As part of our visit to Peru, our family of 4 stayed 3 nights at the Tambo del Inka in Urubamba Peru. We originally booked 2 rooms at 12k SPG points per night each. Considering these rooms can go for about $500-$700 USD a night, 12k SPG points is a great deal. (Besides staying at hotels to obtain points, SPG has credit card bonus’ from 25k to 35k points throughout the year. You can open up one credit card and about 3 months later have enough points to stay here for 3 nights.)
I contacted them about a month beforehand to make sure we had connecting rooms. They said they were sold out during our stay and it was unlikely we could get connecting rooms because they only have like 7 of them. The hotel mentioned the rooms have 2 queen beds and that they could provide a rollaway bed for guests 12 and under at no charge. So we opted to cancel our second room, which ended up being a great decision.
The hotel has a on site tour company. We were to arrive in Cusco at about 11am and arranged a 4 hour tour/transportation to the hotel through them. It was about $200USD total, but was great with a person waiting at baggage claim with our name on a sign, who led us to a large van with our guide and driver who took us through Cusco, Ruins of Moray, and Salt Mines of Moras before ending at our hotel right at checkin time. (we also booked our Machu Picchu tour through this company. More on that in an upcoming post)
Check in was quick and they sit you down on a couch to relax a lil while they go over all the information. As an SPG Gold member we were to receive 10% off food, and a special breakfast price of $15USD per person (more on that below as out total breakfast bill ended up being about $15 total). As well as a coupon for 2 welcome drinks at their bar or restaurant.
Some of the common areas which double as the check in area.
Our room was larger than what I was expecting for a standard room. As I mentioned the double beds were actually queen beds, and a 3rd bed fit in there with plenty of room. There was a large walk-in closet with a safe and plenty of storage. The bathroom was large with a separate tub and shower head, as well as a separate toilet.
The room was pretty quiet and while the view wasn’t amazing, it was nice and peaceful. They had a mini-bar but you could still fit a few bottles of water in there. They did give us 4 free bottles of water per day. They also had turn down service with chocolates at night. The TV was easy to use and you were able to get English or Spanish on most of the channels. There was not a lot of outlets in the room so when charging our electronics we were always searching for one.
The pool and spa area was very nice but a lil too fancy for kids. Our kids liked it but got bored pretty quick. They also had a indoor hot tub, but the water wasn’t that hot. Along with several steam rooms. There was a very nice hot tub/aromatherapy section, but you had to pay for that. The workout room was in the spa area. It was larger than I was expecting for the size of the hotel, with several machines, free weights, and plenty of room to just do whatever you want.
The food here had some positive and negatives. The restaurant was the same for dinner and for breakfast. It was very nice with white tablecloths and cloth napkins. Our dinner there one night was nothing special, yet fairly expensive. In the bar and the restaurant Pisco Sours were 38 soles. In town we could find them at most places for 15 soles, and even some places had them 2 for 15 soles. We did use our coupon here though and they were pretty darn good.
The breakfast was great though. Lots of options as you can see below. It was interesting that while they told us it was $15 per adult, our bill didn’t reflect that. They didn’t charge any of us for the first 2 days. On the last day, we told them that our daughter didn’t want the buffet and only wanted a bowl of cereal. While it took a while to explain this to them, eventually they figured it out. Unfortunately they brought the fruit loops out with warm milk. (this happened more than one time in South America so beware) We just got some off the buffet then and made sure to use cold milk. They charged my son like $9USD for the buffet and my daughter like $5USD for the fruit loops, but they didn’t charge the adults anything.
One dinner we decided to eat in the bar area. It was pretty crowded so we found some a small table in the room off of the main bar that had the pool table and TV (with lots of people watching the Rockets vs Warriors game.) We ordered food and drinks and after 20 minutes our drinks never came out. I went back up to the bar and they said its coming soon. Another 10 minutes went by and a manager came out apologizing and brought us 2 lemonades and 2 Pisco sours at no cost.
It’s an easy walk to town though where food is much cheaper. We ate at one of the recommended restaurants from the hotel called Tres Kerros. While not as cheap as some of the street food, it was very good and considerably cheaper than the hotel.
There were a few reasons we picked this hotel rather than its sister property in Cusco. One is the altitude is lower here than in Cusco. While we may have a harder time going up steps than back home, we never got any altitude sickness. The second reason is the train station on site. Yes, on property- its a lil hidden but a 5 minute walk from the lobby. We had limited time in Peru and decided to do a 1 day trip to Machu Picchu. If you stay in other places most tours start at like 330am and you eventually end up on a train in Ollantaytambo to take you to Aquas Calientes. However there is a train station on site and we were able to get a lil more sleep to make a 620AM train. Breakfast opens at 530 so its perfect to eat breakfast then hop on the train. I did see some people ask for foil and they wrapped some breads up to go as well. Either for breakfast or to have a small lunch later. The train was empty at first when it left the hotel in Urubamba and then it got completely filled up at its only stop in Ollantaytambo.
The hotel is gated so they didn’t have a lot of taxis available on site. Uber was around, but whenever I tried to find one, there would not be any in the area. So you have to go through the concierge for a taxi and it seemed more expensive than getting one of the street. Not major, but a few extra dollars. We asked for a taxi to get us back to the airport and they said it would be $60USD. I did a lil research and asked them why its so expensive cause it sounds like it should only be about $35. She got on her computer and said well its because we are in the Hotel’s Nissan Armada. (which I dont think we would have been until I questioned it) We kept it since the roads aren’t the greatest and this would be more comfortable than the 90 minute ride in a small taxi.
There was a wedding going on one night. It seemed loud from the main lobby, but luckily we were on the opposite side and never heard it. Overall this is a great deal to stay on SPG points. There are also often deals from AMEX hotel collection for like 3rd night free. I would stay here again in a heartbeat.
Just a few last pictures from around the hotel grounds.