Peru's Machu Picchu, recently named one of the world’s New 7 Wonders
From an industry standpoint, Peru doesn’t quite seem to get the respect it deserves among South American destinations. But because the destination keeps reinventing itself with new developments—hotels and attractions pop up seemingly every month—Travel Agent expects it to get its due soon.
Here are some of the latest selling points from this country of ancient civilizations, diverse culture and modern spas and resorts. .
Aranwa Sacred Valley
Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel & Wellness, with 100 rooms and 15 suites—including a nearly 5,400-square-foot Presidential Suite—is a five-star luxury property that opened earlier this year in Urumbamba, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, about a 90-minute drive from the Inca capital of Cuzco. The altitude, however, is significantly lower than Cuzco, making it easier for travelers to acclimatize. Machu Picchu, one of the world’s New 7 Wonders, is easily accessible from here.
The first of many Aranwa Hotels Resorts & Spas expected to open throughout the country, Aranwa Sacred Valley recently unveiled its Aranwa Spa. It has seven treatment rooms, three hydrotherapy pools, an oxygen-relaxation room, a hyperbaric chamber, a yoga enclave and a fitness center, apart from a host of Aranwa Spa’s signature services.
Agents should contact Gabriel Alvarez, vice president of operations, at [email protected].
Casa Cartagena Hotel & Spa
Any story about Peru would be incomplete if we didn’t mention Casa Cartagena Hotel & Spa. Recognized as a historical gem by the National Institute of Culture, Casa Cartagena’s unique and vibrant history is just one piece of its charm.
Luxury Properties has restored the building, originally built by the Incas, to provide modern comfort and hospitality in a luxurious environment.
Throughout all the suites, an enriched oxygen system helps acclimatize guests to the altitude. For relaxation, they can visit the spa to indulge in the sauna, hydro-massage pool, massages and wellness treatments.
Agents should contact General Manager Jose Carlos Canales Anchorena at 011-511-242-3147.
Hotels on the Way
Libertador Hotels, Resorts & Spas, owned by Brescia Group, has invested $68 million to date in the Westin Libertador Lima Hotel. The hotel, in Lima’s financial district of San Isidro, will have 301 guestrooms, two restaurants, a bar-lounge, luxury spa and conference rooms with a capacity for more than 2,000 people.
Marriott International has announced that a 150-room JW Marriott Hotel will be built in Cuzco. With development plans already underway, the luxury Marriott branch will manage the hotel under a long-term agreement with Inversiones La Rioja S.A. The property will be located at the intersection of San Agustin and Ruinas in Cuzco’s colonial district and will open in 2010.
A dining area with a view as well as kitchenette, mini-bar and Jacuzzi are staples of suites at Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel
Cruising in Lake Titicaca
PeruRail plans to launch luxury tourist services in Lake Titicaca in Puno aboard an 89-year-old English ship, Ollanta, in late 2010.
PeruRail will invest between $6 million and $8 million in the restoration process alone. The most expensive component is remodeling the cabins, which are being designed to resemble those of the original ship. There will be 45 cabins, some of which will consist of a private bath and wooden deck.
The ship was acquired by the Ferrocarril Transandino, concessionaire of Peru’s southern and southeastern railways, as part of a property transfer by Empresa Nacional de Ferrocarriles. Following the first stage of renovation, which will include the main deck and public areas, only daily tours will be offered. The second phase of the renovation will pave the way for tour packages of three days and two nights.
LAN recently announced the addition of a new premium economy class to its Airbus 318, 319 and 320s. The new class has online check-in, preferential check-in and boarding, and VIP lounge admittance.
Once on board, clients will have an exclusive cabin and will be provided with personalized service, an exclusive wine list and quality catering.
They will have more space for comfort and a center seat that converts into a table. Premium economy class passengers will also get priority baggage pickup.
For information on tourism in Peru, agents can contact the country’s tourism board, PromPeru. PromPeru’s travel agent specialists’ program website is www.peruagent.com. North American agents should get in touch with Mary Rachelle Cherpak (212-444-7128, [email protected]), accounts supervisor, PromPeru.
The Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel, with 100 rooms and 15 suites, is Peru’s newest five-star luxury property