9 de Octubre 414 y García Moreno, Guayaquil, Ecuador
At 35 years of age, the Oro Verde Guayaquil is the grande dame among upscale hotels in downtown Guayaquil, with a combination of amenities, services and location that make it a preferred property for leisure as well as business travelers. Recent upgrades have improved the overall experience.
Thanks to its downtown location—walking distance to attractions like the cathedral and the Malecon 2000 waterfront—the Oro Verde Guayaquil hotel does a healthy business with leisure travelers, especially through large tour operators like Abercrombie & Kent and Tauck.
The lobby entrance at the property exudes a bit of old-school elegance, with shiny floors, thick columns, and high ceilings. Immediately off the lobby is Gourmet Deli, which serves casual deli cuisine and desserts, and has outdoor seating on the sidewalk as well as in the lobby. The most extensive recent renovations took place here in 2014 and 2015. Then there were a few post–earthquake lobby retouches after the 2016 earthquake that struck the northern part of Ecuador's Pacific coast.
Renovation is most apparent in the hotel's 236 guest rooms. They are distributed between two towers and are divided into three categories: Deluxe (their standard category), Leading Suite, and Premium floor accommodations. The Premium Floor is the top choice, with attractive, mildly contemporary decor in pleasing shades of blue, complemented with attractive hardwood floors. These rooms are the only category to have a bathtub and walk-in closet. The Premium Floor Suite is a comfortable size, with a living area, and all these rooms include access to a small lounge area with complimentary wine and domestic beer.
On the seventh floor of the main tower are four Leading Suites, all of which have 1.5 bathrooms, two televisions, and a living area with sofa bed. These are the best option for families.
Breakfast is included with all room rates and categories, and all rooms feature mini-bar refrigerators stocked with free soft drinks and water.
Additional amenities include a moderately sized outdoor rooftop pool, and a nicely designed fitness center that's free to guests (and is not open to the public.) Massage and spa services are available by reservation. The fitness center also has men's and women's Jacuzzis and saunas.
Dining and entertainment options are varied, including La Fondue, a Swiss restaurant, and El Capitan, an atmospheric bar with an old-fashioned maritime theme (hotel guests get a free welcome drink here). Le Gourmet is a formally elegant venue with an international menu. A recent addition is an extensive cacao tasting menu, providing guests with samples of various dishes prepared with one of Ecuador's tastiest exports.
The hotel's included breakfast is served in a buffet format at El Patio, a freshly decorated dining spot that also serves an extensive buffet lunch (handmade shrimp crepes, ceviche, and a "cake shot" dessert are among the favored dishes). There's also an a–la–carte dinner menu with Ecuadorian and international cuisine.
Travelers looking for even more sumptuous accommodations should consider Oro Verde's newest Guayaquil property: Hotel del Parque, a boutique hotel set in a beautifully restored former senior home that dates to 1891. With only 42 rooms and a prized setting in the Parque Historico, a city park dotted with renovated historic architecture and cultural attractions, it will likely be the city's most luxurious—and expensive—property when it opens in 2017.
Web Address: www.oroverdeguayaquil.com
Total Number of Rooms: 236
Published rates: $129 - $390 BB
Review & photos by Mark Chesnut