Los Eucaliptos 590, San Isidro, Peru
The low-key historic boutique hotel Country Club Lima, located in a ritzy residential and business area, is like a hushed conversation in the corner of a loud party. This refined and luxurious hotel serves as a boutique refuge for anyone seeking a sense of history and a feeling of grandeur.
Located across from the Lima Country Club, this equally traditional and sumptuous space is a favorite of many who shun the larger and flashier hotels in the area. After a round of tasteful recent room revamps, this is in many ways the most luxurious hotel in the city. If you're in Lima for pleasure instead of business, the choice is between here, the seaside Miraflores Park Hotel, or the much smaller inns around the Barranco neighborhood.
Huge palms and wide stairs lead through a series of arches to the grand lobby, which nods to the days of Francisco Pizarro. Extravagant oil paintings picture conquistadors in battle, gilded torchieres join a large fireplace, and the Baroque furniture adds an air of seriousness. All through the hotel, rotating Spanish Colonial treasures on from a nearby museum are on display. You check in while sitting at a desk, while past the lobby a stained–glass skylight brightens up the adjoining café. The afternoon tea is a big social event here, while a pianist performs in the background.
In terms of history and a sense of place, modern buildings can't top this 1927 mansion filled with 300 pieces of centuries-old artwork donated by the Pedro de Osma Museum. It attracts a mix of high-ranking diplomats, industry leaders with their families, and romantic couples starting or ending a vacation in Peru. While you may not recognize the faces, the Spanish-speaking customers in the bar and restaurant are often a who's who of local movers and shakers.
Rooms at this hotel are special enough to attract plenty of repeat guests on their own and are looking especially attractive after a round of renovations. While there is a still a strong sense of place, new hardwood floors or high-end carpet have replaced squeaky parquet or tile in some quarters. The drapes and striking woven headboard came forward in time, and there are more places for recharging your gadgets. Good work desks, minibars, and ample closets with quality hangers keep you comfortable. Robes, slippers, turndown service, and a welcome plate of local goodies make you feel wanted, in addition to the glass of sparkling wine at check-in. Plenty of marble adorns the baths, with better room classes getting you a separate stall shower from the large soaking tub or whirlpool.
Even the lowest level of room classes here are larger than most competitors' rooms, at 430 square feet (Master Class) and 540 (Grand Class). The suites at Country Club Lima are often single-room quarters, but they are very large, with spacious sitting areas beside their king bed or two paired queen beds. Some of the upper floor rooms have a furnished balcony facing the golf course. Those on the street can be a little noisier, while the back ones on the ground level are extra quiet. The Dom Perignon Suite is for those who have some photos to pose for: besides a supply of the famous bubbly there's plenty of gilded gold, oriental rugs, a dining table, sumptuous sofas, and a marble bathroom as large as some people's apartments.
Perroquet, the fine-dining room, displays one of the most upscale atmospheres in town. It serves all three meals in style, with a good mix of Peruvian and international dishes that sometimes seem to pretty to eat. There's a large indoor dining space, as well as a nice outdoor terrace on two levels. The paneled English-style bar is a good spot for deal-sealing by day and romance by night. There's also a Starbucks and a bakery around the corner on the outside of the building. Be advised though, you'll need to get a taxi to get elsewhere as there's not much within walking distance.
A small but attractive swimming pool has been a welcome addition, tucked into an area near a gym where you can get a workout. Guests here have access to the country club golf course right in the city, which is tough to get a tee time for if you're staying elsewhere. There is a 24-hour self-service business center on site and a concierge to take care of booking leisure activities. The Yaku spa is ready to knead out your trekking knots through hydrotherapy or massage, plus they also offer acupuncture and facials.
In all room class levels, Country Club Lima offers a good upscale value compared to the competition and you won't feel like a number here. The well-trained staff at the this luxury Lima hotel is rivaled only by the Swissotel, Hotel B, and Miraflores Park Hotel and it doesn't take long to start feeling like a VIP that everyone knows by name.
Web Address: www.countryclublima.com
Total Number of Rooms: 83
Published rates: $190 to $2,300
Review and photos by Timothy Scott.