Occupying the former Casa de la Moneda (Mint), this is one of Arequipa’s most well-known hotels.
Completed in 1794, the hotel façade is a classic Spanish colonial backdrop. A major refurbishment in 2008 unearthed frescoes, reliefs, and a chapel. The lobby, public areas, and restaurant are opulent, and at the heart of the hotel is a beautiful arcaded inner courtyard with cushioned seating all around. A fourth-floor terrace has views of the cathedral and the (sometimes smoking) Misti volcano.
Solid, super-thick walls ensure none of Arequipa’s street noise troubles guests day or night. The hotel is under five minutes’ walk from the Santa Catalina convent and other key sights, and close to some of the city’s best restaurants.
The rooms offer simple décor, some original architectural features, and Republican-era décor that encompasses gilt-framed mirrors, wooden furniture, iron chandeliers, and handsome textiles and rugs. All rooms come with a fridge, bath and shower, kettle and television.
A buffet breakfast served al fresco offers the usual eggs, bacon, fruit, cured meats, and cheeses, as well as good bread and cakes. The stately Alma restaurant serves Italian and Peruvian dishes such as trout ceviche, quinoa burgers, and alpaca steak, plus Andean cheeses and papaya fruit ice cream, a few local wines, and good pisco sours.