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“Decent hotel with a great view...”

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Design Suites Calafate
Ranked #24 of 70 Hotels in El Calafate
Certificate of Excellence
Sitges, Spain
Level Contributor
71 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 152 helpful votes
“Decent hotel with a great view...”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 6, 2013 via mobile

Just as context my wife travel extensively and usually stay in high-end hotels. That will be my reference point. We ended up in the Design hotel because we made late reservation and our first choices were full. We had mixed feelings about the hotel that I will describe below...

The building and rooms
The hotel is located in a high part of the city 10-15 minutes away from the center with an amazing view of lago Argentino. The view alone is worth a detour although you get pretty nice views from anywhere in this part of the world. The rooms are simple in line with a European three star hotel - so functional but with no charm. We had some hygiene issues since our sheets had some blood stains. The hotel gave us new ones so we worked that out in the end but that have us a moderate first impression...

Restaurant
If you are in a hurry the place is fine but the food is honestly not that good. They are clearly trying to make visually appealing dishes but the result is somewhat amateurish and the flavors are not very noteworthy. You should plan to eat in many of the better restaurants in town - a short cab away. The breakfast is OK with a simple buffet (in line with the initial three star impression)

Service
The service was patchy. When someone was at the desk they tried to be helpful but there were often many people at the reception since there was usually just one person (or no one) so plan to have some time before you can solve any issue. We had a bad experience with one of the tours - we actually asked for a transfer from Calafate to Torres del Paine but instead they sold us a full day tour or Torres del Paine...needless to say we didn't have the right shoes on for trekking and had other plans for the afternoon...but we made it work and in the end it was a nice tour...although we never intended to buy it. One other thing; make sure to reserve your tours upfront, we didn't and because of that were quite limited in the options we had (as there is only one tour operator that offers walks in the Perito Moreno).

Overall we enjoyed our stay at Calafate, the place is amazing and we enjoyed the views and the boat ride to the glaciers. The hotel was functional but not a place where you wanted to spend too much time. It felt somewhat over-priced but then again it was high season...

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank cvidela4791
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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969 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (75)
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New York City, New York
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2013

We stayed at the Design Suites for 3 nights on our recent trip to El Calafate. Unlike other hotels, this hotel is a bit out of town which allows it to have an amazing view of the lake. The rooms and hotel itself is beautiful and cozy. The hotel's pool and spa was also wonderful especially after a long day of trekking. Even though the hotel is bit out of the town they offer complimentary shuttles which is a nice convenience. The breakfast was ok at best there was not really that much variety but other than that we had a wonderful stay here.

Room Tip: Request a room with a view of the lake, the view is amazing!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
Thank MS246
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, January 3, 2013
Dear MS246,
Thank you so much for your review! It's great to hear from our guests and every review, good or bad, helps us to improve the quality of our service. About the quality of our breakfast, we are going to take your comment into consideration to improve it. We hope to see you again soon at any of our four destinations.
Sinerely,

The Staff from Design Suites Calafate
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 30, 2012

We have stayed at the Design Suites in all of their locations other than Buenos Aires: Salta, Bariloche and Calafate. Each one is beautiful and well kept. We love that their breakfast includes scrambled eggs which might not seem like a big deal, but for most Americans who are used to this morning staple, it can be very hard to find at other Argentine hotels- at least as an INCLUDED part of your meal! The rooms are modern and clean, the bathrooms are great (heated floors), the staff is friendly and helpful. The only thing that was mildly annoying is the location in Calafate was unable to fulfill our request for a late checkout (we were hoping they would let us check out at 12 instead of 11 since check-in isn't until 3 for the next guest). They all have lovely and cozy communal areas though, so if you have to wait around for an excursion or transportation, you will be quite comfortable. It is located a bit outside of the main town center but has a spectacular view of the lake and mountains. Free shuttle transportation is provided to and from the town at very convenient intervals each day.

Room Tip: Lake view is preferable but all rooms are great!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sara K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, January 3, 2013
Dear Sara K,
Thank you so much for your review! We love to hear from our guests and it's great to know that you have been able to travel around Argentina and enjoyed our hotels. We hope that you continue to discover this wonderful country and that we see you again soon at any of our locations.
Sincerely,
The Staff from Design Suites
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brooklyn, nyc
Level Contributor
46 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 9, 2012

We stayed only one night after travelling for over 20 hours to get from NYC to the start of our Patagonian trip. After renting our car and we checked-in during the evening. This experience was somewhat disappointing, and overall the staff, from front desk to the food service, seemed fairly disinterested and not particularly hospitable and helpful.

Our room was at the end of the hallway so we had fantastic views, and we specifically chose this destination for this reason, along with the design aesthetic. Unfortunately the facilities and rooms are showing their wear, and the bed was uncomfortable. If you do choose to stay here, come for the location and the views, not the service.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank dailln4n4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, December 11, 2012
Dear dailln4n4,
We would like to thank you for your review. The feedback from our guests helps us to improve the quality of our service. We find your suggestions about our service very useful and they are going to be taken in consideration. Thanks again and we hope to see you again soon.
Sincerely,

The Staff from Design Suites Calafate
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco
Level Contributor
29 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 2, 2012

I arrived at the hotel to be greeted with a glass of champagne-a great way to start off my stay. It's a few miles from downtown EC, but that's ok as most tour busses will pick you up right in front of the hotel. The staff was very friendly and helpful, the food and drinks weren't bad, the rooms were comfortable and clean. I would definitely stay there again.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank edrobbie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, December 5, 2012
Dear edrobbie,
Thank you so much for your review! We love to hear from our guests and it helps us to improve the quality of our service. We are glad to know that you had a nice stay with us and we hope to see you again soon.
Sincerely,

The Staff from Design Suites Calafate
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 17, 2012

A friend who'd been there suggested this hotel and it was great. They gave us a room with a view on the lake and the scenery was just spectacular. To wake up each morning with such a view and so up close was so unique and just one of the best memories of our Patagonia trip. The hotel itself is very alpine in the wooden look and feel, wooden beams etc, and at the lobby there is a great fireplace where u can sit and read a book or just njoy the view of the lake. The decoration is also quite arty...instead of paintings on the walls you get bathtowel-made creations. The indoor swimming pool is great (especially after a windy walk outside) and again with great bay windows overlooking the lake. Breakfast was great too.
Regarding the location, it is the one hotel that is far from the town centre, but that said, it was an easy and quick walk (in the nature) to and back from the town centre, and there was always the option of the free hotel shuttle service. Personally, i liked being in the middle of nowhere but still at walking distance from the town.
At the reception they offer various deals with local agencies for tours and excursions which we found very helpful and who accepted payment both in USD and/or card payment. As these excursions start very early in the am, you are better off dealing with the hotel reception the night before rather than waiting for the agencies to open the following morning. This way u make sure you have an activity/excursion plan for the next day.
Would definitely stay there again and would highly recommend it to anyone visiting Calafate.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a lake view.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank blanqui_2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, November 22, 2012
Dear blanqui_2,
Thank you so much for your review! We are happy to know that you had a great stay with us and that you enjoyed the wonders of Calafate. Reviews like yours encourage us to work harder everyday to keep improving the quality of our service. Thank you again and we hope to see you again soon.
Sincerely,
The Staff from Design Suites Calafate
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wynnewood, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
56 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 8, 2012

After a day at the glaciers in cold and windy weather, we arrived at Design Suites for a three night stay. The hotel is a modern wood structure that fits right into its high desert terrain. The staff could not have been more welcoming as we were shown our room facing the lake. The contemporary room was handsomly appointed - both bed and bath exceeded expectations. The spa was spotless and inviting. The hotel is not in the center of town so the hotel has arranged for a van to make a round trip to town each hour after 6:00 pm. This hotel is a great place to relax and/or take day trips sightseeing. My one complaint is that many of the staff did not know a single word of English so that my four-minute egg arrived as a scrambled one. A minor inconvenience given the beauty of this venue.

Room Tip: Ask for a lakeside room.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Barb1942
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
milogeraghty, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Design Suites Calafate, responded to this review, November 12, 2012
Dear Barb1942,
We would like to thank you for your review. Knowing the opinions of our guests helps us improve the quality of our service. We were very glad to discover that you had a nice stay with us and we are very sorry for the language problems. We are going to take your suggestion in consideration. We hope to see you again soon.
Sincerely,

The Staff of Design Suites Calafate
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 Design Suites Calafate

Property: Design Suites Calafate
Address: Calle 598 Numero 190 | Playa Lago Argentino, El Calafate, Argentina
Location: Argentina > Patagonia > Province of Santa Cruz > El Calafate
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in El Calafate
#12 Luxury Hotel in El Calafate
#31 Romantic Hotel in El Calafate
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Design Suites Calafate 4.5*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated about one mile from El Calafate downtown, the Design Suites Calafate is an excellent choice for guests who seek tranquility during their holidays.This boutique hotel is located in the upper area of the Nimes Peninsula, where you can admire the low vegetation, hills and lake invite during a pleasant walk. If you want to visit the city, the hotel offers a shuttle to downtown on a regular basis.As a guest of the Design Suites Calafate, you will have free access to the heated pool, sauna and gym. In addition, the hotel provides a health club and spa treatments in order to optimize your relaxation during your stay.A restaurant and a bar provide meals and drinks from the morning until late at night. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Design Suites Calafate Hotel El Calafate
Design Hotel El Calafate
Design Hotel Calafate
Design Suites Calafate El Calafate, Argentina - Patagonia

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