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After flying LGA-ORD on American and MEX-LIM-EZE-SCL on LAN, I pretty much felt like a pile of garbage. I had a day-long layover to look forward to at SCL and booked a room at the Holiday Inn by redeeming a free night from hotels.com, who has a buy 10, get one free program – effectively 10% off all bookings made through the website. Anyway, I cleared immigration, already had my Chilean reciprocity from another trip earlier in the year (which is now a moot point since it is now free to visit Chile!) and made it through customs in about thirty minutes. I was so exhausted, my eyes were just about crossing trying to read the signs.
I approached an airport employee and asked, “Hotel?” but he waved his hands like I was speaking an alien language. There is only ONE hotel connected to SCL, that being the Holiday Inn, and “hotel” is the same in English and Spanish. But whatever, I saw it right after I walked out of the airport.
For anyone who might have a long layover at SCL, if you find yourself wondering why there are no signs for the hotel, don’t worry. Just walk outside the airport and you can see it connected by walkways on the ground and skyways overhead. There’s a pretty fountain outside and it’s pretty clearly marked. I thought it might be inside the terminal like some hotels are. This one isn’t. Walk outside.
I was early. Check-in was at FOUR PM (?!) but I was there around 11am. I approached the counter demurely with all my luggage and mentioned I was Gold in the IHG program and was it possible to check in a little early. The agent pulled out a key card, took a credit card number for incidentals, and welcomed me to the hotel. Thank god. I really wanted a nap.
Tired as I was, I also desperately wanted a shower. I was struck by how lovely the hotel was for an airport location, snapped a few pictures, then headed up to the room on the 11th Floor.
After a nap and shower, I went to walk around the property. It felt very spacious, clean, and modern: all welcome qualities for a hotel anywhere. Very unexpected for an airport location. The room was a bit basic, which is totally fine, but the bar, seating areas, and restaurant were very well-decorated.
How I did it
Hotels.com is an unsung hero of the travel industry. You can mix and match any number of brands and chains and use the free night at any hotel on the website. The only caveat is that the stays do NOT earn hotel loyalty points. Makes sense in certain cases. Best if used for boutique hotels or in places where your preferred hotel brand isn’t available. They also consistently run great portal bonuses, FYI. I’ve earned thousands of extra points by booking through their site.
Being Gold with IHG helped me get an early check-in. I’m sure with a little kindness, anyone could get it to happen. 🙂
This property was honestly a pleasure to stay in. Relaxing, and steps from the airport. I could see the terminal from my room. The service was prompt and courteous, and the property has a restaurant, bar, business center, pool, and a little gym. The price was about $190 a night, if I remember correctly. Not terrible.
The room was quiet and I slept soundly. Because it was so close to the airport, I actually walked over to spend some time in the airport shops and had a snack in a restaurant there. If you ever have a 12+ hour layover (or 21 hours like I did), I recommend this hotel to recharge and relax in. If fate or chance ever throws me a day to spend at SCL, I’d welcome the chance to stay at this hotel again.
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