If you know me, you know that I like a certain caliber of accommodation when I travel if I’m not staying with acquaintances. The Hotel Intercontinental satisfied that requirement.
The Cartagena hotel is part of InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), which owns, in addition to its namesake, such chains as Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza, among others.
The hotel itself was gorgeous architecturally. I was surprised at how much I liked the aesthetic; very modern and clean. I had to take an elevator from the ground level to reach the actual lobby, but there were plenty of helpful porters to point me in the right direction. In the lobby was access to the restaurant, a business center, and access to the pool area (with breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea!). The front desk staff was very friendly, and actually spoke decent English. I tried to communicate my needs in Spanish as I try to respect the culture I’m immersing myself in, but it was awfully broken, and they happily switched for my benefit. After I checked in, I took the elevators, which provided a very smooth ride, up to my room on the 22nd floor.
I stayed in a standard two double bed room. My original room was supposed to include a king-sized bed, but I was told that room was not ready, and I was given the option of a double bed room. I gladly accepted the change as I was exhausted from my day of travel. I don’t regret the decision. The copious natural light, and the excellent view of Bocagrande from the 22nd floor provided me with a second wind, and prompted me to delay my nap to explore Cartagena immediately. The blue and white theme of the room was appropriate, given the stark white buildings of Bocagrande and accompanying ocean view. There were black out curtains and soundproof windows, which were very welcome at night. The closets provided plenty of space, a more-than-adequate ceiling-length mirror, two comfy plush couches, and a desk where I filmed my daily journals and wrote blog notes in the evenings.
The bathroom was very modern and made entirely of marble and glass with a large mirror over the sink. A stunning stainless-steel rainfall shower completed the look, but it took me a few minutes to figure out how it worked because of the odd shower-knob, which controlled both water intensity and temperature. Once I had the hang of it, I was in heaven; I really need one of those in my bathroom.
I didn’t find out what the bed and comforters were made of, but they were comfortable and I slept better in that hotel room than I sleep at home.
The only downside to the the room were the flickering lights in the bathroom, the cheap toilet seat that shifted a lot, and the television that did not work. I had the various streaming services available on my Galaxy Note, so the lack of TV wasn’t an issue.
Concierge and room service are always welcome. I didn’t really use the concierge, but room service ended up being ridiculously cheap given the very favorable exchange rate between the dollar and the Colombian Peso.
The wifi was excellent, and I had a good signal throughout the hotel without any interrupted service during my stay.
I did not have a chance to swim, but I did sit poolside to have wine while I admired the views.
As someone who loves to eat, the free continental breakfast was a great way to start my days. It went above and beyond something you would find in a normal hotel. I won’t detail the menu, but it was local and fresh with some items I’ve never seen in the United States.
Overall, my stay at the Hotel Intercontinental very was positive, and I will absolutely stay again.