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“Could be a lovely hostel...”
Review of Hostal Casa Mara

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Hostal Casa Mara
Ranked #30 of 188 Specialty Lodging in Cartagena
Basel
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Could be a lovely hostel...”
Reviewed March 1, 2013

We went to Casa Mara because of a recommendation and we were absolutely disappointed!
The hostel is a very nice colonial building but it is not maintained at all. The guy at the entrance asked kind of rude if we had a reservation. We did and so we checked in. We did not get any information of anything and were taken to our room. We both were kind of speechless because the room was completely different from what we expected! It looked like in prison! A tiny little window, now space at all and the doors were seethrough! And all that at a cost of 130.000 COP (65US$) without breakfast and the internet was working neither. It doesn't have anything to do with the pictures shown on their homepage.
We went out trying to find another hostel, which we did (Casa Baluarte, only a few steps away was much more nicer and cheaper!). As they were full the first night, we left Casa Mara after one night without problems, because of our reservation for three nights. That was the only positive thing!
If they would take care about their lovely building, it could be a beautiful hostel. It is really a pity that is so run down...

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Janine K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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109 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Sacramento
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed December 30, 2012

I stayed here 3 nights during my visit to beautiful Cartagena. It was walking distance (10 minutes) to the Clock Tower entrance to the old city. The staff was very helpful, the room was comfortable and good-sized, and the price was right. They have a small pool for cooling off in the tropical heat. They do laundry there as well. Breakfast is included, but not on the premises...they give you a voucher for a simple breakfast half a block away. You can also buy tickets at the hotel for boats to Playa Blanca. I definitely recommend this place.

Room Tip: I heard that upstairs rooms were larger, but as a single, it wouldn't matter
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ViajeroCraig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane
Level 4 Contributor
47 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed October 5, 2012

Prices are pretty expensive (most are in cartagena), but we got a discount to stay in a double(usually 60,000 each) for the price of a dorm (45,000 each) - worth asking for a special in off season.

rooms were good and clean with comfortable beds. air con varied in different rooms from icy to a glorified fan. TV did not work in any of the 3 rooms we stayed in. (had to be moved due to work to fix the ceiling)

the pool was nice to splash in, even though the water didnt look very clear.

Room Tip: wifi worked best in rooms on the ground floor. wifi didnt work on top floor and was variable on fir...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DiverHan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed September 29, 2012 via mobile

Stayed here for 4 nights, in 3 different rooms. The foyer is quite nice and has a few different areas to sit. The pool needs a good clean, the water was quite cloudy the whole time we were there.
The website mentions a rooftop small pool that you can also use - this was not so, it is a small spa that was empty and didn't look like it had been used
in awhile.
Overall the rooms are all dated and need general repairs - powerpoints hanging out of walls - missing ceilings - showerheads broken - broken lamps - rattley old a/c (but they do work!)
If the rooms were a bit cheaper I wouldn't bother mentioning the repairs required - but at least you know what to expect.
The rooms are fairly spacious, beds were fine and there was the usual cold water only showers as you seem to get everywhere on the coast. Location was good.

Oh and the wifi didn't work in the rooms and timed out all the time when it did work - was quite annoying.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tmayb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed July 23, 2012

I thought this place was perfect for the price-it is popular so you definitely want to book ahead. The rooms are quite and set around a courtyard with a pool and plenty of places to sit around and read. The owners were wonderful and easy going. The bed was comfortable and the shower had good water pressure. The location was central for everywhere I wanted to visit. I will stay here again next time.

Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank soulrebel23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
20 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed May 28, 2012

We stayed for 3 nights at Casa Mara in May 2012. After reading reviews and hearing how hot it was in Cartagena, we chose Casa Mara because there was a a quiet, shaded courtyard with a small pool and the rooms had a/c. It turned out to be a good choice. We always felt safe here, as the front gate is always locked.

Diana was a great host and was able to book day trips (i.e. Volcan Totumo) and transport onto our next destination. Who needs hot water when it is so hot outside? Not me. I loved our cool shower after a day of sightseeing. The room was also nice and quiet and WiFi was provided. It was also a quick walk from Getsemani into the historical Centro area of Cartagena.

Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
2 Thank happytravels604
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Australia
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2012

The rooms are fine, except that there is no hot water, which makes showering a challenge for some, although the hot weather made it easier to bear. Air conditioning very effective and there's a small pool, There's also a small rooftop area where you can sit at night but you have to take your own drinks etc., as there's no food or drink service at the hotel. Breakfast was included but you get a voucher to take to a cafe around the corner. Free wifi plus a PC available. Overall good value for money.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank RoxleyAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hostal Casa Mara

Property: Hostal Casa Mara
Address: Calle del Espiritu Santo #29-139 | Getsemani, Cartagena, Colombia
Location: Colombia > Bolivar Department > Cartagena District > Cartagena
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #30 of 188 Specialty Lodging in Cartagena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hostal Casa Mara 2.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Each of the 10 rooms in this hotel have all the comforts to make you feel at home. Some of the features you'll enjoy are internet access , cable TV, shower. The hotel boasts Wi - Fi in public areas , laundry service / dry cleaning, room service. Guests seeking exercise or leisure will be pleased to find garden at the hotel. Well located , a dedicated staff and quality services make this hotel a favorite among viajeros.Los guests can enjoy peace and tranquility in the pool Casa Mara offers all its guests. Guests can also relax in the hot tub and admire the charm of this beautiful home. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hostal Casamara Hotel Cartagena

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