Belmond Hotel Monasterio | Cusco, Peru | Cusco’s most traditional luxury flagship hotel, located right beside the lively central square. A former monastery and national monument dating from 1592. This delightful Belmond hotel combines its centuries-old charm and ambience with luxury hotel service, inspired restaurants and boutique rooms and suites. This was my first stop and overnight during my visit to Cusco and Sacred Valley, such a magical destination, only matched by the beauty, peace and sophistication of this property with an unique blend of Spanish and Inca heritage. Follow my Instagram Peru Photo Gallery for more tips, photos and videos.
Hotel Monasterio has 126 rooms many of them with charming views of the city, the colourful rooftops of Cusco or the beautiful inner courtyards of the hotel. The decoration and furnishings combine the best of modern and traditional Spanish colonial style. Magnificent examples of religious art adorn the walls. The presence of the past is ever present, even as you are pampered by every luxury and modern comfort.
I was hosted at one of the three stunning Presidential Suites, spacious and elegant, all featuring a king-size bed, separate living room, a marble bathroom and my own private balcony overlooking at a beautiful Spanish style patio.
If you are concerned about the altitude, well I am not going to say you shouldn’t, since I did suffer from it during my visit, but the hotel is fully equipped for this matter. Coca Tea is served complimentary 24hs. at the hotel. Perhaps the most exciting aspect of the renovation of the Hotel Monasterio was the oxygen-enrichment of a number of our rooms. Cusco is situated at a height of 3,400 meters (11 000ft). With the rapid ascent by plane from Lima to Cusco there is no time for acclimatization and consequently guests are at risk of altitude sickness.
The Monastery was originally built in 1595 on the site of the palace of Inca Amaru Qhala. In 1598, it was founded as the Seminary of San Antonio Abad by the sixth Bishop of Cusco, Monsignor Antonio de la Raya, to train Catholic priests.
A beautiful Chapel was added later on, decorated in the indigenous Baroque style with gold-plated pictures frames and truly magnificent paintings by the best artists of the Cusquenian Art School (see below), depicting scenes from the life of San Antonio Abad.
The Hotel remains a national historical landmark, protected by the INC (National Institute of Culture) and has retained its characteristics and charm. It is a splendid model of the colonial Renaissance style, consisting of three sections in different levels. The heart of the Hotel is thecentral courtyard with its soft fountain and 300-year old Cedar tree surrounded by gardens and the famous stone cloisters.
Breakfasts every morning at the Illariy Restaurant is lovely, with its view onto the Main Patio and intimate ambiance, Restaurant Illariy will charm you with its unique atmosphere and delicious breakfasts and light Mediterranean lunches, created by their executive chef.
Sample a traditional Coca Sour or Pisco Sour in the elegant and colonial Lobby Bar which has been decorated with style and tranquility in mind.
During the day the Lobby Bar is a restful space. Sip on a comforting cup of coca tea and relax as you acclimatise to the high altitude.
In the evening, the Lobby Bar is an ideal place for a pre-dinner drink. Enjoy delicious canapés and sink in front of the roaring log fire as you reflect on another memorable day in Cusco. In my case, tasting an excellent Monasterio version of my favorite drink, a filthy Vodka Martini, next to the fireplace.
Without any doubts, together with its sister property Palacio Nazarenas, both Belmond properties in Cusco, are the place to stay, relax and indulge your senses. Carlos Melia Luxury Travel Curator – www.carlosmelia.com
(*) To book your own travel experience, do not hesitate to contact me either by email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone # 917.754.5515. Also check our scheduled Travel Groups. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of LGTNetwork, VIRTUOSO, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network. www.carlosmelia.com