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“Elegance in the Heart of Antigua”

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The San Rafael Hotel
Ranked #1 of 76 Hotels in Antigua
Certificate of Excellence
Charleston, South Carolina
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Elegance in the Heart of Antigua”
Reviewed October 26, 2013

My husband and I have visited some of the most beautiful places in the world---and this gem of a hotel in Antigua would easily make our top 5 list...
As I write this review we are sipping wine in a candlelit courtyard to the sounds of the fountain---did I say a marble and tile fountain? The flawless craftsmanship of the woodwork is stunning. This boutique hotel was newly renovated and the artwork alone is worth staying here. Our room was refreshed daily with roses, calla lilies...and almond scented towels... Chocolates left each eve while we were out. The staff were perfectly attentive ... Not fawning; they noticed our needs and delivered seamlessly: a nut bowl was brought when they noticed our bag of local peanuts... Wine glasses left when they saw our recently purchased bottle--- they were spot on every time.

This review may sound over the moon, but trust me--- you will want to linger here. So come to San Rafael and while you are here, enjoy Antigua!

Room Tip: All fantastic
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Angela R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotel S, Gerente at The San Rafael Hotel, responded to this review, November 24, 2013
Thank you very much for such a nice Hotel review, Our Motto is to make the guests feel like home, we are so glad you had a good time, and we hope to have you again as our guest in a near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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275 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (68)
Date | Rating
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English first
Ambergris Caye, Belize
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 12, 2013

I am so glad The San Rafael was our gate to Antigua. A beauty within a beauty.
The architectural design is a tasteful mix of colonial and contemporary, beautified
by carefully planned details. The spacious rooms are set around a lovely garden
with trees, flowers, and a fountain. The surrounding corridor has comfortable lounge areas to relax, feel blessed, have your breakfast there or just enjoy the delicious coffee they serve. Breakfast is included and consists of different menus to choose from, and all are so good ! Very fresh ingredients. We chose a room with two super comfortable beds: well balanced pillows, some soft some not much and soft luxury bed linens. Our room was tidy and thoroughly clean every day. The bathoom, simply amazing ! As per our request, we were welcomed at night by the warmth of a fire on the chimney as part of the turndown ritual. A lot more can be said about this authentic boutique resort, but as any traveler knows, a resort without a soul has no value at all, no matter how amazing the setting can be. The San Rafael has a soul: their staff. All were friendly in a genuine natural way, beyond the expected trained courtesy. When you meet Julia, the Manager, you will understand why.

Room Tip: We chose the junior suite called "Santa.Catalina" with 2 double beds.It was just perfect.
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Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Monica G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotel S, Manager at The San Rafael Hotel, responded to this review, October 23, 2013
Thank you very much for posting your review, our motto is to make our guest feel like home.
It was a pleasure to meet and we all hope to have you as our guest again.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Haven, Connecticut
Level Contributor
59 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2013

It's a small, boutique hotel located one minute walk from El Arco and 5 minutes from El Parque Central. The hotel feels like an impressive, upscale home with superb service and facilities. The courtyard is spacious and beautifully arranged with multiple seating areas overlooking the greenery. The furnishings and artwork makes it feel like home. An expansive living room is a great space to socialize with other guests or to enjoy your complementary breakfast. There are few choices for breakfast but I got hooked on the "traditional breakfast" with scrambled eggs, fresh fruit (with a wedge of lime and a dash of salt), black beans, salsa, and fried plantans. Fresh squeezed OJ and coffee to complete the experience.
Each room in the hotel has a different theme and offers super comfortable beds and luxurious bathrooms. Some rooms have large living areas making the space feel like a large suite. The place is serene with background sounds of shimmering water features and fountains. The hotel offers complimentary WiFi, umbrellas (really needed!). One of the best hotels i ever stayed.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank wojtekwb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotel S, Gerente at The San Rafael Hotel, responded to this review, November 24, 2013
Although we are a little late responding, we want to thank you for your hotel review, we remember your good humor and enthusiasm, and we are glad you have had a good time at the hotel.

Sincerely
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
58 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed September 22, 2013

Definitely recommend this hotel. It was opened at the beginning of 2013, so everything's brand new. It's a tastefully designed and decorated hotel, with a mix between Guatemalan colonial and Italian details. The staff is very friendly and very helpful. Breakfast was excellent. One of the most important points, it is so centrally located that you couldn't be in a better location. Rooms do not have air conditioning and the window set up is such that you are not likely to leave windows open towards the central courtyard since you'll get the light and noises coming in. However, requesting a fan or lighter bed blankets would be a good solution.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Catherine R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed September 3, 2013

I stayed here for a night on a business trip and I was amazed by the quality of the staff and accommodations. The experience ranks easily among the best I've ever had at a hotel. Rooms are tasteful and comfortable and the staff is attentive and friendly. I only stayed one night but I hope to return soon. It is the first place I would recommend for travelers to Antigua.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank j w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guatemala City, Guatemala
Level Contributor
15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed August 16, 2013

We found this small boutique hotel by chance about 3 month ago, and have stayed there already twice for a full weekend. It has only been finished beginning 2013, after a two years restoration of an antique building, keeping the original substance. It's centric location is ideal to explore "La Antigua Guatemala" by day and night! Each room is individually decorated with many fine details, from furnitures to rugs, antique and contemporary pieces of art and a cozy fireplace... Last not least, the friendly staff contributed vastly to these perfect weekends.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sepp F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Haven
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2013

This is truly one of the most beautiful little hotels I have stayed at anywhere in the world. The owners' tasteful renovation is stunning, peaceful and luxurious. Each of the seven rooms is decorated differently, with sumptuous linens, vast closet space, oriental rugs, modern art, fresh flowers and divine bathroom facilities. The staff is knowledgeable, friendly and competent. The interior courtyard, with its fountains, surrounding conversation areas, artwork and evening candles, makes you loathe to leave the hotel at all, but just outside the door you are in an ideal location, just a few steps from the sights, restaurants and shopping, yet on a quiet street. I felt like we were staying in a private European villa, eating a sumptuous breakfast among friends of great wealth. We are already planning a return trip and bringing friends.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ctatty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotel S, Manager at The San Rafael Hotel, responded to this review, October 23, 2013
Thank you very much for your nice comments, they motivate us to keep improving.

we are looking forward to have you at the hotel again and it was a pleasure to meet you.

We all still remember your beautiful grandkids.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The San Rafael Hotel

Property: The San Rafael Hotel
Address: 2da Calle Poniente No. 7, Antigua 03001, Guatemala
Phone Number:
Location: Guatemala > Sacatepequez Department > Antigua
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 76 Hotels in Antigua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The San Rafael Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The San Rafael, which opens following a three-year restoration, incorporates the remains of an early structure significantly altered in the nineteenth century. The recent restoration preserves the form of a grand, traditional colonial home with its brick, stone and stucco construction; two courtyards; antique tile roofs; and three water features (including a dramatic wall fountain). Besides the furnished patio where one can enjoy a leisurely breakfast while gazing over the garden, guests will appreciate the elegant and lofty sitting and dining room, the perfect space in which to sip a glass of wine, sit before a roaring fire, or catch up on emails and correspondence. Entering through the gates of the San Rafael, visitors enjoy a sweeping view of the first courtyard with its two fountains and richly varied plantings: Italian cypresses, ficus trees, and the colorful blossoms of native plants. The hotel office and reception are conveniently located off the entry vestibule, where newly arriving guests will be greeted with a welcome beverage, and hotel residents may seek advice on touring the city, securing reservations at Antigua's finest restaurants, or making arrangements for a private excursion. Breakfast is a special occasion here, guests enjoying it while seated around the courtyard or in the dining room. For those fond of coffee or tea upon awakening, and before sitting down to breakfast, complimentary self-serve beverages are available in the courtyard each morning. The breakfast menu includes traditional offerings as well as a rotating array of special dishes. Breakfast is served between the hours of 7:00am and 10:30am weekdays, 11:00am weekends. ... more   less 
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