The hostel is located in a historic neighborhood Getsemani, on the touristy Calle Media Luna. It is only five minutes’ walk to the “walled city”. There are many bars and restaurants within few blocks.
This hostal, more like a hotel that a hostal, is located in tastefully restored colonial building. It features two courtyards between two floors of hotel rooms. The main courtyard provides plenty of seating and shade and is perfect for relaxing after long walk in the hot historic city. There is also a small café located at the entrance to the hostal. It serves nice shakes.
This is a review of my third stay in Baluarte, during my second visit to Cartagena. I was staying in this hotel twice before in May and June the previous year. My first two visits and this last visit to this hotel were two quite different experiences. This time I arrived to Cartagena without reservation and at the end of high season. It was a bit hard to find accommodation. All accommodations in the neighborhood I visited were fully occupied and surprisingly much more expensive than they were just six months ago and more expensive then I would expect them to be in high season. I recommend making reservation if visiting during high season.
On this visit, my room (109) was located on the main floor with its door and a window opening onto the main courtyard. It was quite small for the double occupancy intended for. The door into the bathroom was very small and a larger person would have problem getting in. The room had a bed, nightstand, closet, TV and a ceiling fan. The fan was broken as it only had two high speeds (speed 1 & 2 were the same). This made it difficult to sleep with the fan on as it was too strong and noisy (even on the low speed). The room was clean. The linen and pillows were of good quality and clean as well. The bed mattress was a bit saggy. This room is also located directly on the bottom of a staircase. It was a bit noisy at times and the light in the staircase was illuminating my room at night… (But the staff kept on turning the light off after my request). Overall it was a bit disappointing experience this time.
My two rooms during my first two visits were on second floor opening onto the small courtyard in the back. I was very happy back then with those rooms and found nothing that I didn’t like. They were also much nicer than room 109 on the main floor. Back then, I also paid 60% less for a single occupancy room. They were bargain.
The entire premises were very clean and nicely decorated. Wi-Fi close to the main courtyard was strong. The staff was very friendly and hospitable.
Even though Baluarte was very good value on my first visit, this time room 109 was not.
I can still highly recommend Hostal Baluarte, provided that you avoid rooms on the main floor facing the nice courtyard (rooms 110, 111 and specifically room 109).
I am rating Baluarte only 3/5 stars for my last visit, but I would rate it 5/5 stars for my first two visits. Your experience will depend on what room you will have. If you have the chance, ask to see more rooms before you check in.
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- Also Known As:
- Hostal Baluarte Hotel Cartagena