Hotelera Vegasur is located only one block from the main beach in La Serena and within easy walking distance to nearby restaurants and the main beach promenade. It's about a 5 min taxi ride (approx 4,000 peso) from the bus station, although it is also entirely possible to walk to the bus station and a nearby-ish large shopping mall. Walking takes about 45 mins, but it is flat and pretty straightforward. We did it several times although there is also a local public bus option (which we didn't take). The central CBD of La Serena is about a 10 min taxi ride away, although again it is possible to walk (mostly along the beach) to the main square if you have a spare 60-90 minutes. Located opposite the hotel (it's really more of a caravan type park than a hotel) is a bakery and mini market and there is an ATM about 5 minutes walk up the beach away.
The premises itself is a combination of apartments and cabins set in a caravan park type garden setting. It looks like it was built in the 70's or early 80's as the vegetation is quite mature and the buildings look from that vintage.
Pros: the apartment we stayed in (23) was of medium size and comfortable. As previously mentioned it was older style, but everything worked and it was spacious enough. There was a fully functional and equipped kitchen, plenty of storage space, TV, older style, but perfectly clean and functional bathroom with great water pressure and a king sized bed. The apartment could technically sleep 4 (two adults and two kids) as there was a two single pullout beds in the kitchen which also doubled as a couch. But there was only the two of us so there was plenty of room for cooking and eating meals. Security is good with an in-room safe, adequate (although not great) locks on the windows and doors and an alarm and motion detector in the apartment.
All the staff were very friendly. Reception spoke good English although housekeeping and the breakfast ladies did not. Special kudos goes to the reception staff uniforms which were quite elaborate ! Breakfast is included in the rate but is fairly simple and consists of bread, cakes, tea, coffee, cheese and ham. However we did get scrambled eggs on our first morning. Wifi was free and the signal was strong enough although we did have problems with it disconnecting occasionally.
The premises also included a swimming pool, playground and you can hire out BBQs, deck chairs, DVD players etc. There was a large group of older Chileans staying while we were there so it's not exactly a party place, but a good place for couple or families.
Cons: as previously mentioned the furnishing and fittings are outdated and old school. But they all functioned properly, the place was very clean and we had no issues. The hot water takes a while to heat up and the walls are quite thin (brick) so you can hear your neighbours if you happen to have neighbours who liked singing in the shower, as we did. Strangely they do not supply dish washing detergent or scourers although a tea towel was supplied. The bathroom fan was a bit dodgy and made a terrible noise when it did finally crank up.
At only US $57 a night the apartment was fantastic value, especially as most other accommodation in La Serena is quite a bit more expensive. It was great to have an apartment with the extra room and the ability to cook. Value for money score 8/10 and we would definitely stay again if in La Serena.
Tip: it is entirely possible to catch a local bus to Pisco Elqui and Vacuna if you are keen to see the Pisco Valley and very beautiful hinterland. Just catch a bus form the local bus station (they leave quite frequently), return trip will cost about CP 8,000 ($US 16) which is a lot cheaper (and probably more fun) than taking a tour, which costs $US 44. You can get off and on in both Pisco Elqui and Vacuna and just buy tickets on the bus. The valley is very beautiful and the scenery very different to La Serena.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Apart Hotel and Cabins Vegasur enjoys a privileged location, spacious and beautiful gardens, warm and friendly service and unique service combining Apart Hotel and Cabins. Our location in the area of Av. Del Mar La Serena, just meters from the beach and Av. Cuatro Esquinas guarantees quick access to the Mall Plaza La Serena, city center and bus station. We are an hour from Vicuña, Andacollo and Ovalle where you can enjoy its beautiful scenery and tourist attractions. We invite you to enjoy our Apart Hotel and Cabins 3 star. Welcome! ... more less
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