4.5
Very Good 442 Reviews
Jetsetter Verified
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 442 Reviews
Fabulous historic property with a Grand Salon
Reviewed 1 week ago

This small hotel is big on atmosphere and service. The location is great in the center of things, close to attractions and restaurants. East to walk, lots of street security. Breakfast room is very quaint with a good multi-course breakfast included. My absolute favorite part was the formal salon (sitting room) on the 2nd floor. I spent a couple of hours there enjoying its opulent decor and the soft background music with skillful lighting. Tip: We had a large sleeping room on the side away from the street, quiet and very nice. This is a good value. Front desk staff is a little unaware of museum hours or if the post office is open, etc. They made guesses but were wrong.

Lovely boutique hotel in centre of Cuenca
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We stayed here for one night on our last three days travelling back to Quito. The hotel is right in centre of town near to main square. Very quaint lovely decor and although our room was small it was clean and very nice.

Would definitely stay here again.

Decor wonderful.

In the heart of the historical town
Reviewed 1 month ago

I spent four nights in Santa Lucia whilst visiting Cuenca and it's surrounds. I had a lovely room. The hotel is gorgeous and everything is in walking distance for sightseeing. The staff are so helpful and go beyond to provide advice and information. The food is great too. I really enjoyed my stay here.

Clean, safe and convenient to historical district.
Reviewed 2 months ago

We enjoyed the atmosphere of the hotel which was once a private home. The staff was helpful and the hotel was clean. It was convenient for walking tourists and close to where the city bus tour departed.

Excellent stay, perfect hotel
Reviewed 2 months ago

Clean, 1 block from the cathedral, very good bed, good internet. It was a very good stay. We were there for 2 nights, check in was quick, our room was big, very comfortable bed. Breakfast which was included was served in the restaurant downstairs and was really good and many options. Would definitely return!