Where to Go in Cartagena
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This reportage is an extract of an article on Instants magazine.

Thanks to Trendland friend Relais & Chateaux, we had the chance to experience a perfect gateway in Cartagena, Colombia. After a short and inexpensive (average $350 round trip!) 4h30 flight from New York, we arrived into the warm and sunny weather of the Caribbean.

Cartagena is one of the few places in the world that effortlessly possesses an old world charm very similar to Havana or Casco Viejo, Panama. The center of Cartagena’s beauty resides inside its historical walled city – A quick walk through ‘La Ciudad Vieja’ really transports you back to another time – back to when the Spanish colonized the place in the 1500s.

We spent our five days adventure at the gorgeous Casa Pestagua who is part of the Relais & Chateaux family and which, in the 18th Century, was the home of Count of Pestagua. The quiet boutique Hotel with exquisite marble bathrooms was perfect to relax, rest and rejuvenate. We enjoyed reading around the pool surrounded by lush green vines and palm trees protecting you from the very strong sun.

We went island hopping for a full day between Isla Grande and Baru, finishing our trip at the Blue Apple Beach House with a yummy fresh seafood lunch and a nap under their beach cabanas.

The food in Cartagena was great and inexpensive, a mix of seafood dishes at La Cevicheria or enjoying Colombian specialties like the Mote de Queso at Juan del Mar.

With its cobblestone streets, colorful colonial homes, and charismatic citizens, Cartagena is the absolute perfect place for your next vacation or a long weekend.

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Above: Casa Pestagua
Where to Stay?

Casa Pestagua

It is said that Casa Pestagua is the most beautiful house in Cartagena. Painted ceilings, carved stone windows, courtyards and royal palms… this Moorish-inspired colonial palace was built in the eighteenth century, in time of splendour for the city and Spanish galleons laden with gold and precious stones. Under their double ceilings, the rooms are unmistakably romantic; the pond invites you to refresh yourself amidst a beautiful exotic garden, whilst the restaurant under the arcades inspires aristocratic meals. Claude Pimont, the charismatic Maître de Maison, welcomes you with such warmth you will feel as if you were the actual Count de Pestagua!

cartagena casa pestagua trendland
pestagua general vibe
Above: Casa Pombo
Where to Stay?

Casa Pombo

Casa Pombo is among the oldest houses in the city. Built on a lot highly prized since the period for its location next to the Cathedral and the State Capitol, with and open view of Bolivar Square, the main plaza of the walled city.

Pombo House has foundations dating back to the beginnings of Cartagena, wich was sttled in 1533. In 1804, this aristocratic mansion belonged to Don Manuel de Anguiano, commanding officier of the Rotal Army and later hero of the War for the Independence. The Pombo family, with Cartagena tradition and noble heritage, the assure in their next 150 years of ownership and exceptional conservation of the house’s colonial architectural features

casa pombo
casa pombo
Above: Blue Apple Beach House
Where to Go?

Blue Apple Beach House

Expert at lazy days! Escape the heat and hustle of the city and enjoy some of the best service, food and drinks in the islands in a laid back, Caribbean setting.

“The weekend playground for the city’s hipsters, the vibe is 1960s St Tropez: laid-back and Bardot-like.”

blue apple beach house
city around
Above: Juan Del Mar
Where to Eat?

You can find a lot of great local food a bit everywhere once you go out of the old town. Two of our favorite place to eat was La Cevicheria and Juan del Mar.

La Cevicheria has the best fresh seafood you’ll find! Service is quick and delicious. It was the perfect spot for lunch and people-watching.

Juan Del Mar is only couple casa away from La Cevicheria. A very vibrant spot with lush green vines draping the walls and Spanish music serenading diners.

la cevicheria cartagena
la cevicheria cartagena
What to Expect?

cartagena old town
city around
city around

Interested in a more extended guide? Contact us for details.

"The pace is noticeably slow, the energy is smooth and a gentle Latin melody fills the air as you navigate your way through small colonial streets and beautifully lush little squares."
This trip was made possible thanks to
logo Relais Chateaux small
This reportage is an extract of an article on Instants magazine.