The Belmond Monasterio is an extraordinary Peruvian hotel.
God lives here, well he must some of the time, as the mysterious but powerful energy of spiritual beings is present from the moment you walk into this luxurious property in the middle of Cusco, one of Peru’s most beautiful cities.
There are locations in the world, where a luxury hotel isn’t always necessary, but in Cusco, it’s definitely a priority, and recently I stayed in one of the world’s best, at The Belmond Monasterio.
Cusco is as spiritual and beautiful a location you will find anywhere in the world. Cobbled streets, Spanish style buildings at every turn, spectacular scenery and world class restaurants make it a gorgeous Peruvian destination.
Nestled near the Urubamba Valley of the Andes mountain range, it sits below the global landmark & Unesco world heritage site, Machu Picchu. It was the historic capital of the Inca Empire from the 13th until the 16th century Spanish conquest.
The Belmond Hotel Montasterio in Cusco is absolute luxury at every turn, and yet maintains the simplicity & humbleness of its religious history. The former monastery has a unique charm and sophistication about it, from soaring ceilings, to elegant furniture pieces, and jaw-droppingly beautiful art work.
Monks chanting is beamed through the elegantly maintained fountain-filled courtyard in the mornings over breakfast, and a chapel decorated in stunning gold baroque style picture frames sits available for guests to enjoy a moment of solitude at any time.
The former monestary was built in 1595, and like the whole area suffered greatly through earthquakes in the 1600’s, and was eventually rebuilt to become a seminary until it was later turned into a hotel in 1965.
The food is first class, and almost everything on offer is organic. During my stay, an Opera dinner, where local opera singers moved amongst the tables singing was absolute perfection.
There was even an open fire in the courtyard for guests to sit around for a pre-dinner drink.
The spa has an energy about it which is clam, strong and grounded.
Cusco is a place where the height of global tourism crosses paths with some of the world’s poorest. Few locals in this part of the world earn more than $10,000 a year, almost all are vegetarian and only eat organic. Everything is grown in the fields around the small city.
But like many poor locations, the happiness, peace & overwhelming calmness of the locals is palpable, and a pleasure for Westerners to experience. Perhaps thats one reason why the spirality of the place is so strong.
Locals I met and staff at the hotel seemed honoured to have 2 million people visiting every year to walk amongst their historical sites.
This hotel is a place where you can truly get away from it all, be pampered, and take time out to reflect on your life. I often talk about de-tox locations, and this is one where you can’t help but sit with yourself and look within.
The perfect place to begin a journey to Machu Picchu as I did, or simply to get away from it all for a while.