Top Boutique Hotels in Colombia
Read our pick of the most beautiful resorts in Colombia and get ready to join us on an exciting journey of discovery
It’s that time of the year: days are starting to get shorter, evenings carry a chilly breeze with them and the first snow has started to fall. To fight the dread winter blues, we’ve compiled a list of the most beautiful, luxurious boutique hotels in Colombia, to bring some of those Caribbean vibes to your homes for a little longer.
Whether you’re planning your winter getaway, or just need some inspiration to carry through the cold and season ahead of us, read on to indulge in the best Colombia has to offer - and of course, don’t forget to head to our Colombian Collection after!
@lasislasbaru | https://www.lasislas.com.co/
Just south of Cartágena lies the lush island of Barú, surrounded by a small archipelago of islets where the sand is the whitest and the water the most crystalline you’ve ever seen. Hidden among the exuberant tropical vegetation of the island, Hotel Las Islas counts 55 bungalows, seven between restaurants and bars, a water sports center, a spa and gym, an observatory, and enough activities to keep you occupied for a month’s stay or more.
Named like the fifty-five islands of Colombia, the bungalows are either on sea level with direct access to the beach or up in the treetops enjoying 360-degree views of the surrounding Parque Nacional Natural Corales del Rosario y San Bernardo. Featuring hammocks, private Jacuzzi tubs, viewing decks, and gorgeous décor filled with local crafts, the bungalow will become your private corner of paradise. Dine under the shade of a thatched umbrella on your private deck as you gaze out over the sea or the forest, enjoy a leisurely soak in your Jacuzzi or a swim in your private pool, before stretching out on your plush pillowtop bed and ordering room service after an eventful day in paradise.
The restaurants and bars offer exquisite dining options to satisfy every appetite. Drawing upon the natural bounty of the sea, the kitchen team creates fresh, seasonal cuisine, with an emphasis on local produce, which you can enjoy in total relaxation at Las Guacas restaurant, surrounded by orchids and bountiful vegetation. Choose between sampling ceviche at Tía Coco restaurant or satisfy your sweet tooth with ice cream at Los Mangos, before heading for a drink at Las Islas Bar, from where you can enjoy breathtaking views of the Caribbean coast.
When you are maxed out on sun lounging and tasting delicious food and cocktails, we strongly suggest a trip to Spa Niña Daniela, located right on the beachfront and providing a haven of tranquility within the breathtaking beauty of the surroundings. Their full menu of soothing treatments includes various kinds of massages, a thalassotherapy-inspired body wrap, a Turkish bath and sauna, and much more.
Looking beyond luxury and mindful of the local territory and population, Hotel Las Islas has been championing sustainable tourism in the area since the very beginning. The resort was built without cutting a single tree and just the building process in 2017 provided jobs and secure income to hundreds of local families.
The management also pioneered a water supply system through the desalination of brackish water captured through beach wells within the hotel grounds, which also help the local population in times of drought. Through the Malpelo Foundation, Las Islas is actively involved in the preservation of the coral reef of the Natural Park Corales del Rosario, teaching tourists how to make the most of their stay while still protecting the sea and the environment at large.
@onesantuario | https://santuario.one/en
Located on the peaceful shores of Río Palomino, a stream of crystalline water born in the snowy peaks of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta that flows into the Caribbean Sea a few kilometers from the reserve, One Santuario Hotel is one of those places that immediately feel like home.
The hotel started with a handful of structures about 12 years ago when AK bought the land One Santuario now occupies to help preserve the sacred mountains of the Sierra, building a space that over the course of the years has evolved into an earthly paradise.
With 80 hectares of protected land and a strong connection to the local indigenous communities, a stay at One Sanctuario will take you on a wholesome journey of regeneration. The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is one of the most enchanting, diverse mountain ranges in South America, where ancestral cultures still live in full harmony with the surrounding fauna and flora.
Six round thatched bungalows with high rooves and palm-weaved furniture are dotted around the lush tropical gardens, which open out into the white shores of the Palomino River, where whole afternoons can easily go by watching the lazy waters of the river flowing to the ocean not far away.
Enjoy the feeling of total communion with Mother Earth during one of their organized retreats, where you will be able to disconnect your body and reconnect with your spirit, inhabiting this natural sanctuary to improve and enhance your mental one. Or if you are there for a short while only, you can indulge in one of their many open-air reading areas, hot tubs, or natural lookouts, lulled by the song of tens of different bird species and the incessant flowing of mountain rivers.
In their open kitchen, the team develops recipes made from native ingredients and vegetables that grow in their own orchard, while a network of local suppliers source fish, meat, coffee, cocoa, vegetables, and tropical fruits directly from the sea and the countryside to the table.
Once you are ready to venture out, local guides will take you on hikes to discover the amazing world hidden in the Sierra Nevada mountain jungle, walking the ancestral paths that Mother Earth forged for us over centuries and that you, as a guest of One Sanctuario, will become the temporary guardian of.
Far from just being a luxurious place though, One Sanctuario is also a leader in the preservation of indigenous cultures. Strong believers in the value of sharing knowledge through the connection between artists, managers, and local leaders, AK and his partner Leyla started the One Sanctuario Foundation to work for the social, environmental, and cultural development of the indigenous communities native to the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta region and the Caribbean coast.
Today the foundation works with communities in San Basilio de Palenque and Palomino to preserve their cultural heritage and raise awareness around the issues native communities face today.
Selina Bogotá - La Candelaria & Parque de la 93
@selina | https://www.selina.com/es/colombia/la-candelaria-bogota/ & https://www.selina.com/es/colombia/bogota-parque-de-la-93/
For a more urban taste of Colombia, we’re taking you to the capital Bogotá, where the international hotel chain Selina has two amazing, urban-chic locations that are great starting points to explore the city, as well as being perfect for longer-term travelers or digital nomads.
Located in the historic area of Bogotá, Selina La Candelaria radiates history and culinary culture. The rooms, bar, library, and central courtyard are all built and furnished in keeping with the surrounding area, which features cobble streets and neo-colonial buildings. Everywhere exposed brickwork is complemented by leather furniture, wrought iron details, wooden floors, and a vast array of artisanal accents that contribute to immersing you in the local culture and vibes. From the lighting to soft furnishings such as cushions and sofas, to macrame or pompom-rich wall hangings, every detail is curated in both the rooms and the common areas to give guests the best possible experience.
Upon waking up, you will be able to appreciate the view of the Andes mountains and Bogotá’s neo-colonial architecture, before heading out to explore the surrounding cobbled streets. Don’t forget to make a quick stop at their in-house cafe, where you will enjoy the best Colombian coffee and yucca bread, essentials to start your day of historical exploration right.
Check out the stunning Plaza de Bolívar, the Catedral Primada, the Gold Museum, and the Lievano Palace, or immerse yourself in the Colón Theater to find out more about Colombian art and literature. Don’t forget as well to explore the Gabriel García Márquez cultural center, where you will find artists and workshops to explore the varied Colombian artisanal tradition.
When you’re maxed out on art and history, you can head back to La Candelaria and refresh yourself with the excellent South American-inspired restaurant or, for the more budget travelers, prepare your own meal in the communal kitchen. The evenings and weekends at La Candelaria are all about entertainment, with live music, DJs at the bar, and regular screenings in the movie theater. Or else relax in the library and take a chance to meet fellow travelers in the funky industrial chich bar.
If you’re more of a partygoer and enjoy nightlife more than historical buildings, Selina Bogotá Parque 93 is the place for you. Located just two blocks from Parque de la 93, a famous center for nightlife in the district of Chapinero where clubs, restaurants, shops, and art & design galleries abound, the hotel includes a widely equipped co-working space, a wellness center, a cinema, a library, and a cocktail bar.
The restaurant, which features beautiful wooden furniture, handmade rugs, pastel-toned poufs and cushions, and bamboo hanging chairs, offers a healthy menu with regional and international dishes, while in the evenings the cocktail bar is rife with young travelers and a hefty dose of digital nomads.
If you’re a solo traveler and keen to meet new people, join one of their tours to the Salt Cathedral, Cerro Monserrate, Virrey station, and other landmarks in the area, and if you’re lucky enough to stay over the weekend, don’t miss a visit to the Usaquén market, filled with scrumptious food stalls and gorgeous artisan workshops.
Blue Apple Beach Hotel
@blueapplebeach | https://www.blueapplebeach.com/
In the words of Founder and Owner Portia, “A successful day at the beach comes down to three things: good food, fun music, and decent rosé.” It’s fair to say Blue Apple Beach Hotel has all of that - and then some.
Opened in 2016 as a boutique hotel on the Isla Tierra Bomba just off the coast of Cartágena, Blue Apple is geographically - as well as metaphorically - a world apart. Eager to share their journey to becoming a fully certified eco-hotel with their guests, the staff will offer any guest who braves the public transport - a boat and a mototaxi - a free cocktail upon arrival.
When you set foot in Blue Apple, you will instantly feel a strong sense of communion with the surrounding nature and community, one which owner Portia is very keen to maintain. The hotel is on its way to zero waste, having pioneered the local waste management system and providing the only glass recycling facility on the island.
The whole management and all of the collaborators - guides, chefs, facilitators, etc. - are from local and underrepresented communities ranging from BIPOC to LGBTQ+, making sure everyone in the staff feel welcomed, appreciated, and nurtured. The result is a guest experience that goes well beyond the enchantment of the location and facilities, to become a truly transformational stay where you will feel more like part of a family than a guest at a hotel.
On any given day you might roam from your cabaña (if you can be persuaded to leave the plunge pool!) to the white sandy beaches where sunbeds, SUP boards, beach volley, and yoga await you. You could then visit the hotel grounds with the recycling center, kitchen garden, carpentry, and livestock areas, which are always open for exploration and provide a glimpse into how the magic is made.
The evenings are a soulful mix of live music, resident DJs, cocktail classes, Zumba sessions, pizza making in the garden, outdoor cinema, and beach dinners, all of which contribute to the blend of funk and glamor that will shape your nights.
When it comes to food, the attention to the environment and supporting local businesses become even more paramount. Blue Apple’s original executive chef Silvestre, a Colombian born in Ibiza, has whipped up a menu filled with all the freshest, most local ingredients, many of which - meat, fruit, and vegetables - are grown or reared on the premises. Anything Silvestre’s team doesn’t make themselves is sourced from local trusted producers, while Blue Apple’s dedicated supply chain manager makes sure that only the best produce gets into the hotel.
If you can bear leaving this corner of heaven, Isla Tierra Bomba offers a host of activities for the sporty and cultural traveler alike. From PADI-certified diving courses with local school Paradiso Dive to moto-taxi or horseback tours of the islands to get a taste of the culture and village life, we promise you there won’t be a minute of boredom.
A place for the young at heart, who want to enjoy life without causing harm to others or to the world around us, Blue Apple Beach Hotel is an unmissable stop in Colombia for a stay filled with music, joy, and relaxation in equal parts.
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