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“Hidden Gem!!!!”
Review of Karmairi Hotel Spa

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Karmairi Hotel Spa
Ranked #47 of 151 Hotels in Cartagena
Certificate of Excellence
Las Cruces, New Mexico
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Hidden Gem!!!!”
Reviewed April 28, 2014

I cant say enough about this property! We did not stay in the hotel however, we simply purchased the premium day passes. I had contacted the hotel about a month prior to our arrival and every question I had was answered in a timely manner by Leonardo. Then from the moment we arrived to the property we were treated like royalty. The staff was so nice and accommodating. The welcome drink was delicious!!!! And was served to us poolside. The outdoor space was amazing, very tranquil and comfortable. The pool temperature was perfect. We had massages on the beach which we enjoyed very much. Frank was our waiter for the day and he was absolutely incredible! He was so kind and treated us so well. He was very attentive and was quick to respond whenever we called him. While getting our massages Frank placed reserved signs on our chairs which was very nice. Our lunch was delicious and I felt that the portion size was just right. The beach cabanas were wonderful and the beach was not crowed at all so this made for a very enjoyable time. The ample seating outside by the pool and beach was great and was never full or crowded. We felt the day pass was a great value as it included several drinks, lunch, 30min massage, the shuttle, and use of the facilities for the day. We couldn't be happier with our decision to visit this property and plan to come again. Thank you to all the staff who made this an enjoyable day and a special thanks to Frank for the special attention he provided us.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sheila M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Director Mercadeo Online at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, May 12, 2014
Hello,

We are happy that you enjoyed a great time at Karmairi Hotel Spa. Next time we would like you to stay more days and enjoy our rooms and our facilities.

Our Staff is very commited to customer service so we are glad to hear we made this possible for you.

Looking forward to have you here soon.

Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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377 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (38)
Date | Rating
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English first
Alexandria, VA
Level Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2014

First off, I have to say the staffs at this spa hotel are A+ but there is a serious problem that needs to be fixed with the reservation process. It is a joke to find out anything prior to coming with that Instant message feature on their site. Forget it if you don't speak good Spanish except you happen to be served by exceptional staff like Leo, Katie with her beautiful smile and the Bar tender. You will need loads of drinks to deal with frivolous deceptive charges and poor communication. So this is the story, we were not provided the double room we booked because there were no more beds upon arrival, so next day we settle into a room with doubles only to be asked to move again and possibly to another HOTEL due to the hotel overbooking every Saturday (sign of terrible communication and poor operation). The option offered to us was totally unacceptable and downright offensive. It was right behind the reception desk area, breakfast area. It was basically the “reject room” that resembles boys quarters. It was a heavily trafficked area and quite offensive to accept that kind of offer. Thank goodness I was travelling with a female lawyer that understands standing up for one's right. Well we didn't move and as revenge, let's fast forward to "check out". We had deceptive charges almost $600usd additional to our bill and was presented when the hotel thought we would be "drunk and/or tipsy from going out...How in the world do you explain optional "insurance" after the fact, breakfast (which was included), several tips (which we paid along the way etc.) ALL printed for us in SPANISH....Very clever but not with us.. Jesus at the reception desk obviously thought we were timid, female tourists because how in the world would we not catch frivolous charges and then he refused to document and accept the fact that he was collecting $550 dollars in cash from us.... Hotel Karmairi owes us an apology big time and this case continues because I plan to post on every site the swindling tactics of this hotel...

Room Tip: Second floor facing the beach.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Travelbug2011136
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Online-Marketing-Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, April 10, 2014
Hi,

First of all we would like to thank you for your review..... we organized a meeting with the management and all the staff and talked about your review.

Regarding the Invoice in Spanish unfortunatelly we cannot customized the invoice in every language.... for Colombian laws we need to have everything in Spanish.

About the welcome cocktail..... I am afraid we do not charge this... if you carefully check the bill you will see for your self that we did not charge it. However we made changes in the invoice in order not to confuse the guest anymore.

Regarding your room we apologize for the inconvenience, however we made an upgrade for you to a better room in order to take responsibility for our mistake.

We hope you understand us and we hope everything is clear.

Have a nice day

Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Online Marketing Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salvador, Brazil
Level Contributor
661 reviews
150 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 657 helpful votes
Reviewed March 17, 2014

A visit to such a lovely place should be split in two: a few days away for the start, and a few other in the hussle-and-bussle of the city! It's a wonderful choice to start your stay in such an elegant and exclusive place like Karmairi!
Taxi from the airport costs 40,000 Colombian pesos (don't pay any more cent!) and the 20min ride is most pleasant, one sees how detached the place is from the city, which can be reached three times a day by complimentary transfer from the hotel!
The main difference between a five-star and a boutique hotel is the exclusiveness, the fact that one is expected and unique and is going to have their most wishes taken care of, in a classy and refined atmosphere - that's why boutique hotels are more expensive and one not only expects but above all counts on the high amount paid being returned in full in those elements of exclusiveness! I'm afraid that wasn't always the case at Karmairi!
Check-in took much longer than necessary, for our reservation couldn't be found: where was the folder with our reservation and everything else connected to it waiting for us that any five-hotel would have, so as to speed up checkin and make the new guest feel welcome???
The welcome drink is most refreshing, Cartagena has average of 26º and may reach 40º in the summer! It wasn't exactly 'refreshing', though, to see it being charged for at check-out, not at all nice!
One should be very careful when booking rooms through Booking.com, for its categories and the hotels' do not match! It took us all a while to idetify the kind of room we paid for and the one allocated to us! I believe both parts must get in touch with each other and unifiy the terminology.
There are no rooms with twin beds, which means two friends must share a bed. Also, all mattresses are soft and I had to sleep on the floor! Housekeeping, though, was most kind and prompt in providing me with all means for that!
Rooms are excellent, elegant, with everything one needs; amenities are of great taste and high class! Plug adaptors are not provided, you should bring yours, which to me is another flop of the hotel!
A bottle of water sits on top of the fridge and another one can be found in it, they are both refilled along the day and/or every day! No other qualification than ridiculously greedy can explain why such an expensive place chooses to charge for water - another bad surprise when checking out!
Location is prime, the empty beach of Manzanillo belongs to the guests, so to speak, one can go for walks along the day and stretch out on the beds (sic) close to the water!
The infra-structure of the place is most welcoming, airy, spacious; staff is always welcoming and smily and ready to please, which is the main asset of Colombia as a nation!
Breakfast is interesting, it seems standard not offer a buffet but a fixed menu. One can see the point of avoiding waste and overeating (mostly by Americans, as pointed out!), as well as the charm and sense of serving!
Food is simply exquisit, of most refined taste, rich and concise - no wonder people drive 15km from Cartagena to dine there, simply amazing! Nevertheless, portions are really very small indeed, which must be te concept of the Peruvian chef. Personally, I believe the chef should be, like in most elegant restaurants elsewhere, aware of the fact that portions should be slightly more generous when the guest isn't ordering a starter! Comparing prices of similar restaurants in Europe, it's a major gain in taste to eat at Karmairi! But honestly-speaking, bring some snacks with you, or else you'll starve, unless their policy of tiny portions is changed!
Do allow yourself extra time and patience for the check-out process! The description is unexplicably complicated, which simply corroborates the many complaints here that a lot is added to the final bill that wasn't actually consumed/requested! The terminology used, the confusing different taxes (8% on food and 16% on accommodation), the display, nothing helps and one does leave the place with a feeling of being conned somehow - that is not nice!
Whenever leaving a five-star hotel elsewhere, guests are offered a treat, a small gift or souvenier, to keep e sweet memory of a (hopefully) pleasant stay. I was most disappointed that Karmairi didn't seem to care in that regard!
Anyway, the choice is after all a very good one, especially for those in need of an escape into the peace and quiet and reserved! One doesn't at all feel, though, their money fully returns in concrete terms while there, on the very contrary! Karmairi must learn that exclusive guests expect to pay some more AND/IN ORDER TO get a lot in return - once management realises that and that small, generous attitudes, with minor imapct on their budget and a huge one in the satisfaction of the guests, they'd be on the way to be a perfect boutique hotel!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank vitorbabrazil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Online-Marketing-Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, April 10, 2014
Hi,

We are glad you had an amazing time at Karmairi Hotel Spa. We would to clarify that we do not charge under any circunstance the welcome drink. Feel free to check your bill and you will make sure we did not charge it.

We hope you can come here soon and see for yourself that we improve in your recommendations and we would like to give you a better experience any time.

Have a nice day
Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Online Marketing Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed March 15, 2014 via mobile

Just returned from Colombia, and spend 3 first nights in Karmairi. We loved it! Absolutely beautiful place, amazing food, exceptional service. It is a 30min ride from Cartagena center, but it is a perfect place for relaxation! Free shuttle to Centro Historico is great and really, we cannot compliment the food enough! Arepas in the morning, ceviche, pulpo carpaccio, langustines, tuna tataki... ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS! Also a nice wine list was a pleasant surprise! Keep up the good work in Karmairi! And people, go to Colombia!! And go to Karmairi!

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Suvi S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Online-Marketing-Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, April 10, 2014
Hi,

We really appreciate your review and thank you for visiting Karmairi Hotel Spa. We are more than happy to have you here soon and enjoy all our areas and service.

Our staff is waiting for you.

Have a nice day
Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Online Marketing Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Campinas, SP
Level Contributor
93 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed March 4, 2014

That's the place to stay at if you are looking for some private relaxing time. The staff is very well trained, food is amazing and if you get to stay at one of the rooms facing the beach you will be able to enjoy an amazing sunset. They offer a shuttle to take you to the downtown twice a day, which is perfect. There are pretty shades on the beach for guests where you will also get drinks if you call waiters using a device that allows you do that while relaxing under the sun... I loved it and strongly recommend it for a very romantic trip.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Denise S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Online Marketing Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, March 5, 2014
Hi,

We really appreciate your review and we are very happy you had a great time at Karmairi Hotel Spa.

About the transfer remember we have free transfer 3 times a day and not twice.

We are glad you enjoy our food and drinks and specially our sunset which is the best in Cartagena.

Loooking forward to have you here.

Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Online Marketing Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid, Spain
Level Contributor
75 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2014

This is a very nice spa-boutique hotel. Very close to the beach, although the beach is not awesome. But very far from Cartagena (Google Maps show it at the city). So you'll spend time and money on taxis to/from Cartagena. There is a shuttle service from the hotel, but it has proven to be very unreliable. Staff was very helpful. Rooms are very nice and the breakfast is OK.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jesus M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Online Marketing Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Hello,

As you mentioned we have been problems with Google maps... altought if you type Karmairi Hotel Spa in Google Maps the location you mentioned is not the verified location. Also we are not far from Cartagena, we are only 15 minutes by car from Cartagena.

We would like to mention that we have 3 free shuttle service from/to Cartagena where you can take in order to enjoy the beauty of our city.

In our website you can check also the location.

Have a nice day

Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Online Marketing Director
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 7, 2013

Wedding ceremony.. awesome.. reception... outstanding... but the honeymoon at Karmairi,,, Spectacular! My new bride and I were treated as King and Queen.. the wait staff was cordial and attentive.. they seem to have more people working there than guests (the hotel was fully booked when we stayed). The room was perfectly clean and intimate (and we stayed in a basic room) and had an very nice "almost" outdoor shower. the view.. well... Paradise!

The spa pampering, impressive (we did the couples 3hr session) and the food delicious, combining regional flavors with hints from Peruvian and other latinamerican cuisine. Make sure and try the included breakfast arepas!..Cant wait to come back to have many more Maracuja Mojitos..
Check with hotel for times for the included transfers from the city, it will save you money and put you in a clean and spacious vehicle.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jorge A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Karmairi, Internet Marketing Director at Karmairi Hotel Spa, responded to this review, December 11, 2013
Hi,

We are very glad you had a great time at Karmairi Hotel Spa. We try to keep a high standard and the best service, so you can enjoy and relax at our hotel.

We also appreciate your review regarding the restaurant and bar. We do our best in order to improve our flavors and drinks all the time.

We are looking forward to have you here soon.

Sincerely
Andres Lesmes
Internet Marketing Director
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 Karmairi Hotel Spa

Property: Karmairi Hotel Spa
Address: Km 3 Via Manzanillo Del Mar, Cartagena, Colombia
Location: Colombia > Bolivar Department > Cartagena District > Cartagena
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#11 Romantic Hotel in Cartagena
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Cartagena
#16 Family Hotel in Cartagena
#16 Business Hotel in Cartagena
#22 Luxury Hotel in Cartagena
Hotel Class:5 star — Karmairi Hotel Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Using our main resource, water, Karmairi Spa show a comfortable space full of relaxation and healthiness, where our guests can find themselves and enjoy Cartagena. Come and enjoy our private beach and all the spaces that Karmairi Hotel Spa has for you. Enjoy the Caribbean in Colombia with us! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Karmairi Hotel Cartagena

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