The 10 Best City Hotels in Central and South America

The best city hotels in Central and South America, according to Travel + Leisure readers, introduce travelers to local history, cuisine, and warm service.

The multifaceted cultures and experiences of Central and South America hold a special appeal for travelers. As in past years, luxury resorts nestled amid bustling metropolises on the South American continent swept the category. Travel + Leisure readers voted for their favorite picks and applauded hotels' historic ties, central locations, and warm, welcoming service, from Buenos Aires to Guayaquil, Ecuador.

Every year for our World's Best Awards survey, T+L invites its readers to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels (including safari lodges) were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Properties were classified as city or resort based on their locations and amenities.

South America dominated the category this year, with three countries in particular earning praise from travelers. In Peru, Cuzco lays claim to both the No. 1 winner, Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, and No. 5 JW Marriott El Convento Cusco, a boutique property in a restored 16th-century convent. Another Belmond property, Miraflores Park in Lima, earned the No. 6 spot. In Argentina, three urban hotels made the list. One voter called the No. 8 Alvear Palace Hotel in the capital city "the best place to stay in the country." Nearby, the Palacio Duhau – Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, which earned the No. 7 spot, curates exhibitions of contemporary Argentine art, from photography to sculptures, as well as Ibero-American works.

Monestario, Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, Cusco, Peru
Monestario, Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, guest room, Cusco, Peru. Courtesy of Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, Cusco

Colombia's Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena earned the No. 4 spot. Guests appreciated the views from the hotel's guest rooms, which look out onto a tropical courtyard or the Caribbean Sea, as well as its location in the historic El Centro neighborhood. One voter called it their favorite hotel behind the old city walls, while another wrote it encapsulated "the best of everything Colombian, located in a beautiful historic city."

We'd be remiss not to call out the W Santiago in Chile, which won the No. 2 spot, with several readers sharing positive anecdotes from the 190-room hotel. COVID-19 cleaning protocols were also praised. "The housekeeping service is excellent," noted one voter.

Read on to find out what set the No. 1 Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel apart from its peers and made it the top city hotel in Central and South America for 2022.

1. Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, Cuzco, Peru

Monestario, Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, Cuzco, Peru
Monestario, Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, patio, Cuzco, Peru. Courtesy of Monasterio, A Belmond Hotel, Cusco

Located in a former 16th-century monastery with all the furnishings of a modern-day stay, this 126-room property has been on the World's Best list more than 15 times in the awards' 27-year history. Guests are encouraged to slow down and savor local life – and traditional coca tea – as they adjust to the city's high altitude. Religious artwork pays homage to the building's past life, while a daylong Pisco-and-opera experience combines cocktail tastings and dinner at El Tupay restaurant with a live opera performance.

Score: 97.87

More information: belmond.com

2. W Santiago, Santiago, Chile

W Santiago, Chile
W Santiago, Chile, hotel terrace bar. Courtesy of W Santiago

Score: 96.36

More information: marriott.com

3. Casa San Agustín, Cartagena, Colombia

Casa San Agustin, Cartagena, Colombia
Casa San Agustin, hotel library, Cartagena, Colombia. Courtesy of Casa San Agustin

Score: 95.79

More information: hotelcasasanagustin.com

4. Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena, Cartagena, Colombia

Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena, Cartagena, Colombia
Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena, Cartagena, Colombia, hotel guest room. Christopher Kewish/Courtesy of Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena

Score: 95.20

More information: sofitellegendsantaclara.com

5. JW Marriott El Convento Cusco, Cuzco, Peru

JW Convento Cusco, Peru
JW Convento Cusco, hotel entrance patio, Cusco, Peru. Courtesy of JW Marriott El Convento Cusco

Score: 95.05

More information: marriott.com

6. Miraflores Park, A Belmond Hotel, Lima, Peru

Miraflores Park, Belmond Hotel, Lima, Peru
Miraflores Park, Belmond Hotel, exterior, Lima, Peru. Courtesy of Miraflores Park, A Belmond Hotel

Score: 94.78

More information: belmond.com

7. Palacio Duhau – Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Palacio Duhau - Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, Argentina
Palacio Duhau - Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, hotel exterior, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Courtesy of Palacio Duhau-Park Hyatt Buenos Aires

Score: 94.00

More information: hyatt.com

8. Alvear Palace Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Alvear Palace Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Alvear Palace Hotel, exterior, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Courtesy of Alvear Palace Hotel

Score: 93.26

More information alvearpalace.com

9. Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil, Guayaquil, Ecuador

Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil, Ecuador
Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil, hotel terrace, Ecuador. Courtesy of Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil

Score: 92.75

More information: oroverdeguayaquil.com

10. Faena Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Faena Hotel Buenos Aires, Argentina
Faena Hotel Buenos Aires, hotel Faena Suite, Argentina. Courtesy of Faena Hotel Buenos Aires

Score: 92.25

More information: faena.com

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