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“The perfect Colonial Style Hotel” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Caribe

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Hotel Caribe
Ranked #30 of 148 Hotels in Cartagena
Certificate of Excellence
Williamstown, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
178 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
“The perfect Colonial Style Hotel”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 28, 2010

We just returned from a week at the Hotel Caribe in the Bocagrande neighborhood of Cartagena, Colombia. What a hotel! You almost feel like you have been transported back in time to a bygone era of old Colombia. But, there are still plenty of modern conveniences that make the stay comfortable and more than pleasant.

We had a magnificent view of the city from one side of our suite and a view of the lake and then off to the ocean from the other side. Each morning we checked to see if the sloths and iguanas in the trees below had moved during the wee hours of the night.

There is a sensational pool and great facilities, including a fitness room, game room and computer room. We had breakfast at the hotel one morning, which was a delightful spread of Colombia foods including fresh fruits. There are other eateries as well.

The staff is great--friendly and eager to make your stay exceptional.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Washboardmary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,327 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (139)
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English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 12, 2010

Not a hotel to write home about... definitely a nice place that seemed popular for large groups (has modern conveniences in the rooms, but definitely not one of the nicest hotels in the city). Was very happy to go from here to Hotel Charleston Santa Teresa in the Old City.

Stayed in the new part of the hotel. Rooms are nice and pretty quiet. Shower isn't the strongest. I later realized my room had small ants on the table which ended up on my clothes.

TIPS: Food was horrible (sandwhiches and breakfast). Probably some of the worst food I've ever eaten (worse than a bad cafeteria). Pool is great- very large and has a nice small pool for kids. Pool seemed big and well maintained. Like everyone else said, beach outside the hotel isn't great (not the white sand, blue water you see in the Caribbean). Definitely a lot of vendors on the beach (but that happens to you everywhere in Cartagena). There is a small store nearby the hotel, where you can pick up water/snacks in case you don't want to pay the hotel's prices.

In the end, if you are looking to save money and want some modern convenience, it's not a bad option. Just don't expect to get much from staying there. If you are on a romantic getaway, I would definitely stay in one of the nicer hotels in the Old City.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank HoyaTravelerUSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westport, New Zealand
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 1, 2010

Great hotel, excellent service, good food, clean, safe, friendly,beach out the front, relaxed pool atmosphere ( small pool for children). Buffet meals.
Need to update childrens play area but otherwise very stisfying holiday.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank HeidiR4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Farmington Hills, Michigan
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 24, 2010

Cannot have business mettings in your room or around the pool if they are not guests of the hotel.Very poor policy.No respect for the individual guest.Nice pool and area surrounding the pool.Beach area overflowing with vendors selling goods and services.Rooms adequate and internet reliable.Short cab ride to old town.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank John111B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boca Raton, Florida
Level Contributor
16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 13, 2010

My wife and I stayed here for 2 nights, during March of this year. I had stayed at this hotel 2 previous times; the last time being about 6 years ago. My stays had always been pleasant. I always liked the colonial look of this hotel, and therefore requested to stay at the colonial tower during this stay. I must say however, that I was really disappointed by this hotel.

It all started as I arrived. At the front desk, there are approximately six separate lines, but there were only 2 attendants. One was busy with another customer, and the other was acting busy and talking to another attendant. I stood there for about 3 minutes, and was not acknowledged. I walked to the bellhop, and asked him who could help me. He nicely took me back to where I was initially, and told me i'd be helped. However, by this time, the lady that was acting busy was now helping another family of about 5. All in all, it took almost 20 minutes for me to be helped (insane). While I waited, I couldn't help noticing there was a piece of the roof, right above the check-in counter, that looked to be falling apart. As I got to the room, the door wouldn't close properly; there is an alarm on the door that goes off whenever the door is not closed properly. This means that the annoying alarm went off continuously during my stay. Though I did not observe any mold, the bedroom smelled very much like it; it was not pleasant. One of the white sheets on the bed had an old stain. The bathroom was clean, but was small, needed updating, and the roof was dirty and had a depressing look.

There were some positive things though. I noticed that the pool area had been updated, adding a kiddie area; I guess that is good for customers with children. The breakfast buffet was very good, as always. The bar looked very nice, and the prices looked to be very decent. The internet room (with a small fee) was very clean, and seemed to have everything in order. I also enjoyed seeing a couple of different animals in the area immediately next to the pool.

Finally, I had dinner one night in what they called "steak, or beef night;" It was suppossed to be a buffet. Having been in Rio a week prior and eating at the hotels steak house, I ignorantly expected something similar. In all fairness I must say it was horrible and expensive. Even the desserts were bad. Very disappointing.

I still think that this hotel is nice, and has a lot of potential. However, it is in need of big time TLC (repairs, etc.). I won't stay here again, untill someone else tells me that all of these negative things I observed have been taken care of.
Still like it, but will try another hotel next time.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank travelingblue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bogota
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2010

Our stay at hotel Caribe was very pleasant, even though it isn´t excacly one of the cheapest ones. Normally I stay in budget hotels, but for Cartagena I truly recommend a better one. It is extremely hot, so air conditiniong is a must and a nice pool area makes the stay a lot more pleasant. The beaches in the city are quite nasty and very, very busy, so in reality you might end up spending more time at the hotel as expected.

The hotel has its "own beach", but it is not really worth it AT ALL. Sand and water are very dirty and you wont have a moment of peace due to people trying to sell you various things. If you are looking for a day at the beach, I recommend getting out of the city and going to an island. We went to Playa Blanca, which has white sand an turqouis water. Pictoresque place, but also quite busy. We went through the hotels travel service and the price was 75 000 pesos. That included car ride to the harbour and boat trips there and back. The boat was really small and it wasnt excacly a smooth ride, but it gets you there so really no complaints. There are probably cheaper ways, but we didnt have much time to find out about other options.

Our room was very roomy and clean, no complaints. Breakfast buffet was good and it is nice to have the option to have breakfast either by the pool or inside. The pool itself was ok, but there isnt always enough seating for everyone. The pool area however is beatiful, especially at night time. They also have a sauna (which actually does not resemble a real sauna at all), turkish steam room (very nice) and a jacuzzi.

One very troubling thing about the hotel was that they had monkeys and parrots in cages in the yard. Cages are very small and the animals are clearly unhappy. Biiig minus for that.

Location of the hotel is good. It is right by the beach, almost in the heart of Boca Grande and relatively close to el centro. It is very easy to get to the old city from the hotel. You can take a taxi for 5000-6000 pesos and it only takes 10 minutes or so.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MarikkiK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york city
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 15, 2010

During my one-week stay with a group, I found the staff to be most accommodating and friendly. We stayed in the newer building. Our rooms, the pool, and overall hotel were clean and well maintained One exception: the windows in my room needed a good washing. My bed was very comfortable. The location was easily convenient to just about everything. The Caribe is an old hotel with architecture reflecting the 1930's. I think that 's what gives the hotel its relaxed, tropical atmosphere, especially by the pool area that's surrounded by palm trees and foliage and pastel-colored hotel structures. The pool was large and really clean with an adjoining kiddie pool, and I enjoyed eating breakfast poolside (under the awning where it's cooler, as opposed to out in the sun). The breakfast buffet that was included was certainly good, but not outstanding. There was good entertainment by the pool every night in the form of music and sometimes dancers. My room was large with two king size beds, a safe, a clock radio, and a minibar refrigerator, but it didn't have a microwave or coffeemaker. The air conditioning was fine, but the bathroom, while adequate, showed its age--not enough light, and the sink and tub stoppers didn't work and the shower leaked. The beach area was ok but not very scenic compared to others in Cartagena. I do not believe it is a private beach at all, and the vendors don't leave you alone and can be quite annoying. The beach is actually across a narrow but highly trafficked street. I was on the second floor overlooking the beach, as opposed to the rear area poolside and tropical garden view (which I would choose if I went back). If you want the beach view, I suggest that you go for a higher floor to get more of the beach and less of the traffic (and the noise that goes with it if you open a window). I would defintely go back, provided I got a rate that was reasonable compared to other hotels.

  • Stayed February 2010
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank stealaway
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Caribe

Property: Hotel Caribe
Address: Carrera 1 No. 2 - 87 | Bocagrande, Cartagena 130010, Colombia
Location: Colombia > Bolivar Department > Cartagena District > Cartagena
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Cartagena
#13 Family Hotel in Cartagena
#19 Luxury Hotel in Cartagena
#19 Business Hotel in Cartagena
#23 Romantic Hotel in Cartagena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Caribe 4*
Number of rooms: 363
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set outside the old city on the beaches of Bocagrande, Hotel Caribe, a certified ¨National Monument¨, was built in 1941 and still maintains its original five-story, 99-room Colonial structure. The resort has since added two modern buildings making it the largest hotel in Cartagena.It has 363 rooms with ocean or hotel garden-views (16 of which are wheel-chair-friendly), 4 restaurants, 10 conference rooms, a mini-zoo, tennis courts, a semi-Olympic – sized pool as well as one for the kids. The Caribe Hotel offers a first class service with lot facilities. The Caribe Hotel with three buildings and 363 rooms is considered one of the most traditional Hotel in the city, with an area of 35,000 m2 of exotic tropical trees and gardens, 5,000 being devoted to ample beaches and 30,000 to Hotel facilities. The majestic structure of the Hotel Caribe, surrounded by palms and exotic gardens, rises from the heart of Bocagrande. The Hotel has 363 rooms with different lodging options to make your stay an unforgettable experience, additional offers the finest recreational and sports facilities. We provide our guest an incredible variety of gastronomical possibilities, from the most sophisticated international cuisine to exquisite typical dishes and snacks. Our Guest may select the Catalina Restaurant, Oh Caribe bungalow, Punta Icacos garden and the pool area with a scenario for folklore reviews and theme parties. In regard to congresses, seminars, and conventions the Caribe possesses a magnificent infrastructure that includes ten meeting rooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Caribe Hotel Cartagena

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