential Suite having booked for a balcony room. The unique location of the hotel means that theres a significant turnover of guests each day but the staff have this well organised and offer support and flexibility with bag storage and a well provisioned room for those waiting for transport after checkout. The balcony rooms share an area with views of the mountains, though (as our agent had made clear) not Macchu Picchu itself. We arrived at the hotel mid morning after the bus shuttle up from the train station. We'd packed light and immediately went with our guide for a tour of the site. We got back to the hotel for lunch and a little unpacking. Both of lunch services we had in our short stay were unexpectedly slow and were definitely the weakest part of the operation. On both days we had to wait around half an hour for our food to arrive, even when we were first into the dining area as it opened. The lunchtime food was good but not fine dining; it seems to me that as the hotel does so well to support visitors who obviously want to make the most of the historical site in other respects, it's not unreasonable to hope for prompt service at lunchtime, minimising the time need for the lunchtime meal for those who want to be back outside. The unique situation of the hotel delivers its real value as the non-residents leave for the trains back in the afternoon. The historical site becomes far quieter and it's simply a privilege to be there with a few other people, the llamas and one's own thoughts. Back to the hotel where room service delivered (inclusive) drinks more promptly than the lunch service. The suite was, of course, comfortable although the bathrooms were starting to show their age. Wifi was good throughout. Dinner was very good and served at a comfortable pace. The 'all included' billing included wines by the glass, allowing us to try a wide variety of wines with the food.the food quality was very good and the service felt far more comfortable than earlier in the day. Throughout our stay the front desk was consistently friendly and helpful. If you are visiting Machu Picchu, despite the expense, I'd absolutely recommend the Sanctuary Lodge to make the most of what, for many people, will be a once in a lifetime experience.

Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oeperu, Director General at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, responded to this review, November 7, 2012
Dear Guest,

We sincerely appreciate your strong recommendation of the Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge and look forward to welcoming you back soon.

All the best,
Marc Yeterian
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gold Coast
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

Yes, I have read many reviews that have "slammed" this hotel for its high tariffs and dated decor.
I wasn't looking for an opulent resort. What lay beyond the entrance gates only 200m further on was my goal.
Here is why I recommend Sanctuary Lodge as a great stay:
* location, location, location. How can you beat being right there? When we returned from our two hour tour in the middle of the day (bad planning) in a lather, we fell into a cold shower and re-hydrated from the free mini-bar. Other people were lining up in the hot sun for twenty minutes, catching the 25 minute slightly hair -raising bus trip back to Agua Calientes and walking up steep streets to their hotels. By this time, I was refreshed and watching a massive storm raging in the mountaintops from the hotel terrace. Magnificent. You could believe the Inca gods were fighting!
* The service is impeccable. The hotel staff probably ask you too many times if they can help you. We arrived three hours before our room was ready. Nevertheless they gave us coffee and a snack, sat us in a lounge and conducted the registration from there.
* the food is beautiful and, obviously, all part of the deal. Quinoa-crusted chicken for lunch and grilled duck breast with black maize reduction for dinner.
* apart from highly expensive spirits and wines (labelled in blue on the menu), all alcohol is included. My friend does not drink and admonished me for not drinking enough.
* the $50 US massages (one hour) were worth every cent!
* we returned at 6 the next morning to re-enter the ruins before the buses arrived. Waynapicchu (the mountain in all the photographs) was wreathed in mist. The morning light made the rocks glow.
* after a scrumptious breakfast, I sat on the terrace again and watched jewel-coloured hummingbirds sip nectar from feeding stations.
* even after we checked out and had to wait 2 hours for our bus/train connection, hotel staff continued feeding us with coffee and small snacks.
* did I tell you about the Heavenly pillows? Like sleeping on a cloud. Too big to fit in a suitcase. Drats!
Machu Picchu is one of those "magical experiences". Continue the magic and stay "up top". You will remember the experiences for a long time. The bank balance will improve in a month or two!

Room Tip: If you can afford it, book the rooms that look over the grass terrace towards the mountains.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oeperu, Director General at Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, responded to this review, November 14, 2012
Dear Guest,

On behalf of all of us, we would like to thank you for choosing Orient-Express as your destination property and for sharing your comments with the Tripadvisor readers.

All the best,
Marc Yeterian
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Belmond Sanctuary Lodge

Address: Carretera Hiram Bingham s/n, Machu Picchu 5184, Peru
Phone Number:
Location: Peru > Cusco Region > Sacred Valley > Machu Picchu
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Machu Picchu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Belmond Sanctuary Lodge 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge is located right on top of the mountain, a couple of seconds from the Machu Picchu citadel (often referred as the Lost City of the Incas), and enjoys a prime position within the Sanctuary. Enjoy great orchid garden tours, humming bird watching, yoga classes, and taste exquisite dishes whilst relaxing next to one of the world's most famous places. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge By Orient-Express Hotel Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu Sanctuary Hotel
Sanctuary Lodge Machu Picchu

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