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“Nice gardens...shame about everything else!” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of San Martin Resort & Spa

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San Martin Resort & Spa
Ranked #33 of 78 Hotels in Foz do Iguacu
Essex, England
Level Contributor
304 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
“Nice gardens...shame about everything else!”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2013

People only stay here because of its location - being quite close to the entrance to Iguazu (the Brazilian side). In fact, you cannot walk to Iguazu as it is too far - you have to drive quite a way from the main gates to the trains that take you around the falls. The hotel presents very well from the outside - lovely gardens and a large pond, beautiful flowers, etc. However, inside it is like a prison or mental hospital - it is drab, drab, drab! I have never been anywhere which sucked the joy of living out of you like walking down the San Martin's corridors - an awful experience. Then the rooms are just so bad - small, cramped boxes with no character at all. The fixtures & fittings appear to be of the cheap & nasty end of the DIY spectrum. We changed rooms because we were so close to the perimeter path thru the gardens (grounds) and had people staring in at us as there were no net curtains - just a blind that if pulled down meant you had no light and could not see out! We pointed this out to reception who were very unhelpful, difficult and aggressive. The 2nd room was no better so we were shown another - it was smaller (!) but looked in to the interior garden area where no-one went so therefore more private.

Breakfast (buffet) was not bad at all but the staff were mostly surly apart from a couple of people. We tried dinner (also buffet) once but it was not great - not that bad, just average really.

The free wifi was very weak and was only possible (just) in the lobby. There were 2 laptops available in the lobby but there was a high charge if you wished to access the internet (but they were providing free wifi in the lobby so how/what/why??)

We had snacks in the bar more than once and not only were the bar staff friendly but the food and drinks (cocktails and coffees/teas) were excellent - this was the best part of the hotel by a long way - especially in terms of staff attitude.

The other oasis of warmth & light was the shop (run independently) where the owner and her assistant were lovely and chatty!

Final recommendation: choose another hotel and don't be swayed by the San Martin's proximity to Iguazu Falls and the bird park next door.

Room Tip: Not sure if they have any "good" rooms (or suites) but some are even worse than others! A...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank pd7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,365 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
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Howick, South Africa
Level Contributor
89 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 8, 2013

Very big hotel, only that the superior rooms are extreemly small.
Typical for a hotel which caterers mainly for tours arriving in big busses.

Garden and park superb, very nice to walk and enjoy nature.

Pool little to small for the number of guests.

Breakfast average.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank maizemiller2003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
los angeles
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 8, 2013

First of all this is nothing close to a 4 star hotel. It is very old and. Horrible service except for Cesar in the front. We get there and went straight to the falls. The only perk. Is the location to the Brazil side of the falls which why I gave it a 2 instead of a1. When we came back for the fall we mt to eat by the pool and were ignored by the pool man waiter. He was rude and did not provide service. We shared our concern and the receptionist was apologetic but nothing was done not even an apology. From reviews below we Are not alone with this concern. The rooms are very small and. Uncomfortable. Our rooms was infested with aunts. We. Told the front and nothing was. Done. The breakfast was included but it was poor quality. The hotel other perk is that it's is
Ess than five minutes away from. The brazil airport and asking distance to Bird park. When I go back I will not stay here for sure.

Room Tip: Get a room in the back with. A balcony. If possible
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank nancy d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 28, 2013

Stayed here in Dec '11 so sorry for a late review!

After reading the comments relating to this hotel I was expecting the worst (booked regardless though for location). However it was excellent.

I was 1 day late confirming the flights (there wasn't much email in the amazon) so got a bus to the hotel, really easy and even got on/off the wrong one first and had the right bus pointed out for us. Frequent service and so close to the hotel if your with a light backpack can easily walk. I did however book the free return taxi!

Great location, next to the bird park, walk to falls entrance (although the Arg. side was so much better I'd stay over there next time!!!) and bus stop outside for town (even as a non spanish speaker the drivers/attendants are really helpful)

Back to the hotel, the previous reports of unhelpful staff were non existent, I found them to all be polite and helpful with my questions and requests. There were no unexpected charges, we ate at the bar and found the food tasty and well priced for a hotel in Brazil (tip - go to the Arg. side and have a really good meal for a fraction of the price). The pool staff were efficient and friendly running around the hotel to find an icecream we wanted that they ran out off.

The pool was cold, but that was only really as I had come down from manaus where the pool was 30deg.

Overall, yes its expensive, but it was worth it for the little luxury touches, however next time I'd stay on the Arg side for 1/2 the price and have the day traveling back to the Brazil side instead.

Oh I think the attitude problems are relating to Brazil in general, there is an air of richness in Brazil and it shows, same as say.. london or paris, problem of getting rich to quickly, in contrast Arg. was really smiling and happy to see you and everyone will just chat to you, try the bus that crosses the border, your soon realize what I mean!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank The_Hooded_Claw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport Beach
Level Contributor
58 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2013

In summary, you pay a huge premium for being close to the falls and for having a nice swimming pool and large grounds. After several bad experiences with staff and then finding a cockroach in our room, we were forced to conclude: there must be better out there.

PROS
1. Pool - dirty, but large.
2. Location - great for the falls, but bad for town. Expensive taxis back and forth for dinner added up.

CONS
1. Service - horrendous. At the pool, at reception and everywhere in between, service was slow and unprofessional. Despite the sheer number of bodies, all people we encountered were completely disinterested in helping us. And, in fact, several staff were outright rude for no good reason.
2. Value - at over £100/night, this place left us feeling somewhat ripped off compared to other places we stayed in Brazil. Fine, it was Christmas. And fine, they've got a great location for sight-seeing (not eating!), but the rooms were small, compact and utterly without character.
3. Restaurant prices - we desperately took a taxi to a supermercado at one point to avoid more rip-offs at the bar and restaurant. As above, your pretty stranded at this hotel. Town is a trek!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank agoodley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
96 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 21, 2012 via mobile

Stayed here one night with one mission...Iguazu Falls. Complimentary airport pick up..though they charge $R20 to the airport which is only 1 mile.

Check-in was straightforward, rooms are smallish though comfortable. Nothing else is nearby so if you are staying longer it might feel secluded. We ate the buffet dinner in the restaurant for $R45. It was ok, not great, not bad...not catered to kids or vegetarians...unless you like lots of dessert. They do serve a la carte though the prices seemed steep for hotel food.

Iguazu park is less than 300meters, literally down the road so easily walkable.

Staff response was hit and miss...no one was rude just some were more cheerful than others. Overall seems good value if your purpose is to visit the park and not hang around the hotel.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Ralcolm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Trinidad
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 19, 2012

This hotel is conveniently located 300 m (a 5-10 minute walk) from the entrance to the Brazilian side of the Iguassu Falls park, from which you can pay the entrance fee and take one of the double-decker buses. The hotel is located on beautiful grounds and makes for pretty photo ops.

THEIR CUSTOMER SERVICE HOWEVER IS VERY POOR. First of all they lost my hotels.com reservation. Luckily for me, they had rooms available and offered me one at the same rate as hotels.com.

They also supposedly have a policy where they pay for taxi fares from the airport, however that did not apply to us. We were apparently supposed to have “confirmed our booking” two days in advance. Who the hell does that anymore? With hotels.com and expedia, there is no need for anyone to confirm their bookings. But this is their reason for not paying for our taxi fares.

Their restaurant food was not particularly great, although their buffet breakfast was filling. It made us wonder why their waiters were so snobby. At least they did not automatically deduct a service fee. They made the tip optional, which was good because they did not deserve it. Although the hotel is located near the Falls, it is far from the Foz do Iguassu city so there aren’t many other dining options unless you have a car.

There was actually one night when the electricity went during a storm, and remained off for a few hours. There was obviously no backup generator at this hotel.

The air conditioning unit was not properly positioned in the room, as it was directed straight at the bed. No amount of maneuvering could get the comfort levels what we wanted. It was either too hot or too cold. I also don’t think the AC was properly sized for the room.

The Tour Information desk also gave us incorrect information concerning the Iguassu Falls attractions. We were told there was no place at the park where you could see wild life etc, although there is a wild life observatory at one of the stops. If we had known about this, we could have planned our day a little better.

Overall, it’s a good hotel if you desire to visit Iguassu Falls, and you don’t care for first class treatment. You don’t need a tour, you can walk. Although, there are actually other hotels nearby that are also close to the Falls. However, if customer service is important to you, then this is not your hotel. If you are there and happen to have any customer related concerns, try getting help from anyone other than Marco.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank dcheddie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about San Martin Resort & Spa

Property: San Martin Resort & Spa
Address: Rodovia das Cataratas, Km 21 | Parque Nacional Do Iguacu, Foz do Iguacu, State of Parana 85855-750, Brazil
Location: Brazil > State of Parana > Foz do Iguacu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Foz do Iguacu
#6 Spa Hotel in Foz do Iguacu
#8 Luxury Hotel in Foz do Iguacu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — San Martin Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 135
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
San Martin Hotel and Resort is located just for 400 meters from the main entrance of the National Park, 03 kilometers from Foz do Iguaçu Airport, and 10 kilometers from the downtown. The resort has 135 rooms, divided in 3 categories. The simple one is the standard, the superior is a medium comfort, and superior class the deluxe one, and junior suites. All the rooms have TV, air con, minibar, telephone, wi-fi free of charge, trail inside of the wood for walking, and a beautiful and wonderful pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
San Martin Hotel Foz Do Iguacu
San Martin Hotel And Resort
San Martin Resort & Spa Foz Do Iguacu, Brazil

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