4.5
Very Good 485 Reviews
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This Hotel meets our standards
Our editors have been here and it has met our standards

What We Love

  • A central location close to the old cathedral and just one block from the main plaza
  • Stunning woodwork on the balconies framing the central courtyard and throughout the hotel
  • A choice of three restaurants — an all-Italian spot, a traditional Ecuadorian and one that plays as a glam lounge bar
  • A world away from cookie-cutter; rooms are all individually designed and vary in size and layout

What To Know

  • The city sits 8,400 feet above sea level, though altitude sickness is less common than in Quito
  • Most of the guestrooms face the central courtyard, so expect some noise from diners at Trattoria Novecento
  • There are no international flights to Cuenca, but from Quito it’s just a short, inexpensive hop by air
  • Rooms on the first floor get far less light and may get a little extra noise from the courtyard Trattoria Novecento restaurant
  • Cuenca is Ecuador’s third-largest city, surrounded by mountains on all sides

Amenities

  •  Babysitting
  •  Bar
  •  Free WiFi
  •  Handicap Accessible
  •  Kids Club
  •  Parking On Site
  •  Restaurant
  •  Spa
Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.
Boutique Business City Exterior Romantic building property Town restaurant

Overview

The Review

Although Cuenca doesn’t have any major historical attractions, the way Quito does, or heavily visited natural wonders like the Galapagos, many consider this their favorite Ecuadorian city. It’s just downright charming. The old city is blossoming with culture and buzzed-about restaurants, and there are cafés dotted on every corner of the colonial center. Hotel Santa Lucia is a natural base for exploring the city’s ins and outs, as well as something of an attraction in its own right, housed, as it is, in a 150-year-old building just a block from the central plaza.

{“type”:”img-inline”,”src”:”/static/images/product/properties/2806/prop-88588-1336670461-full.jpg”,”width”:”275″,”caption”:”Trattoria Novecento serves an all-Italian menu in the light-filled central courtyard.”}The first upscale colonial-style hotel in Cuenca, the Santa Lucia has been in operation since 2001, when the original owners sold the property after more than a century in the same family. Today the fruits of a painstaking, sensitive renovation are on show, from the colorful public spaces to the simply dressed guestrooms.

Anchored by a traditional tile courtyard topped with skylights, the rooms are a mishmash of shapes and sizes, which demonstrates the new owner’s commitment to the original design. The decor continues the historic theme, going with gold-plated mirror frames and antique wooden furniture, but there are modern, largely hidden, comforts as well, including digital safes, minibars and plasma TVs. The bathrooms have a contemporary look, in white marble with primo bath products.

The current owners, the Vintimillas, are restaurateurs, so it’s little surprise to find two stellar restaurants at the Santa Lucia. Using the courtyard as an atmospheric dining room, Trattoria Novecento serves an all-Italian menu, plus a 300-bottle wine list, while streetside Inti is a more casual spot for classic Ecuadorian fare. There’s also Moshi Moshi, a decadent lounge bad (think purple velvet, leopard-print tiles and colorful cocktails) that’s somewhat unique in this traditional city. Stop in for the popular happy hour, then get an early night and rise in time to explore Cuenca’s UNESCO-listed historic center before the crowds arrive.

How to Get There

Hotel Boutique Santa Lucia
Antonio Borrero 8 44 Y Sucre
Cuenca, 010150 Ecuador

Reviews

4.5 Very Good 485 Reviews
Comfortable in the centre of Cuenca
Reviewed 3 days ago

The hotel has a perfect location for exploring the city for anyone coming to visit - only one block from the main square. The entrance is very beautiful with an open courtyard.
The hotel staff were friendly but some had limited English.
We stayed in a twin room which was very spacious and comfortable. The bathroom was nice but i wish the bath/shower was just a shower as the bath didn’t even work.
An added bonus was the lovely restaurant which is in the main courtyard - the food was really good and the courtyard is beautiful at night.

Beautiful colonial hotel in beautiful Cuenca.
Reviewed 1 month ago

We enjoyed two nights here in room 212.

A beautifully decorated room with most everything you could wish. Only negative was there was no tea and coffee facilities within the room, but a station is available downstairs until 9pm ( if I remember correctly) for you to sit and relax and enjoy a drink.
We had a mezzanine area to our room with another bed though we didn't need it. Not sure why our agent booked this , but perhaps it was because it gave us generally a larger room, as ours was certainly that.

We overlooked the road and a car park, but that was not an issue. A bit of noise but not too bad. We had a very large window with wooden shutters. Closing the shutters in the evening helped block any outside noise. I believe the courtyard rooms only have an internal window, so I am glad we had the room with an exterior window.

We had a nice welcome and the young lady on reception was very helpful and spoke superb English.

Breakfast was very good. Buffet style for the cereals, juices, yoghurts etc then waiter service for the cooked element.

We didn't have dinner in the hotel so cannot comment on that. The courtyard area housing the main restaurant is very pretty and quite magical when lit up of an evening. On our second evening we had cocktails in the bar during their happy hour(s) The bar was very busy with locals, which made for a good atmosphere.

If you like Italian try the pizza place across the road. Very inexpensive too which was a bonus. Really tasty pizzas. Particularly good if you don't want to sit down for a more lengthy formal meal.

Cuenca is a beautiful city and from the Santa Lucia everything is within walking distance.

Very convenient and characterful hotel
Reviewed 1 month ago

This hotel was a very well situated for the old town. The staff were incredibly helpful and friendly. The rooms were clean and comfortable. Some of the facilities are not quite up to its star rating. There is also some discrepancy between some of the information available online re hours of service for room service and the hotel bar. I would highly recommend taking coffee and tea making gear with you, as this is not available, especially if you are a bit jet lagged and wake up at odd hours! The rooms and dining area in the courtyard are also a bit cold. However, having said all that, I would not swap the atmosphere of this hotel for a more impersonal hotel chain.

Lovely hotel in good location
Reviewed 1 month ago

The hotel is in a lovely building near the central square in Cuenca. Staff are exceptionally friendly and helpful and breakfast was very good following both our stays.

The first night we had a room on the top floor, there is no lift so did feel for the staff carrying our suitcases up! Room was lovely and very quiet. On our return a week later we had a room overlooking the courtyard, which was very nice but I preferred the the first room we had. Plus the courtyard rooms have no natural light (window overlooks the internal courtyard) and can be noisy until the restaurant is closed for the evening.

Great Colonial style Hotel in great area
Reviewed 4 months ago

This hotel is not only unique but rates 5 star in our book. We checked in today, the staff are friendly you are greeted with a cocktail and everything is explained about your stay. It is colonial style with an upstairs that goes round the second floor with a restaurant in the Centre. It has a drawing room to relax in and lovely antiques everywhere you look. It would be hard to rate this hotel anything but excellent. We are on the 2 nd floor and have a 2 level floor with an additional beds upstairs. We haven’t eaten here but I can’t imagine it wont be good. We are in room 211. Yes it faces the street and there is street noise. No big deal. We are World travellers and this this is a lovely spot, thank you staff.(