Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena
What We Love
- Fernando Botero’s giant bronze nude nestled in the lush vegetation of the colonial patio
- An expansive swimming pool that makes it difficult to leave the hotel
- Strawberries and champagne in the hot tub, with a view of the sun sinking into the Caribbean
What To Know
- Classic rooms are not very big, but connecting rooms can be arranged for families
- Cartagena’s beaches are disappointing. For the idyllic Caribbean beach experience you will need to rent a yacht and head to the Rosario Islands
- Bathrooms in the classic rooms are for pint-size guests; for a good soak you will need a suite
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Contemporary colonial chic. Saintly Spanish 17th-century architecture has been given a stylish refit, modern designer touches and a gilded flourish from Colombia’s greatest artists. From Olga de Amaral’s shimmering tapestry painted in gold leaf at the entrance, Fernando Botero’s flirtatious, chubby bronze on the patio, and elegant designer linen threads by Lina Cantillo for the attentive staff, this is a hotel that prides itself on attention to detail from top to toe.
Bed and Bath
Most of the hotel’s 139 guestrooms and suites flank the swimming pool, which dominates the 20th-century Republican wing of the property. Superior rooms on upper levels, nestled under the whitewashed eaves, offer extra headroom and views of the Caribbean. Suites embellished with art by Colombian artists Ana Mercedes Hoyos and Fernando Botero have helped this colonial gem become Sofitel’s fourth Legend property.
The modern-day call to prayer in this former convent means sundowners and Cuban Son in El Coro Lounge Bar, a faux library big on local art exhibitions and killer cocktails. The “librarians” shake a mean mojito into the mix before guests move on to the hotel’s maximalist fine dining restaurant, 1621, which borrows the nocturnal charm of the hotel’s spectacular colonial courtyard for romantic trysts. Reward yourself after a day exploring the city’s architectural charms, and evenings soaking up the nightlife, with a couple of hours of detox at the hotel’s Turkish hammam.
In the Area
To get the lowdown on Cartagena’s nocturnal attractions, there’s Kendrick’s Gin sundowners at the ultra-friendly upstairs bar, El Balcon. Eat sushi at Tabetai and the crayfish and king prawn risotto at Don Juan. If you’re looking to party with a beautiful crowd, the hip hangout La Movida works wonders on weekends. Loved ones left at home will love you even more if you bring home some green fire — Colombian emeralds — from Lucy Jewelry or the plundered treasure on display at Casa Chiqui. Pamper your cultural whims with a visit to NH Galeria.
How to Get There
We stayed for 5 days in November. Lovely hotel, well positioned in the old town. Friendly and helpful staff. Very comfortable room overlooking the fabulous pool. Note that if you are visiting I strongly recommend a pool-view room. We ate one night in the “fine dining” restaurant 1621 (very good). Lunch was in the pool bar and fine, reasonable value, as were the drinks. Used the gym most days, maybe a little on the small side for a hotel this size but well equipped. Overall an excellent stay and not sure how anyone would rate below 4 stars, it was a solid 5 stars for us.
I want to start saying the hotel is nice and very well located. Buildingits around 400 years old and served in history through variety of public and private organizations. So lot of history there. Having said this for the rate of rooms you can stay in a much better hotel in the city.
On my visit we got a room facing on one side to the only pool the hotel has, kids playing from early morning adding this to the noise coming from the street makes it impossible to sleep. Rooms are small , same as bathroom, no bathtub at least on my room. Breaksfast is ok, at 10 am they start telling you they are going to get ready for lunch so kitchen will close soon. On our second day AC broke. They wanted to bring a fan, but for tha mount of money I was paying this was no good deal. I checked out, they refund part of the money and I moved to Hyatt regency. Ror same money I had a great room.
This property, which at one time was a convert , is located within the walls of the old city in Cartagena. It is an excellent location from which to tour the old city. The restaurants are excellent and the internal courtyard and pool are are spacious and beautiful. The staff is very friendly.
true, the place is beautiful, an ancient convent that has some beautiful remains especially the patio. But anyone can go there for a cup of tea or lunch and enjoy the building.
Beyond that, little else. The rooms are clean but average, the food is not something to write home about, including the gastro restaurant. Shame, but with a little twist in food and service, this place could have a lot of charm. Absent this, there a probably more charming hotels in the historical city of Cartagena...
Over a year ago, I booked two rooms/ suites for a total of 5 nights for an upcoming stay in December. I am spending over $600 per room per night, totaling over $7,500.00. Recently a friend of mine decided to join the trip last minute. I figured this should be no problem to add him to the reservation since the rooms I booked were on average 400 sq ft. each. I called the hotel to inform them of the additional guest and asked how much it would cost to add a person to the reservation. I didn't need a cot or an extra bed as this person would be sharing a bed with me. The hotel responded and said these rooms do not allow more than 2 people per room but they would make an exception for $200 per night. This is absurd to me. For a "luxury" hotel, you would think they would be a bit more accommodating. I am not trying to squeeze 5 people into a standard room. I am asking to add one friend to a suite. Had I known this hotel would be so inflexible with its customer service, I would have booked elsewhere. Coming from the hospitality industry, I know that part of the luxury experience is service and so far, I am incredible disappointed with this hotel.