One of the reasons I love Cusco is that you can walk around the city countless times before she decides to reveal her secrets to you… The Palacio Del Inka Hotel Cusco is one of these secrets. This five star hotel occupies an entire block and the unobtrusive entrance on Romeritos street just opposite the Qoricancha Temple gives nothing away.
The hotel occupies the traditional house of the ‘four busts’, a colonial construction built upon the ruins of an Incan palace that was once part of the Qorikancha Temple. The Incan remains can still be seen in the lobby area and in the hotel bar where one entire wall is built with original Incan stonework. In the heart of this wall you can see the ‘Stone of 8 Angles’ made from a type of plutonic rock like Diorita Vede which is formed deep in the earth. This stone is the centre of this historical structure.
The Palacio del Inka Hotel is a museum hotel that inspires with its world-class art collection. They have a stunning collection of over 165 paintings, 60 of which are originals from the famous ‘Cusco School’ tradition that you can admire during your stay. Some elements of the mansion, such as the arch and the stairs, have remained intact since the Inca period. The hotel is part of the Marriott International Luxury Brand and has recently been recognized by “Travel + Leisure” as number 3 in their ranking of the ‘Top 10 city hotels in Central & South America”.
The rooms reflect a modern touch on colonial Cusco including gold leaf decorated bed heads, mirrors and traditional weavings re-worked in a modern style to decorate the walls. Deep red, plum and chocolate colours abound giving rooms that deep, lush feeling of luxury. Bathrooms come with a bathtub, shower and Gilchrist and Soames amenities.
We have stayed in rooms in both the main modern block as well as the colonial section of the hotel. On our most recent visit we stayed in a junior suite in the colonial section and while these rooms are slightly smaller than rooms in the modern block they definitely have more charm and original colonial features. For a splurge opt for the stunning ‘Kuychi’ suite which has magnificent frescoes painted on the ceiling by the same artist (Mario Castillo) who also painted the ceiling of the church in Andahuaylillas known as Latin America’s Sistine Chapel! For staying in these rooms you receive a certificate of stay for living the “millenary experience” in the hotel.
The public areas of the hotel have also been re-designed in the same style with a well achieved mix of old and new like the modern fuchsia pink and grey colours in the restaurant mixed with colonial style furniture and the lobby, a large, blue space designated as a ‘museum’ to showcase colonial pieces dating from the hotel owners’ private collection.
There are three reasons why we really like this hotel: 1) The staff is friendly, courteous and helpful in every respect from the moment you check-in to the moment you walk out the front door on your way home. 2) They have done an excellent job of preserving the charming Incan and colonial features of the building itself while ensuring a warm, comfortable and modern stay. 3) Their on-site tour operator VENTURIA can offer unique experiences like the Cusco City Tour and Machu Picchu Tour right from the lobby!
Best of Peru Travel Recommends:
- We recommend you head first to their fabulous sister resort Tambo del Inka which is in the Sacred Valley and is the perfect location to acclimatize to the altitude before spending a few days in Cusco.
- Ask for the pisco sour making class which was good fun and there is also a cheese and wine station available in the evenings if you want to try some Peruvian wines.
- If you want a spot of relaxation we highly recommend visiting the luxurious Palacio del Inka Spa. This is the largest spa in Cusco and the only hydrotherapy circuit in town! Great for relaxing those tired muscles after a day of sightseeing.