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“Lovely property - service lacking - not worth the high price tag”

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Inkaterra La Casona Relais & Chateaux
Ranked #2 of 171 Hotels in Cusco
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 7, 2011

We stayed at La Casona for 3 nights on a 2 1/2 week trip to Peru. We opted to stay here instead of the Monasterio because we liked the idea of a small, intimate boutique hotel. While the property itself was lovely and the rooms charming, we found the service amiss. Some of the examples given below may seem nit picky and trite but at $720 a night, the service should be impeccable.

At most 5 star hotels, there is a distinct management presence. A manager usually will greet guests upon check in or come by during dinner or breakfast to introduce themselves and check on your stay. We never met any sort of manager. The only staff members we encountered was the young woman at the front desk who also served as concierge and general contact person. The only other person we encountered was a man in a long coat with a name tag which simply read "Trainee" who answered the door and walked around looking rather pompous and stuffy. In all fairness, this was Easter week but we never met a manager until we voiced complaints about service and a manager came from her home to talk to us.

The most notable gaff was that we inquired about a tour of the ruins in Cuzco. We were quoted by the concierge/desk clerk what we thought was an outrageous price of $170 for a driver/guide to take us on a 3+ hour tour. She told us she would check and see if she could get someone else for a better rate but she never came back to us with any further information.

The room was very nice with a fireplace and regional decor. The bathroom was modern with 2 separate sink areas but was lacking in the normal amenities you would expect to find in a 5 star hotel, such as cotton balls, Q-tips, emory board, etc. There was a large bathtub but when I got ready to take a bath, I discovered there was no bath salts or bath/shower gel. Each sink had a small soap disk, couple of kleenex wrapped in paper, and shampoo and conditioner in the shower. When we asked about the lack of amenities, we were told by the concierge/desk clerk that "the owners don't like to spend the money on that" and added there was a book next to the bed that says that if you need anything, to ask. We checked the nightstand and there was no such book or notice. We personally were afronted to hear that the owners of Inkaterra want to "save money" when they are charging $720 a night - considerably more than the cost of a room at the Monasterio.

Maid service was hit and miss. When we arrived, we had washcloths in the room but the next time the linens were changed out, no washcloths but we got 6 hand towels. We would call for washcloths and they would be delivered but again the next day, no wash cloths.

While staying at the hotel, I became ill so was frequently in the toilet area which had 2 toilet roll dispensers. At one point, one roll ran out but having the backup dispenser, I just used it instead. After the next cleaning, I found the empty toilet roll holder still in the dispenser. Inexcusable to not replace the roll.

Food in the restaurant was good but service was very slow as we found to be the case in most places in Peru.

It is a shame that owners of such a lovely property are not managing it more closely.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank cavergirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 2, 2011

Beautiful hotel...do not be deceived by the plain-looking exterior. Once inside, this is a little gem (only 11 rooms). The service was exceptional! We were treated like kings. The staff was professional, yet friendly (we especially loved "Hernan"). They gave us pisco sour demonstrations...lit the fireplace...dinner at the hotel was private and delicious (try the pear for dessert). All in all, this was one of the best hotel experiences we have ever had.

Room Tip: 2nd floor rooms are very nice.
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  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank KarlaBestFriend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 17, 2011

We just returned from a 3 night stay at the Inkaterra. This was the final stop in our two week trip to Peru and it made for a great ending!!! This hotel lives up to what everyone else in this forum has said about it. You are treated as a special guest from the moment you arrive until you check out. We also enjoyed the food and the afternoon tea. The bathroom is a treat and I loved the large tub. If you have a chance to stay in this hotel, treat yourself to it. You will not be disappointed!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank NepeanCanteach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2011

Spent 3 days in Cusco at the La Casona and I was truly blown away by how amazing everything was. The hotel is a real hidden gem that is very unassuming from the outside but stunning once you walk in through the doors and into the courtyard. Its onty 11 rooms I believe and I stayed in the plaza suite which was probably the nicest hotel room I've ever had. Maid service 3x daily, heated floors, 2 balconies, hot water bottles and chocolates left after turn down service, they have bubble baths and fires in the fireplace waiting for you at night, tea time every day, and the food is as good or better than high end NYC retaurants. The courtyard setting and the very traditonal and authentic feel make this place great. Its within 1 min walking distance to the main square and very close to a lot of attractions. The high altitude only effected us while walking around after a while and the hotel gave us Coca Tea which really helped. I would go back every year if I could.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank gregrossi22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2011

My husband and I travel extensively with our three kids (23,19,15)
This past November we decided to go to Peru. THE INKA TERRA is a jewel. The hotel doesn't need glamor nor marbel floors, from the moment you arrive and go through those green antique doors you are welcomed as family.
. The staff is honest and takes pride in every detail of their work. The food service is fabulous, there is a menu which features various local dishes including ginnea pig. Which we tried and was roasted to perfection. This hotel is an experience. This hotel is
great.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled with family
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Thank zoraidaallende
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2011

From the airport pick-up ("as a courtesy") through to departure, we enjoyed a very high level of service and comfort at the Inkaterra.

From the outside, the Inkaterra is somewhat 'understated' - no gaudiness or flamboyance here, no flags, no revolving doors - just a discreet entrance takes you into a beautiful courtyard, around which there are 11 suites on two levels. You are not really sure where reception is, as you are met on arrival with a hand towel and greeted by name. The check-in formalities are then completed in your suite. The suites are huge, with underfloor heating. The bathrooms, which comprise a large tub and separate shower units are large and luxurious, including heated towel rails. Oxygen and Wi-Fi are complimentary.

In this 'close to perfect' boutique hotel, we did experience some negatives. I would say these affected no more than 10% of our satisfaction ratings, but none-the-less should be noted for the record. Breakfast staff training needs to be improved - one shouldn't need to ask for butter, for example. The hot water was no more than tepid on two evenings. However the biggest negative was on our final evening. There was an event in the dining room, and we were asked to take dinner in our room. The in-room dining facilities (table, chairs etc) are really insufficient for this purpose. During the dinner service, we were constantly interrupted - I would estimate 8-10 times - by staff either phoning or bearing dockets for signature - in other words, the 'final bill preparation' procedures were in full motion whilst we were trying to enjoy our final dinner. This was not very discreet. We complained. The management did take our complaint seriously, and we were impressed to receive a note of apology and a parting gift (our favourite bottle of wine) as a token on our departure.

Overall, the Inkaterra at Cusco is hard to beat.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Brockles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2011

Our family spent three days at the Inkaterra La Casona in December and found it to be the most wonderful hotel at which we have ever stayed. We have done a great deal of traveling in our day, throughout the US, Europe and Central America and have been fortunate to stay at a number of lovely, high end, phenominal hotels (boutique and resort) along the way -- but that said, none surpass the exceptional accommodations, service, and amenities of the Inkaterra La Casona. From the absolutely gorgeous rooms (the bathroom itself larger than most hotel rooms) with natural woods, stone and marble, to the outstanding service, to amenties ranging from hot water bottles in the beds at night to lit fires in your fireplace upon returning from dinner -- the hotel could not have been more perfect. It was an absolute highlight of our trip.

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled with family
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Thank Ken1128
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Inkaterra La Casona Relais & Chateaux

Address: Plaza Nazarenas 113, Cusco 00000, Peru
Location: Peru > Cusco Region > Cusco
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Cusco
#5 Romantic Hotel in Cusco
Price Range: $414 - $539 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Inkaterra La Casona Relais & Chateaux 4*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
First Relais & Châteaux property in Peru, an exquisite 16th century colonial manor, located just steps away from the picturesque main square. Once occupied by the conquistadors of Peru, it is now an exclusive boutique hotel that has been carefully restored to retain its historical heritage and décor. With suites set around a Spanish courtyard, the manor offers sober elegance without sacrificing authenticity. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Inkaterra La Casona Cusco

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