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“fun night out” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of La Plaza de Macondo - CLOSED

La Plaza de Macondo
Price range: $4 - $14
Cuisines: Caribbean, Latin, Colombian, South American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine, Bar scene, Families with children
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Breakfast, Dinner, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“fun night out”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 18, 2012

The town of Barranquilla in Columbia has a carnival second only to that of Rio de Janeiro. It started last night and we were treated to a taste of it at La Plaza de Macondo in the Getsemani district of historic Cartagena. We were entertained by an engagingly choreographed show of carnival music and dance: the piece with death against life was completely absorbing. Kudos to death in his skeleton suit! Be prepared for a wall of sound. Shows are on Thursday, Friday & Saturday.

We arrived a bit early and enjoyed flavourful happy hour drinks at ½ price (6 – 9 pm): macondo verde with aguardiente and mint, and macondo loco with coconut and tropical fruit.

The venue is spacious and airy with charming and colourful wall paintings representing magic realism. The owner was welcoming and informative. Great patacones … the seafood patacones were particularly delicious. Main courses were ample and well priced. You can’t beat this for atmosphere; it’s great to get out of the centro historico to the vibrant energy of Getsemani.

  • Visited February 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank R0VIN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
borisain, Manager at La Plaza de Macondo, responded to this review, February 24, 2012
Thanks, for your comments. We are glad that you had a nice time with us.

Best regards,

BORIS SAIN BARBOZA
Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

52 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    28
    15
    4
    2
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Canada
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Good food ruined by awful service”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 8, 2012

Let me just get this out of the way and say that the food at Macondo was actually pretty good. Then again it wasn't outstanding either, and this being Cartagena, there are better options at the same price point. Speaking of price point, don't be fooled by this place, you will not pay what you expect.

The menu clearly says that IVA (tax or impuesto) is included in the prices but the bill that came to us had the IVA added on top of the prices. We ended up paying it and remembering later because there was another charge on top of the IVA on the bill called S. VOLUN. Having traveled for a 2 months in central america at this point of our trip I kind of figured it meant "servicio voluntario" meaning a tip. I asked the waiter but he amazingly said "No, service is NOT included on the bill". I called him over again and asked him to explain each charge on the bill but he didn't take back his lie. Instead he said the charge is "some money that goes to the kitchen because they don't get paid much". I looked at him and just gave him my credit card. Funny enough when the credit card receipt came back it said "PROPINA" for the exact amount of the S. VOLUN item. For those that don't know propina is the exact translation for TIP.

So in the end we ended up paying the tax (IVA) that was supposed to be included and we narrowly avoided paying way too much in tip's (I suppose he wanted another 15% on top of the bill?). To put this in perspective that would have made the bill around 50% higher than expected.

  • Visited February 2012
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank TravellingCanook
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
borisain, Gerente at La Plaza de Macondo, responded to this review, May 31, 2012
Dear Sir,

Thanks for taking the time to write us about your experience in our restaurant, we didn't answer you before because, thanks to your comment we started an investigation about it and find out that these waiters tell lies like in your case for their personal benefit.

Please let us explain the how is this theme:
1. The VAT in colombia is 16% over the price, in our restaurant this tax is included on the menue price. When you recive your invoice the cashier system, separates this two quantitys because legal issues, and information to the costumers so that whay they can know the real price and what corresponds to the VAT, before tax.

2. 'by disposal of the superintendentcy of industry and commerce this establishment, suggest to the costumer a voluntary tip that corresponds to the 10% over the value of the account, excluding vat, tip percentage could be accepted by you or modified by valuation of service provided. if you do not want to cancel it, please, inform to the cashier or administrator, or if you wish to pay a different value, please inform to the cachier too, in order to make the setting', this is a colombian legal disposal and this message is printed in the menu and invoice too, is also a standard for the waiters to ask the costumer if they wishes to include the tip in the bill, then at the end of the week the restaurant gives back to the kitchen staff and waiters (70/30) the tips recolected in this period.

Thanks to your review and other costumers we were able to find out what was happening an fired these people.

Best regards,


BORIS SAIN BARBOZA
Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BA
Level Contributor
45 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Colombian food done with a twist. Well worth visiting.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2012

This place deserves your custom because it offers tasty Colombian fare prepared with a difference and reasonably priced.

Mains cost from $10. Three courses could be had from $20 (including 10% tip) with drinks costing on top of that.

I had potatoes with hogar and guacamole for a starter. I turns out hogar is some kind of savoury tomato salsa and it was a tasty and interesting take on classic Colombian cuisine. I had the fish with coconut rice, plantain chips and salad for main. This was nicely presented and a good value dish. The fish was a little dry and overcooked but easy enough to eat. I finished with the passionfruit mousse which was ok but overpriced for a small portion served unadorned but for a tough sprig of mint.

The vibe of the place is great with large, fun murals on the walls. You can watch the kitchen staff at work behind a bar/counter. They have some kind of special music, dancing or games every night of the week and a bar with cocktail specials. It is however quite noisy even when there are few people there.

One minor quibble: on the menus they make a point of saying they recommend a 10% tip but to feel free to round up or down according to how you find the service but then in actuality the bill just came with 10% service added.

  • Visited February 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank LostMyWander
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
20 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Great place for authentic Colombian food.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 1, 2012

Great service and a very good meal with the key Colombian specialties, and they have live shows on Thursday and Saturday nights. A reason to come out to the less touristy Getsemaní neighborhood, which I personally prefer.

    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank walkupsidedown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
borisain, Manager at La Plaza de Macondo, responded to this review, February 3, 2012
Dear walkupsidedown,

Thank you very much for your comments, we are pleased that you enjoyed the program on your last visit, for future information this is my e-mail: administracion@laplazademacondo.com, where you can contact us on your next visit to Cartagena.

yours truly,


Boris Sain Barboza
Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tilburg
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Really tasty Colombian food”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 1, 2012

Go and eat here and you won´t regret it! They serve great traditional Colombian dishes and Colombian drinks. Try the ´posta negra, it´s a delicious meal of beef marinated in beer and some kind of dark sugar. Service is good and the restaurant looks great. It is not that busy yet but they have just openend a few months ago. Definitely worth the visit and in the Getsemani neighbourhood close to a lot of hostels and hotels.

  • Visited January 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank traveler5045
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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