I stayed here for a week on business. I did not find any fault with the hotel except for the check out, which was unacceptably slow. That is unfortunate since it is the last interaction of the guest with the hotel. Otherwise, I enjoyed staying here and would gladly do so again.
I arrived before midday on a Sunday when the hotel was full, but I got my room immediately. After 30 hours of travel I really appreciated that. The room was old style, wooden furniture, but quite OK. It was moderate for size. I was on 3rd floor and had a balcony overlooking the street. There was a double window system, which more or less eliminated the street noise, so I was never disturbed (with the windows open, the accelerating buses were quite loud). Bed was comfortable, work space OK but not great, wardrobe space fine, bathroom good, shower good. The A/C seemed to only have turbo-setting, so I used it as little as possible (it's an eco-friendly thing to do anyway).
Breakfast was good, reasonable variety, good coffee. the lounge bar was good, tasty food but limited choice and rather expensive. I ate at the Bristol restaurant on only one evening. Interesting menu, seems to be a bit hit and miss, but really good when it hits. Service throughout the hotel was excellent, friendly and helpful, and never overbearing. I am not going to argue with the other reviewers who said negative things, I will just say that I had a very different and positive experience. The lobby is very good, many seats and tables that are just right to either meet whoever you want to, or sit and relax. This is what hotels used to be like.
The fitness centre is OK. It is compact, with just a few machines in one room and reasonable selection of resistance machines in another room. There are not many users so it's fine. There is also an adjoining spa facility, I didn't use it so can't comment.
Internet is free in the hotel, there is one password for lobby/restaurant and another for the rooms. It works OK, but there are many routers and not all seem to work properly. If you seem to have connected but don't get internet, I suggest to delete that router from your network preferences and connect to another. Keep going until you find a reliable one, and then you're OK.
The hotel is downtown and almost all of the Ministries and government agencies are within 10 minutes walk, as are the original buildings of the two main universities (the main campuses are elsewhere). Cross the avenue and you hit many pedestrian-friendly shopping streets. There is a metro station close to the hotel, this is a good way to get around, but avoid rush hour if you can. Buy a 'Tarjeta BIP' - a smart card with stored value - at the Metro kiosk, and you can use it on metro or bus, it's a flat fare system, about a dollar per trip. The main bus routes also go by the hotel, but there is almost no information about them (even their website has nothing in English) so it's hard to use even though it is fast.
The church beside the hotel (San Francisco) is the oldest surviving church in Chile. It is not spectacular, but it is a tranquil place despite the traffic outside. It is a nice place to visit and just to sit for a while. As others have said, there are not many good restaurants nearby. Suggestion is to walk or take Metro (3 stops) to Baquedano, then about 5 minutes north from there is Bellavista, bohemian area with lots of restaurants.
In summary, I liked this place. It reminded me of a wonderful hotel in Seville where I stayed 25 years ago. Service was very good and I felt at home here. I will come back to Santiago in July, and I will stay here again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Plaza San Francisco is the only sustainable five star Hotel in downtown Santiago. Known for its excellent and warm service with 27 years of experience, our Hotel is the perfect destination for your pleasure and business trips. With 146 comfortable and spacious rooms that will allow you to have the desired rest you are looking for, so you can enjoy all the tourist and historical attractions of the city. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Plaza San Francisco Santiago
- Plaza San Francisco Hotel