The ‘Costa del Sol Hotel’ is a very well located place to stay at Cartagena. It’s situated in Bocagrande, right in front of the beach (this area has a lot of restaurants and shops, you can also find a lot of souvenirs street-sellers, so you don't have to worry about being bored). The hotel is also very close to the city center, it’s a 5 minutes trip on taxi or a 20-25 minutes walk (personally, I recommend walking: this way you save a lot of money, plus you get to enjoy the breeze and take a lot of great photos wile you walk along the beach).
Right after we bought this trip, we checked on TripAdvisor this hotel the reviews made us feel scared about this place, but reality is very different: Yes this place is not a 4 - 5 star super confort hotel with room service, with a specialised city tour agency and all those stuff people may be used to, but this is a great and cheap place to stay while you visit one of the most beautiful cities from Colombia. The main entrance is a few steps from the beach; as always check in starts a 3pm and check out finishes a 1pm. You'll need to pick up and change your towels at the front desk (which is kind of handy after you spend some time at the beach). The hotel uses electronic cards as keys, if you forget yours at your room you can ask for a replacement (but if you lose the card it will cost you COP 50000).
Rooms are quite good. We had 2 rooms (the first one had a kind bed and the other one had 2 single beds - have to say that mattresses are very confortable) each had it’s own bathroom, a desk, something that could be a couch, a closet, air conditioning, a small fridge and a TV. These are very simple rooms, they weren't very pretty but they fulfilled our needs, as if you go to Cartagena you'd spend only sleep hours at your hotel.
The main dining area is quite basic: there’s a buffet area, the salad bar and the juice bar. The food is ok, it may not be a delicious and beautifully presented dish but it’s well cooked and tastes good. For me breakfast is the best meal at this place (they serve scrambled eggs, sausage, hotcakes, oat, juice and fruit). In some cases I didn't like what was in the buffet so I ate a few blocks from the Hotel.
In the main lobby you can find a small tour agency stand. Here you can buy trips to go on a Chiva, go to Baru and to the Rosario Islands. We paid COP 70000/each to go to Baru on bus and then to the Rosario Islands on boat (this included transport and lunch). Unfortunately conditions at sea did not allow the ship to sail, so they returned us some of the money. I have to recommend if you get a trip here ask for the name of the guide from the tour at the time you purchase your tour, we didn't do it and we didn't know which tour bus was ours (as many agencies have the same tour).
The hotel hast 2 pools (one in the 4th floor and the other one in the 15th floor). I have to say I preferred the one in the 4th floor, it’s bigger, you can find areas with sun and shadow; and the best part is the strong breeze that pases through this area.
The hotel hasn't got a private beach, however you just need to cross the street to find a beautiful beach with tons of space, beach tends, street-sellers and huge waves. I have to recommend: if you go to the beach be careful with the street-sellers: always ask ‘cuanto cuesta’ (Spanish for ‘How much does it costs’) before accepting anything… Sometimes they can charge you up to 3 times the price of the object/service and you will be in trouble if you have already used it.
The hotel has some negatives aspects: the main one is the weird smell on the elevators, simply its not ok and the hotel manager needs to do something about it. The front desk is a mess during rush hours (normally that would be 1pm - 3:30pm), I think they need more people working at the front dest and more space to attend al the clients they have. Additionally we had some trouble with the maids: in some cases 2 of them were very rude to us. All this things need to be revised by hotel management, but I could pass those this time.
I have to say that this placed fulfilled all my expectations, I really liked it although it’s not perfect (and that’s ok! You get for what you pay and this is the cheapest all-inclusive option with WIFI, pool, beach and with this amazing location).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Costa del Sol is located in Bocagrande, the best seafront place in Cartagena. We are close to the main tourist areas, just 10 minutes from the airport. We also have 6 meeting rooms with capacity up to 1000 people. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Ebookers, Expedia, Booking.com and 5viajes2012 S.L. so you can book your Hotel Costa Del Sol reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Costa Del Sol Cartagena
- Costa Del Sol Hotel