Corrugated City

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Where to stay in Valparaiso

So there are a lot of posts about buildings to see and restaurants to visit on this blog. But where should you stay?

Here's a quick run down of possibilities...

For the ricky ricones out there then i'd suggest one of the following 3 boutique hotels:

-The Hotel Gervasoni. This hotel is probably one of the best private renovation jobs i've seen anywhere and is really well positioned at the end of the Paseo Gervasoni, next to the Lukas museum and the top of the Ascensor Turri/Concepcion all on Cerro Concepcion. The owners spent a small fortune restoring the old mansion and did a hell of a job. Original details were delicately recovered and pricey antiques dot the place alongside more modern touches. It has a great terrace with views of the port and bay for drinks (appalling slow service) and a restaurant below with some seriously good wines in the cellar. You can read my none-too-flattering review of the restaurant here. Also on the downside, they have a ridiculous booking system that has made us look elsewhere for friends and clients on two separate occasions.

And another edit to this post: The service for drinks or food on the terrace is nothing less than appalling. Three times I've been there with friends or clients and on every occasion it's taken absurd amounts of time to get our orders. The last time, it took them 40 minutes to bring a beer, a whisky, a coffee and a glass of champagne. And when it did arrive, the waiter spilled the champagne and took 10 minutes to bring another. Terribly, terribly shoddy. Management really needs to get a hold on things quickly or the place is going to get a reputation as bad as the Brighton.

A double costs around 85,000 pesos (us$160) a night.

-The Manoir Atkinson is around the corner at the end of Paseo Atkinson. Rooms are about the same price. The roof terrace in the Atkinson is really cool.

-Another great option is the Zero Hotel on Cerro Alegre. This place, on Valpo's most expensive street-Lautauro Rosas-opened in mid 2007. The house has been beautifully restored and decorated (not in the same original style like the Gervasoni though) and the views of the city and bay are pretty bleeding amazing. It has a jacuzzi on the terrace. And you can see my house. We know the management there and they run a really tight ship. Mightily impressive. Quite expensive as well for Valpo and Chile as a whole at around 140,000 pesos (us$270) a night for one of the 4 suites with views. Quite possibly worth it.

-At the top end is the Casa Higueras on Higueras, Cerro Alegre just up from the Ascensor Peral which also has a restaurant (i haven't been yet). Prices range from 140-180,000 pesos. The terrace is really cool and there's a swimming pool as well. Along with the Zero, it has a very good reputation amongst international travellers.


Mid-range for the wannabe rich or sensible spenders:

-The Hotel Ultramar is slightly cheaper than the aforementioned hotels. It's a bit further out of the way of all the fun, high up on Cerro Carcel but the views are simply spectacular and the hotel is really well run. From 30,000 to 90,000 pesos a room.

-Allegretto just scrapes in at mid-range. Just opened and run by the owner of the Allegretto Pizza place i reviewed a while ago, i haven't actually seen the inside of the place but it looks ok from the photos. 30,000 pesos a double and they have a dorm as well.

Low-range for people who think spending a fortune on accommodation is folly:

-There are a couple of hostels on Cerro Concepcion. The first is Hostal Pilcomayo on the corner of Pilcomayo and Templeman and the other is Casa Aventura which is on the corner of Urriola and Pasaje Galvez. No idea what they charge but i expect it'd be on the range of 5-8000 pesos per person for a dorm bed. You could also try the Hostal Morgan.

There are a few more hotels and many b&b's around, especially on Cerros Alegre and Concepcion. Those mentioned are just the ones that come to mind and/or that i've personally visited. I'll keep adding to this post as i remember and see more.

Hotels in Valparaiso Chile
Accommodation in Valparaiso Chile

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hiya - Fab Blog. My friends and I are coming to Valpo for New Year. Can you recommend any 'cheaper' hotels for us? Cheers Jo

Matt said...

hi jo, your best bet is probably casaventura or hostal pilcomayo. everywhere in valpo at least doubles (usually trebles) their prices for NY and you need to book by october at the latest...then you need to reconfirm every week from the end of november to make sure they don't 'forget' your reservation...

Anonymous said...

Many thanks for this... will get on it now! Cheers Jo

Mike said...

How about hostal Morgan or hostal portabello?
Any experience good or bad?

Matt said...

hi mike...honestly, i don't know anything about either one of them so i can't comment unfortunately...

lara said...

Hey Matt,

I just discovered your blog and am in the process of digesting all of the extremely helpful info you've shared. My boyfriend and I are volunteering in Vina del Mar and would like to leave our living accommodation. (Thin walls, screaming children, a family of snorers...) Any information you could give me on renting a one bedroom in either Vina or Valpo would be MUCH appreciated. Our Spanish is still on the beginners level, making the search particularly difficult. Thanks so much!

Matt said...

hi lara, it depends on how much you want to spend and how long you want to rent for. short term furnished rents are obviously more expensive. you could try portalinmobiliario.com (all in Spanish), the newspaper as well might have listings. The problem is that it's now high season which means that prices are at least double what they would usually be. It might be cheaper over here in Valpo. Let me know your budget and i'll see if i know of anything.

lara said...

Hey Matt,

Thanks for your quick response. I´m going through the site now and will watch out for this sunday´s classifieds. Our budget is, well, minimal to say the least. We´re volunteering here in Vina and will be absorbing the costs of moving out of our place. We´d like to pay no more that $300- 350 a month, which I realize is a lofty goal... We´re not too concerned over the asthetics, we just need a place of our own for five months or so. Any info you have would be much appreciated (especially since they just put in a ping-pong table right outside our room, a highly underrated form of torture)!

Matt said...

hmmm... $300 is really pushing it, especially in summer...personally, i don't have any suggestions apart from look at the website i mentioned before and maybe try asking around if anyone has a room to spare in a shared house. Here on Cerro Concepcion and Alegre in Valpo there are tons of adverts up for room rentals for that price and under. Maybe a good option?

gmo said...

you could also rent a flat, there are several nice apartments in valparaiso, take a look at this blog valparaisoplaceres.blogspot.com

Matt said...

Well, yes...but Placeres is bleeding miles from anywhere that a tourist might want to be.

Lisa said...

Hi Matt -- thank you for all of the great information in your blogs. My husband and I will be in Valparaiso for five days or so in May and some friends may be with us as well. You may just refer me back to your notes on places to stay, but since that was written in July 2007, I thought I'd check to see if you had any new insight we should take into consideration. Zero looks ultra hip and well located, but then for a bit less, Gervasoni or Atkinson look beautiful and homey. Can't decide which feel would be better. And you recommended Gervasoni over Atkinson but the private balcony option at Atkinson is inviting... . Anyhow, would appreciate your thoughts even if you tell me to just re-read your blog. Thanks! Lisa

Matt said...

Go re-read the blog :)

I'd still probably recommend the Gervasoni over the Atkinson but the Gervasoni's booking system is likely to drive you mad.

I'm now friends with the owners of the Zero so i'm probably a little biased (i didn't know them when I originally wrote the post). It's more expensive than the Gervasoni but if you get one of the 4 suites at the front, the view beats anything you get at the G. The G's location is a tiny bit better than the Zero's, in that it's right next door to restaurants whereas the Zero is a couple of minutes walk away.

Casa Higueras is also really good and has fantastic views-the swimming pool is great too but in May it won't be much use. It's also a fair bit more expensive.

So i'd choose the Zero or the Gervasoni. Both are good options. If you choose the Zero, let me know so i can get a few beers out of the owners for the referral.. :)

Lisa said...

wow -- you weren't kidding -- their booking system is koo koo. but their location (if it's raining in may i want to get to my beer as dry as possible) and price are too inviting. so they want 50% down by a deposit in their bank? huh? my spanish is limited but maybe i'll just call them and see if i can give them a cc over the phone...? they're offering their matrimonial suite --is that the good one, do you know? if this all works out, we'll buy you a few beers. on a side note, haven't read all of your notes on b.a., but saw you lived there. we traveled there december 2006 and Loved it. two restaurants we still talk about, both in palermo if i remember correctly: grapa (best pizza ever) and casa cruz.

Matt said...

Yep, the 50% bank deposit is standard practice in Chile and causes no end of problems for people who aren't Chilean. It also causes problems for people who are Chilean as sometimes you can't even make the deposit online. At some point, Chilean hotels might decide to join the modern world. The only hotels that accept CC bookings as far as i know are the international chains, the Hotel Santa Cruz and the Zero & Casa Higueras here in Valpo. Please let me know how you go with the Gervasoni.

Watch out for the 'matrimonial' word-in Chile it often just means a room with a double bed.

And BA-Grapa i've never heard of (and best pizza in Argentina, the land with the most repulsive Italian food on the planet?!) but Casa Cruz is pretty decent. Hideously but entertainingly pretentious..it's one of the very few BA restaurants that lives up to the hype.

Michael said...

Hola Matt,
I'm throughly enjoying your blog...A world of information...and outstanding pic's...Thank you for sharing all...I'm planning on doing a total immersion class (Spanish) with a home stay...would you happen to know of any that you could recommend?
I'm planning on coming down after Sept...I'll be flying into Santiago...but can stay anywhere in Chile...Can stay up to a year...I don't think I'll want to do more than 3 months studying...will travel the balance...Gracias por todo su ayuda...

Matt said...

Hi Michael-unfortunately i have not the faintest idea about homestays and spanish immersion courses so i can't really help all that much beyond telling you something you already know-google it..! Valpo or Vina would both offer options i guess, stay away from Santiago. It's a hole.

marisalouie said...

Hi Matt, thanks for putting together such a great blog. I live in the hole otherwise known as Santiago (though it has its charms if you live here) and am planning ahead to spend NYE in Valpo. Would you recommend booking a hotel room with a view to take in the fireworks (I might be willing to splurge if that's something special), or would you recommend just staying in a good hostel and seeing the fireworks with the masses? Are there restaurants with views that offer a "cena + fuegos artificiales" package? Appreciate your advice! Saludos, Marisa

Matt said...

It depends on how much you want to spend. The expensive hotels charge a fortune...us$1000-1600 for 2 nights with drinks/meal/view of the fireworks.

Even cheap hostels jack up their rates by anything from 200-500%.

Your best bet is to find a cheap hostel and then get somewhere early enough to bag a decent spot to watch the fireworks. NYE is chaos really but totally spectacular.

Restaurants with a view might be Apolo or La Colombina. I don't know if they have NYE specials but I strongly suspect they do. Probs in the region of a lot of money...!

Michael said...

Hola Matt,
Great to to hear from the Corrugated City. Nice to hear about the expat get together and nice pic's. Im getting excited as I'm getting closer to coming this fall. Would really enjoy getting together with you expats there. Thanks again for keeping me up to date with happenings there.

Matt said...

Michael-No problem. Look forward to meeting when you make it out.

Leah said...

Hey there,
I'm wondering if you have any suggestions for setting up long-term living situations from afar. I will be moving to valparaiso in February, and i want to set up a hostel or co-op or group living kind of situation for about a month so i can have something to go to when i arrive, and a place to settle into for a short period while i go apartment searching.

any suggestions??

james said...

"A History and a detail for that visit this website"

Rented house on the hill pleasures; pleasures this hill is named because it had a gold mine in a creek (the holes are called pleasures of gold), the specific location of the house is "villa berlin" location that was a gift from a group of German immigrants in valparaiso as a gift to the city initiative that culminated in the establishment of homes for people in this friendly port.



page: www.vregionarriendos.tk
email: Gestiontransporte@gmail.com



certainly will never be as expensive as a hotel in the hills over promoted, but is more comfortable and offers what appears on the page.

that would be good, and I hope they liked the historical aya my hill, my industry and the offer stood.
best regards

James said...

ey!
I forgot another historical figure:
Cerro Cerro Placeres born as a fisherman (muchisimas decades ago, it is an ancient hill), now in spite of being modernized, still very ancient facades (moderately conserved) and is characterized by a hill with many students here because they are found the university "Federico Santa María" and is also close to the Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso (where I study)

Matt Graham said...

Hey Matt
Thanks for the blog!

I have to say - I'd stayed in Valparaiso over the weekend - a fabulous place. We stayed at the Gervasoni, which was a wonderful hotel -

...with the most shocking booking system. They apparently charge their own exchange rate which is higher than the national one. This resulted in a bitter argument over the bill - and I now discover they've charged me extra. Worse than anything was their terribly defensive attitude - there was a lot of shouting from them. I won't be staying here again if I come to Valparaiso again - which I'd like to! Have you had any experience like this - or am I just crazy?

Wonderful hotel, terrible management.

Matt said...

Matt- that's the experience I've had when trying to book for friends and I've heard of other people having the same problem. They have zero idea about how to run a hotel which is a shame as the place looks amazing. Sorry to hear they were such arses...I'd suggest the Zero Hotel if you come back (and you can afford it). I say this not just because I'm friends with the owners but because I know they run the place really well.

Where did you shoot your film in Somerset by the way (I clicked through your profile)? I'm from Sherborne in Dorset...

Matt Graham said...

That's so funny! I went to Taunton School. My brother shot the fim (which I wrote) on the Somerset Levels outside a tiny village the name of which escapes me. I live between Buenos Aires and LA at the moment, but I always think of Somerset - so beautiful!

I have to say I envy you in Valpariso - such a lovely place! Absolutely loved it - even the sleazy bars in the port were great! The hotel was wonderful, even though the argument was so, so ridiculous.

Let me know if you're coming to BA some time and we can get a drink! (I'm on facebook/asw).

Thanks again for the great blog - very useful and really good!

Matt

Matt said...

Yeah Valpo is nice although BA offers a lot more in terms of culture and nightlife (I lived in BA for 3 years before moving to Chile). I love being able to see the ocean here, though. It's probably my favourite part of living in Valpo. I'll soon be moving to the country and leaving the coast behind though...

I'll look you up next time I make it across to BA and if you're back here then let me know.

Anonymous said...

Hey - just wondered if miraculously you know of any place to stay in Valpo or Viña for New year's... we had an apartment all sewn up (and paid for!) for 6 months, but then the owners stated they 'mistakenly' doubled the booking, and we're out. Refund notwithstanding, we have airline tickets for 6 of us for those 4 days (12/30 - 1/3).
So... if you happen to know of a place that has 3 rooms, we would be delighted!

Matt said...

Ufff...last minute accommodation for NY in Valpo...that's a tough one. You could try Allegretto, Hostal Morgan, Harrington, Latitud 33, Hostal Patiperro...those are all the place I can think of off the top of my head. Good luck and enjoy NY if you make it there- it's both amazing and truly, truly disgusting at the same time. Public bathrooms are in short supply..!