- Introduction: Vacation Run to Santiago, Chile
- Review: American Airlines First Class – DFW to Santiago – 777-200
- Review: Grand Hyatt Santiago – Executive Suite with Terrace – the Shakespeare Suite
- Enjoying some of the must do’s of Chile
- Review: American Airlines First Class – Santiago to DFW – 777-200
- Conclusion: Vacation Run to Santiago, Chile
Arriving into Santiago, we opted to arrange our airport transfer through the hotel. Let me be clear, the hotel option is never the cheapest, but for this trip, being only 2 nights, I figured that I wanted to reduce risk, and have a smooth transition from flight to hotel. It kind’ve loosely fits into my $20 rule, and we appreciated the driver, as he pointed various highlights out along the way, and shared some information about his country.
Arriving at the hotel, we waited in the lobby for a few minutes, as the front desk was short staffed, and the hotel was at capacity—there were not one, but two weddings that evening, in fact! Well, we were no sooner at the front desk, when we were recommended to take the elevator up to the Grand Club for check-in.
The first concerns came about when the woman checking us in highlighted the fact that we were on a 1 night paid rate, using a Diamond Suite Upgrade, and our second night was in a standard room as an award. Hyatt’s standard policy is that they cannot guarantee that the hotel will let you stay in a suite, if you use do multiple reservations, any of which as all points. I get that, I totally understand the policy, but most times, hotels are generous and able to just make that happen. We were informed that if we wanted to stay in the suite the second night, it would be a $91 additional cost.
My response was “not happening.” I asked for an afternoon room switch, which she seemed to kind’ve begrudgingly agree to.
Of course, the experience turned a bit more positive, when she informed us that our room was ready, and that because there were no Executive Suites available at this early hour (roughly 11am), we would be staying in an Executive Suite with Terrace. We do enjoy having a terrace, in nice weather destinations, and this was no exception.
Entering the room, it was clear the hotel was a little older, but, for the most part, was nicely maintained. The door oddly didn’t have anything to help it close. I just state that, because, I didn’t expect it and opened the door with a bit more gusto than, perhaps I should have.
The living room was spacious, with a couch, a chair, an ottoman, a coffee table and a nice television. It was pretty minimalist, but it a kind’ve classic way. On the other end of the room (closer to the door), there was a gorgeous antique looking desk, serving cart, and an espresso machine, complimented by some complimentary snacks that were quite tasty.
The terrace was right off the living room. The terrace was spacious, with a couch, two chairs and 1 chaise lounge. My one comment here is that I would’ve really appreciated a second chaise lounge. I’m not sure that I understand why they only had one.
Opposite the door to the Terrace was the door to the bedroom, to the left you had the entrance to the bathroom which had one sink, a Jacuzzi tub, a separate room with a toilet and bidet, and then a separate standup shower.
There was also a closet with the in-room safe.
The Hotel’s Public Areas
The hotel has a number of restaurants, although I can’t say that we spent any time in any of them, the lobby felt larger than I think it was,
but the highlight in our opinion, was the pool. Here you have a hotel in the middle of a city, near a major highway, and yet they were able to create a peaceful place to lounge in the sun. How did they do this? With a beautiful waterfall, that created enough tranquil kind’ve which noise, to drown out all the traffic passing buy.
In addition to the pool, there was a separate standalone building with the gym and the spa.
The Grand Club
Entering the Grand Club, it reminded me a lot like the JW Marriott Rio de Janeiro, with 4 story high windows, it certainly looked much bigger than it really was. Aside from the main room, there were two side areas. I don’t recall ever feeling like the club was at full capacity, despite the hotel being at full capacity.
Breakfast generally involved a selection of meats, cheeses, cereal, juices—including Beet juice, that was interesting to see—and two hot choices, Bacon and scrambled eggs were the choices both days we were there. It didn’t seem to me like there were any “made to order” options, as some hotels have.
The evening drinks and snacks was held from 5-8pm each night. This is one of the longer hotels I have seen, usually they are only 2 hours. The service was very pleasant, and most of the beverages were table service vs. self service. The only challenge was, every so often all of the servers disappeared into the kitchen.
The food didn’t seem to really strike me as exhaustive, and they made a point to not leave a whole lot of it out at any given time, but they did replenish it through the night.
The Grand Hyatt Santiago kind’ve grew on us, as the stay progressed. I’m a huge fan of the pool, the waterfall, I think makes the experience so much better, especially in the middle of a city. The terrace suite made a big difference for us as well, as we spent a fair amount on time on it. One interesting experience upon checking out, though, and I need to do more research on it, because the person checking us out, charged us in US Dollars vs. Chilean Pesos, and when I tried to dispute not having been given a choice, her response was that it was the only way to not have to charge me the 19% local tax. I’m not sure I’ve ever experienced that before.